Buying a 4,1->5,1 now. Good?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by markovchain, Mar 31, 2018.

  1. markovchain macrumors member

    Mar 30, 2015
    I have been going back and forth for a few years... looking around Apple refurbished or eBay 5,1.
    It’ was very expensive in the range of $3000 for 12-core 16GB memory

    Now when the 2010 model is vintage, got a deal $900 for this configuration:
    mac pro 4,1 flashed to 5,1
    2x 3.33 6-core
    32GB ram
    Raid card and 256GB SSD
    ATI 5870

    I am a data analyst and need to try out different cpu-gpu programming approaches. I am also interested in 6,1 but it is a closed system, whereas 5,1 sounds a good match because I could install Nvidia and AMD cards to test Cuda and OpenCL.

    However, this machine is almost 10 years and no more hardware repair at Apple. The software support will probably end in one years; I could hang on for another two years like el cap on my mba

    Apart from $900, I plan to upgrade to 128GB memory and buy a few gpus. So this add up to over $2000.

    If I miss this again, I might just bother the linux as a development server and keep using my mba as the front end and office work. However, I like to concentrate on the maths, coding and gpu programming, and less on linux admin etc. Time is running against me.

    Also, I don’t have the money to pay 8k plus for mMP.

    With imperfect knowledge about that machine, limited support and two grams investment, what should I do?
  2. splifingate macrumors 6502


    Nov 27, 2013
    Love my 5,1 with MacOS, but I also love my Dell T5500 with Win10 . . .

    . . . paid USD300 for the Dell, USD2K for the 5,1 and upgraded both far past my potential capabilities.

    I don't regret any of it.

    Waiting for the next-best/right thing usually leaves one wanting.

    If beholden to necessity, identify your usage, then frame your budget. Past all that, just do what you want to enjoy what you have :)

    Regards, splifingate
  3. frou macrumors 6502


    Mar 14, 2009
    Build the headless Linux box. Seeking out a vintage Mac for this purpose is square peg / round hole.
  4. markovchain thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 30, 2015
    Thanks all for feedback.

    I am now searching used Dell Precision workstations in eBay. It's amazing that gives you five or more PCIe 3.0 slots for any type of GPUs.

    Now the plan is confirmed: Linux on the server side; Keep my mba (possibly upgrade to 13" quad core next year?).

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