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Goodbye macpro towers...

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Greg Burke
Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:39:29 am

I'm at a apple store and noticed that there was no display on the floor for the Macpro tower. When I asked the apple worker, she informed me that the macpros are no longer on display at any of the apples store....wow. I cannot believe there actually killing off the entire group that made them who they are today.

Just my 2 cents...

I wear many hats.
http://www.gregburkepost.com


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Bret Williams
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:06:16 am

Yeah I had heard that, and happened to be in a store today and noticed that. I think it's quite a sign. That design was their pride and joy. Still the best tower ever designed. The fact that it's not on display speaks volumes. I mean, why not have them? 12 cores! Looks cool, sounds cool. And if you sell one you're making a lot of money.


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 2:04:38 pm

[Bret Williams] "Still the best tower ever designed."

While it was the best tower for 2004, I do have to say that HP's Z800 case design is far superior for accessibility and expansion. If you take the Mac vs. PC out of the argument and discuss from a functional design point of view, the HP tower is way better for content creators.

The fact that there has been no update to the basic tower design in 7 years is what should speak more than Apple not including towers in their store layout anymore.


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David Lazaro Saz
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 6:21:25 pm

And what do you think about a Dell Precision T7500?


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:58:16 pm

[David Lazaro Saz] "And what do you think about a Dell Precision T7500?"

I wish I could say. It's been really easy to deal with HP. Dell is a terrific partner too, but I've not been able to test their boxes.


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David Lazaro Saz
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 10:47:43 pm

[Dennis Radeke] "I wish I could say. It's been really easy to deal with HP. Dell is a terrific partner too, but I've not been able to test their boxes."

Interesting. My experience as a customer is exactly the opposite. It has always been easier for me buying from Dell. I have only bought mobile workstations from Dell so far and I was thinking about maybe trying luck with a desktop this time. Both the Z800 and the T7500 seem to be similar although the Z800 has much higher production values and design than the T7500.

I suppose that as soon as the Sandy Bridge Xeons arrive in Q1 2012, both HP and Dell will release new models. Dell was rumored to change their workstation design this time. Let's hope that Apple also releases something, anything, for the workstation market.


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:13:31 am

If true. Bye Apple!


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Brad Spinoza
and Hello Avid or Adobe
on Nov 19, 2011 at 12:35:44 pm

The EOL of the MacPro towers has been anticipated on this forum for quite some time. Like many folks, I've given up on trying to read Apple's tea leaves and waiting for press releases to announce press conferences months in the future.


Apple's decade in the pro market was a nice ride while it lasted. I personally enjoy using Final Cut X, particularly to edit my DSLR "fun stuff." I can see how it has the potential to become a staple for "backpack journalists," event videographers, or photographers. In the hands of a skilled storyteller, a MacBook or iMac plus FCP X could be used to do great things.

But as somebody who owns a business, I just cannot afford to let my inner Apple fanboy rule. Several of the customers who pay me actual money for my editing require my work product to play nicely in their Avid workflows.

So when it comes to upgrading my workhorse hardware and entering the 64 bit world at least for the next three years, it pays to stay platform agnostic. I'll miss my aging MacPro. But I won't miss playing the guessing game with Apple.


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Kevin Patrick
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 12:36:47 pm

[Greg Burke] "I cannot believe there actually killing off the entire group that made them who they are today."

Not that I want to disagree with your opinion, but I am wondering why you feel that the Mac Pro made Apple who they are today?

It appears that Apple, or more specifically Steve Jobs, preferred systems that were closed to the consumer. For me, that was apparent with the first Macintosh. I believe it used Torx screws (or something similar) to close it up. Even thought the inside of the case had the designer's signatures, most people couldn't open up their 128K Mac. As opposed to an IBM PC which you could open up, install boards and add memory. This was confirmed in Job's biography. Wozniak wanted the Apple II to be user expandable, Job's did not. After Jobs came back, he relaunched the Mac, in a similar way to the original Macintosh with the iMac.

Today, about the only thing users can upgrade (outside of a Mac Pro) is memory. You can replace drives, but in some cases you shouldn't.

Or am I too focused on the box and you're thinking what people did with it?

I'd like to think that they are no longer selling Mac Pro's in their stores, simply because of their low volume. I did notice a few months ago, they stopped selling graphic cards in store.

Still, I wonder if this is a sign that they are planning on killing it. It seems to me, if they are going to kill it, they'd just do it. I don't recall any other product they dropped where they had a phased out approach. Don't they usually just drop something all together?

So now what? You've got your Mac Pro user-fish, sitting in the blender. Apple hits the blend button ... Ahhhhh! Nothing happens. Just kidding. Look, it's not plugged in. (yet?)

More wishful think on my part I guess.

