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Apple intros new Mac Pro with "Nehalem" Xeon processors

post #1 of 505
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Apple on Tuesday introduced its new Mac Pro workstations using Intel's "Nehalem" Xeon processors and an updated system architecture that delivers twice the performance of the previous model.

"The new Mac Pro is a significant upgrade and starts at $300 less than before," said Apple senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing Phil Schiller. "The Mac Pro features an advanced system architecture, new faster processors and our best-ever graphics options to deliver a faster, more powerful system that our professional customers are going to love."

The new machine starts at $2,499 with 2.66GHz Intel Xeon processors with integrated memory controllers. Three channels of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC memory increase memory bandwidth 2.4 times while lowering memory latency up to 40 percent.

Apple promises three times greater video performance with the NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics card with 512MB of dedicated GDDR3 memory. An ATI Radeon HD 4870 is available as a custom option, and the Mac Pro has a Mini DisplayPort and DVI port, meaning it can support Apple's new LED Cinema Display as well as existing DVI based models including the 30-inch Apple Cinema HD Display.



Other features include:
Four direct-attach cable-free hard drive carriersCapable of up to 4TB internal storageMac Pro RAID card optionalExceeds current Energy Star 4.0 and future Energy Star 5.0 requirementsHighly recyclable aluminum enclosureInterior designed to be more material-efficientPVC-free internal cables and componentsNo brominated flame retardantsAchieves EPEAT Gold status
Specifications

Quad-core Mac Pro ($2,499):
one 2.66 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 3500 series processors with 8MB of L3 cache3GB of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memory, expandable up to 8GBNVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics with 512MB of GDDR3 memory640GB Serial ATA 3GB/s hard drive running at 7200 rpm18x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+/-R DL/DVD+/-RW/CD-RW)Mini DisplayPort and DVI (dual-link) for video output (adapters sold separately)four PCI Express 2.0 slotsfive USB 2.0 ports and four FireWire 800 portsBluetooth 2.1+EDRShips with Apple Keyboard with numerical keypad and Mighty Mouse
8-core Mac Pro ($3,299):
two 2.26 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5500 series processors with 8MB of shared L3 cache6GB of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memory, expandable up to 32GBNVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics with 512MB of GDDR3 memory640GB Serial ATA 3Gb/s hard drive running at 7200 rpm18x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+/-R DL/DVD+/-RW/CD-RW)Mini DisplayPort and DVI (dual-link) for video output (adapters sold separately)four PCI Express 2.0 slotsfive USB 2.0 ports and four FireWire 800 portsBluetooth 2.1+EDRShips with Apple Keyboard with numerical keypad and Mighty Mouse


Build to order options and accessories:
One 2.93 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor for the quad-core Mac ProTwo 2.66 GHz or two 2.93 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon processors for the 8-core Mac ProUp to 8GB for the quad-core Mac Pro, up to 32GB for the 8-core Mac Pro of 1066MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memoryUp to four 1TB Serial ATA hard drives running at 7200 rpmMac Pro RAID cardUp to two 18x SuperDrives with double-layer supportATI Radeon HD 4870 graphics with 512MB of GDDR5 memoryAirPort Extreme(R) 802.11nApple KeyboardApple Wireless KeyboardApple Wireless Mighty MouseMac OS X Server Leopard
Pricing and Availability

The new Mac Pro will be available next week through the online Apple Store, Apple Retail Stores, and authorized resellers.

The new quad-core Mac Pro is priced at $2,499 while the 8-core model starts at $3,299.
post #2 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple on Tuesday introduced its new Mac Pro workstations using Intel's "Nehalem" Xeon processors and an updated system architecture that delivers twice the performance of the previous model.

"The new Mac Pro is a significant upgrade and starts at $300 less than before," said Apple senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing Phil Schiller. "The Mac Pro features an advanced system architecture, new faster processors and our best-ever graphics options to deliver a faster, more powerful system that our professional customers are going to love."

