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Tim Cook on Mac Desktop commitment Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 4th April 2017
  #691
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MusiKLover's Avatar
I'd imagine it's simpler for Apple to admit the mistakes because it would appear they've had strategic re-alignments. I would almost wager that many of those who worked on the 2013 Model are not working at Apple today, or in different divisions, judging from reports of internal business unit changes in recent times. It's typical corporate behavior -- they can now admit mistakes because those in charge did not make the decisions and/or market forces adjusted their stance, so the story goes. After all, this was the chaotic period after Steve Jobs. Tim Cook appears to be earning his stripes accordingly.

The good news is that the strategic direction has been firmly stated for the Mac Product Line.
Old 4th April 2017
  #692
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antichef's Avatar
Sounds like their notion of the failure is primary around the dual GPU architecture that never became fashionable, with devs/users prefering single massive GPUs which the trash can design can't support because it would get too hot on one side.

They don't talk about audio users much, but sort of imply that we're a group for whom the trash can works well, reading between the lines.

Or maybe it's just purchase justification thinking on my part. I've actually been pretty happy with my trash can, except for some difficulties I've had with upgrading the hard drive using an aftermarket SSD (all is OK now though)
Old 4th April 2017
  #693
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jwh1192's Avatar
i wonder what they mean by Modular ?? so a trashcan for CPU, Memory, GPU's, etc ... and then a another companion trashcan that has PCIe / Drive Slots ??

probably not, more like it will have the same lame design, just letting you swap the things you cannot right now ..

or will it go back to a Workstation Format ??

another year to wait .. i might be good at Windows by then and say F U apple !!!!!
Old 4th April 2017
  #694
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antichef's Avatar
For starters, 'modular' probably includes the ability to swap the GPU, and that alone requires a complete design overhaul, apparently
Old 4th April 2017
  #695
Quote:
Originally Posted by qwe View Post
Please do explain?
Too many crap configurations around. Lots of cheap components with poor drivers.
Power is not the issue, rather the components behaving properly. It is getting better slowly, graphics cards rarely are an issue now, so is onboard wifi etc.
Main issue is that most likely, many settings will need to be tweaked.
Old 4th April 2017
  #696
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pulsar modular's Avatar
 

Wow, they are listening to their users

This seems a dramatic turn-around and they're announcing plans well in advance...probably because they've been taking such a beating

This is great news.
Old 4th April 2017
  #697
Gear Nut
 

So new Mac Pro with more powerful GPU and new iMac with more thinner cool looking?... Ok thats cool....
Old 4th April 2017
  #698
Lives for gear
I am interested in how you computer folk interpret "modular." A quick google search for "best gpr for vr" yields a slew of triple-fanned pcie monstrosities.

And Apple wants to let its users get into VR.

I'm hoping this means pcie slots. Does anyone have a different view?
Old 4th April 2017
  #699
qwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
Too many crap configurations around. Lots of cheap components with poor drivers.
Power is not the issue, rather the components behaving properly. It is getting better slowly, graphics cards rarely are an issue now, so is onboard wifi etc.
Main issue is that most likely, many settings will need to be tweaked.
Hmm, by "gaming machine" I was thinking of high-end "gaming" motherboards from Asus and the like.

Most of the drivers are Intel-supplied these days?

Many settings will need to be tweaked compared to a machine custom built for DAW use, do you mean?
Old 4th April 2017
  #700
qwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 808KickDrum View Post
I am interested in how you computer folk interpret "modular."
Motherboard. Slots. Socket for CPU. Lots of space/mounting points in the case to add whatever extra parts you require.

Motherboard can be easily changed. PSU can be easily changed.

I suspect Apple has a slightly different idea of "modular" to me.

I think they at least mean there will be some internal expansion available rather than everything external. But this is just beyond speculation at this point.
Old 5th April 2017
  #701
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Poinzy's Avatar
 

The iMac fits in the iShippingBox without any special adapters.
Old 5th April 2017
  #702
Here for the gear
 

Modular probably means same thing it does in consoles
Old 5th April 2017
  #703
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
Actually, it is. Gamers are looking for the latest and fastest, and it has to be cheap if possible. Case modding is an added extra which is important for many gamers. Macs are stagnant in design and quickly outdated, which is exactly the opposite.
Gaming is insanely huge, it is the largest entertainment industry by far.
Yes, but my point was that Apple should go for gaming machines if they intend to be a consumer oriented products company. You only looked at what is there now. Apple shouldn't do gaiming like everyone else does, mind you. The Apple way, if they could find where they put it.
Old 5th April 2017
  #704
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexff View Post
I can't stop laughing!
Boom. That should shut most of us up.
I'll shut up I when I'm looking at what's on (under) my desk and think "from my dead cold fingers…".
Old 5th April 2017
  #705
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post
Apple clearly disagree and rightly so: The laws of physics and thermal dissipation can not be beaten. For performance computing, a desktop, or rather a larger case design, will always get you further than a consumer design with a size restriction.