I have been poking around the tonymacx86 forum since some of this Mac Pros discussions started up again. I'm probably foolish enough to give it a try. Sometimes it's bad to have a "I bet I can make it work" attitude.


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Liam Hall
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 1:53:07 pm

Maybe they're just creating space for the arrival of the new models. One can hope...

Liam Hall
Director/DoP/Editor
http://www.liamhall.net


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David Eaks
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 1:54:38 pm

I think they are getting ready to announce the new division of Apple, Apple Pro, which will be solely dedicated to the pro/broadcast market and will operate with unparalleled transparency. Apple Pro will apologize for X, rename it iMovie 12 and announce the Beta for Final Cut Studio 4. Including FCP 8 and the rebirth of every great App they ever EOLed. The Suite will cost no less than a few grand.

That or the announcement of Apples new line of HD TVs that can run FCPX which is controlled with a Nintendo Wii remote knockoff...


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 1:59:13 pm

[David Eaks] "I think they are getting ready to announce the new division of Apple, Apple Pro, which will be solely dedicated to the pro/broadcast market and will operate with unparalleled transparency."

I know that's kind of sarcastic, but it would be kind of cool if they actually did something like that. I don't think it will happen though.


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TImothy Auld
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 2:15:44 pm

Kind of sarcastic? I think it could be used as the definition. Pretty good satire too.

bigpine


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David Eaks
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 2:58:56 pm

Yeah, I'm not holding my breath waiting for that to happen!

Really I think that Apple killing off all the pro stuff could be detrimental to their image. Doesn't the general consumer just love owning a product made by the same company that makes high end professional products? Once Apple is down to only consumer level products, won't they lose that prestige holding onto everyone from the old school die hard users to 12 year olds? Then people realize they don't want to be locked-in to the closed system that is Apple and they'll move on to more open and customizable products. I don't know, maybe those consumers don't even care, they just want their new iGadget every (Avg = 298 days) and Apple will just dominate the consumer market.

Guess I'm just pissed because I (re)built my company around Apple when we moved into HD. My first Apple product in '08, the Mac Pro, loved it and didn't look back. Excellent experience with Apple all around. I was comfortable and confident that the investment in Apple was in a company who would support my professional needs far into the future. Just yesterday we were talking about upgrading to the new Mac Pro with thunderbolt when it comes out...

Although, Mac Rumors Mac Buyers guide say's "Mac Pro- Do not buy, update soon". I know that doesn't hold any real value but without an official EOL from Apple, there is still a glimmer of hope.


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Steve Connor
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:14:23 pm

[David Eaks] "Guess I'm just pissed because I (re)built my company around Apple when we moved into HD. My first Apple product in '08, the Mac Pro, loved it and didn't look back. Excellent experience with Apple all around. I was comfortable and confident that the investment in Apple was in a company who would support my professional needs far into the future. Just yesterday we were talking about upgrading to the new Mac Pro with thunderbolt when it comes ou"

Why are you pissed? Apple haven't done anything with the MacPro yet, all of this is just wild speculation at the moment

"My Name is Steve and I'm an FCPX user"


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Steve Connor
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:18:44 pm

[Dennis Radeke] "I know that's kind of sarcastic, but it would be kind of cool if they actually did something like that. I don't think it will happen though."

Unless they buy Adobe?

Seriously Adobe are so far down the road on integrated publishing, web/mobile and broadcast integration that the only way Apple could possibly catch up is to buy them.

"My Name is Steve and I'm an FCPX user"


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:37:28 pm

[Steve Connor] "Unless they buy Adobe?"

Hey, they have the cash for it, but I don't think that the fit is there. Adobe wouldn't be as profitable to Apple if they were Mac platform only. Part of our zen if you will, is being open and cross platform. I don't think that would happen to fit with Apple's business model right now. And to point back to the original conversation, a Tower would be a compelling argument for Premiere Pro and After Effects, but if there isn't going to be another tower then (barring Craig's prophecy) it makes even less sense.


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Steve Connor
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:40:29 pm

[Dennis Radeke] "Hey, they have the cash for it, but I don't think that the fit is there. Adobe wouldn't be as profitable to Apple if they were Mac platform only. Part of our zen if you will, is being open and cross platform. I don't think that would happen to fit with Apple's business model right now. And to point back to the original conversation, a Tower would be a compelling argument for Premiere Pro and After Effects, but if there isn't going to be another tower then (barring Craig's prophecy) it makes even less sense."

I think they would have made a move for Adobe by now if that was their plan, I hope they don't in the future.

"My Name is Steve and I'm an FCPX user"


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 6:19:18 pm

[Steve Connor] "I hope they don't in the future."

