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Tim Cook on Mac Desktop commitment Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 5th January 2018
  #1561
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philter View Post
If Apple was trying to make a business based on their computer sales and not phones, the story would be different. Their phone business is propping up a lackluster computer business. Is it tired nonsense or is Apple losing serious share among music creatives to Windows and customacs? Hard to know without real numbers, but the customac movement is big and longtime mac-only DAWs have been crossing over to Windows for years now (MOTU, PT).
All of this are great arguments for spinning off the computer division, if there is one, back into "Apple Computer", wouldn't you all agree?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philter View Post

The lack of a PCIe bus totally sucks for actual commercial recording studios, who almost all run PT HD or HDX systems that rely on PCIe cards. The lack of an expandable case sucks for people trying to build a neat and sturdy work rig. My own OSX machine is rackmounted with hot swap drive trays along the front, and far more functional than the absurd urn shaped thing that Apple puked up when they finally jumped the shark. It also cost about $1500, not $3k or $5k or whatever other crazy numbers people are throwing around. I have literally never heard a piece of music ever that needed a $5000 all in one computer, or would benefit from one. With Apple you pay huge money for stuff you don't need (eg dual expensive video cards) in a form factor completely unsuitable for a commercial audio production space..
I can fully understand that, but I do think that in the near future there will be newer Thunderbolt 3 systems that will grow into recording and mixing studios and I'm not at all certain everyone will like to have the audio interfaces and related gear stuck inside the box.

"Everything inside" is a concept on it's way out where this is possible and more flexible. I imagine there will be a long transition period, so I'm not at all sure how this will play out. But I'm pretty sure those of you who wants everything to be just like it was ten years ago will have to adjust to some changes. I don't know which changes exactly, but it's unrealistic everything will stay very similar for decades. Of course, some hardware concepts will remain relevant also in the future, but even so there will be an hardware design evolution also outside of the chips themselves.

Most of this is conjecture of course. What do you guys think? I'm sure some of you have better up-to-date sources than myself.

Last edited by Mikael B; 5th January 2018 at 01:09 AM..
Old 5th January 2018
  #1562
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
Pro users again and again have requested some kind of Mac Mini-plus, or a half sized cheesegrater updated with thunderbolt and ssd slots and 3rd party GPU support, it really ISN'T ROCKET SURGERY. When a handful of amateurs on hackintosh forums can knock up golden builds that use newer components than anything in official Apple computers, I'm sure Apple's own engineers could make something suitable given that they're not working around all the obfuscation that blocks hackintoshes from working.
Hear, hear!
Old 5th January 2018
  #1563
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jwh1192's Avatar
i miss the days of ther 9600 with 6 slots .. !! i fully agree with MR Jones !!! nicely said .. now get out of my HEad .. it is crowded enough in there !! LOL
Old 5th January 2018
  #1564
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MusiKLover's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusiKLover View Post
It's nice to see things actually get done in this thread! In addition to your Kontakt query, it has helped me to realize I really do not need/want an iMac Pro. I'm scoping out the 4.2GHz i7 iMac now. Happen to know of any place that does trade-ins? I have the original iMac Retina, though it is an i5, 3.5GHz, plenty of RAM, SSD. UAD helps, but the Kaby Lake sounds smokin'! The i5 is pretty silent, so I am moderately concerned about fan noise if I make the purchase. I think I can deal. I'm in no rush.
Certainly on hold, and it has everything to do with Intel. I hope the new Xeon W's aren't too affected by Spectre & Meltdown. I wouldn't make a move until these issues are resolved. Thus far, my machine hasn't been, though there could be more to come. There's a difference between a mitigation and a fix; 10.3.2 mitigated one of the two.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1565
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
I just don't get the thinking behind this. All other PC machines on the market come with PCI-E slots, it hasn't gone anywhere at all.
I already had you down as PCIe supporter.

