Apple Announces Vega-Equipped iMac Pro, Updates Existing Macs With Better Graphics

Elizabeth Williams
June 6, 2017

Speaking of the non-pro laptop, Apple says, "With thin and light designs, powerful performance, awesome displays and all-day battery life, Mac notebooks deliver the world's best portable computing experience".

In addition to announcing external GPU support with macOS High Sierra, the company also revealed that AMD GPUs will make their way into its Mac products, with the most notable example being Vega's inclusion with a new iMac Pro all-in-one. Those aren't as strong as the more traditional Intel Core chips you'd see in a MacBook Pro - or some Windows laptops around the MacBook's size - but they've generally been improved improved to the point of respectability over the past couple of years.

The graphics are workstation-grade - the upcoming Radeon Vega with up to 16GB VRAM.

Apple's biggest push with the iMac Pro, though, came by detailing what it can do. "We reengineered the whole system and designed an entirely new thermal architecture to pack extraordinary performance into the elegant, quiet iMac enclosure our customers love - iMac Pro is a huge step forward and there's never been anything like it".

Apple calls this new computer the iMac Pro, and from the dark space grey exterior to the "Pro" moniker, it's clear this isn't your regular iMac.

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The 15-inch MacBook Pro now comes with more powerful discrete graphics in its standard configuration. There are no new ports or features, although pricing is changing a bit - the starting price for the 13-inch non-touch bar model is now $1,299.

While the entire iMac line of 21.5-inch and 27-inch models got a refresh, the biggest announcement was the new iMac Pro.

With incredibly thin and seamless enclosures, stunning displays and fast processors and storage, iMac sets the gold standard for desktops.

The Mac upgrades are Apple's first to the MacBook Pro since the computer was revamped last fall with a slimmer design and the Touch Bar touchscreen strip on the keyboard.

Innovative thermal architecture gives iMac Pro 80 percent more cooling capacity, allowing for extreme performance in the same thin and seamless iMac design. It offers 11 TFLOPS in single precision and 22 TFLOPS in half precision - a boon for machine learning. The iMac Pro can also be maxed out with 128GB of ECC memory and a 4TB SSD drive, all cooled by a new dual centrifugal fan system that hopefully won't require you to wear headphones all day long while you work. For the first time ever on a Mac, iMac Pro features 10Gb Ethernet for up to 10 times faster networking.

Other reports by VgToday

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