For once we agree

I would have zero confidence their products would be around in 3 years


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Bret Williams
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 6:55:22 pm

They need Adobe and Adobe products, but there would be no profit gain in buying and running Adobe. There's no profit in Adobe running Adobe. The power comes from being ABLE to buy Adobe. Probably keeps Adobe building for Mac. I think Adobe builds for Mac because so many people prefer to work on the Mac and OSX. If they drop the high end machines with the high end processing, then they'll lose the high end creators. Lose users and you lose a chunk of your ecosystem all the way down to what phone, pad, laptop, etc. they buy. Lose some of that high end mystique, and you lose high end pricing and on down the line.

OT - On Adobe, I bought a little Adobe Stock and a bit more Apple Stock the day Jobs announced the iPhone in January. If all goes well I'll retire off that. If the Adobe stock doesn't bring me down. What's up Adobe? Here's a company doing everything as right as they can but yet the stock is 60% of the value it was in 2007. I learned a bit from those stock purchases. Adobe is doing their job. They're keeping up with the business. Keeping the software edgy, being competitive. But that's like expecting your McDonalds stock to go up just because they keep making hamburgers. Once a company has reached saturation they need to expand into new markets. Now, if Premiere were the clear winner over Avid, it would grow their market share a little, but if you're like me, you already owned Premiere right along side your Photoshop and After Effects bundle. Adobe needs to do what Apple did to expand. Put new products into the hands of new customers. Keeping up with the Pro Market is too much of a niche. They need to get a product like FCP X onto the iPads AND android iPads before Apple does. And for $79. Revamp Premiere Elements and call it Premiere Elements Pro or something. Or have they done this already?


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:37:55 pm

[Bret Williams] " They need to get a product like FCP X onto the iPads AND android iPads before Apple does"

why?

Maybe a control surface app...but why port a whole thing to an ipad?

I'm sure I'll get called a luddite all over again for disagreeing with this but it would seem more like a headache than an actual robust tool. I can see it for very VERY simple web based content for the kids or on set conveniences but not a practical platform for an edit suite unless the screen is 15 inches+ and it has a wack of ports and by then why not just make it a tablet/laptop which is already available...


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Bill Davis
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 1:02:37 am

Hummm....

Notice how FCP-X has a good part of it's user interface "off screen." (the project library, the event browser, various HUDs etc. that kinda "swipe in" when you click on the proper icons?

For all we know, they might come up with an effective iPad implementation that uses a simple "2 window" screen with the timeline displayed below the viewer - and then everything else you needs comes up with a swipe or tap to "float around" the display.

That would actually kinda rock on an iPad for "on the go" editing.

Maybe just as X borrowed some code and ideas from iMovie - maybe the next iMovie might borrow some of the interface ideas back from X and turn into a sweet little iPad editing program.

Apple always seems to have their eye on what their customers might enjoy having in the future.

No telling where this product family is going, really.

But I think it's actually kinda exciting once you stop demanding it be a single thing (a top tier pro's only editing system) and imagine what it might be for the widest possible swath of people who need to edit at the bottom, middle AND top ends of the editing spectrum.

FWIW.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 2:27:53 am

Yes Bill...I notice where this is trending. I disagree, or don't have an appreciation for it simply for the very fact it's just a silly gimmick to throw an edit suite on an 9inch pad and would be nothing more than a toy.... You want it, all the power to you...hope you get it...more gadgets NEED MORE GADGETS! I hope it makes pancakes too


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Bill Davis
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 5:01:08 am

[Jamie Franklin] "Yes Bill...I notice where this is trending. I disagree, or don't have an appreciation for it simply for the very fact it's just a silly gimmick to throw an edit suite on an 9inch pad and would be nothing more than a toy.... You want it, all the power to you...hope you get it...more gadgets NEED MORE GADGETS! I hope it makes pancakes too"

All I can tell you is that everyone want to tell time.

Once, that meant you had to look at the sun or the shadows and guesstimate.
That led to sundials. Then clocks. Then digital clocks.

Now, you probably have fifty clocks in your life. Your computer has one, your microwave has one, your phone has one.

The utility of the clock was strong enough to adapt that from a "specialist" tool in the tower in the center or town, into something that migrated to the class of "people who NEED to monitor time" like train conductors or a watchmen - then it spread out to the general population.

If you don't think manipulating time based visual information (of which video is ONE form) will become a general purpose task, fine. I do.

Just like magic markers made "sign construction" a thing that could be done by any shop keeper who cared to. Yeah, there are still pro sign painters. But the service is not RARE anymore - there's an AlphaGraphics (or 20) in every community of size on the planet. Signs are a Commodity.

Face it. Video is becoming exactly that..

A few firms have the expertise to put gigantic signs up on stadiums. And some folks with superior artistic chops make really, really pretty ones. But day to day - you need a simple sign, you pull out a magic marker and make your own or perhaps have a buddy who has some modest artistic talent make one for you (nearly everyone knows someone like that in the modern world). Cuz once the world is awash with magic markers - it's not exclusively a specialists task anymore.

