Apple's new Mac Pro is the most powerful computer ever. The features are aimed at creatives such as artists for visual effects, musicians and filmmakers who need a lot of computing power. Since the disappointment of the unrevisable, dustbin-like Mac Pro in 2013, Apple's creative minds have been asking for a new professional-grade computer, and Apple has finally shipped something very expensive and powerful this week. But is the new Mac Pro really what professionals have been looking for?
From the modular design that allows flexibility for upgrades to the dedicated Afterburner video editing card, which purportedly no longer requires proxy workflows, everything about the machine is extreme. It's a starting price of $ 5,999. This alone makes it unattainable for most developers, and before they begin to configure it with additional power, the price may increase by tens of thousands of dollars. In this area, artists may argue that the Mac Pro may make more sense than an investment for businesses and studios, rather than an investment for individuals who want to house them at home or in the office.
For 3D and visual effects artists, the fact is that this is not the case. & # 39; The support of Nvidia graphics cards is a major sticking point. Patrick Longstreth, a VFX supervisor in shows such as Adam Ruins Everything and Pen1
Apple has not sold computers with Nvidia cards for years and has completely discontinued support for them in the latest version of macOS. Instead, Apple has favored AMD's Radeon cards, which are widely known for being cheaper and less powerful than Nvidia's GeForce series. The pros' capabilities are limited, and the lack of Nvidia driver support has left developers of 3D rendering software in the dark, as their GPU-accelerated renderers often use only Nvidia's CUDA technology.
At WWDC, Apple showed a list of dedicated developers to support the Mac Pro and its graphics API Metal, which includes many of the companies developing 3D rendering applications such as Octane and Redshift. These apps, previously created with Nvidia GPU rendering cards, will be rewritten for AMD. The senior graphic artist of Verge Grayson Blackmon remains skeptical. "First versions of the software are usually flawed or not optimized," he says. "What would you rather buy if you have to work reliably on a project? A computer that promises great things, but essentially runs version 1.0 software or something that is cheaper and more powerful, and is tested with a lot of support? "
tl; dr: The Mac Pro and the display fill a big gap in Apple's professional product line. The prices are reasonable for the professional user. If you want to have a home, you are an idiot.
– Michael Pusateri (@Cruftbox) June 3, 2019
Instead, the Mac Pro may be more useful for studios who can afford to take along machines that are optimized for their specific needs and for receiving was warmer. Brad Watts, filmmaker and co-founder of Redd Pen Media, a production house, says the Mac Pro has finally offered serious professionals who want to stay in the Mac ecosystem a real alternative to PCs. "In my experience, compared to Windows, the software is much more streamlined and efficient."
With his recent setup of two Mac pros from 2013, Watts notes that the machines can handle most shots, including RAW with one Resolution of 4.6 KB, but that they have problems with playback when the resolutions are higher. That makes the extra power of the new Mac Pro attractive. "Even the starter pack will be unattainable for many, but I think serious studios and pros will use it to play 8K, especially with new technology like Afterburner," says Watts. "The expansion of the PCI slot, which is now upgradeable, is also enormous."
Even medium-sized animation studios or post-production houses could leverage the full power of the new Mac Pro. For example, this can be a valuable time saver for agencies that need to provide their customers with a quick preview. "I imagine they'll buy one or two, so that specs will work really fast, but then only rent machines if they have the project and take the cost into account," says William Joel, Art Director of The Verge (19459007). "It's not unusual to rent render machines for large projects, rather than buying them, so you're built to scale."
I think much of the perceived demand for a "pro-mac" is the desire after a "hobby mac", a Mac for people who like to make computers.
– Stu Maschwitz (@ 5tu) 4 June 2019
Stu Maschwitz, VFX Director, believes that Apple has delivered a product that far exceeds what most people actually wanted, and has advised against buying Mac Pro since 2015 saying that the only viable option for a Mac Pro Serving professionals in using Nvidia cards Maschwitz believes that Mac Pro audiences are not really creative minds who need extreme performance, but hobbyists looking for a computer they can open and customize .
The M ac Pro will be launched in the fall of this year. Higher configuration pricing has not yet been announced, but the potentially extremely high prices and lack of support for Nvidia cards may continue to cause professionals to switch to PCs.