5 Reasons Why the Mac Pro is Prime for Pro Audio


Everything about the new Mac Pro tower makes a commanding statement, sending a clear message that Apple is ready to dominate the professional market once again. Not only is it engineered for ultimate performance, but its modular design empowers the demanding engineer with the freedom to customize and expand the Mac Pro effortlessly according to their unique needs. Whether you’re scoring soundtracks, producing chart-topping hits, or mixing on the dub stage for a feature film, the new Mac Pro delivers the extreme resources required to handle the intensity of your high-profile pro audio work smoothly. Need some proof? Here are five reasons why the new Mac Pro is prime for pro audio applications.

Modernized User-Expandable Design

Slide off the aluminum housing with the twist of a handle to reveal unfettered access to the Mac Pro’s internals. Its dual-sided logic board lets you quickly add and remove components while bypassing the frustration of reaching into tight spaces. Need to swap out drives before starting a new film mix, beef up the RAM to handle virtual instruments in your next orchestral composition, or pop in a DSP card to run more tracks and plug-ins? Thanks to the modularity of the new Mac Pro, you can do all those things and more.

Up to 28 Cores

When your sessions are going strong, you need a computer that won’t choke under pressure. With CPU configurations ranging from 3.5 GHz eight-core to 2.5 GHz 28-core, the Mac Pro’s Intel® Xeon W™ processor ensures supreme speed. Go ahead, push your DAW as hard as you can; write intricate automation, load tons of real-time plug-ins without rendering, and run multiple heavy programs simultaneously. For a pop producer with software such as Logic Pro, Ableton Live, and Reason, the Mac Pro offers unmatched power to keep the creative juices unconstrained.

Up to 1.5TB of Memory

In modern workflows, music producers and composers rely heavily on a collection of virtual instruments and sample libraries. Vienna Symphonic Library Ensemble Pro, EastWest Hollywood Strings, Spectrasonics Omnisphere, Native Instruments KOMPLETE, Toontrack Superior Drummer, the list goes on…. Such tools are inspiring and indispensable, but also impose a heavy burden on the host computer and gobble up memory rather quickly. In fact, it’s common practice to run Vienna Ensemble Pro on a second computer just to facilitate smooth operation. However, since the Mac Pro has 12 user-accessible DIMM slots for a staggering 1.5TB of maximum RAM, it can power VIs, soft synths, virtual drum plug-ins, and large sample-based instruments along with extensive effects processing on a single machine.

Eight PCI Express Slots

Anyone who mixes music or audio for video should be well aware of Avid Pro Tools and Universal Audio. Pro Tools has been a staple DAW in recording studios and dub stages for decades, and Universal Audio makes some of the most popular audio processing plug-ins out there. At the heart of its high-end setups is a similar concept centered around DSP chips. To get the most out of a Pro Tools Ultimate system (up to 768 audio tracks and up to 192 channels of I/O), you need Avid HDX cards (PCIe cards with DSP chips). To run Universal Audio plug-ins, you need at least one of their interfaces, DSP boxes, or UAD-2 DSP accelerator PCIe cards. There are eight PCI Express slots on the Mac Pro. Yes, EIGHT! Imagine what you can do with that many slots. Install three HDX cards and three UAD-2 OCTO PCIe cards, and you’ll have an absolutely unreal mixing machine with room for further expansion.

Plenty of Connectivity

Its highly likely that you’ll still want to hook up some peripherals. The Mac Pro has two 10Gb Ethernet ports, two top-panel ports for Thunderbolt™ 3 / USB Type-C / DisplayPort, a removable I/O card with two USB Type-A ports (up to 5 Gb/s), and two Thunderbolt™ 3 ports that also support USB Type-C and DisplayPort. Go for it, plug in the latest and greatest audio interfaces, external drives, MIDI controller, and DAW control surface without having to use a hub.


As you can see, there’s much about the new Mac Pro that fulfills the requests of power users everywhere. And as you might suspect, there’s a lot more about it that warrants further examination. So, check it out and use the Comments section below to let us know how you’d use a new Mac Pro.

Stop by the B&H "Mac Pro, Unleashed" Page to learn more about how the Mac Pro can help different types of creative workflows.

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