Mac Pro 2006 what should i upgrade?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by khemist49, May 2, 2012.

  1. khemist49 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 2, 2012
    #1
    Hi Everyone,

    I just acquired a Mac Pro 1 1 with the following specs:

    2 x Xeon 2.66 dual
    4GB Ram
    2 x 250GB Harddrives
    7300 GT

    I have upgraded to the following:

    Lion 10.7.3
    32GB Ram
    Radeon 6870

    My question is, what else should i do to this computer? I'm not familiar with the Mac Pro's, i'd like to run Windows 7 with Boot Camp. Should i upgrade the CPU's? I'd like to do some gaming, though i'm not too interested in running everything on Ultra settings, i'm looking to play games like Diablo 3, Counterstrike Source, i've installed Skyrim and it runs OK on medium settings.

    Would a CPU upgrade make any difference? Is it worth spending $200-$400 on new CPU's?

    I'm using a 20 inch Cinema display too, not looking to upgrade the monitor i kinda like this one.

    Would it be wise to sell this one and upgrade to maybe an iMac?

    Please note i got this Mac Pro free of charge, including the memory upgrades, all i have paid for so far is the 6870.
     
  2. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #2
    I'd upgrade the CPUs to 2 x 4-core X5355, giving you an 8-core machine.

    You'll pay $200-$300 for the processors, probably closer to $200.

    It's not especially tricky, if you get the right tools.

    There are any number of threads about it on MR, linking to good youtube videos showing how to do it.

    I did it and am very pleased by the results.
     
  3. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
    #3
    Will this also improve gaming? All around the Mac Pro is stable, no slow-downs whatsoever. Although i haven't really done much, I installed CS5, my girlfriend tested some files and says it performs equally if not better than her 2009 macbook pro with 4gb ram.
     
  4. GermanyChris macrumors 601

    GermanyChris

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2011
    Location:
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    #4
    start cost benefiting..

    DDR2 667 ECC memory is quite expensive..

    Those processors are $300ish

    New video Card $100-$400

    and this is the last OS it's going to run..

    MP 1,1's are great, but I wouldn't be to inclined to sink money into it..

    but hey I've sunk a good amount of money into a G5 and would sink godawful amounts into a G5 quad if I could get my paws on a nice one..so mybe I should take my own advice :D
     
  5. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
    #5
    I already have 32gb of ram, and a 6870 video card
     
  6. GermanyChris macrumors 601

    GermanyChris

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    #6
    Do 6870's work in 32bit? It's an honest question..
     
  7. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
    #7
    My 6870 works fine, i was playing skyrim last night
     
  8. GermanyChris macrumors 601

    GermanyChris

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    #8
    Great..so you've done all the upgrading..why were you asking? The only thing left is is some 5355 or 5365..
     
  9. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
    #9
    Well I'm asking because I'm new to this, I will upgrade CPU but will there be a significant difference to justify the $ spent?
     
  10. flatfoot macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    #10
    The 5365s are still quite expensive, so with them the performance gain per Dollar (or any other currency) isn't quite justifiable.
    The 5355s, however, can be had for reasonable prices. Then it depends on what you do with your Mac Pro: In single-threaded applications your upgraded Mac Pro will be just as fast as before the upgrade due to the clock-speed not having changed.
    For multi-threaded applications, however, like Handbrake for example, you will have about twice the performance since you'll have 8 cores as opposed to the 4 cores you have now.
     
  11. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
  12. flatfoot macrumors 65816

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    Aug 11, 2009
    #12
    Your gaming experience won't benefit form the upgrade since most games don't even use 4 cores.
    I don't use CS5 so I don't know whether it is multi-core aware. Test it yourself: Open Activity Monitor from the Utilities folder inside your Applications folder and have a look at what the CPU load does when your using your favorite filter or whatever in CS5.
     
  13. strwrsfrk macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    Location:
    Arlington, VA, USA
    #13
    Take a look at x5355s on eBay (2.66 Quads; two of them for 8 cores total). About $75/ea if you shop around: http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from...at=3667&_sop=1. This provides a 1:1 core performance swap, meaning you will not see any performance hits on single-threaded applications (like games). The additional cores will help with threaded applications, like many programs in Adobe CS5.

    Some people get L5320s and "hack" them to run at 2.33GHz (up from 1.86 GHz), as seen here: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthre...highlight=1+86. Never done it myself, but I have ordered these ($22 for the pair) and am performing the upgrade within several days. If your budget is tight (and it may not be, seeing as you've gotten 32GB RAM and a 6870), this might be the way to go. After the hack you'll only see a 333 MHz drop in single-threaded applications, and the doubling of cores will improve threaded applications.

    My $0.02 is to get at least X5355s, and get X5365s if you are planning on keeping this thing for several years and can justify $300 more.
     
  14. khemist49 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 2, 2012
    #14
    Thanks everyone. Will be running tests later.
     
  15. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    Location:
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    #15
    People say that it's best to get the SLAEG stepping for the X5355 chips.

    The earlier steppings (SL9YM is a commonly-seen one) are sometimes less expensive.
     

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