Is a 4,1 2x2.26 an upgrade from i3 iMac?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by camflan, Jan 19, 2013.

  1. camflan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    #1
    I'm looking at a 4,1 dual 2.26 for a great price (well under $1k). Is this going to be an upgrade in real usage from my current machine (specs below)? Primary usage is Lightroom/Photoshop/Parallels as well as iTunes/Safari/Mail/day to day stuff and I'm beginning to edit more video. I'm tired of my iMac bogging down while working with my large photos in LR4 and the 3 daisy chained FW800 drives on my desk. I have a new, unopened SSD for my new machine and I'll upgrade up to at least 16GB RAM. I'm semi-worried that the lower clock speed is going to be something I'll notice.

    The Mac Pro has a big upside in speed, internal expandibility - is it going to have any downsides I'm missing?

    Current -
    2010 27" 3.2 i3 iMac
    12GB Ram
    120GB SSD + 1TB 7200rpm internal
    3 FW800 Newer Q docks for more storage
     
  2. cyber16 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    #2
    If you can get it at that price its a no brainer at this time.
    Give it a hands on spin and compare the two.
    At that price you should be able to flip/resell it for a nice profit if you don't like it.
    Yes imo it will smoke your imac.

    If you decide to buy and resell it, try to do that prior to the new 2013 MP release as that may cut into your potential profits
     
  3. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #3

    That's _exactly_ what I was thinking. Glad I'm not crazy for wanting to get it. Thanks
     
  4. cyber16 macrumors 6502

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    Jan 12, 2013
    #4
    Then when you decide to keep it, you can always upgrade the CPUs
    Then when you want MORE POWER
    You can even flash it into a 5.1 and make it a 12-Core Hex CPU MP
     
  5. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #5

    Yeah, super tempting. Before that I'll add a GTX
     
  6. El Awesome macrumors 6502

    El Awesome

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    Jul 21, 2012
    Location:
    Zurich
    #6
    I doubt you're gonna find a DP 4.1 for less than 1k$. They're all between 1.5k$ and 1.8k$.

    If you do, buy it.
     
  7. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #7
    Checking it out tomorrow, if it matches the specs and pictures, it's a 4,1 that I will definitely be buying.
     
  8. cyber16 macrumors 6502

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    Jan 12, 2013
    #8
    I'd be forcing the issue and buying today ;)

     
  9. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #9
    I'm trying, he's under the weather - so I gotta wait until he's up and out of bed :/
     
  10. cyber16 macrumors 6502

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    Jan 12, 2013
    #10
    Offer to bring him some chicken soup ;)
    Good luck, as i said, its a no brainer purchase if on the up & up

     
  11. spoonie1972 macrumors 6502a

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    Toronto
  12. wonderspark macrumors 68030

    wonderspark

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Location:
    Oregon
    #12
    Yup, I'd buy that in an instant, and put new CPUs in it. Having done the CPU update to my single CPU 4,1 with ease, I'm sure the dual CPU swap with some washers for spacing would be only slightly tougher... The new CPUs would cost more than the whole machine at that point, haha, but it would be rad!
     
  13. maxmaut macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2011
    #13
    Yes, the price is amazing. Good luck with that deal man, but please, be careful and check if it's working OK, and ask a lot of questions, to make sure you're not buying a malfunctioning machine.
     
  14. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #14

    I'll be especially thorough, I'm hoping it's a "money is tight" issue, not a "rats leaving ship" issue. Is there anything in particular with Mac Pros to look for, and if so, what's the best way to diagnose? Maybe something I should stress even if it seems to be working perfectly at first?
     
  15. cyber16 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    #15
    Search the internet for the Apple Service Diagnostic 3S132 and make a disc or at least the Apple hardware test disk, if it has M-Lion on it, you should be able to run it via the recovery partition on the hard drive
     
  16. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Aug 1, 2008
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    Vancouver, BC
    #16
    I'm surprised everyone's endorsing this... You guys are all high on core crack. :p. That machine when it came out was the black sheep of the family. It has lower clock speeds than anything else out there and still few software tasks that can utilize all 8 cores. At the time, most laptops could out bench that thing at single threaded tasks. The i3 will beat the pants off this thing at any single threaded task and even dual core tasks. "Upgrade" to this and watch your performance in most of the software you listed drop by 30%.

