Mac Pro rumours ahoy

Coming March 16?

A LOT OF people were disappointed by Apple’s last product announcement, as only a single product was unveiled. However, it seems like those that were waiting for new desktop machines from Apple might not have to wait that much longer, because the rumour mill is suggesting mid-March for some new Mac Pro action.

Hardmac have been supplied some leaked information that’s indicating that we’ll be seeing a Gulftown powered Mac Pro being announced by Mr Jobs, possibly on the 16th of March. However, they seem to be mixing up Xeon’s and Core i7’s so we’re not sure how solid this information is. The processor that’s mentioned in two different posts is the Core i7 980X, which is Intel’s upcoming six-core Gulftown based LGA-1366 Extreme Edition desktop chip.

Considering that this CPU will be priced at $999 or more, it’s unlikely that we’ll see this in the new Mac Pro. Even more so due to the fact that the Mac Pro is a dual socket system that accepts a pair of Intel 5500-series Xeon processors, hence it’s unlikely that Apple would consider using Core i7’s, despite the shared socket. However, we don’t doubt that Apple is eyeing Intel’s Gulftown based Xeon processors, since that’s the next logical step in the evolution of the Mac Pro.

So far anything else with regards to what will end up in the next generation of Apple’s Mac Pro hasn’t made it outside of Apple’s HQ. The beta release of Snow Leopard 10.6.3 doesn’t give away a lot of details either, although some tweaks have been done to various graphics drives for both ATI and Nvidia cards. However, Apple has killed support for 64-bit Intel drives in the upcoming release, which makes us wonder if Intel will be supporting Intel’s Core i3 and Core i5 processors with Integrated graphics or not.

Many Apple users are hoping for support for AMD’s ATI Radeon HD 5800 series of cards in the new Mac Pro, but for now that’s just a dream. It’s plausible that Apple will add SSD support as well, but again there’s no way of confirming this. All we can hope for is that the new Mac Pro will offer something a little bit more exciting that what the iPad did.S|A

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