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Old Jul 1, 2013, 04:25 PM   #1
driessmulders
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Upgrade 2009 Mac Pro 2,26 8-core or buy new iMac i7?

I currently have a 2009 2.26Ghz 8-core Mac Pro with 6gb ram and ATI Radeon HD 4870. I do a lot of video editing and after effects work. I'm finding this system is becoming a bit slow and I'm thinking of upgrading this system or buying a new iMac i7 3.4ghz with 2gb GeForce GTX 680mx. ( upgrading ram later).

Upgrading my current system would include GeForce GTX 680 Mac edition, 32gb ram and a larger display. (Currently using a 23" Cinema Display).

The other option is selling the Mac Pro (current bid €1850,- including display and fcp studio 3) and buying the new iMac.

I'm looking for advice. Will I gain much performance when I buy the iMac? When I choose to upgrade my current system, how many years will I add to the life of my already 4 year old machine?

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by driessmulders; Jul 1, 2013 at 05:23 PM.
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Old Jul 1, 2013, 06:35 PM   #2
BJonson
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You would be crazy to get rid of your mac pro since they are never going to make one again. The new mac pro is a glorified mac mini. Upgrade that sucker. Get what you can afford now and then wait for the prices to drop on the 3.4 six core cpus and upgrade again later or do it now. You can also stick up to 128gb of ram in that puppy. I just picked up that same computer you have from ebay and I only paid $850 so that is all you will get, maybe. Besides the imacs have not been upgraded to Haswell yet so I would at least wait for that. Still have not seen an imac reach 24,000 geekbench and that is what you can get with just dropping in new chips.

----------

By the way, I upgraded mine with a sonnett tempo ssd pcie card and put a 840 pro in it and it screams. That card is only $150. It holds 2 SSDs. You can get the Tempo Pro SSD which is a little faster than that for $300. The non pro did me fine.
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Old Jul 1, 2013, 06:41 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by BJonson View Post
You would be crazy to get rid of your mac pro since they are never going to make one again. The new mac pro is a glorified mac mini.
Funny how you can say that when the product hasn't event been released yet and there have been no review either. All you are doing is spreading FUD.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 02:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
I currently have a 2009 2.26Ghz 8-core Mac Pro with 6gb ram and ATI Radeon HD 4870. I do a lot of video editing and after effects work. I'm finding this system is becoming a bit slow and I'm thinking of upgrading this system or buying a new iMac i7 3.4ghz with 2gb GeForce GTX 680mx. ( upgrading ram later).

Upgrading my current system would include GeForce GTX 680 Mac edition, 32gb ram and a larger display. (Currently using a 23" Cinema Display).

The other option is selling the Mac Pro (current bid 1850,- including display and fcp studio 3) and buying the new iMac.

I'm looking for advice. Will I gain much performance when I buy the iMac? When I choose to upgrade my current system, how many years will I add to the life of my already 4 year old machine?

Thanks in advance!
Hi driessmulders You can try adding more ram and SSD, those would improve the speed. 6 gig ram is really slow and shorthanded for video editing. You will need at least 24g or more ram. Anolther option is you may want to try upgrading the cpu to 2.93ghz 8 core or the 12 core 3.33ghz. About the iMac, I could not comment on that but if you have friends where you can try out their iMacs for a hands on experience. That's what I usually do before buying new machines by trying out the machine first. Basing it on paper may be hard. I have a 2008 2.8ghz 8 core Mac Pro and also have a 2.4ghz 8 core Mac Pro. The 2.4ghz, though has a lower clock speed , is faster than the 2008 Mac Pro.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 02:40 AM   #5
malana
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6 GB RAM only?

upgrade to 32 GB and it will fly. especially after effects, it will finally be able to work with all cores. forget about the imac.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 02:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
When I choose to upgrade my current system, how many years will I add to the life of my already 4 year old machine?
With upgraded CPUs, RAM and decent CUDA capable graphics card, I'd say another 3-4 years.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 03:21 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by brand View Post
Funny how you can say that when the product hasn't event been released yet and there have been no review either. All you are doing is spreading FUD.
He is spreading FUD, but I would keep in mind that going for either the upcoming mac pro or imac may force him into different storage solutions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
I'm looking for advice. Will I gain much performance when I buy the iMac? When I choose to upgrade my current system, how many years will I add to the life of my already 4 year old machine?

