Apple Unveils new 12 core processor Mac Pro! Your new audio workhorse is here!
(ctargia | Posted 2010-08-12)
Here it is hardware junkies! The new Mac Pros are here with tons of horsepower for loading dozens of tracks and effects into your audio timelines without having to worry about lag! If you have an extra 5 grand lieing around waiting for that next tech innovation for an upgrade, it seems to be here. Thats right 12 cores! With two of Intel's new 6 core Xeon “Westmere” processors, you can max out the new Mac Pros with 12 2.93GHz cores, 24 if you include the virtual cores due to hyper-threading. That's right this new cores are already able to do hyper-threading! But these innovations do not come with out a price, the baseline 12-core Mac Pro's start out at a hefty $4,999. And that is with only 6 gigabytes of ram and one 1TB hard drive.
I was also surprised that apple does not offer any sound cards to come with the system. It is easy enough to install your own PCI-E sound card but for a pro audio tech, onboard sound just is not enough. I would have expect Apple to include an audio card upgrade to accommodate our industry.
Also Apple's Hard drives and memory are astronomically priced. You are much better off buying the base amount of Ram and HDDs and buying online from a store like Newegg.com or OCW.com new Mac Compatible Hard drives and/or ram for half the cost. They are also offering solid-state drives, which are lighting fast, but in my opinion not anywhere close to being worth the price for what you pay. $1,250.00 for ONE 512GB solid state drive? No thanks, although, if you have a load of cash in your pocket you can get some blindly fast speed hooking up 4 of those drives on a Raid 0; solid state drives are much more reliable so a raid 0 with 4 drives would be much less risky. And the Read/Write speeds would be almost if not 1000mb/s. That will make playing with dozens of tracks of uncompressed 24-bit audio a breeze wouldn't it?
But enough of my techie fantasies. The minimum speced new gen Mac Pro starts at $2,499.00. For basic and most pro audio editing and production that should be exceded your needs. But for those of you who like to work with the best, here is the official release from apple:
A towering achievement in power.
The new Mac Pro delivers more processing power, more graphics performance, and more storage options. It’s the world’s newest superpower.
New Intel Xeon processors deliver up to 12 cores of processing power.
Powerful new graphics cards give you even faster graphics performance.
Storage and RAID
Install up to four 1TB or 2TB hard drives or 512GB solid-state drives.
Mac OS X
The world’s most advanced OS gets the most from your Mac Pro.
Choose your cores: 4, 6, 8, or 12.
The new Mac Pro offers two advanced processor options from Intel. The Quad-Core Intel Xeon “Nehalem” processor is available in a single-processor, quad-core configuration at speeds up to 3.2GHz. For even greater speed and power, choose the “Westmere” series, Intel’s next-generation processor based on its latest 32-nm process technology. ”Westmere” is available in both quad-core and 6-core versions, and the Mac Pro comes with either one or two processors. Which means that you can have a 6-core Mac Pro at 3.33GHz, an 8-core system at 2.4GHz, or, to max out your performance, a 12-core system at up to 2.93GHz.
The single-die advantage.
Many multicore processors are composed of two separate dies, which means some cached data has to travel outside the processor to get from core to core. That’s an inefficient way to access information. Enter the Quad-Core and 6-Core Intel Xeon processors. Their single-die, 64-bit architecture makes 8MB or 12MB of fully shared L3 cache readily available to each of the processor cores. The result is fast access to cache data and greater application performance. Combine that with the other technological advances and you get a Mac Pro that’s up to 1.5x faster than the previous generation.
Fast memory. And lots of it.
System memory is often connected to a processor through a separate I/O controller. But Intel Xeon “Nehalem” and “Westmere” processors feature an integrated memory controller. By connecting memory directly to the processor, the new Mac Pro processors have faster access to data stored in memory, and memory latency is reduced.
The integrated memory controller, along with fast DDR3 ECC SDRAM at either 1066MHz or 1333MHz, gives Mac Pro an increase in memory bandwidth over previous generations. More bandwidth allows for more data to be fed to the processor faster, helping each core spend its time processing data, not waiting for information to arrive. And Error Correction Code (ECC) corrects single-bit errors and detects multiple-bit errors automatically. That’s especially important in mission-critical and compute-intensive environments.
Power when (and where) you need it.
The Mac Pro features Turbo Boost, a dynamic performance technology that automatically boosts the processor clock speed based on workload. If you’re using an application that doesn’t need every core, Turbo Boost increases the speed of the active ones, up to 3.33GHz on a 12-core Mac Pro, and up to 3.6GHz on a 6-core system.
Up to 24 virtual cores.
The Intel Xeon processors support Hyper-Threading, which allows two threads to run simultaneously on each core. So, for example, a 12-core Mac Pro presents 24 virtual cores that are recognized by Mac OS X. Performance is enhanced because Hyper-Threading enables the processor to take better advantage of the execution resources available in each core.
Path of least resistance.
A bidirectional, point-to-point connection — called QuickPath Interconnect — gives the Intel Xeon processors quick access to the disk, I/O, and other Mac Pro subsystems. In dual-processor Mac Pro models, there’s a QuickPath Interconnect between the two processors as well. This connection acts as a direct pipeline, so processor-to-processor data doesn’t need to travel to the I/O hub first. It’s another way the Mac Pro boosts performance across the board.
The Mac Pro meets the stringent low power requirements set by the EPA, giving it ENERGY STAR qualification. ENERGY STAR 5.0 sets significantly higher efficiency limits for power supplies and aggressive limits for the computer’s typical annual power consumption.
Visit Apples website, for all the juicy tech specs!