Apple is using a custom connector for the SSD in the new Mac Pro

Malcolm Owen for AppleInsider:

The new Mac Pro is a highly modular computer, making it ripe for upgrades and on-site servicing. But, the connector used for the built-in storage suggests replacements may have to be bought from Apple directly.

The flash storage modules will be offered in four different setups: One 256GB module, two 512GB modules for 1TB of total capacity, two 1TB modules for 2TB of capacity, and two 2TB modules for 4TB of capacity. Storage is encrypted by the T2 Security Chip, similar to other Mac models.

The information Apple provides isn’t enough detail to confirm what kind of SSDs are being used by the Mac Pro, but what the image reveals is that it isn’t any standard SSD that is in use with other devices… It also doesn’t appear to be the same sort of connection Apple uses in some of its other products, as far as AppleInsider is aware.

MacDailyNews Take: Sounds like this is a security (T2) issue, but we’ll wait to see what the deal is when Apple ships Mac Pro units to customers.

46 Comments

      1. oooooh, Apple fanboy accuses another person of liking a company that supplies Apple with screens, chips, ssds, and memory.

        Patrick – you have perfectly demonstrated the shadow boxing fanboi douche personality that MDN treasures. No content, no discussion: all you offer is tech religious intolerance. Just as stupid as political bipolar disorder. How much are you paid per post?

    1. Get a clue. This a serious pro machine for major audio/video/3D production houses. They don’t care about nickels and dimes. They want the fastest machine money can buy. A top spec Mac Pro costing $50K will pay for itself in a few months by streamlining big budget workflows.

      1. True, its a top end machine … but that simply doesn’t excuse “Being Different, for Difference’s Sake” (and stockholder profits).

        Particularly when the Enterprise implications are that this use of a non-standard part is much more likely to mean that a failed Production Machine will be offline for days instead of hours.

        After all, the high cost of the Mac Pro is being rationalized by its fans by “time is money”, and this deliberately proprietary design choice is 100% contrary to that.

        1. I’ve already said, on announcement, that these machines are the return of SGI. They are needed by their niche, and are highly proprietary and more expensive that they need be if they abided by non-proprietary standards.

        1. Patrick, you have curiously avoided any attempt to inform everyone of the important facts you claim others haven’t grasped. Instead as usual you disparage anyone who identifies any downsides to Apple products. How much do they pay you, you condescending prick? It’s wannabe elitist people like you who drive a lot of people away from Apple.

  1. Pro machine.
    Insultingly small internal storage.
    No way to add any more without massive USB slowdown or stupid-expensive thunderbolt that still slows it down.

    A Playstation 4 can accept an internal ATA drive. Why does Apple have to cripple everything they do.

    1. Well, that didn’t take long. Whine, gripe, complain, threaten eternal loathing of Apple. With all of this angst, I wish that you would just buy a Dell. And, yes, I do own AAPL and I am willing to take a loss never to hear from you again.

      You don’t even know the reason behind this situation and you are already condemning Apple. With fans like these, who needs enemies?

      1. There is only one reason and it has nothing to so with security, performance or anything but control. There is no need for custom connector for any kind of encryption. It’s nonsense.

      1. Except that (a) that’s not the integral high performance boot drive, and (b) Promise hasn’t promised that their product is going to be ‘commodity’ level affordable.

        1. yeah, right, like anybody who buys this thing and needs more than 4 TB is going to be “commodity level”, GIVE ME BREAK this is a PRO machine, and if you think anyone who is buying 32 TB storage solutions is commodity, then you are surely delusional!

          1. Just a quick update to your cynicism:

            We’ve decided to extend the useful life of our legacy Mac Pro’s, which means to buy some hardware that had been being deferred.

            A purchase order went in yesterday for the test mule to be upgraded; its getting 16TB of new HDDs (2 * 8TB) to be internally installed (replacing legacy) … cost $521.

            By comparison, the equivalent +16TB upgrade we would have selected for an iMac Pro (or mini) would of course require a TB3 external box – – the 16TB (4 * 4TB) Promise Pegasus R4 at B&H is $1299.

