In its keynote this morning, Apple teased its next-generation Mac Pro, due out later this year. Based on Ivy Bridge E, the new system will ship with two AMD FirePro GPUs with up to 4096 SPs and capable of delivering 7 TFLOPS of peak FP performance. 

We got a close look at the chassis, which is 1/8 the size of the current Mac Pro. You lose any hope for internal expansion, but Apple outfitted the machine with three Falcon Ridge Thunderbolt 2 controllers to enable expansion via external storage and external Thunderbolt 2 expansion chassis options. Apple won't make any of its own Thunderbolt 2 expansion chassis, but you can expect that others will fill that void. With 20Gbps up/down on Thunderbolt 2, you should have enough bandwidth for any PCIe expansion.

Internally there are four DDR3 memory slots, as well as what looks like a proprietary PCIe SSD connector (I don't think it's M.2 unfortunately). Both GPUs are technically removable, but at least one is mounted as the same card as the PCIe SSD. Apple is putting every single PCIe lane available to use on the new Mac Pro. 

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  • Carl Bicknell - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    It only supports 1 Xeon CPU.
    That's a desktop, not a workstation.

    My current Dell Precision is more powerful than this.
    Reply
  • xinthius - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    12 Cores, it supports dual Xeons. Reply
  • iamthatguy - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    That's what they say, but I seriously cannot see where the second socket it. It's really confusing.

    On their website (http://www.apple.com/mac-pro/) on the exploded view about the single heatsink, there is clearly one CPU and two GPU's.

    It really looks like it can only fit one socket.
    Reply
  • fteoath64 - Monday, June 24, 2013 - link

    It is possible and it means REPLACING a complete board off this machine. You can see that there are really two large boards and a smaller power-supply board in the triangular formation. Smaller bits like ram runs off the main board. The cpu seems "bolted" to the main board so it will be very expensive. ie buy 1/3 of a new machine rather than a new cpu. The new IVB Xeons they are using has 12 cores with hypertreading, so Apple records this is enough for this "workstation" so liken as a desktop really considering the design to be placed on a table rather than on a floor. Reply
  • jamyryals - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    It's 12 Cores in one socket. The IVB-E has a 12 Core variant. Reply
  • tipoo - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    Nope, IVB-E supports 12 core chips and this only has one socket for the processor, the two other faces are the two GPUs. Reply
  • psyq321 - Wednesday, June 12, 2013 - link

    Like other people say, it is going to be a single-socket Ivy Bridge EP (Xeon E5 2600 v2).

    Most probably they will use one of the lower-TDP ones.
    Reply
  • Carl Bicknell - Wednesday, June 12, 2013 - link

    If they use one of the lower TDP ones then that's even worse, they will get well left behind by companies fitting their workstations with dual E5 v2 Xeons for 24 cores running well over 3 Ghz. Meanwhile R2-D2 here will hobble along with 12 cores probably at 2.5 - 3GHz.

    What they've basically done is built a very fancy Mac Mini. That's great, but it's not a Mac Pro.
    They should have also made a larger version with much greater hardware possibilities of multiple CPUs, multiple harddrives, optical drives etc etc.
    Reply
  • GotThumbs - Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - link

    It looks very cool. Apple always does have great visual designs in their products, but I just don't like proprietary designs. As someone who has built every computer I've owned since my first 486 DX system, I'll pass on owning one of these. It will be interesting to see how many people buy it without really needing that kind of computing power. Reply
  • fteoath64 - Monday, June 24, 2013 - link

    Mine was 286-8Mhz!. Actually started with the original 8088 clone machines that are large desktop cases with twin floppy drives. And those form factors have not changed much in over 2.5 decades!. Many will buy the machine just because they "think" they are up for an upgrade and it seems the only option for them. There are few people who would proper research the options available to them. Reply

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