New 'pro' iMac said to have discrete GPU and Xeon E3 processor, ship at end of 2017

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited April 19
New supply chain reports suggest that Apple is gearing up for new iMac production, with a "server grade" model with Xeon E3 processor reportedly in the works.




According to a new data gleaned during a study by supply chain monitor DigiTimes, Apple has two new iMac models in the pipeline, for official launch in the second half of 2017. The units, said to be built by Quanta Computer are said to be 21.5- and 27-inches in size.

The "server-grade" iMac reportedly sports the Xeon E3-1285 processor, between 16GB and 64GB of ECC RAM, up to 2TB of NVMe SSE storage, and the "latest" discrete GPU. DigiTimes doesn't expect availability of the high-end iMac until the very end of 2017.

DigiTimes does generally provide accurate information from within Apple's supply chain. However, the publication has an unreliable track record in predicting Apple's future product plans. often predicting both timing and features incorrectly for upcoming products.

In the beginning of April, Apple declared that it was renewing its focus on "pro" users. And told a gathering of reporters that not only was a new iMac with a pro consumer focus coming, but so were new modular Mac Pros.

"And now you look at today's 5K iMac," Apple senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi said, "top configs, it's incredibly powerful, and a huge fraction of what would've traditionally - whether it's audio editing, video editing, graphics, arts, and so forth - that would've previously absolutely required the Mac Pros of old, are being well addressed by iMac."

According to Apple's research, approximately 30 percent of the entire Mac user base use pro apps at least once per week, for media creation and software development tasks. Within this group, there is an 80/20 split between notebooks and desktops in terms of sales, and of these desktop sales, the iMac outpaces the Mac Pro.

A new iMac isn't expected to include a touch screen.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 76
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 1,603member
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    lkrupppatchythepiraterepressthisDilirX
  • Reply 2 of 76
    The retarded marketing department at Intel decided to make this chip useless by capping memory options at 32 GB. Please Apple fix that by going big on your own processor designs, even if it takes time to get things right like SMT.
    edited April 18 williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 76
    Swami BaloneySwami Baloney Posts: 13unconfirmed, member
    I already have a GPU in my 2009 iMac.
  • Reply 4 of 76
    irelandireland Posts: 16,555member
    Some, I would say a good % of pros choosing iMac 5K may be a of reflection not how well it suits them, but how much Apple botched things on Mac Pro. For me iMac 5K suits me as a desktop machine perfectly, but I'm not a real pro. Actual honest to goodness pros with real professional needs aren't being met by Apple currently. Apple refocused and this is why they called their favourable press in line to "announce" what they did.

    I hope my vision for the future of Apple's desktop prossional workstation where you have something akin perhaps to a series of interlocking cubes with varied features which can be bought, customised and put together in virtually any order to build the perfect Mac Pro for each customer is the direction Apple is thinking. Not just a modular box, but a truly modular design. Killing away Mac mini in the process and shipping one functional 'beginner' cube as its replacement. Allowing those users the option to build upon this professional starter setup, later, at any time as their needs become more and more professional. What upon reading my idea Spam Sandwich coined.... I think 'smart desktop computing'... correct me if I'm wrong Spam?

    A future where each Mac Pro setup tells a story totally specific to that pro Mac desktop user. And iMac covers everything else desktop concerning Apple. I also think, whatever iMac ends of shipping later this year and next and so on, that Apple's 2018 professional display should be beyond 27" and 8K and that Apple should reserve the term iMac Pro for a model that has a similar screen larger than 27", 8K and with real Pro guts through and through—whenever this becomes possible.
    edited April 18 thtrepressthisjblongz
  • Reply 5 of 76
    No one needs a "server grade iMac" What does that even mean besides the XEON? A 4 core Xeon would be a waste of everybodys money. No one needs ECC Ram. Not even in a Workstation. If they want to build an iMac for Pro Users they need to put in an i7-6950X with 10 cores, the option for 128GB of Ram and a discrete Nvidia Desktop grade GPU. If Razer can acomplish to put a full gtx 1080 in a Laptop I am sure Apple can put one into an iMac who is attached to power non stop and doesn't need to be as thin as a Macbook.
    xzuemoellerjblongz
  • Reply 6 of 76
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 458member
    Not sure the specs rumored even beat top bto iMac. Certainly lacking benchmark wise unless they are suggesting adding Ecc ram and moving to 135w Gpu is going to make massive difference.

