Mac Pro 2006 Successful Upgrade 2.66->3.00!

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by OSXconvert, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. OSXconvert macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Brooklyn, NY
    Just a report on my successful upgrade from a Mac Pro 2006 2.66 quad (5150s) to a 3.00 quad (5160s). It was pretty easy, but I can't stress enough having the right tools, particularly the long, thin 3mm allen wrench. You need about 10" of length to get down to the heatsink nuts on the motherboard. I thought my adjustable screwdriver with extender would work, but the extender was too fat for the cutouts in the heatsink. You need a rod no more than 5/16" wide. Also, though people have said that a 15 Torx works (it does), I actually think the 3mm hex is the perfect fit. It may be tough finding these locally, even at a home depot, so you may want to buy online ahead of time unless you want to splurge and buy a set of long allen wrench keys (~$25 and up). The other challenge was connecting the lower heatsink's temperature sensor cable to the motherboard. If you have fat fingers like me, an angled hemostat or needlenose pliers will help you get into the tight space. And lastly, a small vacuum cleaner would be useful to suck all of the dust bunnies off the heatsinks and the fans and out of the motherboard's nooks and crannies. While you're in there, you might as well clean it out!

    My computer is a lot faster, about 12-14% faster, with no noticeable increase in fan noise. I really wanted to get a pair of X5365 quads, but they are too damn expensive. This processor upgrade along with my SSD boot drive should hold me until the next generation of Mac Pros appears next year.

    Special thanks to forum posters bozz2006, Tesselator, JPamplin, and gugucom for their helpful tips in other posts.

    Now, if anybody with a 2006 Mac Pro 2.0 ghz quad is looking for a pair of 5150s, please PM me before I put them on ebay in a day or two.
  2. gugucom macrumors 68020


    May 21, 2009
    Munich, Germany

    The temp sensor is easier if you completely remove the RAM cage, which isn't too difficult.

    I just sold the huge passive heat sinks that came with my x5365 pair. That brought my net cost for the upgrade down to 298€. :D
  3. JPamplin macrumors 6502


    Mar 12, 2009
    Nashville, TN
    Oy! Congrats!

    Way to go! That 3mm wrench was the bomb diggity, and made the process so much simpler (go back to my original post on the job for pics of it and a link to it later in the thread).

    I sold my 5150s on eBay for $212 with free shipping, so I knocked $200 off the $600 I spent on the 5355s. I was happy with a net $400 to go from quad to octo, but I assure you that kind of deal is hard to find. Be patient, folks. :cool:

    I almost went for 5160s but I figured Snow Leopard would really make the quad cores sing. Here's hoping - it seems nice so far. Hey, while I have everyone's eyeballs, can you guys go over to the Mac OS X forum and check out my post today on ATI 3870 benchies 10.5.7 vs. 10.6? I'd like some feedback from the forum I should have posted in. TIA.

  4. OSXconvert thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Brooklyn, NY
    I thought of that, but I didn't think I'd be able to get the cage back in after the bottom heatsink was in. Also that fan power cable was a little tough to plug in with my fat fingers.

    This is one of those things you do once, so you kind of forget about it. Though if a pair of X5365s become available for ~$500, I'd upgrade again.

    As for the SL benefit to octo vs quad, I bet it will be real. Though for most of the apps that I use, CS4 and Capture NX2, there won't be much of a gain until they recode which probably won't be until next year. For people doing video and using apple-coded apps, I'm sure the speedup with octo will be very nice.
  5. OSXconvert thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Brooklyn, NY
    Yes, I saw that link to the wrench. I was just impatient and wanted the speedup immediately since I had a huge batch of images to process.

    Hopefully I can get $200 for my 5150s.

  6. Tesselator macrumors 601


    Jan 9, 2008
    I've done a few now and in all of them the RAM cage screws were frozen in. Impossible to remove without stripping the heads off. :p
  7. MacVidCards Suspended

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hollywood, CA
    Like a month ago I got $300 for my set of 5150s.

    I listed them "Buy it Now" and made sure to have every possible way to id them in searchable fields. (x5150, SLAED, XEON etc)

    I also specifically mentioned in the ad that they were fresh working pulls from a Mac Pro...thus calming any jumpy 2.0 QUad folks.

    They sold in under a week and I haven't heard boo from the buyer.

    My total cost to do 5160 was around $20-30 since I had fought to get those for $150-165 each. (another $30 for shipping and wrench, to be fair)
  8. bozz2006 macrumors 68030


    Aug 24, 2007
    Hey, man! Glad it went smoothly. Kinda fun, too, isn't it? When I did it, I messed with the RAM cage for like 15 minutes, but couldn't get it. So, yeah, the lower heat sensor cable was a huge pain in the butt! I still haven't put my 5150s on ebay yet. I guess I'm holding onto them in case my 5355s explode or something. Anyhow, glad everything went well!
  9. OSXconvert thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2002
    Brooklyn, NY
    Well, that's a very good price. I just listed mine with a reserve here:|66%3A2|39%3A1|72%3A1234|293%3A1|294%3A50#ht_500wt_940

    Wish me luck.

    I have to say that this forum is really great--very helpful and constructive. Thanks again to all who've offered such great tutorials and photos.

  10. NEUengineer macrumors member

    Feb 11, 2010
    Dual core vs quad

    I have the same computer but with 2 Dual core 3.0's, not quad. Could i still upgrade to the Quad?

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