The new machine starts at $2,499 with 2.66GHz Intel Xeon processors with integrated memory controllers. Three channels of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC memory increase memory bandwidth 2.4 times while lowering memory latency up to 40 percent.

Apple promises three times greater performance with the NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics card with 512MB of GDDR3 memory. An ATI Radeon HD 4870 is available as a custom option, and the Mac Pro has a Mini DisplayPort and DVI port, meaning it can support Apple's new LED Cinema Display as well as existing DVI based models including the 30-inch Apple Cinema HD Display.

Other features include:

Four direct-attach cable-free hard drive carriers
Capable of up to 4TB internal storage
Mac Pro RAID card optional
Exceeds current Energy Star 4.0 and future Energy Star 5.0 requirements
Highly recyclable aluminum enclosure
Interior designed to be more material-efficient
PVC-free internal cables and components
No brominated flame retardants
Achieves EPEAT Gold status

Specifications

Quad-core Mac Pro ($2,499):

one 2.66 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 3500 series processors with 8MB of L3 cache
3GB of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memory, expandable up to 8GB
NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics with 512MB of GDDR3 memory
640GB Serial ATA 3GB/s hard drive running at 7200 rpm
18x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+/-R DL/DVD+/-RW/CD-RW)
Mini DisplayPort and DVI (dual-link) for video output (adapters sold separately)
four PCI Express 2.0 slots
five USB 2.0 ports and four FireWire 800 ports
Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
Ships with Apple Keyboard with numerical keypad and Mighty Mouse

8-core Mac Pro ($3,299):

two 2.26 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5500 series processors with 8MB of shared L3 cache
6GB of 1066 MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memory, expandable up to 32GB
NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 graphics with 512MB of GDDR3 memory
640GB Serial ATA 3Gb/s hard drive running at 7200 rpm
18x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD+/-R DL/DVD+/-RW/CD-RW)
Mini DisplayPort and DVI (dual-link) for video output (adapters sold separately)
four PCI Express 2.0 slots
five USB 2.0 ports and four FireWire 800 ports
Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
Ships with Apple Keyboard with numerical keypad and Mighty Mouse

Build to order options and accessories:

One 2.93 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon processor for the quad-core Mac Pro
Two 2.66 GHz or two 2.93 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon processors for the 8-core Mac Pro
Up to 8GB for the quad-core Mac Pro, up to 32GB for the 8-core Mac Pro of 1066MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM memory
Up to four 1TB Serial ATA hard drives running at 7200 rpm
Mac Pro RAID card
Up to two 18x SuperDrives with double-layer support
ATI Radeon HD 4870 graphics with 512MB of GDDR5 memory
AirPort Extreme(R) 802.11n
Apple Keyboard
Apple Wireless Keyboard
Apple Wireless Mighty Mouse
Mac OS X Server Leopard

Pricing and Availability

The new Mac Pro will be available next week through the online Apple Store, Apple Retail Stores, and authorized resellers.

The new quad-core Mac Pro is priced at $2,499 while the 8-core model starts at $3,299.

Is this machine really worth its price tag compaired to the previous '8-cores as standard' generation?

Personally, i think not.
post #3 of 505
The updates should have been out about 8 months ago, this is nothing big.
post #4 of 505
Maybe, but I don't understand why you felt it necessary to quote the entire first post just to let us know that.

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post #5 of 505
Would have been a good update if not for massive price increases.
post #6 of 505

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People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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post #7 of 505
I guess we will have to see some benchmarks before we comment on value. I have a 8x 2.8 with a Nvidia 8800 Gt in it. It only cost $5800 with 30" display. Pricing the same options bumps its to $7000 with this model as near as I can tell. The upgrade from 8x 2.2ghz to 8x 2.6ghz is $1400!!!

