Apple’s new Mac Pro would rank as the 8th most powerful supercomputer on planet Earth in 2003

Apple’s newly unveiled Mac Pro, at just 9.9 inches tall with a diameter of just 6.6 inches — smaller than most subwoofers — offers up to 7 teraflops of computing power.

10 years ago this month, if it existed, Apple’s new Mac Pro would have been the eighth most powerful supercomputer on the entire planet, beating out the DOE/SC/Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s supercomputer which peaked at 6.16 teraflops.

2003 wasn’t that long ago. Imagine, the world’s 8th most powerful supercomputer sitting comfortably on your desk!

What will Apple have to offer 10 years from now?

Up to 7 teraflops sitting comfortably on your wrist?

Apple's next generation Mac Pro
Apple’s next generation Mac Pro


Apple's next generation Mac Pro
Apple’s next generation Mac Pro

The next generation Mac Pro will be available later this year. To learn more, visit

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Chas” for the heads up.]


          1. Very happy to see Apple are still moving forward with 4K support. I think that we are getting tiny hints that we could see a fully fledged iTV within the next year or two. 4K support for monitors and iOS now supports third party game controllers – surely this is a move to take the living room.

          1. 4K TV sets? Over expensive overkill much?

            There is no point in having a higher resolution on your TV than your retina can actually resolve. Maybe if you want to turn your living room into a theatre with a gigantic TV. That would be kewl!

            1. It’s not resolution that’s the problem. It’s the content. We’re just getting over the switch to 720/1080.

              How are any consumers going to get any 4K content? Not over broadcast channels: ATSC only goes up to 1080p, and zero channels are even broadcasting *that* yet. Not on Blu-Ray: the standard only goes up to 1080p so far (though they’re working on ways to extend it, which will likely involve waiting for everybody to buy a new Blu-Ray player). Not over the internet: most people don’t have the bandwidth for it, nor an HTPC that supports 4K video output. Not over cable: most set-top boxes don’t support 4K video output, and there’s no channels broadcasting it yet, anyway.

              The way 4K is going to arrive is if Sony/Microsoft push 4K games/updates to their latest consoles, which millions of people already have in their living rooms.

            2. Adding to my usual complaints about shoving 4K into the consumer space:

              Q: WHERE is the US Internet going to get the BANDWIDTH for 4K? Where I live, which is a hub of the Internet with well known good bandwidth, I run into bandwidth traffic jams every single day. There are times it is impossible to adequately stream a 480p video off YouTube, let alone 720p. Totally forget about 1080p.

              A: NO WHERE. NONE of the parasitic ISPs that I know of are investing a cent into new bandwidth. Instead, their bad attitude is turning to THROTTLING.

              IOW: 4K has not-a-prayer for adequate Internet streaming. Give up on that dream, not until such time as the parasite ISPs are overthrown.

        1. If you’d quit that bad habit of responding to yourself, maybe you’d receive more valuable input. Talking to yourself in a mirror doesn’t prepare you for a confrontation with the ravenous jackals that patrol these territories. Then again, you may identify with them, in which case, never mind. In any case, think twice before denigrating women. We too understand war, love, and chess. We differ in that we don’t care who earns bragging rights, only who survives.

    1. Reminds me of the cube, hopefully it doesn’t go the same way the cube did! I think the cube died because it was advertised with the monitor for $1799 or whatever it was and then you go to buy one and find out the monitor didn’t come with it. In those days you usually got a package deal.

      I’m impressed and then I’m not. Not sure what to think! I was hoping for a rack mountable version of something with internal storage of 8 drives, etc. Can’t do much with this thing, guess its Mac Mini all the way now with not redundant power, NIC, etc.

      1. Why in the world would you think Apple would make the Mac Pro rack mountable with 8 bays for internal storage?!? That is the complete opposite of everything Apple has done with hardware design over the past 10 years.

        1. Yes 1990s thinking too such a computer would fail embarrassingly. This will be for power players only in various specialisations, most design studios haven’t needed such a machine for a decade. Things change and this is a change for the better, the big box concept is dead some just don’t see it yet.

    1. That was Rpeak, not Rmax.

      Even if the new Pro’s putative 7Tflop performance is Rpeak, it’s still frighteningly impressive.

      I think Apple have just given us more cowbell 🙂


        1. I still use 3 of them to run old scientific research equipment that need boards that won’t work in later machines. Maxed out the RAM, new larger drives, and OS X Tiger is still an excellent OS.

