Mac Pro

This isn't merely the ultimate Mac, but an impossibly idealistic concept for a fast, green, silent, rugged, expandable, and affordable top-end workstation, made real

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now 3
Apple Mac Pro
  • Apple Mac Pro
  • Apple Mac Pro
  • Apple Mac Pro


  • Fast, green, silent, rugged, expandable


  • Expensive

Bottom Line

If my take is right, then the 2009 Nehalem Mac Pro hardware platform, once purchased, is one that should stay stable and upgradable until, say, PCI Express 3 becomes an imperative.

Would you buy this?

  • Buy now (Selling at 3 stores)

See all prices

In addition to the SATA hard drive bays, there is a front-facing bay for a second 5.25-inch, half-height optical drive. I have not tested this assumption, but I suppose you could mount another SATA hard drive in there using a standard mounting bracket. That, by the way, is the only expansion operation that might require you to look at a cable, much less handle one. Connections between system logic boards are made via short headers, none of which you need to mess with. Getting rid of all that cable helped Apple get the toxins out of Mac Pro's recipe.

The bit that took my breath away, not only for its elegance but for its implications, is the processor tray. One lightweight tray holding the CPUs and RAM is the most easily removed module in this fully modular system. With this arrangement, it takes Apple no time at all to custom-build a Mac Pro to your specifications. It takes you no time at all to reprovision (i.e., swap trays among machines according to need) or effect repairs on-site without moving machines or pulling cables.

As I see it, the tray also allows Apple to track Intel's tick-tock architecture updates without subjecting the entire system to another redesign, or subjecting Mac Pro buyers to requirements for unique spare parts. Anything that Intel changes, even the size of the socket or the speed of the RAM, should be limited to the processor tray.

This is the sort of forward-looking, longevity-focused engineering invested in very high end systems. If my take is right, then the 2009 Nehalem Mac Pro hardware platform, once purchased, is one that should stay stable and upgradable until, say, PCI Express 3 becomes an imperative.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Be the first to comment.

Post new comment

Users posting comments agree to the Good Gear Guide comments policy.

Login or register to link comments to your user profile, or you may also post a comment without being logged in.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?