own a mac 8 core but not techy and need...

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by flipswitch77, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. flipswitch77 macrumors newbie

    Dec 21, 2011
    ...help upgrading my tower to get the optimal performance for what I need.

    I am a freelance mograph artist and I currently use C4D and CS5... basically need advice to get my tower kicking as much ass as possible... i just purchased the 8 core last month and it has just the standard stuff... i added my old drives but I want to install a new ssd drive and a hefty amount of ram... any recommendations or advice? and is that all I can really do or are there other things I can do to upgrade this towers performance?... looking forward to any responses... thanks in advance!!!

  2. Sonhascome macrumors 6502

    Feb 18, 2010
    I'd go with an OCZ ssd, just got one in my computer and it's awesome! definitely upgrades performance.
  3. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    I remember that people do recommend to have a dedicated scratch disk for graphic programs. While some recommend to use a SSD for it, others are afraid of the additional wear killing the SSD early - and thus they recommend to set up a RAID-0 (Striping) from conventional hard disks if you really want/need the speed.

    In any case having one disk dedicated to being the scratch disk is said to have really positive effects on workflow.
  4. philipma1957, Dec 22, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2011

    philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    newegg has a sale today for a 90gb ssd 105 dollars it is a shell shocker sale so it has a short time limit 10 am to 1 pm pst or west coast time see the thumbnail. I don't like ocz but for a work disk the price is good.

    To be honest all my ocz issues were on ssd's purchased in 2009. 2 out of 3 were bad and service was slow for replacement. Still 105 bucks for a 90 gb ssd is tempting. it is a 3 hour sale

    Attached Files:

  5. highdefw macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2009
    VFX Artist here...

    I can vouch for OWC on the drives and ram.

    Here's my config for my 2009 2.26 8-core Pro:
    -120GB OWC SSD (OS and Apps)
    -18GB OWC Ram
    -2x 1TB Western Digital Caviar Black Drives in RAID-0 (Home Folder/Downloads/Projects)
    -2TB WD Green Drive for Time Machine Backup of RAID-0
    -2TB WD Green Drive for General Storage/Backup
    -2TB WD Green Drive for Windows 7 (not in use much, hence on a slower drive)

    Runs very well. Eventually I would like to upgrade to dual hex processors :)
  6. strausd macrumors 68030

    Jul 11, 2008
    I bought my 120GB SSD from OWC and have had no problems. Also bought all my RAM from them.
  7. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    You should share that solid state with me :p
  8. highdefw macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2009
    haha not a chance. easily worth the price of 10 Mac Pros...
  9. dansmac macrumors member


    Sep 11, 2011
    Temecula, California
    I use CS5 daily … and all day…for my business but not so much with motion. Pro photographer with a bit of video editing….here is my recommendations for what it is worth:

    Most Adobe applications, including CS5 stuff, do not take full advantage of multiple processors. 4 cores get the best, 8 cores OK, 12 cores actually slows down the applications. Your choice of 8 cores is good.

    Processor performance and main memory provide the overall best performance with CS5. What is your processor speed? Faster is better. Sweet spot for CS5 memory is 24GB with three 8GB RAM Sticks. Or 48GB with six sticks (only with dual processor models). I have tested and done many trials on CS5 PS and found with 24GB the application NEVER uses a scratch disk and runs the fastest as possible.

    SSD drives are cool and can make loading applications super fast. But assuming you’re in the applications for long stretches of time AND you have proper main memory for CS5 (24GB), the SSD drives provide no performance enhancements while in the app (Adobe only).

    For reference only, here is my setup:

    • 2009 MAC Pro EFI upgraded to look like a 2010 Mac Pro
    • 3.33 GHz six-core Xeon
    • 24GB DRR3 1333 Main Memory (OWC) three sticks
    • 240GB SSD (OWC) for MACINTOSH HD Main Drive
    • 240GB SSD (OWC) for Basic Scratch Drive and some near-term storage
    • 2TB STA Drive for Home Directory
    • 2TB STA Drive for Miscellaneous Stuff
    • 12TB (LaCie) USB External RAID 5 Disk Array for near-term client Photo Storage
    • Using an old laptop and 12TB (LaCie) USB RAID 5 Disk Array at my son’s home about 10 miles from my studio. I use GoToMyPC to transfer and store long-term client photos at his home as a disaster recovery model.