No, they don't. I was speaking about the coming decade, not this minute. Physics? We all live with the old model machines right now. Computing is changing, whether you notice this or not. What's at the research forefront now will be commonplace tomorrow.

I maintain that what you actually want is computer power, great visuals and flexibility. There's no law saying this must be in the form of a box. That you can only imagine this with big boxes and displays is your problem. The future is coming. For now I'll settle for a current desktop.
Old 5th April 2017
  #706
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Overall, I feel the new adjustment updates with the current Mac Pro line are "too little too late". All of those new configurations were available already in 2013, no? It's just price adjustments, really.

Actually, in 2013 the pricing of these models, if you wanted them, was quite attractive. At least I couldn't get a 6-core with all those components (more or less) built then for less than what Apple asked. This is not so since a few years. So label me not impressed.

Sure it's good they uncharacteristically pre-announce. But with the level of noise in many places actually, they had to.
Old 5th April 2017
  #707
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Unless you already found your way to this John Gruber blog piece from the links above Daring Fireball: The Mac Pro Lives I suggest you read it. John's reflections on this quaqmire are spot on.
Old 5th April 2017
  #708
qwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
No, they don't. I was speaking about the coming decade, not this minute. Physics? We all live with the old model machines right now. Computing is changing, whether you notice this or not. What's at the research forefront now will be commonplace tomorrow.


"Everything is in the cloud now….It’s this nonsense.

"…But it’s not water vapor. All it is is a computer attached to a network. What are you talking about? I mean, what do you think Google runs on?…Water vapor? It’s databases and operating systems and memory and microprocessors and the Internet!"

(http://allthingsd.com/20091002/anoth...routine-larry/)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
I maintain that what you actually want is computer power, great visuals and flexibility. There's no law saying this must be in the form of a box. That you can only imagine this with big boxes and displays is your problem. The future is coming. For now I'll settle for a current desktop.
I can think of much better physical controls and displays for desktop computers. Too expensive for consumer applications!
Old 5th April 2017
  #709
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qwe View Post
"Everything is in the cloud now….It’s this nonsense.
No, it's not. You should get out more from the studio and get acquainted with some actual researching computer scientists. Then you'd know more about what could be coming in this decade. As far as I'm concerned you lack vision, sir. I was only off about 16 years concerning Additive Synthesis gaining momentum, so I think I will be proven right (touching my wooden table).

There has been suggestions in this very thread about VR being a big thing in the immediate future. If so, anyone thinking that people will want to remain being tied to big PCs shouldn't bet on it. If it's the age of wearable computing —VR is about this — computers will move onto the body for starters. It's not like wearable computing is completely new. There are already preferences among those that have tried something like that, even if it has not concerned VR as such.

Personally, I'm more interested in AR, but VR has some cool factor if not being entirely practical for some applications and entirely practical for others.
Old 5th April 2017
  #710
qwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
No, it's not. You should get out more from the studio and get acquainted with some actual researching computer scientists. Then you'd know more about what could be coming in this decade.
OK, I'm not fully up to speed on it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
As far as I'm concerned you lack vision, sir. I was only off about 16 years concerning Additive Synthesis gaining momentum, so I think I will be proven right (touching my wooden table).
Additive synthesis gaining momentum?! That's news to me? (Good news, if it's true.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
There has been suggestions in this very thread about VR being a big thing in the immediate future. If so, anyone thinking that people will want to remain being tied to big PCs shouldn't bet on it. If it's the age of wearable computing —VR is about this — computers will move onto the body for starters. It's not like wearable computing is completely new. There are already preferences among those that have tried something like that, even if it has not concerned VR as such.

Personally, I'm more interested in AR, but VR has some cool factor if not being entirely practical for some applications and entirely practical for others.
Well, what are the applications of these for audio/music production?

