Lifespan on 2010/2012 5,1...Parts most likely to die first?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by maccer99, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. maccer99 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2015
    #1
    Wondering if anyone here has heard of the 5,1s starting to fail or give aging issues by now, or if it's almost unheard of. I'm mainly referring to stock specs used since release.

    Storage drives, RAM, even Video card are easily replacable with brand new items with fresh lifespan, but Processor and Logic Board, not so much.

    Due to the fact it's nearly impossible to find new or barely used 5,1s, you would only even be able to replace with used parts. But correct me if I'm wrong if new/never used Logic Boards/Processors can be found. I am hoping those two parts are not the ones that have aging issues.
     
  2. shoehornhands macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2014
    #2
    While I've never actually looked into it, the only things I see being potentially difficult to replace are the logic board (given that it's unique to the Mac Pro / there weren't likely a huge number made) and perhaps the PSU (if it's unique to the Mac Pro). I wouldn't be too worried about the logic board though as most Xeon / server motherboards are very robust (much more so than typical consumer motherboards).

    Same with Xeon processors (or any Intel processor for that matter). If the logic board or processor don't die in the first couple months, they're usually good for the duration of the product's life (assuming they aren't damaged by the user in some way). Even if something did happen to the processor, it should be pretty easy to find another one (unlike the logic board, the processor is just a standard Intel Xeon).

    Everything else (video card, memory, storage, optical drive, etc) is pretty standard / easy to find / replace.

    As I said though, those Mac Pros / the components used are pretty robust workstation / server parts so they're likely to last a very long time. You might need to replace a hard drive at some point (assuming the spinners aren't replaced with SSDs) and maybe a fan or something, but everything else is likely to outlast the useful lifespan of the computer.
     
  3. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    #3
    Hard drives. Also my 5,1 has a weird power issue... if it's off and I press the power button nothing happens. If I press it harder it clicks like it's about to turn on but the light by the power button doesn't go on. I have to then unplug the power cable, plug it back in, and press the power button really hard and hold it and then it lights up and turns on like normal. I've brought it in to Apple multiple times and they insist nothing is wrong.
     
  4. Mattww macrumors 6502

    Mattww

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
  5. 1madman1 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    Location:
    Richmond, BC, Canada
    #5
    My first Mac Pro (4,1) behaved like that for a few months before it's backplane died.
     
  6. superdx macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    #6
    This thread is giving me the willies! My 4,1 MP has been the longest computer I've ever owned, hope I can get another few years out of it, at least until Apple puts back PCI-E slots into the MP...
     
  7. pianoman88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    #7
    Mine was doing that too. I had video of the problem and took it to the Mac store three times. Always told that there wasn't a problem. The fourth time I asked to see the manager. I mentioned the symptoms and he told me that I needed a power supply. Duh. Fixed and no problems afterwards. I suggest speaking with the manager.
     
  8. jjhoekstra macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    #8
    My brother and me, as a kind of slightly profitable hobby, buy up cheap/broken 4.1 and 5.1 machines and than try to get them to run again (and than sell them, obviously...). Based on this experience I would say: motherboard-battery, hdds and fans followed by corroded contacts of any of the many connectors. Replacing the battery, the hdd and cleaning the many connections fixes 70-80% of the MPs we handle. I personally have never seen a broken power-supply but I have seen leaky liquid cooling systems, broken cables, fried firewire ports and once a broken power switch.
    In general I would say that the cheapest way of getting spare-parts is by buying a used MacPro like the one you have.
     
  9. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    #9
    Lol I thought so too, also the other person who replied to me mentioned the backplane board, which this guy thought was the problem but then didn't end up replacing it for some reason. Luckily the part isn't too expensive.
     
  10. Christian Schumacher macrumors newbie

    Christian Schumacher

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2015
    #10
    Just signed up to track this subject because I have this symptom on mine too. Is it backplane or power supply? My Apple Care has expired a few months ago and the problem is from at least a year ago. I thought initially it was an UPS problem and most of the time I sleep it instead of powering it down, so didn't catch in time to take it to support. I see others with the same problem and here's hope to hear more from you. How long can one get by without servicing it? Is it risky to do so?
     
  11. Demigod Mac macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2008
    #11
    Probably a better question would be what parts are most likely to die that would be a hassle and/or expensive to replace?

    Hard drive failure (if you keep a diligent backup strategy) is a minor inconvenience. Easy to swap out drives.
    Even CPU failure shouldn't be that bad; eBay is chock full of Nehalem/Westmere Xeon leftovers from old servers companies are replacing.

    Logic board or power supply? Much more troubling.