    then again why couldn't Apple just start offering this as bto if it's a good configuration. why wait till later in the year?

    that said isn't there a crossover i7 Xeon due later in the year?
    i remember it being touted as Macpro option maybe it could be imacpro bound. 
    edited April 18
  • Reply 7 of 76
    No one needs a "server grade iMac" What does that even mean besides the XEON? A 4 core Xeon would be a waste of everybodys money. No one needs ECC Ram. Not even in a Workstation. If they want to build an iMac for Pro Users they need to put in an i7-6950X with 10 cores, the option for 128GB of Ram and a discrete Nvidia Desktop grade GPU. If Razer can acomplish to put a full gtx 1080 in a Laptop I am sure Apple can put one into an iMac who is attached to power non stop and doesn't need to be as thin as a Macbook.
    If you want more than 32gb ram, an E3 is out - has to be an E5+ or i7.
  • Reply 8 of 76
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 566member
    No one needs a "server grade iMac" What does that even mean besides the XEON? A 4 core Xeon would be a waste of everybodys money. No one needs ECC Ram. Not even in a Workstation. If they want to build an iMac for Pro Users they need to put in an i7-6950X with 10 cores, the option for 128GB of Ram and a discrete Nvidia Desktop grade GPU. If Razer can acomplish to put a full gtx 1080 in a Laptop I am sure Apple can put one into an iMac who is attached to power non stop and doesn't need to be as thin as a Macbook.
    Replace "Pro Users" with "me" and you'd make an objectively accurate statement. 
    StrangeDayswilliamlondonargonautNameo_afrodri
  • Reply 9 of 76
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 566member
    This would be a nice start. I'd hope that they would build on this with BTO options. 

    I own an extremely high end display, so I'm holding out for a headless Mac Pro. But I often work on-site and I'm sure many clients would buy these by the pallet. Most of the design agencies I work with have transitioned the bulk of their workstations to iMacs over the last few years. 

    Better GPUs would certainly help. Not sure what else is quantifiably better. More max RAM? I assume that they know what they are doing if they've go down this path. 
    mattinoz
  • Reply 10 of 76
    Seems like there is more info needed to make sense of all of this.
    mattinoz
  • Reply 11 of 76
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 4,726member
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    Hopefully Apple will consult with real pros (not the ones here) to get their input. Alex Lindsey (Lucasfilm, Pixel Corps) pretty much spelled out his desires on last week’s MacBreak Weekly show. He wants a 2U configuration with the ability to swap out HDDs/SSDs and GPUs. Yes, he wants a rack mountable Mac Pro, not a cheese grater.
    argonaut
  • Reply 12 of 76
    sog35sog35 Posts: 12,408member
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I like Cybart but I disagree with his Mac is Apple's achilles heel. His hypothesis is that Apple does not have enough resources to both produce new pro quality Macs and iOS devices. I disagree 100%. Apple has enough $ and resources to make awesome Mac Pro's and iOS devices. Its not one of the other.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 76
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 1,413member
    ireland said:
    Some, I would say a good % of pros choosing iMac 5K may be a of reflection not how well it suits them, but how much Apple botched things on Mac Pro. For me iMac 5K suits me as a desktop machine perfectly, but I'm not a real pro. Actual honest to goodness pros with real professional needs aren't being met by Apple currently. Apple refocused and this is why they called their favourable press in line to "announce" what they did.
    That's simply not true, because there is no singular definition of what a pro is. Different pros have different needs. As a software dev pro (which Apple said they believe most of their pros to be, based on applications installed), the 5k Mac and MBPs are super adequate. Some people need more GPU power, that cited "single digit" of all Macs, but we cannot say ALL pros are they. We can't all be science modelers or whatever. 
    williamlondonbrucemcpscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 76
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,743member
    lkrupp said:
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    Hopefully Apple will consult with real pros (not the ones here) to get their input. Alex Lindsey (Lucasfilm, Pixel Corps) pretty much spelled out his desires on last week’s MacBreak Weekly show. He wants a 2U configuration with the ability to swap out HDDs/SSDs and GPUs. Yes, he wants a rack mountable Mac Pro, not a cheese grater.
    Thats an interesting concept...I'm to sure that will meet most users needs, but perhaps they could offer this as a BTO. Not everyone has a rack sitting next to them. I could see that option working as a Mac server again should one need it. I'd love to see a rack mountable Mac just for that use alone. 

