Mac Pro Overview Updated October 10, 2019

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229 'Mac Pro' stories

January 2011 - October 2019


After letting the Mac Pro become stagnant since 2013, Apple has finally unveiled the new version. In early 2017, Apple made a handful of announcements regarding the product. The company explained that it is rethinking its Mac Pro approach and plans to unveil a new modular model sometime in the future.

The company admitted that its 2013 model approach hasn’t been as upgradable in practice as it had hoped.

At some point [Apple] came to the conclusion that the 2013 Mac Pro concept was fundamentally flawed. It was tightly integrated internally, which allowed for some very nice features: it was small and beautiful (a pro machine that demanded placement on your desk, not under your desk) and it could run whisper quietly. But that tight integration made it hard to update regularly. The idea that expansion could be handled almost entirely by external Thunderbolt peripherals sounded good on paper, but hasn’t panned out in practice. And the GPU design was a bad prediction. Apple bet on a dual-GPU design (multiple smaller GPUs, with “pro”-level performance coming from parallel processing) but the industry has gone entirely in the other direction (machines with one big GPU).

Phil Schiller acknowledged that the 2013 Mac Pro had not been well received by many pros, and it was this that had led to the radical rethink.

With regards to the Mac Pro, we are in the process of what we call “completely rethinking the Mac Pro”. We’re working on it. We have a team working hard on it right now, and we want to architect it so that we can keep it fresh with regular improvements, and we’re committed to making it our highest-end, high-throughput desktop system, designed for our demanding pro customers.

As part of doing a new Mac Pro — it is, by definition, a modular system — we will be doing a pro display as well. Now you won’t see any of those products this year; we’re in the process of that. We think it’s really important to create something great for our pro customers who want a Mac Pro modular system, and that’ll take longer than this year to do.

In the interim, we know there are a number of customers who continue to buy our [current Mac Pros]. To be clear, our current Mac Pro has met the needs of some of our customers, and we know clearly not all of our customers. None of this is black and white, it’s a wide variety of customers. Some… it’s the kind of system they wanted; others, it was not.

In the meantime, we’re going to update the configs to make it faster and better for their dollar. This is not a new model, not a new design, we’re just going to update the configs. We’re doing that this week. We can give you the specifics on that.

The CPUs, we’re moving them down the line. The GPUs, down the line, to get more performance per dollar for customers who DO need to continue to buy them on the interim until we get to a newly architected system.

At WWDC 2019 Apple offered the first look at its new Mac Pro. The new version is a return of the cheese grater design from a generation previous.

Apple says the new Mac Pro was designed with easy access to its components. There are stainless steel handles for modularity, all internal components mount to the frame with 360-degree components.

Mac Pro Specs

  • 300 watts of power, runs fully unconstrained
  • 2933MHz ECC memory, 12 DIMM slots
  • 8 internal PCI slots, four double-wide slots, three single side slots
  • Half-length slot populated with two TB3 ports, audio jack, two USB A ports, two 10Gb Ethernet ports
  • Up to 1.5 terabytes of RAM
  • Intel Xeon processor with up to 28 cores
  • Apple designed a PCI connector with a second PCIe connector and power
  • Multiple graphics options; can configure with options such as Radeon Pro Vega II
  • Two GPUs connected via Infinity Fabric Link, 5X faster than PCI bust
  • Apple built a brand new card called Afterburner for video editing, 6 billion pixels per second. 3 streams of 8K, 12 streams of 4K

Mac Pro Pricing

The new Mac Pro starts at $5999 for 8-core, 32GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD.

Mac Pro Release Date

Rumors point to a September release for the new Mac Pro, but Apple’s official answer is Fall of 2019.

Mac Pro Stories October 10

The Dune Pro PC case aims to bring the new Mac Pro’s design to everyone

Apple’s all-new Mac Pro is slated to be released sometime this fall, but a new Kickstarter product aims to bring the Mac Pro design to the masses. PC casemaker Dune has introduced a new Dune Pro PC case that bares a striking resemblance to the new Mac Pro.

Mac Pro Stories September 30

Earlier this month, Apple announced that the new 2019 Mac Pro will be made in the United States after some uncertainty over tariffs. Bloomberg reports today, however, that despite this commitment, the US Trade Representative’s office has denied Apple’s request for tariff exemption on certain components made in China.

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Mac Pro Stories September 24

Update 2: It appears that this problem was created by a Google software updater.

Update: Avid has confirmed the issue and issued a brief statement. A report suggests it could be a Chrome issue as well. 

Avid is aware of the reboot issue affecting Apple Mac Pro devices running some Avid products, which arose late yesterday. This issue is top priority for our engineering and support teams, who have been working diligently to determine and resolve the root cause. As we learn more, we will immediately publish information—directly to our customers and via our community forums and social media platforms—in order to resolve this issue for all affected customers and prevent any further issues.

Hollywood filmmakers, editors, and post-production companies are reporting “a massive failure” of large numbers of Mac Pro machines running Avid Media Composer, an app popular in the movie industry.

Reports say that machines are failing to reboot…

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Mac Pro Stories September 23

Apple’s tremendously capable new Mac Pro has been in the headlines all summer, but not just for its raw power and modularity. Instead, the attention has focused on something much less fascinating: tariffs.

Will it be assembled in the US like the 2013 model it replaces? Will it cost Apple more to build it in China and import it to the United States? Might it be exempt from President Trump’s China tariffs? After a whirlwind of reporting all summer, we believe we finally have a definitive answer.

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Mac Pro Stories September 20

Earlier this summer, Apple formally asked the Trump administration for tariff exemptions for its new Mac Pro and some accessories. Trump responded in a tweet that Apple would not be given waivers for Mac Pro parts and said “Make them in the USA, no Tariffs!” Despite those words, a new report says that Apple has been given tariff exemption approval for 10 of its recent requests for Mac Pro components and some of the company’s accessories.

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Mac Pro Stories September 4

It’s unlikely that too many pros with the budget to invest in the upcoming Mac Pro will be looking for an Apple Pro Display XDR alternative, but for any that are, Asus thinks it has an interesting option.

The Asus ProArt PA32UCG specs put it into close competition with Apple’s professional monitor, not matching the forthcoming XDR on resolution but beating it on refresh rate…

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