Simple as that.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 6:52:59 pm

Good god man. Nothing in your post is a justification, reason, nor immediate legitimacy to spend resources to port a 64bit, multi-core, gpu powered, software that requires, at best, minimum screen real estate to manipulate and edit a video...

A clock can be any size. Watching video can be any size. Creating video can be any size. But there are things that are just not (lets go caps here) PRACTICAL

So it becomes a gimmick. I'd rather Adobe spends their resources on meta data and management. Fixing bugs. Talking to editors. Continuing to innovate *how* we work, not *where* we work. Going out in the field. Than having to worry about porting a robust edit suite seriously not practical for the padders of the world. It can have it's uses in a variety of ways...but good god that's not what was said here...it was GET IT ON THE IPAD TRAIN BEFORE APPLE....


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Bret Williams
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 6:28:56 am

I wasn't suggesting that iPad editing was a great professional endeavor. My comment about Adobe needing to get a really good app on the iPad relates more to the comments being made about Apple starting over. Yes, ditching us, only to get us back again. Perhaps half a generation later. More about the recreating the Final Cut Express first and then Final Cut Pro later. It was the other way around the first time. FCP, the FCP express. However with iMovie already here, FCP X is caught in the middle. Watch for FCP X tech to trickle down to iMovie, as FCP X grows into more of a contender.

If Adobe just keeps only chasing the Pro Market, they'll be a sort of 3rd party spoiler. For arguments sake, say Avid has half the TV and Film industry, and FCP has the other half. FCP leaves and the FCP half have to decide Avid or Premiere. Half will probably go Avid leaving Avid with 75% of that market. Premiere is left as the underdog again, with Apple completely dominating the other market that is arguably just as big... the consumer / prosumer market. And that market on iPads isn't tied to Mac or PC. But in the end, if they like their little FCP X iPad app or iMovie iPad app, they'll probably buy an iMac to run the bigger version. AND STILL, that is what Apple is about. Hardware.

That's why Adobe should be aiming for some sort of Premiere iPad app. FCPX is going to come to the iPad I think in some fashion better than iMovie. Hook 'em young and early. Then they can go to Premiere on EITHER Mac or PC. When they see the cost of a Mac they'll choose the PC.

BTW iPads aren't always worse for some things. Just different. For example I could care less about Garage band on the Mac, but on my iPhone or an iPad I can't put it down. Playing and writing drums and guitar and keyboard is a blast. Not so much with a mouse on a regular computer. I wouldn't have envisioned this. I think there may be similar ways video and animation can benefit from touch and gestures. Heck, I made a mothers day video with the kids on my iPhone. In minutes I had edited a couple shots of the kids wishing a happy mothers day. Added a graphics package and picked some music. The graphics weren't custom. The music was royalty free cheese. But it did a job and was fun.


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 12:13:05 pm

We are investing in tablet applications and with the announcement of the Creative Cloud, there are a number of apps that are available for iPad and Android including a very functional Photoshop Touch app.

My personal pov is that you need to have the right task for the device. IOW, building an NLE on a tablet will probably be an exercise in frustration right now. However, if you build something that enhances a device and edit experience, then you've got something. I've got two ideas in mind that would fit that bill.

In time, I think that you'll see more functionality and tasks go to tablets as they become more powerful and UI experiences resolve.

My 2 cents,
Dennis - Adobe guy


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Bret Williams
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 2:16:50 pm

I figure ya'll are of course. But dig in fast! I'm starting to feel like Apple went "Hey Premiere, quick, look over there, we're leaving the Pro market!" And Premiere runs over to grab it's share while Apple happily gobbles up the majority of the low end market and Avid still retains it's share plus a chunk of the Pro market that Apple left. Apple still retains a good chunk of loyal following and slowly builds itself back up with a completely new product paradigm (which all the school kids will be using) and then eats away at Adobe / Avid since those edit models won't make much sense to them.


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 3:55:15 pm

It certainly is an interesting time. I think that Adobe definitely wants to be aware of not relinquishing it's historical user base in the middle type user (prosumer). We think competition is good and stand by it. It makes the products better more quickly for users.

I will say though that even if Mac does take a good portion of the consumer/prosumer space, it will be on the Mac platform only. Then, in many ways it is competing against itself with iMovie vs. FCPX. The PC platform will still be vibrant for many years to come.

Thanks for the input.


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 6:23:37 pm

I'd love to see an Audition window option for a pad. Integrate it in a scroll down in view mode, >Extend to tablet. Instead of a whole new application...

That would be awesomeauce! © Jamie Franklin


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Jamie Franklin
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 23, 2011 at 6:16:15 pm

That's why I agreed that an "App" designed for "controller" purposes is just fine, and I completely welcome that. I almost grabbed a pad for the Color virtual controller but couldn't justify the cost on something DOA. A tablet just isn't something I "need" at the moment...