            Of course, we’re all still waiting to see what the promised Promise product for the 2020 Mac Pro is really going to be, but the above’s “250% of commodity” benchmark is as good of an estimate as anything else for how much we’re going to get soaked.

            YMMV, but I’d much rather put that $800 into my own pocket as take-home pay.

    1. You’re not really up in these things are you?
      They’re around, standard connectors, and can be moved if needed from machine to machine. Nuff said….

      1. Careful, Patrick will go after you if you use the S word.

        In his warped little mind, only Apple can possibly make good hardware. Never mind Apple charges Manhattan prices for Korean parts. Actually, Apple gear today is almost exclusively Korean and Chinese parts. Intel processors are one major exception and MDN with its loyal fanbois has led a bizzaro anti-Intel campaign for years. So much for making America any better than it ever was. There must be a mental condition making them stupid brand fanbois on all things.

    2. PCI 4.0 SSD 5000MB/s…. Mac Pro didn’t even future proof themselve but choosing a 2 year old Intel chipset that only supports PCI 3.0.

  2. I won’t be buying the new Mac Pro so it really doesn’t matter much to me which type of connector they’re using. I thought it might have to do with the T2 chip security or that Apple uses Raid 0 on their SSDs for those high speed reads and writes. If I were a pro buying pro Apple systems, I would just buy it and be done with it. I figure I’d be able to make back the money at some point. It has been mentioned Apple offers such a low storage capacity because most production houses already have plenty of storage and the Mac Pro is also using 10GB ethernet which should allow the use of 256GB of storage for those who don’t want to pay for more storage.

    The new Mac Pro is not being made for consumers so I thought Apple is actually trying to accommodate production houses. It’s claimed how Apple sat down with those production experts and picked their brains in order to build the new Mac Pro. Supposedly, the top pros are satisfied with the finished specs of new Mac Pro so that’s a good thing. What I think about the prices or anything else about the Mac Pro doesn’t concern me as a consumer computer user. I’m giving Apple the benefit of the doubt at this point and will let the actual pros decide if Apple did well with the new Mac Pro. On paper it seems like a fine machine. Although some people are complaining about the price of the Mac Pro, I still think if the Mac Pro is fast enough, those pro users will make back their money in about six months or so if the Mac Pro can actually run 24/7/365 without a problem. Only time will tell.

    1. Production houses don’t give a crap because it’s not their money! People don’t care when the company is paying for the hardware not the individual. And by individual I mean self employed professionals… where the cost is out of their pockets not the company’s

      1. What do you mean “Production Houses don’t give a crap because it isn’t their money”? Of course it’s the Production House’s money and they will be paying their good money for a tool that offers the best bang for the buck, which right now will be the new Apple Mac Pro matched to the 32” 6K Apple Display XDR which retails for $5000, which is a hell of a lot less expensive than Sony’s SDM-310 31” 4K Master Monitor which retails for ~$33,000, or their now Obsolete 29.5” 4K SDM-300 which retails at discount for ~$29,000! That investment in these Apple tools will make them lots of money.

  3. I guess nobody has heard of PCEi NVMe SSD drives or PCIe adapters for M.2 NVMe SSD drives??? You know, like the kind pros would use?

    It literally doesn’t matter what Apple does with their custom SSDs for the OS as pros can expand the heck out of the system with their own drives. Since NVMe drivers are now built into MacOS it’s plug-and-play in all those PCIe slots inside the new machine. DItto for the older 2010-2012 Mac Pros, BTW.

    1. The SSD in the 2013 Mac Pro is not soldered to the logic board, I’ve replaced several on ours. Easy. You just want to make sure you replace them with SSDs made with highspeed flash Ram, not low end consumer grade SSDs.

  4. You don’t know what you’re talking about. What USB slowdown? The ports are Thunderbolt 3 ports at 40 Gb/second. . . That’s faster than the read/write speed of the SSD.

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