DOA Mac Pro 4.1

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Vicromono, Dec 5, 2015.

  1. Vicromono macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #1
    Just purchased an early 2009 Mac Pro damaged by the previous owner. Apparently, he forced the CPU into the backplane and bent a pin, shorted out and killed the board. I won the bid on a used board on ebay and if all goes well, I will have $350 invested in a step up from my 1.1. I am not sure what to expect when I reboot. Any advise from anyone with experience in this would be appreciated.
     
  2. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #2
    I have been collecting a few upgrades while searching for a newer mac such as a Sapphire 5870 GPU, OWC 250G PCI SSD. I just need to get it to fire up first. Some have posted the differences in Backplane logic boards as only firmware related and not physical. I am not sure what to expect from this "tested working" 4.1 board. All I can do is run it up the proverbial flag pole and see if she waves/bongs.
     
  3. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #3
    So, I received the backplane board and installed it in a tense and anxious mood. I facetimed my Mac buddy who started me down the Apple "rabbit hole" over twenty years ago with a Performa running at a blistering 25mhz on 64megs of ram. The lights came on and the logo appeared. I was happy. The 4.1 is running very well with a 2.66 Quad-Core, OWC 250g PCI SSD ($127), A used Sapphire 5870 1g graphics card ($75) and 8g of 1066 ram. Next on the agenda is to flash to 5.1 and upgrade the memory and CPU. At this point, I have invested $550 and it has been a lot of fun. Luck was on my side this time. Any upgrade suggestions would be appreciated.
     
  4. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #4
    Now that things have smoothed out and are running solid, I have purchased Windows 10 to run some games unavailable on Mac. Well crap! No boot camp? I am looking into to it. It looks at though I will have to run Windows 8.1 because of lack of support. I am tempted to just load 10 on the MBP 2014 but why did I go through all the trouble to get the "Big Rig" up and running?
     
  5. flehman macrumors regular

    flehman

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2015
    #5
    There are some helpful threads in this forum that discuss the firmware upgrade to 5,1 so you should look those up as you prepare. As far as Windows, I have not used Bootcamp personally but I have heard of many people getting Windows 8 and 10 working on Mac Pros.
     
  6. stjames70 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    #6
     
  7. stjames70 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    #7
    I don't know if you have a dual CPU or single CPU board, but I have a 4,1 flashed to 5,1, with two W5670 Xeon hexacores, a flashed GTX 980, 64 gb of RAM, and a CalDigit USB 3.0/eSATA card that is running Win 10 Pro 64-bit under bootcamp.

    If you can load 8.1 pro into the machine, you can easily upgrade for free to Win 10 pro under the free Microsoft upgrade program at this time. That being said, I must warn you that Win 10 drivers and legacy programs from Win 8.1 may not be fully stable or run at all. We found the hard way that a lot of hardware/software support IT help desks refused to help us after the upgrade to Win 8.1 so I had to spend a lot of time loading drivers/tweaking programs to work with Win 10.

    You may also need to install x64 drivers one at a time from a bootcamp thumb drive. This is nor straightforward, nor is it simple, but you can do it if you take the time.

    Good luck!
     
  8. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #8
    Thank you for your advise. I am running a single cpu with an owc 240pci hd, 8g of ram, (non flashed) Sapphire 5870 gpu. If and when I make the jump to 5.1 I will add 16g of 1333 ram and load Windows on a dedicated 240g Sata SSD I have installed. I have Office 08' for Mac along with the rest of my applications. I will only be running games on Windows - Fallout 4 and whenever Destiny is released. I know it's a weird reason to load Windows but it's also an exercise in "because I can". I am looking forward to saying "I can run Windows on my Mac, can you run Mac on your Windows?". I just recently picked up a bargain 4.1 for my friend ($325) So we are tag teaming mods.
     
  9. adam9c1 macrumors 65816

    adam9c1

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  10. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #10
    I am a CL vulture. They are rare, but they are out there if you look long enough. The problem is that most re-sellers scoop them up first. So, diligence pays off. Some people will put a mac pro out under "apple computer" or "macpro" so it's tricky.
     
  11. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #11
    What is really making me nervous at this time is the thought of bricking it by fouling up an upgrade like the previous owner. I really want to install a Westmere 6-core and attempt the 5.1 upgrade. Is OWC the best bet for CPUs? Newegg? I usually just shop Amazon. I know people use Ebay but I just don't like the way they do business.
     
  12. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #12
    Thanks to anyone taking the time to review my banter. It is truly appreciated. I think the 3680 CPU is the best choice for the money and availability. There are several on ebay for around the $170 price range. I can find 16g of quality 1333 ram for around $99 at several sights but will choose OWC due to the superior support and reputation. Gaming is great as it stands now with the stock 4.1 with the Sapphire 5870 pc version graphics card playing Borderlands 2 and Bioshock but I am having trouble with my controller playing TF2. Tattiebogle's latest driver seems to be nearly impossible to uninstall and downgrade.
     
