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Open letter to apple for new mac pro
Old 17th May 2017
  #1
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foldback's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Open letter to apple for new mac pro

Dear Apple,

Lurking under the mixing console in my recording studio is a 2013 Mac Pro cylinder shaped computer, which I bought new in April of 2015. While it is a beautiful piece of industrial engineering it reminds me of another earlier and equally beautiful model from Apple, the ill fated CUBE!

Steve Jobs beamed and smiled ear-to-ear as he revealed the Cube. Like the master magician he was, he openly gushed "isn't it beautiful?". The gleaming plexiglass body was very unique at the time and unfortunately it was not very well received by the buying public. One thing the Cube had the current Mac Pro does not was an inboard CDROM drive, disc's emerged from a slot in the top like bread from a toaster.

Back then the Cube had no expandability without going outboard. There was no room in the Cube to add anything and it's the same on today's Mac Pro. Want to add a CDROM drive? At least the Cube had a ROM drive. On today's Mac Pro it must be some sort of external box because there's no room inside for a drive of any kind. Nothing about the current Apple DVD-ROM drive meshes with the current Mac Pro. It's a little square box on a too-short USB cord that has nowhere to go but dangle like an expensive earring from the back of the top-of-the-line professional Macintosh. The Mac Pro can not perch on top of the DVD-ROM drive, the drive enclosure is too small. If you want a proper disc-burner you're going to have to go third party because Apple says no drive for you.

If you want to add hard drives to a modern Mac Pro they must be external. If you want to add any peripheral it must be external. I have three external hard drives, two external SSD, an external DVD-ROM drive, a Thunderbolt dock (for more ports and a third monitor) and a 10-port USB-3 dock for more fast ports.

All the external power supplies and wiring is a mess. I've done everything I can to tame the wiring spaghetti, coiled cables neatly with wire ties, built a stand to hold the external devices (which should be internal). It still feels like a big step back for Apple and the Mac Pro. *We've taken to openly joking about it as the Mac semi-Pro because of the hassle of connecting external peripherals.

WHERE DOES APPLE THINK WE SHOULD PLUG ALL THIS STUFF IN?

The big aluminum Mac Pro boxes of yesteryear had well designed removable sleds for the disk drives and room for two CDROM drives. It was heavy and used a lot of electricity but I still have two of those Mac Pros and they are great computers. I much preferred that design to the current little cylinder shaped Mac Pro with all it's fiddly external wiring.

AMERICAN JOBS

I like knowing Apple tooled up to build the current Mac Pro design in the USA but if building it in China gave us a better form factor, lower cost and more usability then so be it. I don't need to tell you how the rest of the industry's product is built in China. From all the expansion I've seen in the USA it looks like Apple is employing lots of Americans at home. You build the iPhone in China, build the Mac Pro there if you can give us a less semi-pro model than the current offering.

WE ARE PRO'S, GIVE US A PRO FORM FACTOR

The next Mac Pro does not need to be huge but returning to a tower or box style form factor with room inside for common peripherals needed by professional users would sure be welcome.

These are pro users we're talking about, why not give us an option to make the thing rack-mountable without resorting to $600-$1000 custom metal work. I venture to say some pro users might rack them up as servers because we like Mac OS (when the software is working right, hint Logic bugs, hint hint).

I'm using my 2013 Mac Pro (purchased in 2015) in a professional recording studio (with Logic X). A rack-mount(able) Mac Pro design would be very welcome for the main control room and the keyboard room.

Please put the power switch somewhere easy to get to. Hiding the power switch on the rear among all the cabling is not a good design for pro users.

Return to offering some lower priced models. $1600, $2300, $3000, offering a combination of hardware at these three price points was a hallmark of the Mac Pro for years. I'd like another Mac Pro in our current keyboard room but I could not tolerate the festooning array of wires and external gadgets required by the current design. I don't need high horsepower either. What I need most is compatibility with the latest creative software and a less fragile system of integrating accessories.

