"Investing" in an upgraded graphics Card...

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Derek87, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Derek87 macrumors 6502

    Jan 29, 2009
    pretty set on getting a single processor Mac Pro, 2.8 in the standard configuration.

    my dual 1.8G5 died a few weeks back, and as patient as i'd like to be about waiting for a new Mac Pro, i don't think i can wait until June...of course, if i *knew* it were march, i might be able to, but who knows...it's all a matter of rolling the dice.

    but i digress.

    my question is this: is it worth spending the extra $150 (or slightly discounted) on the 8880GT video card in terms of "future usage"?

    i am not a gamer nor need great video power for my things (i do photoshop but no video editing, etc.)

    However, i note that a new 8800GT costs in the 230+ range and i wonder aloud if i'm better off buying it now and being set for the life of the machine.

    my plan/hope: i will keep this machine, just like i did my old Powermac, for hopefully 4-6 years (assuming it doesn't die...if my G5 hadn't died, i'd still be happily using it for another year or two).

    or should i wait...and maybe a couple of years down the road, buy a faster video card for about the same $150 (or will such a thing be available once new Mac Pros come out)?
  2. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    I have the 1900XT and just two days ago added the 3870 HD from macsales.com. I did a lot of research between the 3870 HD and the 8800 GT. The 8800 GT performs best for games but the 3870 HD performs almost as well on games but does a lot better with Core Image type stuff (iPhoto, iMovie, etc). The 3870 HD is about $220. You can't get this card from Apple but it's a very easy install. You might consider that as an option. Also the 4870 is rumored to come out this year if you want to wait on that.

    If you're not going to be playing games at all, the stock vid card should do you fine for a while though.
  3. fabriciom macrumors 6502


    Feb 17, 2008
    Madrid, España
    I wouldn't call it an investment when is sure to only depreciate...
  4. sidewinder macrumors 68020


    Dec 10, 2008
    Northern California
    You are being to narrow in your definition of investment.

    No computer hardware gains value so, by your definition, you could not call any computer purchase an investment. Yet, if companies did not invest in computer hardware, they would not be in business for long.

    Investments are supposed to bring you a gain. In other words, if a computer makes you money, it is an investment.

  5. Derek87 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 29, 2009
    i understand...(hence the quotation marks): but my question is...

    worth spending 135 bucks now since such a card would cost $235 on its own right now...

    or do i expect to see faster cards a year or two down the road for less than 135. my gut feeling is to wait given my needs, but i'm wondering if it's realistic to expect a faster graphics card will be available for less than $135 a couple years down the road for this machine.
  6. spaceballl macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    Yes you can always expect to find a card much faster than the one you own for the same price a year down the road.
  7. AlexMaximus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 15, 2006
    A400M Base

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