Even if you take something like the typical stock PC/Mac keyboard, they're dreadful compared to the old "switch keys" that were used in the 1980s. Just imagine what could be done if the physical interface cost as much as a large jet aeroplane cockpit...
Old 5th April 2017
  #711
Gear Guru
 
UnderTow's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
No, they don't.
Yes they do. You even agree with it yourself below!

Quote:
Physics? We all live with the old model machines right now. Computing is changing, whether you notice this or not. What's at the research forefront now will be commonplace tomorrow.
The laws of physics are not changing.

Quote:
I maintain that what you actually want is computer power, great visuals and flexibility. There's no law saying this must be in the form of a box.
It doesn't matter how small or powerful processors become, the more powerful ones, whatever they might be, will always benefit from better heat dissipation and, considering the way this kind of stuff gets used, from better modularity. So a larger form factor will always benefit.

Why will we keep needing more computing power for audio? Because developers will keep using up the available power with new more CPU intensive algorithms and features. That is just the way these things go. (And I for one am glad that the technology keeps advancing).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Unless you already found your way to this John Gruber blog piece from the links above Daring Fireball: The Mac Pro Lives I suggest you read it. John's reflections on this quaqmire are spot on.
Including this bit: "At some point you came to the conclusion that the 2013 Mac Pro concept was fundamentally flawed."?

So when Apple or one of your other heroes says it it makes perfect sense but if people here say it you say they don't get Apple?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
No, it's not. You should get out more from the studio and get acquainted with some actual researching computer scientists.
I'm not qwe but I used to be head of engineering and R&D of a large IT company and keep up to date. I am pretty knowledgeable about these things. You on the other hand are just parroting marketing departments and show a lack of understanding of even the basics.

Quote:
No, it's not.
"Cloud computing" is just a marketing term. Nothing else. That is what Larry Ellison was talking about. "Cloud computing" has been around since the beginning of computing. Marketeers just gave it a new name. (After "Application Server" didn't quite catch on the way they hoped it would).

Quote:
If so, anyone thinking that people will want to remain being tied to big PCs shouldn't bet on it. If it's the age of wearable computing —VR is about this — computers will move onto the body for starters. It's not like wearable computing is completely new. There are already preferences among those that have tried something like that, even if it has not concerned VR as such.
These things will come (or rather become main stream) but they will not replace professional workstations for the foreseeable future. They will be extra devices that are added to the existing computing ecosystem, not fully replace it.

Alistair
Old 5th April 2017
  #712
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by qwe View Post

Additive synthesis gaining momentum?! That's news to me? (Good news, if it's true.)
I'd say it is, but as a user of Razor I'm biased of course. With the growing range available I think that's a strong indication of real momentum since a few years now. There's beside the already mentioned Razor, also Alchemy, now only in Logic and which use multiple synthesis methods, the Parsec spectral synth in Reason, Image-Line Morphine and Harmor as well as the Arturia Synclavier. Multiple synthesis methods and not only Additive are probably the most common feature in synths. I must have seen dozens of those. As for use, I think people use them often enough though I have no idea how much exactly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by qwe View Post
Well, what are the applications of these for audio/music production?

Even if you take something like the typical stock PC/Mac keyboard, they're dreadful compared to the old "switch keys" that were used in the 1980s. Just imagine what could be done if the physical interface cost as much as a large jet aeroplane cockpit...
I'm not sure if I preferred those old keys at all. Could you type effortlessly on those? I don't remember.

As for how things will be made practical for music I'd assume is at the moment too early to tell. I can only reflect and deduct with some help on the bits I get from time to time from people that know more about this than I do, but I can imagine VR techniques presenting the music data in extremely flexible ways and allowing for unique interactions with it.

I see this field growing into something within a few years, but I'm not convinced what the established companies will present will be what gets this started for real. Likely it will be hungry newcomers, the game changers. I believe this will happen.

As for more practical applications of VR and audio imagine for example editing trouble spots in a 3d-presented FFT analysis of the audio without being fixated to a specific display size, being able to zoom into different parts in high resolution while maintaining the big zoomed out perspective. Not impossible compared to something like that existing today on more normal displays, but immersion adds some new possibilities.

I can also imagine you could combine tactile interfaces at your fingertips that correspond in placement in space, or seems to correspond, with gear presented visually enforcing tactile and audial sensations to form a cohesive experience interfacing to musical (or other) processes. If that's more attractive than what is there now depends on how well this is done. Some products will come and fail as always.

