My Mac Pro is being delivered Thursday... got some questions before it arrives.

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Rychy, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. Rychy macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    Well I finally ordered a Mac Pro last weekend and it's arriving on Thursday... 2.8 Octo w/8800GT, I almost went Quad, but I think I'm going to be very glad I didn't. Anyways on to the questions...

    1) Display - I haven't picked up a display yet... I think I'm going to wait for the ACDs to be updated before I go all out on a screen, so can anyone suggest a cheaper but decent 22"-24" display?

    I saw a Samsung 245BW at Costco for $400, any opinions on this screen? I'd actually like to spend less than that since it's only going to be a temporary screen.

    2) Surge Protector or UPS - I didn't actually know what a UPS was until I stumbled across a thread about them recently. Would it be wise to invest in one of these or is a good surge protector enough? I was looking at some APC units at Best Buy tonight. Is that a good brand to go with?

    3) Windows - I have a copy of XP Home Edition, I'm going to need to slipstream SP2 on it to get it installed, but my real question is should I stick with XP Home or go with Pro (or Vista)? I hear XP Pro can see more Cores and RAM... I guess I won't be doing a whole lot with Windows, installing Steam to play the original Half-Life and helping out friends with computer problems, that's about for the near future.

    4) Speakers - Anyone recommend a decent pair of 2.1 speakers? I'm not an audiophile by any means.

    I think that's all I got for now... I'd appreciate any other tips anyone might want to throw at me. Unfortunately expanding RAM and HDD is going to have to wait for a little bit, but this computer should last me quite a while so that's ok.
  2. DJJONES macrumors 6502

    Mar 9, 2008
    Newengland usa!
    check it brudda man this is the screen i have ITS AMAZING!!!
    i dont have a mac desktop but i have a hp quad core lol but shows great
    im sure with that crazy video card on the mac pro it will display awesom
  3. GoKyu macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2007
    New Orleans
    1. I have the Samsung 245BW too and I love it - it may be more than you want to spend, but it'll certainly be a good second display if you need one. I also do a lot of color correction on it (using X-rite's eye-one Display 2) and am getting excellent results from it.

    2. Absolutely get a UPS - not only is it a surge protector, it also keeps you safe should the power go out so you can shutdown safely and not lose your work.

    3. I have XP Pro, works great. XP Home should work fine, but you'll only be able to use up to 2 cores max, I believe.

    4. I have the Bose Companion 5's...The Companion 2's would be nice, or the Klipsch 2.1 Promedia speakers are good too.
  4. DJJONES macrumors 6502

    Mar 9, 2008
    Newengland usa!
    im a dj so these are my everyday listening speakers and believe it or not i do a bit of mixing with them because they are some real world speakers.

    i bought myne for 80 bucks from bestbuy check those papers!!!!

    they take a huge beating im telling you and they can go louder then your ears will tolerate trust me u will get some pain in your ears before you get to there loudest point.

    200watts simple to set up

    sub get a bit wishy washy wen they get to loud but overall great set of desktop speakers wouldnt trade them for anything well maybe a macpro lol
  5. WardC macrumors 68030


    Oct 17, 2007
    Fort Worth, TX
    OK...I will try to shed some light and help you w/your questions.

    1) I own a 23" and a 30" Apple Display. THe new models have been updated with brighter lamps, the older models are only 270cd/m^2 and those are what they are selling on the Apple Store refurb site. They are tricky and not telling you that the newer models have brighter lamps. Look at the specs. I have seen that 24" Samsung at Sam's Club for $329 as well as a Westinghouse 24" - both displays are big and bright, 1920x1200 (same as 24") and use DVI, have great contrast ratios and response rates. All the specs looks good, and the monitors look great in person, although I have had no longterm experience with either. I would say - get the Samsung. Samsung has a good reputation for making excellent displays, and the price now is a steal. I paid $999 for my 23" Cinema Display in Jan 2007 and I kind of regret paying that much. If you consider going up to a 30", again, the Samsung 305T is the best bang for the buck, although some people will recommend the Dell...personally I am biased towards anything with a Dell logo on it.

