Hello! This is not an ordinary video because the computer we’ll be unboxing and reviewing in the following minutes is not an ordinary one. It’s the iMac Pro itself, a PC that’s been making waves since its announcement. It has arrived for testing at Zona IT and in the following minutes we’ll see what it’s capable of and what it can do. Moment of truth… We break the seal on the box. Smart thinking, you don’t need a cutter or any other tool to open. The power supply is inside the case, therefore this is all that’s tying the PC to the mains.There’s no brick, not many cables, very slim, simple, elegant. And now, we pull the unit out fully. It’s not very heavy. Ok, this is the computer as-is. You can see the seals. We’re unsealing it right now, it’s the first time being touched, not some fake unboxing, this is for real. So there may be all sorts of surprises. The display is foil-wrapped, also for protection. And here it is, for your pleasure, in all its glory. We won’t move the box away yet, as we still need to pull out the peripherals. Because yes, this PC features all peripherals inside the box. Basically, mouse, keyboard, does it have RGB? No, no RGB – no good, huh? Here – oops… This is the mouse, It too is also Space Gray. And let’s pull out the keyboard, which is full-size, including NumPad, Wireless, very slim, very elegant, as we’re used to with Apple.This is the keyboard I currently use for editing. It uses batteries, which you can replace. It looks like the new keyboard, the one used by iMac Pro, features integrated batteries. We can see a USB Type-C connector, through which this keyboard can also charge. Otherwise, it looks a little more refined than its predecesor, and about as light, though it’s definitely bigger, you can see the NumPad, when compared to my keyboard. The key travel is about the same. The keys feel the same, but it’s extremely beautiful and elegant, excellent for use on the go. I think this entire unboxing process, if you’re not on camera, and if you hurry up a little, can take you about a minute until first boot.I could say we’re done with the unboxing. Here, one last touch. Basically the entire setup lasts a couple of minutes after opening the box. This model came with High Sierra 10.13.2, obviously there’s an update available to 10.13.3. Let’s use the opportunity to update. If you need to use Windows, there’s two options. Either you dual-boot, or you use Parallels Desktop,
which works really well, and then you can have Windows 10 under Mac OS – or on top of Mac OS you can have Windows 10. It’s the first iMac that gives up the traditional silver that’s symbolic of this product line, the silver found on the laptops or the old keyboards. Including the peripherals, extremely elegant, as we mentioned, they’re Space Gray, and they connected easily, we just turned on the mouse and keyboard and they immediately connected to the iMac Pro.The entire machine is extremely slim, and very elegant. It’s very light and can be easily manipulated, and the display can be very easily tilted, but it won’t fall back from the position you set. Look, it’s enough to move it using one finger and it’ll stay in the position you set it. All the ports are on the back: Headphone or speaker jack, a card reader, high-speed SDXC, 4 USB ports, there they are, and another four Thunderbolt 3 ports, the ones that share the port form factor with USB Type-C. Only these are Thunderbolt, so they carry video as well as high-bandwidth data.Over here there’s Ethernet, which will also feature a surprise: this is 10-gigabit ethernet. So this is one of the first computers that features out-of-box 10Gigabit. Basically, this entire super-slim display, as we said earlier in the video, manages to fit in not just a power supply, which is pretty cool, but also speakers, – we’ll be testing those out later – which are really loud and capable. I like the way the connectivity is baked into this computer’s design, because it’s all seamless.How should I say it, there’s no friction, it’s not overly visible, though it has everything you might need. The 4 Thunderbolt ports are like water to a drowning man for the professionals that need to hook up 4 monitors, a NAS, external storage boxes or a daisy-chain or whatever, because the transfer rates are really good. Additionally, the 4 classic full-sized USB ports are welcome because USB is still being heavily used. There’s the headphones and the ethernet is almost like a trademark of this machine. Yes, that Ethernet port also supports the standard Gigabit we’re used to but it future-proofs the device because when the moment comes that we can use 10-Gigabit, this machine is ready.As for the base configuration, There’s a 3.2GHz Xeon W with turbo up to 4.2GHz, featuring 8 physical cores. The configuration options of iMac Pro are: 8, 10, 14 or 18 physical cores. Of course,