My point was not everyone is likely to want to maintain Status Quo. I feel open for a distributed system in the studio, especially so with more multi-core CPUs with heat dissipation and all. To me the idea of "everything inside" at all costs is akin to wanting external audio effects to be mounted physically inside the mixing console —*which has some merit of course —*instead of being externalized in a rack. There may still be benefits for a computer to have stuff like graphics cards inside, I get that, but it's not as clear cut as it used to be, simply because externalizing to the extent that is possible now, wasn't just a few years back.

I don't really feel experiences from laptops are relevant here as this discussion is about the Mac desktops. Obviously when travelling lots of externals can be a nuisance (yet is a reality). Much less so in a studio installation with multiple video (and audio) monitors, cable patch bays, cables fixed to the environment and what not.

Fact remains that distributed computing can be more flexible for stationary installations. This may, or may not, be an advantage for a portion of producers/studios.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1566
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UnderTow's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
To me the idea of "everything inside" at all costs
This is a straw man argument: As Henry Jones Sr wrote, PCI-E slots and plenty of external ports are not mutually exclusive.

Quote:
I don't really feel experiences from laptops are relevant here as this discussion is about the Mac desktops. Obviously when travelling lots of externals can be a nuisance (yet is a reality). Much less so in a studio installation with multiple video (and audio) monitors, cable patch bays, cables fixed to the environment and what not.
But there is no advantage to removing the PCI-E slots. It makes no sense from a professional perspective especially for a studio computer.

Quote:
Fact remains that distributed computing can be more flexible for stationary installations. This may, or may not, be an advantage for a portion of producers/studios.
Again, this is the same flawed argument because nothing stops Apple having both internal PCI-E slots and lots of external ports. This seems to be the basis for you considering the thrash can a pro machine but the thinking is flawed as it is based on a false dichotomy.

Alistair
Old 5th January 2018
  #1567
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
:
My point was not everyone is likely to want to maintain Status Quo.
Which is fine, as long as it brings clear advantages and only affects a small user group in a negative way. Progression is good as long as it has a clear positive balance.

Quote:
I feel open for a distributed system in the studio, especially so with more multi-core CPUs with heat dissipation and all. To me the idea of "everything inside" at all costs is akin to wanting external audio effects to be mounted physically inside the mixing console —*which has some merit of course —*instead of being externalized in a rack. There may still be benefits for a computer to have stuff like graphics cards inside, I get that, but it's not as clear cut as it used to be, simply because externalizing to the extent that is possible now, wasn't just a few years back.
But the "everything inside" has been status quo AND functional for decades in the computer world, while "external audio effects" has been status quo in the studio for decades - and only has been resolved digitally. External effects walls are slowly disappearing *because* the external setup is a big hassle. More and more producers and mix engineers tend to do more ITB because of the ease of use with a barely noticeable quality of sound (I really do not want to discuss that here).
Externalizing computer components has exactly what benefit? It is more expensive, requires individual cooling solutions, more cabling, less choice, more expensive replacement when dead, more power supplies (wall warts anyone?), components limitations (GPU etc), more compatibility questions, more space and harder to effectively position (rack mounting).
All of that so it looks good?

Quote:
Fact remains that distributed computing can be more flexible for stationary installations. This may, or may not, be an advantage for a portion of producers/studios.
No, every customer we have prefer one system to do it all, no matter whether that is audio, video, 3D, or deep learning.
The only exceptions are render farms (obviously) and video wall clusters (I/O limitation of 24 4K GPU outputs per system ).

Last edited by DAW PLUS; 5th January 2018 at 10:37 AM..
Old 5th January 2018
  #1568
Tui
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Tui's Avatar
The last time I checked, PCIe and Thunderbolt were *not* the same, in spite of what the marketing would have you believe. Throughput of PCIe is still considerably larger.

PCI Express vs. Thunderbolt – How much performance drop of your GPU you will have if you put it in eGPU – Thunderbolt macOS Setup – External Graphics Card Forum
Old 5th January 2018
  #1569
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tui View Post
The last time I checked, PCIe and Thunderbolt were *not* the same, in spite of what the marketing would have you believe. Throughput of PCIe is still considerably larger.

