Macpro for gaming?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by jchall30, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. jchall30 macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #1
    I am in the market for a new system and am wondering what you all think of the base 2010 quad core with the 5870 upgrade? I would be using it with the 27 inch led cinema display as well as the current 24 led I already own. I will also be boot camping windows to play certain windows only games. All opinions are welcome. :)
     
  2. Snowguy macrumors member

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    Northern Minnesota
    #2
    The Mac pro base is not worth the price. Build yourself an awesome gaming PC and use the leftover cash to buy a Mini server...Unless you're using the Mac for exclusive Apple graphics software. Otherwise the Mini would do well in combination with a gaming pc.
     
  3. gullySn0wCat macrumors 6502

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    #3
    The base quad MP is not really a good deal, especially for gaming. The 5870 is a good card, but is not the in the same league as the current (soon to be obsolete) generation of video cards.

    Having said that, I use the original quad MP from 2006 for playing games and it still bottlenecked by GPU and not CPU / RAM in even eg. Crysis2 so your machine is capable, just don't expect to be able to run new games at 60fps/max or even high settings.
     
  4. jchall30, Oct 9, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2011

    jchall30 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #4
    Let me add a little more to my question. This would also serve as my main computer. I have a 2009 iMac now that I would be replacing. What processor would be recommended if not the base quad? How would a current iMac compare to the Macpro? Building a pc is not a option for me as I just don't want to go that route to be honest. I am a Apple guy. :D

    ----------

    Oh and one more thing. The games I would mostly be playing are MMO's. World of Warcraft and the soon to be released Star Wars The Old Republic
     
  5. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

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    #5
    The hex-core Mac Pro is the best all-around value, if it's in your budget. It's a good balance of core count and clock speed.

    And regarding MMOs, none of them really have monster GPU requirements, in comparison to some FPS games. WoW runs well in most GPUs made within the last 3 years with relatively maxed out settings and from what I've gathered from the TOR beta testing, it isn't particularly demanding, either. Still waiting for my beta invite on that one... :p Been pre-ordered on the game for months.
     
  6. jchall30 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #6
    Waiting on my beta invite as well. Been preordered since August :). I really want the Macpro for the upgradability. Which ever I get I will be adding more ram and possibly a SSD drive.
     
  7. Draeconis macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    I bought a base Mac Pro a year ago, ad use it as my main machine. Gaming-wise, it's pretty good, runs Left 4 Dead 2 at 2560x1440 at 60fps solidly (in OS X), and I've played a number of other games on it and they've not once slowed down at all. Considering upgrading the CPU to a W3670, already upped the RAM to 8Gb, might get an Intel SSD for it, and hopefully when they update the Mac Pro line they'll release new graphics cards so we can upgrade that too :)
     
  8. chaosbunny macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

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    #8
    I bought the 2010 2.8 quad Mac Pro with the 5870 gpu about a year ago, when it came out and was considerable more value for money. Hex upgrade was too expensive for me. It's been a great machine that is very fast for everything I throw at it - mostly Adobe CS, Cinema 4D, some video encoding and gaming. So far every game runs great at high/max settings at 2560x1440 on my 27" Dell monitor.

    I'l just list a few:
    OSX: Starcraft2, Dragon Age 2, Portal 2, Left4Dead 1+2, ... etc.
    Windows 7: Total War Shogun 2, Metro 2033, Fallout New Vegas, Batman Arkham Asylum, Mass Effect 1+2, ... etc.

    Sorry, can't think of everything right now - because I'm not at home.

    That said, I wouldn't advise you to buy the same machine right now. One year ago its value for money was ok, but now it is not anymore. You mentioned you have a 2009 iMac, why don't you wait for a couple of months for the next Mac Pro revision?
     
  9. jchall30 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #9
    Thanks for the reply. Are we sure that a replacement is coming in a couple months? If that is the case I can wait that long but probably not till next year. I'm sure that if I decide to go ahead and get it it will be great machine for a few years to come.
     
  10. blunti macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 15, 2011
    #10
    I tried Rage on my 12c 2.93 last night, and it runs without a hitch with max settings :)
     
  11. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #11
    Right now, you are probably better off with the new iMac (top-end model). The CPU is faster then MacPro and it runs modern games (I played Witcher 2 and Deus Ex 3 on native resolution and decent settings).
     
  12. Vylen macrumors 65816

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    #12
    If that's the case, then don't bother with a Mac, and you don't need to build your own PC. Just buy any "gaming rig" from a computer store for a much more reasonable price. Then you can upgrade it as you wish.

    Even if you are an Apple guy, it doesn't mean you have to throw your money away. The only reason to otherwise get a Mac Pro is if you need to use OS X specific applications that are processor intensive.

