We recently had the pleasure of getting to know the new Mac Pro and Pro Display XDR over the last few months. We’ve had the opportunity to use it on a number of professional projects within the realms of computer animation.
Since we started the animation studio back in 2014, our entire pipeline has been based around the Mac. However, in recent years it’s been more challenging than we would have liked. With fewer and fewer hardware updates and the release of the trash can Mac Pro that seemed limited, things were certainly looking grim. We had many conversations about how we might eventually have to move over to use PCs. Fortunately in 2017, Apple announced the iMac Pro, which has been our main studio production machine for all artists. Now the new Mac Pro is here and we’ve been really excited to see how it’s going to evolve our studio.
The Mac Pro we received was a mid-tier model, which makes it great for testing.
• 3.2GHz 16‑core Intel Xeon W processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz
• 192GB (6x32GB) of DDR4 ECC memory
• Two Radeon Pro Vega II with 32GB of HBM2 memory each
• 4TB SSD storage
• Apple Afterburner card
We also received the new Pro Display XDR along with the Pro Stand.
The timing of receiving the machine couldn’t have been better as the studio was just about to begin work on the new Jumanji movie Jumanji: The Next Level. We were tasked to create the ‘Main on Ends’ (MOE) which is essentially the end animated credits for the movie…
We can safely say that the Mac Pro and Pro Display XDR levelled up (excuse the pun) what we could do within the timeframe we had on the Jumanji project.
MacDailyNews Take: As Lunar Animation writes: “The real game changer is the Pro Display XDR.” It’s a better display, that’s color accurate for far longer periods of time, at a price 1/6th or less than rivals. Check out the videos in the full article!
People simply need to look at the new Mac Pro in the perspective of who and what it is intended for, in which case the prices are more understandable. Unfortunately so many wanted a modular and upgradeable computer that was financially accessible to more of us.
From the start at Apple the idea was about what the computers could do, not the computers themselves, “bicycles for the mind”. Fetishizing the object as a tinker toy misses the point. More than half a dozen other Mac models are available in a myriad of configurations that will do virtually anything 99% of customers need it for. Lamenting the price of the new Mac Pro is just moving the goalposts, if it’s an issue it’s not for you, it checks every other box ever mentioned and more.