* Prices may differ from that shown
My primary jobs are music production and photography, and my hobbies include movie editing. Each of these roles requires a computer that's fast and reliable and has guts, along with all the pro software to support what I need it to do. I started off with an iMac 3 years ago and love the Mac life, I then soon moved over to purchasing the Mac Pro.
WHAT'S IN THE BOX?
The Mac Pro tower, minimal set of instructions which nobody ever bothers to read, keyboard, mouse & OS X 10.5 disks.
Connecting the silver, sleek, sexy beast upto your chosen monitor is very simple - choose one with a good resolution to enhance your Mac life experience. And when it's running it's a quiet as a mouse. I had previously considered purchasing a kit which would water cool it as I didn't want to have noisy fans running whilt I was recording vocals - however, I was assured that I wouldn't need to spend more cash on that particular feature and I was glad that I didn't. The keyboard that accompanies the Pro is ok, dust is hard to shift from it and the mouse took a month or so for me to get aquainted with
This machine is running Mac OS which I found easy to use, it's fast and you can move around with ease. You can of course run Windows OS is you so wish to but I can't see why you'd want to do this. Most of Apple upgrades are also free, or VERY cheap.
It practically comes with basic software applications that you need to get you started such as iPhoto, iMovie, iCal, Address Book, Mail etc. But installing purchased software is easy and is done by dragging a DMG file onto your desktop, it does the rest for you. The graphic capabilities on here are fab (so my husband tells me) however I've not tried this out as I'm not a gamer. I use Logic Pro for studio needs, Adobe for photo editing, Final Cut for movie editing and Word for wordprocessing - along with many other applications to get me through the day. Safari is a good webrowser but I prefer to use FireFox. Thankfully despite Apples issues with Flash, you can use Flash with this Mac pro, however you can't with iPods, iPhones and iPads.
The only dislike here is the price. All Apple products are well overpriced, I have no idea why this is so because the parts that are in it are identical to that of a normal PC. Also it's practically impossible to replace a part yourself. If a part fails you need to take it in to a specialist of Apple products.
If you can afford this beast BUY IT. I would never go back to using a PC again, I have Mac blood running through my veins!
I bought my Mac Pro with my student discount while at University, and believe me, that's simply the best way to buy it, as there is no way I could've afforded it otherwise. Now to break this down into sub-sections;
Looks-wise, its blocky and it takes up an inordinate amount of space. It doesn't match the modern sleek iMacs, but it doesn't have to, because its not designed to be pretty, its designed to work. Having said this, they've tried to give it some nice curves on the handles at the top, and it is in a sliver-y metal casing, so its not as if no effort has been put into the design.
Operating System (OS)
Well, this is going to change as thing progress and people upgrade, but I'm going to talk about the Mac OS which came with this machine. Firstly, its great that it came included and didn't take long to set-up with all the user details and permissions. I love the fact you don't have to pay for (most) of the Apple upgrades either, and they seem to keep on top of all the security updates, making the Mac OS nice and safe to work on - helped along of course, by the way you can set up rules and permissions through the System Preferences. The OS is pretty as well as functional, some key areas being the consistent rounded edges, 'silver' (grey) design, dock and very useful Finder. It also comes with a whole host of useful applications once you've set it all up; iMovie, Garageband, iPhoto, Safari etc.
Having got my student discount, I did upgrade the memory in the machine, so my specs are a little higher than the technical details listed on here, but I'm sure even without my extras, this machine is FAST. Blindingly so when you have a small amount of items on it (such as when you first get the computer). I've actually had to slow some of my games down for this machine, because otherwise they're so fast I miss the action! Its great for graphics heavy games such as Sims 2, and loading times are down to a couple of minutes, rather than the 15 I used to experience on my iMac. As for other applications, Word works quickly (but is not included with the OS), Safari is the best browser I've tried for speed of loading pages (although some sites don't bother making themselves compatible), the machine completes video rendering fairly quickly, but if you're going to be doing a lot of this, I'd suggest shelling out for a better equipped Mac unit, and video playback is excellent, even on big files.
It comes with both keyboard and mouse (Apple brand) which cuts down on costs of going out to find compatible ones, and it has two USB and two firewire ports at the front for quick access for your USB pens or camera's. The keyboard has a USB port for the mouse underneath, and the keyboard is really designed to be plugged in the back of the machine. To those I've heard complaining about the lack of ports (online and offline people), well all I can say is that you shouldn't really have lots of things plugged into USB ports anyway - think of the expense of electricity, the environment and most of all the danger of them getting too hot! USB items tend to overheat when left plugged in for too long.
It doesn't come with a monitor, so you're going to either have to shell out for an Apple monitor (and believe me these are priced exorbitantly) or find an alternative. The keyboard cable really doesn't stretch that far so if you want to sit away from your computer you might struggle a bit. As your hard drive fills up (and I mean really fills up so you're down to your last 50GB), you'll have to do more and more frequent check-ups with Disk Utility (included in the OS) on your permissions as it can get a bit clunky if you don't.
I use these computers at my university, very posh machines indeed. The spec on these machine is fantatsic and i feel priveledged not having enough money to buy one of these machines for myself.
Very stylish and sleek with the minimalist deisgn looks, Case is always cool, very quiet in operation and a nice sound quality that comes from them to, the keyboard is about half a centimetre thick and a little hard to get used to when all you've used is typical desktop keyboards but it is a minor worry.
However for the money I would've expected more USB ports on the front (only has 2) and also no memory card slots which is a bit dissapointing considering all the money these machines cost. They have a fantastic sized hard drive 4tb (I believe) and process every operation with ease
The Monitors that come with these are very flash and sleek, i do like the overall styling that apple put on all of their machines and they haven't failed to dissapoint with the looks of this one. mouse is a typical apple mouse i believe with a roller ball on top.
The computers we are using have two operating systems installed, Mac OS and Win XP, we have to use XP because we dont have logins for the MAC OS so don't know what thats like, but all in all, a very nice machine if a little overpriced.
Whether you're editing feature films or scoring them, composing symphonies or visualizing mass spectrometry analyses, Mac Pro makes it easier than ever to create your personal dream machine: A powerful system that not only meets your needs today but, thanks to an ingeniously designed enclosure, expands easily to meet tomorrow's challenges as well.