New Mac Pro Quad Core advice, potential to upgrade?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by polterdice, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. polterdice macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2009
    Los Angeles, CA
    I'm usually a sucker for spending too much on new things, so advice is always nice. My PC is 8 yrs old and I'm excited to switch to Mac (kinda required, I use FCP).

    I'm looking at getting the new Quad Core Mac Pro at 2.66 3GB 640GB HD with a GT 120. My goal is to go bare bones and upgrade later when prices come down a bit and I have a greater need for speed.

    Currently I'm a student and plan to also get Adobe's Creative Suite (woot for photoshop), Final Cut Studio, perhaps Logic Studio, among other software. Mostly it'll be for digital media editing.

    I feel if I'm going to put money into a system it might as well go towards one that will last with potential for upgrades.

    I believe I read somewhere that the 8 core uses a different motherboard, so would I be stuck with a Quad core? Is it worth it at this point to invest in an 8 core? Is it realistic to replace mac processors and/or motherboards over time?

    I would upgrade the ram and add HDs from 3rd parties and eventually get the Radeon 4870 for dual display. Or would it be best to add multiple GT 120s, or even just start with a 4870?

    I plan to start with one display; is the 24" LED from Apple the best option? (not interested in the 30")

  2. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
    As Far as we know, the Quad Core uses a Single Slot Mobo, and the Octo Core uses a Dual Slot Mobo.

    Upgrading CPU's, I Guess they would have to be matching in the Octo, and we wont really know until someone tries it.

    I Would get a GT120/130 and a 4870, Go for the 2.66 Octo, and Leave the rest Stock, add a 1Tb Drive, and 16Gb Ram. 24" Apple Display is said to be one of the best, but Glare could be a problem.
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Probably worth it to get a low end dual CPU machine, and upgrade memory, GPU, drives as cash permits.

    As the programs take advantage of the greater threading opportunities with Snow Leopard and beyond the programs will do better with the 2.26GHz dual CPU, than a slightly faster single CPU 2.66GHz machine.

    Same general story as the first time people had the single/dual CPU choice when OS X was coming out -- this time it being Snow Leopard that'll change things a bit.
  4. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    The mobo in the Quad core is different, supporting only one CPU and half the RAM (assuming you can use 4GB chips).

    Definitely invest in the Octo-core for long-term and the heavy lifting you seem to be doing. Bare minimum RAM, HDD and graphics card. You can upgrade all those things later easily and more cheaply than Apple allows (except maybe the GPU...)

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