    After much experimentation this setup is best for ME. May not be exactly what you need. But for me, until (or if) Apple announces a new Mac Pro, there is nothing I can do with a MAC PRO platform that would increase performance for what I do with Adobe CS5. Using a PC I could squeeze a bit more but not noticeable from the Mac.
  10. slickrck macrumors newbie

    Jan 9, 2012
    Hey highdefw,

    You and I share the same rig. When you say you'd like to upgrade to the hex, which chip did you have in mind?

  11. radug macrumors member

    Aug 12, 2010
    2009 Octo 2.26 + SSD + RAID 0


    i have the 2009 octo 2.26 as well and was considering upgrading the machine with an OWC SSD + RAID 0, so i have a few questions :

    - how did you go about the RAID-0 config and how is the performance ?
    - is the RAID 0 accessible if you boot in Windows (bootcamp) ?
    - would you recommend having bootcamp on the same SSD drive as Mac OS X or do you recommend a separate one for it ? (bootcamp is an unavoidable & necessary evil for me)
    - are you having any problems with the WD Caviar Greens ? The spindown after 10 minutes of the computer being idle is causing problems for me.

    ... working in architecture & VFX btw :)

  12. highdefw macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2009

    Sorry for the very delayed response.

    To answer your questions:

    -RAID 0 is done through the disk utility soft raid included with the OS. It was very simple and set up like any other soft raid. The performance is well worth the config. For example, transferring files to my SSD run about 200+ MB/s. I work with a lot of DPX and HDR based files, so fast read and write is a necessity.

    The drives I'm running are Black Caviar 1TB 7200rpm 32MB cache drives (WD1001FALS). It's a shame, I bought these November of 2010 on black friday for $59 a piece :eek:

    -The RAID unfortunately does not run in parallel with boot camp. Before booting into bootcamp, I must remove both RAID drives. Not convenient, but to get windows running, while keeping that RAID happy in OSX isn't a big deal to me.

    -I don't see why you couldn't run it on the same SSD, but I run mine on the separate 2TB drive. If you use it frequently, I would even go as far as dedicating a separate ssd instead of partitioning your current one.

    -Honestly, not a single problem with the caviar drives, at least not in my current config. They get the job done with no annoyance. I guess since I'm stressing the RAID and ssd more, they got it easy.

    Not too sure why they're giving you issues. I even have the "put disk to sleep" option on in the energy savings preference. Though, putting the entire system to sleep seems to be effected. I don't think it's necessarily the drives, but I head it could be because of my RAID config, the optical drive (???), or the fact that I'm sharing it on a network, so it comes on from time to time. Regardless, it's a workstation, these things are meant to run for LOOOOOOONG periods of time.



    Well, if you upgrade the firmware to the 2010 model, that will enable you to run the hex processors meant for that hardware.

    Basically you could use the Westmere 2.66 Hex X5650 and the 2.93 Hex X5670. There are others with higher clock speeds as well.
  13. radug macrumors member

    Aug 12, 2010
    WD Caviars

    Thanks for the details highdefw,

    this is a deal breaker for me, as i would need access to the RAID from both OSX + Win. I assume it works with a PCI RAID card though ?

    Sorry for the confusion, I was referring specifically to the WD Caviar Green drives. These spin down after 10 minutes of idling and take about 5 seconds to spin back up when you do eventually access them. This always gives me a beachball-of-death and crashed the system quite a few times. It also takes 10 minutes for the drive to mount again after crash+restart.
  14. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    I use my 2TB Green WD20EARS for storage only. It is super quiet and has 120MB/s transfer speeds but is very slow to start up and has 15ms+ response time. Use a Caviar Black or similar 7200RPM HD for your Home account (Samsung F3, Seagate 3TB). The greens are designed to spin down more frequently to save power. Not too good sicne you need to access your Home account all the time that you are in it:)
  15. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Not sure what you're budget is, but for my work…

    Octo 2.66GHz
    24GB RAM
    480GB SSD for boot, scratch, etc.
    900GB 10K HDD RAID 5 volume for saving files, etc.
    1.5TB RAID 1 external drive for backing up internal disks
    Drobo S (currently at around 10TB capacity) for archival data, among other stuff.

    For the most important stuff I will burn to 50GB Bluray media and store that away.
  16. highdefw macrumors 6502

    Apr 19, 2009
    Yes, Hardware based RAIDS would fit that purpose. Don't go with Apple's hardware RAID though, I hear it's terrible. Definitely do a search on the forum for more info, especially with nanofrog's responses.

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