PCI Express vs. Thunderbolt – How much performance drop of your GPU you will have if you put it in eGPU – Thunderbolt macOS Setup – External Graphics Card Forum
Well, it is no rocket science:
Thunderbolt = 40Gbit = 5GB/s.
PCIe x16 (lanes) = 15,75GB/s.
As most GPU's are fine with 8 lanes instead of 16, they use up to 7.9GB/s.
Now, most current boards have at least 1 slot with 16 lanes, typically 3 x 8 lanes added as well.
Not that many people need that, but the whole marketing around TB is a hype, connecting "hundreds of devices". I really would like to see 5 different devices added in a chain without issues.
That doesn't mean I don't like Thunderbolt - for external devices it can be the best protocol provided all manufacturers get their act together.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1570
Tui
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Tui's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
That doesn't mean I don't like Thunderbolt - for external devices it can be the best protocol provided all manufacturers get their act together.
Well, yeah, TB is a nice protocol and has been fast and stable here. However, it is not an all-out replacement for PCIe. Cost for anything to do with TB is still very high, so that's one downside.

I'm just generally amazed how the tech-press parrots marketing-speak without even checking if the basics are true.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1571
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post
This is a straw man argument: As Henry Jones Sr wrote, PCI-E slots and plenty of external ports are not mutually exclusive.

But there is no advantage to removing the PCI-E slots. It makes no sense from a professional perspective especially for a studio computer.
I see how you mean though calling it "straw man" is a stretch. Internal ports adds to the size and energy consumption of the machine. I would think there is a limitation on how many external ports (TB3) you can have on a board at the same time as you got PCIe plus there's also the case of energy. What boards on the market now have, say three PCIe and four TB3 ports? Or six and six? Can these boards power everything typically connected?

If I could find such a board for a decent price I'd include it in my Hackintosh build.

What about external PCIe? No advantage?
Old 5th January 2018
  #1572
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
All of that so it looks good?

No, every customer we have prefer one system to do it all, no matter whether that is audio, video, 3D, or deep learning.
No, to get big burning boxes out of the way so the interfacing technology can take center stage.

I'm not a client of yours and I'm very interested in not having everything in one single box in my studio.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1573
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lowkey's Avatar
 

So we all have to use laptops as thick as the 2011 MacBook pros because you want to plug in an Ethernet cable without using an adapter?

Yeah right.

The fact that you can connect the existing MacBook pros to USBa, FireWire 400&800, HDMI, Thunderbolt, Ethernet, VGA, SD, USB3 through one single port makes the machine far more flexible.

And while it's a completely different use case, my MacBook, despite being 900 grams and thinner than a biscuit can also connect to any of those legacy connectors. I'd rather travel with that than my old 2011 MBP.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
I just don't get the thinking behind this. All other PC machines on the market come with PCI-E slots, it hasn't gone anywhere at all. There seems to be some kind of assumption going on that we should all accept the move towards externalized boxes for what used to come inside our computers. Does anyone here really think it's elegant seeing a Macbook Pro with a thunderbolt cable connected to a huge steel box with grill and fans containing a 1080 GTX?

Our audio interfaces already had breakout boxes that connected back to the PCI-E cards, I don't really see what has changed other than we have to pay yet again to replace things that were working fine, just to swap the PCI-E card and it's breakout cable/box with a Thunderbolt socket and breakout cable/box. Which I guess I wouldn't mind if they actually stuck to something for Thunderbolt. In half of the space of time that we've had PCI-E slots, we've been through 3 iterations of Thunderbolt already, requiring expensive convertor dongles to make our 'slightly old thunderbolt' devices work with a 'slightly too new thunderbolt' machine. I'm just not sure where the progress is here, especially when for audio users the onboard cards were plenty fast enough for 99.999% of uses.

