Is common for Mac Pro users to change cpu?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by knucles, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. knucles macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    Portugal
    #1
    My thinking is instead of paying premium for the hex upgrade, spend that money in ram and ssd raid, and in two years go ahead and buy the old 3,33ghz hexa xeon.

    Sounds good?
    I have been building pcs for years so it should be trivial for the tecnical part, do you guys use this system
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #2
    very uncommon. Most users sell their old computer and buy a new one.

    You need to make sure that the CPU you buy will be compatible with the motherboard.

    Some of the apple mobos and latest CPUs are not compatible, so pick wisely.
     
  3. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #3
    Only very few people have done it. The main reason is that new CPUs usually have different socket and even if they have the same socket, the stepping is different and because Apple does not release firmware updates to add support for new CPUs, they won't work.

    For example, these 6-core CPUs won't work in 2009 Mac Pro even though they both use LGA 1366 socket.
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #4
    As usual HH provides the details as to why, in more detail then I ever could :)
     
  5. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #5
    I don't think people don't change due to the difficulty involved in sourcing the right CPUs. It's easy enough to make sure that one's new CPU is going to be compatible.

    I think it comes down to expense. These CPUs are quite expensive, and as architecture evolves, it really seems more prudent to wait until you need to upgrade, and then get the latest and greatest architecture. It's a better deal to buy a Mac Pro than to source parts.

    Or at least it was. I have a 2008 MP Octo that I expect to last me a long time. When I do put the money into an upgrade, I dare not imagine how fast that machine will render video.

    HH is also no doubt right about the necessary firmware upgrades, though I have read the words of a few here who have upgraded their CPUs successfully.
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #6
    I didn't say it's impossible, more like your choices are limited ;)

    Plenty of people have upgraded their 2006 Mac Pro with two quad core CPUs, I think that is the most popular upgrade. Some folks have bought the base Mac Pro (talking about 2009-) and then upgraded its CPU to W3580, the same CPU that Apple sells for 1200$. Those chips go for ~700$ on eBay and then you can sell your W3520 for ~300$, meaning that you got the upgrade for around 400 bucks, 800$ less than what Apple asks for it.

    I think the main reason that only so few people do it is that the choices you have offer only quite small performance increase as it's often just a frequency bump, so you would be better off selling your current MP and buying a new one or waiting for next gen and then selling.
     
  7. knucles thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    Portugal
    #7
    Say i buy the 2010 mac pro entry quad 2,8 and in a couple of years i go on ebay and buy e 3,33 ghz hexa, i know its supported already and the socket is the 1366.

    Doable? Worth it?
     
  8. Vylen macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2010
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #8
    Doable yes.. Worth it? Maybe... if you can find a 3.33 cheap (you can most likely find it cheaper than Apple) and then sell the quad to further offset/cheapen the price...

    A good path if you think the Quad is enough then find later the 3.33 would be better.
     
  9. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #9
    As long as you buy the version with correct stepping, it should work. If you don't need more power than what 2.8GHz quad can offer but you may need more in the future, it's a good plan. There will likely be more 6-cores coming at some point as currently there are only two models IIRC
     
  10. dissolve macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    #10
    I'm hoping to do this as well. For me, it really depends on how much the 6-core comes down in price over the years. Right now, it's $1000 on newegg and not worth it. Like everyone else has said, it's technically possibly, but unfortunately may not make sense logistically.
     
  11. hugodrax macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2007
    #11
    No, I never even did it when I owned home built PC systems. I would just build a new PC.

    If I wanted to putz around with buying chips,messing with dll issues and driver problems and **** like that I would have continued with my building PC and self service.
     
  12. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #12
    I agree.
     
  13. Altimeter88 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2006
    #13
    I did the upgrade in my 2006 Mac Pro twice, and for that machine it was actually more than cost effective when going from a 2xdual cores to 2xquad cores but this was somewhat of a unique model. Really a great value compared to some of the Mac Pros that came later.
    Eg. I purchased my 06 Mac Pro for $2500, used for a a year or two, pulled out the Xeons, sold them on ebay for more than the new quad cores cost so I actually made money on the deal. Now after 4 years I just sold the system locally in just 2 days for $1500. Great return on investment.

    Also if you are wanting the price to come down on those top CPUs, not sure how much it really will on those high end CPUs, even the old 3Ghz Xeons from 2007 are pricey on ebay so make sure you run the numbers, consider losing the warranty and how much time it will take etc.
     

Share This Page