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Don_Con

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 3, 2019
30
10
Alexandria, VA
All,

Long time reader, relative first time poster. I've been the original owner of a MP 5,1 3.33 single Westmere since 2011. Loved this machine, no problems, and no tuntil recently have I realized what a great piece of kit this is.

Due to recent work and hobby changes, I recently upgraded my 5,1 with 2x3.46,extra ram, upgraded SSDs, new HDDs, PCIe USB card etc. As I was conducting my upgrades I realized how much I've neglected this machine, as the layer of dust on the internals was IMPRESSIVE. So after I cleaned that excessive amount of dust out, and made me think I should be more proactive with my maintenance.

With that comes my question, which parts should I purchase ahead of time to keep up with the expected component shelf life? PSU, Fans, come to mind. Also, I am on the original graphics card (Radeon 5770), should I proactively get ahead of this upgrade? I haven't needed metal support as of yet, and I am still on High Sierra.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 

Slash-2CPU

macrumors 6502
Dec 14, 2016
404
268
If your concern is long term preventative items, replace the northbridge heatsink hold down clips. If not a full spare machine, at least a spare PSU and main board, but that may not be much cheaper than a full spare machine.

When buying a spare, make sure it is a real 5,1 and not a 4,1 flashed to 5,1. If the SMC versions(you can view this in System Info) don’t match, swapping main board or CPU tray between them will cause the fans to run at 100%.

Picking up a RX580 would be a good idea. Keep the old 5770 as a spare for boot screen support. Generic RX580 will not show any video at all until it is booted into MacOS.
 

Macsonic

macrumors 68000
Sep 6, 2009
1,707
97
Hi Don_Con. On maintenance, regularly clean the cMac Pro’s interior to prevent dust to accumulate heavily. As far as I know, heavy dust may make the computer run at a higher temperature. This is optional, you may connect your Mac Pro to a UPS to protect from electricity fluctuations that may be harmful to the power supply.

Like what the other members suggested, get a second cMac Pro 5,1 as backup on parts and for troubleshooting.
 

AlexMaximus

macrumors 65816
Aug 15, 2006
1,205
557
A400M Base
All,

Long time reader, relative first time poster. I've been the original owner of a MP 5,1 3.33 single Westmere since 2011. Loved this machine, no problems, and no tuntil recently have I realized what a great piece of kit this is.

Due to recent work and hobby changes, I recently upgraded my 5,1 with 2x3.46,extra ram, upgraded SSDs, new HDDs, PCIe USB card etc. As I was conducting my upgrades I realized how much I've neglected this machine, as the layer of dust on the internals was IMPRESSIVE. So after I cleaned that excessive amount of dust out, and made me think I should be more proactive with my maintenance.

With that comes my question, which parts should I purchase ahead of time to keep up with the expected component shelf life? PSU, Fans, come to mind. Also, I am on the original graphics card (Radeon 5770), should I proactively get ahead of this upgrade? I haven't needed metal support as of yet, and I am still on High Sierra.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Since you are the original owner since 2011, you have a significant advantage in terms of statistics. If you have not moved in this period and your mac was always connected to the same power grid as today, it is very likely that you will have no problem in the future, in case you did not experience a problem in the past from a power grid point of view.
That leaves you with the risk of aging components only. However, since the 5.1 was developed with heavy involvement of Intel, you actually look at a rock-solid Intel workstation with an Apple logo. Chances are moderate to high, the components of the 5.1 have been designed for extreme longevity in mind, which means large tolerances on the electrical component level and quality above average. On top of that, during the active production years of the 4.1/5.1, the PSU was redesigned at least two times. If you have a late 2011 machine, chances are high you have a later and better PSU revision that will last longer compared to a 2009 4.1 model (ACBell & Delta, I think).
 

