Questions about 2.93 Quad or 3.2 ghz Octo

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Coolpowers, Oct 5, 2009.

  1. Coolpowers macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #1
    Greetings all,

    I had a few questions concerning my next Mac Pro:

    I had an Octo Mac Pro, 2.26 ghz, 16 gb ram..etc it was a perfect machine, but due to moving to an other country and when i noticed that i was mostly using single thread applications, i sold it for 2800 euros.

    For my new Mac Pro, I was confused between 3.2 GHz refurbished, or a new 2.93 with my student discount.

    My uses for this computer will be mostly Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, some gaming (not much) , internet surfing, video watching , I will be doing some 3D work and render..this will be my only computer so most of the times on it i will have many programs open at the same time..that is why i need a lot of ram (in my previous Mac Pro, most o fthe time i was using between 6-10 GB Ram) with my wacom I will be sketching on High resolution documents.

    The Refurbished 3.2 GHZ is 2999 euro the base model, and the Quad 2.93 is 2529 euro with the student discount. I read the other threads about this questions but I couldnt find the answers for my questions, I searched on google and still havent found the answers, that is why I'm asking it here.

    So If I understand right, in Quad 2.93 i will have 4 real cores and with Hyper Threading i will have 4 virtual cores, and apparently Hyper Threading isnt working as it should be for now? and in 3.2 ghz i will have 2 cpu with 4 real cores which will give me 8 cores..

    In this case, will the 3.2 Ghz work faster in 3D renders? or in time , octo 2.93 would catch it when the 3d programs can take advvantage of hyper threading (I will be using Rhino and Alias, and I know that I have to use them on Windows with bootcamp, I dont want to buy a windows computer)

    When I sketch on high resolutions documents in photoshop, I guess that my needs would be mostly on CPU and Video Card, in this case, with the same video cards, 2008 3.2 octo or quad 2.93 ghz nehalem would be faster?

    I'm thinking of putting 16 GB ram, so in 2.93's case it will be 4 x 4GB and it will work in DDR2 , son in both of them it would be the same speed? because on Nehalem Rams it says 1066 Mhz and on the 2008 Mac Pro's ram it says 800 Mhz, is that a big speed difference? would it be felt in everyday use? or when I use all the 4 slots in 2009 Mac Pro , as it works as DDR2 the speed decreases to 800 Mhz as well?

    I used to have 2 GT120 for my two Samsung Syncmaster T240 screens, but in the new one, I want to buy an Ati 4870 or a GeForce 285 GTX, one of them is 512 Mb and the other one is 1 GB as you know. I read that Ati is better on professionnal applications, but the additionnal 512 mb of Geforce wouldnt make Geforce more successfull ? and also it has Open CL support, it will make much difference? Afterall it is the silence of the card which make me want to have it, but I have two questions about it.
    If i buy it, i know that it can work with GT120 since it doesnt need power connection..etc, but does it work with GeForce 8800 GTS that comes with the Refurbished 3.2 Ghz Mac Pro too? and I know how to install, ram, simple video cards, ram..etc but i have never installed a big card like Geforce 285 GTX, connecting the power cables of them is easy? is there a manual of it with the card? It uses the power connection of the second Superdrive? so if I put this card I wont be able to install second superdrive?

    The Refurbished 3.2 doesnt come with Wifi card .. would a usb wifi be as performant as an internal wifi card? because I'm scared to break something if I install the one from FastMac

    do you know what is the best place to buy RAM in italy? I will be living in Torino

    the internal components of those two Mac Pros are the same? I mean the video card..etc I mean, when the nex GTX285 came, they said that it wont support the first MacPros I guess , can this happen in the 2008 Mac Pro? or any video card that will work in 2009 Mac Pro will work on 2008 Mac Pro?
    Rams are different, the mainboard is different, the CPUS are different, those are what I know.

    Thank you very much in advance, I hope that I was clear enough in my questions :)
     
  2. sneezymarble macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    #2
    Yes.

    I'm comfortable stating that no amount of hyper threading optimization will make a 4-core 2.93GHz Nehalem (i7) CPU perform identically or better than a an 8-core Core2 Xeon setup at 3.2GHz in 3D rendering. At least in this case, true cores are probably always going to trump virtual cores.

    Having said that, an overclocked i7 setup could come pretty close to Core2 Xeon 8-core setups. So, one suggestions would be to build an i7 Hackintosh, overclock the hell out of it, and you might end up with a system that costs less than the 8-core 3.2GHz Mac Pro but performs similarly with only 4 cores.

