Geoffrey Long
Tip of the Quill: Archives
New Apple upgrades?

Word on the street this morning is that Apple just bumped their top-of-the-line Mac Pro to an 8-core system, meaning each one sports two 3GHz quad-core Intel Xeon processors. It's been a while since I've been in the market to upgrade my tower – it's a dual 2-GHz PowerMac G5 – but I'm waiting to see how well it handles CS3 and Leopard. Part of me wonders at exactly what the power increase would be; if Leopard and CS3 really destroy these old processors I might consider it, but as superficial as it sounds (hey, I am an Apple designer junkie) I honestly doubt I'll upgrade until they redesign the exterior. The Mac Pro is still essentially a G5 tower, which is feeling really, really dated by now. Well, to me anyway. I'd love to see Apple do a complete surprise at their next unveiling and reveal cherry wood cases or something completely bizarre for their next iteration, but I get the feeling Ive's gang has its hands full with the iPhone
and the rumored iMac redesign and views the Mac Pro as more or less a 'perfected design', which is kind of sad. Resting on one's laurels is almost always fatal in this industry.

Also of note, Apple also lowered the prices of their Cinema Displays, which brings the 23" down to $899 from $1299, which is impressive, but not as impressive as the bargain-basement prices for ACDs in the refurb department: $550 for a 20-inch, $749 for the 23-inch and the 30-inch for $1599. $1599 for the 30-inch behemoth that debuted at three grand! Of course, this is probably just an attempt to clear out this stock before the new revised line of displays drops this summer, which will likely sport HDCP, integrated iSight cameras and potentially a thinner bezel (they always seem to sport a thinner bezel). If Apple were clever, they'd also add some additional ports – my old blue-and-gray Studio Display had video-in ports on the side and a toggle switch to choose between the Mac and my VCR or game station or whatever. To get that same functionality back, I'm now eyeballing a $350 HDMate adapter to plug in my Xbox 360. Not cool. Apple giveth and Apple taketh away...

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