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#1 Tetsuya

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 07:44 PM

I dont remember the website that everyone usually goes to to determine those things.  

The funds are coming in for a new Pro for me (so that my fiance can inherit my old 1st-gen Pro) - is there a refresh coming in the next month or so?

if there is, waiting is not a big deal, but if not, or if it is likely to be very marginal, then i'm not going to bother.

Thanks

#2 the Battle Cat

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 07:57 PM

http://buyersguide.m...rs.com/#Mac_Pro

Eric5h5 says this is the second longest wait between refreshes in Apple history.  I'm waiting for my new Mac Pro too.
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#3 Eric5h5

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 08:25 PM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 25 March 2010 - 07:57 PM, said:

Eric5h5 says this is the second longest wait between refreshes in Apple history.

According to those bar graphs there it's almost the longest now.  Someone reportedly wrote an email to Steve Jobs complaining about how everything is all iPad this and iPad that and what about Macbook Pro and Mac Pro updates, eh wot?  And Jobs said "Not to worry."  So yeah.

--Eric

#4 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 09:07 PM

I'd hold out for the update, as I don't think it'll be marginal on the GPU side of things. ATI's 5xxx series has been out since before christmas, and Nvidia is releasing their new series in about a week. Those cards performances are sensational, I've got the 5850 in my homebuild and it performs better then a GTX 285, and obviously the 5870 is even better.

The Nehalem CPU's get an update to hexacore (6 core), and 32nm (less energy and heat) a week or so ago.

My predictions for the high end Mac Pro:

12 core (dual hexacore) , probably around 3 GHz
5870 or GTX 480
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#5 The Liberator

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 09:44 PM

View PostEric5h5, on 25 March 2010 - 08:25 PM, said:

According to those bar graphs there it's almost the longest now.  Someone reportedly wrote an email to Steve Jobs complaining about how everything is all iPad this and iPad that and what about Macbook Pro and Mac Pro updates, eh wot?  And Jobs said "Not to worry."  So yeah.

--Eric
Ha, I did not know Jobs actually replied to those emails. What do you know…

View PostSneaky Snake, on 25 March 2010 - 09:07 PM, said:

I'd hold out for the update, as I don't think it'll be marginal on the GPU side of things. ATI's 5xxx series has been out since before christmas, and Nvidia is releasing their new series in about a week. Those cards performances are sensational, I've got the 5850 in my homebuild and it performs better then a GTX 285, and obviously the 5870 is even better.

The Nehalem CPU's get an update to hexacore (6 core), and 32nm (less energy and heat) a week or so ago.

My predictions for the high end Mac Pro:

12 core (dual hexacore) , probably around 3 GHz
5870 or GTX 480
Correct me if I am wrong, (which I probably am); I thought the arrival of GPU's in Apple computers lag fairly behind when they are brought out by the manufacturers. For what I remember, it took more than a year to get the 8800GTM in the iMac and 4850, and more than several months to get the 8800GT, 4870 and 285GTX (or whatever it is) in the Mac Pros.

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#6 Fourth Horseman

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 08:42 PM

I've been waiting anxiously for an update on the Mac Pro, as well. I've got the money saved up, and I think it's (well past) time for my trusty old PowerMac G5 to be retired to file server duty.

Do you guys think there's any chance of getting a system that would support SLI / Crossfire on the new systems, or is that the type of thing that's just not likely in a workstation class machine?
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#7 PeopleLikeFrank

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 08:57 PM

View PostFourth Horseman, on 06 April 2010 - 08:42 PM, said:

I've been waiting anxiously for an update on the Mac Pro, as well. I've got the money saved up, and I think it's (well past) time for my trusty old PowerMac G5 to be retired to file server duty.

Do you guys think there's any chance of getting a system that would support SLI / Crossfire on the new systems, or is that the type of thing that's just not likely in a workstation class machine?

0%
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#8 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 09:40 PM

View PostPeopleLikeFrank, on 06 April 2010 - 08:57 PM, said:

0%

What he said.

If your optimistic, maybe 0.5%.

The Liberator said:

Correct me if I am wrong, (which I probably am); I thought the arrival of GPU's in Apple computers lag fairly behind when they are brought out by the manufacturers. For what I remember, it took more than a year to get the 8800GTM in the iMac and 4850, and more than several months to get the 8800GT, 4870 and 285GTX (or whatever it is) in the Mac Pros.

