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Apple's recent financial results numbers revealed that last quarter a full 70% of their computer sales were notebooks. While the general industry trend has also been towards notebook sales, part of the reason for Apple's dramatic shift has been a lack of recent Mac Pro updates. Apple last updated the Mac Pro over a year ago in January of 2008.

Several MacRumors forum members have been closely tracking all the possible Mac Pro news in lengthy discussion thread in our forums. Forum member Tallest Skil has even organized an extensive (though speculative) summary post of what might be expected in the next Mac Pro.

Readers waiting for the new Mac Pro, however, received a useful tidbit of news last week from Fuzilla.com. According to their report, Intel is expected to finally start selling Nehalem-based Xeon processors on March 29th, 2009. (Though some retailers are already showing them in stock).

These Nehalem Xeon processors are expected to be used in the next generation Mac Pro and should provide substantial performance boosts over existing models. Last we had heard for their release was simply 1st Quarter 2009. These Nehalem Xeon processors have been previously described as "ridiculously fast".

Unfortunately, Intel's release date does not guarantee a simultaneous Apple announcement, but should indicate a refresh is drawing near.



Article Link: Mac Pro Suitable Xeon (Nehalem) Processors Due March 29th
 

motulist

macrumors 601
Dec 2, 2003
4,211
552
Sometimes Apple gets significantly early delivery of products from Intel before other manufacturers get delivery. I wonder if that'll happen in this case, which could mean an even earlier release of the mac pro update.
 
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mudenza

macrumors regular
Oct 21, 2006
172
0
And who knows, possibly a simultaneous release of Snow Leopard too, just in time for the new Mac Pros (and eventually iMacs) at the end of March?
 
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Santabean2000

macrumors 68000
Nov 20, 2007
1,811
1,866
Ridiculously fast eh..? Can't wait to see the big boy going full monty.

Would grab one in a heart beat, but can't justify it (or afford it), damn it!

New Mac Mini though...
 
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porky

macrumors regular
Oct 12, 2003
172
6
BELGIUM
Why wait so long? Bring out a "light" version with an Intel i7 CPU.

That's what we all want! :)
 
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alexbates

macrumors 65816
Nov 24, 2008
1,082
0
Georgia, USA
The new Xeon being in the future Mac Pro sounds about right.

Apple should come out with all of the products that need to be upgraded at the same time.
 
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Kusakun

macrumors member
May 9, 2008
57
21
I want to know how big is the difference with the current models.

Everytime they say its incredibly fast compared to previous models I dont believe them...

Lets wait
 
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Tallest Skil

macrumors P6
Aug 13, 2006
16,044
4
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
I want to know how big is the difference with the current models.

Everytime they say its incredibly fast compared to previous models I dont believe them...

Lets wait

It'll be around 40% improvement Leopard (Harpertown) to Leopard (Gainestown) and 2x improvement Leopard (Harpertown) to Snow Leopard (Gainestown).
 
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wizard

macrumors 68040
May 29, 2003
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Of all the machines to be considered outdated the Mac Pro comes in last!

Really I'm not sure why there is an attempt to correlate a drop in sales here with the hardware age. For server grade hardware the Mac Pro isn't that bad, it certainly wouldn't keep people from buying it if they needed a powerful machine.

There are far bigger concerns for Apple in the rest of the line up. They seemed to have lost their groove with respect to the Mini or that marketplace and the iMac is extremely limited with respect to it's architecture. Even that doesn't cover Apples biggest problem which is the total lack of a midrange product. Call it xMac if you want but the fact remains there is a huge hole in Apples line up. That would be a performance targetted machine to fill in performance and capability wise between iMac and the Pro. Today this should arrive as an i7 based machine with multiple disk drive slots and a good GPU card. Ideally it would be able to address 32GB of RAM too.

By the way when Apples new hardware does come, I'm expecting to see greatly improved main memory capabilities across the line up. It is the one thing that Apple has had it's head up it's back side for a very long time. I'm not sure where the Mac Pro should top out at but the recent announcements from Samsung indicate that the chips are there for really huge memory arrays.



Dave
 
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wizard

macrumors 68040
May 29, 2003
3,854
571
What is this more BS?

It'll be around 40% improvement Leopard (Harpertown) to Leopard (Gainestown)
These off the cuff remarks are exactly what the original poster was concerned about. The fact is we won't know jack until Apple delivers the hardware. The problem is simple, we don't know how well i7 will work on the current GCC code and Apples libraries.

Don't get me wrong as I'd love to see that sort of gain but we can not assume that it will be that good. Especially if those assumptions are based on Intel optimizing compilers and other tools.
and 2x improvement Leopard (Harpertown) to Snow Leopard (Gainestown).
I'd really like to know where you got those numbers. I realize the whole point of Snow Leopard is optimization and performance improvements but I think a 2 X jump acroos the board is a little much, at least on a clock for clock basis.

I'm hoping I'm wrong here. There is huge room for improvements in the libraries though so maybe this is reachable. The thing is if the code improves that much it will help out on older hardware too. In other words you would still need to see a comparison between SL on old hardware and new i7 hardware to get a valid comparison.


