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The Mac Pro: Power to be Tapped


The Mac Pro is one beautiful machine and one expensive machine. Considered to be Apple’s most powerful computer, it is engineered to perform. Although it has the fastest everything in it that you can possibly buy from Apple, you might be in for a touch of a surprise.

Coming from the iMac

If you’re coming from Apple’s top end iMac decked out with all the trimmings you’ll have one extremely fast machine. You would though, based on everything you’ve heard, assume that a Mac Pro would outperform the iMac.

This is not the case. A six core Mac Pro in fact feels and is a bit slower than a top of the line iMac. This at first is a bit disappointing but then you look at your new Mac Pro and consider what it’s capable of there’s no way you will return it. Like I said, it is one beautiful machine.

The Problem

It’s actually very simple to understand why the Mac Pro does not perform as fast as a top of the line iMac. The software simply has not been written or optimized for the machine. It hasn’t been designed to perform as well on the Xeon chips and it hasn’t been designed for a six core unit.

The iMac is a four core system. Over the years, software has been fine tuned for the iMac. This though will likely happen with the Mac Pro. So don’t think you’ll unbox your Mac Pro and have a screamer today. That simply won’t happen. It would be wonderful if this were the case but it isn’t possible considering the chip architecture that has dominated and the newness of this chip architecture.

Somehow it’s all Fine

Regardless it is somehow all fine. Yes, the Mac Pro is not inexpensive especially if you’ve done it up right. I think the best configuration for this machine is the six core model as it’s a step up, once the software can take advantage of it, from an iMac.

Secondly, I loaded this machine with 32 gigs of memory. Memory simply will not be an issue and it is fast memory.

Rather than getting a large internal drive, as that would slow down the delivery process, which is already having a very hard time keeping up to demand, I went with a 256 gig internal drive. However, to complement this, I purchased a Lacie 512 SSD drive.

The applications and all of the system will reside on the internal drive. The 512 meg external Thunderbolt drive will house the user folders. All the data will sit on this drive making for a highly efficient system.

The Computer is and Looks Fantastic

You have to see this computer to see why it would be impossible to go back to an iMac. It is amazingly impressive. Some might wonder about all the peripherals that hang off of the computer. In fact, I only have one more peripheral and that’s the Thunderbolt SSD than I had before. But there is something beautiful in seeing those peripherals connected to your computer and Thunderbolt screen. It just looks wonderfully powerful. It looks like a computer.

Don’t get me wrong. The iMac is a work of art in both design and the way in which everything gets housed in the screen. For what you get and can do I would contend the iMac is a very good value.

However, although the Mac Pro isn’t for everyone as it is one expensive machine, it is for a larger audience now than it used to be. It will remain the computer of choice for the professional who produces movies or music, compiles photo displays and for the science oriented person who needs to crunch numbers, yet I think this Mac Pro is going to appeal to a broader audience regardless of price. I think this has already happened. WWDC 2013 was a good barometer of this.

For the people the Mac Pro isn’t exactly designed for the computer will likely perform better than an iMac but won’t likely show the raw crunching horsepower for those it has been designed for. The ones it is marginally designed for though brings with it esoteric value that makes this one machine impossible to give up.

To say you’re in love with your computer might sound strange yet many car fanatics say they love their cars. There’s more than one ad playing during the showing of the Superbowl that demonstrates this. I therefore can say without it sounding a little over the top I love my Mac Pro. I am convinced this computer will somehow outperform the high end iMac. Software will be designed to specifically take advantage of its capabilities. This is one beautiful machine and it is so Apple. Not in a million years would this beauty get returned to the Apple store. It’s here to stay.

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