Apple has begun showing new Mac Pro teaser videos in a select number of movie theatres accross the US. The only new part of the video is at the end where Apple announces a Fall 2013 release.
The highly anticipated new Mac Pro has received a complete redesign that hasn’t been received well by all audio professionals. Many relying on expandability through PCIe slots and internal hard drive bays responded disappointed on forums and blogs after hearing Apple removed those expansion options from the Mac Pro. Apple has a new vision where expansion is solely done externally via USB 3 and Thunderbolt 2 ports which simply doesn’t suit all professionals.
Those of us with USB, Firewire or Thunderbolt audio interfaces might welcome the extremely powerful specs of the new Mac Pro. But if you own a UAD2 PCIe card or work with a setup like a PCIe Pro Tools HD Native set you are forced to either buy a Thunderbolt PCIe expansion chassis or exchange the Mac hardware for a Hackintosh. That last one is a tedious one as you have to carefully select your hardware components to put together a reliable machine that runs OS X properly. And if there’s one thing that pro’s want, it is a machine that is reliable and that works straight out of the box. That’s probably why many chose Apple hardware in the first place. Another option is to leave the Mac platform behind completely and go for Windows. This isn’t always an good option either as many professionals have a lot of knowledge and experience that you would have to rebuild going to another OS.
I foresee many third party hardware developers trying to fill the gap with Thundebolt PCIe expansion chassis’ and hard drive bays. This will surely bring the price down. Who knows, maybe Apple will deliver a solution. Let’s just hope the Mac Pro is released at the beginning of the fall rather than the end so we can plan our future hardware setup.