Apple intros Mac Pro with 12 processing cores

The new Mac Pro, due in August, uses quad-core and 6-core Intel Xeon processors with speeds up to 3.33GHz.

Apple's Mac Pro with LED Cinema Display
Apple's Mac Pro with LED Cinema Display. Apple

In addition to releasing updated iMacs and the Magic Trackpad, Apple on Tuesday refreshed its high-end Mac Pro, giving it up to 12 processing cores.

The new Mac Pro uses quad-core and 6-core Intel Xeon processors with speeds up to 3.33GHz. According to Apple, these machines use a single-die design, so they can share 12MB of L3 cache, further improving speed.

The Mac Pro also features Turbo Boost, a process to dynamically boost processor speeds up to 3.6GHz, and Hyper-Threading to create up to 24 virtual cores. The Mac Pro uses the ATI Radeon HD 5770 graphics processor with 1GB of memory, although you can add the faster ATI Radeon HD 5870 as a build-to-order option.

Mac Pro users can now order solid-state drives for performance. In fact, users can install up to four 512GB SSDs in a single Mac Pro. Apple says these drives provide up to twice the performance as a standard mechanical disk drive.

The new quad-core Mac Pro starts at $2,499 for a 2.8GHz quad-core Intel Xeon W3530 processor and goes up to $3.499 for an 8-core with two 2.4 GHz quad-core Intel Xeon E5620 processors.

The Mac Pro will ship in August, according to Apple.

Compared to the old Mac Pro
Apple's last-generation Mac Pro came in two configurations: a quad-core and an 8-Core.

The first had one 2.66GHz quad-core Intel Xeon "Nehalem" processor, 3GB of RAM, a 640GB hard drive, 18x SuperDrive and the Nvidia GeForce GT 120 with 512MB. This Mac Pro cost $2,499.

The high-end 8-core Mac Pro model had two 2.26GHz quad-core Nehalem processors, 6GB of RAM, a 640GB hard drive, an 18x SuperDrive, and the Nvidia GeForce GT 120 with 512MB. This Mac Pro cost $3,299.

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