    I don't know much about electrical engineering so I'll ask: how hardy is the Mac Pro's power supply? Can't help but wonder how many times that relay can click on whenever the machine wakes up (if it's 2-3 times per day times 5+ years) until it finally goes out?
     
  12. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    #12
    It's been at least 4 months. The Apple genius said that he doesn't think it's the PSU, but rather the backplane board since it communicates with the PSU and the symptoms point to that rather than the PSU. I don't think it's risky to not replace it, the worst thing that could happen is the Mac won't power on at some point until you get it replaced or the PSU (still not sure which one it is)
     
  13. pianoman88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    #13
    One of the "geniuses" I spoke with thought so too. I'm glad that I went with the manager's instincts. I never knew how many ties I was going to have to press the power button before it would turn on; it was getting worse daily.
     
  14. Christian Schumacher macrumors newbie

    Christian Schumacher

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2015
    #14
    Zwaler and Pianoman, thanks for the update. I'm considering leaving it on as long as I can. The thing is that this machine hasn't had any problems nor any kernel panics so if anyone else knows a bit more please chime in.
     
  15. 1madman1 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    Location:
    Richmond, BC, Canada
    #15
    In my case I actually had my PSU replaced first, but it didn't fix the problem.
     
  16. maccer99, Oct 5, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2015

    maccer99 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2015
    #16
    Lots of good pointers in here.

    Where would be the best place to buy new or like new (gutted from new cMP) processors, power supply, fans, and logic board?

    Ebay has processors but very expensive and unsure how used and abused they are. Maybe those are if you need the Apple MP trays/converting single to dual processor setup, can you just buy (compatible) Xeon chips if you already have trays?
     
  17. Macsonic macrumors 65816

    Macsonic

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Location:
    Earth
    #17
    Normally the cMac Pro is durable and robust with good maintenance, keeping dusts and heat away. A Mac technician once advised me whenever there's a thunderstorm with lightning, to turn off the internet to avoid risking damage either to the logic board or power supply. This may happen if the lightning directly hits the cable line where your internet is connected. Invest in a UPS as some models have a built in power surge protection. There are some eBay sellers and other third party online Mac sellers that offer parts and accessories for the cMac Pro. I haven't done business with them and just to give some options out there.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Mac-P...005&rk=5&rkt=6&mehot=lo&sd=281485265614&rt=nc

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Mac-P...005&rk=3&rkt=6&mehot=lo&sd=331511201101&rt=nc

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/GENUINE-App...9&pid=100005&rk=5&rkt=6&sd=221594888920&rt=nc

    http://www.premiummacparts.com/index.php?id_category=67&controller=category
    http://www.macpartsdepot.com/index.php/mac-pro-parts/logic-boards.html
    http://www.macofalltrades.com/Refurbished-Used-Apple-Mac-Pros-s/388.htm
     
  18. flowrider macrumors 601

    flowrider

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    #18
    My experience with CPUs from eBay is that they are priced very reasonably. The key here is to check the seller's feedback. I have bought 2 sets of CPUs from the same seller. The first set was fine, the second had one CPU that would not recognize on of my RAM slots. A quick call and they rushed me a new unit. The seller was:

    http://stores.ebay.com/computersales/

    Lou
     
  19. Christian Schumacher, Oct 5, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2015

    Christian Schumacher macrumors newbie

    Christian Schumacher

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2015
    #19
    This thread on Macrumors has helped me with the problem I was having. After getting the Apple Hardware Test to do its thing, I checked the diagnosis lights in the MP, and tried to perform a Real Time Clock [RTC] reset; Bingo! My MP is now starting up with no issues. If one is having this problem, all I had to do was to remove the graphics card and press the button besides the clock battery for a second [this last step requires the power cord to be plugged in]

    Zwhaler, try this out! My understanding is that the diagnostic leds will rule out if the problem is in the PSU and/or Backplane board, which in my case has had confirmed they were ok, hence the RTC reset being effective. If anyone has more consolidated info, please show your hands.

    Additionally, I'm gonna second Macsonics advice; Keep dust and heat away!
     
  20. RoastingPig macrumors 68000

    RoastingPig

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Location:
    SoCal
    #20
    get a ischmutz, keep the graphic cards tdp under 225, get a ups. sleep your computer when not in use.
     
  21. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #21
    I support around 100 4,1 and 5,1s. Aside from some early fan failures in GPUs, sporadic disk failures, and one defective logic board, still under warranty, I've seen no hardware failures of any kind, and these are computers that are on basically 24/7. Even some older 3,1s are still going fine but we've phased most of those out. Some of those have sporadic RAM failures at this point, but usually reseating the RAM will solve that.
    I don't know when we'll start to see widespread failures but I imagine that it won't be one specific component that fails when it happens.
     

Share This Page