Updated discussions include the following topics:
Akitio Node Titan is a Thunderbolt 3 expansion box from OWC (MacSales.com) that accomodates graphics cards for eGPU (external GPU) configurations, as well as other types of PCIe cards. Features include a single Thunderbolt 3 port, space for double-wide, full-length, full-height PCIe cards, PCIe x4 bandwidth (x16 mechanical), a 650W power supply (with 85W notebook charging and dual 8-pin auxilliary power connectors), a retractable carrying handle, toolless (thumb-screw) setup, and a temperature-controlled fan.
Akitio Node Titan is priced at $334.75 sans PCIe card, $549.99 with a Radeon RX 580, or $749.99 with a Radeon RX 5700 XT. It works with Thunderbolt 3-equipped Macs running macOS 10.13 and later with compatible cards or with Windows systems (which are compatible with Nvidia cards not supported by Apple).
Linux discussion includes Chromebook conversion issues, better alternatives (new and used), issues with a new Dell Inspiron, and Linux workarounds with MacBook Pro graphics failures.
MacInTouch Community updates also discuss the following topics (among others):
- 2019 Mac Pro – weak graphics (and gaming) vs. iGPUs
- Adobe/alternatives – font issues, Affinity Publisher IDML import
- Audio – Sonos “recycling” issues, sandboxing
- Apple Messages – sync follies and confusion
- Competition – Intel NUC 9 Extreme (“Ghost Canyon”)
- Input devices – great, old Contour Mouse, alternatives
- iPhones – battery charge indicator bugs
- macOS Catalina – Dymo software, Finder-related problems
- Photography – SmugMug, hosting alternatives/issues
- Tax software – macOS version compatibility confusions
- Thunderbolt – Bluetooth interference with long Thunderbolt cable
MacInTouch Community discussions include the following current topics, among others:
- 2019 Mac Pro – rack version, performance tests, PCIe cards vs. Apple SSD
- Apple TV – personal information confusion
- Input devices – iPhone/iPad in lieu of mouse?
- iOS 13 – battery drain, quality issues
- macOS Catalina – bad Apple Books, virtualization, dead Dymo
- Mapping – slow iPhone GPS failures
- Old systems – Adam Rosen’s Mac museum moves
- Products – all-in-one printer/scanner recommendations
- Phone services – voice mail transcriptions, MagicJack, WiFi calling, etc.
- Quicken – Raymond James Financial connectivity restored
- Security – Apple/Adobe abandonment (Acrobat/Reader, Preview)
- Storage – Fusion drive APFS performance, alternatives
- Tax software – TurboTax on fusion drives
- Troubleshooting – Thunderbolt/panics with Catalina/sleep
- Virtualization – multi-user performance issues
- Web browsers – memory usage
2019 Mac Pro discussion continues on storage issues, Thunderbolt controllers and display support, motherboard (and liquid cooling) costs, halo effects, configuration costs and PC competition, Xeon W vs. SP (single vs. dual CPU) price models, and a happy teardown.
Virtualization notes talk about using virtual machines (VMs/VMDK) across multiple host environments over extended periods and also offer a procedure for booting a virtual machine off a real hard drive (“raw” disk).
MacInTouch Community discussions also include the following current topics, among others:
- Apple Card – no iPhone installments?
- Apple product issues – missing middle Macs; ARM-based future?
- Apple quality – iPhone screen scratches, coatings and protectors
- Displays – Apple Pro Display XDR issues
- File systems – APFS versions, tool issues; FUSE
- iMacs – RAM upgrades, GPU options
- iPhones – wireless charging vs. cases
- Mac malware – “no known viruses for Macs” claim
- macOS Catalina – QuickTime 7 loss, virtualization; VueScan and ExactScan
- Migration – High Sierra, APFS and performance issues
- Networking – SMB, Apple bugs, performance issues
- Old systems – past Macs, performance, Atari hackintosh
- Raspberry Pi – fun projects and tips
- Tax software – update and phone-home issues
- Thunderbolt – iPhone-caused disconnects
- Time Machine – files list utility?