If I sound like I'm ranting without experience of our wonderful new external/thunderbolt future, well I have a top model Macbook Pro 2017 here and for my general portable work I have to carry 7 types of dongle in my bag. It is an utterly hateful experience, and the most appallingly stupid thing Apple ever did to their computer line. Every other Mac I've had was a thing of joy, but this 'damn, did I remember to bring dongle #5 ' experience has pushed me right to the edge of browsing self build PCs and chunky Ethernet/USB-A port Dell laptops. The pro's didn't leave Apple, Apple told them loud and clear to go and get f*cked.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1574
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tui View Post
Well, yeah, TB is a nice protocol and has been fast and stable here. However, it is not an all-out replacement for PCIe.
Absolutely, that is why I stated "for external devices".


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
Fact remains that distributed computing can be more flexible for stationary installations. This may, or may not, be an advantage for a portion of producers/studios.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
No, every customer we have prefer one system to do it all, no matter whether that is audio, video, 3D, or deep learning.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
I'm not a client of yours and I'm very interested in not having everything in one single box in my studio.
That is fine, I merely answered the red part from my perspective.

Quote:
No, to get big burning boxes out of the way so the interfacing technology can take center stage.
I really don't understand what exactly you mean with this, and what it practically means?
Old 5th January 2018
  #1575
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Joe Porto's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
I just don't get the thinking behind this. All other PC machines on the market come with PCI-E slots, it hasn't gone anywhere at all. There seems to be some kind of assumption going on that we should all accept the move towards externalized boxes for what used to come inside our computers.#5 ' experience has pushed me right to the edge of browsing self build PCs and chunky Ethernet/USB-A port Dell laptops. The pro's didn't leave Apple, Apple told them loud and clear to go and get f*cked.
Whatever Apple has assumed, or "told" users, their business model seems to be working. They are one of the most successful companies in the world.

PC's are certainly an option. We have choices. Just not with Apple.

I'd have already moved to PC if I wasn't so attached to Logic. I've already switched from Apogee Symphony to UAD Apollo. I'm slowly working with Studio One, but I always fall back to Logic because I know it so well.

Back when Apple was popular with the pro A/V crowd, the company was hanging by a string. They even had to be bailed out my MS to keep them afloat.

I don't fault Apple. They seem to make the right business discussions, even if it has left some of us behind. Although, I still question the decision to put the charging port on the bottom of their wireless mouse.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1576
have to say.. other then carrying a few extra bits around... a nice macbook pro with a 16 inch wacom cintiq pen/touch screen and external GPU box with a 1080 in it.. is pretty attractive as a mobile setup.. if a bit chunky.. but powerful
my home machine is a 28 core xeon with 3 nvidia GPU's and 64 gigs ram... ohh also running 10.12.6 osx.. gotta love hackintosh.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1577
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by DAW PLUS View Post
That is fine, I merely answered the red part from my perspective.

I really don't understand what exactly you mean with this, and what it practically means?
Yes, I welcome your perspective of course. I just don't necessarily share preferences with your clients.

What I mean with that is that because I'm interested in digital work load distribution, also for audio effects and virtual instruments, it makes sense to want to explore a distributed studio also in the digital realm. To me, a big mean box full of wonderful things is not necessarily the most attractive, interesting and practical machine, certainly not in a main position (which is perhaps a separate issue). While I can imagine working on a 5k iMac of some sort, that's still a single box, prone to fan noise if nothing else. Can't tell at the moment how interesting the iMac Pro would be.

I'm far from ready to make purchase plans but I imagine multiple computers, like one main audio and others more focused on specfic tasks, like Soundgrid servers for some of the processing and maybe instrument computers as well. Digital audio streams and MIDI over the (wired) network.

If everything isn't happening in one computer, it's only natural to not be held to old assumptions. There's nothing to say that a box with internal PCIe couldn't fit into such an studio, so it's not a set of ideas exclusive of that.

I see at least three video monitors in front of me as well as audio monitors. The computers are likely not within hand reach from where I work, though the keyboard/trackpad may be. There's a mixing console/controller of sorts, other controllers, instruments and other more musically practical things nearby. I don't feel confined by how things typically have been done. I'm interested to learn from existing ones, or those previous I've done some work in or know about, as well as I'm into embracing new possibilities.

