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Mac pro prices seems a little crazy
Old 22nd August 2007
  #1
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Mac pro prices seems a little crazy

I was just looking at the mac pro page and it looks like the base system is $2500 with a gig or ram and a 250 hd.

That seems really steep for a base model.

I tend to replace my mac every 3 years, but I this system would end up being $5k by the time i added ram, hard drives, apple care and updated software.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #2
F5D
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Don't buy ram or harddrives from apple. They cost about 30% elsewhere. The 2.66GHz model is the default model which they offer. you can modify the package and change the processors to 2.0GHz for example but imo the 2.66GHz model offers the best value for money right now. I'm still waiting for the Penryn models to come later this year or early next year.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quincyg View Post
I was just looking at the mac pro page and it looks like the base system is $2500 with a gig or ram and a 250 hd.

That seems really steep for a base model.

I tend to replace my mac every 3 years, but I this system would end up being $5k by the time i added ram, hard drives, apple care and updated software.
It's all relative. I paid about $2500 for a machine with 128KB of RAM and a 10MB hard drive (yes, KB and MB.) That was a number of years ago, and not inflation-adjusted (I paid about $4K for a new car around the same time.) All of this makes me a certified Old Guy.

The cost of acquisition may be steep, but you get a lot more CPU cycles (and I/O bandwidth) per dollar with a MacPro right now than just about anything else.

But it will all be cheaper and bigger and faster in the future. Only you can decide what you really need and when you really need it.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #4
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considering that a macpro can eliminate the need for external DSP processing and storage, I say its a bargain. The native power that comes from this computer is just blowing me away. I have never felt better about buying a computer before.
Old 22nd August 2007
  #5
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I'm getting one next year and paying even $5000 seems reasonable to me. I'll have a machine that I will not upgrade for at least 6 years. Most of my outboard processors will be obsolete at that point.

I might cut a corner and go with a Dell monitor, though....I can get a 24" for just a few hundred.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #6
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i guess the bottom line is that it is an investment. i think a similar pc would be about half the price though. guess i better get a good gig so i can justify it soon.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #7
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Just to echo what has already been said.. don't buy the extra hard drives and ram from Apple. Crucial is a good place to look for ram, and just aboy any SATA 3.0 drive will work fine.

One thing you have to remember is that the Mac Pro is the same price as it was when it was introduced last year, which actually made it a bargain then, and still a decent buy now.

If you're comparing with a pc build (which I do alot), you need to compare it with a dual Xeon build, which (even with the recent Intel price cuts) you'll find is about the same price once you figure in a Windows license, very beefy power supply, high end case, etc. ($50 video card though ) Sure, you can compare it with a Q6600 or Q6700 Core 2 Quad build, but its not apples to apples because those systems will max out at 8 gigs ram.. and with Leopard coming soon max ram capacity will start to make a difference.

Also, if you keep your eye on the Apple refurb site you can get a Mac Pro for $2200. I have a friend that just got a refurb Macbook Pro and its squeaky clean, you'd never know that it wasn't brand new.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #8
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Yeah the refurbs can be a great deal. Sometimes they have problems, but the warranty is the same as a new one.

I bought a new 4x2.66 three months ago and by the time I brought the RAM up to 5GB and added two more 500gb drives the total ended up being about $3100.

And yes, it's a FANTASTIC machine. Very powerful. thumbsup
Old 23rd August 2007
  #9
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The MacPro is overpriced and I think it really sucks that you have to buy such an expensive computer just to be able to stick a few cards in it and run OSX. Still, I would probably justify the purchase of one if I made a lot f money with it, but it wouldn't change the fact that it's overpriced.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #10
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macgee's Avatar
i don't think it's overpriced at all. i think their previous machines were way overpriced. 5 years ago i bought a 933mhz G4 for 3200euro! now that was expensive - i was envious at the PC guys.

things have changed and you can run windows & os x side by side and even in a window. it's also extremely powerful, stable and relatively quiet.