True, it did take a while, but remember that when those cards came out they were the current generation of GPU's. The Mac Pro usually gets the latest generation of GPU. It's just that sometimes there isn't a Mac Pro refresh until well after the new cards come out. The 5xxx series from ATI has been out since before christmas, and nvidia is going to be shipping their's in the coming week. I can't think of any other reason for the wait, other then a GPU from nvidia. The hexacore CPU's have been shipping for a while and there's nothing else out there really worth waiting for.

I'll put in my two cents about the Nvidia's new series, 'Fermi'. To put it bluntly: sucks. They are about 6 months behind ATI in terms of the new GPU series, and with the 6 month wait you'd think they'd release something amazing. Instead they release a card the costs about a $100 more then the 5870 and only beats it by about 10% (totally not worth it). On top of that, the only reason the card beats the 5870 is because its a power sucking toaster. Idle temps go into 70 degrees celsius, which is extremely hot, and load temps approach 100 degrees, totally unacceptable. Nvidia says that they built the cards to last in high heat, but then why are manufacturers like XFX refusing to not sell them?? The reason is because XFX traditionally offeres a double lifetime warranty on their cards, but I expect that with the potential chip failure in these new GPU's, XFX does not want to get shafted with tons of dying hardware, so, for the time being, they're sticking with ATI.

Also keep in mind that ATI still has the performance crown with its 5970, which is essentially a 5870x2, but that is an x2 card, so nvidia is trying to claim the 'fastest GPU' crown. If ATI really wanted they could just release a 5890 with the same ridiculous temps and power draws as the GTX 480, but I assume ATI is just as appalled as the enthusiast crowd that Nvidia would actually do that, and is sticking with the much more sensible "best performance per dollar" crown.

It's lack in innovation really on Nvidia's part. It be like two car companies having a competition to see who can make the best sportscar. The one (ATI) puts out one that is real fast, amazing on gas, and runs like a dream. The other company takes a full 6 months longer to release their vehicle and upon release you see that it's slightly faster, but sucks on gas, and is a pig to drive. Which car would you prefer?

That's my first rant in a while, and they seem to always happen when GPU's get talked about. Hmmm...
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#9 The Liberator

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 11:17 PM

View PostSneaky Snake, on 06 April 2010 - 09:40 PM, said:

View PostThe Liberator, on 25 March 2010 - 09:44 PM, said:

Correct me if I am wrong, (which I probably am); I thought the arrival of GPU's in Apple computers lag fairly behind when they are brought out by the manufacturers. For what I remember, it took more than a year to get the 8800GTM in the iMac and 4850, and more than several months to get the 8800GT, 4870 and 285GTX (or whatever it is) in the Mac Pros.
True, it did take a while, but remember that when those cards came out they were the current generation of GPU's. The Mac Pro usually gets the latest generation of GPU. It's just that sometimes there isn't a Mac Pro refresh until well after the new cards come out. The 5xxx series from ATI has been out since before christmas, and nvidia is going to be shipping their's in the coming week. I can't think of any other reason for the wait, other then a GPU from nvidia. The hexacore CPU's have been shipping for a while and there's nothing else out there really worth waiting for…
Hmmm, okay. Upon reflection I think I can agree with that.

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#10 Eric5h5

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 02:49 PM

View PostEric5h5, on 25 March 2010 - 08:25 PM, said:

According to those bar graphs there it's almost the longest now.

And now it's tied with the longest ever.  Funny, these things used to be normally updated about every 6 months or so back in the PPC days....

--Eric

#11 teflon

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 03:32 PM

Well it used to be easy to increase the computing power in a meaningful way by simply sticking a higher clocked CPU in there. Now there's no point in Apple updating their computers till the mid-cycle speed bump from intel and the next big architectural switch.
The Mac Pro gets even less lovin' simply because it's running on Xeons which get updates quite a bit later than intel's main CPU lines.

And updating MBs and MBPs are far more compelling to Apple, since they sell more.
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#12 Eric5h5

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 05:51 PM

Well, that's kind of a chicken-and-egg thing there...it's likely that Apple would sell more Mac Pros if they paid more attention to them and made them more compelling.  There's not a huge reason for using Xeons, for example.

--Eric

#13 yo-mike

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 10:47 PM

View PostEric5h5, on 28 April 2010 - 05:51 PM, said:

Well, that's kind of a chicken-and-egg thing there...it's likely that Apple would sell more Mac Pros if they paid more attention to them and made them more compelling.  There's not a huge reason for using Xeons, for example.