From discussions I've seen in forums I'd say the form-factor of the current Mac Pro packaging has actually pushed more users to purchasing highly customized and preconfigured Windows PC systems from specialty retailers like Sweetwater.

IMAC DOES NOT WORK FOR PRO'S EITHER

Why not the iMac? Isn't it just a computer monitor with a built in computer?

Yes it is and it has the same peripheral limitations as the current Mac Pro, if you want to expand it at all you will end up with little boxes and wall wart power supplies hanging around the back, coming unplugged and failing!

AM I JUST NOT USING MY COMPUTER RIGHT?

Maybe I'm just being stupid and not using the computer like Apple thinks I should.

Lets review my Professional studio needs. I need removable SSD drives for my backups and client drives. I need a quality DVD-ROM drive for authoring media, music clients still want CDs. I need super fast removable drives to edit audio and video. I need a lot of external USB 3 ports because the current Mac Pro design has only four. I need Thunderbolt ports without limitations (currently you need a matrix chart to see what is allowable with Thunderbolt on current Mac Pro cylinders). What should I do different?

Please don't wait too much longer, give us a real professional Mac Pro, not over-priced industrial art.

Thank you

Respectfully yours
Mark King
used by permission: High on Technology: OPEN LETTER TO APPLE ABOUT THE MAC PRO
Old 18th May 2017
  #2
Lives for gear
Hackintosh, mang. Problem solved.
Old 18th May 2017
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
Dear Apple,

Lurking under the mixing console in my recording studio is a 2013 Mac Pro cylinder shaped computer, which I bought new in April of 2015. While it is a beautiful piece of industrial engineering it reminds me of another earlier and equally beautiful model from Apple, the ill fated CUBE!

Steve Jobs beamed and smiled ear-to-ear as he revealed the Cube. Like the master magician he was, he openly gushed "isn't it beautiful?". The gleaming plexiglass body was very unique at the time and unfortunately it was not very well received by the buying public. One thing the Cube had the current Mac Pro does not was an inboard CDROM drive, disc's emerged from a slot in the top like bread from a toaster.

Back then the Cube had no expandability without going outboard. There was no room in the Cube to add anything and it's the same on today's Mac Pro. Want to add a CDROM drive? At least the Cube had a ROM drive. On today's Mac Pro it must be some sort of external box because there's no room inside for a drive of any kind. Nothing about the current Apple DVD-ROM drive meshes with the current Mac Pro. It's a little square box on a too-short USB cord that has nowhere to go but dangle like an expensive earring from the back of the top-of-the-line professional Macintosh. The Mac Pro can not perch on top of the DVD-ROM drive, the drive enclosure is too small. If you want a proper disc-burner you're going to have to go third party because Apple says no drive for you.

If you want to add hard drives to a modern Mac Pro they must be external. If you want to add any peripheral it must be external. I have three external hard drives, two external SSD, an external DVD-ROM drive, a Thunderbolt dock (for more ports and a third monitor) and a 10-port USB-3 dock for more fast ports.

All the external power supplies and wiring is a mess. I've done everything I can to tame the wiring spaghetti, coiled cables neatly with wire ties, built a stand to hold the external devices (which should be internal). It still feels like a big step back for Apple and the Mac Pro. *We've taken to openly joking about it as the Mac semi-Pro because of the hassle of connecting external peripherals.

WHERE DOES APPLE THINK WE SHOULD PLUG ALL THIS STUFF IN?

The big aluminum Mac Pro boxes of yesteryear had well designed removable sleds for the disk drives and room for two CDROM drives. It was heavy and used a lot of electricity but I still have two of those Mac Pros and they are great computers. I much preferred that design to the current little cylinder shaped Mac Pro with all it's fiddly external wiring.

AMERICAN JOBS

I like knowing Apple tooled up to build the current Mac Pro design in the USA but if building it in China gave us a better form factor, lower cost and more usability then so be it. I don't need to tell you how the rest of the industry's product is built in China. From all the expansion I've seen in the USA it looks like Apple is employing lots of Americans at home. You build the iPhone in China, build the Mac Pro there if you can give us a less semi-pro model than the current offering.