another thing is the design, it's so incredibly easy to add or remove a hard drive, just slot it in. the ram modules are also incredibly easy to access. add on the FW800, bluetooth, wireless and other connectivity along with digital audio in/out and you have one amazingly flexible and sexy machine that should last at least a good 4 or 5 years

i love this machine and would buy it again if i had to
Old 23rd August 2007
  #11
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I just moved up from a G4/1.25 last week to a Mac Pro Quad 2.66... and wow, I can't tell you how happy I am. Amazing performance boost with this machine. Great build quality too. With 5GB of RAM and a nice Seagate Barracuda drive for audio, it's working incredibly well. I pulled up a few PT sessions that were previously taking up over 80% of the CPU on the G4. With the Mac Pro, they was barely registering 10% of CPU usage, if that.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quincyg View Post
i guess the bottom line is that it is an investment. i think a similar pc would be about half the price though.
Dunno about the situation now, but when the MacPro first came out, similar PCs were considerably more expensive.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkatz42 View Post
Dunno about the situation now, but when the MacPro first came out, similar PCs were considerably more expensive.

I did a part by part equivelant breakdown of a macpro vs. pc and I think the pc was maybe a hundred bucks or so cheaper. It really wasn't much of a difference at all. That was a few months ago though.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quincyg View Post
i guess the bottom line is that it is an investment.
no. it is a tool. we want investments to go up in value. computers, cars, most microphones & digital gear... these are things that go DOWN in value.

you look at a computer and say, "i'm probably going to replace this in 3 years, and i can probably sell it for 25% of what i'll pay now."

hence, this tool needs to make you $1875 more money than your current setup--either in productivity, or increased client satisfaction (sonically, or whatever)--just to break even.

and, as others have stated, buying RAM, HD upgrades, AppleCare... these are all ways to pay too much. skip applecare (and all extended warranties), and buy your RAM & HDs elsewhere.

--jon
Old 24th August 2007
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonCraig View Post
no. it is a tool. we want investments to go up in value. computers, cars, most microphones & digital gear... these are things that go DOWN in value.

you look at a computer and say, "i'm probably going to replace this in 3 years, and i can probably sell it for 25% of what i'll pay now."

hence, this tool needs to make you $1875 more money than your current setup--either in productivity, or increased client satisfaction (sonically, or whatever)--just to break even.

and, as others have stated, buying RAM, HD upgrades, AppleCare... these are all ways to pay too much. skip applecare (and all extended warranties), and buy your RAM & HDs elsewhere.

--jon
I thought he ment the money ... not the computer ... being the investment

money spent to return more money
Old 24th August 2007
  #16
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let's just say that it is a tool that you invest in, in order to make more money.thumbsup
Old 24th August 2007
  #17
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actually the one thing that make pc's a little better "investment" is that they are upgradeable and cheap to repair. try finding a $50 power supply for a mac. every few years i upgrade my pc's. I usually replace the cpu or motherboard for a few hundred bucks.
Old 24th August 2007
  #18
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sleepwalker's Avatar
 

Totally disagree

I can run Windows and OSX on the same box. I use both. I can actually use Adobe Audition as my editor while using Live on OSX. For me, and for many others; the intel macs are worth the price.

Also, spec out a comparable PC with an equally nice case and power supply. You'll be about 10% less than the Mac Pro.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stiff View Post
The MacPro is overpriced and I think it really sucks that you have to buy such an expensive computer just to be able to stick a few cards in it and run OSX. Still, I would probably justify the purchase of one if I made a lot f money with it, but it wouldn't change the fact that it's overpriced.
Old 24th August 2007
  #19
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JonCraig's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by quincyg View Post
try finding a $50 power supply for a mac.
try finding a mac that needs a new power supply heh heh heh
Old 24th August 2007
  #20
Deleted 86c3d96
Guest
Costs

