OG Mac Pro 2006 - Installed the new SSD, computer runs fine... when to get a new MP?!

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Sean Dempsey, Sep 20, 2010.

  1. Sean Dempsey macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    So gents,

    I've had this 2006 Mac Pro for 39 months.

    She performs as well as the day I bought her. "Multivac", I call her. Same config since day 1 of June 2007, except now instead of the Raptor SATA, there's a OWC SSD as the boot/apps drive.

    This thing handles everything I throw at it just fine. I do web development and grand format printing. Photoshop, Indesign, and Illustrator, day in an day out. And then always alt-tabbing to dreamweaver to code or transmit to FTP, or whatever else. It also acts as my AppleTV server with a Terabyte internal drive for storing TV shows and movies.

    My question is - For $230, I can add 4 more gigs of ram, bringing me to 9. Then, I could add a Velociraptor as my files drive. At this point, all I Am really limited on is the CPU, and GPU. But I feel like I can still get more performance out of it with Velociraptors and RAM. And then if I want a 2011 Mac Pro, I can just take the SSD and Velociraptors to the new machine.

    So, since the drives are transferable, at what point do you say "This 2006 Mac Pro CPU and RAM is too slow!!!"

    Would you say to NOT get more ram, but instead save for a new Mac Pro? I really like new computers, but this thing just keeps on trucking.

    I am debating on getting a pair of 500gb drives to replace the pair of 320gb drives that I currently use for all my storage. Seems like WD Black or Baracuda 7200.12 are faster than their older counterparts.

    Would you say that a 2006 Mac Pro with a SSD boot, and then some WD Blacks for storage, more RAM, and maybe a Velociraptor would max out this machine. I'm not willing to risk a CPU upgrade, unless it was 100% guaranteed.... but them I'm like 1000 dollars in to upgrades I can't transfer to a new Mac Pro like I can the SSD and VRaptors.

    It's just theory right now, since I don't have the need or budget for a new Mac Pro when this one works so great. But if I can grab a few new drives and really TURN UP THE JUICE, I might just see if I can get 5 years out of this beast.

  2. JesterJJZ macrumors 68020


    Jul 21, 2004
    I'm in the same boat as you. My 2006 has been a champ. Recently put in a 4870. About to add 2xSSDs for boot when I upgrade to Snow Leopard. I plan on keeping it around until it starts failing on me, or my work becomes unbearable on it. I do HD video editing and effects and I'm still fine with this baby. Yeah, my renders may take a little longer than I'd like, but I manage just fine.

    Just finished this a while back. A good 2000 hours of post. If my machine could handle this I'll be ok for a couple more years.

  3. lloyd709 macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2008
    I can't see the reason to upgrade unless you do a LOT of heavy processing. I've got 12 gig of ram, a 120 Gig SSD boot drive (in an optical bay) and 2 Raid 0 fast 1 gig drives as my main files drive - with the a 2 Gig backup drive in the second optical space and a separate Windows 7 bootcamp drive in the 4th main drive space. For anything other than processes that max out the cores (very few for me) everything is just about as fast as I practically need it to be.

    Processing 100 raws takes me about 8 minutes while it takes my mate who has a new hexcore machine about 4 minutes but I probably process on average about 50 raws per day - I can handle waiting an extra 4 minutes. My mate hasn't got an SSD boot drive or a raid setup in his machine so I reckon my machine feels snappier than his for everything else (I haven't actually worked on his though I have to admit).

    I thought it worth writing this because I think an upgraded 2006 Mac Pro (lots of RAM, SSD boot drive and RAID) in lots of professional situations is as practical as a new machine for all but regular heavy processing tasks.
  4. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    look for smart hdd upgrades wd has a lot of gear with 5 yr warranties.
  5. philipma1957, Sep 21, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 11, 2010

    philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
  6. Sean Dempsey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    I only have around 200 gigs of regular access data, and 600 gigs of Movies/TV shows. The Movies/TV are on their own 1TB drive which I don't back up, 40 gigs of work files are on a 320gb drive, and 160gb of personal files are on another 320gb drive.

    I just can't bring myself to get a 1TB drive, and then use only 200gb of it. And then have to back it up somewhere where space is wasted again.

    I prefer to have my work files and my personal files split onto seperate drives, in case one drive fails. And then I also back them up to separate external drives, incase one of those fail also.

    So it's a little pricey to have to have a separate drive for each "type" of file internally, and then a mirrored external for each one.

    Right now, I have 3 internal storage drives (work 40gb, personal 120gb, movies 600gb), and then 3 external FW800 drives (system backup, work backup, personal backup).
  7. Macinposh macrumors 6502a

    Jun 7, 2006
    In the same boat as Mr.Dempsey.

    And I have a clear plan as well : When I need to.

    Using the 1.1 with 10Gbs for LR,PS,FCS+Shake daily and the machine is still kicking just fine (knocks wood x 3...). And as the programs lag that badly behind the curve as they do,well,I am in no hurry updating either...

    Even when the PS & FCS goes all multicore,then I get a 2x4 time speedup,even with the OLD MACHINE.

    PS runs bigger hasselblad files just fine and people have no probs editing Red on the same machine either.
    So,in the perfect world,1-3 years more out of the box and then a update.
    Maybe a SSD update just to check them out....
  8. Honumaui macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2008
    I think part of it is do you make your living off it and how does the math work out in return ?

    we are replacing our two 1,1 machines and the 3,1 is staying with us for another year ? the 5,1 is now up and running and doing well
    and putting in SSD and 1222x raid in the 3,1 bumped the performance back up also of course Cs5 and Snow Leopard and memory is at 14 gigs might bump it to 20 ?

    for us the speed jump to the 5,1 over the 1,1 is worth it I did some PS tests using retouch artist and lloyds test then did our own files and what we do ? this was just to get a baseline and then did the same on our 3,1 ? that way I could compare what the new ones were doing with the other two tests and compare our files and how they compared to those baselines ? does that make sense :)

    the one nice thing if you buy nice SSD and HDD now you can put them into your newer machine later ?

    since we rotate two machines ! I used to rotate and have 3 workstations but now we are down to two :)

    I tend to buy every other model and then do the storage inbetween those models ! so from the G5 it went to the 1,1 then the 3,1 then the 5,1
    so next year our new 5,1 will get new faster HDDs to give it a more modern boost and the 3,1 might get replaced ? or might not have to see since I was not impressed that much with this years updates ? I would say unless you really think its going to pay off do the storage and save up :)

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