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> insanely powerful

I remain amazed at Apple's marketing. There's literally nothing "powerful" in this box that you couldn't plug into a Supermicro motherboard almost two years ago. You can make integration arguments or dither about Apple-specific devices or software all day. But as for "powerful"... this is a 14nm Xeon workstation board.




It's got a lot extra proprietary components in it that make it attractive for those that want those capabilities, and it runs MacOS. Often MacOS is the extra $500 or so of any Apple machine you buy. If you don't care for MacOS or the security coprocessor or the extra Apple-specific expansion stuff, you can definitely build a cheaper PC that's more powerful.


> extra proprietary components

Exactly. So not "insanely powerful" by any objective measure as used by other folks in the industry. It's just secret magic applesauce[1]. Yet you feel free to throw adjective around anyway because it just "feels" like it must be "powerful" based on the language you're reading about it. To wit, I remain amazed at Apple's marketing.

[1] Which, fine. Maybe you really need that applesauce and the 2017 Supermicro board wouldn't have ever worked for you. Great! Still not an argument about "power".


In what world is a 28-core xeon with 1.5 TB of RAM and 2 dual GPUs (effectively 4 GPUs) not a powerful spec for a desktop? Aren't we still in the era of most desktops having 4 cores and a single GPU? I don't bear any love for Apple, but this computer is still pretty cool.

Steam hardware survey shows most popular spec these days is 4 cores, 8GB RAM, and a mid-range GPU. I'd argue that most machines running steam are more powerful than average given that they're generally gaming rigs. https://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey

Firefox gets a larger swath of the population. 2 cores is by far the most popular with them. https://data.firefox.com/dashboard/hardware

For the people who wanted the Mac Pro that I know of (primarily Apple nerds who were waiting for this new updated machine) they wanted to use it ask a desktop computer. For a desktop computer, this thing is pretty insane in every regard - Xeon CPU, ECC RAM, crazy amounts of GPU capabilities, and yes, price too.


> In what world is a 28-core xeon with 1.5 TB of RAM and 2 dual GPUs (effectively 4 GPUs) not a powerful spec for a desktop? ... I don't bear any love for Apple, but this computer is still pretty cool.

Dell's Precision workstations and HP's Z8 workstations could already be configured to match or exceed that, well before Apple's announcement. What's so special about a configuration that is the same as existing workstations and is shaped pretty much the same as existing workstations? It's the same Intel CPU as everyone else uses, it's the same RAM as everyone else uses, etc.


If you’ve ever used similarly-specced Dell and Apple machines, you should know where the difference is: noise, build quality, long-term support, predictability in OS interaction.

Dollar for dollar, this MacPro is not particularly egregious, imho, once you factor in those elements. Maybe it could have done with a slightly cheaper entry-level option, but they don’t want to risk cannibalizing their laptop market. MacPro prices start exactly where MBP prices end: that’s not a coincidence, and I’m surprised pundits have not picked up on this. The real message from Apple is: “if you can get by with laptop specs, buy a laptop (because we make more money on that form-factor, due to higher numbers).“

The monitor is a different discussion altogether. Apple gets in and out of that market every few years, probably depending on whether they think there is some technological improvement available that allows them to claim “best in class” at reasonable price points.


> If you’ve ever used similarly-specced Dell and Apple machines, you should know where the difference is: noise, build quality, long-term support, predictability in OS interaction.

I have used both Dell and HP workstations and corresponding Apple products to a lesser extent and, to be honest, I really don't find that much difference between them in terms of noise, build quality, or long-term support. As for quality of OS interaction, I've seen the gray screen of death far more often than I've seen BSODs or kernel panics the past couple of years; so much for that.

> Dollar for dollar, this MacPro is not particularly egregious.

Oh, I agree; I know all too well that fully kitted out workstations are quite expensive and would concur that the Mac Pro is not too far out of line in this. But then again, nothing in my earlier post concerned price so I don't know why you bring it up.


It comes with a stylish case and a side order of courage.


They could be configured with double the specs. Here’s an article from Sept. 2017: https://petapixel.com/2017/09/13/hp-z8-pc-can-upgraded-insan...

3TB RAM 56 cores 48TB

No word on cost, but the entry level goes down to below $3k.


Z8s can be configured >$100k. Also those have fewer usable PCIe slots. Dollar for dollar I'm not sure the HP or Dell workstations are much cheaper than the Mac Pro if at all. They seem like just a different spin on some standard Intel configurations, with build quality good but not like Apple's.


Did you try to configure it to the same specs as the base Mac Pro? I tried and it is 9000usd vs 6000usd


Apple reality-distortion.

Put OK tech in a nice box, add a bit of amazing, and Apple's done it again! $6000 please!


> In what world is a 28-core xeon with 1.5 TB of RAM and 2 dual GPUs (effectively 4 GPUs) not a powerful spec for a desktop?

Your standard was "insanely powerful", which implies some kind of notability. In fact 28 core 14nm Xeons broadly similar to the ones Apple is using were shipping by Q3 of 2017. You could even buy boards at the time with TWO sockets: TWICE as "powerful" a desktop as Apple's "insane" one from the summer of 2019.

Again, this just isn't notable hardware from a "power" perspective. It's the same stuff everyone else has been shipping for two years, just with applesauce.


I think steam is unlikely to be used on common workstations and digital signage.

Most machines running steam are run at home, and if you can afford a computer, you can play free games on Steam.




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