A Closer Look at Processor Options and Performance for Apple's New Mac Pro

mac_pro_2013Yesterday, we noted that a 6-core version of Apple's upcoming Mac Pro had shown up in the results database of popular benchmarking tool Geekbench, the third variety of the machine to appear there since June. We compared performance of that machine to an 8-core version from late September but noted that a 12-core version from June was tested using an older version of Geekbench with a different baseline, making direct comparisons with that machine difficult.

John Poole of Primate Labs, the company behind Geekbench, has now put together a good overview of what users should expect for the new Mac Pro when it comes to processor options and performance. With Geekbench being a cross-platform tool, Poole has taken several results from Windows machines running the processors that will be offered in the Mac Pro to develop an estimate of performance of the various Mac Pro models.

As we noted in yesterday's report, the 6-core and 8-core versions showed nearly identical Geekbench scores for single-core tests, and Poole highlights how that will be expected to hold true for the as yet unseen quad-core model due to consistent Turbo Boost frequencies of 3.9 GHz. The 12-core version will, however, score approximately 15% lower on single-core tests due to its slower 3.5 GHz Turbo Boost.

These estimates suggest that single-core performance will be similar for the 4-, 6-, and 8-core models. Since all of the processors have the same Turbo Boost frequency, and since the processors run single-core tasks at the Turbo Boost frequency, this isn't surprising news. However, it is welcome news since users will not have to sacrifice single-core performance when choosing between the 4-core and the 6- or 8-core models.

Where the 12-core version unsurprisingly shines is in multi-core situations, showing roughly 20% improvement over the previous high-end 12-core model and scores approaching 30,000. Other processor options also compare favorably to their corresponding models from the previous generation of Mac Pro.

mac_pro_2013_geekbench_estimate
CPU capability is of course only one part of the overall system performance, and the new Mac Pro will also offer significantly improved graphics performance in the form of standard dual AMD FirePro GPUs. In addition to the systems being able to drive up to three 4K displays simultaneously, Apple clearly expects developers of high-end software to embrace OpenCL to allow Mac Pro users to tap into that vast GPU power for general computational tasks.

Apple's new Mac Pro is launching in December, and the company has so far only released pricing on base configurations of the quad-core ($2999) and 6-core ($3999) models. Customized configurations boosting to the available 8-core or 12-core CPU and the high-end D700 GPU, as well as other options such as RAM and flash storage, will push prices much higher for customers interested in maximum performance.

Related Roundup: Mac Pro
Buyer's Guide: Mac Pro (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
91 months ago

Meh.... The hackint0sh is sounding more and more appealing every day. Better performance, upgradability, and expandability.

Maybe for a personal machine.

But, as a Hackintosh owner, I can tell you its definitely not worth the headache unless it's a hobby-machine for you.

It's fun to get everything together, and build it. But when you just can't get the installer to boot no matter what, or bluetooth just randomly doesn't work sometimes ... it can be infuriating.

Also, a Hackintosh has NEVER been a replacement for the Mac Pro. If you need that type of power (ECC memory, Xeon processors, dual socket), (1) a hack job won't cut it, the time isn't worth it, and (2) there aren't really many (ANY) stable dual socket builds anyways.

A hackintosh is more of a replacement for a headless iMac, into which you can put as many cards and drives as you want.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
91 months ago
I'm actually quite disappointed at the over-the-year performance increase. And for audio-engineers the dual graphics will sit there doing nothing.[COLOR="#808080"]
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
91 months ago
Meh.... The hackint0sh is sounding more and more appealing every day. Better performance, upgradability, and expandability.
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
91 months ago

Meh.... The hackint0sh is sounding more and more appealing every day. Better performance, upgradability, and expandability.


If you build a hackintosh with same spec as Mac pro .. it will cost almost same or even more (if you add legal softwares).

Its unProfessional to compare Mac pro with xeon/fire pro TO custom built i7 / GTX

its like compare HP Z820 workstation with HP ENVY 700 Desktop
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
91 months ago
Oh, I thought the entry-level Mac Pro was faster than the fastest old Mac Pro... :(
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
91 months ago
I find it annoying how people see these numbers and get instantly dismayed... cpu is but one factor.