This is nothing unique to me. I see and meet more people thinking a little like I do about music computing. All approaches interests me, if not for adapting to at least understand.

It's wonderful to learn a little about how all of you producers do your stuff, so I find your arguments stimulating.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1578
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
This is the argument I've seen being made over and over, that the new machine has the flexibility to do it all from a single port. But it's just not true, you don't connect the new port to these legacy devices. You connect it to a dongle to convert it to the legacy device, then you connect a legacy cable from the dongle to the device. The world is still full of these so called 'legacy' devices. Does anyone have a printer yet that comes with a USB-C port? Have you seen a television that comes with a USB-C or Thunderbolt input to feed it with a signal. We're not networking via USB-C connections, not now, not ever. Ethernet will remain the method of connection for high speed data between machines and networks. You can't just buy an off the shelf Thunderbolt 3 to Ethernet 20metre cable. If you're a photographer on the go, great, now you have to remember to bring your SD card reader with you to copy files to the computer.
All legitimate and valid concerns.
Old 5th January 2018
  #1579
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lowkey's Avatar
 

I own a 2013rMBP. My gf just bought a 2017 model, rather than inherit my computer as a hand me down specifically because it was thinner and lighter. Apple have just made more money in the last quarter than they have ever before, betting on the fact that there are more purchasers like my partner than there are like you. It's a laptop. And they only make a very small number of models, unlike the high volume, low profit manufacturers. Thickness matters to many more than the shape of the plug being stuck into the side. Apple are hardly going to introduce their next iteration of laptop and say "hey it's thicker than the last model, but we put in an Ethernet port" Anyways it's meant to be a desktop thread so enough about that I guess.

Metric halo, should they ever actually release their 3D card, will be based on USBc connection. That will mean an adapter for me to use it with my 2013rMBP. But as I pointed out, it already needs adapeters to operate in my studio, just as any laptop I've ever owned has.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Jones Sr View Post
Actually, in between the 2010 and 2017 models, I had a MBP 2015 15" Retina, which required one dongle to use Ethernet. The difference was, I carried one dongle with me (rarely needed when using Wifi so it wasn't a deal breaker if it had been forgotten). I think with the thickness of ethernet, it wasn't too unreasonable for them to slim it down and require this one dongle for the job. The rest of the ports remained on the machine. I would have kept this machine but there is a fundamental and unfixed issue with the 2014-2016 era MBP SSD and Pro Tools which is well documented on the web, meaning I had to ditch the model.

The current Macbook Pro's are not really that much thinner than the retina model, if you look at the shape of the body on the current one it has a tapered shape which gives the illusion of being much thinner but the core shape is still similar to the retina Macbook Pro. One of the biggest complaints I have, and have seen others make is of the keyboard in the new machines, and how it has passed beyond the convenience of a thinner laptop into the inconvenience of bad typing experience and unreliability.



This is the argument I've seen being made over and over, that the new machine has the flexibility to do it all from a single port. But it's just not true, you don't connect the new port to these legacy devices. You connect it to a dongle to convert it to the legacy device, then you connect a legacy cable from the dongle to the device. The world is still full of these so called 'legacy' devices. Does anyone have a printer yet that comes with a USB-C port? Have you seen a television that comes with a USB-C or Thunderbolt input to feed it with a signal. We're not networking via USB-C connections, not now, not ever. Ethernet will remain the method of connection for high speed data between machines and networks. You can't just buy an off the shelf Thunderbolt 3 to Ethernet 20metre cable. If you're a photographer on the go, great, now you have to remember to bring your SD card reader with you to copy files to the computer.

So what we can conclude about this is that yeah it's great that the new ports *can* be converted to just about anything else, but, they *HAVE TO BE* converted to something else to function. The only case I've seen so far where this is avoided is using new hard drives or flash keys that come with their own USB-C ports. I have seen nothing else in the world of connections and peripherals. So from here the experience of using a Macbook is going to forever involve dongles or docks if you expect to use everything from ethernet to hdmi to printers to scanners to SD card readers etc.

