91

Small, fast and in a league of its own

91

It's hard to say if the Mac Pro is pricey, per se, given that there's nothing else quite like it. There are plenty of Windows-based workstations, certainly, but none are quite this small or quite this portable (many aren't quite this quiet, either). And if you're a creative professional already hooked into Mac-only apps like Final Cut Pro, this is really your only choice: The new Mac Pro is a serious improvement over the old model in every way, and is likely worth the upgrade. So, while $2,999 (let alone $10,000) is indeed a big investment, it's well worth it for people who live and die by their workstation, and for whom (rendering) time is money.

Critic reviews

8.8
9 reviews
  • Speed and features
    9.2
  • Design and form factor
    8.9
  • Expandability
    6.1
  • Noise
    9.2
  • Size and weight
    9.0
  • Power consumption

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User reviews

9.0
1 review
  • Speed and features
    10
  • Design and form factor
    10
  • Expandability
    6.0
  • Noise
    10
  • Size and weight
    10
  • Power consumption
    8.0
9.0
Engadget Dec 23, 2013

There isn't another computer we know of that's this powerful and also this compact. With a starting price of $2,999, going all the way up to nearly $10,000, it's quite pricey, but for videographers, photographers, animators and other creative professionals, it could be well worth the investment.

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9.0
CNET Dec 20, 2013

... featuring a design looks fantastic and offers genuine breakthrough advantages. But, consumer-level Apple enthusiasts should note that this product isn't specifically targeted at them and DIY upgraders will lament the loss of traditional desktop tower flexibility.

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9.0
AnandTech Dec 31, 2013

All of that being said, I don’t expect there to be a lot of cross shopping between DIY builders and those looking for a Mac Pro.

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8.0
Wired Jan 6, 2014

... for those compiling thousands of lines of code a day, manipulating HD or 4K video streams, or constantly rendering CPU-intensive animations or images, this shiny cylinder of power has come from the future to save you time.

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8.0
Macworld Mar 14, 2014

For pros that use apps that take advantage of multiple processing cores, the Mac Pro is a time-saver, but is probably overkill for everyday tasks. The $2999 Mac Pro is a real step up from its predecessor.

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8.0
SlashGear Dec 29, 2013

It's hard not to be wowed by the Mac Pro. Apple has created a workstation that breaks new ground in design, delivers power in excess of PCs several times its size, and doesn't leave your office sounding like a turbine hall in the process.

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10
TrustedReviews Jan 30, 2014

Apple has redefined what a workstation can be with the Mac Pro. It's not for everyone, but it delivers handsomely on what it sets out to do and sets a new standard for what's possible in a desktop computer.

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9.0
The Verge Dec 23, 2013

The day-to-day performance is similar enough to that of the iMac that I'd have a difficult time convincing my boss to spend double the money on this computer, plus a monitor, plus the Thunderbolt peripherals I'd need to make it a viable solution.

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First Looks

product preview
Engadget Jun 10, 2013

All we know for now is that it'll make its debut "later this year," boasting four USB sockets, six Thunderbolt 2 ports, a full-size HDMI connector, a 3.5mm headphone port and a pair of gigabit Ethernet ports. And yes, it's almost certainly a fingerprint magnet.

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Engadget Dec 19, 2013

It also looks less black than it does on Apple's site -- more like the "Space Gray" that it actually is. As it happens, that case is easy to unlock and slip off, on the rare occasion that you want to replace the RAM, storage or one of the GPUs. Hopefully, of course, you won't need to do this often.

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TechCrunch Jun 10, 2013

The most impressive part of the Mac Pro might be how much Apple’s engineers managed to cram into such a small package. There are not one, not two, but six Thunderbolt 2 outputs, which adds tons of external expandability, as well as two FireWire 800 ports, audio in and out, HDMI and Ethernet.

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PC Mag Jun 11, 2013

Set into a slim, glowing panel are a half dozen Thunderbolt 2 ports and four USB 3.0 ports, along with an HDMI output and two Gigabit Ethernet ports. Internally, the Mac pro is equipped with 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. The entire top of the Mac Pro is a handle for easy portability.

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TechCrunch Oct 22, 2013

Other than the demo situations, it’s hard to say a whole lot about the performance of the devices, so we’ll have to wait until we get a review unit in hand to make any statements about the innards. But the industrial design is certainly striking.

