2008 MacPro Customization

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Standard, Mar 5, 2011.

  1. Standard, Mar 5, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2011

    Standard macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #1
    I own a 2008 Mac Pro 3,1, 2.83GHz/8Core/2GBDDR2/320GB(Unsure of RPM)/8800GT.

    My primary use for this machine is Web Development. I use Adobe Creative Suit extensively. I am going to be upgrading to CS5 very shortly. I will soon be using this machine for Modo 501, by Luxology.

    Windows 7 and Ubuntu will be installed as well, (Bootcamp and VMWare Fusion). Casual gaming with latest titles include; Starcraft 2, World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, Counter-Strike: Source, Crysis, Call of Duty, etc.

    I've heard that the ATI Radeon HD 5870 and ATI Radeon HD 5770 will work on my machine, is this true for both video cards?

    Depending on which one I decide to purchase, can I buy from Amazon and "flash" them myself to work for OS X? What does this entail, is flashing very difficult? Am I restricted to purchasing from Apple if this works?

    How much RAM should I upgrade to? 6GB is reasonable for my price point, but I will bump to 8 if needed.

    I've heard that my Hard Drive is slowing my machine down. What are my options. I need to make this machine peak.

    Thanks.
     
  2. GoCubsGo, Mar 5, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2011

    GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #2
    I have the same machine but with 16gb of ram. I know it isn't as fast as "modern" day CPUs, but it is plenty fast for everyday heavy use. You can upgrade to the 5770, you'd have to flash it. If you don't want to mess with that, go for the Quadro FX 5600. Check to make sure real world use shows it's better than the 8800gt.
     
  3. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    With the 5770, is it a difficult task to complete?

    Anyone have experience or comments on upgrading more components?
     
  4. KoL macrumors member

    KoL

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    Puerto Rico
    #4
    You can get an Apple version of the 5770 and you don't have to flash it. I have the same machine, upgraded the RAM to 18 GB and got the 5770. I work with Adobe CS and I'm happy with it. I don't plan to update anytime soon.
     
  5. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    CS or between 5?

    How would my system with the 5770 and 6gb ram work with CS5?
     
  6. KoL macrumors member

    KoL

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    Location:
    Puerto Rico
    #6
    CS5
    It will work fine.
     
  7. NoManIsland macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    #7
    I have the same model and the best upgrade you can make is the addition of one or two SSDs. The processor in the 2008 isn't really the limiting factor, as it's plenty capable of anything CS5 can throw at it, but having a SSD for a boot drive and a small (40GB) SSD for a scratch disk will work wonders. I recommend the OWC drives. Of course, definitely upgrade your RAM: I'm running 12GB and that seems enough to satisfy Logic and Photoshop for anything I throw at them.
     
  8. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

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  9. elvisizer macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 29, 2003
    Location:
    San Jose
    #9
    yeah, i've got the same machine with 10 GB of RAM and the apple 5870 with an SSD for the boot drive. silent, and fast as hell in photoshop and logic.
    RAM will only get more expensive as time goes on (since FB-DIMMS are not very common) while SSD's are coming down in price, so if you have to choose between more RAM or an SSD, go with more RAM now and the SSD later.

    it's not bad for gaming under windows, either- I've got windows 7 booting off of an OCZ revodrive x2.
     
  10. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #10
    Thanks for the great insight.

    Did you purchase your RAM from Crucial?

    Can I purchase the GPU from Amazon to save money? Is flashing difficult?
     
  11. elvisizer macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 29, 2003
    Location:
    San Jose
    #12
    i used OWC ram.
    Flashing a card isn't real difficult- it helps to have access to a windows machine and you need to be comfortable with the command line. you also will be totally on your own as far as support- apple and the GPU vendor will not be helping you with problems.
    I've flashed a 4870 for my pro last year and had zero problems (and then sold it to a PC user at work when the apple/evga GTX 285 came out), but this year I bought the apple official 5870 since I didn't want to have to worry about any weirdness. it all comes down to money and time- i had more of the former than the latter this year . . . .
     

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