Apple gearing up to bring latest AMD graphics to 2013 iMac, new Mac Pro?

Karen Haslam
17 December, 2012
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The past year has seen Apple transition from AMD graphics to Nvidia graphics in its iMac and MacBook Pro while AMD appears to be having a tough time, having implemented cost saving measures and laid of more than 10% of its employees in 2011, and then announced plans to lay of a further 15% in October 2012. Back in September, Citigroup analyst Glen Yeung downgraded his ratings on AMD, Intel and Nvidia claiming that the shift away from PC is affecting these companies However, news that Apple is recruiting for a electrical engineer with experience with both Nvidia and AMD suggests that AMD is not entirely locked out of Apple’s future.

The new Apple job ad is for a Systems Electrical Engineer for the Mac Desktop Systems Engineering team. Along with experience with the Intel chipsets the successful application will have experience of “AMD and/or Nvidia GPUs” (graphics processing units), according to the ad which was posted on 13 December.

Apple certainly seems to be gearing up to offer the AMD Radeon HD 7000-Series in future Macs - in November a developer preview of Apple Mac OS X system included driver support for the latest AMD Radeon HD 7000-series GCN chips, according to Netkas.

Currently the only Apple Mac that features an AMD graphics is the Mac Pro, which uses AMD’sATI Radeon HD 5770 or ATI Radeon HD 5870. Apple made a minor update to the Mac Pro this summer, maintaining these same AMD graphics cards. Apple has promised that it will launch a substantially updated Mac Pro in 2013.

The latest range of iMacs feature NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M , NVIDIA GeForce GTX 675MX with and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M but last year’s range featured AMD chips. Similarly, the latest range of high-end MacBook Pro include the NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, however, the 2011 model featured AMD Radeon HD 6000M graphics. The 2011 of Mac mini also featured an AMD graphics card, but now feature an integrated Intel graphics processor.

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