Over the life of a year, the Mac Pro costs less and less to produce because the component prices have decreased; yet, we don't see the benefits of this such as quarterly upgrade in components, or overall price reductions. Since the move to the Intel platform, volume costs are now shared with other manufacturers, unlike Apple's previous "go it alone attitude." Why no extra RAM, no better video card, no larger hard drive. The components have decreased substantially in the past year. With each passing month, Apple receives a higher margin on these machines, and increased profitability at our expense.
Old 24th August 2007
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mersisblue View Post
I thought he ment the money ... not the computer ... being the investment

money spent to return more money
money is money... spending money on a computer is not an investment... it's buying a tool you need to do a job.

money invested is put into mutual funds or the like. a carpenter doesn't invest in a hammer... he buys one. and he buys the right one for the particular type of carpentry he does. when he gets his paycheck, he must retain a portion of that money to replace the hammer when it wears out. (it's also a good idea that he invest some... so he'll have money when he's too old to swing a hammer).

off topic, but i know a LOT of engineers who feel their retirement lies in selling off gear when they stop making records. and if someone happened to buy a few dozen fairchild 660s 30 years ago, that line of thought might almost be true.

but the simple fact is that gear holding value is pretty rare. you're lucky if you "break even", but that doesn't take inflation into account, nor does it begin to consider what the same money invested 30 years ago would be now (after compound interest).

we, as engineers, have to have certain tools. others, we buy because they make our lives easier. others we buy because they make our end product sound better. still others we buy because they increase our productivity/efficiency. and finally, we just plain *want* some toys. but none of those are investments. at best, they help us make more money which we can invest. at worst, they're sold off for pennies on the dollar to lucky sob's after we're dead.

--jon
Old 24th August 2007
  #22
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strauss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkatz42 View Post
Dunno about the situation now, but when the MacPro first came out, similar PCs were considerably more expensive.
Actually, the Mac Pro is cheaper then a similar PC!
The Mac Pro is based around the 5000x chipset and Xeon CPU's.
Old 24th August 2007
  #23
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esteso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonCraig View Post
and, as others have stated, buying RAM, HD upgrades, AppleCare... these are all ways to pay too much. skip applecare (and all extended warranties), and buy your RAM & HDs elsewhere.--jon
Do not skip Applecare on a laptop!
Old 24th August 2007
  #24
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drockfresh's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by strauss View Post
Actually, the Mac Pro is cheaper then a similar PC!
The Mac Pro is based around the 5000x chipset and Xeon CPU's.
Yes, but isn't that for the base model and doesn't the RAM and applecare make it much more expensive than a comparable PC?
Old 24th August 2007
  #25
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Um ,

Anyone runnng their own business will use the $2500 as a tax write off anyway!

After the 3 years its cost you nothing so why whinge over the price?

Also if it hasnt paid for itself in the first year of ownership time to get a job at a bank cause heck music aint your thing if you cant turn around a small amount of cash like that in a year

Also any business baulking at spending $2500 in the world of the studios aint gonna last very long!

Overpriced ? When you consider the computer for better or worse IS the focal point of a lot of music recording/making in most studios these days id say its a bargain.

Ive spent more money on a single microphone and I know what gets more daily use...

THE COMPUTER.

*shrug*
Old 24th August 2007
  #26
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quincy.
i normally dont reply in mac threads cos whatever i say prolly people think i'm a totally biased pc guy. actually i'm not.
if it was the blinkety blonk computer company from dinkety doo land and they offered huge value for money for the technology on sale i would be a big supporter.
in summary i look for value for money.

i really wanted to mebe try a mac this time around n support apple
cos i felt finally apple was doing some things right.
but frankly the pricing really really annoyed me.

