Apple releases new Mac Pro with eight processor cores

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Just one week before the start of Macworld Conference & Expo in San Francisco, Apple has released an update for its high-end Mac Pro desktop.

The new Mac Pro combines two of Intel’s new 45 nanometer Quad-Core Xeon 5400 processors running up to 3.2 GHz, new graphics and up to 4TB of internal storage. Prices start at $2,799.

“This is a real dream machine for our power users,” David Moody, Apple’s vice president of worldwide Mac product marketing, told Macworld. “We are seeing two times the performance of our previous product.”

The Mac Pro features 12MB of L2 cache per processor, dual-independent 1600 MHz front side buses and up to 32GB of 800 MHz DDR2 ECC FB-DIMM memory. According to Apple, the new Mac Pro achieves a 61 percent increase in memory throughput.

The Mac Pro comes standard with the ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT graphics card with 256MB of video memory. The systems also include a new PCI Express 2.0 graphics slot that delivers up to double the bandwidth compared to the previous generation, the company said.

With the new PCI Express, the Mac Pro supports the latest generation of graphics cards from NVIDIA, such as the NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT with 512MB of video memory, or the NVIDIA Quadro FX 5600 with 1.5GB of video memory and a 3D stereo port for stereo-in-a-window applications.

With support for up to four graphics cards, the new Mac Pro can drive up to eight 30-inch displays at once for advanced visualization and large display walls.

For storage, the Mac Pro has four internal drive bays allowing up to 4TB. The systems also have five USB 2.0, two FireWire 400, two FireWire 800, optical and analog audio in and out, dual Gigabit Ethernet ports and a headphone jack.

The new Mac Pro is available immediately.

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