I appreciate a light laptop in the bag, but I don't care about shaving another 1mm off the thickness, I have no idea what the drive is behind that. People get bothered by the weight, not the thickness, it is possible to keep the MBP the same thickness as the retina models and still shave weight off with component selection and good design. Lately the experience has just been one of compromises, the thinness now causing a cascade of other issues like loss of ports, a smaller battery (yes the battery in my 2017 MBP is dreadful compared to previous models), crappy keyboard, poor cooling, limited choices of gpu...
Old 6th January 2018
  #1580
Sky
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Sky's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
All of this are great arguments for spinning off the computer division, if there is one, back into "Apple Computer", wouldn't you all agree?

I can fully understand that, but I do think that in the near future there will be newer Thunderbolt 3 systems that will grow into recording and mixing studios and I'm not at all certain everyone will like to have the audio interfaces and related gear stuck inside the box.

"Everything inside" is a concept on it's way out where this is possible and more flexible. I imagine there will be a long transition period, so I'm not at all sure how this will play out. But I'm pretty sure those of you who wants everything to be just like it was ten years ago will have to adjust to some changes.

[...]

Most of this is conjecture of course. What do you guys think? I'm sure some of you have better up-to-date sources than myself.
Conjecture sure, but you offer some interesting points Mikael. Apple could revisit the 3rd-party licensing model it abandoned in the 90s. Companies that are custom-building DAW PCs have the best understanding of the professional audio production market; license a few of them to build the right hardware for vertical applications, and simply ensure that Mac OS runs perfectly on those blessed platforms. Apple could then focus on building laptops and iMacs for its mainstream customers.

PCIe uniquely serves today's Pro Tools HD/HDX users, as well as providing an industry standard for I/O and storage expansion, GPU, etc. But the landscape is changing. SSD technology can pop into a motherboard slot just like RAM, audio professionals are gradually adopting TB interfaces, etc. While today I just want my cheesegrater with Thunderbolt and 1090 video card added, I'll watch for what may become more desirable technology in a few years.

I think you mentioned a good one in another post - easily remotable computer. I can imagine CPU, storage, video and interface as lego blocks on an ethernet LAN, with only fan-less interfaces and displays in the studio.

Sky
Old 6th January 2018
  #1581
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stratology's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sky View Post
Apple could revisit the 3rd-party licensing model it abandoned in the 90s.
Haha, sure, it almost bankrupted them, so they will totally try that again...

Seriously, though, one of the main advantages Apple keeps pointing out is integration between hardware and software. Licensing software to 3rd party hardware manufacturers would compromise quality, and they know it.
Old 6th January 2018
  #1582
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Crazy4Jazz's Avatar
 

Quote:
The crux of my argument is that for a company the size of Apple, there's absolutely zero risk involved in developing a desktop computer.
With all due respect that just cannot be true. There is no such thing as product development with "zero risk". There are myriad costs involved with development and fabrication. New Apple products probably have an extremely intricate path from inception to market involving design, testing, prototypes, outsourcing various aspects, parts fabrication, etc. etc. I don't know the business but I would not presume to suggest something so naive.

Ultimately, the cost to develop and bring a product to market must be justified by projected sales numbers. With respect to desktop computers the numbers just aren't there of Apple would have done it already.

Large business like hospitals and banks are not using Macs. They are too expensive and wholly unnecessary and their programs are Windows and PC based.

The number of audio and video professionals that will purchase a high end computer is simply not that high and, many have already changed to PCs. The days when PCs could not compete because dedicated software for audio and video production was all Mac based are long gone. Nearly everything can run on either Mac or PC.

What is left for Mac are the long time users who like the OS and are comfortable with it, know its reliable and want to continue using it. But for many of those users, they are not running large scare commercial studios but smaller personalized studios. Many are musicians that do small ensembles or some sort of electro pop music that simply does not demand excessive amounts of computing power. They are using Macbook Pros and such.

