No compromise 2009 MP = 2.66 Octo?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by VirtualRain, Mar 23, 2009.

  1. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    If I buy a 2.93 Quad, I'll likely regret not having the added parallelism or RAM expansion.

    If I buy a 2.26 Octo, I'll likely regret not having the added clock speed.

    Either of these compromises is likely to instigate an upgrade/replacement earlier than would otherwise make sense for this level of machine.

    If I buy a 2.66 Octo, it seems like the least compromise... good clocks, 8 cores, massive RAM expansion.

    The extra cost of the 2.66 Octo, when factored over the added life this configuration buys me, is probably not that significant.

    The diminishing returns on the 2.93 Octo, further reinforce that the 2.66 Octo is probably the best purchase.

    Anyone else thinking this way?
  2. sparkie7 macrumors 68020


    Oct 17, 2008
    Yeh, the 2.66 Octo is what I would have bought. The 2.26 performance isn't compelling enough and the 2.93 is stratospheric price wise.

    In the end I went with a 2.8 Octo. I will wait for the next release
  3. mggm59 macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2009

    your reasoning corresponds with the conclusions of these (mostly video-oriented) benchs of all the Octos with 6GB that I just read (in French)

    For those who can't read French, they basically say that the 2.66 is the most cost-effective configuration (it already handsomely beats the 3.2 in single thread and it thrashes it in multi), but are quite impressed by the 2.26.

    They also conclude that with the current drivers the 4870 does not make any sense, but 10.5.7 is coming, so they are hopeful.

    The old 3.2 is basically beaten by the 2.26 in most tests (except single thread, but even there, by not so much, and therefore I conclude that the 2.8 would then be even less interesting). If we bring prices in the picture, one could still argue, but performance-wise, they are convinced.

    There is however, in my view, a blunder on the efficiency ratios, they are divided by 10.
  4. noushy macrumors regular

    Aug 27, 2008
    Detroit, MI
    Any of the octo setups

    I think any of the octo setups makes sense. The quad core single processor setups just isn't that great. Limited memory expansion (and ram is cheap by most accounts, I have 8 2gb ECC thermal equip dimms for under $300). In addition, the 2.26 almost beats the old 3.2. Come on, less energy usage, cooler running machine, and fair price for the entry 8 core make it the choice. The premium $1400 is to justify the $1200 intel charges to go from 2.26 to 2.66.

    The single processor machines are great if you do not use a lot of multithreaded apps, or need more than 4 cores. Then you will get tremendous bang for your buck, given that it is much easier to saturate 4 cores than 8, and you get the higher processor speeds.

  5. designed macrumors 6502


    Nov 8, 2005
    Yeah, the 2.66 (octo) is what I figured out to be the best option too. But there is a compromise and it's called "price", which is why I went with the 2.26 for the time being.

    Each one has his own way, but usualy I seem to favour the options where the compromise is the 'price'. Unfortunately that wasn't possible this time around.

    But in my opinnion you should go for the 2.66 octo if you can.
  6. sigmadog macrumors 6502a


    Feb 11, 2009
    near Spokane, WA
    Here is my point of view... if anyone cares:

    My goal is to achieve a balance between the following needs:

    • A bunch of RAM (16GB) to juggle multiple open apps at the same time (CS4 mainly, but other professional design apps as well).
    • Multi-processing power for the occasional 3D render and/or animation
    • Single processor power for apps that don't (or won't) take advantage of multi-cores
    • A price-point that is reasonable given the intended function of the machine as a profit generator and long-term design tool (6-8 years with luck)

    Since my multi-processing needs are mostly occasional, the 2.93 Quad-core would seem to fit my needs quite well, if it weren't for the RAM limitation. But let's assume that the Quad can be fitted with 16GB of RAM (which seems possible given some things I've read). Given that assumption, here is how the price appears to break down:

    2.93 Quad base price: $3000
    RAM upgrade (OWC, four 4GB sticks): $2000
    Price for 2.93/16GB Quad: $5000

    2.66 Octo base price: $4700
    RAM upgrade (OWC, eight 2GB sticks): $295
    Price for 2.66/16GB Octo: $4995

    So I lose a little bit in processing speed, but gain 4 extra cores for the same price. THE SAME FRIKKIN' PRICE!

    That makes the 2.66 the optimal configuration for my needs. I don't like the idea of RAM adding 2/3 to the cost of my system.
  7. bluesteel macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2007

    i nearly lost my mind trying to decide which one to get. i decided to go with the 2.26 8-core. i just couldn't justify another $1400 for the 2.66, or $2400 for the 2.93. its just not worth it unless you make a good income from it. even in that case its not worth the extra $$$, but if your making money from it, you can pay it off fast.

    another thing to factor in is how long your going to keep it. some people keep their mac desktops for like 3-5 years or more. i personally get a new desktop for every revision, pretty much every year or year and a half. i figured that if i got a $3800 2.26 8-core this time, that i'd be able to sell it on ebay next year for at least $2500. add $1400 to that, the cost if i upgraded to the 2.66 8-core right now, and you've got $3900. walla, another new mac pro next year. get it?

    lemme give you an example. i bought the first generation 8-core 3GHz Clovertown mac pro the day after it was released in april of 2007. It cost me about $4000. i sold it 16 months later on ebay for $3299 with two more years left on the apple care. i then bought the new 8-core 3GHz for $3699. you can have a new machine every year for a minimal amount out of your pocket if you know what to buy. problem with this new mac pro release is that the only 8-core that is really worth it's value is the 2.26GHz.

    i also have a feeling that mac pro prices will come down again in another year or more. and then the 2.66 and 2.93 8-core's value will drop quickly. meaning that if you spend $6000 on an 8-core 2.93, it'll be selling for $5000 refurbished at apple really soon. and next year it'll only be worth between $4000-$4500. at least thats my opinion having bought a new mac desktop every year for the past 12 years.

    that's my two cents.
  8. PowerPaw macrumors member

    Jan 15, 2009
    What is your intended use?

    If you don't already have one, for the same money you can get the 8 x 2.26GHz *and* a 30" ACD. What has more bragging rights?

    Are you seriously looking at shaving off a few seconds; for *professional* animation tasks or mathematical modelling - this may make sense or perhaps better still the 2.93GHz; otherwise its probably $1400 badly spent.
  9. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    I came really close to buying a 2009 MP and I would have gotten the 2.66GHz Octo and sucked up the difference in cost (which is steep, but probably worth it in the end). But, I ended up buying a 2008 2.8GHz Octo instead because it was a deal I couldn't pass up ($1899) and I ended spending about half the money I would have otherwise (and that even accounted for upgrading the RAM and adding hard drives, third-party of course).

    But, I would mostly agree with you to splurge for the 2.66GHz machine if you want an Octo. It's really too bad that Intel charges significantly more for MP capable Xeons (Bloomfield vs. Gainestown) at the same clock speed.
  10. bluesteel macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2007
    $1899!!! That's a great deal. I would have ate that up too if the deal had come my way. I ended up buying an 8-core 2.26.

    Great job on the 2.8 8-Core, fantastic!

Share This Page