2008 upgrade path

hyram

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 15, 2009
190
0
I currently have a quad 2007 mp, but have a possible good deal on a quad 2008 mp, and I'm wondering about the upgrade possibilities for the 2008 mp. Specifically, the 2008 quad comes with a single quad processor, but the motherboard has 2 sockets. Does the 2008 mp quad come with both heatsinks or would I have to find one of those if I want to use both sockets??? Are there any other potential pitfalls I should be aware of upgrading a 08 quad to oct???
 

J the Ninja

macrumors 68000
Jul 14, 2008
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The "You need to find the heatsink yourself" is probably the biggest one. The other one is that Apple had a lapse of judgement and forgot that the Mac Pro is supposed to subsidize the pro apps and not be sold on a thin margin. As a result, the machine wound up with CPUs that cost around $850 apiece when new. The CPU you need in an Intel Xeon E5462. There is a 2.83Ghz Penryn Xeon with a 1333Mhz FSB, that many people think is the 2008 MP CPU. It is NOT! The E5462 is a different chip, that uses a 1600Mhz FSB. You must get this one. If you get one the other one, the machine won't to boot. Oh yeah, the other reason people mix them up is that the E5462 is hard to find loose, almost all of them wound up in Mac Pros.
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,929
54
England
The heatsinks can be found for around $100. Apple Palace and Mac Palace sell them.

There are two steppings (revisions) of the Xeon E5462. Most on eBay currently seem to be the C0 stepping (SLANT) where the revision is E0 (SLBBN). I don't know what Apple used (i.e if the E0s were available before they shipped) or if it matters if they are different. You are looking at $500-$600 for a used processor Unless you find a bargain. Should be able to get a new one for $800.
 

hyram

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jun 15, 2009
190
0
Thanks for the help guys. Know of anyone that has actually done this???

hyram
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
The heatsinks can be found for around $100. Apple Palace and Mac Palace sell them.

There are two steppings (revisions) of the Xeon E5462. Most on eBay currently seem to be the C0 stepping (SLANT) where the revision is E0 (SLBBN). I don't know what Apple used (i.e if the E0s were available before they shipped) or if it matters if they are different. You are looking at $500-$600 for a used processor Unless you find a bargain. Should be able to get a new one for $800.
IIRC, Apple used the SLANT (C0 steppings), as the E0 parts weren't out when they started production. Not sure if they did a switch later though.

Last I checked, new went for ~$830USD new. They're still a little high, but it might be an option, as it's presumably less expensive to go this route over an '09. Not so sure compared to an '08 Octad, assuming a 2.8GHz model can be located. I'm only aware of 3.2GHz versions available on Apple's refurbished site for $3299USD.
 

gugucom

macrumors 68020
May 21, 2009
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Munich, Germany
From what I have read about the dual CPU Intel chipsets different steppings should not be a fundamental problem, but it can increase undocumented errata. The best would be checking the other CPU which isn't such a big deal if you plan to work on the CPUs anyway. The long handled hex key is sometimes an issue to obtain locally.

I'm wondering if someone has ever upgraded a MP3,1 with two 3,4 GHz X5492 CPUs?
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
From what I have read about the dual CPU Intel chipsets different steppings should not be a fundamental problem, but it can increase undocumented errata. The best would be checking the other CPU which isn't such a big deal if you plan to work on the CPUs anyway. The long handled hex key is sometimes an issue to obtain locally.

I'm wondering if someone has ever upgraded a MP3,1 with two 3,4 GHz X5492 CPUs?
You'd definitely want a matched set to avoid any issues with steppings. So that would mean pulling the existing part in a Quad to get the P/N off it.

AFAIK, no one's done a transplant on the '08's, given the cost of the CPU's. But it would be possible.
 

ZennZero

macrumors member
Mar 21, 2008
85
0
London
AFAIK, no one's done a transplant on the '08's, given the cost of the CPU's. But it would be possible.
I've recently done a bit of research into this, and it looks like the only MP3,1 owners who *might* be able to handle the 3.4GHz Xeon would be existing 3.2Ghz owners. :(

The 2.8/3.0GHz machines had different motherboards and heatsinks, so unless you wanted to replace those parts as well (at which point you might as well buy a new machine), only the 3.2Ghz machine is equipped to handle a 150w TDP part like the X5492.