    2. I don't use a UPS, just have a bunch of surge protectors. A good surge protector (or several) are good. If you live in an area with alot of random power outages, surges, or brownouts, you might consider a UPS. We have a switch-circuit-breaker box which will trip the breaker if a surge happens, so that's really not an issue. Sometimes here (in Texas) in Thunderstorm season, lightning will strike and the power will go out. I've never fried anything, in my whole life...probably because of the circuit breaker. If you have an old fuse box system you may think twice about it and consider the UPS.

    4. If you want to run Windows on your Mac Pro, your best bet is to get a full, license copy of Windows XP Professional SP2 (service pack 2). As a matter of fact, I just bought myself a copy today on eBay. Definitely buy it on eBay and NOT in the stores. OEM Copies on eBay will run you about $125 - $139, but if you buy it in stores it will run you over $250. My advice is stick with XP Pro, get a cheap (well cheaper) copy on eBay, it will save you lots in the end. Get the regular 32-bit version.

    4. OK...I have a really badass 2.1 system that I have been using since 1998 and I really frieking love them!! They put out great sound, they are LOUD and the bass is wobbly, rich, and deep, warm and mellow. The Bass is DEEP. They are Yamaha YST Powered Multimedia Speakers. I could not have been more happy with these speakers - one of the best computer investments that I have ever made. They have 2 stereo inputs so you can hook an iPod or a CD player to them as well as your computer out.

    Here is the site with all the models of computer speakers Yamaha makes, mine are the YSTM50 (the stereo minijack connectors, NOT the USB ones)

    (edit: added link, forgot to include originally in post)

    Hope this helps.
    Good luck!,
  6. cmturner2 macrumors member


    Jan 31, 2008
    Apex, NC
    1- For a temporary monitor the Samsung is fine (and at a great price).

    2- I can't begin to stress enough the value of a true UPS. APC is a fine brand, alternates are TrippLite and PowerWare. APC is the king of the hill, but either of the other two big names should do you fine.

    For a quick primer see:

    Especially the the list of common power problems. A surge protect does not protect your investment anywhere near as well as a UPS. Any serious workstation (i.e. a Mac Pro) demands one.

    3- Windows XP Pro SP2 32-bit. Get it as cheaply as you can before MS stops selling copies in June.

    4- I'm looking at the Klipsch myself. Currently I'm using Shure e3c's, so I can't really speak on the speakers.
  7. pastrychef macrumors 601


    Sep 15, 2006
    New York City, NY
    1. From what I've read, the Samsungs are very highly regarded. If you can, try to track down someone who has a Dell 2407 or 2408 and have a look. Those are also very highly regarded.

    2. If you can, definitely go with a USP with line conditioning. If for nothing else, then just for the peace of mind.

    3. Try checking out some places for OEM copies of Windows XP Pro. used to have them, I'm not sure if they still do.

    4. I've been using a set of SoundMatters MAINstage speakers for a while and have been very happy with them. However, I believe the model I have has been discontinued. The good thing is that they still have them at on their online outlet store for cheap. Have a look. Maybe they'll suit your needs.

    Good luck and enjoy your new Mac Pro!
  8. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Sep 4, 2006
    1) I would say just might as well buy the 23" ACD since I dont think it will get updated anytime soon. If you can pick one up for $500 on ebay or even cheaper and especially most of ebay sellers of the newer ACDs are going for $450-600 for pretty much new ACDs. I use the 23" ACD and its a gorgeous display!

    2) I just use a Surge Protector on all of the stuff on my sig.

    3) Windows - Just get the Vista and once again find it cheap on ebay. Or if your in college just pick one up at the campus computer/book store for like $5.

    4) Speakers - Altec Lansings are nice cheap/bang for buck. But I do prefer B&W (Bowers and Wilkins) :D
  9. Rychy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Aug 14, 2007
    Shoot my computer is being delivered today! Not that that's a bad thing I'm just not prepared.

    1) Can't decide yet... maybe I should just get a DVI to HDMI converter, so I can at least hook it up to my TV until I decide on a display.

    2) Now that I've been thinking about these UPSs, my last two computers both had power supply problems, so I think I'll definitely be getting one. I've kind of been pointed in the direction of this one,

    3) I think I'll just stick to my copy of XP Home for now, and update to Vista once it sucks less.

    4) I heard good things about those Klipsch speakers in the past, I think I'll go with those ones.

