New Mac Pro Quad or Octo

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by bumzo1, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. bumzo1 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 31, 2009
    Dallas, TX
    Hi I've been saving for quite a while waiting for apple to release these mac pros and now they finally have. Originally I was going to get the base model 2.8 mac pro and have saved accordingly. i was wondering if it is worth the upgrade in the long to upgrade to the octo even though it costs $700 more. i mainly will use the machine for final cut express (hope to get studio soon after) and I am starting to use photoshop more and more often. Either way I was planning to upgrade the ram to at least 8 (originally wanted 10 with old mac pro). I also don't want to pay $2500-3200 and have an imac outpower it in a year or two. so should I get the 2.66 quad or the 2.26 octo or possibly wait for the old 2.8s or 3.0s to hit the clearance section. Which one is best for longevity, speed, and price for what I am doing. any comments are helpful as every time I ask a friend which configuration to go with I end up changing my mind. I would like to hear from people that actually use the different mac pros to help me decide as I hope to do the same once I join this elite group.

    Thank you.
  2. tonyeck macrumors 6502


    Sep 3, 2004
    Las Vegas, NV
    If you are on the fence I recommend waiting for the benchmark tests to be honest. Some believe the Quad 2.6 will match the old Octo 2.8, but only time will tell.

    I personally went with the quad 2.66 due to the increased cost of the Octo, and while I am sure it's worth it, my usage of 8 core's is limited as I only dabble in FCE as I mainly work with the Creative Suite (CS3) and Lightroom 2.

    I was tempted for 8 cores due to my Canon 5D mkII being such a hog with it's 1080p video!
  3. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Here's my thoughts that I posted in another thread (this is coming up a lot)...

    I would definitely recommend the quad-core. There are very few apps (any?) that can utilize 8 cores, especially used by the common man... whereas every application can benefit from increased clock speed.

    Only someone who's time is money for rendering or video encoding (i.e. a studio professional) should really consider an 8-core in my opinion. For anything else, an 8-core is going to be way too much CPU compared to other bottlenecks in the system (i.e. I/O). Even then, as I said, unless your time is money, you will never get the ROI out of an 8-core system other than bragging rights.

    If you have money to burn, you would be much better off with a couple of SSD drives than spending that on another four cpu cores.

    Also keep in mind that Nehalem uses hyperthreading which actually allows for 8 threads to execute on a 4 core processor giving you massive parallelism. In addition, OpenCL has proven that using the GPU for parallel tasks is far more effective than more CPU... an endorsement for a good graphics card vs. more CPU.

    Good system performance is much more about balance than about spending massive amounts of money in just one area (i.e. CPU or memory)
  4. MacFan27 macrumors newbie

    Mar 2, 2009
    Well put virtual. This is the case in PC gaming as well where I'm more knowledgeable. People get too caught up in the Processor game and don't realize the price premiums on MHZ and Cores...when in reality a RAID HD or 8GB of RAM makes more sense. I'm also considering the Quad and a 24 LED... The 8 core is too much for a lot of people I would guess. It's a price premium and then 2 years later its way "outdated" anyway.
  5. bumzo1 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 31, 2009
    Dallas, TX
    You just sold me on the quad tyvm now the question is 2.66 or 2.93 :)

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