Even the big commercial studios are not all Mac anymore. At one time they all needed Macs to run Pro Tools. That has not been true for some time.

Suffice it to say that there is certainly risk involved. And, besides, the iMac Pro seems like a great solution. Whatever the complaints about it may be, they almost certainly are not based on real world usage since almost nobody has one.

A bit too much whining and pontificating going on if you ask me.

I want to add one thing: Not only is there not zero risk but it is hugely involved and expensive for Apple to put out a product. They need Board approval and must show that the product could be profitable. Development, prototypes, fabrication, advertising on that scale is enormously expensive. This is a huge company, they don't do personalized computers. They do mass marketing. Get it?
Old 6th January 2018
  #1583
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy4Jazz View Post
The number of audio and video professionals that will purchase a high end computer is simply not that high and, many have already changed to PCs. The days when PCs could not compete because dedicated software for audio and video production was all Mac based are long gone. Nearly everything can run on either Mac or PC.
This is exactly "it" in a nutshell!

The "niche" market for Mac Machines used solely for audio production i.e. Trash-can (Thrash-Can? )/desktops/towers with lots of expandability/flexibility, is so incredibly small, compared to the "mass consumer" market Apple used to be only too happy to let the various PC makers control.
In the past, Apple were perfectly fine with catering only to the "elite" who demanding stability, unique capabilities, high efficiency etc, something PCs (or rather Windows) sorely lacked vs price.
However, entities such as new boards of directors, stock holders, new CEO, all saw the writing on the wall. Continue to cater to a very specialized segment of industry (video, then audio) and go bankrupt or.. try to play catch-up to the many PC makers (and Microsoft) who hunkered down and moved their products into Macintosh land as far as capabilities goes. It's all about profit.. and profit reside in the general consumer market... which while Mac have made inroads, they are still way behind in Sher sales due to their prices and their wish to still be seen as an "elite" company (similar to Dell).
And no, I'm not anti Mac.. I currently use Logic Pro X, hence, I have to use a Mac.
Old 6th January 2018
  #1584
Deleted User
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy4Jazz View Post
Ultimately, the cost to develop and bring a product to market must be justified by projected sales numbers. With respect to desktop computers the numbers just aren't there of Apple would have done it already.
Mac Mini, iMac, iMac Pro, upcoming modular Mac Pro. I have a hard time seeing Apple maintain all of these product lines in the declining desktop segment.
Old 7th January 2018
  #1585
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sid Falck View Post
…In the past, Apple were perfectly fine with catering only to the "elite" who demanding stability, unique capabilities, high efficiency etc, something PCs (or rather Windows) sorely lacked vs price.

However, entities such as new boards of directors, stock holders, new CEO, all saw the writing on the wall. Continue to cater to a very specialized segment of industry (video, then audio) and go bankrupt or.. try to play catch-up to the many PC makers (and Microsoft) who hunkered down and moved their products into Macintosh land as far as capabilities goes. It's all about profit.. and profit reside in the general consumer market...
While that may be true, this discussion started about a year ago with some inofficial focus and statements on Apple's dedication to Pro Mac users.
It makes sense for Apple to invest in Pro machines, because those are some of the tools with which the content for the consumers is produced and in case you missed it Apple have been getting into original content since a few years.

Even if Apple won't make big money on Pro machines sales alone, it will likely build them profits in the long run. Business strategy is a long game.
Old 7th January 2018
  #1586
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael B View Post
While that may be true, this discussion started about a year ago with some inofficial focus and statements on Apple's dedication to Pro Mac users.
Well, that's my point..yet here we are about a year later still discussing the "impending" demise of the Apple desktop

