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Apple teases a new Mac Pro with insane computing chops and upgradeable parts

Apple teases a new Mac Pro with insane computing chops and upgradeable parts
[Photo: courtesy of Apple]

Apple still isn’t ready to launch the new Mac Pro it began talking about in 2017, but it is showing off the design and revealing some key details.

The new Mac Pro ditches the trash can design of the old version, and instead resembles a more traditional PC tower. (It also has a couple of hefty handles on top and wheels underneath for folks who need to move their computers around.)

[Photo: courtesy of Apple]
As for tech specs, the new Mac Pro supports Intel Xeon processors with up to 28 cores, and up to 1.5 TB of RAM, and it has a proprietary connector for high-end graphics cards. Each connector can handle up to two AMD Radeon Pro Vega II cards, and users can outfit the Mac Pro with two of those connectors (for four Vega II cards total). There’s also a new hardware acceleration card for video editing. Apple says all of this can handle editing up to three concurrent streams of raw 8K video, or up to 12 streams of 4K video.

To go with the new Mac Pro, Apple announced a new monitor, called the Pro Display XDR. It’s a 32-inch panel with “6K” (6016-by-3384) resolution and 10-bit color, and the Mac Pro can handle up to six of them chained together.

If all that seems like alphabet soup to you, that’s likely the point. Apple is pitching the Mac Pro as a tool for professional media creation and editing, and it’s rounded up partners like Red, Avid, Adobe, Blackmagic, Autodesk, Unity, and Unreal to optimize their software.

Apple says the new Mac Pro is coming this fall, and will start at $5,999. That’s with an 8-core Intel Xeon processor, 32 GB of RAM, AMD 580X Radeon Pro graphics, and a 256 GB solid state drive. The Pro Display XDR will start at $4,999.

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