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PC Mag Oct 23, 2013

The system is dead quiet, especially at idle. Even under load, streaming 16 4K HD video streams, we couldn't hear the system over the ambient room noise, which was admittedly lively in the demo room. Still, this system will appeal to video and music professionals who need to work in a quiet studio.

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CNET Dec 19, 2013

It's a stretch to say this is a computer for casual consumers, but the starting price isn't more than you'd pay for a similarly configured Windows PC and the radically different design is cool enough to appeal to any design enthusiast who wants nothing but the best-looking, best-performing products.

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Macworld Dec 19, 2013

Even during the 4K video workout it seemed fairly cool to the touch. Much of the warmth seems to be quite effectively transmitted to the central core and then blown out the top.

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SlashGear Jun 10, 2013

The design has evolved from “another desktop” to something reminiscent of the unusual aesthetic of the old Power Mac G4 Cube. A completely different shape, of course, but approaching design in such an offbeat way that it’s eye-catching and engaging in a way a PC workstation seldom manages.

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PC World Australia Jun 12, 2013

Given that the current Mac Pro looks essentially the same as the 2003 Power Mac G5, any new design would stand out, but the new Mac Pro's design is dramatically--nay, shockingly--different. Instead of the traditional blocky "cheese grater" tower, the 2013 Mac Pro takes the shape of a black cylinder.

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Washington Post Oct 22, 2013

Apple is happy to show off the raw computing power of this machine, which in the demo was running to 4K displays of video editing software without a stutter. The cylindrical shape of the Mac Pro is certainly a head-turner, even if people do joke that it looks like a trash can.

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SlashGear Oct 22, 2013

It’s power that Apple is pushing with the Mac Pro 2013, and the new desktop promises that in spades. Apple was showing simultaneous multi-angle rendering of 4K resolution video in Final Cut Pro, across two different 4K displays, and as far as we could tell it was hiccup-free.

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The Guardian Oct 23, 2013

Apple's new tower desktop computer is touted as their most powerful retail computer to date. It supports up to three 4K ultra high-definition displays, with powerful twin-graphics cards and processors. The new model is 70% more energy efficient and quiet even with high-speed flash storage.

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SlashGear Dec 20, 2013

While the new Mac Pro may first earn envious glances, it's the power not the aesthetics that need to be its legacy.

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TechRadar Oct 23, 2013

We clicked and poked our way around the version of OS X loaded on our demo model and, perhaps unsurprisingly, failed to detect even slight lag when opening and closing apps.

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AppleInsider Oct 24, 2013

In addition to a fast, multiple core Intel CPU, the Mac Pro makes dedicated use of one GPU for driving video displays while the second is reserved for computing, from audio and graphics processing to scientific number crunching or 3D rendering.

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AppleInsider Oct 24, 2013

Mounted upright, this allows a relatively slow fan mounted on top to pull air up through the thermal core and evacuate it out the top, assisted by the natural upward thermal convection.

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The Verge Dec 19, 2013

It cuts a striking figure, despite its relatively small stature. It's also incredibly dense, far heavier than I expected. Ten inches tall, 6 inches around, and about weighing in at around 11 pounds, it's definitely meant to be held by its bottom instead of its top lip.

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T3 Dec 20, 2013

Yet while we reckon the Mac Pro will attract some mainstream interest among the not-unwealthy due to its eye-catching looks, compact build and ease of use, this is not a Mac Mini – it's a professional machine.

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TechRadar Dec 20, 2013

If you're thinking this Mac is too expensive, you're thinking about it in the wrong way. It's a completely different proposition than an iMac or Mac mini. This is a high end workstation for serious power computing and applications such as media processing and editing.

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IT Pro Portal Oct 23, 2013

The system is dead quiet, especially at idle. Even under load, streaming sixteen 4K video streams, we couldn't hear the system over the ambient room noise, which was admittedly lively in the demo room.

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Stuff Oct 22, 2013

It’s an astonishing example of the future of the desktop PC - and a design so radical it’s hard to think of any other firm that would come up with it.

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9.0
nnieman nnieman

It's a lot smaller than I expected and looks beautiful on my desk. It's also virtually silent. They only time I ever hear it is when I'm exporting videos from Premiere Pro and After Effects. It's also blazing fast. I get bootup times of 6-7 seconds. I'm very happy with it

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How it stacks up

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