WE ARE PRO'S, GIVE US A PRO FORM FACTOR

The next Mac Pro does not need to be huge but returning to a tower or box style form factor with room inside for common peripherals needed by professional users would sure be welcome.

These are pro users we're talking about, why not give us an option to make the thing rack-mountable without resorting to $600-$1000 custom metal work. I venture to say some pro users might rack them up as servers because we like Mac OS (when the software is working right, hint Logic bugs, hint hint).

I'm using my 2013 Mac Pro (purchased in 2015) in a professional recording studio (with Logic X). A rack-mount(able) Mac Pro design would be very welcome for the main control room and the keyboard room.

Please put the power switch somewhere easy to get to. Hiding the power switch on the rear among all the cabling is not a good design for pro users.

Return to offering some lower priced models. $1600, $2300, $3000, offering a combination of hardware at these three price points was a hallmark of the Mac Pro for years. I'd like another Mac Pro in our current keyboard room but I could not tolerate the festooning array of wires and external gadgets required by the current design. I don't need high horsepower either. What I need most is compatibility with the latest creative software and a less fragile system of integrating accessories.

From discussions I've seen in forums I'd say the form-factor of the current Mac Pro packaging has actually pushed more users to purchasing highly customized and preconfigured Windows PC systems from specialty retailers like Sweetwater.

IMAC DOES NOT WORK FOR PRO'S EITHER

Why not the iMac? Isn't it just a computer monitor with a built in computer?

Yes it is and it has the same peripheral limitations as the current Mac Pro, if you want to expand it at all you will end up with little boxes and wall wart power supplies hanging around the back, coming unplugged and failing!

AM I JUST NOT USING MY COMPUTER RIGHT?

Maybe I'm just being stupid and not using the computer like Apple thinks I should.

Lets review my Professional studio needs. I need removable SSD drives for my backups and client drives. I need a quality DVD-ROM drive for authoring media, music clients still want CDs. I need super fast removable drives to edit audio and video. I need a lot of external USB 3 ports because the current Mac Pro design has only four. I need Thunderbolt ports without limitations (currently you need a matrix chart to see what is allowable with Thunderbolt on current Mac Pro cylinders). What should I do different?

Please don't wait too much longer, give us a real professional Mac Pro, not over-priced industrial art.

Thank you

Respectfully yours
Mark King
used by permission: High on Technology: OPEN LETTER TO APPLE ABOUT THE MAC PRO
Agreed 100000%

Unfortunately, Apple as a business has moved in a different direction in the last ten years.

Ive seen everything (for the most part) go downhill. Apple is about to release a brand new MacBook Pro with an i7 processor that will be outdated in less than a year once the i9 drops.

Apple has continued to move in the direction of non user-serviceable products. Even the RAM is soldered on for some of the computers now, and forget about external drives.

As beautiful as the design is, there is little thought out into practicality or interoperability. These are things pros need.

Also, who cares if the computer looks like art in some mock-up photo of a minimalist studio? The reality is that it will be surrounded by peripherals that are outside of the unit taking up space as a poorly designed eyesore.

I'd really like to see Apple get its head out of its ass.

Here are a few suggestions:

1. Room for internal flash storage that is hot swappable.

2. PCIE card slots and a card reader.

3. A form-factor that is practical. At the very least, give me something that doesn't look like Cthulhu after I've plugged everything in.

4. Basic user serviceability.

5. Up to date specs. The folks playing candy crush during common hour have different needs than us. They might not care that the processor is behind everything else. WE DO.

6. Plays well with our current set ups. We don't want to join the Apple "ecosystem". We want a computer that plays well with our setups.