Also, these are estimates based on pc machines only running the same processor. Maybe wait and see actual scores when the actual machines are tested.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iPhone 12 Pro in Graphite and iPhone 12 in Blue Shown Off in Unboxing Videos

Monday October 19, 2020 8:20 am PDT by
While the iPhone 12 Pro does not launch until Friday, we now have an early unboxing video of the device courtesy of Twitter account DuanRui, providing a closer look at the shiny new flat-edge design and sleek Graphite color option. Ben Geskin re-uploaded the unboxing video to YouTube, which we've embedded below: Geskin has also uploaded an unboxing video of the iPhone 12 in Blue: ...

Kuo: iPhone 12 Pro Demand Higher Than Expected

Sunday October 18, 2020 10:39 pm PDT by
TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released a research note this morning detailing what he's seen with the volume of iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro pre-orders in the first weekend of sales. Kuo had previously indicated that Apple's estimated shipment allocations for the new iPhone models placed the iPhone 12 at the top with 40-45% of inventory allocation (up from 15-20%). However, ...

New Photos Offer Better Look at iPhone 12 Color Options

Tuesday October 20, 2020 2:34 am PDT by
As we wait for the iPhone 12 review embargo to lift later today, more pictures are circulating of the devices in real-world lighting conditions, providing a better look at the different colors available. Leaker DuanRui has shared images on Twitter of the iPhone 12 in white, black, blue, green, and (PRODUCT)RED. The black and white colors are similar to the iPhone 11 colors, but the other...

Hands-On With Apple's MagSafe Charger for iPhone 12

Monday October 19, 2020 11:54 am PDT by
Alongside the new iPhone 12 models, Apple introduced a MagSafe charger that attaches to the back of the iPhones using magnets embedded both in the charger and in the iPhone. It allows for speedier charging and paves the way for a portless iPhone in the future. MagSafe chargers are shipping out and are in some Apple retail locations now, and we picked one up to check it out. Subscribe to the ...

Some Apple Watch SE Owners Experiencing Issues With Overheating [Updated]

Monday October 19, 2020 11:38 am PDT by
There may be an issue with the new Apple Watch SE, which some users have found is overheating after a few hours of usage. Several Apple Watch SE owners in South Korea have run into problems, as noted in a Reddit post chronicling the complaints. There have been six reports from Apple Watch SE owners in South Korea who have had their Apple Watches get hot and malfunction, with a yellow spot...

Apple's New MagSafe Charger and Cases Begin Arriving to Customers

Saturday October 17, 2020 10:10 am PDT by
Apple's new MagSafe charger and cases have begun arriving to some customers earlier than expected, and images of the accessories have started to surface on Twitter. The photos provide a first look at the products in real-world use. As of writing, some MagSafe cases are also available for pickup at select Apple Stores in countries like the United States, Canada, and Germany. Filip...

Apple Releases iPadOS and iOS 14.1 With Multiple Bug Fixes Ahead of iPhone 12 Launch

Tuesday October 20, 2020 10:06 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.1, the first major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 14 operating system updates that were released in September. iOS and iPadOS 14.1 come a week after Apple released the golden master versions of the updates to developers. The iOS 14.1 update can be downloaded for free and it is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access...

Watch: iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro Unboxing Videos and First Impressions

Tuesday October 20, 2020 6:05 am PDT by
Apple's embargo has lifted for iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro reviews. In addition to our detailed review roundups for each device, we've rounded up over a dozen unboxing videos and first impressions below. iPhone 12 in Blue on left and iPhone 12 Pro in Pacific Blue on right via Engadget Key new features of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro include a flat-edge design, 5G support, a much faster A14 ...

Apple Plans to Enable 5G in Dual SIM Mode With Software Update Later This Year

Monday October 19, 2020 9:20 am PDT by
iPhone XS models and newer feature both a physical SIM slot and a digital eSIM, allowing for a feature known as dual SIM, dual standby. This means you can have two lines of service on one iPhone, which is useful for purchasing data-only plans while traveling abroad or having personal and business lines on a single iPhone. 5G will not be available in Dual SIM mode on the iPhone 12 and iPhone...

Brazilian Certifications Suggest iPhone 12 Mini Features 2,227mAh Battery and iPhone 12 Has 2,815mAh Battery

Friday October 16, 2020 1:08 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone mini has the shortest battery life out of all the iPhones in the iPhone 12 lineup due to its small size, but Apple has not provided public information about the battery's capacity. A regulatory filing from Brazil, however, suggests the iPhone 12 mini has a battery capacity of 2,227mAh. The same regulatory information says the iPhone 12 features a 2,815mAh battery, which is...