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MP 1,1-5,1 Next step

Jlames

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 26, 2020
24
4
OK, in continuing the upgrade on my 2009 MP, I maxed out both CPU and memory by swapping in a new 5690 and upping the RAM to48g (3x16g) 1600mHz leaving the 4th slot empty. I went with a 560 8G gpu and the Pixlas mod since I was in there anyway. My question is, for raw video processing power, would I be better off spending the next bucket of money on moving to a dual core processor (2x5690) or adding a new HighPoint SSD7101A-1 w/ 4 new SSDs since it still has my original quartet of spinning disk HDs up in the tray. I’ve read both sides of the issue with more people believing that video processing doesn’t utilize the number of threads necessary to warrant going to 12 core from the 6 I get with my new 5690. The performance is of course much-improved over my old set-up with the mods and now running Mojave but I’m still waiting forever for my FCPX, AE and Motion to load while I listen to the click-whirl-buzz of the disks. I’m anxious to hear your thoughts and as always, thanks for the info and recommendations.
 

jscipione

macrumors 6502
Mar 27, 2017
302
156
You don’t need a HighPoint SSD7101A, you need a single 1TB or larger NVMe SSD and a cheap PCIe adapter. While a bootable APFS RAID 0 is possible, it’s not very stable as every update will fail with “Failed to bless boot volume” because the update installer does not know how to write the boot volume to a RAID 0 volume. If you plan on staying on Mojave forever maybe that doesn’t matter to you. It’s a bit tricky to setup a bootable APFS RAID 0 but it can be done. The easiest way is to clone an existing drive to the RAID volume. I suggest getting a single disk, if you insist on getting an SSD RAID then you’ll be wasting your money, but that’s your choice. If you are running on a spinning rust hard drive (or 4) now, then getting an SSD will be the single best upgrade you can do.

You really didn’t need to do the Pixlas mod for a Radeon RX 560 as it only needs a single 6-pin power connector at the most. But since you already did, I would suggest upgrading to a used Radeon VII if you can find one as it is the fastest GPU available on Mojave (newer cards require Catalina for driver support.) The GPU will help to render faster, especially using FCPX. I would upgrade to an SSD before I would update the GPU.

As far as upgrading the CPU to a dual X5690 goes, well it would definitely help you because a lot of video editing processing is CPU based and doesn’t use the GPU and multi-core, although this is more true for Adobe Premier Pro than FCPX. However, finding a dual CPU tray is so prohibitably expensive that it would be cheaper to buy a whole new Mac Pro than it would be to buy just the tray. The single X5690 CPU you have is probably fine, and I wouldn’t worry about getting a dual tray at all. Remember that the second package (Intel terminology for CPU) will only help with multi core tasks, which while video encoding is one of those tasks, there are inevitably single core filters and effects that will receive no benefit from the second package. So while a second package would help with certain tasks like exporting, other tasks like dragging along the timeline would receive no benefit.
 

Jlames

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 26, 2020
24
4
What an outstanding response. Thank you. As for Mojave, it’s just as far as I’ve taken the system thus far after beginning with High Sierra. I’m seeing how things settle and what works and what doesn’t having never done anything like this before so I’d think that Catalina is probably the next step. I’m always learning from people like you so, h would you cope with the fail to boot issue? Waiting to boot up is far down the list of concerns for me. The top two issues are editing speed and reliability. I don’t have it set up to RAID now and the 4 SSDs was simply for media storage while I’m accessing it for editing.
 

jscipione

macrumors 6502
Mar 27, 2017
302
156
What an outstanding response. Thank you. As for Mojave, it’s just as far as I’ve taken the system thus far after beginning with High Sierra. I’m seeing how things settle and what works and what doesn’t having never done anything like this before so I’d think that Catalina is probably the next step. I’m always learning from people like you so, h would you cope with the fail to boot issue? Waiting to boot up is far down the list of concerns for me. The top two issues are editing speed and reliability. I don’t have it set up to RAID now and the 4 SSDs was simply for media storage while I’m accessing it for editing.
Get a single NVMe SSD to use as your boot drive, if you want a super-fast scratch disk, also get HighPoint SSD7101A and 4 more SSDs, but that is going to cost you, so you’ll really have to weigh your options before making that purchase.

Unfortunately there’s not a lot you can do about boot time, the best thing you could do to improve that other than an SSD would be to remove some RAM as it counts the RAM on boot, and the more you have the longer it takes to count, so that will shave a few seconds off your boot time.

I’d suggest staying on Mojave unless you need Catalina for driver support for a Radeon RX 5700XT or W5700. There are some downsides to Catalina on a classic Mac Pro like losing turbo boost.
 
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