    I would only buy it to flip it to make a buck (but no sensible person would buy this... See above) or to upgrade the CPUs, but then you could find a better machine for that budget to start with and save yourself the hassle. At any rate, I would never use it - as is.
     
  17. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

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    Dec 17, 2009
    #17

    When the 2009's came out, you are right many programs didn't take advantage of all the cores. Even today there are very few programs that will utilize all the cores. With that said, if you run multiple programs you can. Run a couple (or even one VM) and you can use up several at once. I usually run a linux VM with 1 core and a Windows 7 VM with 2 on my Mac Pro at all times. If I did that with a 4 core Mac Pro, I would only have 1 left for OSX! In my case, nothing I do is super process intensive (occasionally I do a little video conversion/encoding), but I do a lot of little things enough that I need more cores and not more speed.

    Just because YOU wouldn't use it, doesn't mean the rest of the world doesn't need it. I wouldn't think of buying a quad core Mac Pro for my needs (maybe a hex core, but that would be the minimum). I guess I'm not "sensible"... And at some point once the processors are super cheap, the OP could upgrade all the way to 12 cores whereas a single processor Mac Pro can only do 6.

    Many of us aren't gamers....
     
  18. monkeybagel macrumors 65816

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    United States
    #18
    I agree. The Xeon machines have so much more headroom and don't slow down under a load. Hard to go back to a 1 proc or desktop processor afterwards. If one uses VMs they really shine.
     
  19. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #19
    Agreed. But we're presumably here trying to help the OP make a decision (who happens to be a fairly typical user)... not you or me. I didn't see him mention the need to run multiple VM's in his post. What about this 8-Core Mac Pro makes any sense for him?
     
  20. wonderspark macrumors 68030

    wonderspark

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    Feb 4, 2010
    Location:
    Oregon
    #20
    I figured "well under $1k" meant about $600, and for that, I'd buy it and swap a pair of 3.33GHz+ 6-core CPUs into it. "Beginning to edit more video" could grow into serious video, but who knows. I know *I'd* use it! :p

    I started using my machine for Folding@Home when I'm not working, and it's become a bit addicting. I have an unheated garage, and it would be sweet to have that dual sucker in there, heating my garage and folding non-stop.
     
  21. camflan thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #21
    It's all a moot point now, he sold it out from under me while I was on my way to see it. :mad::mad:
     
  22. cyber16 macrumors 6502

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    Jan 12, 2013
    #22
    :eek: :(
    I wager too much time lapsed and someone jumped in and offered him more than his asking price.
    I tend to do that on craigslist when i know its a great deal well below market value. When i do it, i am sure to place text in the reply title line that says BONUS $s to you without a commitment on how much, that always seems to get the attention and my phone usually rings afterwards if the ad had no contact phone number.
    Then always get the seller to kill his ad right away.
     
  23. Sejjr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2013
    #23
    I have the 2009 4,1 2 x 2.66 Mac Pro, and I was hoping to upgrade the processor. The problem is, I don't know what the best processor I could put in is from a price/performance standpoint. Upgrading the SP versions are very affordable. I was hoping to not spend $2,500 (X5680) to upgrade something that might not even work. Any suggestions of processors that would give a nice performance increase without breaking the bank?
     
  24. Jeff Troiano macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    #24
    Sejjr,

    Are you sure your Mac is a 2.66 or 2.26? The 2.66 is a quad core machine (single CPU) and the 2.26 is an 8 core (dual processor). I saw this question and a similar question in another thread. The 2.66 in the above quote might be a typo, but you might want to check on your system to make sure. I have the 2.26 dual CPU, and I'm currently looking around. I'd like to upgrade to the x5680, which are 3.33 hexa core chips. Retail seems to be around $1700 each. Have found them on Amazon for just over $900 each. Checking eBay, but am worried about buying used for $600 or $700. I can't comment about price vs performance. Maybe someone else here can. But if you have the 2.66, you can upgrade a single chip relatively inexpensive.
     
  25. Sejjr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2013
    #25
    Yes that was a typo. I have the Dual 2.26. Wishing I had the SP now however after seeing the prices. Do the processors you buy have to be a "matched" pair, or can any 2 of the same chip work?
     

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