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Apple acknowledging, investigating Mac Pro problems?

updated 12:30 pm EST, Tue February 9, 2010

Temporary workaround requires extra hardware

Apple has recognized and is now probing a critical problem affecting the Mac Pro, sources claim. Some Nehalem-based systems have experienced massive increases in CPU power consumption while playing audio, which are worsened by leaps in heat levels, and performance drops as high as 20 percent. In spite of these changes, the CPU usage does not register in Activity Monitor, and fans fail to kick in at proper levels.

Why the power surges are happening remains unknown, but the problem should be avoidable by running audio through a PCIe soundcard instead of the integrated chipset. The issue also leaves Windows unaffected, suggesting that the error is inherent to Mac OS X. It may be corrected in Mac OS X 10.6.3.

Similar troubles are now also being reported for some Core i7-equipped iMacs. Like the Mac Pro, Core i5 and i7 iMacs are founded on Intel's Nehalem platform. Apple's operating system may not, however, be optimized for the technology.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Got flamed earlier for asking what might be wrong with whatever Apple were introducing today and here's another "Apple acknowledges problem" article. When will the fanbois (as opposed to crusty longtime MacUsers) recognize that Apple isn't perfect and that the issue is not that they should not have problems but how they deal with them when they do arise. In this regard, Apple's record isn't great. (I don't care if Dell are worse because I don't buy Dell, I buy Apple).

  1. Arty50

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Apple has a mixed record

    While they're often slow to recognize problems, they generally (but not always) take care of things once they do.

    A friend of mine had the cooling system in his old PM G5 leak and fry the comp. The local Apple Store wasn't very helpful, but some digging on the net revealed that if you called the main support line they were replacing the machines for free. This despite the fact they were a few years out of warranty. He got a brand new Mac Pro as a result. Few other companies would do that.

    Which leads me to another point, anecdotal evidence leads me to believe that you should almost always call the main support line if you have an issue as opposed to going to a store. Especially if you have to send in the whole computer and have data that you want to save. I've read horror stories about data either not being backed up or being lost in the stores when it was promised that it would be saved. Same thing happened to my friend.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Duct tape an iPod to your

    Mac Pro's case so you can listen to your music without over-taxing all of those cores. Truthfully if anyone told me that mp3 files were too much for a Mac Pro to play, I'd call them either a fool or a liar. My dual-core iMac running Snow Leopard uses 1% to 2% processor power to play an mp3 file so I can't conceive of how it would overload a Mac Pro's eight cores.

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