Valve and Apple made some long awaited news today; the latter’s new iMac Pro will support VR. But what exactly is powering the new device?
Apple went in-depth on the specs behind the most powerful Mac yet at its press event today. The iMac Pro features 18-core Xeon processors and up to 22 Teraflops of graphics computation. It features AMD’s Radeon Pro Vega GPU, the most advanced to ever be used in a Mac. There’s 16GB of high-bandwitdh memory with 11 Teraflops of single-precision compute power which an official press release claims will offer “real-time 3D rendering and immersive, high frame rate VR.”
Also on board is 4TB of SSD and 128GB of ECC and four Thunderbolt 3 ports. We’d guess the Vive might need an adapter to connect to the device, though that’s not confirmed at this point in time. There’s also a 27-inch Retina 5K display, though you won’t be viewing any VR through that.
One caveat? It isn’t cheap; the iMac Pro will retail for some $4,999, which is well over triple what some VR-ready Windows PCs cost. Apple also noted that its less expensive iMacs will be capable of VR content creation as well:
iMac delivers powerful performance for 3D graphics, video editing and gaming, and with macOS High Sierra coming this fall, iMac becomes a great platform for virtual reality content creation.
If you’re looking solely for a machine to run your new HTC Vive, the iMac Pro may not be the best place to play. The device is squarely targeted at professionals, and Apple did emphasize they were ideal for VR content creation.
The iMac Pro is releasing this December. We’ll be eager to see what VR developers are planning to make the jump to Apple’s platform in the months to come.
Update: Post includes added clarification about the iMac line and its VR capabilities.