Arne C writes:
What we Pros have now, is a “worst case” scenario.
MPG: Cylindrical, or should I say, not tubular.
High-end video user Robert B writes:
Personally I would have preferred a larger unit with more internal options (my Early 2008 MacPro has only one PCIe slot free). However, as always, you either play/work by Apple's "rules" or you go elsewhere (with all that entails). Bitching and moaning certainly isn't going to change the hardware on offer! Let's face it, if Apple had shown a tower with 6 HHD bays and 8 PCIe slots and 10 USB 3 ports you would still be hearing "but I need 10 HHD bays and 12 PCIe slots and two dozen USB ports!". Again personally, I'd like to see an option with one of the GPUs removed and extra PCIe flash storage fitted instead. Or additional memory. Who knows what the final specifications/options might be by Oct-Dec?
You can either look at the situation as a glass half empty - external expansion - the clutter! the cords!, noisy fans! or half full - a tiny computer with almost limitless (well 36) external expansion which could even be integrated with built in TB sockets & stackable with no fan noise at all! Apple itself could offer such expansion (just as they offer Airport Express/Time Capsule) or someone like OWC could fill the void. No need to always look at the worse possible outcome. Given the minuscule size of the new MacPro a couple of external units added to it will still have a smaller footprint than the existing design.
If nothing else the fact that external TB connected expansion IS going to be necessary will drive the development of these units to everyone's advantage - even if they are connected to laptops or iMacs.
MPG: It is correct that nothing anyone says is going to change Apple’s plans.
But it is silly to throw out a straw man of umpteen ports. 4 hard drive bays and 3 PCIe slots has proven quite adequate.
As for the expansion idea, this already exists. It is called a MacMini or iMac, and with enough cables, tons of gear can be heaped about. A heap of parts is not elegant, and hardly the same as one neat and tidy tower system with one very higih quality power supply and quiet fans cooling all.
Two years later, Thunderbolt is largely MIA. Adoption and progress has lagged and cost has remained high relative to alternatives. Will Thunderbolt 2 now take off, now that the Mac Pro will drive a “pro” market for it? All Mac Pro users better hope so.
Alan T writes:
I'm not a "pro" in the sense of using a MacPro for my livelihood, but I never liked the encased hard drive a la iMac, and I never liked the fact that my USB hub(s) could never seem to get enough power from iMac to run anything more powerful than my iPod, and I've always liked getting the monitor of my choice. Getting a MacPro was a great move. Yeah, it's more than I need; but the iMac was much less than I needed.
Regarding all the Apple new product spin, I'll just say what we all know: change is a feature of life, but not all change is good. Oh, and sometimes you can be just a little too cute for your own good. Smaller footprint in the new model? Is it really smaller when you're moving the two, three, four or more separate items that you need to constitute your new MacPro? Smaller with more wires?
If I were running a business such that I really need my MacPro(s), I think I'd have four options: (1) Buy up the existing model and be prepared to use it for the next 5 years; (2) go all in with the new model; (3) go the "Hackintosh" route; or (4) plan a gradual switch back to Windows. If I had the technical ability, option number (3) would be my choice. Now, if this new "trash can" (or bird feed pellet) comes in at an un-Apple-like price then it might make the bitter pill easier to digest ....
MPG: Cures can be worse than the disease, which isn’t all bad.