Engender

macrumors member
Oct 6, 2007
93
8
I think this is probably an appropriate thread to ask if anyone knows where you can purchase a dust filter set for the cMP like these:https://www.demcifilter.com/products

I actually exchanged emails with this manufacturer about producing a set for the cMP, but they wanted me to send them my case—they're based in South Africa, and I'm in the US. I cannot imagine what the shipping out cost.
 

Don_Con

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 3, 2019
30
10
Alexandria, VA
Since you are the original owner since 2011, you have a significant advantage in terms of statistics. If you have not moved in this period and your mac was always connected to the same power grid as today, it is very likely that you will have no problem in the future, in case you did not experience a problem in the past from a power grid point of view.
That leaves you with the risk of aging components only. However, since the 5.1 was developed with heavy involvement of Intel, you actually look at a rock-solid Intel workstation with an Apple logo. Chances are moderate to high, the components of the 5.1 have been designed for extreme longevity in mind, which means large tolerances on the electrical component level and quality above average. On top of that, during the active production years of the 4.1/5.1, the PSU was redesigned at least two times. If you have a late 2011 machine, chances are high you have a later and better PSU revision that will last longer compared to a 2009 4.1 model (ACBell & Delta, I think).
Overall, I think you are in great shape in terms of risk assessment. My suggestion, come back in about 7 years again and we will review your risk potential again. In the meantime, in case you are a US citizen, I recommend regular health precautions and a low carb diet. Try to avoid Soda pop, exercise regularly and get informed about the impact of bad eating habits. Avoid sugar and try to maintain a BMI value of 24 or below. Get checked out at your local doctor regularly and monitor blood sugar levels as well as homocysteine values periodically. Try to avoid antibiotics if possible and pharmaceuticals at all costs.
If you are above the age of 60 today, your mortality risk is most likely higher then the failure risk of your mac pro if you do not possess advanced knowledge of the current manipulated diet for the regular US citizen.





This MP has been around the world. But thanks for the info, super helpful x 2.
 

Don_Con

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 3, 2019
30
10
Alexandria, VA
Follow up question, promised I did some searching on this but having a hard time triangulating the data. With the recent upgrade to the 2 x 3.46 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon, wanted a sanity check on idle CPU temperature checks.

With an ambient temp of 30.2 celsius, CPU A Diode is 55 and CPU Diode is 43. From what little I can gather seems a little high?


Screenshot 2019-11-19 11.38.01.png
 

AlexMaximus

macrumors 65816
Aug 15, 2006
1,205
557
A400M Base
I think this is probably an appropriate thread to ask if anyone knows where you can purchase a dust filter set for the cMP like these:https://www.demcifilter.com/products

I actually exchanged emails with this manufacturer about producing a set for the cMP, but they wanted me to send them my case—they're based in South Africa, and I'm in the US. I cannot imagine what the shipping out cost.



this may help

 

MacProRestoreGuy

macrumors newbie
Mar 2, 2020
20
0
Follow up question, promised I did some searching on this but having a hard time triangulating the data. With the recent upgrade to the 2 x 3.46 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon, wanted a sanity check on idle CPU temperature checks.

With an ambient temp of 30.2 celsius, CPU A Diode is 55 and CPU Diode is 43. From what little I can gather seems a little high?


View attachment 878049
All,

Long time reader, relative first time poster. I've been the original owner of a MP 5,1 3.33 single Westmere since 2011. Loved this machine, no problems, and no tuntil recently have I realized what a great piece of kit this is.

Due to recent work and hobby changes, I recently upgraded my 5,1 with 2x3.46,extra ram, upgraded SSDs, new HDDs, PCIe USB card etc. As I was conducting my upgrades I realized how much I've neglected this machine, as the layer of dust on the internals was IMPRESSIVE. So after I cleaned that excessive amount of dust out, and made me think I should be more proactive with my maintenance.