I doubt anyone could justify the cost of the X5492s for a mere 200Mhz increase in clock speed. And of course there is also the possibility that the logicboard wouldn't recognize its CPUID and refuse to boot.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
I've recently done a bit of research into this, and it looks like the only MP3,1 owners who *might* be able to handle the 3.4GHz Xeon would be existing 3.2Ghz owners. :(

The 2.8/3.0GHz machines had different motherboards and heatsinks, so unless you wanted to replace those parts as well (at which point you might as well buy a new machine), only the 3.2Ghz machine is equipped to handle a 150w TDP part like the X5492.

I doubt anyone could justify the cost of the X5492s for a mere 200Mhz increase in clock speed. And of course there is also the possibility that the logicboard wouldn't recognize its CPUID and refuse to boot.
I never noticed any differing P/N's for the logic boards or coolers. It wouldn't make sense either in financial terms (from Apple's POV). Maybe different firmware was created to make changes to the VR controller settings (allows the VID to be changed), but not the hardware.

If you can give some links or more information to the details, it would help.

Thanks. :)
 

J the Ninja

macrumors 68000
Jul 14, 2008
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I never noticed any differing P/N's for the logic boards or coolers. It wouldn't make sense either in financial terms (from Apple's POV). Maybe different firmware was created to make changes to the VR controller settings (allows the VID to be changed), but not the hardware.

If you can give some links or more information to the details, it would help.

Thanks. :)
The heatsink is definitely different, it has more heatpipes on it, I think:

http://www.welovemacs.com/0761303.html

http://www.welovemacs.com/6614458.html
 

Tom Sawyer

macrumors 6502a
Aug 29, 2007
682
35
Curious about the same thing, but they are ungodly expensive -- $1400 each seems to be the going rate.
x3 here... They SHOULD work as they are the same series, cache etc etc... mighty steep price to take one for the team.

I would LOVE to drop 2 of these babies in my Octomac, that's for sure!!!
 

Tom Sawyer

macrumors 6502a
Aug 29, 2007
682
35
This may be a good way to acquire a pair of X5492's:

Dell Workstation

Buy the workstation, swap your cpu's out for the 3.4's and then sack off the workstation with dual 2.8's for whatever it gets...

Tempting... But that is a surprise that the 2.8's have a different motherboard/PSU than the 3.2's? I wonder what the difference is...
 

TheStrudel

macrumors 65816
Jan 5, 2008
1,133
1
...Apple had a lapse of judgement and forgot that the Mac Pro is supposed to subsidize the pro apps and not be sold on a thin margin. As a result, the machine wound up with CPUs that cost around $850 apiece when new...Oh yeah, the other reason people mix them up is that the E5462 is hard to find loose, almost all of them wound up in Mac Pros.
They may have had a lapse of judgement there, but those of us who bought the machines were pretty satisfied with that lapse of judgement. Unfortunately, it resulted in a lot of teeth gnashing when the 09 machines dropped and we're all hoping that the '10 machines return to a similar "lapse of judgement."
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
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ZennZero

macrumors member
Mar 21, 2008
85
0
London
A different cooler makes more sense than different boards though. But as gugucom indicated, $200 or $230USD (depending on which needed), OUCH!

I'll continue to look, but I'm not spotting different boards between the two models.

Thanks for the heads up, btw. :)
The 3.2GHz mobo is p/n: 661-4676
The 2.8/3.0GHz mobo is p/n: 661-4449

As was suggested above, it may well just be a firmware or EFI change, but I read (on another forum) that there were additional heatsinks and the like on some of the components.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
The 3.2GHz mobo is p/n: 661-4676
The 2.8/3.0GHz mobo is p/n: 661-4449

As was suggested above, it may well just be a firmware or EFI change, but I read (on another forum) that there were additional heatsinks and the like on some of the components.
Interesting.

The only thing that would truly make sense to me (from a HW POV), is the board used in the 2.8 and 3.0GHz models, is the Voltage Regs couldn't handle that CPU. Odd they didn't choose to use the more robust VR parts on all units, but not impossible I guess. The accounting may have made sense at the time, depending on the unit quantities manufactured.

Firmware = EFI btw, as is the SMC.
 

gugucom

macrumors 68020
May 21, 2009
2,136
0
Munich, Germany
Edit:
There is a jump in FSB from 1333 to 1600 in the Harpertown range. But Apple only used the E5462, E5472 and the X5482 CPUs.