Thanks in advance!
Depends on how quickly your requirements escalate. For After Effects if you use a lot of layers, that system is way too low on ram. For After Effects I wouldn't go lower than 16GB. It depends on how you set cores for rendering. I haven't tested setting all logical. If you wanted to try that you would want at least 32GB as 2 x 16 logical = 32 @ 2GB /core. Scratch disks are another option, but I generally say ram first as it's fastest. You would want more than 6 with a new machine anyway. The gpu you have is still probably supported by AE for most functions. It's not supported by the raytracer, which seems to be an implementation of NVidia's technology.

By the way, if you're comfortable doing a cpu upgrade, you could always keep an eye out for some of the 2.93 cpus at a cheap price. They're still reasonably fast by current standards. With an imac budget for storage updates. If you don't go with the imac, I suggest NEC as my current favorite display brand in terms of budget to quality ratio.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 05:19 AM   #8
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Video editing with 6gb of ram?

Plenty of juice in that '09 if you choose to utilize it....
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 05:26 AM   #9
driessmulders
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Thank you for the very helpful responses! I guess I will stick with the Pro. I know my current 6GB is a joke for AE. I have been to lazy to upgrade.

When I upgrade it to 32gb 1066mhz and in a later stage I will upgrade the processors to 3,33 hex, do I have to replace the ram with 3300mhz?

I'm sure I will come up with more questions but you guys have been of great help so far. The reason I was looking at the iMac is because it's a powerful computer and nice large screen in one. But it's good to know I can expand the life of my pro with a few years.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 05:58 AM   #10
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I just upgraded my dual quad 2.26ghz to dual quad 2.93ghz for AUD$320 for the pair. I've noticed a huge jump in speed over the old CPUs (rendering 3D proteins), ~35% faster than before. I have 32GB RAM installed and am currently sticking with my ati 4870. I plan on a 680gtx in 6 months or so.

If I were you, I'd bump the RAM and do the CPUs. In 2 years or so if you feel like it you can bump them to hex cores, but at the moment they're a bit too pricey for my liking.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 06:40 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
When I upgrade it to 32gb 1066mhz and in a later stage I will upgrade the processors to 3,33 hex, do I have to replace the ram with 1333mhz?
Not necessarily. Performance difference isn't worth it. But if you want it bad, buy 1333 memory now. It will work with your current CPUs @1066.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 02:43 PM   #12
driessmulders
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Thanks guys,

I'm actually exited to upgrade this puppy. I already have the SSD as boot drive so I'm going to do it this way: first the 32GB RAM then GPU (thinking of GeForce GTX 680 Mac Edition) then I buy a nice screen and when the time comes that I find the cpu's becoming slow for my needs I will upgrade these (although the idea of doing this myself scares me a bit).

Thanks for your help and suggestions.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 04:22 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
...and when the time comes that I find the cpu's becoming slow for my needs I will upgrade these (although the idea of doing this myself scares me a bit).
If you are concerned that you might fry your 2009 MP while swapping the processors, you may consider this upgrade service on eBay. It's not cheap by any means and no idea how long it'll be available, but it's an alternative for upgrading CPUs on 2009 dual-processor MP.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 04:27 PM   #14
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There is also the full tray swap from OWC. Real expensive but arguably the safest route possible for non techies. Best of course is 2010 flash and dual 3.33GHz - 3.46GHz 6-cores. I mean, if you are going to do it, do it. You may just be happy with GPU, RAM and SSD though. Do those first.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 04:35 PM   #15
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Upgrade.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 05:22 PM   #16
MacMadness
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I vote for the upgrade.

