What’s the most powerful Mac that money can buy? It’s the biggest Mac in the line, uses the most power, weighs about the same as a SmartCar, is crazy expandable, and is about as fast as a Mac mini.
Say what? Yes, friends and neighbors, Apple’s Mac Pro is the black sheep of the Mac family, the only remaining relative to computers of the 1990s, the one Mac that gets little love and less attention.
Wherefore Art Though, MacPro Innovation?
There once was a time when Mac users who thought about power, thought about the Mac Pro. What’s not to like about a Mac that can power up 12 cores of Intel Inside CPUs?
As Macs go, the Mac Pro is a behemoth, a throwback to the Neanderthal era of power computing, where extra hard disk drives, heat spewing graphic cards, and rows of RAM were the norm.
Those days are gone. Users of the tower line of computing have moved into mobility land. The most popular Macs are notebooks, the iMac is but a shadow of its former self (literally; slimmer and faster than ever).
Apple’s Mac Pro hasn’t been updated in years; an eternity in technological years. In some ways, the Mac Pro remains Apple’s most powerful Mac. It can handle up to 64-GB of RAM, up to 8 TB of storage, multiple graphic cards, and up to 12 cores of Intel processing power.
A single quad-core Mac Pro starts at $2,500 with 6GB of RAM, a single TB of storage, and a SuperDrive. Maxed out with RAM, fast SSD storage, dual graphics cards and dual displays, and the Mac Pro tips the scale at over $14,000.
Who buys this Mac Pro monster? Apple claims to have a steady Mac Pro business, and has promised an upgrade of sorts in 2013, but clearly this Mac tower is a dinosaur. A fast dinosaur, but a relic nonetheless, much loved by the video and audio recording industry still, but less so by Photoshop and Illustrator users who have flocked to the 27-inch, quad-core iMac models for far less money.
The question is this. Will Apple finally put the Mac Pro to rest? Or, does Apple have something special in mind for the most expensive, most powerful, and now the heaviest Mac (40 pounds of precision aluminum)?
The current line of Mac Pro, quite expandable by iMac standards, still doesn’t have Thunderbolt, and no Blueray. Some users report that both the latest iMac and MacBook Pro models perform many tasks as fast or faster than a Mac Pro (12 cores need special applications).
Even the diminutive Mac mini has a server model configuration, with OS X Server, further negating the need for a seemingly steam powered Mac Pro. Apple should either kill the Mac Pro where it stands, or bring it further into the 21st century; more power, lighter frame, lower price.