Mac Pro for simple DAW usage ? (SSD & monitor question)

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by preservation82, Jan 5, 2016.

  1. preservation82 macrumors newbie


    Jan 5, 2016
    hi folks. first post here. have been out of the loop for a LONG TIME regarding all things Mac. bear with me please as i might need some hand-holding.

    my mid-2007 20" iMac has been chugging along just fine- running El Capitan without an issue - except for when it comes to using Reaper or Reason, my DAWs of choice. i think this is because i've got:
    2GHz intel core duo, 3GB 667 DDR2 ram, and 250gb HD.

    i've never used a Mac Pro, but had lots of music-friends urge me to look into one instead of just going to the Apple store and buying a new iMac. sure, why not ? after all, it won't set me back $1300+ and the specs could be nicer than what Apple is offering in their entry-level iMacs. these friends are also telling me that new Macs can be much harder (if not impossible) to upgrade.

    now it seems i've got a great line on an affordable Mac Pro:
    TADA !

    "Two 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon Processors (8 cores) 8 GB installed memory 500 GB Hard Drive 16x SuperDrive Bluetooth, WI-FI, OS 10.11 EL CAPITAN. "

    there's room to upgrade RAM, and room to put in an SSD which, i'm told, is the best thing since sliced bread.
    apparently i absolutely must do it.
    if i must, then, how can i find the right 250 or 500GB SSD to work with this Mac Pro ? is it a simple process to clone the disc drive and dump it onto an empty SSD ?

    next, i'm totally unfamiliar with what sort of monitor i'd need. Amazon has loads of really nice LED monitors for under $200, and i'd like to stay at or under that price point. does this mean i need to go w/ VGA, HDMI, or what ? the video card in the Mac Pro is an "ATI Radeon 256MB" - is this OK ? if not, should i upgrade it ? if so, to what ? i won't be doing games or watching movies on this - just general internetz and DAW stuff.

    is there hope for me ? am i venturing down the right path ?
    my needs are simple and my heart is open.
    teach me.
  2. DPUser macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2012
  3. Parigot macrumors member

    Oct 22, 2011
    Based on the firewire ports in the photo, it is not a 4,1 or 5,1. Probably a 3,1 based on the CPU specs.
  4. merlinmage macrumors member

    Mar 23, 2014
    Which I wouldn't buy at this point. 4,1 atleast.
  5. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    Be weary of pre-4,1 models. They do not have the upgrade flexibility of the 2009 and 2010/2012 models. I use a 2010 with Logic Pro X and lots of audio related gear/plugs. Mac Pro requires you to get your own monitor, which can be several hundred dollars at least for a good one. An iMac might not be the worst idea in your situation. If you can find a good deal on a 4,1 or 5,1 go for it. Upgrade the RAM to 16GB at least and make sure there is a decent GPU in there. SSDs can be had for around $100-$150 for ~500GB. If you have any additional questions please post.
  6. preservation82 thread starter macrumors newbie


    Jan 5, 2016
    thanks guys- ditched the idea of an old Mac Pro for a 2011 17" MBP. it has two drives (one is ssd), i5 processor, and i can upgrade the RAM for cheap. i'm sure it'll be great for my simple recording needs.

Share This Page