Apple brings ‘Nehalem’ to Mac Pro line

Mac Pro

Apple has introduced new Mac Pro workstations featuring Intel's Nehalam' Xeon CPUs, claiming they offer double the performance over the previous generation.

This makes the new Mac Pro the first commercially available systems to feature Intel's server-focused Xeon Nehalem.

A choice of Xeon processors is on offer at either 2.66GHz or 2.93Ghz speeds. These are available in single or dual socket configurations to make quad-core or eight-core setups. The Nehalem-based Xeons feature an integrated memory controller, which supports up to three channels of 1,066MHz DDR3 ECC memory, providing support for up to 32GB.

Graphics are provided by a Nvidia GeForce GT 120 with 512MB of memory. The systems feature both a mini DisplayPort connector and a dual-link DVI ports, enabling 30-in displays to be connected.

Up to four 4TB of storage is catered for and this can be configured in RAID 0, 1, 5 and 0+1 configurations.

The systems are available on a build-to-order status from next week and start at 1,899 for the quad-core and 2,499 for the eight-core.

"The new Mac Pro is a significant upgrade and starts at $300 less than before," Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing said in a statement.

Apple has also updated its popular consumer iMac line, and its slightly less popular Mac mini. It has not drawn much attention to these upgrades, however, which are not even featured on the front of the UK Apple site.

The iMac now features Core 2 Duo processors up to 3.06GHz, and starts at 950 for the 2.66GHz version. The 24in display version will set you back 1,200. All feature at least 1TB of storage and double the previous standard memory.

Meanwhile, the Mac mini now sports the same GeForce 9400M graphics chip that Apple recently introduced with its MacBooks.

The company said that the Mac mini is now the world's most efficient desktop computer, consuming less than 13 watts when idle, which is around 10 times less than the average machine.

The mini now offers a 2GHz Core 2 Duo, up to 4GB of RAM, 320GB hard disk, five USB ports and FireWire 800.

Benny Har-Even

Benny Har-Even is a twenty-year stalwart of technology journalism who is passionate about all areas of the industry, but telecoms and mobile and home entertainment are among his chief interests. He has written for many of the leading tech publications in the UK, such as PC Pro and Wired, and previously held the position of technology editor at ITPro before regularly contributing as a freelancer.

Known affectionately as a ‘geek’ to his friends, his passion has seen him land opportunities to speak about technology on BBC television broadcasts, as well as a number of speaking engagements at industry events.