With that comes my question, which parts should I purchase ahead of time to keep up with the expected component shelf life? PSU, Fans, come to mind. Also, I am on the original graphics card (Radeon 5770), should I proactively get ahead of this upgrade? I haven't needed metal support as of yet, and I am still on High Sierra.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
I recently rebuilt several of these older MP's and a couple were untouched inside. The amount of dust was incredible. On the CPU trays you may notice a greasy substance on the corners, near the CPU housings. This is from the thermal sensor pad glue. Alcohol to clean this. Like buddy said, service the northbridge heatsink. IMO, shouldn't upgrade the processors without servicing the Northbridge. When you see the thermal paste, you'll know why. When you have the MAC PRo completely disassembled, you can treat all the aluminum components with stainless steel cleaner. This is a dust repellant and it also brings back the aluminum to like new. I wouldn't worry too much about upgrading the fans. Do the servicing and see if that brings the temperatures more in synch. In the meantime, crank up BOOSTA fan to try and bring down that temp a bit.
 

Macschrauber

macrumors 68030
Dec 27, 2015
2,873
1,418
Germany
So I give my 2 cents:

De-Dust the box from time to time.

Check drives/ssd health by watching smart monitoring. DriveDX is a good helper for that.

From a hardware point check thermal compounds and the Northbridge rivets.

Backup your Firmware, check its integrity and especially if you run Windows in Uefi Mode move over to legacy / bios mode or watch the progress made by the guys using open core.
 

Mactrunk

macrumors regular
May 12, 2005
177
59
Dust is not good for your computer's longevity.
Every three months or so, I take the box outside, open it up and gently use an electric blower.
I'm always amazed by the amount of dust that flies out.
Keep it clean!
 

Sean__Wong

macrumors member
Oct 17, 2018
73
26
this may help


[automerge]1590737929[/automerge]
Dust is not good for your computer's longevity.
Every three months or so, I take the box outside, open it up and gently use an electric blower.
I'm always amazed by the amount of dust that flies out.
Keep it clean!

@Mactrunk Love to see a picture !
[automerge]1590738509[/automerge]
So I give my 2 cents:

De-Dust the box from time to time.

Check drives/ssd health by watching smart monitoring. DriveDX is a good helper for that.

From a hardware point check thermal compounds and the Northbridge rivets.

Backup your Firmware, check its integrity and especially if you run Windows in Uefi Mode move over to legacy / bios mode or watch the progress made by the guys using open core.

Thermal Paste is a MUST do either by your self or get it down to a competent Tech after CoVid-19 blows over in your area.

Follow along on this thread which helped me save my 5,1 from Northbridge induced oblivion.
I suggest reading from post 1
or skip to my picture heavy post.
 
Last edited:

zachek

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2020
38
6
Los Angeles
Not sure if this is the best thread to post this, but I wanted to let anyone interested know that it seems like Trans Intl has the Mac Pro Air Filters back in stock. I just ordered two.

When I looked previously in the last few months the page gave a 404 error so I wasn't sure if they were still making them.
 
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zachek

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2020
38
6
Los Angeles
I am wondering how much do these filters affect the airflow?

I'm not sure if it's a meaningful amount; I have seen more than a few people recommend them on this forum. If anything, just may need to boost the fan speeds a bit.
 

Engender

macrumors member
Oct 6, 2007
93
8
I'm not sure if it's a meaningful amount; I have seen more than a few people recommend them on this forum. If anything, just may need to boost the fan speeds a bit.

Do you think that it's safe to vacuum the exterior of these air filters when the Mac Pro is off? I know you're not supposed to vacuum the interior of the Mac Pro.
 

zachek

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2020
38
6
Los Angeles
Do you think that it's safe to vacuum the exterior of these air filters when the Mac Pro is off? I know you're not supposed to vacuum the interior of the Mac Pro.

Personally, I bought a DataVac Pro from Amazon (the MDV-1BA) that after a brief scare initially (had some trouble after vacuuming out a new used 5,1 I was upgrading and feared it was related to ESD) I use it on the blow setting primarily now. I also secure the fans from spinning uncontrollably by inserting a long nonconductive piece a plastic (like a straw) through them before I start blowing everything out.
 
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