Somewhat this is much like what is already true with our current music tech today, but with the added unique features of VR, like immersion and making audiovisual and tactile senses part of not only the audio material you're working with but also a big part if the interaction itself.

I think though, that for real work AR might have more interesting properties, where the data, in this case musical or audial data, move into the physical space we already operate in and this data can be operated upon.

I have a less clear vision for AR actually, but it's main theme concerns interfacing with the data you're working with but with perhaps more nuanced controllers where information go both ways and you can feel and hear the sound as you adjust it or otherwise work with it.

Maybe the audio, our data, we listen to today can be given a more flexible presence in our studios. Maybe, as you are being scanned in real time, the controls you use can change depending on where you are in the room, or be operated upon from a distance, or audio related processes can start when you do certain things without having to touch the usual controls.

Much of the technology is already here for that, the question becomes more about imagination, what can be commodified and made sell-able (and therefore made), the potential interest and markets for those and the investments needed to be able to make such flexible products (I'd imagine them as that anyway).

The borders between our physical space and the data being augmented in it are somewhat more blurry compared to VR. If people would want this kind of thing would depend on attractive pioneering products being made real — maybe not fully completed, but good enough to have lure — already before there's a market. Pioneering products.

Even if I'm completely off here on which areas will see developments first or at all, I do think there will be at least considerable interface enhancements and there will be more distributed computing in local networks, rather than only on the internet, i e "in the cloud". Computers, also powerful, will come also in other forms than the classic computer forms and the handhelds.

I think many of the bad sides of current net services are that they require you to use a service placed elsewhere in the world. I think we will see more locally distributed services, even if net services will likely remain working for co-operation over distance and such things.

Last edited by Mikael B; 25th April 2017 at 11:21 AM..
Old 5th April 2017
  #713
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post

I'm not qwe but I used to be head of engineering and R&D of a large IT company and keep up to date. I am pretty knowledgeable about these things. You on the other hand are just parroting marketing departments and show a lack of understanding of even the basics.
I'm not parroting anything but relaying researching computer scientists I know. They know what IT departments know very little about, they're building the future unknown to most outsiders ( I have only been given general info) though I assume some of these things are well known.

I have not at all argued against processor physics. Why would I do that? You just made a straw argument because it was convenient. Why you prefer to mark up words rather than discussing these matters I don't know. Please don't attribute meanings to what I write that are not there. I was NOT ruling out a new fresh Mac Pro. But that desktop will disappear in a few years, Apple is disagreeing with that, yes. Unless they also come with new products more in the line of what I imagine in the lifetime of these new machines. Do we know they won't do that because they intend to make new Mac Pros? How?

I guess I did a bad job then making clear that what I mean is that instead of looking at the heart of the studio as that big powerful computer where everything is done (for some) "in the box" we will see more flexible outboard gear, like for instance the Soundgrid servers and other similar solutions that places the studio network at the core of what I'm talking about. Such a local network is in a nutshell a simple illustration of distributed computing in music production today. You see that, right? Even if it's 2 computers in boxes more or less? The LAN. We can distribute some processes in the studio, even plug-ins.

Music producers, not you necessarily, but new fresh people will ask more and more from their machines. Buying big computer boxes, the old model, is very expensive and it's very possible, for the reasons you just mentioned that those big shiny boxes won't live up to expectations. People will want more.

I've been there myself. So what are the solutions? I say one of them is distributed computing. That means many modular boxes, possibly more specialized and in other form factors than traditional computers. I think these can outperform your big boxes at a lower cost.

I think distributed computing is here right now and the change is here. You just don't see it because it looks familiar. It won't reshape reality. It will enhance it. Boxes will stay and be complemented and some will abandon big computer boxes as the core of doing things with music.

Yes, Apple say they are making those new machines in 2018. I don't think these will end what I'm talking about here, though they will be a heavy influence no doubt.

Last edited by Mikael B; 6th April 2017 at 12:09 AM..
Old 5th April 2017
  #714
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post
Nope. Apple are now even admitting themselves they simply got it wrong with the Mac pro and will be going for a modular design in the future. They are finally doing what they should have done from the start: Listen to their customers and give them what they want.

Apple clearly disagree and rightly so: The laws of physics and thermal dissipation can not be beaten. For performance computing, a desktop, or rather a larger case design, will always get you further than a consumer design with a size restriction.

