Apple Mac Pro 2010/2011 Workstation Virtual Teardown

Apple announced yesterday its most powerful computer yet and while the 2010 version of the Mac Pro workstation won't be available till August 2010, we can already virtually tear it down, compare it to its Windows-based counterparts and estimate how much it costs to build.

The cheapest Mac Pro will cost £1999 and feature the following parts; we have guesstimated the prices of the components based on what we believe is the nearest equivalent.

Bear in mind though that comparing Macs to PCs is like comparing Apples to Oranges since some components like Apple's Magic Mouse or the Mac Pro disctinctive casing cannot be purchased elsewhere.

  • A Quad-core Intel Xeon W3530 running at 2.8GHz with 8MB L2 cache (£237 at Lambdatek)
  • 3GB DDR3 ECC 1066MHz Kingston memory modules (£86.55 at Ebuyer)
  • 1TB SATA2 Hard disk drive (£48.17 at Ebuyer), ATI Radeon 5770 with 1GB GDDR5 (£134 at Ebuyer)
  • 18x DVD writer (£13.99 at Ebuyer)
  • Motherboard with at least four PCI Express slots & two GbE ports (£270.43 at Ebuyer)
  • Bluetooth 2.1+ EDR (£2.99 at Ebuyer)
  • 802.11n Wi-Fi (£15.98 at Ebuyer)
  • Four Firewire ports (£15.40 at Ebuyer)
  • Stylish tower casing with 1Kw PSU (£91.94 and £148.60 at Ebuyer)
  • Apple Mac Box Set (£89.89 at Amazon), eye catching space saving wireless keyboard and mouse (£50.27 at Ebuyer).

In total, we found out that the cost of the components should we build an equivalent PC would possibly be just short of £1200 using components available on the market and we're certain that Apple could go much lower than that, possibly under £1000, around half the SRP of the Mac Pro.

However, it accounts only for part of the equation and does not include the following; transport and packaging, cost of development, labour, other accessories, logistics, licensing, royalties, marketing, advertising and other ancillary costs.