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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. If you include all of the upgrade options, it can reach a $50,000 price point.

Mac Pro Release Date

The Mac Pro was released in December of 2019.

Most older Mac Pro users should switch to Mac Studio – Macworld

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Most of those using a 2019 Mac Pro should switch to the Mac Studio, rather than the 2023 Mac Pro, argues Macworld videographer and gamer Thiago Trevisan.

He argues that there’s only one reason to choose the current Mac Pro over the much more compact Mac Studio, despite the fact that the 2019 model was “the best workstation [he has] ever owned” …

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Here are the things you can plug into the 2023 Mac Pro PCI card slots

2023 Mac Pro PCI card slots

We last week highlighted the four differences between the 2023 Mac Pro and 2023 Mac Studio – with the Mac Pro PCI card slots as the most significant of these. We also talked about what you can’t plug into these slots. Apple has confirmed this, and listed the cards you can use.

Of the seven slots, one is occupied by the Apple I/O card – though you can remove this if you don’t need any of the five ports this provides …

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2023 Mac Pro is a ‘product of Thailand’ – likely a change forced on Apple

2023 Mac Pro

Back in 2019, Apple responded to Trump’s tariff threats by agreeing to make the Mac Pro in the US – proudly bearing a Designed by Apple in California, Assembled in USA label. The 2023 Mac Pro, however, has different wording.

The label instead now reads Designed by Apple in California. Product of Thailand. Final assembly in the USA

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The Apple Silicon Mac Pro is here, but it still can’t replace my custom PC

Ian's desk setup with custom rendering PC

The Apple Silicon Mac Pro is here, but it still won’t replace my custom-built PC for 3D rendering and graphics work at 9to5Mac.

Apple has finally revealed their long-awaited Apple Silicon Mac Pro, and I won’t be buying one. With early rumors of an “M2 Extreme,” with double the computing power of the M2 Ultra, I was very excited about the Mac Pro and hoped it could finally replace my custom-built PC I use for 3D graphics at 9to5Mac.

Unfortunately, Apple stuck with the same M2 Ultra SOC from the Mac Studio, and besides adding PCI-E expandability, the computers are nearly identical. 

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2023 Mac Pro versus 2023 Mac Studio? Ports, PCI cards, vents, and wheels

2023 Mac Pro versus 2023 Mac Studio

Back at the beginning of the year, I questioned whether the 2023 Mac Pro would be dead on arrival – since it seemed Apple would have enormous difficulty in distinguishing it from other Macs powered by the same chips.

Apple has of course now announced the new Mac Pro, and while it does offer a handful of benefits the updated Mac Studio launched alongside it, very few people are going to buy one …

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It’s been over 400 days since Apple SVP John Ternus said ‘Mac Pro’ is ‘for another day’

Turns out John Ternus wasn’t kidding when he said “that leaves just one more product to go: Mac Pro, but that’s for another day”. Ternus, Apple’s senior vice president of hardware engineering, had just unveiled the Mac Studio, the most powerful Apple silicon machine at the time. The line served to reassure Mac Pro customers that the best was yet to come.

More than a year later, however, a Mac Pro running on Apple Silicon is still yet to come. The wait is compounded by the fact that the current Mac Pro running on Intel Xeon chips was introduced in 2019, and that machine was the long-awaited course correction for the 2013 Mac Pro.

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Exclusive: iOS 16.4 code references new ‘compute module’ device — Mac Pro, Reality Pro, or something else?

We’re still waiting on the Mac Pro, but two things are a must if it’s going to live up to the high expectations set by its predecessors: (1) It must be the most powerful Mac, and (2) it must be the most customizable Mac. 9to5mac has found a new “ComputeModule” device class in Apple’s iOS 16.4 developer disk image in the Xcode 16.4 beta release last week, and it could be the missing piece to Apple’s modular Mac Pro plans… or it could be a processor box for the Apple Reality Pro headset, or perhaps even a Raspberry Pi-like device. Let’s take a closer look.