7. A Mac Pro user is not an Imac user. We expect and do different things with our
Old 18th May 2017
  #4
Lives for gear
 

Apple has already said that a new modular mac pro is in the works... likely being released next year... 2018 Mac Pro | AppleInsider

A return to the old pricing tiers would certainly be welcome.
---
c
Old 18th May 2017
  #5
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projektk's Avatar
 

The i9 is nothing new, it's just a new way they are classifying the enthusiast i7s. You will not see an i9 MacBook Pro.
Old 19th May 2017
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by projektk View Post
The i9 is nothing new, it's just a new way they are classifying the enthusiast i7s. You will not see an i9 MacBook Pro.
It's going to have up to 12 cores, likely without the need for expensive ECC RAM which would actually make it something new in the ProSumer price bracket.
Old 19th May 2017
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
AMERICAN JOBS

I like knowing Apple tooled up to build the current Mac Pro design in the USA but if building it in China gave us a better form factor, lower cost and more usability then so be it. I don't need to tell you how the rest of the industry's product is built in China. From all the expansion I've seen in the USA it looks like Apple is employing lots of Americans at home. You build the iPhone in China, build the Mac Pro there if you can give us a less semi-pro model than the current offering.
AFAIK only the assembly is in the US. Makes it still more expensive, but IMO quality should be better and it is fair to have jobs in the country of origin of the company who brands it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Medienhexer View Post
It's going to have up to 12 cores, likely without the need for expensive ECC RAM which would actually make it something new in the ProSumer price bracket.
ECC RAM is not that much of a huge price difference, especially not for an OEM like Apple. Also, new Intel SKU's will go way beyond 12 cores (current top liner v4 has 22 cores), so I doubt it ends at 12. It depends on what core speed they intend to offer and what public they want to approach. I assume like the current 12 core, more cores with less speed will be the top tier.
Old 19th May 2017
  #8
Old 19th May 2017
  #9
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gussyg2007's Avatar
digital tech is the worst investment you can make ... I have a wall of beautiful guitars/bass's when I retire they will be worth considerably more than when I bought them... A computer? 5 years on is a fricking door stopper
I refuse to cough up mucho deniro for something that depreciates at the rate of knots
the 2012 mac mini quad was a good "bang for buck" buy but they soon put a stop to that
So I've put a powerful hack together... sure it ain't no "mac experience" but it suits my needs and will get my work... cheaps as chips and in a few years time I'll dump it for another... I'll keep my screen keyboard,mouse hd's etc etc it'll of paid for itself several times over, so no loss
Old 19th May 2017
  #10
Lives for gear
 

It would be a real miss on Apple's part if they don't at least consider AMD's Threadripper, Epyc or Ryzen chips.. They are probably looking really hard at AMD's APU when those get released as well. Right now in the HEDT market even the upcoming Intel offering doesn't have 16 cores, 32 threads and on the consumer end , they don't have anything in the 6-8 core range. The only real barrier I think is that Apple has gone all in with Thunderbolt 3 and AMD at the moment doesn't support that.
Old 20th May 2017
  #11
Lives for gear
I wish Apple would just make motherboards and be done with it.
Old 20th May 2017
  #12
Lives for gear
They won't listen unfortunately.
Old 20th May 2017
  #13
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philter View Post
I wish Apple would just make motherboards and be done with it.
Actually I wished they just made the OS like Microsoft and leave the hardware to everyone else which they do anyway before stamping their name on it. FYI Apple doesn't make motherboards or much else. They design things and come up with a rough draft and a list of needs and the company they hire comes up with a few test models until Apple is happy. I remember when budget PC board maker ECS used to make Apples G3 laptops. Since ECS merged with Asus to form Asrock I'd be willing to bet Asus makes Apples logic boards these days.
Old 20th May 2017
  #14
Lives for gear
Well what I'm getting at is I wish they would just embrace the hackintosh movement and make it easier. Yes they could do that just by tweaking their operating system! But then they couldn't earn billions of dollars by grossly marking up over hyped hardware, so I'm just dreaming. I suppose the current state, where hacks are possible and Apple doesn't bother crushing the movement somehow, is good enough anyway.
Old 20th May 2017
  #15
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alndln View Post
They won't listen unfortunately.
I get that such "open letters to" are exercises in clearing one's head and not an actual attempt to get the attention of the subject, but I can't think of a technology company of the last 30 years who chart the course of their products with more of an eye on the company's vision or claimed purpose and less on what the end user claims publicly they want. And especially what they need as professionals, as Apple has already said that's not on their radar. This is, after all, a company who doesn't even touch down in the support forums in their own site, leaving answering questions, there and on other public forums, to end users communicating with each other. They truly have gone, in the past decade, to a company who was not spending enough time figuring out how to best satisfy the needs of the computer using public to one who truly doesn't pay attention to such things, as long as they hit the consumer niche in the numbers. Works for them, can't fault the strategy. We as pro end users are a terrible group to worry about if a company like Apple wants to succeed.

