Mac Pro 1,1 CPU Upgrade Recommendations?

jsurpless

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Original poster
Aug 6, 2009
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I am giving some thought to upgrading my MP 1,1 CPU...

I've seen the various guides but a number seem out of date...

Wondering what current recommendations would be...

My use is pretty casual, some game-playing (added the 5770) so I am not sure if I would benefit from added cores...

Is it even worth upgrading?
 

Hellhammer

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Dec 10, 2008
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What Mac Pro do you have? There is the option of higher clocked CPU if you have 2GHz or 2.66GHz which should benefit in gaming (at least a bit). Having more than four cores won't really benefit though.
 

666sheep

macrumors 68040
Dec 7, 2009
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If you've bought 5770 for gaming purposes, my guess is that you're not extreme gamer ;) More cores won't help much in gaming (as Hellhammer said) but if you have base 2.0 GHz model, a pair of 5160s (cheap on eBay) + ATI 5870 will be a quite good solution.
 

nambuccaheadsau

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Oct 19, 2007
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Depends on the dollars it costs to find CPUs. personally went with a matched pair of X5355 2.66GHz Quad Cores which cost $351 on eBay Australia. Fitted them myself and sold original Dual Core 2.66GHz CPUs for $100.

Bench scores with Geekbench show a 92% increase the Quads over the Duals. Would not get a newer Mac Pro for $250.00!
 

juanm

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May 1, 2006
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+1 on the X5355. I did the upgrade too, and did it again later on for a friend. It's very easy (except for that ******g grey front fan assembly!) and for about $350-400 depending on what you do with your computer, it's worth every dollar.
Maybe you can even find a pair of X5365.
With that, an SSD, your gpu, and 8GB of RAM, you'll get several more years out of your Mac Pro...
 

MacinJosh

macrumors 6502a
Jan 29, 2006
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I have a 3.0Ghz Quad. Would I benefit in going 3.0Ghz Octad with the X5365s? I use Aperture, Games, basic stuff...

EDIT: I'm an idiot. Hellhammer answered my Q above.
 
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shawk

macrumors newbie
Mar 4, 2010
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0
I upgraded two Mac Pro 1.1 to dual X5365 and 16GB RAM.
These now show a Geekbench score of about 11,000.
It's Worth doing.
No issues but be sure to clean the CPU contacts with isopropyl alcohol.
 

bhuygen

macrumors newbie
Aug 16, 2011
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I have a Mac Pro 1.1 and did some upgrading; really this version (the original 1.1) is a great base for upgrading and if you look at geekbench you will see lots of people upgrading their CPU's on this one.

I bought it "barebones" (2 x 2,66 GHz woodcrest, 3Gb RAM, 250Gb HDD)
I use it for video editing (imovie, final cut)
I upgraded the following things:
replaced the processors with Xeon E5345 (cost me 200 euro's second hand) this gives the machine a huge boost on the rendering department.
replaced the 3Gig Apple RAM with standard FB-DIMM's got it from some old servers, put in 16Gb have been using for a few weeks now, no errors no complants so far (and i do stress the system!)
I also had an SSD laying around (intel M25x 160Gb) Huge boost on boot and programms starting.
As last i also had a Sapphire HD5770 in my PC, put it in the Mac and it worked (without EFI boot on DVI, but that's not a real roadblock)

Did some geekbenches before the tweaks and after, went from 5190 to 8399
 

thirdkind

macrumors member
Oct 20, 2005
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0
Columbus
I'm in the same position and need to decide if I'm going with upgrades or buying a 6,1 whenever they hit. I have 10GB of RAM and usually fill that up with no problem, so I'm considering going to 16GB. My flashed 4870 1GB seems to be doing fine (I don't do a lot of gaming), so no problems there. I already have an SSD (120GB OWC), and that improved overall performance substantially. Easily the best upgrade I've ever made on any system.

So I'm looking at potential CPU and RAM upgrades. But when I look at the cost of the upgrades, I ask myself if I'm just better off combining that money with whatever I can sell my 1,1 for and putting it all toward a new 6,1 (or a nice used 5,1).

My recommendation to the OP is to look at SSDs and RAM first. Doesn't sound like more/faster cores will improve anything for you other than Geekbench scores.
 

Neodym

macrumors 68000
Jul 5, 2002
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But when I look at the cost of the upgrades, I ask myself if I'm just better off combining that money with whatever I can sell my 1,1 for and putting it all toward a new 6,1 (or a nice used 5,1).
Went through this decision as well - here's my thoughts:

MP 1,1's are currently going for only small money on eBay (german site: between 650,- and 900,- Euro usually). CPU upgrade (2nd hand) is usually below 200€, Ram may be a little expensive, so let's assume another 200€ for 8GB. Makes a total of 1.300,- € with a good price selling the 1,1 - for a new 8-core machine with comparable amount of memory you will probably easily have to pay more than twice as much (a little less for a refurb, but not that much less).

PLUS - if the MP will have a re-design as rumored, chances are that Rev.A will have its quirks.

All that made me opt for a CPU upgrade to comfortably wait another year or two before retiring my silvery powerhouse. By then (hopefully) the Thunderbolt transition will have worked out as well (things like effective speed, reliability, available peripherals, adoption in the PC world -> prices etc.), so decision parameters will be different anyway.

Admitted - i already have a SSD installed for my system and am perfectly fine with my "only" 12GB Ram, so it's "just" the CPU upgrade for me to bring my 5 year old machine's performance back on par with today's top-of-the-line iMac!
 

jsurpless

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 6, 2009
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What Mac Pro do you have? There is the option of higher clocked CPU if you have 2GHz or 2.66GHz which should benefit in gaming (at least a bit). Having more than four cores won't really benefit though.
I have the 2.66Ghz version...

