Is the Blender Foundation considering discontinuing producing Blender for OS X?

Pencilandinc Posts: 140 Enthusiast
edited May 2015 in Practical Filmmaking

From the Blender Development Notes on May 3, 2015:

"Our very active OS X platform maintainer for many years, Jens Verwiebe - had a suprising statement. He's going to abandon OS X as a serious 3D/graphics development platform. This, he said, because of lack of quality GPU support (OpenGL, OpenCL) and annoying Yosemite glitches. It makes this platform too painful to keep using seriously. Jens will stay around for at least the 2.75 release. Martijn Berger volunteered to take over duties."

The original post is here:

IMHO, although they say that they have another maintainer stepping in, the phrasing alone does not fill me with a whole lot of confidence that Blender will be around long-term on the Mac. I COULD be wrong and hope that I am.

First, the possibility that Modo might go to Ad*b*/A*t*d*sk, and now this...good thing I've still got an old copy of Lightwave.


  • DreamArchitect
    DreamArchitect Posts: 597 Enthusiast

    This reads as the opinion of just the guy in question to me. I'm not sure why you think it reads as the death of blender for the Mac. I'm not a Mac user myself but I see nothing in this that would have me fearing for blender on the Mac. It's just someone for whom working on blender has run its course. Time for someone new to take the reigns.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,070 Ambassador

    It's probably the fact that the departing OSX coder talked about it being "too painful" to work on Mac because of lack of "quality support" and "Yosemite glitches." The departing guy certainly gave the Mac a huge middle-finger up right there.

    However, the fact that the Blender Foundation has a new OSX guy certainly indicates that they intend to continue with Mac for a time. :-)

  • mark_e
    mark_e Posts: 190 Just Starting Out

    Ton posted on twitter his about it here, teaming up with LuxRender in an open letter to Apple about the situation.

  • Pencilandinc
    Pencilandinc Posts: 140 Enthusiast

    Yes, once I saw the open letter to Tim Cook, it made it a little easier to breathe again. With all the shenanigans going on in the graphics /3D/video industry these days, you never can tell. Figured I was in the minority of blenderheads who use blender on the Mac.

  • SimonKJones
    SimonKJones Posts: 4,448 Enthusiast

    Aaah, Yosemite. We've had so much fun with that over the last couple of months.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,070 Ambassador
    edited May 2015

    I have been a PC guy because Sony Vegas, and, of course, I have been told for years and years and years how Mac is soooooooo much better for video, and Macs are stable, and Macs work and "pros use Mac..." 

    Yet, since the bad joke that was the initial release of FCPX (FCPX editors, feel free to love your NLE of choice. The final product is more important than the tools used to create it--but the initial release was broken.) and Apple discontinuing high-end audio software like Cubase in favor of Garageband, I have become increasingly convinced that Apple is slowly preparing to abandon the Mac market in favor of iProduct. 

    Seeing this Blender post, and following up in other forums convinces me I am right--let's face it, last year Apple hit it's highest ever market share for PC's--a mighty 6% of global market share, about 12% of US share--which is pathetic--unlike the tablet and smartphone markets, where Apple has about 45% share on higher profit-margin gear (Apple's watch costs $80 to make and ship and sells for $350.). Add in some public feuding between Adobe and Apple (Apple single-handedly killed Adobe Flash), when it was pretty much Adobe products keeping Macs in use for 15 years, and I really don't think Apple cares about Mac anymore. 

    I prefer to be totally wrong in this. 


  • SimonKJones
    SimonKJones Posts: 4,448 Enthusiast

    I think one area where you're a bit wrong is in thinking of FCPX as 'broken' on release. As I understand, it became their biggest selling video product very quickly. I think it was exactly what they wanted it to be on release. It just wasn't what the professional users of FCP7 wanted it to be.

    But to think of it as a 'mistake' by Apple is to miss the point: they decided on a new direction and went for it, as they tend to do. They knew which audience was most important to them (Adobe going subscription-only is a similar declaration of intent, albeit in a different direction).

    What's really changed in the last 5-10 years is that video editing is no longer primarily a professional occupation. It's more mainstream now than it has ever been. Go back 30 years and the only people editing film or video were professionals. It wasn't something that could be done casually. These days, the majority of editors are very different, producing YouTube content and working with stuff off their phones and DSLRs. The weighting is all shifting about.

    I'm not making a judgement on whether any of this is a good or a bad thing, by the way - I'm just observing and musing. :)

  • aarondc
    aarondc Posts: 264

    Interesting thought process, Triem.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,070 Ambassador
    edited May 2015

    Oh, well, as long as we're musing, that changing market is another potential reason for Apple to think about phasing out the Mac. 

    Heck, we've had users on here wanting Surface and iPad Hitfilm, and a tablet has the horsepower of a 2004 desktop, and I have done features on that level of hardware. 64-bit mobile OS's make it possible for tablet makers to put in 4, 8, 16GB of RAM. And there are already basic video-editing mobile apps. Apple can sell 100,000 units of Final Cut, or 5 million units of iNal Cut. 

    Oh, Simon, while Apple may have intended FCPX to be what it was at launch, a lot of the pros who made FCP successful were alienated by the initial release lacking Compressor (so you needed to stay on 7 to SCALE FOOTAGE) or legacy support (screw you TV people who might need assets that have assets that weren't on memory cards!). Those modules were released six months later, and it took until Feb 2015--almost five years!--for them to add frickin' Curves! 

    University of La Verne, where I freelance, moved from FCP to Premiere at that time: 250 licenses. Andrew Kramer and Ryan Conelly switched to Premiere about then (Look up Film Riot's initial review if FCPX--in short, there are six escalating suicide gags.).

    So, the initial release was absolutely broken from the standpoint of the working professional using "Final Cut PRO X."

    But, to return to your valid point about a changing market, FCPX was great for DSLR shooters--after they released all the missing bits that should have been out on day one. 

    I still wouldn't be surprised to see the Mac discontinued within a decade. 

  • __simon__
    __simon__ Posts: 113 Just Starting Out

    You need a Mac to develop iOS apps which is probably what's helped them get more market share

  • SimonKJones
    SimonKJones Posts: 4,448 Enthusiast

    Those pro editors were definitely alienated, @Triem23, but my core point is that I suspect Apple didn't really care. It wasn't an accident or a mistake.  Adding in that stuff later made sense, but was never a priority.

    As for taking a while to add Curves, I probably shouldn't comment. Glass houses and all that. ;)

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,070 Ambassador

    Simon I think we're in agreement that Apple didn't care. ;-) That supposition agrees with my own speculation about Apple not caring about Mac in general AND your correct noting of how desktop video changed in the last decade. :-)

    I shouldn't bring up Curves because I still owe coffee. ;-)