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View Full Version : Switching from PM G5 to MacPro ?




Horst
Nov 17, 2008, 06:56 AM
My computer is beginning to feel a little tired, so I'm thinking about an upgrade.

Right now I'm using a 2.0 Ghz/ DP/4.5 Gb Ram (single core) G5 PowerMac, mainly to run Photoshop CS2 and Cinema 4D.

I'm retouching high-res files of 200-500 MB, and render in fairly high quality in C4D; while my rig's performance is still ok in PS, rendering in Cinema really isn't much fun ...

1: So I'm wondering, what sort of performance gains can I expect from switching to a MacPro ?

I'm considering the 2.8 Ghz DP/ 8 core model, 8 GB Ram, GeForce 8800 GT (running both a 23" and 20" ACD), as the basic configuration, and upgrading Photoshop to CS3/4.

2: Is it worth considering the 3.0/3.2 Ghz versions, which are quite a bit more pricey, or maybe rather add more Ram, or a second GPU (Leopard/ CS4) ?

3: The inevitable question: Buy now or wait for the new chips, might those offer a considerable increase in performance for my needs ?
I'd like to buy within 6 months, am not too fond of 1st generation models, and will need Firewire for my Digital Camera Back.

Any advice and shared experiences would be much appreciated .



edesignuk
Nov 17, 2008, 07:01 AM
The model you're looking at will knock your G5 for six, no question. If you were to buy I would stick with the 2.8 unless you have money to burn. The gains on the 3/3.2 just aren't worth the money.

That said, Nelhams will hopefully be out early next year. These promise substantial gains over the current generation again. Though you can be sure things like RAM will be very very expensive, and you might even find the video cards only come with DisplayPort which will mean buying adapters to run with your current screens.

teleromeo
Nov 17, 2008, 07:07 AM
Personally I run photoshop CS3 on a powerbook G4 and I'm waiting until the updated Mac Pro gets introduced somewhere in the first quarter of 2009. My guess is an introduction of new displays and a redesigned Mac Pro case when Steve Jobs Kicks off MWSF with his keynote.
If you really need the machine now, buy it, if you can wait a couple of months, just wait and see what january brings.

Umbongo
Nov 17, 2008, 07:09 AM
My computer is beginning to feel a little tired, so I'm thinking about an upgrade.

Right now I'm using a 2.0 Ghz/ DP/4.5 Gb Ram (single core) G5 PowerMac, mainly to run Photoshop CS2 and Cinema 4D.

I'm retouching high-res files of 200-500 MB, and render in fairly high quality in C4D; while my rig's performance is still ok in PS, rendering in Cinema really isn't much fun ...

1: So I'm wondering, what sort of performance gains can I expect from switching to a MacPro ?

I'm considering the 2.8 Ghz DP/ 8 core model, 8 GB Ram, GeForce 8800 GT (running both a 23" and 20" ACD), as the basic configuration, and upgrading Photoshop to CS3/4.

2: Is it worth considering the 3.0/3.2 Ghz versions, which are quite a bit more pricey, or maybe rather add more Ram, or a second GPU (Leopard/ CS4) ?

In terms of processor speed (i.e. 2GHz G5 core vs 2.8GHz Intel core) you are looking at about twice the speed. You should see more than that on some tasks and of course you will have 4 times the cores. The faster architecture, more memory and a newer GPU should give you an overall feeling of everything being smoother. I wouldn't bother with anything other than what you are going for (don't buy you memory from Apple of course). The processors upgrades just give you more time back and as you're currently on a 4-5 year old G5 I'm guessing that isn't critical for you. 8GB is a huge amount of memory and you should at least see how you get on with that before getting any more. If you have issues with display lag driving both displays with a single 8800GT then consider other options.


3: The inevitable question: Buy now or wait for the new chips, might those offer a considerable increase in performance for my needs ?
I'd like to buy within 6 months, am not too fond of 1st generation models, and will need Firewire for my Digital Camera Back.

