~$4K for an eight-core Intel Mac -- sign of the times...
According to the company's Web site, a new version of the Mac Pro has two of Intel's "quad-core" Xeon chips, doubling the number of microprocessors in the product line to eight. Other models will continue to offer two "dual-core" Xeons, each with two microprocessors.
Many mainstream computing jobs, like word processing, carry out chores sequentially and don't get much benefit so many calculating engines. But Apple has a large audience among artists, designers and other professionals, and some programs they use have been modified so that more processors can cut the time needed to certain jobs.
The performance comes at a price. Upgrading to the dual quad-core configuration adds $1,498 to the base price of a Mac Pro, which starts at $2,499. So the least expensive eight-core machine is $3,997, according to the Web site.