I'm an experienced PC builder, but never had the opportunity to play with a Mac Pro (I own a 09 Mini and a 09 MacBook). I've always built my PCs from scratch, so it's sort of annoying to be stuck with Apple's pre-configs Anyhow, any input would be appreciated. My PC's an old Q6600 Quad, 4 GB, Raptor Harddrive, and ATI 4870 Vid Card (Sapphire). It's quite fast enough for my needs (I use CS4, Lightroom II mainly), and the computer is also used to play 720P/1080p videos on my TV via in-wall HDMI cabling). I also have a need for editing AVCHD 1080i videos from my camcorders. AVCHD's a pain to work with on PCs (unless you convert to MPEG-2), and the whole truth to it is I prefer to simply work with AIC in Imovie 09 (I've dealt with the much bigger file sizes via external 1 TB drives). This should eventually change with the arrival of Abobe's Mercury Engine or other similar tech that should finally let us edit native AVCHD without choking computers to death. This is partly WHY I'm not even considering the Core i7 Imac. I want to keep my options open as to which video card I can use once such technology is available. Ideally I'd want an Octo Core, since while I make little use of apps that use multi-cores, I can easily choke my Quad with all the simultaneous stuff I tend to do (like work in Lightroom and CS4 & watch HD episodes on my TV at the same time). Here's what I came up with my budget: My price are inflated due to my being a Canadian , so they're in Can $ : Refurbished 2008 2.8 Octo: 2499$ Intel SSD Gen-2 80 GB: 250$ Flash my Sapphire 4870 & install it on Mac: 0$ (or vice versa, not sure about the exact procedure yet!). Memory Upgrade: Kingston 2 x 4 GB : 320$ Also keep the Apple supplied 2GB for a total of 10GB unless it hurts performance. I'm open to pushing the RAM up to a total of 16GB if I can see benefits from it. LG Blu-Ray Burner: 175$ (I read it's sort of a plain to read the odd Sata ports, but I guess no more than building a computer from scratch .... as long as it doesn't void my 1 year refurbished warranty). I already own 3 x 1 TB WD drives, so no needs to further spend there. Total: 3250$ + Taxes = approx 3600$ Extra Fees: Windows 7 OEM (it's a must that I also install Windows), Ilife 09 (Apple only includes 08 on the refurbished Macs). So , there it is. I can't seem to come up with a better config for that price, so if you see something I don't, please let me know There's always the option of waiting for the new Hexacores, in hopes Apple slashes the prices on refurb 09 models. I don't see much benefit however in waiting for Octo 2.26ghz refurb Nehalems (which are still sold for 3199$) to be dropped at the current pricing of 08 refurb 2.8 octos.