i dont want mac zealots flaming me..cos if u met me at a pub for a drink you would realise i'm very fair.
but when i can buy a quad intel for 900 buks i would question my sanity paying
such steep prices. especially when tek is continuing to change so rapidly.
cos theres a whole raft of new tek coming.
sure.for the wealthy mebe 3k or 5k is a drop in the bucket.
or for big studios with a big revenue stream.
but for lots of small guys its not. the 2k saved will buy me some nice gear
for my studio.
Old 24th August 2007
  #27
Gear Maniac
So far for me the Mac Pro has helped me be the most productive yet. Ya I guess I could've saved some $$. Maybe a $1000. But when it comes down to it I'm able to listen to a mix on this thing as I type. I'm not as worried about problems being online as I was running the PC. I Built a C2D E6600 for Sonar 6 and really didn't enjoy that whole experience. As well I had to copy all the software updates for the Daw to a thumb drive and plug em in/out from the internet (G4) to the Daw PC. I didn't like Sonar myself (but that's just me). Using Logic was my main reason for going Mac. This thing has run great since May and I've gotten 12 songs scratched out, full mix with my rough melody lines in place (my wife writes the lyric). But as I play back roughly 30 stereo audio, audio instruments tracks and plugs all over them and the buss my CPU usage is about 20%. In my eyes this thing is and for once I can concentrate on music, not wondering where my computers limitations are. I compare the Mac Pro to a Built for Audio PC. So the price difference may not quite be the $1000. But whatever, as someone said, I leased my Mac Pro for a $100 a month for 3 years and every $$ will come back through income tax. No complaints and I will spend the $300 on applecare before next May so that my ass is covered as well. I grabbed 2X2 gigs or ram for $400 (the price I sold my G4 for). I had 2 Sata 2 drives and grabbed 2 more Sata 2's ( OS, Audio, Samples and Back-up) all in one box. She's quiet out of the box. Guess I'll shutup now.
Later
Brian
Old 24th August 2007
  #28
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amost's Avatar
 

I can't build PCs and when I was looking to get one over a year ago I had some guys around here & other parts spec me out a machine & they couldn't beat the Mac Pro 2.66 price so I went with it. It's a great machine...hate buying computers but I haven't really bitched about the Mac Pro at all.
Old 24th August 2007
  #29
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strauss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
Yes, but isn't that for the base model and doesn't the RAM and applecare make it much more expensive?
Don't buy RAM from Apple!

I was trying to build a PC with similar spec as the Mac Pro.
I based my build around Dual Xeon 5150's, 5000X chipset, etc. etc.
In the end is was more expensive compared to the Mac Pro!
Or try to spec a similar Dell system, that's way more expensive!

So instead of doing that I build a system around a Q6600 CPU and a P35 chipset, which is about €1000 less then a Mac Pro.
The main reason I assembled my own computer was because I wanted 4 PCIe and 2 PCI slots, which isn't possible on the Mac side.
But I'm computer savy and building your own PC is a minefield. You have to build it based on your specific needs and there aren't that many people who REALLY now everything about building PC's for audio.

If people just want a computer and get it done, most of the time I recommend a Mac Pro. Especially now that you can run XP on it too (lack of ASIO 'direct monitoring' on OSX is a real bitch!)
Old 24th August 2007
  #30
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JonCraig's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by esteso View Post
Do not skip Applecare on a laptop!
all extended warranties, be they from apple or best buy or whomever, are designed to make you and your money part.

quick google search found someone who is slightly more literate than me:

from: http://www.statesman.com/money/conte.../qa050711.html

Extended warranties are a bad idea in most cases. You would be much better off putting the $630 into the bank and using it to buy another computer when this one breaks down

from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extended_warranty

Consumer advocate groups, such as the non-profit Consumers Union, advise against purchasing extended warranties. David Butler of the Consumers Union says, "The extended warranty is definitely in the best interest of the company, but isn't often in the best interest of the consumer." He adds, "The company is much more likely to profit from the extended warranty than the consumer is." In many cases, if the item does need repairing, the cost of repairs are less than the cost of the extended warranty. Other advocates also advise against purchasing extended warranties, maintaining that they are a cash cow for retailers, many of whom will refuse to repair items covered under such plans, if at all possible.

--jon
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