How much should I save for a Mac Pro? Or should I go with an iMac?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by fs454, Dec 7, 2007.

  1. fs454 macrumors 68000

    Dec 7, 2007
    Los Angeles / Boston
    So my first Mac is a 15" 2.4ghz MBP with the 8600m GT...Best thing i've ever owned. I use FCS2 and Logic heavily for video and audio stuff, along with other things that really make this thing the best lappy i've ever touched. It's way lighter than others and it looks amazing...

    So, I want a desktop to replace my PC. I currently have a home-built rig that used to be very nice(Athlon X2 4400+, 2GB DDR, 7800GTX 512mb), but now I seriously need a Mac in its place, as it doesn't get any use anymore.

    I already have a Dell 2407WFP, and $2000 saved in the bank. I figure I can get more money for the desktop and another Dell XPS M170 laptop that i'm also selling. My question is, how much do you think I should save for a Mac Pro?

    I'm definately waiting till the update, and being used to building PCs for OEM prices and getting amazing deals, this is hard for me, but I really want an upgradeable Mac. I'm going to want some serious power, but I can't see spending $4000 on it(but $3500 maybe?). I figure i'll do the RAM from Newegg and pop in a couple 500 gig drives, but do you think it'll still be as rediculously overpriced as the current MP, or is that because it hasn't been updated so the prices are still high from long ago.

    I was also considering a 24" iMac. With this, I could run dual 24" monitors because of my current one and the iMac's screen, but I wouldn't be as free to upgrade things as much and it wouldn't be as powerful. I really like both options but I feel the Mac Pro will serve me better...

    Does anyone ahve any recommendations or input? I know i guess it's hard seeing that there's no info out on the new stuff yet, but I'm trying to shape my whole christmas plan and stuff.

    Sorry this post is probably pretty messy, Thanks for helping if you do, haha
  2. ktbubster macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2007
    I can't say much on this, as I don't have a macpro, but i've been looking around for deals and the like lately because my mom is due to replace her g4 and our onl real option is the macpro (needs upgradability so my dad can keep it going for years and years... basically a tower is the only real option and my mom hates the glossy screen on the imac anyway) ... if you can wait, I would wait till the update ofcourse, but if you can wait longer, I'd try to see and wait till they show up in the refurb store, it may be worth it to save a couple hundo. Also.. a decent option for saving money would be to get one of the mac pros in the refurb store now, or find one once the new ones are updated, you could probably find some good deals on the current models once those come out. And I know the tech is about 1.5 years old, but if you are upgrade crazy and into working on stuff yousrelf, maybe that would be a good option.

    I have a feeling the prices will drop slightly when the updates are released or they will just have A LOT of extra stuff packed in there for the price. Chances are you could grab whatever the newest bottom line or midline though and upgrade everything yourself. The new update bottom line will probably be a crazy good machine, probaby the best bang for your buck and just add ram like crazy, I bet you could spend until 3k at the store... perhaps find a student in your family to buy it for you........? hehe. Call it a christmas gift and you culd just "happen" to give them the exact same amount in cash for christmas hehe.

    goodluck! :)
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    You can get a new LCD and use if with the MBP, along with a external keyboard and mouse -- that will give you iMac performance.

    Face it the MBP is essentially the same as the iMac, so getting an iMac to go with the MBP is a duplication of equipment and cash expenditures.

    If you need more expansion and performance the Mac Pro is the way to go, or if the MBP currently suits performance wise -- max the memory on it an use it with an external LCD.


    The Mac Pro is a tad behind the curve, but you can expect the new one to be expensive and competitively priced to a high end Workstation. and the same price it is now, which will make it a decent Open-GL box for 3d, and will likely still suck as a DX10 gaming machine.