    I can maybe see where Alex is going with that. You could create a small rendering farm with a couple (few?) rack mounted Mac Pro's. Whether or not this meets the needs of the average true pro I'm not sure. I'm not a pro so I can't honestly say. 

    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I'd rather Apple make it right and not just slap a bunch of parts together with an Apple logo on the side of it. If you want that, then go get an HP or a Dell. There's a reason why Apple takes as long as it does to engineer a Mac, or any product for that matter.  People like Neil will be the first to bitch too if someone Apple released has a major issue simply because Apple rushed a product out the door just to say we upgraded the Mac Pro. You're better off to do it right the first time, not the second or third. 
    edited April 18 williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 76
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 1,413member

    No one needs a "server grade iMac" What does that even mean besides the XEON? A 4 core Xeon would be a waste of everybodys money. No one needs ECC Ram. Not even in a Workstation. If they want to build an iMac for Pro Users they need to put in an i7-6950X with 10 cores, the option for 128GB of Ram and a discrete Nvidia Desktop grade GPU. If Razer can acomplish to put a full gtx 1080 in a Laptop I am sure Apple can put one into an iMac who is attached to power non stop and doesn't need to be as thin as a Macbook.
    Love it when somebody says "no one needs" when they mean "I don't need". 

    Also, now that the rumor is apple is doing 64gb, you're moving the goal posts to say a pro needs 128gb of ram. This game never ends. 
    williamlondonargonautbrucemcmike1Deelronwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 76
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,743member

    No one needs a "server grade iMac" What does that even mean besides the XEON? A 4 core Xeon would be a waste of everybodys money. No one needs ECC Ram. Not even in a Workstation. If they want to build an iMac for Pro Users they need to put in an i7-6950X with 10 cores, the option for 128GB of Ram and a discrete Nvidia Desktop grade GPU. If Razer can acomplish to put a full gtx 1080 in a Laptop I am sure Apple can put one into an iMac who is attached to power non stop and doesn't need to be as thin as a Macbook.
    Love it when somebody says "no one needs" when they mean "I don't need". 