as the number of cores goes up, frequency goes down. So we start from an 8-core, 3.2GHz base option, then a 10-core, 3GHz base clock followed by a 14-core option running at 2.5GHz if I’m not mistaken. Then 18 cores running at 2.3GHz base clock.It’s very application-dependent – oh, looks like it’s done installing… Application use is very important. Some need the highest possible clock rate, like editing in Premiere or in Final Cut Pro, 8 cores can be more then enough. What matter is The high clock-rate. But if you run multicore-intensive applications like those for 3D graphics work, then fourteen or eighteen cores can make a difference. Or, in cases like Adobe After Effects. We mention these programs because basically, the iMac Pro is a tool made for professionals. Pretty much those working in creative fields: Photo editing, Video editing and production, 3D graphics…This is not a PC for everyone, and we prepared a bit of side-by-side comparison before this unboxing and review, with the top iMac configurations and we found some interesting data. Practically, if you want, right now, to configure a new comparable iMac, or well, the strongest available iMac, you can get a 4.2Ghz quad-core i7 CPU. So, in terms of processing power, that’s all you can get in an iMac right now, which is what Apple features on their website. Well. So the iMac Pro base model starts at 8 cores, which is double that. Let’s also check the memory options. The option we’re testing now features 32GB of DDR4 memory, clocked at 2666MHz. But – this computer supports up to 128GB. I think 32GB is plenty for most people and most tasks that are likely to be ran on this machine. Going a bit further, the storage features a 1TB SSD. So Apple, at least as far as these professional offerings have renounced the use of SSHD’s which we could find in iMacs some time ago.So a 1TB SSD, which is plenty of storage space. Additionally, you can always use one of those Thunderbolts to extend the storage capacity using an external storage device. Now, we move ahead to what’s probably most interesting: There’s a Graphics Processing Unit, something special – a Vega Pro 56. Looks like the relationship between Apple and AMD is alive and well, because AMD have powered and are powering pretty much all of Apple’s PC’s, whether laptops or desktop machines. So what’s different between Vega Pro 56 and the regular Vega 56 that you can find – well, that you
can’t really find in shops? The differences are pretty small – a smaller TDP, by about 15%. And about 10% more power, at least in theory.But these are differences which i don’t think most users can notice. But beyond the hardware, the technical specs and the party under the hood, what really draws in your attention first and foremost about this computer is the amazing and absolutely gorgeous display. This is a 5K monitor, so we’re looking at a display featuring 5120 x 2880 pixels. Plenty of screen real-estate, 10-bit DCIP3. I think this is really a treat, especially if you’re coming across this machine as a professional for video or photo editing work.The hardware is strong enough to back it up and the working area is very big to suit almost any application. Of course, if you need more you can always use your Thunderbolt ports to hook up more screens. After a few minutes searching YouTube I managed to find an 8K video, pretty much 4320p, Anyway, I think this is shot over a Red Dragon, the frames are stitched side-by-side but this is the result. Ok… So because the screen is 5K we can’t really view native 8K video but the colors are absolutely stunning and the machine can play back the clip with no issues whatsoever.It’s true we’re looking at YouTube compression. Still, the clip is smooth and the image on this 10-bit DCIP3 monitor looks absolutely sensational. As for the sound. Really strong for a form-factor this slim. I can’t say much about the fidelity and sound quality but as for volume, it’s definitely loud. Doesn’t feel like small, integrated speakers and the sound is strong and resonant enough to fill up the whole room. I can’t say much about the sound quality, the depth or the bass. However, if you’re going to kick up an after-work party the speakers featured by this display are more than enough. Check’em: Yes, I’m sure you can build a PC configuration that’s more powerful and maybe cheaper but iMac Pro has a lot going for it.That it’s slim, Plug’n’Play, that it’s absolutely gorgeous and well-built, well-finished. That it’s a really powerful machine in a small and elegant form-factor. These are the advantages of the iMac Pro. The base configuration, sitting on my table is listed on Apple’s website for $5,000. So this is the starting price of the iMac Pro and right now it’s available in Romania through the iStyle store. This exact machine retails for about 26,000 RON. We want to
thank the folk at iStyle who had the guts to send it over for testing. No, this isn’t a cheap or accessible computer, on the contrary, and we handled it with the greatest possible care. We’ll start with synthetic tests and the first is Cinebench. We’ll check the CPU first. Yeah? Ok. Those that work in creative fields and require lots of computing resources and brute processing power, favored the Mac Pro workstations, and Apple have announced that they will not ignore these people and will soon – maybe even this year – launch a new Mac Pro.Until then we can call the iMac Pro either an intermediary step, or one of Apple’s more interesting bets. I’ve seen a lot of professionals, photographers, video editors, graphic designers, using iMacs! So Apple though that, at least for studios focused on photo or video work, an iMac