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2013 Mac Pro Buying advice

The 2013 Mac Pro goes on sale tomorrow, December 19. I’ll be ordering one, and with a little luck, will also have a 2nd model loaned from B&H Photo. But when Apple takes orders and when Apple ships to the first lucky few remains to be seen. It also could pose a conundrum: if the features I want are BTO (build to order) and if that delays shipping BTO are a week or two or longer, then it’s “buy and return” for me, so that later I can buy what I want. Because I need it immediately for review.

Maybe it should just be renamed “2014 Mac Pro” as more appropriate to timing.

My review of the Apple 2013 Mac Pro has several pages which should be helpful, especially the Choosing CPU Speed and Memory Configuration.

“Sweet spot” for photographers: the 6-core model. Stay tuned for discussion later today for what exactly I’ll be getting and why.


See my Thunderbolt area, to be greatly expanded in the coming months.

Loads of Thunderbolt products are coming out, but here is a nice landing page at OWC for Thunderbolt products.

I’ll be putting my Accelsior PCIe SSDs into a Helios enclosure (the new dual-slot Helios PCIe chassis) and moving various hard drives into Thunderbolt cases (in time) but mainly into my favorite USB3 hard drive enclosure. For those without eSATA enclosures, a simple eSATA to USB3 adapter might do the trick.

USB3 is plenty fast to house two hard drives.


You’ll want memory. Apple’s memory is always expensive to go beyond the lower amounts. I plan to put 64GB of OWC memory in my 2013 Mac Pro. I want 128GB, but that is not yet feasible with current tech at 1866 MHz.

Click for OWC memory
16GB memory module at 1866 MHz for 2013 Mac Pro
2013 Apple Mac Pro base pricing

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