  13. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #13
    Using a PC graphic card does cause some inconvenience during boot and running multiple monitors. I found an Apple 5770 for $125 (CL). With the spare card I can (try to) flash the PC version Sapphire 5870 to Mac. My friend found an unused key and copy of Windows 7 pro at the Goodwill for less than a buck. That turd just loaded it up and now has two OS systems running smooth. I payed $120 for a copy of Windows 10 that doesn't load and he got one that works for the price of a Snickers bar. !@#$%. BTW, is there a swap or sell area here on this site? And, am I posting in the wrong place?
     
  14. MacVidCards, Jan 10, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2016

    MacVidCards Suspended

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #14
    Win 10 goes on there fine.

    You will have to not listen to Apple trying to tell you that it won't.
     
  15. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #15
    Thank you for the advise.
    I found yet another 4.1 the other day ($400 on CL) and this one is a dual processor running at 2.26Ghz with 16 gigs of ram. After flipping around the GPUs and mother boards and testing each configuration on Cinebench, I have found that there is an actual drop in frames from 30.92fps down to 25.11fps and the GPU swap difference was negligible with a surprising drop of .5 from the Sapphire 5870 under the 5770. CPU tests were a very different story with with the single 2.66 score of 4.76 and the dual 2.26 score of 8.18. So with this new information, the best and most cost effective improvement I can make is to upgrade the CPU.

    Now for the "Sphincter pucker of the day"! After removing the dual processor mother board, I was bringing the original board back into the slots when FLASH! A very visible spark shot from the frame to the mother board. I said to myself at this point, "Jeez, your such a dumb ass". I know the drill and I didn't follow through. Everything is fine but, the stress was enough to wake me up. A fried/toasted/bricked/boat anchored Mac could ruin your whole day.
     
  16. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #16
    Cinebench's GPU test is well known not testing the GPU but the CPU single core performance.

    That's why you move from 2.66 to 2.26 (about 20% slower), and you have a ~20% drop in performance (regardless which GPU installed).
     
  17. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #17
    Wow, people in my area would be asking 2x to 3x as much on CL.

    Granted, "asking" price and "sold" price are two different things, but usually they aren't that far apart.
     
  18. MacVidCards Suspended

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #18
    I wish they would pull it.

    I got 2 (two) emails just today from disgruntled customers for this very reason.

    They have to KNOW their bench is pointless for anything but CPU, why still hand it out with a "OpenGl" test?
     
  19. Surrat macrumors 6502

    Surrat

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    Jun 20, 2014
    Location:
    United States
    #19
    My benchmark choice for cpu is GeekBench, and for GPU, Unigen Heaven and Valley.
     
  20. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #20
    I guess I'd better just jump through the hoops and get geekbench. Cinebench is so easy to install and run but, "you get what you pay for".
    Yes, I've been watching the prices and some are still asking over a grand for a 5.1 but the 3.1 price has dropped to between three and four hundred on average. A 4.1 will sell quick for around five hundred judging on how long the ad is up. Don't buy them to make a buck. I just love to find a good deal. I sold the last one to a neighbor so we can kill each other on TF2. If anyone is on Steam, My name is the same.
     
  21. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #21
    No worries there, no time for that. Not to mention in the past it's been shenanigans for me.

    I only look now from time to time in case there's a dual CPU 5,1 available for stupid low price, in which case I'd upgrade. But the dual CPU 5,1 models are the most coveted and sellers around here want an awful lot for them.
     
  22. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #22
    After purchasing 16GB of 1333 ram and a 3.33Ghz 6 core W3680 I have not been able to upgrade to 5.1 firmware using the tool. My research has me wondering if the boot rom version will not allow it. B08 has been described as one sold in late 09' Mac Pros sold in 2010. I am wondering if I were to rename it, would I be able to go from there or would it cause chaos in the system by not being the described boot rom version being updated.
     
  23. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #23
    4.1-5.1 firmware update issue resolved. #1 I had to remove the PCI SSD running OS 10.11.3 and boot from the SATA drive running 110.7.5. #2 connected to the GT120 GPU and pulled the 5770. #3 Opened Apple Mac Pro 5.1 firmware update on the desktop. The 4.1-5.1 Mac Pro Firmware tool worked. I restarted and held the power button in until the power light started to flash. 5.1 is now displayed in the system folder. Cool!

    Thanks to all who contribute. This is a great forum with tons of really smart guys.
     
  24. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2014
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #24
    Ah, it's good to know that works. So I think the only downside is that you can't downgrade back to B08, but I don't see why you have to do it anyway.
     
  25. Vicromono thread starter macrumors member

    Vicromono

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon
    #25
    I agree. If there is a benefit (to downgrade), I do not know what it is. Besides the obvious CPU and Ram speed, you still get audio sent directly to your monitor. One less wire.
     

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