Good news, tinkerers: Mac Pro’s CPU is removable

Mac Pro (removable CPU, OWC 001)

Quick, what’s more painful than dropping anywhere between $3,000 to $20,000 on Apple’s juicy new Mac Pro? Being unable to perform a DIY upgrade of the computer’s main processor to a faster Intel chip down the road, of course! But worry not as a quick teardown has confirmed an upgradeable CPU so tinkerers and creative pros around the world can breathe a collective sigh of relief.

Other World Computing, a U.S. company which has been in the business of selling various after-market upgrades for Apple products since 1998, has tore apart the new Mac Pro to reveal a socketed Intel Xeon E5 chip, potentially allowing for future upgrades…

The removable CPU (OWC, via MacRumors) – you can see it pictured above – uses the LGA 2011 socket. What’s more, all four Intel CPUs available in the $2,999/$3,999 configurations or as built-to-order upgrades use the same LGA 2011 socket.

In theory, this should allow for third-party CPU upgrades for the machine. You can already save yourself a couple hundred bucks on Mac Pro RAM upgrades, courtesy of OWC, so expect DIY CPU upgrades from them soon.

Here’s another image of Mac Pro parts.

Mac Pro (teardown, OWC 001)

Looks like nearly everything is replaceable or expandable.

Built-to-order CPU upgrades for the new Mac Pro don’t come cheap.

Should you find Intel’s stock 3.7GHz quad-core Xeon E5 chip with 10MB of L3 cache lagging, prepare to drop anywhere between an additional $500 (3.5GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon E5 with 12MB of L3 cache) to as much as a whopping $3,500 (2.7GHz 12-core Intel Xeon E5 with 30MB of L3 cache) on CPU upgrades.

This has nothing to do with Apple – these are the latest workstation Intel chips so high prices are the norm.

Oh, and here’s a Mac Pro driving a total of six 27-inch displays.

Mac Pro (Thunderbolt Displays, OWC 001)

Crazy, huh?

Just to refresh your memory, despite its ridiculously small footprint (compared to the previous model), the new Mac Pro has dual-GPUs from AMD capable of driving three external displays simultaneously, each in 4K resolution.

What’s more, reviewers and critics around the world have found that the machine’s fast CPU coupled with dual-GPUs, speedy PCI Express flash storage and optimized Final Cut Pro X software makes 4K video editing a reality, along with real-time video effects on 4K content without as much as dropping a frame.