They say they miscalculated some aspects, yes.

Yes, it's interesting Apple both pre-announce this (a first I think) and appear to listen to what you say is critique. I think I agree with that part, but not with your conclusion.

I've also said elsewhere in this thread that Apple do listen. Remember? All I said they will likely not build their boxes to user specifications. That's different from listening. Where's your proof these boxes will be built to user specification? Certainly not among those quotes in the article.

Also, what I have been talking about are modular designs and the studio being many parts operating together. So that's a key word right there. Modular.

I hopefully didn't say that computers can't be part of this process from the beginning. Obviously they will be at first and for quite a while. It's a bad thing to say things will disappear. That was one word too many if I said it like that. I do think these "big shiny boxes" will loose their role as the only way of doing things demanding heavy computing and I think distributed local computing will be part of this happening.

Now, you can go ahead and say I'm wrong.
Old 6th April 2017
  #715
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login's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
question: if someone put an iPad in your hands in a Tesla that had no steering wheel or gas/brake pedals, and set you off at 120kph, and said to you 'ok you have to control this vehicle you are in with this on screen app, drag left right to steer, up to accelerate, fully down to brake, those buttons for indicators..... If right now you don't trust your life with this method of 'remoting', perhaps because you think it'll lose contact with the host, or be laggy, or pick up that random unintended thumb, well that's how I feel about how well integrated the current distributed 'new computing' is, and frankly I don't trust it with doing a quick cover version of Rick Astley's Never Gonna Give You Up in Logic X let alone controlling the chunk of steel you might be tearing down the highway in.
Well I would expect the Tesla to drive it self so I can enjoy netflix on the iPad.
Old 6th April 2017
  #716
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Scarily enough, that's exactly how cars work these days. They just give you a different interface so you have the simulacrum of control, but it's all drive by wire.

Anyway, let's get back to discussing macs, then have mikael b chime in with some pedantic disdainful commentary that makes one wonder whether he is a mustacioed spinster school marm travelled back in time to rap us on the knuckles with a ruler for having deigned to comment in "his" thread, leaving us to question whether humanity would in fact be better off extinct.

Or we could just rejoice in being alive during such a miraculous time, and find solace in our community of like-minded artists.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
MikaelB i see what you're getting at with the distributed thing, what I would say is, jesus I wish someone would just get the 'star trek LCARS' ipad remote thing combined with powerful Mac working properly. I have tried various routes with this, Touchable controlling Ableton, Pro Tools remote/Eucon. It all seems very hacky, and involves WAY TOO MUCH of the whole 'sign in to your specific app store account' 'please enter your store password' 'this application hasn't been authorised for this machine' 'cannot find host on network' 'cannot find remote' 'please update your OS to 10.12.4' etc etc

This type of 10-hour battery touch surface remote combined with studio computer thing would be awesome if it worked, and you could walk from instrument to instrument, into the next room (where you might have the drum kit) etc etc and managed to do the job of 2 or 3 people at once because the DAW has been distributed across useful handhelds/wearables. I haven't had this experience so far, probably because Apple's approach to the iPad has precisely been so consumer oriented that 'what'll do for consumers' e.g. Angry Birds and annoying popups for in-app purchases, is incompatible with situations like a working studio that needs stuff to behave and function 100% of the time
Old 6th April 2017
  #717
Deleted 46dc28f
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Quote:
Originally Posted by login View Post
Well I would expect the Tesla to drive it self so I can enjoy netflix on the iPad.
Sloth Mode.
Old 6th April 2017
  #718
Gear Maniac
Well, if we jump back to the original thread topic, something seems to be happening:

New Mac Pros (complete modular redesign) and Pro Level iMacs on the Way
Old 6th April 2017
  #719
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nativeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluefonia View Post
Well, if we jump back to the original thread topic, something seems to be happening:

New Mac Pros (complete modular redesign) and Pro Level iMacs on the Way
Sure, something seems to be happening - expect if the pricing will be so ridiculous that people won't buy it and go for a Hackintosh or PC DAW instead.
Old 6th April 2017
  #720
qwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 808KickDrum View Post
Scarily enough, that's exactly how cars work these days. They just give you a different interface so you have the simulacrum of control, but it's all drive by wire.
Only, isn't that actually more reliable than direct mechanical control?

And then there's the Eurofighter which requires fly-by-wire or it's too instable. Military spec embedded systems with multiple redundancy are of course slightly different to iPads...
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