One interesting thing is they completely took out ANY professional graphics card options. I do some work with CUDA and the gt 120 (rebranded 9500 from what I understand) is a downgrade from the 8800 I think. I would go for the ATI product but no CUDA.
post #8 of 505
Well at-least I'm excited. I'm going 8-core 2.66. Can't wait any longer...Yippeeeee!
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post #9 of 505
$2500 for a Mac Pro or $2200 for an iMac.
Both limited to 8GB of memory.
iMac includes display.
Mac Pro is expandable with video and disks.

My personal feeling is: buy the iMac and buy a new one in 2 years instead of expanding your Mac Pro. Especially as you will be able to sell your used iMac for $1000 USD.
post #10 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by UTisNUM1 View Post

The updates should have been out about 8 months ago, this is nothing big.

Aren't these chips brand new ones? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought these chips didn't EXIST eight months ago.
post #11 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post

$2500 for a Mac Pro or $2200 for an iMac.
Both limited to 8GB of memory.
iMac includes display.
Mac Pro is expandable with video and disks.

My personal feeling is: buy the iMac and buy a new one in 2 years instead of expanding your Mac Pro. Especially as you will be able to sell your used iMac for $1000 USD.

You can upgrade the Mac Pro to 32GB of memory, not 8GB.
post #12 of 505
...that with current economic conditions, even high-end Mac Pro buyers are cutting back. They are of course, free to do what they like but these incredible price increases look like a great way to shrink Mac Pro sales.

Maybe this is their intention. \
post #13 of 505
Damn, the single CPU is pricey. It's using a Xeon 3500 and they have the price points as the regular Core i7s.

I'm really shocked about the prices. You can buy or build a faster Core i7 for half that. And only 8GB of RAM? Even the 4 slot Intel board supports up to 16GB. I think you can probably put in 4GB DIMMs in there and get 16GB. I hope.
post #14 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Would have been a good update if not for massive price increases.

Bingo. Five hundred bucks more for eight cores, and Apple is flat out lying to say the cheapest model dropped $300 - there was already a BTO quad at that price, and comparing to the old $2799 model is bogus when it's a downgrade to HALF the cores.

Huge disappointment, I was planning on buying one of these the second they were announced because I never expected a gigantic price increase. Now I have to think long and hard - I have to admit a hackintosh is looking pretty good right now.

So is there a price drop on the previous gen quads? I don't see them listed on apple's website.
post #15 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by UTisNUM1 View Post

You can upgrade the Mac Pro to 32GB of memory, not 8GB.

I think he's referring to the single CPU model.
post #16 of 505
I figured that, that was my mistake. That actually does suck. Why take away the expandability options for the Mac Pro? That doesn't make much sense, especially for a Professional Machine.
post #17 of 505
While the nehalem 2.66 is quite a bit faster then the old one introducing a new quad core for the same price as the octacore
post #18 of 505
Maybe this upgrade is meant to make those who already bought a MacPro feel better...

I know I do
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post #19 of 505
I paid nearly $2500 for my Dual 1.8 G5, with the Nvidia Ultra card...
The stock 4-core Mac Pro seems like a slamming machine for the same price...
post #20 of 505
As usual, all you people do is complain.
post #21 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post

Maybe this upgrade is meant to make those who already bought a MacPro feel better...

I know I do


Yes, I do too! Especially since I bought my 8-core the day it was announced about 14 months ago... I'm all for progressing the new machines, but it is also nice to have the "latest and greatest." This update, (and price increase) doesn't make me feel so bad...
post #22 of 505
I think this settles it: The FW400 interface is dead!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

Aren't these chips brand new ones? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought these chips didn't EXIST eight months ago.

They didn't, but people have unrealistic expectations.
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post #23 of 505
How much???
OK, can I have my matte Apple display, now?
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post #24 of 505
Well at the very least it confirms that Apple isn't about to withdraw from the ├╝ber high-end pro market.

I'm a bit worried now that the next generation of Cinema Displays are going to cost more per square inch than a penthouse apartment with views over Central Park.
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post #25 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post



They didn't, but people have unrealistic expectations.