And I'm a lifelong Mac user and Windows hater, still using Macs.
Old 21st May 2017
  #16
Gear Addict
 
Sam an huel's Avatar
Quote:
where does apple think we should plug all this stuff in?
"It's a revolution, we we'll call it a pc." Tim Cook 2018
Old 25th May 2017
  #17
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigKD View Post
Hackintosh, mang. Problem solved.
Gave a Hackintosh a try. Had a pro builder with hackintosh experience set me up with a sweet 8 core i7 system with thunderbolt 3 and firewire. Hooked it up to my UAD rig. Nothing. Tried every combination. Nothing. Updated it to 10.12.5. Kernel crash on boot. I'll stick to my garbage can.
Old 25th May 2017
  #18
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Crazy4Jazz's Avatar
 

I agree with the OP. I am holding out hope for the modular Mac Pro. May it be all we need!
Old 25th May 2017
  #19
Brb
Gear Addict
 
Brb's Avatar
 

... thunderbolt.

I said this in another thread. If we are "gearslutz" why would we care about another peripheral hanging off the side of a computer? Most of us have home studios with wires everywhere, multiple pieces of equpement. I don't see the big deal
Old 25th May 2017
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brb View Post
... thunderbolt.

I said this in another thread. If we are "gearslutz" why would we care about another peripheral hanging off the side of a computer? Most of us have home studios with wires everywhere, multiple pieces of equpement. I don't see the big deal
"Gearslut" is a cute term and all, but man I don't want all that mess if I can help it. My bottom line is to just make some music, and be kind of neat and orderly about my set up.

I might be a Foodslut but that does not mean I want my kitchen in a shamble with cooking utensils and loose tools everywhere collecting food particles and grease.
Old 29th May 2017
  #21
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foldback's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
In my studio I want reliability. The cheesy little connectors used for all these external peripherals are really irritating me.

I've supported the wires, carefully coiled up and wire tied things and still I get errors from having to resort to so much external USB stuff like hard disks.

The connectors used for Thunderbolt on my Mac are some of the worst ever designed IMHO. They are so easy to unplug, they must be well supported or else my spiffy external Thunderbolt dock can come unplugged in the middle of a session and I lose my hard disks that are running on it.

I firmly believe hard disks and/or SSD belong in the computer chassis not as a bunch of boxes clustered around this little cylinder and connected with all these flimsy little cables.

I am a Gearslut and have three huge racks of gear. It's in 19" racks so it's all mounted neatly and can be cabled neatly. The current Mac Pro requires $600-$1200 of external custom metal work to neatly rack mount, that is ridiculous.

I'm having problems with my external USB3 dock disconnecting during recording sessions. Everything appears ok and tight, it's just too many cheap USB connectors in the signal path.

If the current Mac Pro had a real mounting scheme and a solid path for peripheral gadgets it would not be an issue and I would not be writing this.

Today my Mac Pro has five hard drives, two SSD, a Thunderbolt dock, a USB3 dock along with keyboard and mouse connections. I run three monitors, one is from the Dock.

If you've ever actually worked with Thunderbolt on a Mac Pro you would know that there are strict limitations about what you can plug in where.

I'm not ready to rebuild a 2012 big aluminum model yet but I'm thinking about it.

Sorry Hacintosh is not an option for me, I use current software and need compatibility.