    Also, now that the rumor is apple is doing 64gb, you're moving the goal posts to say a pro needs 128gb of ram. This game never ends. 
    Well don't you know certain people here want Apple to design a Mac specifically for their needs? Oh, and well they have a couple of friends/co-workers that also like that idea so that means everyone wants this.  I mean thats not totally absurd is it?
    mike1watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 76
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 1,603member
    sog35 said:
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I like Cybart but I disagree with his Mac is Apple's achilles heel. His hypothesis is that Apple does not have enough resources to both produce new pro quality Macs and iOS devices. I disagree 100%. Apple has enough $ and resources to make awesome Mac Pro's and iOS devices. Its not one of the other.
    I replied to him that Apple needs an SVP of Mac hardware engineering. He didn't like that suggestion. I still believe it's the right thing to do. The Mac isn't going anywhere anytime soon. It needs attention. Apple shouldn't cede the professional market to Microsoft and make no mistake Microsoft is going after that market in a big way. Don't let it happen Apple.
  • Reply 18 of 76
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,743member
    sog35 said:
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I like Cybart but I disagree with his Mac is Apple's achilles heel. His hypothesis is that Apple does not have enough resources to both produce new pro quality Macs and iOS devices. I disagree 100%. Apple has enough $ and resources to make awesome Mac Pro's and iOS devices. Its not one of the other.
    I replied to him that Apple needs an SVP of Mac hardware engineering. He didn't like that suggestion. I still believe it's the right thing to do. The Mac isn't going anywhere anytime soon. It needs attention. Apple shouldn't cede the professional market to Microsoft and make no mistake Microsoft is going after that market in a big way. Don't let it happen Apple.
    How many real Pros are actually going directly to Microsoft? 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 76
    sog35sog35 Posts: 12,408member
    sog35 said:
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I like Cybart but I disagree with his Mac is Apple's achilles heel. His hypothesis is that Apple does not have enough resources to both produce new pro quality Macs and iOS devices. I disagree 100%. Apple has enough $ and resources to make awesome Mac Pro's and iOS devices. Its not one of the other.
    I replied to him that Apple needs an SVP of Mac hardware engineering. He didn't like that suggestion. I still believe it's the right thing to do. The Mac isn't going anywhere anytime soon. It needs attention. Apple shouldn't cede the professional market to Microsoft and make no mistake Microsoft is going after that market in a big way. Don't let it happen Apple.
    agree.

    Apple needs to use their $$$ to hire new talent to take control of the Mac unit. There is no reason why Cook/Ive needs to have full control of the Mac line.
    welshdog
  • Reply 20 of 76
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 1,603member
    macxpress said:
    lkrupp said:
    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    Hopefully Apple will consult with real pros (not the ones here) to get their input. Alex Lindsey (Lucasfilm, Pixel Corps) pretty much spelled out his desires on last week’s MacBreak Weekly show. He wants a 2U configuration with the ability to swap out HDDs/SSDs and GPUs. Yes, he wants a rack mountable Mac Pro, not a cheese grater.
    Thats an interesting concept...I'm to sure that will meet most users needs, but perhaps they could offer this as a BTO. Not everyone has a rack sitting next to them. I could see that option working as a Mac server again should one need it. I'd love to see a rack mountable Mac just for that use alone. 

    Neil Cybart from Above Avalon put up a post saying the Mac is Apple's achilles' heel. Basically arguing that the Mac is a barrier which prevents Apple for giving enough attention to what comes next. John Gruber disagrees. Ben Thompson says Apple just needs to ship a damm tower and not be precious about it. I don't agree with Cybart about the Mac being a "major vulnerability" for Apple. But I also don't agree that Apple isn't shipping a new Mac Pro this year because they're being too precious about it's hardware design. I think the fact Apple didn't exist the Pro market means they're working on something bigger here. Otherwise they could've just brought back the cheese grater and been done with it. Apple doesn't put resources on something for nothing.
    I'd rather Apple make it right and not just slap a bunch of parts together with an Apple logo on the side of it. If you want that, then go get an HP or a Dell. There's a reason why Apple takes as long as it does to engineer a Mac, or any product for that matter.  People like Neil will be the first to bitch too if someone Apple released has a major issue simply because Apple rushed a product out the door just to say we upgraded the Mac Pro. You're better off to do it right the first time, not the second or third. 
    Well on one of the last Macbreak Weekly shows Alex Lindsey basically said he wished Apple would get out of the Mac hardware market and just license macOS to 3rd party hardware OEMs. That's how upset some pro Mac users are. He seems like just the kind of customer Apple wouldn't want to lose.
    xzublastdoor
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