updated 03:45 pm EDT, Thu March 18, 2010
Apple would break out iMac display as separate
Apple is planning an update to its pro lineup that would include only its second LED-lit Cinema Display, a pair of sources noted today. The company should break out the display from the 27-inch iMac into a discrete model with the same 2560x1440 resolution and image quality. AppleInsider claims Apple had wanted to release the screen earlier but had to wait until the 27-inch panel dropped in cost; the iMac helped improve economies of scale.
Accompanying the 27-inch LED Cinema Display should be a new Mac Pro. The workstation would get at least one 12-core model using two of Intel's six-core Xeon 5600 processors. Most of the details are still vague, but many assume it will follow Apple's current strategy of offering an 'entry' Mac Pro with a single Xeon while the dual-Xeon model would be top-end. Rumors have circulated of a 3.33GHz Core i7 model at the entry level, but this would require an entirely different Intel chipset and memory support.
Both the LCD and the tower might not ship until June, or about 15 months after the last update. The Mac Pro's long update schedule is partly owing to Intel's late release of Xeons, which would hold up the Mac Pro regardless of Apple's intentions, but is somewhat uncharacteristic for a company which has often updated its pro desktop at the start of a new year.