Model Speed (GHz) L2 Cache (MB) FSB (MHz) TDP (W)

E5440 2.83 2x6 1333 80
X5450 3.00 2x6 1333 120
E5450 3.00 2x6 1333 80
X5460 3.16 2x6 1333 120
X5470 3.33 2x6 1333 120
E5462 2.80 2x6 1600 80
X5472 3.00 2x6 1600 120
E5472 3.00 2x6 1600 80
X5482 3.20 2x6 1600 150
X5492 3.40 2x6 1600 150

So the TDP jumped from 80 to 150 W which is significant. All MP3,1 had the 5400 Seaburg chipset with 1600 MHz FSB and 800 MHz RAM. The different p/n are definitely not based on different chipsets. Apple used no 5100 San Clemente chipsets which were limited to 1333 FSB. The different p/ns are probably related to different mechanical fixtures of the heat sinks or EFI differences in order to let the fan regulation cope with almost twice the heat.
 

Tom Sawyer

macrumors 6502a
Aug 29, 2007
682
35
Thanks for the info guys... this is a bit disappointing as I've always had in the back of my mind the idea of bumping up to faster CPU's when they came down in price. Going to 3.0's from 2.8's is not worth it, only the 3.4's would really make a worthwhile upgrade for the cost/trouble. Guess it'll be a new machine when the time comes.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
Edit:
There is a jump in FSB from 1333 to 1600 in the Harpertown range. But Apple only used the E5462, E5472 and the X5482 CPUs.

Model Speed (GHz) L2 Cache (MB) FSB (MHz) TDP (W)

E5440 2.83 2x6 1333 80
X5450 3.00 2x6 1333 120
E5450 3.00 2x6 1333 80
X5460 3.16 2x6 1333 120
X5470 3.33 2x6 1333 120
E5462 2.80 2x6 1600 80
X5472 3.00 2x6 1600 120
E5472 3.00 2x6 1600 80
X5482 3.20 2x6 1600 150
X5492 3.40 2x6 1600 150

So the TDP jumped from 80 to 150 W which is significant. All MP3,1 had the 5400 Seaburg chipset with 1600 MHz FSB and 800 MHz RAM. The different p/n are definitely not based on different chipsets. Apple used no 5100 San Clemente chipsets which were limited to 1333 FSB. The different p/ns are probably related to different mechanical fixtures of the heat sinks or EFI differences in order to let the fan regulation cope with almost twice the heat.
I'd forgotten that the E5462/E6472's were 80W. I was thinking 120W for some strange reason.

Definitely explains the different cooler, and need for more robust Voltage Regs. Substantially so on the latter, as it's almost 2x the power output required.
 

gugucom

macrumors 68020
May 21, 2009
2,136
0
Munich, Germany
http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=11938

It looks like Apple may not have made substantial technical changes to the heat sinks and the logic board in the final design. The guys at Hexus could run a pair of 150 W CPUs in a 80 W machine.

The funny thing is that beefier heat sinks with more heat pipes were reported in connection with MP3,1 systems for higher power. I wonder if the heat sinks with fewer heat pipes were prototypes and Apple used the stronger versions in the series.

I guess we need a service manual to identify different parts there. One thing we can see in the linked story is the different heat sink on the chipset compared to the MP1,1. The Seaburg chipset runs much higher RAM frequencies and apparently needed a big heat sink.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,718
2
http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=11938

It looks like Apple may not have made substantial technical changes to the heat sinks and the logic board in the final design. The guys at Hexus could run a pair of 150 W CPUs in a 80 W machine.

The funny thing is that beefier heat sinks with more heat pipes were reported in connection with MP3,1 systems for higher power. I wonder if the heat sinks with fewer heat pipes were prototypes and Apple used the stronger versions in the series.

I guess we need a service manual to identify different parts there. One thing we can see in the linked story is the different heat sink on the chipset compared to the MP1,1. The Seaburg chipset runs much higher RAM frequencies and apparently needed a big heat sink.
I saw that artical yesterday, and it's a bit odd, given the different P/N's used. Obviously the board's VR's can handle the 150W chips, and presumably the coolers are fine with it too, though there's no thermal data to make a comparison with (Apple equiped 3.2's vs. the modded 2.8).

Your idea of a prototype is interesting, but both cooler P/N's are available as replacement parts, so that wouldn't make much sense to me. But a mid-model switch would. The earlier units may have used the smaller cooler (and even the different board). Apple then could have decided to change coolers, and even change the VR's to "beefier" parts to handle the additional load, also causing a P/N change. I never did locate two different logic board P/N's being available as replacement parts, but I may not have found it, or the places I checked were out of stock, and removed the item from the site.

I have seen this with one of my favorite suppliers for RAID cards (ewiz.com), as their stock shifts quickly. When out for some time, they pull the item from the site, and add it back if they get a shipment in.