True, and the Nehalem's are also much more expensive..
post #26 of 505
I guess we will have to see some benchmarks before we comment on value. I have a 8x 2.8 with a Nvidia 8800 Gt in it. It only cost $5800 with 30" display. Pricing the same options bumps its to $7000 with this model as near as I can tell. The upgrade from 8x 2.2ghz to 8x 2.6ghz is $1400!!!

One interesting thing is they completely took out ANY professional graphics card options. I do some work with CUDA and the gt 120 (rebranded 9500 from what I understand) is a downgrade from the 8800 I think. I would go for the ATI product but no CUDA.
post #27 of 505
So which should I get? The base Mac Pro or the high-end iMac?
I'll use it mostly for games, Photoshop, some Final Cut and 3D...

(Which has the best price compared to it's features?)
post #28 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


I agree that the price is high, but the price of Mac pros is always pretty high anyway and mostly inconsequential to the purchase decision.

My biggest gripe about this machine is that if the picture is accurate, there seems to be a new motherboard, and new configuration of the entire lower half of the insides. So again, while masquerading as an "upgradeable" Mac, this machine is essentially completely different from the previous model.

I'm not really sure why they even bother to let us open the case since the odds of upgrading a Mac pro past the stuff that you generally get when you purchase it, are something like slim to none. Anyone know if the new processors would pop into the older MacPros? It sure looks like the answer is no yet again.
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post #29 of 505
who is saying the pro is limited to 8GB of ram? They have build to order options of up to 32gb (if you are INSANELY rich)
post #30 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Outsider View Post

I think he's referring to the single CPU model.

Any reason why the single processor model would not support 4 GB RAM modules (other than Apple not offering it as a BTO configuration)?
I understand that with the memory controller now on the processor, the maximum number of memory modules is now a function of the number of processors. It is a pity that you cannot have an 4-core, 8 memory slot Mac Pro anymore but that is the price to pay to have much faster memory access.
post #31 of 505
Couldn't they have done something, anything to distinguish it from it's 6 year old design?
post #32 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I think this settles it: The FW400 interface is dead!!!

Yes, but just get a FW800-FW400 cable and forget about it. Just pretend that FW400 is just another kind of FW800 connector (that happens to have the FW400 speed). You already have standard FW400 and mini-FW400 connectors, so now you have standard FW800 connectors and legacy FW-connectors (aka FW400).
post #33 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

I agree that the price is high, but the price of Mac pros is always pretty high anyway and mostly inconsequential to the purchase decision.

I've always thought that the previous 'standard configurations' offered exceptional value for money.

But with regards to the new standard configuration at least Dick Turpin had the decency to wear a mask!
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post #34 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

I agree that the price is high, but the price of Mac pros is always pretty high anyway and mostly inconsequential to the purchase decision.

My biggest gripe about this machine is that if the picture is accurate, there seems to be a new motherboard, and new configuration of the entire lower half of the insides. So again, while masquerading as an "upgradeable" Mac, this machine is essentially completely different from the previous model.

I'm not really sure why they even bother to let us open the case since the odds of upgrading a Mac pro past the stuff that you generally get when you purchase it, are something like slim to none. Anyone know if the new processors would pop into the older MacPros? It sure looks like the answer is no yet again.

It's based on intel's new architecture, nehalem, like all new systems from every manufacturer using intel, and none of them are going to fit into older machines (and vice-versa) because it uses a new socket designed to use a completely new bus system (like AMDs hypertransport) and NUMA for ram with the memory controller integrated instead of on a 'bridge'.

In short, you were never going to get a system that you drop the procs between generations this time, and it's not apple's fault.

As for the upgrading, there will still be procs in the 5400, 5300, and 5100 series available for a while for upgrading older mac pros if you're like me and willing to open the machine (and mac pros are reasonably easy to upgrade if you know what you're doing), certainly video cards, ram, and disk will be available from all over for a long time to come.