Any advice and shared experiences would be much appreciated .

You may see another 10-20% overall from the newer Mac Pros over the current one, but that is almost negible being that you are going to get such massive improvements from the current one anyway. So it's up to you whether you want to wait 2-5 months using your current setup.

iGary
Nov 17, 2008, 07:11 AM
1. Compared to the model you are replacing, as it's been said, the performance will be quite significant. I replaced a Quad G5 about 8 months ago and their is a performance difference, but only slightly so. With yours it will be quite noticeable.

2. Don't bother with the faster (and expensive) processors. Only thing you'll gain is value at resale time and very little performance.

3. People are guessing new procs in January, but who knows. You might wait 6 months and get nothing...

P.S. Don't get your RAM from Apple.

Horst
Nov 17, 2008, 12:00 PM
Thanks a bunch indeed for the replies !

Another thing that worries me are all the rumours of Apple dumping Firewire, the above mentioned change in display ports and whatever else could compromise compatibility.

I've only recently chosen an earlier MBP over the new model, for the matte display and FW ports, and am concerned I'll wait for months only to find the next MacPro lacking features I need or got used to.

Good point about Ram prices , I tend to forget about that.

Techguy172
Nov 17, 2008, 12:08 PM
Thanks a bunch indeed for the replies !

Another thing that worries me are all the rumours of Apple dumping Firewire, the above mentioned change in display ports and whatever else could compromise compatibility.

I've only recently chosen an earlier MBP over the new model, for the matte display and FW ports, and am concerned I'll wait for months only to find the next MacPro lacking features I need or got used to.

Good point about Ram prices , I tend to forget about that.

They won't drop Firewire Ports on the Mac Pro. It will most likely get mini display port though.

Umbongo
Nov 17, 2008, 02:06 PM
They won't drop Firewire Ports on the Mac Pro. It will most likely get mini display port though.

Although Jobs said they would be moving to mini DisplayPort it's more likely he meant DisplayPort technology rather than a mini connector on all Macs as this would mean Apple having to get special graphics cards made when there are already versions that do DisplayPort and D-DVI on them. Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort and visa versa should be easy to do.

Techguy172
Nov 17, 2008, 02:11 PM
Although Jobs said they would be moving to mini DisplayPort it's more likely he meant DisplayPort technology rather than a mini connector on all Macs as this would mean Apple having to get special graphics cards made when there are already versions that do DisplayPort and D-DVI on them. Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort and visa versa should be easy to do.

That's what I meant to say.

iVoid
Nov 17, 2008, 05:10 PM
Although Jobs said they would be moving to mini DisplayPort it's more likely he meant DisplayPort technology rather than a mini connector on all Macs as this would mean Apple having to get special graphics cards made when there are already versions that do DisplayPort and D-DVI on them. Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort and visa versa should be easy to do.

I kind of hope that they might have 2xdvi ports plus a mini display port (or two) to avoid external adapters (especially expensive dual-link dvi ones).

dr. shdw
Nov 17, 2008, 05:26 PM
I kind of hope that they might have 2xdvi ports plus a mini display port (or two) to avoid external adapters (especially expensive dual-link dvi ones).

How exactly would that fit on the PCB? Less it's a dual slot card..

seb-opp
Nov 17, 2008, 05:31 PM
I kind of hope that they might have 2xdvi ports plus a mini display port (or two) to avoid external adapters (especially expensive dual-link dvi ones).

I dont think that will happen, there is a new ATI graphics card out with displayport, HDMI and DVI, Im thinking that will be the norm, or possibly there will be some without the HDMI. I dont think apple will use ones with HDMI anyway, plus Im guessing they will stick with Nvidia.

Displayport can daisy-chain up too 4 monitors, so I can just see Apple justifying only having one DVI onboard on the basis that the displayport offers multi screen support, so two DVI connections are not needed