2019 Mac Pro notes talk about storage upgrade issues, historical price comparisons, Thunderbolt video compatibility and bandwidth, 2013 Mac Pro obsolescence/support, Windows PC comparisons, tech support for $50K+ customers, Apple wheels, iFixit fun, component costs and other pricing/design factors, cheap RAM, an impressive Ryzenshine AMD-based hackintosh, road-robust design, the halo effect, and more.
Virtualization discussion looks at 32-bit support within macOS Catalina; issues with cloning/importing/booting disk volumes; standard VM formats; compatibility and update concerns; Parallels vs. VMware; archive formats; performance experiences; VirtualBox extension licenses; and more.
MacInTouch Community discussions also include the following topics, among others:
- Adobe/alternatives – Affinity excitement; IDMarkz InDesign conversions
- Antivirus software – suggestions for mom; Avast and F-Secure
- Apple quality – iPhone/iPad scratches, cases
- Apple security – hidden processes; silent updates/changes; parental control bypass bug
- Audio – 64-bit apps for pop and click cleanup
- Displays – BenQ EW3270U, Pro Display XDR compatibility, dual-panel (LMCL) technology, ProArt PA32UCX
- File systems – APFS version confusion, detective work
- iMacs – $1399 iMac 5K; RAM upgrades
- iOS 13 – “bugs galore”, UI problems, update issues, file servers optimized charging
- Mac Mini – OWC SSD upgrade confusion
- MacBook Pro – 16-inch audio bug partial patch?
- macOS Catalina – VueScan, QuickTime, 16-inch MacBook Pro and Mojave, dictation deprecation
- Malware – malicious ads inject malware into iPhones from mainstream websites…
- Migration – macOS choices for older Macs
- Networking – AFP vs NFS vs SMB Performance
- Old systems – publishers and preservation; Fortran; old Mac speed; Copland
- Scams – snail mail and phone scams, and related advice
- Security – Ring device invasions, etc.
- Tax software – privacy/security issues and options
- Thunderbolt – cellphone-triggered disconnects; OWC dock
ThunderBay 4 Mini is a multi-drive storage system from Other World Computing Inc. (macsales.com) that connects to a computer via Thunderbolt — both Thunderbolt 3 models and Thunderbolt 2 models (compatible with Thunderbolt 1) are available.
Features include four 2.5″ drive bays with slide-in trays (for 6Gbps SATA SSDs or hard drives), dual Thunderbolt ports, a compact aluminum enclosure with “32.5dB cooling fan”, and SoftRAID software for combining drives in a variety of RAID configurations for improved performance and reliability (although SoftRAID is not currently compatible with FileVault 2 encryption or Fusion drive configurations).
ThunderBay 4 Mini is priced from $299.99 as a bare enclosure with SoftRAID Lite to $2,069.99 with four 2TB SSDs and the full SoftRAID XT software version, for macOS 10.13 and later.
SSD (Solid State Drives) are a hot topic with much confusion about USB vs. Thunderbolt, related compatibility issues and performance, plus unexpected Thunderbolt disconnects, the demise of a company providing unique Apple SSD replacement parts, potential Fusion drive failure, and more.
Adobe/alternatives discussion talks about Affinity performance optimizations and scripting issues; IDMarkz/InDesign file conversion, Pagemaker/Quark history, etc.
MacInTouch Community discussions include the following topics, as well:
- Apple quality – 16-inch MacBook Pro bugs, other problems
- Email – spam filtering problems
- iOS 13 – bugs, other experiences, bad UI
- Linux – iOS connections; distro quality; security question
- macOS Catalina – keychain corruption mess
- Old systems – compilers, hard drives, nuclear simulator and more
- Passwords/Authentication – Google Titan Security Key?
- Raspberry Pi – do-it-yourself fun and firewalls
- Security – VLANs and “micro segmentation”, solar systems, home automation, iOT
- Thunderbolt – OWC dock failure, wake from sleep issues
- Utilities – Witch