Right now, I play Civilization V and Starcraft II... in the next year or so, I plan to give Diablo 3 a whirl plus these two...

Would any processor upgrade offer any "meaningful" improvement for these apps?

If I understand correctly, the options I have are the 53xx series of Xeon chips, right?
 
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Neodym

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Jul 5, 2002
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I have the 2.66Ghz version...
[...]
Would any processor upgrade offer any "meaningful" improvement for these apps?

If I understand correctly, the options I have are the 53xx series of Xeon chips, right?
You would also have the option using the 51xx series to e.g. upgrade to 3.0 GHz (sticking to 4 cores), giving you a small improvement or to "upgrade" to a lower-power 2.66 with idle power consumption being 1/3 of your current CPU's (whether you consider that "meaningful", depends on your value system).

Games usually don't benefit from more than 4 cores.
 

jsurpless

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Original poster
Aug 6, 2009
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You would also have the option using the 51xx series to e.g. upgrade to 3.0 GHz (sticking to 4 cores), giving you a small improvement or to "upgrade" to a lower-power 2.66 with idle power consumption being 1/3 of your current CPU's (whether you consider that "meaningful", depends on your value system).

Games usually don't benefit from more than 4 cores.
When you say, "lower-power" 2.66 - which chip is that? The 'E-series'?

Is that just a newer, more efficient design or would there be performance trade-offs?

I believe I have the 5150, correct? The 5160 would be the 3.0 ghz, right? This on eBay?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Intel-Xeon-Dual-Core-5160-3GHz-4M-1333-SL9RT-/130560543031?pt=CPUs&hash=item1e6603c937
 

Neodym

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Jul 5, 2002
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When you say, "lower-power" 2.66 - which chip is that? The 'E-series'?
See this thread for more information.

Is that just a newer, more efficient design or would there be performance trade-offs?
A newer, more efficient design. No performance trade-offs.

I believe I have the 5150, correct? The 5160 would be the 3.0 ghz, right?
That's both right. The difference lies in the stepping. The linked eBay offer is the B2 stepping (SL9RT) with "normal" power consumption. The power-reduced variants are G0 steppings and are recognizable by their code-numbers (5150/2.66GHz: "SLAGA", 5160/3.00GHz: "SLAG9").
 

jsurpless

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Original poster
Aug 6, 2009
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See this thread for more information.


A newer, more efficient design. No performance trade-offs.


That's both right. The difference lies in the stepping. The linked eBay offer is the B2 stepping (SL9RT) with "normal" power consumption. The power-reduced variants are G0 steppings and are recognizable by their code-numbers (5150/2.66GHz: "SLAGA", 5160/3.00GHz: "SLAG9").
Can I seriously get a processor ~$25? I guess it's pretty old?

Also, another question - my 5150's each only use ~9W at idle... does this mean that I have a G0 stepping already?
 

jsurpless

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 6, 2009
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0
Unless you find a hot deal on processors, might want to consider selling it and buying at least a 2008 model. Especially if you use OS X.
Doing a quick eBay search for a 2006 Mac Pro, I found a few selling for $1100...

Seriously?
 

Neodym

macrumors 68000
Jul 5, 2002
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Can I seriously get a processor ~$25? I guess it's pretty old?
I'm not aware of the current price situation except for x5355 / x5365. Assuming that it's a server processor it will probably have been cooled adequately, so i see no reason for not getting one at the mentioned price. It may be outdated in the server world, but could well serve another couple of years for private use.

Also, another question - my 5150's each only use ~9W at idle... does this mean that I have a G0 stepping already?
According to the report linked in the "stepping thread" - yes! There are programs which can show you all the relevant information of your CPU('s) (like CPU-Z for Windows or netkas' CPU-X for OS X). Note: CPU-X would show the "Stepping" as "Revision".

Doing a quick eBay search for a 2006 Mac Pro, I found a few selling for $1100...

Seriously?
Asking price or actually sold for that? If the latter is true, there may have been options included like lots of Ram, an Apple monitor or other things of interest to potential buyers.
 

madmacx2011

macrumors newbie
Oct 22, 2011
1
0
Mac Pro 1.1 Dual X5365 Upgrade - Lion

I upgraded two Mac Pro 1.1 to dual X5365 and 16GB RAM.
These now show a Geekbench score of about 11,000.
It's Worth doing.
No issues but be sure to clean the CPU contacts with isopropyl alcohol.
Have you upgraded to lion with your X5365's? If so any issues?
 

lewdvig

macrumors 65816
Jan 1, 2002
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South Pole
I put a couple of ES Xeon E5340 (at least I think that's what they are???) in my 1,1 for $140 last winter.

I can OC to 2.8 pretty easily, at stock values I am just under 10,000 in 32 bit geekbench.

Everything including my 1,1, new CPUs, flashed 5770, 4 TB HDD, 32" LCD, 12 GB RAM and SSD cost me about $1400.

No doubt the $2200 Nehalem Pro with 5770 would be faster, but not by much.
 

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nambuccaheadsau

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Oct 19, 2007
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Ignore the sell it cranks.

For a Mac Pro 1.1 look for Intel X5365 3GHz matched pair CPU's, but as these usually run at about $600-$1000, the 5355 2.66GHz is a little more affordable. These can be purchased for around the $300 a pair.

These CPUs will increase the Geekbench tests on a Mac Pro 1.1 by a staggering 92%. Then consider a solid state drive.

And absolutely no issues running Lion in OS X.7, X.7.1 and X.7.2 madmacx.