2006 Mac Pro Worth It?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by CyberCat, Nov 16, 2010.

  1. CyberCat, Nov 16, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010

    CyberCat macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2005
    #1
    I have a friend selling his old 2006 Mac Pro 1,1 for $1000. It's a single quad CPU @ 2.66GHz with 2GB (2x1GB) RAM. NVIDIA 7300 GT, Superdrive and 320GB HDD. No wireless.

    I guess I have two questions really, first is this even good value? And secondly is it worth bothering getting a machine this old? As far as I know I could upgrade the graphics to the new Radeon 5870 for $450 and have maybe get an Apple store to install AirPort and Bluetooth for $50 and do a ram upgrade to maybe 8GB for $300. Maybe even go totally crazy with a second CPU tray and CPU upgrade. What do you think, good or bad cost efficiency? Would it make more sense to save up and just get a base 2010 model? How about longevity? Think this machine would be able to handle modern software for another 2-4 years?
     
  2. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

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    #2
    Suggest you pass on this one. Only draw back on the 2006/7 is it's 32bit EFI. Look for a 2008 model and 2 processors. This way you should be set for a few years. What would you do with it IF you bought it? The price is ok. Snow leopard will probably the last update you could install on it if Lion goes strictly 64 bit.
     
  3. CyberCat thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2005
    #3
    Thanks bearcatrp. Usage would be about 35% video editing under OS X with Avid Media Composer or Final Cut and about 65% under Windows 7 for graphics and music work. (Photoshop, After Effects, Cubase, etc.) The main reason I'm looking at a Mac Pro in the first place is to run Final Cut properly.
     
  4. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

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    #4
    Definitely pass on it. If you can afford a 2009/10, do it. Keep your eyes on apple refurb, save some cash and get the same warranty as new.
     
  5. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #5
    I wouldn't buy that machine.

    I have one of them (2006 1,1 but with 3870 graphics, 5 gb mem, and several big hard drives. I haven't run Avid on it, but I have run FCP, and it's fine. Not great, but fine. And it's never failed in the 4 years I've had it. No complaints.

    The thing is -- look at what you're saying about upgrades. Spend $1000, then you're thinking about nearly $1000 more to upgrade it. And as bearcatrp says, it could be that with Lion, everything will have to be 64 bit.

    When you're at roughly $2k, you're within spitting distance of the base Mac Pro 2010 -- which is a far better machine.

    I just bought one (having told myself for months that I wouldn't), and am moving my 1,1 to my other work site where it won't get heavy use.
     
  6. CyberCat thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2005
    #6
    Excellent point, I agree with you completely. Thanks for your advice guys.
     
  7. mrsir2009 macrumors 604

    mrsir2009

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    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #7
    Nah, with only 2GB of RAM it'd be hard doing video editing.
     
  8. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #8
    I don't think they made a single Quad MP in 2006, it's probably dual 5150's :)

    I bought one very similar, and upgraded it, it was a fun project that didn't cost too much.

    Here's what I started with:

    - Dual 5150's @ 2.66 Ghz Mac Pro 2006 1,1
    - 2GB DDR2 FB-DIMM 667mhz RAM
    - 250GB HDD
    - nVidia 7300GT 256mb
    - Superdrive

    This is what I've now ended up with after my upgrades:

    - 2 x Quad Xeon X5355's @2.66 overclocked to @3.2ghz - 1.313v FSB@1600mhz
    - 12GB DDR2 FB-DIMM Kingston RAM @800Mhz
    - Sapphire 5870 1GB + XFX 5970 2GB Crossfirex 850/1200
    - SATA III 6GB/s + USB 3.0 Asus U3S6
    - Bluetooth 2.1 + Airport 802.11n
    - 2 x 64GB OCZ Vertex 2E SSD's RAID 0 - Mac OS X 10.6.4
    - 60GB Crucial C300 6GB/s - Windows 7 Pro x64
    - 1.5TB WD Green - Mac
    - 1.0TB WD Green - NTFS
    - Liteon Blu-Ray R/W x12
    - Apple 1000w PSU
    - 5.25" 450 PSU
     
  9. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    #9
    neckarb -- that's sweet.

    How difficult was it to do the CPU swap? I've built many PCs over the years, and know the drill for working with processors. But I've never even had a look at the heatsinks etc. in my 1,1.
     
  10. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #10
    If you know how to swap processors, you know enough to do it in a Mac Pro 1,1 literally the process is exactly the same as I've ever gone through in other computers, except for removing the little metal cover over the heatsinks. It's really easy to do, honestly, if you know what your doing with other processors you don't need a guide. You might need a long screw driver but other than that, it's the exact same process. :)
     
  11. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #11
    With the budget you mention ($1000 base + $x00 upgrades), I'd get a brand new 2009 model with 1-year Apple warranty for $1650:
    http://www.costcentral.com/proddetail/Apple_Mac_Pro/MB871LLA/U83343/

    It is a much faster architecture, so despite being the same clock speed it will be much faster. It will include bigger hard drive, bluetooth 2.1, faster video, faster optical drive, a new aluminum keyboard, larger and faster RAM, bigger cache, Snow Leopard... I could go on and on.
     