Thanks for all the positive comments. I'm sending this via snail mail to Tim Cook. I've been an Apple stock holder for many years and have gotten phone calls back when I complained in a pleasant manner :-)

Good music to all!
Old 29th May 2017
  #22
I needed to upgrade my computer and just couldn't afford a mac anymore. I was going to build a hackintosh but I didn't want to take the risk of things not working properly. I decided to build a windows 10 machine. I built a 10-core machine with thunderbolt for about $3300. I was really hesitant because I only know OS X but navigating in windows 10 pro has been a breeze. I also felt that it was nice that I could swap out parts without filling my local land fill with old macs. I can upgrade with very little cost. It's been a rock solid experience. I hope apple does the pro community right. The newest laptop has been a dongle/adapter disaster.
Old 29th May 2017
  #23
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brucerothwell's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brb View Post
... thunderbolt.

I said this in another thread. If we are "gearslutz" why would we care about another peripheral hanging off the side of a computer? Most of us have home studios with wires everywhere, multiple pieces of equpement. I don't see the big deal
I suppose my question is this (not specifically asking @Brb):

Are external devices on Thunderbolt or USB-C as fast or faster than internal devices on PCI-e?
Old 29th May 2017
  #24
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brucerothwell's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by exel View Post
Gave a Hackintosh a try.
This has me wondering.

I have previously thought that building a hackintosh was a sketchy thing to do, considering Apple's EULA.

But having 2 Mac laptops that are broken, and another (an early Mac Pro 8-core) that is barely able to run Sierra (had to do the 4,1 to 5,1 firmware upgrade), I am starting to think that maybe I do have a right to install OSX on non-Apple hardware.

But before I go down that road, I have concerns:
  1. Is it possible to use a Mac Pro case to build a Hackintosh?
  2. If a Mac Pro case can be used, how much work to make that happen?
  3. Is it possible to get a 2012 motherboard/cpu to replace the 2009 motherboard/cpu? (Trying to maintain using existing drives/cards/etc)

Any advice from you guyz is appreciated.
Old 29th May 2017
  #25
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Swurveman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by brucerothwell View Post
I suppose my question is this (not specifically asking @Brb):

Are external devices on Thunderbolt or USB-C as fast or faster than internal devices on PCI-e?
According to RME, Thunderbolt is not faster than PCIE. Read post 8 by the moderator.
Old 29th May 2017
  #26
Gear Guru
 
kafka's Avatar
Your post is really long, so I'm not going to read it. But, this year's MacBook Pro's aren't nearly good enough for me to upgrade my mid-2012 MBPR. So, it'll get a new battery, and probably at least another year or two of use before I move on.
Old 30th May 2017
  #27
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by brucerothwell View Post
...[*]Is it possible to use a Mac Pro case to build a Hackintosh?
you can certainly mechanically mod the original case to mount standard ATX board with CPU, there is room for that, and cut out addtional holes at backside for PC power supply, which has different form factor..

But why would anyone to do that? You can buy reasonable and quiet PC case, with bottom mounted PS for $150-200 (say Fractal Define R5), where all components perfectly fits (incl. your drives, cards etc.) and there is plenty room for expansion.

Quote:
[*]If a Mac Pro case can be used, how much work to make that happen?
re my previous reply

Quote:
[*]Is it possible to get a 2012 motherboard/cpu to replace the 2009 motherboard/cpu? (Trying to maintain using existing drives/cards/etc)
There are certain mechanical differences between older and new boards, IIRC at least risers are different, plus single and two socket models had also other component differences.. So it depends, maybe it's possible. I don't recall all of that from my head, there is lot more information at ifixit.com or insanelymac.com forums and you can probably find leaked service manuals somewhere.

If you really want to do such MacPro upgrade (I wouldn't go there personally), I'd rather get whole refub 2012 machine.

Michal
Old 6th June 2017
  #28
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foldback's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Yesterday I watched the keynote from Apple at the developers show. Very disappointed.

A new iMac Pro for $4999? YUCK

I guess "Virtual Reality" is the next big thing for kids but it's not for me. I don't need these ridiculous high performance graphics cards for my time line to scroll.

