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The Apple Mac Pro 8-Core is a powerful desktop computer offered by Apple that is designed to be extremely customizable.

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Pros

extremely powerful

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two quad-core processors

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highly customizable

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upgraded processors with on-chip memory controllers increases system memory bandwidth

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runs OSX (but can also run any other OS as well)

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upgraded to DDR3 memory

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Cons

extremely expensive

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minor hardware revision - design of the system remains the same

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The Apple Mac Pro 8-Core is a powerful desktop computer offered by Apple that is designed to be extremely customizable. This computer is powered by two Quad-Core Intel Xeon "Nahalem" processors making this a much faster computer than previous models.  To eliminate memory bottlenecks, each processor features an integrated memory controller, which gives faster access to data stored in memory reducing latency by up to 40%. This Mac Pro introduces Turbo Boost, which automatically boosts the processor clock speed based on the work load, and can shut off idle cores when not used, simultaneously increasing the speed of active ones. Hyper-Threading also allows two threads to run simultaneously on each core, giving the 8-core Mac Pro 16 virtual cores that are recognized by Mac OS X.

QuickPath Interconnect is a bidirectional, point-to-point connection giving the processors quick access to the disk, I/O and other subsystems, as well as allows data to travel from processor to processor without having to travel to the I/O hub first, which boosts the performance accross the board. While this is the most powerful Mac to date, the advancements in power management allow it to run on less energy when idle making this a powerfull, and energy efficient machine.

Graphic cards

The Mac Pro has two options for graphics cards:

  1. NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 with 512MB of GDDR3 memory, PCI Express 2.0, one Mini DisplayPort, and one dual-link DVI port
  2. ATI Radeon HD 4870 with 512MB of GDDR5 memory, PCI Express 2.0, one Mini DisplayPort, and one dual-link DVI port.
  • Multiple graphics card configurations available with two, three, or four NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 cards
  • Support for up to eight 30-inch displays
  • Support for digital resolutions up to 2560 by 1600 pixels
  • Support for analog resolutions up to 2048 by 1536 pixels
Tech Specs
  • Two 2.26GHz, 2.66GHz, or 2.93GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5500 series processors
  • 8MB of fully shared L3 cache per processor
  • Integrated memory controller
  • Turbo Boost dynamic performance (up to 3.33GHz on 8-core 2.93GHz system)
  • Hyper-Threading technology for up to 16 virtual cores
  • 128-bit SSE4 SIMD engine
  • 64-bit data paths and registers
  • Optimized for energy efficiency
  • 1066MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM
  • Eight memory slots (four per processor) supporting up to 32GB of main memory using 1GB, 2GB, or 4GB DIMMs
  • Four 3.5-inch cable-free, direct-attach hard drive bays with built-in independent 3Gb/s Serial ATA channels; four internal hard drive carriers included
  • Up to 4TB of internal storage3 in hard drive bays 1 through 4 using hard drives
  • Optional Mac Pro RAID Card with 512MB cache and 72-hour cache battery backup
  • 18x SuperDrive with double-layer support (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
  • One open optical drive bay for optional second SuperDrive
  • Three open full-length PCI Express expansion slots
  • All slots provide mechanical support for 16-lane cards
  • 300W combined maximum for all PCI Express slots
  • Height: 20.1 inches (51.1 cm)
  • Width: 8.1 inches (20.6 cm)
  • Depth: 18.7 inches (47.5 cm)
  • Weight (standard configuration): 41.2 pounds (18.7 kg)
Connections and audio
  • Four FireWire 800 ports (two on front panel, two on back panel)
  • Five USB 2.0 ports (two on front panel, three on back panel)
  • Two USB 2.0 ports on included keyboard
  • Front-panel headphone minijack and internal speaker
  • Optical digital audio input and output TOSLINK ports
  • Analog stereo line-level input and output minijacks
Software
  • Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard (includes iTunes, Time Machine, Quick Look, Spaces, Spotlight, Dashboard, Mail, iChat, Safari, Address Book, QuickTime, iCal, DVD Player, Photo Booth, Front Row, Xcode Developer Tools)
  • iLife ’09 (includes iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, iWeb, and GarageBand)
     
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