In all seriousness though, I do totally get your point, and I don't for a second think that apple will completly abandon the desktop, but I DO think that catering at all costs to the "elite" (and by "elite" I mean high-end users such as major studios and graphics houses et all) is no longer a priority for Apple, PRECISELY because it's a long term business strategy. Compared to the $$$ they make, by comparison, on fairly generic MB, MBP & iMacs, the money they make on the sales off of high-end desktops in relatively miniscule.
Obviously just my opinion.
Old 7th January 2018
  #1587
Lives for gear
 
Lady Gaia's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sid Falck View Post
Compared to the $$$ they make, by comparison, on fairly generic MB, MBP & iMacs, the money they make on the sales off of high-end desktops in relatively miniscule.
Having high-end hardware available makes it more likely that professional software targeting relevant industries will be made for your platform. That leads to broader use by people with less rigorous needs, whether you're mixing audio, editing video, or writing code. Push all the high-end professionals elsewhere and you lose both the caché and the associated software ecosystem.
Old 7th January 2018
  #1588
Sky
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Sky's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stratology View Post
Haha, sure, it almost bankrupted them, so they will totally try that again...

Seriously, though, one of the main advantages Apple keeps pointing out is integration between hardware and software. Licensing software to 3rd party hardware manufacturers would compromise quality, and they know it.
I'm not so sure that Apple's 90s experiment applies today. Apple is currently not in the game for a professional desktop PC, by their own admission. Well, they say they are in the game, release dates and specs TBD.

In the 90s, Macs were their bread and butter. Today mobile products are the main focus, and computers are healthy in the home / soho / mobile worker market with laptops and iMacs.

So a hardware partner would be only for desktops in defined vertical applications. Apple would maintain full control of Mac OS along with the bulk of their computer business, and would set a high bar for any partner they sign. I can't imagine one of the established "audio PC" manufacturers screwing this up if it were ever offered to them.

But of course this is all speculation. In the meantime, we use our cheesegraters and watch for 2018... 2019... TBD.

Sky
Old 7th January 2018
  #1589
Sky
Lives for gear
 
Sky's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sid Falck View Post
Well, that's my point..yet here we are about a year later still discussing the "impending" demise of the Apple desktop

In all seriousness though, I do totally get your point, and I don't for a second think that apple will completly abandon the desktop, but I DO think that catering at all costs to the "elite" (and by "elite" I mean high-end users such as major studios and graphics houses et all) is no longer a priority for Apple, PRECISELY because it's a long term business strategy. Compared to the $$$ they make, by comparison, on fairly generic MB, MBP & iMacs, the money they make on the sales off of high-end desktops in relatively miniscule.
Obviously just my opinion.
This supports my earlier speculation about Apple finding a hardware partner. Apple today can neatly segment their computer market into "non-elite" (iMac, laptop) and "elite" (desktop) users. The non-elite segment seems healthy and very much core to Apple's business. The elite segment has been a challenge in recent years. Either Apple tools up to cover this segment, or partners out. I agree with you that Apple is not likely to abandon this segment.

Sky
Old 7th January 2018
  #1590
Lives for gear
 
Joe Porto's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy4Jazz View Post

The number of audio and video professionals that will purchase a high end computer is simply not that high and, many have already changed to PCs. The days when PCs could not compete because dedicated software for audio and video production was all Mac based are long gone. Nearly everything can run on either Mac or PC.
Yes, that was my point in an earlier post. We have choices now. Apple does not have a monopoly on the pro A/V market. Unless you are using Logic or Final Cut, you don't need a Mac.

Apple has evolved. They may have stated in a footnote that they are still committed to the pro market, but refreshing their high end models every 4+ years is hardly enough IMO.

At this point, you either accept Apple has moved on, and move to a PC, or you adapt existing Apple products to your needs.

But if you want to fault Apple because it's extremely successful business model is not catering to your personal needs, then you need to set the nostalgia and brand loyalty aside and just buy a PC that suits your needs.

Nintendo started as a playing card company. Xerox as a camera company. Nokia manufactured paper. Berkshire and Wrigley's were both originally textile companies.

Companies evolve. Apple is evolving. They may do so a little too fast for some customers, but their success speaks for itself.
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