@ No one gives a crap about your Mac
I would be less concerned about the comment by someone you refer to as 'a Mac zealot' pointing out that Apple have had a computer available with 8 cores for about six months (or more?), and more concerned about how ... if this is the case, why is it suddenly *news* when HP have such a machine for sale?
I mean, a news headline to announce an 8-core machine, when such things have been on the market for over half a year? Since when did El Reg become HP's marketing wing?
Ant Colonel Zander, who pissed on your cornflakes? Since Macs are basically PCs these days anyway, it's not all about iTunes and Leopard. I imagine Vista runs with almost acceptable performance on an 8-core Mac ... as long as you're not copying files to a thumbdrive, and you turn UAC off.