  12. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    #12
    Great, thanks. I might try it. Online I found "new pull" x5355s for about $350 each.
     
  13. CyberCat thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2005
    #13
    Yeah that seems like a pretty good deal. I'd still like to install the 5870 and maybe a couple more GB of ram so I'd probably be spending about $2000-$2100 every thing said and done. How does the 2009 model compare to the 2010? If I get the 2010 model from Apple I can save $250 on the 5870 upgrade but I have to pay sales tax if I buy from Apple. It'd be about $3000 for the base 2010 model + 5870 BTO upgrade after sales tax.
     
  14. ActionableMango, Nov 17, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010

    ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #14
    The differences are listed here:
    http://www.everymac.com/systems/app...-2010-westmere-early-2009-nehalem-models.html

    In a nutshell though, the differences are:
    • Much better video card (but you are changing it out anyway)
    • CPU speed faster
    • Ability to upgrade to Westmere processors
    • Wi-Fi included
    • Slightly larger hard drive

    It doesn't seem worth ~$800 to me.
     
  15. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #15
    If you look for engineering samples on ebay, you might get them even cheaper, I got both my x5355's for $370 total!
     
  16. speedfr0g macrumors newbie

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    Feb 16, 2010
    #16
    Hi neckarb

    I also upgraded a 2x2 @2.66 to a 2x4 but @3ghz rather than 2.66ghz
    I am still interested in you explaining how you achieved your overclocking

    Thanks
     
  17. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #17
    Well there's two ways of over clocking (conveniently one in windows and one in osx) In OSX you wan't Zdnet clock utility, works, fine, but I couldn't figure out how to get it to set the clock speed at startup, but as I don't really need the overclock in osx it dosent matter, In windows I used a tool called Systool, to increase the FSB, in order to get the best clock speed you want 800mhz RAM, as increasing the FSB increases the speed the RAM is running at so taking 667mhz up becomes unstable when the FSB hits about 387, but if you use 800mhz then it can go up to about 406mhz before becoming unstable, as a result I was able to take my 2.66ghz to 3.25 :) Very pleased with the increased speed and for gaming and such it makes a big difference. I'm not sure how far you could take your'e 3ghz, I'm assuming they are X5365's :) In which case I suppose judging by my overclock you'd be able to take it to 3.59Ghz! That would be cool :)

    Enjoy.
     
  18. Atomic101 macrumors member

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    Jul 19, 2010
    Location:
    Nottingham
    #18

    Very interesting I have a 2008 Dual Quad ZDnet is unstable after 3.15Ghz because of the 800mhz ram -could I use 1066 ECC DDR2 to achieve Higher speeds ?

    regards

    Andy
     
  19. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #19
    Theoretically yes! when you push up the FSB your pushing the RAM up aswell, so faster Ram means that it's easier to push the speed up, however there is also an FSB limit for the CPU, for mine it's about 400Mhz (1600mhz) so anything over that regardless of the RAM is a push, but I see no reason why you couldn't push yours further with faster RAM, the RAM will initially be downclocked to 800mhz but as the FSB increases so will the speed of the RAM. :)

    Edit: I just noticed, 2008 Mac Pro's, like 2006 I believe use FB-DIMM DDR2, and there is no 1066 FB-DIMM DDR2 RAM :(
     
  20. biggd macrumors 6502

    biggd

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    Location:
    Calgary
    #20
    Dell sells a similarly spec'd system for $500, windows 7 and all new parts. double the ram and double the hdd.

    Best to back away. Buy something newer, install an ssd
     
  21. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #21
    Buuuut Dell's dosen't have two CPU sockets, support for Xeons, and most importantly it's not a Mac.
     
  22. biggd macrumors 6502

    biggd

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    Calgary
    #22
    i was just trying to put into context that your friends Mac is over priced
     
  23. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #23
    I disagree, I think the point you were making is that all Macs are overpriced compared to PC's for a Mac, his friends Mac is reasonably priced.
     
  24. CyberCat thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2005
    #24
    Thanks, I can certainly appreciate the value comparison here. I suppose the real issue is that since I need to run a few Mac-exclusive apps it really rules out most commodity PC vendors excluding perhaps the late Psystar Corp. Even if I went the "Hack Pro" route I would not be particularly comfortable with it both due to its somewhat dubious legality and since this is a machine that provides me my livelihood I feel more comfortable using something backed by a service guarantee in case the worst should happen.
     
  25. neckarb macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2007
    #25
    Yeah that does make sense if you want the guarentee, but if your looking for a Mac don't settle for something else...
     

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