--Eric
Not a huge reason?

There's every reason for Apple to be opting to use the Xeon as it's always been intended: For server, workstation, and Embedded systems. - Not that Apple cares how you use it, it's just that the Mac Pro is a professional workstation supercomputer.

The Mac Pro is a multi-processing powerhouse able to handle everything you throw at it, plus 10 times more. Yes, the Xeon processor is the best Apple could have put into the Mac Pro, and I think they've done an excellent job by far.
It's simply an amazing computer.

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#14 The Liberator

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 07:26 AM

View Postyo-mike, on 29 April 2010 - 10:47 PM, said:

Not a huge reason?

There's every reason for Apple to be opting to use the Xeon as it's always been intended: For server, workstation, and Embedded systems. - Not that Apple cares how you use it, it's just that the Mac Pro is a professional workstation supercomputer.

The Mac Pro is a multi-processing powerhouse able to handle everything you throw at it, plus 10 times more. Yes, the Xeon processor is the best Apple could have put into the Mac Pro, and I think they've done an excellent job by far.
It's simply an amazing computer.

-Mike

That is not what some people think. For what I know, Apple caring for the MP has gone down the drain, from the move away from PPC. I cannot comment myself, as I have not had experience with either computers.

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#15 Eric5h5

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 10:34 AM

View Postyo-mike, on 29 April 2010 - 10:47 PM, said:

Not a huge reason?

Correct, not a huge reason.  You can get non-Xeon chips for much cheaper and have not that much less performance; look at the benchmarks for the i7 iMacs.  It's just a prestige thing..."ooh, look, workstation-class chips!"  I'm sorry if you feel that's an acceptable reason for using them, but I don't.

--Eric

#16 teflon

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 11:21 AM

The differences between intel's top end consumer line and their Xeons are pretty minimal on the whole. I think the main reason why they went with Xeons first is because there was a dual CPU logic board readily available from intel for them, rather than the then current consumer CPUs.
That is something that hasn't changed, as far as I'm aware, so it's easier for both Apple and intel to keep things the same, and stick with Xeons rather than develop a logic board specially for the occasion, or take their trade elsewhere, which would annoy intel even more than the NVidia integrated GPU thing...

EDIT: Oh, and apparently i7s aren't even compatible with dual socket motherboards... Looks like intel deliberately splitting the market in half.

So there you have it, Xeons are here to stay.
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#17 PeopleLikeFrank

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 11:57 AM

Does the single CPU variant of the MP use the same board?

All the more reason why we want our "Mac Medium", I guess.
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#18 Eric5h5

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 12:30 PM

View PostPeopleLikeFrank, on 30 April 2010 - 11:57 AM, said:

Does the single CPU variant of the MP use the same board?

Yes, apparently you can turn a single-CPU Mac Pro into a dual-CPU Mac Pro by buying another CPU and hacking around a bit.

Quote

All the more reason why we want our "Mac Medium", I guess.

Exactly...give me a single-CPU i7 (or something) Mac Pro for $2K.  4 cores is plenty for a lot of people (which they acknowledge by selling single-CPU Mac Pros in the first place), Apple still makes a lot of $$ from that, everyone's happy.  Yes, they need another board instead of selling the same thing with one CPU removed, but gee, you know, I think they can handle that....

--Eric

#19 bobbob

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 04:31 PM

View PostEric5h5, on 30 April 2010 - 12:30 PM, said:

Yes, apparently you can turn a single-CPU Mac Pro into a dual-CPU Mac Pro by buying another CPU and hacking around a bit.
You'd probably need a socket, traces, and a bios to load it. Excuse me, EFI to load it like a stock PC's BIOS would. The only big thing the Xeons, and not even the Xeons but the 'pro' chipset* gets you, is ECC. FB-DIMMed ECC at that, which just adds to the cost. Phenom X4's or X6's with regular ECC DIMMs and a normal chipset on a cheap motherboard would be pretty much good enough for everyone but a Pro who needs to pay more because it's 'amazing'.

* yes, chipset, because obviously you get what you pay for.

Quote

intended: For server, workstation, and Embedded systems
Embedded? Really?

#20 Eric5h5

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 06:35 PM

View Postbobbob, on 30 April 2010 - 04:31 PM, said:

Embedded? Really?

Embedded systems like this, perhaps:


  Posted Image

--Eric