8 Core with ViewSonic or 4 Core with Cinema and ViewSonic

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by cheaptehker, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. cheaptehker macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    So I am looking into buying a Mac Pro for video, photo, website and podcast editing. I plan on using Final Cut Express, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 and Dreamweaver. I was looking at the 4 core baseline Mac Pro with the Cinema Display and a ViewSonic VA2702W or going for the 8 Core Mac Pro with a ViewSonic VA2702W. I cannot do a b-t-o because I would like to go to the :apple: store in Delaware to save a few hundred dollars. Which one would be better for me?
  2. chaosbunny macrumors 68000


    Mar 11, 2005
    down to earth, far away from any clouds
    I'd go for the 8-core & viewsonic combination. You can always get another screen in a year or two, but you can't get these extra cores so easily.
  3. c:v macrumors regular

    Jan 20, 2010
    To be honest, I don't think that the 8-core will be necessary as FCP will not use more than two cores and Dreamweaver is not very demanding at all. Not sure about Lightroom but for that kind of software, RAM is more important as you display loads of images and edit them.

    I'd go with the Quad 2.8, load up 8 or 12GB of RAM (not from Apple) and buy a much better IPS panel screen. I made the mistake of buying relatively cheap screens and just regret it. Wish I'd have the money now for a Dell Ultrasharp 24". The Cinema displays are nice to look at, but don't compare to professional grade screens. Their adjustability is shockingly lacking and very expensive for what they are. Also, I would highly recommend you'd ignore anything at HD resolution (1080x height) as that's just not enough for professional use. Especially if you are looking at 27"!

    Again, if you can afford the Dell, buy it: http://accessories.euro.dell.com/sna/productdetail.aspx?c=uk&l=en&s=bsd&cs=ukbsdt1&sku=294438
  4. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    Get the quad and a decent display. The quad is faster in all single threaded tasks. If the machine won't suffice your needs any more in a year or so, you can always drop in a 3.33 or 3.46GHz hex-core. Both are faster than the octad in almost every task and go for about $800 these days on ebay.

    In a year from now, prices should drop to $600 to $700. Considering that the octad costs exactly $1000 more than the base quad, you can safe quite some money, especially when you sell the 2.8GHz quad. That would make a $500 upgrade for more performance the $1000 upgrade gets you today.
  5. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    8 cores is a waste of money considering your software.

    the ViewSonic VA2702W uses a TN panel. for the same price you can get a 23" 16:9 IPS monitor, for $100 more a 24" 16:10, all of which have the same resolution as the Viewsonic (1920x1080 or x1200). see NEC EA231WMi, Viewsonic VP2365wb, Dell U2311H, HP ZR24w.
  6. MattDSLR macrumors 6502

    Jan 23, 2011
    Most definitely I would recommend at least 6 cores
    Lightroom is very demanding and it utilizes multicore chips very well
    the more cores the better
    New final cut will be true multicore system as well aperture and photoshop.
    For now only lightroom takes true advantage of all the cores
    so if you thinking of upgrading any of your software to the new one when it comes out, than stick with at least 6 plus cores
    if you can find 2.93 8 core MP 4.1 get it it kills 6 core 3.33 and 12 core 2.66 as well the new 8 core 2.4
    2.4 can be upgraded to either 3.46 westmere 8 core or 3.33 Westmere 12 core
  7. cheaptehker thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    Looking into getting 2 NEC EA231WMi and the quad core
    I do not want a b-t-o because I live in PA where tax is 6% and I was looking at making the 3 hour drive to Delaware to get the Mac Pro to save 6%
  8. MattDSLR macrumors 6502

    Jan 23, 2011
    Than look at 8 core as 4 core will be to slow for you and you will be able to use only 4 memory slots VS 8 on 8 core
    Just think of upgrading memory options will give you more than raw core speed for multicore aps
  9. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    I'd say get the 4 core and the cinema display. The reason why is because I believe the 4 core can be upgraded when the next best thing comes around but the Cinema Display will probably outlive 2 or 3 Mac Pros by the time you'd want to upgrade the display again (I'm guessing OLED or something).
  10. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    there are better displays (per dollar) than the Cinema, so I don't see why the OP should buy that.

    socket 1366 is dead. the fastest option there will ever be is a 3.4GHz 6-core. however, a 2.4 GHz 8-core is not worth the expense, considering his software and the loss in clock speed.
  11. goMac macrumors 603

    Apr 15, 2004
    It's pretty much a no brainer that a version of Final Cut is coming that will support more than two cores. Don't buy a 4 core and get stuck when the new Final Cut comes out. You want a machine that's going to last.

  12. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    I agree that there are better displays out there but they actually cost more than the 27" ACD. IMO the 27" ACD is an excellent display and you cant really find a 27" H-IPS panel with LED backlighting anywhere.

    I know NEC, DELL, Eizo have 26"-30" displays with Wide CCFL backlighting which does produce a much wider color gamut but none of them are LED displays (backlighting gets dimmer every 6-12 months and needs recalibration).

