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New Mac Pro release date, rumours and leaked images

Karen Haslam | Jan. 7, 2013
The new Mac Pro release date is one of the biggest questions professional Mac users have right now. In this article we explore some of the rumours and uncover potential leaked images of the new Mac Pro. Read our New Mac Pro release date, rumours and leaked images article to find out more.

New Mac Pro rumours - RAM

Where the high-end iMac is capable of supporting a maximum 32GB RAM, Mac Pros can already handle 64GB. That's probably more than enough for most, but in the pro area there are already workstations offering more. Take the Dell Precision T7600 Workstation or the HP Z820 Workstation, which already offer 512GB RAM.

New Mac Pro rumours

Below we round up the latest rumours about the new ports and extensions in the new Mac Pro.

Thunderbolt in the new Mac Pro

One thing about the Mac Pro update in June really didn't make sense. It didn't include a Thunderbolt port. Given that it's the Pro market that is most likely to spend money on Thunderbolt accessories this was a strange omission. For example, Thunderbolt lets you connect four HD screens at a time, who, other than a pro user, would want to do that. Unless Apple has given up on Thunderbolt, it seems likely that the new Mac Pro will feature more than one Thunderbolt port.

Thunderbolt (previously called Light Peak) is a peripheral-connection technology, developed by Intel with collaboration from Apple, that combines data, video, audio, and power in a single connection. Based on the PCI Express and DisplayPort architectures, Thunderbolt allows for high-speed connection of peripherals such as hard drives, RAID arrays, video-capture solutions, and network interfaces, and it can transmit high-definition video using the DisplayPort protocol. Each Thunderbolt port provides up to 10 Watts of power to connected peripherals, and up to 10 Gigabits per second (Gbps) of data throughput (faster than USB 3).

USB 3.0 in the new Mac Pro

Speaking of which, the new Mac Pro doesn't even offer USB 3. Apple's pro Mac is still stuck in the dark ages of USB 2. Another reason for the assumption that Apple is waiting for the Xeon E5 V2 processor to launch is that it will support USB 3. The current Sandy Bridge chipsets do not support USB 3.0 natively, according to LogicRumours.

FireWire in the new Mac Pro

One thing that the current Mac Pro has that future Mac Pros may not is FireWire. It seems likely that by in gaining Thunderbolt and USB 3, that FireWire will be culled. The standard has already disappeared from all of Apple's other Macs, with the exception of the Mac mini, although the first time Apple attempted to remove it the creative world was in uproar.

PCI Express expansion in the new Mac Pro

One thing that Apple's Mac Pro offers that no other Mac offers is PCI expansion, and that is a key reason for the appeal to professional users. These expansion slots are essential to users who wish to add video cards, sound, networking, RAID arrays, and other connectivity options to their Mac. There are currently three such slots.


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