    You really don't have to spend $4k on the Mac Pro, a $2k refurb Mac Pro and some of the equipment off the current PC tower should about double your CPU number crunching and give you the expansion you need.
  4. anotherarunan macrumors 6502

    Sep 18, 2007
    London, United Kingdom (UK)
    another option is just to wait til macworld, where the price (im guessing) is quite likely to drop, then weigh up your options, and make sure you have a look at refurb macpro's - because obviously you get the best value for your money.

    but i agree essentially with what the other poster said, an imac is essentially like a MBP, if you want more power, go for the macpro, if not, get the imac and max it out.
  5. Schtumple macrumors 601


    Jun 13, 2007
    Don't go with an iMac, mac pro it all the way, well, once they get updated at macworld that is...
  6. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    Based on what Apple were offering with the original Mac Pro, current prices and how the rest of the mac range currently looks, it is logical to assume that the base Mac Pro could very well be something like the following for $2,500.

    2 x Quad Core 2.83GHz Processors (1333MHz FSB)
    2GB (2x1GB) 667MHz FB-DIMM


    2 x Quad Core 2.80GHz Processors (1600MHz FSB)
    2GB (2x1GB) 800MHz FB-DIMM


    320GB Hard drive (possibly 16mb cache rather thna 8mb)
    A mid range graphics card, maybe slightly below midrange, too hard to predict a model. Nothing above a 256MB 8600GT is likely though.

    It's quite probable things like wifi and bluetooth will cost an additional fee similar to now.

    You should be able to downgrade the processors, though you won't be getting the same value. 667MHz FB-DIMMs are currently around $75 per GB (from crucial/kingston) and $50 from omni technologies. The only 800MHz FB-DIMM pricing I've seen has them at $100 per GB. Apple certified modules may cost more. If they do go with 1600MHz FSB processors and 800MHz memory the only processor downgrades they can offer would use 667MHz memory though.

    If you want a more powerful graphics card, expect Apple's higher end offering to cost somewhere between $300 and $400.
  7. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Feb 2, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    I would say go with the Mac Pro it's easy to upgrade and looks very nice. Besides you already have a monitor.
  8. ClassicBean macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2004
  9. fs454 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dec 7, 2007
    Los Angeles / Boston
    Hahahahaha, thanks for the input so far, I really think the Mac Pro is the way to go. It's so hard waiting though. All I do when I'm home when i'm not playing my 360 is look at pictures of my future beast. haha.

    Unless apple's prices are somehow revolutionized, I plan on grabbing a 1TB drive and some RAM off of newegg with my purchase. I hope the video cards aren't too badly priced.

    How do xeons do in gaming situations when working under Boot Camp? I figure i'll want a few games as well.
  10. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    Not too bad but not great given the cost of the machine, it should perform as well as a PC at half the price. Alternatively you can stick with consoles.
  11. fs454 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dec 7, 2007
    Los Angeles / Boston
    Yeah I plan to, I actually own all three consoles but will be selling off a PS3 to help pay for this thing.

    There's a few PC exclusives that i'll be playing, but my 360 will see the most use.
  12. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Oct 31, 2006
    I'd say for about $3200 you could get a pretty sweet Mac Pro. I'm planning on spending around that (with an educational discount). I'll start with adding 4GB to whatever base is, and I'll add hard drive space later. As said earlier, the MBP is better, or at least comparable to the iMac, so that doesn't seem like a very good choice.
  13. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Sep 22, 2006
    why dont you just plug your monitor into the MBP?
  14. fs454 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dec 7, 2007
    Los Angeles / Boston
    I most definately do and that's how I'm set up right now. It's great.

    I'm very mobile with this MBP and it sucks to have to unpack and hook everything up and break it all down whenever I go out.
  15. fs454 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dec 7, 2007
    Los Angeles / Boston
    Also, when you order a custom configuration, how long does it take to ship?

    If I do the same custom config in the Apple Store, what do they do? Do they direct you online or install parts on-site? I've never ordered a BTO Mac so far.
  16. GSMiller macrumors 68000


    Dec 2, 2006
    It took Apple 3 days to build and ship out my made-to-order iMac.

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