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View Full Version : Upgrade or buy new?




alphaod
Aug 10, 2011, 07:09 AM
So I've just realized I can upgrade my Mac Pro 2009 firmware to the 2010 firmware which opens up processor upgrade options.

Currently looking at the X5675 (3.06GHz) 6-core; problem being these are expensive and I also need to upgrade the RAM to 1333MHz which adds to the cost.

The alternative is to wait until my AppleCare expires next year and then think about a new machine.

Current machine is fast, but as my notebook catches up it feels slower than before. I work with photography and video, so would really like to complete my jobs faster.

Finally as I use Final Cut, I've considered distributed processing with Compressor, so maybe get a Mac mini or two for adding power? Though I've never used distributed processing. Also it wouldn't help with Ps and Lr which I use quite often.

So I've been quite undecided on this and therefore am looking for opinions on this.

Thanks!



philipma1957
Aug 10, 2011, 08:45 AM
if I remember you have a dual cpu 8 core total. so you are stuck with the hi end cpus. well the single cpu hex the 3.33 was 999 usd and has had a drop to 620 usd about a month ago. I would consider waiting to see if your dual hex cpu drops in price over the next 3 or 4 months. As for the new mac mini I have all of them 2.3 2.5 2.7 single hdd models and a 2.0 quad with 2 750gb 7200 rpm hdds.

the quad in the usa with the dual 750gb hdds is 1100 add more ram (8gb) it is 1150 that is less then half price of a new 2.8 quad mac pro. It is almost as fast as the base mac pro and use about 25 percent the power. this is true if you do a lot of handbrake work. once again waiting may be the right choice to see if t-bolt gpus can be added on for a good price.

Chupa Chupa
Aug 10, 2011, 10:32 AM
Personally, I've never found it cost effective to do major upgrades on a MP b/c of the excellent resale value of MPs. It's usually less expensive to sell, and use the proceeds + the money that would be spent on upgrades to buy a new machine with everything more modern, fresh, and on warranty.

PCs are a different story b/c used PC have terrible resale value.

nanofrog
Aug 10, 2011, 05:56 PM
What's your storage system like?

I ask, as that and the software used may be the real bottleneck rather than the cores and memory (for example, Photoshop sucks with storage as disk functions are single threaded, so even a super fast storage system won't do all that much; seems about 200 - 300 MB/s or so is the most it can utilize from what I'm seeing). Video work OTOH, can benefit from higher throughputs.

BTW, if you do upgrade the CPU's, you don't have to get 1333MHz memory. Given the type of usage, the software you're using won't utilize it anyway.