The Mac Pro One Year Later: Not Worth It

After a year and a couple of months of living with a machine I was more than excited getting, my view is “was I drinking” when I bought the machine. The answer to that question is no as I don’t drink. Everything and everyone was super excited about the Mac Pro. It was supposed to be a high powered machine that supposedly almost danced.

Taken by the Hype

At the time I was considering the Mac Pro I had a beautifully configured iMac. In fact, it was fully loaded so it ran very fast and well. I can honestly say I loved that machine and it worked wonders for me.

The Mac Pro’s wonders have left me with a scalp that needs a lot of scratching. It is more than powerful enough with a six core processor, 32 gigs of memory and a terabyte of internal hard drive space. I have a total of two terabytes of flash memory or hard drive space due to the hoops I went through to get this to run smoothly.

Time for a Complete Wipe

After trying everything to get this machine to perform in any reasonable way I decided a few hours in the shop for a complete tune up was the only way to go. The machine was delivered back to me as a factory fresh system devoid of course of all the software. I had to reinstall everything from scratch.

In addition, instead of putting out $800 as I would have done had they had the terabyte hard drive part I’ve now put out $3000 for what I lovingly call – which I won’t say.

It took me a week to reinstall all the software with licenses and all. Does the d run faster with a bit of zip like I was praying for. Nope. It is as sluggish as ever. I could add memory but at 32 gigs I have plenty. I do run a lot of applications but I did on my iMac and it was nothing like this.

Is the Mac Pro worth it?

The Mac Pro impresses people there’s no doubt of that. However, it’s a different kind of system than that which Apple typically designs. It certainly looks great and people who see the setup are more than impressed.

Yet, at the end of the day the machine has to just work. I basically just believed Apple. They have a view that with the Mac Pro you externalize everything. It doesn’t work. In theory it’s interesting. Done properly I suppose it could work. But Apple Engineering failed miserably on this one.

Is the Mac Pro worth it. No. Definitely not. This is a big NO. You can buy three or four iMacs for the price of the Mac Pro.

I was happy to get away from Microsoft. I have been contemplating a PC for the first time in such a long time. Windows ten is getting good reviews and the analysts are bullish on Windows 10. Would I go to all the trouble of switching systems if I wasn’t thoroughly disappointed in Apple.

I’m dealing with a customer relations person who described herself as not technical then decided she was a engineer. Do you know you can’t run any third party apps on a Mac. I asked her in what book is this described. Of course there is no such book.

Should Apple continue along it’s course of folly, which Steve Jobs would never have allowed, the market has very interesting ways of making your life miserable.

Just say No

If for some reason your ever enchanted by the likes of the Mac Pro, my suggestion, if you want to save yourself a lot of time and grief is Just say no. There are a lot of good Mac configurations out there.

If Apple continues along its way of I want to call it stupidity, I think it’s time to shop around. The PC, like the Blackberry, has gotten a bad rap. The Blackberry is a much better device than the iPhone could ever hope to be but the iPhone has grabbed the market’s imagination. It is a good device and does more now that it could. However, it isn’t as good as Blackberry. Maybe for some though or the many, iPhone fills the bill.

It Might be Time to Shop Around

Is it time to shop around? I don’t know why not. I looked at the Surface Pro, just because I was very impressed with what I saw. I thought the machine was pricey and it had Window 8.1 on there but Windows ten will be here any day. Is it time to switch. If Apple continues down the path of self-destruction that they’re on but pretend and market themselves not, then I would look at the options.

The leader of Apple, Tim Cook, appears as a very likeable guy and maybe he is. Does he know what he’s doing. I think he knows how to move a product in the product chain but he’s not a tech guy like Steve Jobs. If you look at all the successful companies, when they’ve been successful is when a tech guy is in charge. If we could, many of us would resurrect Steve Jobs, but its not possible. Apple is on a course that I really wonder about. Let’s wait and see but if you feel you’re being unserviced in the meantime and there’s a potential that this folly might affect your business it’s time to pull the plug looking after yourself first.


  • JD says:

    Thanks for the reply. I understand what you’re getting at. That said, what’s your opinion on the concept of moving most storage external for typical consumers? I’ve been a Mac Mini user (lately the 2012 i7 quad core, the last of the fastest ones) and recently moved all my user files external on a USB3 mirrored RAID drive. One, because as an amateur photographer, I can’t fit all my large image files internal any more. Two, because I’d like to have an easier Mac upgrade path where I don’t have to move TB’s of data – just the core user profile and installed apps would need migration to a new Mac computer. The trash can Mac Pro was what inspired me to finally take the plunge with external storage. Do you feel it’s a flawed paradigm, or might not serve consumers well? Just curious to what extent your feelings are based on pro usage versus what spills into the consumer space…

    • Kerry Dawson says:

      Interesting. I can see the reasons for the method you’re using and don’t get me wrong; I think I meant for the article to focus on cost or bang for the buck. When you look at the Mac Pro you have a machine Apple is selling for a very high price with a very small hard drive at the entry level – 256 gig. There are problems that result from this as things like backup becomes very complex and you have to move so much to the external. I did this using symbolic links and these are not followed logically by backup programs. You end up with major problems, if you’re not on top of it. However, to have data in the external space is not intrinsically a problem but when core, critical data is – you have to be very careful. I want to get back to the question are you getting value for your money. I’d say absolutely not. In the case of the Mac Mini quite possibly you are. In the case of the Mac Pro you can do so much better dollar for dollar taking a different road. Everyone I believe, due to the genius the Apple’s marketing machine, is quite fooled by them in thinking that they are the greatest of the engineers. No. They’re good designers. The Mac Pro dances around very little and put against a workstation which really is where the likes of the machine falls it is poor at best but it is flashy, no doubt there. In computing we moved from the centralized to the decentralized but have been moving back to the centralized in significant magnitude. There are efficiency and technological reasons for that. But to answer your question more specifically around your Mac Mini I see no problem in what you’re doing one as I have the impression you know what you’re doing and it makes sense to me.

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