Configuration One 3.33GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon “Westmere” 6GB (3x2GB) 1TB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s hard drive ATI Radeon HD 5870 1GB One 18x SuperDrive Apple Magic Mouse Apple Keyboard with Numeric Keypad (English) & User's Guide Apple Mini DisplayPort to DVI Adapter Well, I just ordered my first MacPro. I'm a four year Apple user that is finally taking the plunge to a single computer solution after years of various MacBooks and a MacMini sitting next to my PC tower. It seems more efficient to have a powerful Mac like the MacPro which is capable of running both the OS X and Windows platforms instead of two large, power-hungry machines running at one time. My use for the MacPro will be gaming (in both OS X and Win7 via Bootcamp), using iMovie to create movies of my family (one 2.5 year old daughter and another baby on the way), and doing both work and schoolwork (currently working towards an MBA). I'm hoping this computer lasts me around two years, and it should as long as I can get one more graphics card cycle out of Apple. I was torn on the Quad vs Hex debate but after reading a lot about the differences between them and my needs the Hex was a better solution, albeit a more expensive one. I'm planning on acquiring the new Apple 27" Cinema display when they start shipping and I feel that the Hex will be more capable of running video games at the beautiful full 2560x1440 resolution given the CPU power needed to push the GPU to such higher resolutions. It also appears, given the current benchmarks of StarCraft 2, that Blizzard is utilizing multiple cores in their latest engines. I'm a huge Diablo fan and plan on spending way too many hours on Diablo 3 when it hits so I'm hoping the Hex will also be of benefit in that instance. Not that the Quad is bad, but the Hex is well... the Hex I did the memory upgrade through Apple because it was only $10 more than buying it from another vendor. The real memory savings come in the higher memory sizes. I do plan on buying another HDD for the Bootcamp installation but will buy that from my local CompUSA (Tiger Direct) because they're priced accordingly with NewEgg for the most part on drives. I plan on doing a lot of gaming benchmarks once the unit arrives and will certainly post them here for everyone that may be interested. The order acknowledgment says that the unit should arrive between Sept 17th and the 23rd. Thanks to everyone here on the MacRumors MacPro forums for all of your help. Now, let the waiting begin! Update after arrival: Ok so it has been here for a few days now and I've had some time to dig into it. I've installed Windows 7 via Bootcamp and have Steam running on both the OS X and Windows side of things. I have also run some various benchmarking software where applicable given which OS platform they run on. Here's what I have so far.... XBench (XBench in OS X) Some solid numbers here. Very impressive memory and CPU bandwidth. I'm running 2x 3GB memory sticks in triple channel mode which is accounting for the memory test numbers. Know that you will certainly slow down to a degree running 4 memory sticks, but also understand that not all programs require fast speeds, some require more memory overhead and not such a fast thoroughfare through the bus. GeekBench (GeekBench in Windows7) I'm not sure why it is reporting 32-bit as I'm running Windows7 Professional in 64-bit mode. But nonetheless, great metrics were taken away from running this benchmark. Cinebench OS X (OS X Cinebench) As you can see, very poor 3D capabilities in Cinebench on the OS X side given the rather disappointing OpenGL support Apple has at this time. While the CPU score is solid, OpenGL is lacking. Cinebench Windows7 (Cinebench Windows7) Using Windows7 via Bootcamp is where the MacPro really shines for an all around good gaming experience. Not the near-double OpenGL score in Win7 as compared to the OS X benchmark. The MacPro is a flat out scorcher in Windows7. 3DMark 06 Note: Windows Only (3DMark 06 in Windows7) Need I say more? That's a very, very respectable score for any custom PC build rocking a single core/single graphics card configuration, and will surely satisfy any current PC game's requirements. 3D Mark Vantage Note: Windows Only (3DMark Vantage in Windows7) Game Benchmarks Counter-Strike Source Stress Test Note: Run with monitor resolution of 1920x1200 with all graphics and advanced graphics settings at maximum in Windows7. While Counter-Strike Source is an old game, the Stress Test built into it is still a good indicator of CPU and GPU bandwidth due to the how the two need to work together to push FPS in PC games. Source is dependent on the CPU pushing a lot of information through the GPU since the CPU is where the bottleneck would most likely occur in an older game like this. The FPS were pegged at 300 (the maximum Source records in this benchmark) for most of the run but did dip down to ~ 200 for the more taxing parts of the stress test. Still, slowed down to 200 fps?? After several runs the average stress test score was 225.04 FPS in Windows7. Unfortunately the OS X version of CS:Source does not have the stress test so I was not able to run it for a good comparison. Left4Dead and Left4Dead 2 Note: Run with monitor resolution of 1920x1200 with all graphics and advanced graphics settings at maximum. Windows Only for now. Rumors are October 4th for OS X versions of this game. Given that timedemos are usually broken whenever a game is updated I was not able to run any specific in-game benchmark for either of the L4D titles. But I did take pretty detailed notes on FPS with hordes of zombies running around me, being boomed, and attacked by all angles to really push the MacPro in this game. The lowest FPS I saw at any one time in the most massive of horde attacks was 150 FPS in Left4Dead and 90 FPS in Left4Dead 2. In most cases it was over 200 FPS in both games. The games played beautifully no matter what was going on on-screen. Just a great gaming experience and much, much better than the Intel i7/Nvidia Gforce GTX260 that this MacPro replaced. Team-Fortress 2 Note: Run with monitor resolution of 1920x1200 with all graphics and advanced graphics settings at maximum. Tested in both Windows7 and OS X. Much like the previous two titles here, I ran this game with a screen full of 24 bots in a server to get a feel for how well the game would run. I never saw TF2 game drop below 120 FPS in Windows. OS X fared a bit lower with an average FPS of around 80 FPS. Considering the CPU time required to run 23 bots in expert mode, it is a testament to the great multi-core utilization we're seeing from Valve in their games. Battlefield Bad Company 2 Note: Run with monitor resolution of 1920x1200 with all graphics and advanced graphics settings at maximum. Tested in Windows7. Overall, BC2 is a smooth and lag/stutter-free gaming experience. Even with a lot of things happening at one time on the screen the game is a cinematic experience on the Mac Pro with every single video enhancement enabled to its highest setting. That's it for now. I'm going to mess around with more games as time goes on and update this thread. Please be sure to post any of your own gaming or benchmark metrics here so we can all share our experiences with the MacPro.