Rumors have been piling up for some time regarding a refresh of the Mac Pro, which may feature a new rack-mountable design and could be available in July or August. A new report now claims that the Mac Pro will be getting a new custom-built Intel processor, while the Mac Mini will be getting integrated graphics rather than a solution from Nvidia.
The new Mac Mini will, in addition to receiving Thunderbolt technology and new Sandy Bridge processors, will also be making the move to Intel’s HD integrated graphics rather than a solution from Nvidia as in the past.
This seems like the intuitive response from Apple – users of Mac Minis are usually looking for a cheap Mac that won’t necessarily need to be able to perform high-level graphical tasks, and the integrated graphics save Apple money, as well as saving on the unit’s power consumption.
As for the Mac Pro, the report indicates that the new units will feature a new rack-mountable design as part of a new server version of the Mac Pro, supposedly in an effort to replace the role that the Xserve used to fill.
Additionally – and this part is particularly interesting – the report claims that Apple will be using a unique custom-built Intel CPU in the new Mac Pro, which is unavailable on the consumer market. While its unclear what Apple might be hoping to achieve with the new CPU, I’ll be excited to see what its capable of.
The reliability of this report is unknown, but does provide some intriguing information that I hope turns out to be correct.