The new Mac Pro isn’t being released until later this year, but it’s already turning heads. While the new cylindrical design is enough to interest anyone who comes across a picture of it, what’s under the hood may be even more impressive. Take a look at some of the Mac Pro features you can look forward to this December:
The Body Redefined
The first thing to notice is that Apple has forsaken the traditional box shape of the classic workstation in favor of an entirely new — and much more compact — cylindrical design. The machine was designed using one large fan as the focal point and introducing smart technology that will actively redistribute cooling power; all the vital components, such as graphics cards and processors, can now be placed around the fan instead of on top of each other as they are in most workstations. This has resulted in the creation of an ultra-powerful computer tower that measures only 9.9 inches tall and 6.6 inches wide.
The new Mac Pro is outfitted with a new-generation Intel Xeon E5 chipset and can be configured with up to 12 cores total. What that means is that the speed of the 2013 Mac Pro is roughly twice as fast as the current model, and that’s while still being only a quarter of the size. The memory bandwidth of the machine (the speed and efficiency with which the machine runs programs) is also twice as fast as that of the current Mac Pro, so this computer won’t get bogged down when trying to run five to ten different programs at once.
As for graphics, Apple has gone above and beyond. The computer is equipped with two AMD FirePro workstation-class GPUs, each of which holds up to 6GB of VRAM. To put this into perspective, the GPU performance of the current Mac Pro tops out at 2.7 teraflops, while the new model can hit 7 teraflops. For gamers, this means running any game flawlessly; for video editors, it means being able to simultaneously edit 4K video and render effects in the background while still having the juice to connect to three high-res displays. For everyone else, it just means more potential than they’ll know what to do with.
Hyper Hard Drive
Most computers these days come standard with a hard drive that works at 7200 RPM, which can read files at about 125MB per second on a good day. SATA solid-state drives can work at about quadruple the speed of a standard 7200 RPM hard drive, but Apple goes even further with the new Mac Pro. With the integration of PCIe Flash Storage, the new Mac Pro can read and process files at a speed of up to ten times that of the standard 7200 RPM hard drive; it can hit speeds of up to 1250MB per second, so that booting up and launching programs will happen within the blink of an eye.
Fanning the Flames
The fan, which has been painstakingly designed by Apple, has to work differently given the unorthodox structure of the computer. Instead of pulling air in and circulating it to each of the different components before pushing it out, the new Mac Pro does all of this in one fluid motion. The single fan, situated on top of the tower, sucks air in through the bottom, cooling the machine on its way out through the top. Apple also states that the fan is one of the quietest stock fans on the market.
Located on the back of the tower are the ports for the computer, and there are many. Thunderbolt 2, which can transfer data at speeds of up to 20GB per second, has six ports, each of which can support port modifiers that add up to five ports each. This means that if someone really needed to and had the equipment, up to 36 devices could be attached through the Thunderbolt 2 ports alone. When combined with the HDMI 1.4 port, four USB 3 ports, and two Gigabit Ethernet ports, it adds quite a bit to the already impressive list of Mac Pro features. The computer will also be outfitted with Bluetooth 4.0 as well as three-stream 802.11ac WiFi for any and all wireless demands.
Good things do come in small packages, which is something avid Mac fans will discover once the new Mac Pro hits the shelves. According to International Business Times, it has been announced that the new Mac Pro will be available in stores sometime in December 2013, but it will tote a $2,999 price tag. Apple has always been a trendsetter when it comes to styling computers, and with the new design and a veritable arsenal of computing power, the Mac Pro is sure to amaze. But are all of these new Mac Pro features worth the price?
Image courtesy of Wired