If Davinci gets one, I'll start re-evaluating that. Even still: In terms of the NLE experience, it's just not practical now, nor in the future unless tablets are significantly larger, but I would still much rather have a laptop/tablet touchscreen combo...but even that is a serious indulgence.

Simple interfacing like garage band are perfect. I won't disagree. Audio is a whole other animal that in my opinion screams out "touch" screen *now*...there are some amazingly creative and intuitive apps coming or arrived. Bjorks new album, custom interface, mix her music thing is incredible and I want a pad just to go play with it...but I'd never put it down. And that's how they getcha


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Gary Huff
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 21, 2011 at 4:26:20 pm

[Bill Davis] But day to day - you need a simple sign, you pull out a magic marker and make your own or perhaps have a buddy who has some modest artistic talent make one for you (nearly everyone knows someone like that in the modern world). Cuz once the world is awash with magic markers - it's not exclusively a specialists task anymore.

So if you were in need of a new car and you saw a cardboard sign on the side of the road written in magic marker that said "Car For Sale! Call (XXX) XXX-XXXX" you'd actually spend the time to check out that car?


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Richard Cardonna
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 3:00:45 pm

Wow you must be a Craig Seeman alumni, right?

RCardonna


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:12:24 pm

How about Apple is about to replace the MacPro with something new and equally powerful if not more so.
Give me Xeon and GPU power in a rack mountable and/or stackable design with lots of Thunderbolt ports.



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Gary Huff
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 6:10:01 pm

Craig Seeman How about Apple is about to replace the MacPro with something new and equally powerful if not more so. Give me Xeon and GPU power in a rack mountable and/or stackable design with lots of Thunderbolt ports.

What if Apple doesn't do that?


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 8:17:03 pm

[Gary Huff] "What if Apple doesn't do that?"

When you consider that many people are get other Macs as adjuncts to MacPros, It's just not likely for them to note have a replacement. MacPros have an impact on sales on the entire line. A person with one MacPro might also have a MacBookPro a MacMini or two and maybe even an iMac. That's the nature of an ecosystem based product line. The Halo effect works at both ends of the product line. MacPros, as they are, aren't sustainable because the top of the line iMac covers more ground that ever before.

At one time the iMac was not expandable. Now the top iMac has two Thunderbolt ports.They have to do something to sell the next tier up. Of course one might argue that they could simply add a four Thunderbolt port iMac but there's a GPU limitation as well. There's also the issue a built in monitor which the MacMini doesn't have. That's why I think it's inevitable that the MacPro replacement will be like a Mini but rack mountable with multiple Thunderbolt ports and better GPU options.

Basically I don't see the "doesn't" as a viable business option. The is a company that still makes the iPod Classic as well. The MacBook was discontinued only when the gap closed between the Air and MacBookPro.

Pick what might happen if/when the MacPro is discontinued but that nothing will happen just isn't likely. This is especially so when you consider that they keep pushing up the system demands that FCPX and Motion need.



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Gary Huff
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 9:32:42 pm

Craig Seeman When you consider that many people are get other Macs as adjuncts to MacPros, It's just not likely for them to not have a replacement. MacPros have an impact on sales on the entire line.

Just how it wouldn't be likely for Apple to not have a direct replacement for FCP 7 when they EOL it?


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 10:02:06 pm

[Gary Huff] "Just how it wouldn't be likely for Apple to not have a direct replacement for FCP 7 when they EOL it?"

Because Apple is a hardware company.

Because FCP 7 was based on out of house code along with much of the rest of the suite.

Because they wanted to make an NLE that would sell more hardware across the product line.

Note how FCPX would not run on the stock GPUs of MacPros made from 2006-2008. Apple does not want to sell software that allows you to sit on the same computer for 3 to 5 years. Granted many people, myself included, just bough Radeon 5770 or 5870 cards even though they're not officially supported on those models according to Apple.

Whether FCPX itself was desirable enough to get people to upgrade their computers for it is another story. That's one reason why they're motivated to improve FCPX . . . and push it so you'd need newer Macs to use it.

Given that the next major upgrade to FCPX will be early next year, it would be by then that a new replacement to MacPro is introduced. Imagine what you'd need to run 4 or more AVCHD/H.264 multicam streams. Imagine that you might have to use a Thunderbolt system to get broadcast monitor output. Again that's not to say that FCPX will be desirable enough to do that but I will say that's likely their goal.

It's not so much that Apple has become a consumer company but a commodity product company. They've learned that it's very profitable for them to get you to buy a new gadget every couple of years and they may want you to do that with your computers as well. Note how they no longer have replaceable batteries in their laptops.

