It's been talked about and endlessly dissected. It's either the future of professional computing or an overpriced, undersized trash can. It's the new Mac Pro, it's on sale starting today, and I've finally had a chance to hold it in my own two hands.
It cuts a striking figure, despite its relatively small stature. It's also incredibly dense, far heavier than I expected. Ten inches tall, 6 inches around, and about weighing in at around 11 pounds, it's definitely meant to be held by its bottom instead of its top lip.
It's astonishingly reflective — I can see the screen clearly, and anyone who walks by is immediately recognizable — and it picks up fingerprints really easily. But it's beautiful, understated, and looks great on a desk next to the 4K Sharp monitor we've paired it with. It's particularly good-looking with its case off, exposing the Mac Pro's machinery, but the case is required to dissipate heat. You can't even use the Mac Pro with it off.
It's small, but dense — and barely looks like a computer at all
All the device's ports are on the back, bordered by a light that turns on and pulses when you spin the computer toward you. When you first turn it on, the fan kicks in, smelling a little like a new car at first. But we've been using it for a few minutes and it's quiet and cool, with little indication that it's even on in the first place. It's so unassuming and unadorned that you almost overlook it — that's a huge improvement from the big, boxy previous models.
We've only just begun using the Mac Pro, and we're already running tests and benchmarks on the new device. There's a lot to explore, but one thing's for sure: there's never been a computer quite like this before.
And it really does look a little like a trash can.