Apple's updated Mac Pro uses a special version of Intel's Xeon workstation-class processor, the semiconductor company said in an e-mail note. The 3GHz quad-core CPU at the heart of the fastest system is currently an unannounced model that sits at the top of the company's performance range and is presently used only by Apple.
"We are indeed shipping a 3.0GHz Xeon version [and] expect to see faster gigahertz speeds for our high-end [Core 2] Extreme PCs very soon, too," said Intel's Bill Kircos. "For now, the product is in limited production and Apple has chosen to adopt it. We will introduce another 3.0GHz Xeon SKU later on as well."
The model in question is the Xeon X5365, according to additional comments by Intel's Italian PR director Ruben Simpliciano. The chip currently outpaces the official fastest quad-core processor from Intel, the 2.66GHz Xeon 5355, while maintaining the 8MB of total level 2 cache and 1333MHz system bus of its predecessors.
Apple has recently been found using special Intel processors in some of its devices, such as the 1GHz Pentium M modified to run at lower power levels inside the Apple TV media hub.