The only potential "trap" I see in the replacement box is that they may "lock down" the GPU so that you'd have to upgrade the system rather than replace the GPU as many of us did with 2006-2008 boxes. I do hope that's not the case though.

Think about what a commodity (not consumer) company might do with their higher end computers.

This is also why I think it will be a stackable/mountable box. The single box might have a lower cost of entry but a "Pro" user might buy multiple boxes to increase CPU power through clustering. Basically rather than an "open" workstation, it may be a scalable by adding units. This is how I think a commodity company would handle making the "Pro" market a profitable niche. Again this doesn't mean all, many, any "Pro" will like it but I do think, just like they made a new NLE, I think they will undertake a new attempt at that market.

I thought it was interesting that others were thinking of a similar box the night Evan Schechtmen gave his most recent presentation. . . . That doesn't make those of us thinking this way "right" but it is what some of us expect Apple to do if they're interested in the "Pro" market (what they think is the Pro market).



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Gary Huff
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 11:19:56 pm

Craig Seeman Think about what a commodity (not consumer) company might do with their higher end computers.

I don't think there's a lot of evidence that Apple has any desire to do anything but be a consumer company.

I think they will cancel the Mac Pro line and Thunderbolt, well, hey, if a third party does something with it, great. But you aren't going to see any Mac Minis with Xeon processors or anything more than a typically-powered GPU.


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Jay Levi
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 6:50:18 am

Dream on

Apple is dropping pro support period, they decided to stick with providing as many tablets to the world as fast as possible while the rest catch up, which means this will continue for another year, then mayb then after tablets drop prices into the 50 buck ranges will we see something crazier, maybe nano cards with processors attacked to canon cameras with wifi to LCD screens, who knows


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 3:21:36 pm

And you're not capable of backing your comments with any fact or even a reasoned supposition. That's business acumen? Apple computer revenue just about matchers their iPad revenue. That's already been posted.



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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:18:49 pm

The powerful horse drawn carriage may be replaced with a more powerful hot rod.



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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 5:20:39 pm

All still in the online store and all shipping except 12 core which is 2-4 days so the channel doesn't seem to be running dry.
http://store.apple.com/us_smb_78313/browse/home/shop_mac/family/mac_pro



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David Lazaro Saz
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 6:20:33 pm

Which means?


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:10:33 pm

When was the last time someone walked in and bought a MacPro, graphics card, or HPz800 from a physical store?

My answer is never.

Just curious on what your experience is.

Jeremy


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Steve Connor
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:23:43 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "When was the last time someone walked in and bought a MacPro, graphics card, or HPz800 from a physical store?

My answer is never.

Just curious on what your experience is.
"


Once had a motherboard blow on a MacPro at a very critical time on a project, being able to drive to the local Apple store and buy a replacement off the shelf saved the day!

"My Name is Steve and I'm an FCPX user"


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 11:45:07 pm

[Steve Connor] "Once had a motherboard blow on a MacPro at a very critical time on a project, being able to drive to the local Apple store and buy a replacement off the shelf saved the day!"

Yes, theres that scenario in which I'd go to a reseller, or edit on a laptop till the new one arrived.

But I'm talking about a new machine.

What those of you that have HPs or Dells? OK, that's a trick question.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 10:19:25 pm

Hmm, I did buy my MacPro from Tekserve. Normally I'd use MacMall. If I decide to go BTO that would be the Apple Online store.

I can't see much reason for buying in the Apple store given It's a beast to transport compared to shipping to my front door. Of course if you need one ASAP for a job it's store vs overnight shipping.

Also think of the purpose of the Apple store playground. Would playing with a stock MacPro in a store show you a better experience than an iMac? Not likely. Having them out to play with beyond maybe one to show off the case, doesn't make much retail store sense.

If the had a "Pro" area with an AJA IO XT and a Pegasus RAID packed with 4K video . . . oh right, you can't use those on the present "Thunderboltless" MacPro.

Well, they could show their $1000 Thunderbolt Mac monitor hooked up to . . . ? Ok Maybe a MacBookPro for that. That's because you want to spend $1000 on a Thunderbolt monitor for . . . ?

There's no reason to show the current MacPro in an Apple retail store environment. There are very good reasons to replace it though.



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 11:49:26 pm

[Craig Seeman] "There's no reason to show the current MacPro in an Apple retail store environment. There are very good reasons to replace it though."

Agreed.

I don't know what's ahead for the MacPro. It seems if they were going to kill it, they would have killed it.

I am sure there's a bigger plan besides "just use an iMac".


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 10:04:45 pm

[David Lazaro Saz] "Which means?"

They're going to replace it with something new, better, different (understanding that it is what they think will be better).



