Good deal for a 4,1 Mac Pro?

12dylan34

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 3, 2009
877
3
Sorry for another one of these threads, but I'm having a tough time making a decision.

I've found a used early 2009 Mac Pro 4,1 with the following specs:

8 cores at 2.27 GHz
12 GB RAM
NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 512MB (Isn't that pretty bad?)
1 TB+640GB hard drives

for $2099.

These things are getting high 11,000's on Geekbench, which is slightly lower than I would expect a spec-bumped high end iMac to be after the expected update with ML (at least that's what people on the iMac threads think now).

I'm a student and would be using it primarily for motion graphics. Any motion graphic designers out there that can give their opinion on the better speed and the screen of the iMac over the upgradability of the Mac Pro? I'm fairly concerned with the graphics card in this machine and viewport performance in Cinema 4D. I wish that I could afford a better machine, but my budget is $2250 or less and I need to buy a new computer soon.

Thanks!
 

RoelJuun

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2010
427
168
Netherlands
Though it's not a slow computer cpu-wise, I would hold it off. You want a new graphics card, as you already state, the nVidia card is not fast. And currently the ATI card is still really expensive for its age and speed. The 12 gigs ram is nice but ram is cheap, you can have 24 or 32 gigs for little money.

But the main problem is the clock speed of the quad cores. It is only fast when rendering, in single threaded applications it will be butchered by higher clocked processors. You'd better find a refurb six core or find a refurb quad core and buy a six-core and do a swap.
 
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12dylan34

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 3, 2009
877
3
Though it's not a slow computer cpu-wise, I would hold it off. You want a new graphics card, as you already state, the nVidia card is not fast. And currently the ATI card is still really expensive for its age and speed. The 12 gigs ram is nice but ram is cheap, you can have 24 or 32 gigs for little money.

But the main problem is the clock speed of the quad cores. It is only fast when rendering, in single threaded applications it will be butchered by higher clocked processors. You'd better find a refurb six core or find a refurb quad core and buy a six-core and do a swap.
Thanks! Yeah, I guess that I never thought about single core performance. The 2.27 is actually slower than my early 2008 MBP that I'm using now (2.4 dual), so I should definitely hold off.
 
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RoelJuun

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2010
427
168
Netherlands
No the Mac Pro's quad cores are faster compared to your MBP, the Mac Pro utilizes a newer processor architecture and your MPB is only a dual core processor.

Still…you get the point ;)
 
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