  1. It can drive “4K” displays (up to three of them). Apple doesn’t have such a display. So there is obviously going to be a new high-end display product coming from Apple “later this year.”

    NOTE: The current 27-inch cinema “only” has horizontal pixel count of 2560 (2.5K).

    1. Not necessarily.

      However, ASUS have announced or are shipping a 4K display for $5000 which is a chunk of change. Presumably there are other professional visualisation solutions, like projectors, that will do 4K natively and using a videowall processor on each channel would enable you to drive three separate walls of 3×3 16:9 displays with each display running 1280×720.

      If you have $500K knocking around, you could order three of Panasonic’s 4K2K 150″ plasma displays.

  2. To paraphrase Mark Twain, “The reports of Apple’s death have been greatly exaggerated.”

    What I saw today was Apple firing on all cylinders, even (or maybe especially) without Scott Forstall. Federighi seems to be a huge improvement in the role. I especially loved Schiller’s side comment, “Can’t innovate any more, my ass!”

    Apple is going to be just fine.

    1. I liked all the anti- “skeuomorphism” references, like “we completely ran out of green felt and wood… this must be good for the environment.” Or the “amazement” that iCal pages didn’t fall off, when they removed the bindings. Craig Federighi was probably the best presenter this time.

      1. I agree… one can replace Steve Jobs. Something about his presentations just brought you in and amazed you. Today Craig did an excellent job and I think he needs to be on stage more at these events. The comedy added some humor that Jobs did once in a while. Tim is great and doing a great job, but boring to listen too.

        1. Agreed. Craig seemed to really enjoy his time on stage, and he played off the audience very well. Eddy Cue was obviously uncomfortable and ready to get off the stage.

    1. We don’t even know the prices yet and even the entry level before was expensive! Still have Ram, HD, Keyboard/Mouse and Applecare options to choose. Who knows if you will be able to pick a different processor, I would assume so, but who knows. Not much different than before besides internal storage is lacking severely!

      1. The sort of people who will buy the new Mac Pro are power user professionals that work in hd video and post production.

        These companies store all their work on servers/raid arrays not on the hard drive.

        Lack of hard drive space isn’t an issue if your in the desired target market for this mac, if it is then your not the customer for this machine.

      1. Exactly! If you’re not using your Mac as your primary source of income, you don’t need a Mac Pro and haven’t for quite some time. I upgraded to a Mac mini earlier this year. It’s the most powerful computer I’ve ever owned, and I carried it home in one hand. (My first Mac in 2001 barely fit in my little car.)

        This Mac Pro is mind-blowing, but I’d never buy one. It would be like using a thermonuclear warhead to kill ants.

        So if you’re not a professional, don’t worry about how much this thing is going to cost. You don’t f***ing need one! (Unless you feel inadequate if you don’t own the fastest Mac on the market.)


  3. Two corrections:
    1) 7 TGLOPS references to 32-bit calculations, not 64-bit ones which are required for Top-500 calculations measurements;

    2) 7 TFLOPS only include videocard; 12-core Intel CPU is not included in the count.

  4. Looks like a Black Trashcan. I wonder how long before someone tosses a was of paper in the top.

    I can appreciate the engineering work that went in, but it is in no way a Mac Pro other than in name. Call it anything that you will other than a Mac Pro. I cannot wait till pictures start popping up with a sea of cables like an Octopus.

      1. It’s that vision thing and Apple does not have it since one Steven Paul Jobs left the building. Wish it were not so, but Apple is becoming the antithesis of the Think Different company.

        1. Yeah, yeah, we all get it. Jobs was Apple, Apple is dead. What the hell do you want? If this is truly what you think, what do you accomplish by kvetching and moaning on this website? Go somewhere else, invest in Windows or Android or Linux and leave Apple to die in peace. In the meantime, we’re all going to be enjoying the hell out of our iPhones with iOS 7.


    1. Obviously you have no idea what a pro’s workstation can look like now. My cables are all tied up and tubed but it still looks like an octopus war behind and underneath. Too many raids, drives, monitors (broadcast and computer), scopes, input devices, microphones, near field monitors, breakout boxes, mixers, decks, switchers, etc. to count.

      This new form factor changes little. Most work goes directly to an external raid. This is actually closer to the way most pros I know in medium to large shops already operate. It all looks nice and tidy on the surface. The complicated tangle of cables and connections are just better hidden, labelled and organized than the average consumer might be used to.

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