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Bill Davis
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 7:16:20 pm

I was in an Apple store last week as well

And watching the "Genius" crew help people with half a dozen laptops - made me remember the time maybe 5 years ago when I had a memory glitch in my MacPro and dragged it into the Apple Store on a Saturday so that they could check out a memory module I suspected had gone bad, and maybe replace it on the spot and get me back to editing to help me meet my Monday deadline...

I remember feeling really odd having to drag my big silver beast on a rolling cart through the retail store.

If that NEVER happens to me again, I won't miss it.

The tower was a great form factor for a fixed edit suite. But that's clearly not the only place "editing" happens today.

For what it's worth.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Frank Gothmann
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 19, 2011 at 8:41:08 pm

And once again: it is clearly not the place "editing" is happening today for you and in your world.
It is for a lot of other people and I dare say the vast majority of people professionally editing today are NOT editing on a laptop.


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Bill Davis
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 12:44:42 am

But it is, Frank.

When I have to update my Legacy work, I have to go back to the desktop system and FCP-7.

I simply can't even FATHOM starting any new projects on that system.

X simply "feels" much, MUCH quicker now that I have experience in using it.

For me, it's like going back to chopping down the tree with an ax after you've had some experience with a chainsaw.

Actually, now that I've written the line above, I can tell it's gonna make some people defensive or angry. YES, it's a tortured analogy. Deal with it. We all know that some editors face predominantly smaller trees. Other editors face redwoods. Not all solutions fit all editors - but that's no reason to argue that a person can't experience a chainsaw after using an AX and see the value.

Period.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Martin Curtis
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 12:33:50 pm

Several things come to mind when discussing the future iterations of the MacPro.
What does a Mac Pro have that no other Mac has?
I'd say high speed expansion. Whether it is additional hard drives (SATA) or expansion cards (PCI) no other Mac has the ability to give you access to such speed. Until Thunderbolt came along.

I'd also say cores, lots of cores. It seems that the latest high speed chips from Intel may either be frightfully expensive (in the thousands, sorry I can't remember where I saw that) or not as fast as we would like. I think these two factors, and the increase in speed from the cheaper CPUs and the increasing utilisation of the GPUs, will see the end of the high end chips. Did anyone ever buy the $10 000 Mac Pros you could spec up?

Who needs the most speed? Word users? emailers? Twitterers? Nope, editors. For rendering, and rendering being what it is this is something that may be able to be farmed out across Thunderbolt. Perhaps that is what's coming next.

The 99% is happy with i5s - a quad core i7 is even faster. I would miss the presence of the towers, but I haven't actually bought one since the G4s.

Mac in a 1U rack; Mac Mini + . Who knows. It looks like 2012 is shaping up to be just as tumultuous as 2011.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 2:48:24 pm

I think you're close to the truth.
It'll have more CPU/GPU power than a Mini, it'll be rack mountable, clustering will play a roll in expanding power and, of course, Thunderbolt.
This is how you build a commodity computer with expandable power for "Pros."



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 3:55:35 pm

[Craig Seeman] "It'll have more CPU/GPU power than a Mini, it'll be rack mountable, clustering will play a roll in expanding power and, of course, Thunderbolt."

There was another thread where we went in to detail about what Thundebolt really is in this current 10Gb config. Really, it hobbles the machine to 4x PCIe so with multiple GPUs in particular, this might get a little bottlenecky.

It's great for portables that have never had access to the bandwidth, but in this config, it's not really ready to be a bandwidth aggregator.

I do think that Apple will figure out a way to sell more "MacPro" like devices, but do you think they can do that yet with the current thunderbolt tech?

If you read the paper that Walter Soyka linked to, it reads to me as its made specifically for portable computers, not desktops.

Here's the thread (it's long, sorry): http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/335/20226

Here's the paper: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/architecture-and-technology/thunderb...

Here's the pertinent quote:

"For some power users, optimal workflows can be had with workstation performance and expandability while using a thin and light laptop. Thunderbolt technology enables using the thinnest and lightest laptops, connected, with “in the box” performance over a single external cable, to high-performance external media drives, HD displays, HD media capture and editing systems, as well as legacy I/O hubs and devices, for the utmost in performance, simplicity and flexibility."

Do you think thunderbolt is viable for clustering at this point in time?


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 4:36:20 pm

[Jeremy Garchow] "I do think that Apple will figure out a way to sell more "MacPro" like devices, but do you think they can do that yet with the current thunderbolt tech?"

GPUs, by the nature of the beast for example, will still require PCIe. That won't go away. My guess is the new machine will have two PCIe 16x slots. Some will use it for 2nd GPU, others may use them for fiber for example.

It's why a stackable Mini is not sufficient and why I think there WILL be a replacement for the MacPro with a rack mount form factor.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 5:08:24 pm

[Craig Seeman] "GPUs, by the nature of the beast for example, will still require PCIe. That won't go away. My guess is the new machine will have two PCIe 16x slots. Some will use it for 2nd GPU, others may use them for fiber for example."