on steroids might be the appropriate solution. And voila – it’s on the market. The results are in: We’ve 1677 points on this Xeon W 2140B. With this occasion we found out what the identifier of this Xeon is. About 2.5 times faster than an i7-4770K. So, a pretty powerful CPU of the professional range. Let’s also check GPU performance. So, in the OpenGL tests we score 124,97 frames per second. We expected it to be close to a regular Vega 56 which scored a little over 123 fps. So as I mentioned near the beginning of this video. The differences are really small. Betwen Vega 56 and Vega Pro 56 the TDP is a little better on the Vega Pro and it’s clocked a little higher, but in real-life, which is to say, in tests, we’re looking at single-percentage differences.For our next test, we’ll compare against the top Mac Pro of the second-to-last generation, the last configurable Mac Pro. Over here we’re looking at a dual-CPU beast, each CPU featuring 6 physical cores, clocked in at 3.46GHz each. So 12 physical cores total, and 24 concurrent threads. This computer is also boasting a Titan X with 12 GB of VRAM and 32GB of memory. The project we prepared for the test, it’s over here, and we’ll use this to compare against the iMac Pro. This is an Adobe Premiere project, specifically Premiere CC 2018. We took a 4K video file weighing in at 1,27GB at a 100-mbps bit-rate, with a video length of 1:46, so a minute and 46 seconds. On top of that we applied a lumetri color effect, a creative filter, Kodak, if you’re interested, and on top of that, two adjustment layers. On the first adjustment layer there’s a
lux, from the Magic Bullet plugin, and on top of that, another layer, over which we put a grid, and on top of everything, a gaussian blur, which should theoretically bring pretty much any desktop PC to heel.You can see that when we click Play, it seriously stutters. Actually, it seems to have stopped. Good. Let’s see how long it takes to render this sequence, after which we’ll take the same and render it on the iMac Pro. We’ll export this file as a YouTube, H264, YouTube 2160p, no other settings are modified. To make absolutely sure that Premiere’s time estimate won’t trick us, we’ll prepare a chronometer. So, let’s trigger both at once. Export, start. Good. The clock’s ticking. Alright, a few seconds left, we’ll stop the clock as soon as it’s done buffering and the render window disappears off the screen. Right now it says that the render is 100% complete but I’m not stopping the clock until I can see that file completely rendered. So we’ll wait a little longer. The clock passed – oh, it’s done. Perfect. 25 minutes, and 7 seconds. Ok, this is the file we just exported, it’s smooth, great. We can see the applied color effects, the gaussian blur and that grid we laid on top of the whole image. I copied the project file over to the iMac Pro.Made sure to install any missing plugins, and obviously, Premiere CC 2018. The time to beat is 25 minutes and 7 seconds and when we press the export button we’ll start the clock. They’re off! Here, you can see. Now there are a few seconds until it’s done. I mentioned we’ll only stop the clock on the render window disappears completely, including the buffer. It says 100% but I can see it’s still showing the render window on-screen. Ok, done. 14 minutes, and 39 seconds, versus 25 minutes and 7 seconds. A quick back-of-the-brain calculation, and we can see the iMac Pro is almost twice as fast which is absolutely fabulous. So basically a single Xeon W against a pair of Xeon 5690’s, 8 physical cores against twelve physical cores. And a GPU featuring 8GB VRAM against a previous top-class GPU featuring 12GB VRAM, though it’s true that Titan X is now a bit dated.Still, the difference is huge. And we have another surprise for you, right now. Because right as I speak we’re rendering the same project, the same sequence, because we’re so stunned by the iMac Pro, we’re rendering on a Threadripper machine featuring 16 cores and 32 threads. It is the fastest machine we have
access to in the studio. The result is mind-blowing, we did not expect this. This is the iMac Pro… 14 minutes : 39 seconds and this is Threadripper: 28m:23s And in-between, the top 2012 Mac Pro, with a 25m:07s lap, which can give the Threadripper a run for its money. If you’re a video editor and on the fence about the iMac Pro this test will show that yes, it’s really, really fast. As I said before, I’m convinced that applications using lots of cores properly, like AfterEffects or 3D modeling apps, will show the core count making a large difference, and then this iMac Pro specifically would not win or at least not by such huge margin.This was the new iMac Pro, the first of his name, Late 2017, as Apple calls it. It’s a strong, elegant machine dedicated to professional clients and in this market there’s no ‘cheap’ or ‘expensive’, there’s only return-on-investment. Don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel and press the notification button if you want to stay up to date which our new videos.And speaking of, every evening at 6PM (UTC+2) you can find a new video whether it’s about hardware or about gaming. Thank you, and we’ll see you next time in the next review. Until then, we wish you well. .