Mac Pro-Memory, Hard Drive, Monitor Questions

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by markw10, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. markw10 macrumors 6502

    Sep 4, 2006
    Okay, I did it! I went to an Apple Store today and bought the new base model Mac Pro, 2.8Ghz. I also added the Wi-Fi option. They said they had several Mac Pro's in stock and also the Wi-Fi option. They just charged me $43 for the option and installed it for free in about an hour. I had the idea it was user installable but the guy claimed it requires soldering and I definitely don't want to do it. I decided to do all the expansion on my own to save money so here are some questions I have.

    1. Memory-First, I have 2GB now. This computer will be used regularly by two people so will often have two ID's on. Also, there will be a lot of multitasking such as running Office Word while Adobe Photoshop CS3 is running, Mail, Safari, iCal, maybe Numbers, things like that. Both of the users are heavy multitaskers. We will be installing Windows on it with either VMWare or Parallels. We're still trying to choose which Virtualization program to use and appreciate any advice with that. The question is how much memory I should have. I know someone with a MBP who has used both VMWare and Parallels and claimed 3GB was sluggish but it was good with 4GB but should I go to 6GB or maybe even 8GB?

    The second part of that question is what memory should I get? I have had good luck with Corsair in a Mac Mini. Also, do I have to add the memory in pairs? I have read it has 2 cards with 4 slots each. Can I add two 1GB sticks or can I add 1 2GB stick, etc?

    2. Hard Drive. I plan to replace the hard drive inside and go to likely 750GB and then add 2 1TB hard drives in bays 2 and 3. I plan to use the version of RAID which will mirror those two drives. I don't need a super fast drive. I don't want the slowest on the market but I want something medium speed but most important is a reliable drive at a good price since I'm buying 3 hard drives.

    3. Monitor-I'm looking for a good 20-22" LCD Monitor. Once again I don't need the most state of the art, best picture, just something that is maybe a little above average. Any suggestions?
  2. peterjun macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2007
    1. 4 GB seems to be fine. 6-8 GB is an overkill in what you're doing. OWC has some of the latest memory for the mac pro, check the other 100 threads about this.

    2. newegg sells some great Hardrives for cheap. If you transfer lot of big files make sure it has a 16 mb cache. Don't raid the drives unless you know what you're doing. Serial ATA 3 gb/s drives are pretty fast as it is.

    3. There is a rumor (also again check the other 100 pages about this) that Apple is releasing a new ACD. If you want to save money wait till the release date and grab a used older ACD...
  3. netdog macrumors 603


    Feb 6, 2006
    Congrats on the new Pro. I bought the same sans WiFi.

    As to your questions, prepare for the future...

    OWC/Macsales in the USA is offering 4 x 2GB for $399 (qualified RAM). A great deal IMO. Will give you 10, and leave you four open slots (if you remove the 2 x 1GB down the road).

    I went with Samsung F1s for the 750s. They have a 32MB cache and I got a great price here in the UK. Super quiet, very fast and reliable. You might also look at Western Digital Caviar SE's. You do realize that 1TB drives still tend to be very expensive in terms of $/GB, whereas the 750GB drives are offering much better value now.

    ACD 20" or, better still, an ACD 23". Better than the consumer monitors (despite what people say here) and not as good or as costly as the top-end monitors. Wait until MacWorld to see if anything happens with the Apple Cinema Displays.
  4. student_trap macrumors 68000


    Mar 14, 2005
    'Ol Smokey, UK
    may i ask where? I have no clue where to buy hard drives on the cheap in the uk. If possible also, coudl you recommend a place to buy memory in the uk...and as a side note, is 3rd party memory ok, i remember reading about some sort of thermal thing that is only applied to the apple memory and without it your system could overheat?

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