Mac Pro 3.1 or 4.1 as second computer - opinions?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by les24preludes, Mar 2, 2016.

  1. les24preludes macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    #1
    I use my second computer mainly for songwriting with Logic. Currently it's a 1.1 Mac Pro, so won't run the latest OS without trickery. Those early Mac Pros are FUN to customise. But which "good value" model to get?

    1. Eight core 3.1 - plenty fast
    2. Quad core 4.1 - upgradeable to 5.1
    3. Other?

    Opinions - what would you do?
     
  2. r6mile macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #2
    I have not used a 4,1, but the 3,1 is very capable and quite good value. I put in 32GB of RAM and a GTX680 in mine and this thing flies. Of course it won't take the fastest Xeons etc. but it also depends on how much money you are willing to throw at the machine.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 2, 2016 ---
    A 3,1 will also enable to carry over the RAM from your 1,1.
     
  3. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
  4. troy14 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Location:
    Las Vegas (Summerlin), NV
    #4
    Get a 4,1. Infinitely more things you can do/upgrade with it.
     
  5. les24preludes thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    #5
    I'm reading up on this as much as I can. Looks like the simple upgrade is 4.1 4 core to 5.1 6 core. Looking at the Youtube video, seems easy to do. I'm assuming the chips are available - the YT video used a W3680

     
  6. scott.n macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2010
    #6
    The answer to almost all "what cMP should I buy?" questions is the single-processor 4,1.
     
  7. DPUser macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    #7
    W3680 or 90 all over ebay. Prices on X5680 and 90 have risen, but I just paid $175 for a 3690 to drop in my second 4,1. Did the 4,1>5,1 hex update over three years ago with a new W3680 and it cost me a lot more, but has functioned beautifully ever since. Throw in some RAM and an SSD or four. Great for DAW work, and Vienna Pro allows multiple Macs to be networked for audio use (heavy VI) via ethernet.
     
  8. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #8
    There is an enormous selection of CPUs to choose from that work in the 4.1/5.1. Single or dual, 4 or 6 cores, different RAM speeds, and different maximum RAM capacities. Check out the table:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/mac-pro-cpu-compatibility-list.1954766/
     

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