    Thanks for all the input... got to make up my mind about the display soon though.
  10. adjuster macrumors member

    Nov 29, 2007
    1) The Apple displays use a high quality "SPS" display. There are less expensive displays that you could use as a second display. Other SPS displays are more expensive. If I am wrong, please let me know.

    2) I will make a categorical statement: Anyone who has a computer they want to see again needs a UPS. What you are concerned about is spikes weakening the computer's power supply and circuit boards when the power is abruptly shut off. In many areas, the power is "dirty" and loaded with spikes that are very hard to see. Brownouts also cause stress. A good ups that filters the AC or regenerates clean AC is extremely important. For example, we had a surge protector on my wife's Dell computer. When the power failed, the Dell went into never never land and I have to spend a great deal of time getting it back to normal. When power failed with a UPS connected, no problem. A good UPS will also shut down the computer before the battery runs out of power.
  11. irwanation macrumors newbie

    Mar 12, 2008
    I use a Dell 2407WFP 24" on my MBP. My macpro is arriving tomorrow.. so the MBP will hand over ownership of the screen when it does. It works brilliantly for the price. I have no complaints. No banding issues or whatsoever that were widely mentioned about earlier revisions. The 2408 is out now. I think it should be just fine. I'm not sure how much it retails for in the US, but I think it's good enough to be a first monitor if you dont require spot on colour accuracy. But even if you do decide to replace it with a better screen at a later time, it should still make for a great 2nd screen. After all even apple uses the same panel in their 24" iMacs.
  12. jeffmc macrumors 6502

    Sep 21, 2007
    that screen is great i have it as well, the colors are slightly un-true. so if you're doing any photo or design work i'd pick up a spyder or some other calibrator to help it out.
  13. Cromas macrumors member


    Feb 21, 2008
    follow me, hehehe :cool:

    I waiting for the mac pro, arrives this week I hope so!

    1) the monitor, wait to buy any! and wait for the new cinema display!!! of apple, I wait for that

    2) the ups, I have APC RS 1500 with my G5 powermac, the ups support around 40min!!! with monitor, modem and speakers, airpor extreme! Its great, my mac never receive a shut off with stroms... or any thanks UPS!

    3) speackers I recomment the great Bose a little expensive but great...

    4) windows (sucks) but... I recomend get the XP Pro SP2 (more stability with mac, and support than vista...) run bootcamp for games and strong apps like maya or autocad, and use parallels for run simple apps on mac os x with coherence option. or download this torrent I recommed!

    with that 4 things more mac pro, you have more than a BEAST hehe

    I waiting for mac pro, 2x2.8, 500gb, 8800gt, 2gb ram, wireless keyb / mouse / airport extreme :p
  14. krye macrumors 68000


    Aug 21, 2007
    Don't waste your money on XP Pro if you only need Windows for only a few small things. But, XP Home only supports one physical CPU, so that is something to consiser.

    A UPS is a must! It's a surge protector, safely shutdown in the event of a black out, or brown out. By searching the forums, this seems to be the Mac Pro UPS of choice:
    A little expensive, but you don't want to risk killing your machine, or corrupting your hard drive. If you shop around consider that the PSU in your Mac is at least 650W, that combined with the 8800 and hdd, I would not go under 1000VA. MINIMUM! So juat save up for a 1500VA.

    Altec Lansing FX6201 speakers. They are awesome W04545&source=fr
  15. Soop53 macrumors regular


    Jan 20, 2008
    1. I, too, have the Samsung 245bw and it is awesome. Really struggled with purchasing the 23" ACD. It does look the best!
    2. I bought the RS 1500 and has kicked in twice since I purchased it two weeks ago. Awesome. Do yourself a favor and your Mac...get a UPS!!!
    3. It seems XP Pro SP2 32 bit is the Windows of choice. IF, you need Windows.
    4. I know three people who have the Bose and swear by them. I might have to save up for some. My old Altec Lansing serve me for now. Klipsch sound good also.
  16. irwanation macrumors newbie

    Mar 12, 2008
    You are right about that. I do a fair share of work on Aperture, and I always double check my photos on my MBP screen. Some things that look brilliant on my screen turns out quite crappy when my friends view my photos on their screen. I totally get what you mean by it showing things that are slighly untrue. Then again I'm not a commercial photographer. As for design work. I guess in car design you can get away with it. Would be a different story for graphic designers.

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