In the process of upgrading my 2009 2x2.26 8-core but sticking with 2009
2x2.93 processors. (and 4.1)
Been warned by my tech at the local authorized Apple repair center and my friend who is a genius with electronics
(he has restored 25 vintage stereo pieces for me)
that the voltage difference between the 5.1 flashed 3.33/3.46 hex cores
and the 2009 4.1 OEM CPU's can make the main logic board unstable.

I know many have upgraded their 2009 machines to 5.1'a but the warnings were stern enough to scare me off.

Already running a 480G PWC 6G extreme SSD (boot) and 2 480g Accelsior PCI express drives
(Scratch and Work drives for PS).
The other 3 SATA bays have 4TB black Caviar drives for lighter duty work and data backups.
Also upgraded the video card to Radeon 5770. (much more responsive than the 512MB card)

Currently running 32GB of 1066 ram but will bump it up to 96GB. (for the really big Photoshop jobs).
Will report back on performance boost after the upgrades are complete if anyone is interested...
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 05:48 PM   #17
driessmulders
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I'm doing research like a madman. I'm seeing the 2,93ghz quad CPUs going for around 90 bucks on ebay (used). Does anyone have experience buying used CPUs on ebay? If I could buy those for these prices there's no reason to wait with the CPU upgrades!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacMadness View Post
Will report back on performance boost after the upgrades are complete if anyone is interested...
Yes please.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 06:09 PM   #18
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Chuck two six cores in it.
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Old Jul 2, 2013, 07:08 PM   #19
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[QUOTE=driessmulders;17525704]I'm doing research like a madman. I'm seeing the 2,93ghz quad CPUs going for around 90 bucks on ebay (used). Does anyone have experience buying used CPUs on ebay? If I could buy those for these prices there's no reason to wait with the CPU upgrades![COLOR="#808080"]

I bought mine from this seller. ($250.00 for the pair) My friend who restores my stereo gear and has also works on computer/servers for some of his clients has done business with this outfit and recommended them. Hoping he can install mine over the holiday weekend...

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Intel-Xeon-X...item58a194006e (outfit is called Metsales out of Carollton TX)

Hope this is helpful info.
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Old Jul 3, 2013, 01:24 PM   #20
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I bought mine from this seller. ($250.00 for the pair) My friend who restores my stereo gear and has also works on computer/servers for some of his clients has done business with this outfit and recommended them.
Thanks MacMadness, very helpful info. That seller looks great and has a nice price. As I'm living in Europe I think its best to buy from a European seller to avoid added customs costs.

I found these in the UK: http://www.ebay.nl/itm/Intel-QUAD-CO...#ht_1018wt_922

Does one of you guys have experience with replacing Mac Pro CPUs yourself? Before I went Mac about 10 years ago, I used to build my own PC's so I have some distant experience. But what I'm reading on the Internet is that these Mac Pro upgrades are a little tricky because of the CPU lids.
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Old Jul 3, 2013, 02:16 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driessmulders View Post
Thanks MacMadness, very helpful info. That seller looks great and has a nice price. As I'm living in Europe I think its best to buy from a European seller to avoid added customs costs.

I found these in the UK: http://www.ebay.nl/itm/Intel-QUAD-CO...#ht_1018wt_922

Does one of you guys have experience with replacing Mac Pro CPUs yourself? Before I went Mac about 10 years ago, I used to build my own PC's so I have some distant experience. But what I'm reading on the Internet is that these Mac Pro upgrades are a little tricky because of the CPU lids.
Congrats on your new machine. You may want to check out these sites on upgrading the CPU of a 2009 Mac Pro

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2800/u...lem-mac-pro/10

http://www.macobserver.com/tmo/artic...cessor_upgrade
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