What you want the new (M-whatever) Mac Pro to look like


Distinguished Member
We all know that Apple will be moving all its Macintosh systems to the M1 (or M-X or similar) based chips and with heavy investments in its own destiny from software applications, OS and semiconductor integrated circuits, I cannot help but start to wish and/or speculate what the new form factor for the top-of-the-line Mac Pro should look like and make a bold statement about.

It all started with the PowerMac G4 Cube - impressive engineering execution with fan-less cooling and compact packing of all the components, boards, etc. Just the required type of screws will stump anyone with the level of bespoke-ness involved. And if you're wondering that that looks like, see attached.

Then the semiconductor industry went mad with computing power and the consequent cooling requirements resulting in the relatively massive huge chassis needed. Confined only to the floor (at least aesthetically), the class Mac Pro "cheese-grater" form factor was not exactly a beauty. Less said the better in this aspect.

Then - the "Darth Vader" Mac Pro 2013 came - a fantastically sized power house with an equally impressive engineering ingenuity, restoring proudly the computer to the desk where any Apple Macintosh rightfully belongs. Again, just the attaching screws, connectors, etc. will have put any other computer design to shame. And we have not even touched on the unique cooling not seen since the PowerMac Cube twelve years earlier.

As seen from the M1-based MacMini's, the SoC now boasts of on-chip GPU and DDR memory and a tear-down of it showed plenty of empty space. It is clear having all these features and functions done by the Apple silicon engineering team will not only reduce space but also power consumption and supporting components while also improving performance. Rumour has it that the Mac Pro has purportedly the form factor that resembles several MacMini's stacked vertically. One cannot but help think if this is the PowerMac G4 Cube's return and therefore ideas from it borrowed.

But, I will prefer the new M-X-based Mac Pro to use the MacPro 2013 form factor. A giant heatsink in the middle makes sense. A large fan at the bottom makes sense. Hot air being expelled upwards has the benefit of allowing one's hands to be warmed nicely during colder days - an unspoken feature!.

And - last but not least - being round when seen from the top, the Mac Pro 2013 form factor is in line with Apple's headquarter and office. Now, that's style emphasising synchronistic mindsets - from machine, product to corporation.

What are YOUR thoughts?


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Distinguished Member
And this is what AnandTech thinks of the cylinder form factor - The Mac Pro Review (Late 2013) . Prepare for a long, long read up.

Admittedly, most of it is about the performance, choice and pricing of Intel based systems but with so many simplifications made with a M-X based systems, one will start to lean towards a more aesthetic industrial design.
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