Apple has neglected to update its Mac Pro for just under 18 months now, and recent speculation has suggested that the company may be set to discontinue the high-end desktop. However, according to drivers found in the latest Mac OS X 10.7.3 beta, a new Mac Pro is on its way, packing AMD’s upcoming “Tahiti” graphics cards.
Following the release of the 10.7.3 beta last Friday, Netkas.org discovered new references to an upcoming AMD graphics card nicknamed “Tahiti.” The cards in question are due to hit the market next January, and they are AMD’s new 28nm desktop cards, according to Fudzilla:
The new Tahiti series should end up with Radeon HD 7xxx branding and as it will come in XT and PRO flavours. It’s kind of safe to assume that Radeon HD 7970, codename Tahiti XT will be the fastest single chip card from AMD while the Radeon HD 7950 will be codename for the Tahiti PRO product.
Of course, the only Mac that uses desktop-class graphics cards is the Mac Pro. With support for this card in OS X 10.7.3, it appears that a new Mac Pro, or at least a refreshed model, is indeed on its way — as noted by MacGadget.de:
The presence of these drivers suggests that Apple will release the aforementioned graphics chip with the next-generation Mac Pro. The Mac Pro is the only Mac-series, which are used in desktop graphics chips. In all other Macs GPU Mobile versions can be found.
While it is feasible that Apple has introduced support for these cards for existing Mac Pros, whose users wish to upgrade theirs to the new AMD card, this isn’t typically the way the company works.