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Apple manufacturing in Vietnam expanding, likely including the 2023 Mac Pro

Apple manufacturing in Vietnam | Da Nang

Apple manufacturing in Vietnam is set to expand, as the Cupertino company continues working on reducing its dependence on China. The 2023 Mac Pro looks likely to be one of the products assembled there, which would mean Apple dropping the “Made in USA” tag used for the 2019 model.

Foxconn already makes iPads and AirPods in Vietnam, but so far hasn’t begun iPhone or Mac assembly in the country …

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Apple may have overestimated its ability to create a Mac Pro with an Apple Silicon chip

Mac Pro

When Apple announced the transition of Macs powered by Intel processors to its own Apple Silicon in 2020, the company said it would complete the transition of the entire lineup in two years. However, that timeline has passed, and Apple still has one Intel Mac available in its lineup: the Mac Pro. Did Apple overestimate its ability to build a Mac Pro with an Apple Silicon chip?

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Report: Apple unlikely to launch new Mac Studio as it instead focuses on the Mac Pro

While the Mac Studio has been well-received since its launch last spring, Apple may not launch an upgraded model in the foreseeable future. Bloomberg reports that the upcoming Mac Pro with Apple Silicon is “similar in functionality to the Mac Studio,” and it could be redundant for Apple to sell both the Mac Pro and the Mac Studio.

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First Apple Silicon Mac Pro could come by spring as test machines run macOS 13.3

Earlier this week, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that Apple has canceled its plans to release a high-end variant of the Apple Silicon Mac Pro with the M2 Extreme chip. Now Gurman has reported that the first Apple Silicon Mac Pro is on track to be released this spring, as the company has already been testing it with an internal version of macOS Ventura 13.3.

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Gurman: New Apple Silicon Mac Pro will look identical to current model, lacks expandable RAM

2023 Mac Pro

In today’s edition of the Power On newsletter, Mark Gurman reiterates his reporting that plans for a high-spec Apple Silicon Mac Pro have been canceled.

Moreover, Gurman says the Apple Silicon Mac Pro (featuring merely an M2 Ultra chip) will also look identical to the current Intel Mac Pro, so customers should not expect any major design change. The product will also not support expandable RAM, as the Apple Silicon architecture means all memory is tied to the M2 chip.

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Some 2023 MacBooks to be made in Vietnam, hitting an important Apple milestone

2023 MacBooks (M1 MacBook Pro pictured)

Some 2023 MacBooks are set to be made in Vietnam, as Apple continues its push to reduce its dependence on China as a manufacturing base.

MacBook production could begin in Vietnam as early as May, says a new report. The piece doesn’t specify whether the plan refers to the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, or both – but the move would hit an important milestone in Apple’s diversification plans …

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Reported 2023 Mac Pro plan would be understandable, but still potentially concerning

2023 Apple Silicon Mac Pro report

The weekend saw Mark Gurman reporting on his understanding of a revised 2023 Mac Pro plan by Apple. Essentially, he believes Apple to have abandoned plans to make the machine the ultimate Mac, relying instead on user expansion options to unleash the full potential of the machine.

In a sense, that’s a return to the original concept of the first-generation Mac Pro way back in 2006 …

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Gurman: Apple cancels plans for high-end ‘M2 Extreme’ chip, but new Mac Pro will retain expandability options for RAM and storage

Apple Silicon Mac Pro

Apple has apparently scrapped plans to make a new Apple Silicon Mac Pro with a high-end “M2 Extreme” chip featuring 48 CPU cores and 152 GPU cores. That’s according to Mark Gurman in the latest edition of his Power On newsletter. Gurman also says the new Mac Pro will be manufactured in Vietnam, a stark departure from the “Made in USA” 2019 Intel Mac Pro.

The “Extreme” chip would have essentially been a dual M2 Ultra. But complexity and cost concerns seem to have shelved those plans. Gurman still says Apple is preparing to launch a new Mac Pro with an M2 Ultra inside, with a design that enables expandability of some components, like RAM and storage.

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