This Might Be Our First Look at Apple’s New Mac Pro – But Is It Legit?

Apple Mac Pro Concept Credit: Bro.King
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Apple’s highly anticipated refresh to the Mac Pro is coming, but details about its form and features are incredibly scarce. A new leak this week may change that.

An image (shown below) of an alleged internal Apple presentation slide for the “Mac Pro 7.1” surfaced on Imgur over the weekend. The slide is labeled for Apple internal usage and is dated as last modified on Nov. 7, 2018. While there are specifications and design details, its author field is blurred out.

Form factor wise, the images depict a squarish Mac device measuring 7.7 x 11.55 x 11.55 inches. The design renders only show the side, top and front of the device — its rear I/O setup is curiously left out.

The Mac Pro in the image is allegedly outfitted with an Intel Xeon W Cascade Lake-X processor and an Apple T2 security chip. It also supposedly packs an “Apple X2 Accelerator,” AMD Firepro-X memory, and DD45 SO-DIMM memory.

As far as other specifications, the Mac Pro is said to come with eight Thunderbolt 3 ports with “Thunderbolt 4” compatibility, two HDMI 2.1 ports and support for 10-gigabit ethernet and Bluetooth 5.1

All in all, that’s a pretty exciting setup for a long-awaited predecessor to the Mac Pro lineup. But, as AppleInsider points out, there are a number of things that could mark the internal slide as illegitimate.

For one, the branding for AMD’s FirePro GPU is incorrect (“Firepro-X”). Furthermore, there’s currently no such thing as Thunderbolt 4 — no one has released or even announced that upgrade to the Thunderbolt standard. And, interestingly, the use of DDR5 RAM is also suspect, since widespread adopting of the memory technology isn’t expected until next year.

Those details don’t automatically rule out the image as a fake, but they do seriously call the leak’s authenticity into question.

When it comes to what we actually know about the upcoming Mac Pro refresh, there certainly isn’t much. The next-generation Mac Pro is largely expected to be announced sometime this year, with a retail release date in 2020.

The new Mac Pro is also expected to adopt a stackable module system. The only required module would be the “brain,” which will likely contain the logic board and other critical components. Everything else, such as additional storage, memory and upgraded GPUs, could be addable in optional modules.

In other words, it’s supposed to be a Mac that does away with some of the chief complaints about Apple’s computers — namely, that they’re hard to repair and impossible to upgrade after purchase.

That possibility has made the Mac Pro one of Apple’s most anticipated products, at least among professional users and hardcore Mac fans. This anticipation means that the blogosphere is ripe for inauthentic leaks.

In the meantime, users may just have to wait until next month to find out more about the Mac Pro. While a Mac Pro announcement isn’t certain at WWDC, several reports indicate that Apple is seriously considering teasing the device at the event.

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