    I just suggested it because I thought the OP had decided on the 27" ACD.
  13. cheaptehker thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    I haven't decided on anything. I get a goverment discount which makes the Cinema Display $949, 4 Core Mac Pro $2,299, and 8 Core Mac Pro $3,199. I have around $3,500-$4,000 to spend on new computer including monitor and everything except software, iPad 16GB, and a Airport Extreme. Figure out how I should spend it. I would be running Final Cut Express 4, And Adobe Creative Suite 5 Design Premium.

    Off topic much?????
  14. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    I never specified 27", and does the OP really need a 27"? there's a glut of quality 23-24" monitors, just buy two of them for the same price as one 27.

    when did LEDs not require recalibration?

    true, CCFL dims over time, but it will still last beyond the life of the computer before it becomes an issue. it might be an issue if the OP likes using displays at full brightness, but I don't think that's the case...
  15. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    3.2 quad: $2660
    3x4GB RAM: $200 from Transintl (ECC), $150 from Crucial (non-ECC)
    2x HP ZR24w: $840 ($100 cheaper if you buy refurbished)

    that leaves you $500 for extra HDDs or SSDs. another $240 gets you 2x8GB RAM if you want 8GB sticks, also from Transintl.

    I think a wide-gamut monitor will only get in the way for web and video work, so I picked the sRGB HP ZR24w over the Adobe RGB, ~$500 HP LP2475w/Dell U2410/Asus PA246Q. you could buy one Adobe RGB monitor and one sRGB monitor, though.
  16. cheaptehker thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    I also said that it needs an iPad and a airport extreme. Plus add 6% tax from Apple around $150 that blows me over budget
  17. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    you said "everything except software, iPad 16GB, and a Airport Extreme"....

    drop one monitor and that leaves you $900 for storage and whatever else you want.
  18. DocNo macrumors member


    Feb 20, 2011
    Yup, with photography apps, you will really appreciate the extra four memory slots over time! You can add a monitor later. The number of memory slots is pretty much fixed with your machine's purchase. Yes, you can theoretically change out the processor daughtercard later if you really wanted to, but it would be cheaper to buy another machine :p

    Apple has a couple of refurbs that are better than 6% - might want to look at that too. I've bought Apple (and other) refurbs with no issues in the past. Get an $80 eBay AppleCare warranty and move on :D
  19. cheaptehker, Feb 20, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2011

    cheaptehker thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    Does this look ok took a little bit of everyones advice:
    :apple: Mac Pro- $2,659
    One 3.2GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon “Nehalem”
    3GB (3x1GB)
    1TB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s hard drive
    ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB
    :apple: iPad 16GB Refurb $429
    :apple: 2xNEC EA231WMi-BK $260.99x2=$521.98
    :apple: Western Digital 2 TB Caviar Green SATA Intellipower 64 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive WD20EARS $89
    :apple: 16GB (4x4GB) DDR3 ECC PC8500 1066MHz SDRAM ECC for Mac Pro & Xserve 'Nehalem' models from OWC $292.99

    Any suggestions or ideas???
  20. mdgm macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2010
    If and that's a big if you're willing to void your warranty and do a CPU upgrade (be warned you risk breaking parts that are expensive to replace) then you might want to take a look at http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1099606

    If the W3670 works (I think it should) then getting the base 2.8 quad, swapping it out for the W3670 and then selling the 2.8 quad CPU could be a good way to go.
  21. cheaptehker thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 1, 2010
    That might be a fun project, but really 2 cores more and having the extra $620, voiding the warranty, then having to sell it, really doesn't seem worth it right out of the box, maybe after I have it and want a speed boost (or after the warranty expires and I have the extra cash laying around)
  22. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    LED displays do need recalibrations but its in years not months as it barely dimms over time. CCFL backlit displays dims over every 6 months time and its very noticeable as well.
  23. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    if it's "very noticeable", then why haven't I noticed, and why are people still using 5 year-old monitors?
  24. goMac macrumors 603

    Apr 15, 2004
    Certainly noticed it on my CCFLs.

    It's harder to notice if you don't have the monitor side by side a newer monitor. I have two 23" Cinema displays of two different ages (same model), and I can tell one is brighter than the other.

    My old Powerbook though has a clearly dimmer display than when I got it. Don't need to hold it next to anything newer to notice. :)

    (I also notice it on my CCFL TV.)
  25. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    Yea I know what you mean. I have a 23" NEC EA231WMI monitor and its newer than my samsung t240HD that I use as a main and its noticeably brighter than my Samsung even though the samsung is at 100% brightness as to my NEC's 80% brightness.

    Same can be said about the 23" ACD that I had a few years back. The first 4-6 months I've used it on 0 notches of brightness but after 6 months I had to use it at around 1 or even 2 notches to match the brightness that it had since I first had it. I added a 20" ACD later on and next to the 23", the 20" was so much brighter.

    I also had the 24" LED ACD as well and that just blew all of those monitors out of the window in terms of brightness. :D

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