    If not, then keep your iMac if you like OS X, then keep a windows-based gaming rig for when you need it.
     
  13. chaosbunny macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

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    #13
    The iMac has a processor that is a little bit faster than the base Mac Pro's, but a slower mobile gpu! And the gpu matters far more for gaming.
     
  14. jchall30 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #14
    Money isn't the issue and I do not want to have multiple machines as I do not really have the room for that. I have looked at the new iMacs and they do look nice but really are not upgradable past what you get initially. How does the 5870 stand up to the 6970m?
     
  15. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

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    #15
    The 5870 will wipe the floor with a 6970M. Almost double the stream processors and texture units. The 6970M does support newer technologies (such as OpenGL 4.1), but from a raw performance perspective, mobile chips generally won't come to close to what desktop chips can do.
     
  16. gullySn0wCat macrumors 6502

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    #16
    The new MP will have a much much nicer graphics card if you can wait a few months.
     
  17. Neodym macrumors 65816

    Neodym

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    #17
    No-one here is working in Apple's management (or would admit it ;) ), so best we can do is guesswork.

    General agreement is that Apple is waiting for new Xeon CPU's from Intel to appear, which they will do towards the end of the current calendar year (according to Intel's roadmap).

    Some people were speculating whether Apple may get access to the new chips a few weeks earlier, but to be on the safe side you better consider the first quarter of 2012 as probable release timeframe for a new MacPro.

    And then there still is the announcement of a mysterious product transition introducing a new product (in Apple's last conference call) which will load Apple's balance in the near future. There has been speculation in various directions as to which product this could be - amongst them an Apple TV set (not AppleTV, but a TV set by Apple), iPhone 5 or a completely redesigned Mac Pro...
     
  18. fotomiami macrumors newbie

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    #18
    What about a Mac Pro 5,1 with dual 5770 cards instead of a 5870?
     
  19. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #19
    This answers your question right there. Truth be told you want a Mac 1st and foremost, then you want a Mac Pro as your choice system . . . at this point go for it and then consider your options for gaming at a tertiary decision.

    In other words, you aren't looking for the best gaming rig and deciding if a Mac or PC is better, you are looking for a Mac Pro and want to know how you should configure it to game.

    So . . . with that said, yes, it's a decent rig, but you will be found wanting more from the GPU. I am not a GFX card nerd so I am not too sure about how the "top end" GPU config for the Mac Pro will handle games, especially under bootcamp. All in all though, I don't hear and haven't experienced any major issues with running games on a Mac Pro other than the lack thereof of any Mac coded games and/or the time it takes the programers to write a game for the Mac.
     
  20. Neodym macrumors 65816

    Neodym

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    #20
    If you think of linking two graphic cards together using CrossFire(X):

    I doubt you could do that under OSX for improved gaming performance.

    And i'm not sure whether Windows would be able to do so via Bootcamp or whether you'd need low-level support (BIOS/EFI) possibly not present on a MacPro.
     
  21. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #21
    I know that Crossfire won't work under OSX but there has been some buzz about it working under Windows Vista and XP via bootcamp on other Mac Pro systems.

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/1375420?threadID=1375420&tstart=0

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=556033
     
  22. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #22
    That specific setup is a pretty bad move. Crossfire does not work under OS X. It does under Windows, but the 5770 does not scale well in crossfire. Also, the price of two 5770 is around the price of a single 5870. The 5870 has twice the performance of the 5770 and none of the drawbacks of Crossfire.

    To the OP, the 2010 MP with a 5870 is great for gaming. It is a poor choice from a price/performance perspective, but it will certainly do the job quite well.
     
  23. fotomiami macrumors newbie

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    Dec 27, 2006
    #23
    I understand, but I have an older mac pro with a 5770 and a 7300GT sitting in storage. Just purchased a refurbished 5,1 mac pro that comes with a 5770 itself. Wanted to see if its worse using or just selling it off.

    like user jchall30, i plan on partitioning my boot drive with Win7 64 bit, mainly to have Star Wars TOR when its released later this year.
     
  24. jchall30 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 9, 2011
    #24
    Thanks for all the replies so far. Some good thoughts have been put out there. These decisions are never easy. :D. MMO's are what I play most but as I said earlier. I like the idea of being able to change some components to keep the Macpro up to date which really can't be done on a iMac. I just want the best Mac I can get for gaming. They all do what I need otherwise
     
  25. goMac macrumors 603

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    #25
    To give you an idea of how long a Mac Pro lasts for gaming... With my 2008 Mac Pro, I put in a Radeon 5870 for $450, and I can run Deus Ex 3 on full settings absolutely no problem.

    They really are long lasting machines. I replace machines at the end of their AppleCare (so it's overdue for replacement), but this machine could keep playing games well for probably another 2-3 years.
     

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