But in that thread, we pretty much surmised that you won't be able to have DVI+Thunderbolt. That 16x GPU will get routed through 4x Thunderbolt. That means GPU manufacturers will have to make custom DVI less GPUs. Do you think that's viable?

I'm not worried about data speeds, those are pretty fast.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 5:19:31 pm

I'm not sure that GPU processing for grading and FX work needs to be passed out through the system, or maybe I'm missing something. I'd differentiate GPU as a system resource vs DVI as an output.



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 6:35:58 pm

[Craig Seeman] "I'm not sure that GPU processing for grading and FX work needs to be passed out through the system, or maybe I'm missing something. I'd differentiate GPU as a system resource vs DVI as an output."

Well, then we went on to say that rendering on to the GPU, then passing frames back to the system via PCIe is sloppy and "slow". This means you'd render your GPU stuff, it gets passed back via PCIe to other resources, then shoe horned down the thunderbolt port. I was under the same moression as you at first, but after having that discussion, I'm not so sure. In a 10Gb system, Thunderbolt present a bottleneck to full length PCIe machines as all data and display info must pass through the thunderbolt controller.


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Craig Seeman
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 9:02:43 pm

I've understood from a few sources that the lack of broadcast monitoring, for example, is OS related and apparently that will be resolved by the time the next major release of FCPX happens which should also follow a Lion update that I suspect will be needed. How Apple is tackling this issue, we just wont know, until they release it. I do suspect though, that this is a big reason why broadcast monitoring isn't there yet.



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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 9:44:57 pm

[Craig Seeman] "I've understood from a few sources that the lack of broadcast monitoring, for example, is OS related and apparently that will be resolved by the time the next major release of FCPX happens which should also follow a Lion update that I suspect will be needed. How Apple is tackling this issue, we just wont know, until they release it. I do suspect though, that this is a big reason why broadcast monitoring isn't there yet.

"


That's broadcast display.

I'm talking about GUI/GPU display. Just wondering how you felt about a 4x machine, really.


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Frank Gothmann
So... Craig...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 4:19:21 pm

So, Craig, if your envisioned Mac-Mini with TB connectivity and dreams of clustering is such a great replacement for those oldfashioned towers... how come Apple is using server grade Xeon hardware with pcie connectivity and Isilion storage for their own icloud services.

No Minis there, no Thunderbolt, no OSX Lion Server. Or are you telling me that next year, when your Super-Mini shows up they'll toss it all out and put your Minis in.
Or is it rather that the Mini (and current Mac Pro btw) just doesn't cut it in high performance computing and storage environments including high-end broadcast (which also what Isilion is used for)?


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Craig Seeman
Re: So... Craig...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 4:39:52 pm

[Frank Gothmann] "So, Craig, if your envisioned Mac-Mini with TB connectivity "

Nope, never claimed MacMini. It'll be the same form but much (MUCH) larger, rack mountable. It'll have two 16PCIe slots. It will LOOK LIKE a LARGE MacMini. It will NOT be a MacMini.



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Frank Gothmann
Re: So... Craig...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 5:23:43 pm

That doesn't answer my question. If you think this is what's coming, and it is a proper replacement performance wise for a tower archtitecture, why is Apple using "stoneage" server-class xeon hardware and pcie connectivity from other manufacturers?


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Craig Seeman
Re: So... Craig...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 8:53:08 pm

[Frank Gothmann] "why is Apple using" . . .
Because the MacPro replacement hasn't been delivered yet. It may depend on when and what volume they can get the chips they plan on using from Intel.



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Frank Gothmann
Re: So... Craig...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 9:17:11 pm

You cannot honestly believe that's the reason, do you?
And when your anticipated machines arrive the put 12 Petabyte of Isilion storage and all the HP servers on Ebay, right?


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Ray Wang
Re: Goodbye macpro towers...
on Nov 20, 2011 at 2:59:55 pm

Mini in a 1U rack.

http://www.sonnettech.com/product/rackmacmini.html

I do remember reading comments in the past that the pros demanded ECC memory (only supported by workstation class CPUs), fiber channel card (which still outperforms TB), workstation class GPU for 3D work and 64Gb+ memory (for Photoshop work). None of which will likely to fit into a small factor desktop / notebook.

I am not in the business but I will be looking for something along the lines of Mac Pro due to the following shortcomings of my current MBP:
- Fan noise. In FCP X GUI gets jerky and fan is on most times (background rendering is off)
- Heat. CPU throttle means I am not getting 100% performance out of the CPU
- Spiderweb of peripherals with its own power supply. Much "cleaner"/compact desk space and cheaper to have everything in one box

Rather than connecting TB to Raid why not buy Mac Pro and do raid internally?

---
Ray


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