That said, the new machine is pretty damn upgradeable, more easily than my own if for no other reason than ECC DDR3 ram is easier (and cheaper!) to get than FB-DIMMs for the older gen machines.
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MP (3,1 oct 2.8, 10GB. 10.6 on 4x1TB RAID10, Win/Lin on 1x2TB, 2407WFP on 1x5770 + 2xSamsung 910t on 1xGT120)
also a lot of other systems :-p
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post #35 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Anyone know if the new processors would pop into the older MacPros? It sure looks like the answer is no yet again.

Of course it won't. They're using completely new processors with new architectures. It would be impossible to drop an i7 processor into any older motherboard.
post #36 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil-TB2 View Post

Anyone know if the new processors would pop into the older MacPros? It sure looks like the answer is no yet again.

How do pop in a processor which connects directly to memory into a motherboard which is designed to hold the memory itself?
A computer is essentially a motherboard (+optionally the box holding the motherboard) plus the components: processor, memory, hard drive, optical drive, graphic card, other cards plus peripherals (monitor, keyboard, printer, etc.)

So, if you want to upgrade a computer, it is essentially either upgrading the components (which you can do in a Mac Pro) or upgrading the computer itself (ie, the motherboard). In the latter case you might be able to re-use some components if the technology has not changed in between (ATA vs. SATA, ADC vs. DVI, FW vs. USB, memory type). If you want to upgrade the computer, Apple only sells you the motherboard + the box together (the box incl. power supply, fans etc.) plus you have to buy at least one processor, one graphic card, one hard drive, a keyboard and a mouse. Whether you can upgrade components like the processor or re-use components is essentially a decision of Intel.
post #37 of 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by noirdesir View Post

How do pop in a processor which connects directly to memory into a motherboard which is designed to hold the memory itself?
A computer is essentially a motherboard (+optionally the box holding the motherboard) plus the components: processor, memory, hard drive, optical drive, graphic card, other cards plus peripherals (monitor, keyboard, printer, etc.)

So, if you want to upgrade a computer, it is essentially either upgrading the components (which you can do in a Mac Pro) or upgrading the computer itself (ie, the motherboard). In the latter case you might be able to re-use some components if the technology has not changed in between (ATA vs. SATA, ADC vs. DVI, FW vs. USB, memory type). If you want to upgrade the computer, Apple only sells you the motherboard + the box together (the box incl. power supply, fans etc.) plus you have to buy at least one processor, one graphic card, one hard drive, a keyboard and a mouse. Whether you can upgrade components like the processor or re-use components is essentially a decision of Intel.

Personally, I'd rather have a machine that is stable and works, rather than tinkering around with alternate processors and motherboards and then being frustrated when i get a blue screen of death. Luckily, I'm a Mac, and I am just happy in my land of productivity and creativity.
post #38 of 505
Looks like 2 different main boards, one for quad core with upto 8GB and the other 8 core with more slots for 32Gb. Was the previous Mac Pro like this?

Also just notice the 8 core base model is 2,26 Mhz not 2,66 Mhz - very cheeky Apple

Well quad core iMac would of being nice. So it's a quad core Pro for me, Aperture / Photoshop and running development OS in parallel v3.0.
post #39 of 505
- Two 2.26GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
- 6GB (6x1GB)
- 640GB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s
- 1TB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s
- ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB
- One 18x SuperDrive
- Apple LED Cinema Display (24" flat panel)
- Apple Mighty Mouse
- Apple Keyboard with Numeric Keypad (English) and User's Guide
- AirPort Extreme Wi-Fi Card with 802.11n
- AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac Pro (w/or w/o Display) - Auto-enroll

Is this really worth the five grands they are asking me? Give me a break.
post #40 of 505
If I get two new Apple LED 24" displays to go with the new Mac Pro, I assume I'll have to plug one in the Mini DP port and one in the DVI (through an adaptor). By doing this, will the signal/display quality and frequency across the two displays match? Or will the one plugged in the DVI via adaptor be slightly worse?

If so, can both displays somehow (though an alternate adaptor) be plugged into the one Mini DP port?

Know what I mean?
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