I'm seriously thinking about building a Windows 10 machine. I've been MS free since 2003 but Apple has totally ignored our pleas, I need inboard drives and accessories not the festooning array of USB ****e hanging off the ports (and occasionally coming unplugged rrrrr).

Apple, color me "very disappointed".
Old 6th June 2017
  #29
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
Yesterday I watched the keynote from Apple at the developers show. Very disappointed.

A new iMac Pro for $4999? YUCK

I guess "Virtual Reality" is the next big thing for kids but it's not for me. I don't need these ridiculous high performance graphics cards for my time line to scroll.

I'm seriously thinking about building a Windows 10 machine. I've been MS free since 2003 but Apple has totally ignored our pleas, I need inboard drives and accessories not the festooning array of USB ****e hanging off the ports (and occasionally coming unplugged rrrrr).

Apple, color me "very disappointed".
The 18 core with 128GB ram sounded pretty impressive.
Old 6th June 2017
  #30
Gear Maniac
 
bigcohoona's Avatar
 

Great post, agree 100%!

I have heard rumors and comments here and there that Apple know well the difficulty with connectivity and expansion that the "Trashcan" was (and is) and are redeveloping the Mac Pro lineup... I think the new iMac Pro from yesterday's WWDC may have been a quick place holder even if only for the perception that they are trying to come up with other solutions for their Professional user base... but $5K!

I remember opening my 2008 Mac Pro for the first time and feeling that I finally had a computer product that was worth the $2500 price tag. This was after having custom made Rack Mount PC's etc. I had conducted a time study on my workflow and realized I was spending 10% to 30% of my time tweaking the PC to work with all my gear. I've hardly turned my Mac Pro off since then! It has been a phenomenal workhorse and I am just now seeing performance issues (with Omnisphere etc.) that probably denote the need for a refresh... plus El Capitan and High Sierra aren't supporting my motherboard now. (If anyone else has no CPU spiking with Omnisphere etc. I'm all ears on your setup!).

I've been waiting as well for Apple to come up with a different solution than the Obsidian Mac Pro. I'm willing to upgrade from Firewire adda's to a T-bolt or USB model but I was truly hoping yesterday that Apple was going to announce something more along the lines of the OP's thoughts. Apple has removed almost any level of user expansion ability and eventually I think it will catch up, most of us don't have the ability to spend $2500 (much less $5k!) every couple years. With solutions such as Studio One and the purposed artistic professional focus of the Windows software and hardware dev teams, Apple may find themselves behind the 8-ball. As a Logic User I hope this doesn't happen, but much in Logic feels more focused on acquiring aspiring Pro's (like me ) than keeping the real heavy hitters around.

I was pretty shocked with the Macbook Pro's launch last year with only 4 Thunderbolt ports... my first thought was "nope, not even close to what I need"... maybe if they came out with an ingenious dock that had all the ports I needed, extra SSD slots (and a cooling system!) I might move to it, but not as is.

Agree with the OP, these new models do not feel "Pro" in any other way than speed and nomenclature. I actually don't want the Macbook Pro's to be thinner, I prefer them to have a little heft so they don't move when used on my gigging laptop stand.

Would love to see (but am not holding my breath):
- Mac Mini Pro (Double the height, Ram & Hard Drive Bays, More Cores, and User upgradable, Daisy Chain Rack Mount)
- Mac Pro (Just bring back my 2008-12 Box with upgraded Motherboard and components! ... Space Gray! :D )
- Macbook Pro...Pro (Make it thicker if need be but give me some USB3s, DVD Burner, and Removable SSD)
- If Apple wanted to be really cool, make a 2-4TB Pro level SSD hot swap system to transfer between Tower & Laptop
- As mentioned above, would love an Apple developed docking system for Macbook Pros.

Just my 2 pence :D.

Since I am in the market, What's working for you? Not in the market for a $3-5K Mac but am willing to move to an iMac, Macbook Pro or MacMini based system if it can handle a 100 track project, with Heavy AU/VST instrument usage. (not hijacking the thread though.. PM me :D )... I think things have changed too much to invest in a 2012 Mac Pro.

~C
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