Dave
 
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Tallest Skil

macrumors P6
Aug 13, 2006
16,044
4
1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
These off the cuff remarks are exactly what the original poster was concerned about.

That's what fricking Bloomfield even gets. Off the cuff nothing.

We know nothing about Snow Leopard, but Harpertown was 2x performance on the same software over Clovertown, so what's wrong with having the software designed to improve performance picking up Nehalem's slack?
 
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Gregintosh

macrumors 68000
Jan 29, 2008
1,866
496
Chicago
As far as I know Core i7 is a consumer chip. The Mac Pro is a professional/workstation computer.

So people who keep insisting Apple put in a consumer chip in this machine to hold them over until a new professional-grade chip becomes available please **** already, it will never happen. It would be highly inconsistent with what this machine is intended for and who its intended for.

It'd be like saying "hey Apple, update your computers with Ubuntu Linux until Snow Leopard is done to hold us over"

Gee, lets see the progression here.. Mac OS 10.5 Leopard... Ubuntu Linux... Mac OS 10.6 Snow Leopard. Does that progression make sense to you? No!

Neither does Workstation Processor -> Consumer Processor -> Workstation Processor.

Let's be logical here. Obviously if the Mac Pro is updated it will be updated with components of the same grade as in the previous version.

Despite what benchmarks may say speed-wise, the Core i7 is meant to be a desktop processor for consumers and it does not support key features required for a reliable workstation or server computer such as error correcting memory. For this, among other reasons, IT WILL NEVER BE IN A MAC PRO GET IT THROUGH YOUR HEADS THANKS.

STOP THE CORE i7 B.S. for Mac Pros, its a waste of everyone's time and this forum's bandwidth.

The iMac and the Mac Mini are the consumer grade products, so whatever consumer grade processors are available are fair game in those discussions, but leave them out of the Mac Pro. Mac Pro = Pro Machine = Pro Processors.
 
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lewchenko

macrumors regular
Jun 8, 2004
227
202
These Xeon based nehalem's will cost an absolute packet. Every new release of apple's products recently in the laptop department has also seen a considerable cost increase (even more so when you take into account the fact that remotes and cable converters must be bought separately now). Expect the mac pro is cost more in the refresh too.....

The new Xeon's may well be suitable for high end pro work, but I echo the sentiments of many here when I say they are not affordable... nowhere near.

I also dont want an iMac with its own screen.

I'd like a mini if it were priced effectively, but as its been about 18months since it was released Im not holding my breath. (plus then I can barely upgrade it when needed)... its a hobson's choice really.

Christ Apple.. no wonder your desktop sales are plummeting.. you are not building anything that 90% of people actually want or can afford.

And their excuse... a mid range tower will eat into their pro sales.. NEWSFLASH APPLE.. your pro sales are diving.. and we are in a recession.

Mid Range Tower please....
 
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Chicane-UK

macrumors 6502
Apr 26, 2008
442
1,069
Amen. A mid-range tower could straddle the power-user iMac market (where the 8800GS simply can't cut it for stuff like gaming because it has to drive the much higher resolution 24" display) and the Pro customer who's having to cut back because of more expensive times.

Come on Apple - so many people want a midrange tower Mac with some upgrade options! Do it already!!
 
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AidenShaw

macrumors P6
Feb 8, 2003
18,667
4,674
The Peninsula
They're virtually the SAME CHIP

As far as I know Core i7 is a consumer chip. The Mac Pro is a professional/workstation computer.

The only real difference between the two is that a Xeon will work in a multi-socket computer. The current Core i7 will only work in a single-socket motherboard.

The Gainestown "Xeon" (we won't know the real name until Intel announces it) is not a "better" chip - it just has the ability to run on a dual-socket motherboard, and it has a much, much higher price.

Nobody is asking for a quad Core i7 mini-tower as a "stopgap" - there's a huge hole in Apple's desktop product line.
 
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Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
If the next MP doesn't have a Blu-Ray burner, even as BTO, I'll be unimpressed. This would be the perfect opportunity for Apple to update FCP w/ the ability to burn Blu-Ray and also release some new pro (read: matte) displays and top it off w/ a new bit-kicking MP w/ BD burner.

I know Jobs said BD is a "whole bag of hurt," or whatever, but Apple has to understand that people want the ability to not only edit their video in HD but also to burn it onto HD media as well. FCP and FCX are getting a little long in the tooth. FCP, especially. It's what two years old now w/ no major update.
 
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PowerPaw

macrumors member
Jan 15, 2009
88
0
Amen. A mid-range tower could straddle the power-user iMac market (where the 8800GS simply can't cut it for stuff like gaming because it has to drive the much higher resolution 24" display) and the Pro customer who's having to cut back because of more expensive times.

Come on Apple - so many people want a midrange tower Mac with some upgrade options! Do it already!!

What would you be expecting to see in this tower that the single CPU version of the Mac Pro offers at the lower cost of $2,299.00? Admittedly its $100 more than the 24" iMac... I would say it would need a lower price point still and perhaps that is where the i7 could come in perhaps as soon as we see the prices for these CPUs go down some more.
 
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