    In that particular case the 2.93GHz Nehalem would be faster. However, that's not to say that in that particular case 4 extra cores would not be useful. You might find yourself in a situation where a single application (possibly Photoshop, but unlikely) is using 4 cores. Certainly, the i7 based CPU at 2.93GHz will probably give you better performance than 4 cores of a 3.2GHz Core2 based Xeon. However, if Photoshop is maxing out 4 cores and you don't have any more cores to spare, then you don't have any additional headroom for much of anything else.

    So, because the 3.2GHz Core2 based Xeon won't use more than 4 cores in Photoshop, your Photoshop performance won't be as good as with 4 cores of a ~3GHz i7 based Xeon. However, with the 3.2GHz Core2 based Xeon you'll have 4 additional cores of headroom to do all sorts of things, including CPU intensive tasks like 3D renders.

    The difference between 1066MHz and 800MHz does translate to a noticeable difference in some applications. Is it worth worrying about? I don't think so. Also, if it bothers you, then just use a DDR3 compatible RAM configuration in the Nehalem setup. Sure, you might have to settle for less RAM, but honestly, there aren't many situations where, say, 12GBs of RAM is going to be too little.
     
  3. Coolpowers thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #3
    First of all, Thank you very much for your reply. :)

    After reading for your reply, i am thinking of buying the refurbished 3.2 ghz I guess; tho the +300 euro price of the machine will make me update it less for now, and update it in time. I guess that it seems like the best choice for now because even tho you said that for sketching on high resolution images 2.93 would be better, do you think that there will be a big noticeable difference? I just want it to not lag

    I will be glad if other can tell me about their thoughts and experiences too,

    Thank you in advance :)
     
  4. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #4
    The additional real cores of the 3.2GHz '08 will come in handy as well, given your intended use. :)

    Real is much better than virtual cores, as that just takes one core and splits it (which currently doesn't work very well either, as the software support is lousy when it even exists). :eek: :D

    As for other areas you can improve performance, I'd recommend thinking about creating a RAID array of some sort. It requires a substantial amount of research to understand at least the primary variations (software based on the system, Fake RAID controllers (also software based, but on a card with no processor or cache), or a true hardware controller (has a processor and cache, and does all the work on it's own). Then you get into the array types, and differences between consumer and enterprise drives.

    Simply put, it will help you, as the system won't have to wait around on data to be fed from a single hard drive.

    Memory of course would need to be upgraded.

    As it happens, such upgrades are less expensive on the '08's as well. The memory (DDR2 800MHz FB-DIMM) is cheaper than the DDR3 UDIMM's needed in the '09's. It will also allow you to place an internal hardware based RAID system in without the need for an expensive adapter (an extra $165USD in the '09's to use the HDD bays).

    And another little ancilliary benefit. ;) The '08's have 6 usable SATA ports, as the optical drive is IDE. If you use a hardware RAID, you can still use these ports by adding in an SFF-8087 -4i*SATA cable (aka iPass in Apple speak). The ports attached to the HDD bays in the '09's are lost, as they're soldered directly to the logic board behind each HDD bay. That leaves one open port, as the other is used for the optical drive in the new model.
     
  5. Tutor, Oct 8, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2011
  6. Tutor, Oct 8, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2011
  7. Coolpowers thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2008
    #7
    Greetings All :)

    Thank you very much for your replies :)

    First of all I have to say that I dont want to build a hackintosh. Because I like Applecare and since I am thinking of keeping this computer for 3-4 years, I want this warranty which will make me feel better. And on the other hand, I dont need a render monster because I guess that render will be like %20 (maximum) of my usage. Mostly it will be photoshop, illustrator, indesign and my everyday apps.

    I guess that I can use the extra cores and the extra ram slots of 3.2 ghz by using it for my other everyday stuff while rendering. I guess that more or less I decided on the 3.2 ghz, what makes me confuse is to put the airport card inside it (the FastMac Model) ..I am scared to not be able to put it, or else I have no problem else on the subject I guess. Would a USB Wifi be as performant as an internal WiFi card?

    Can you suggest me a place to buy ram in Italy?

    And can you answer this too?

    " I used to have 2 GT120 for my two Samsung Syncmaster T240 screens, but in the new one, I want to buy an Ati 4870 or a GeForce 285 GTX, one of them is 512 Mb and the other one is 1 GB as you know. I read that Ati is better on professionnal applications, but the additionnal 512 mb of Geforce wouldnt make Geforce more successfull ? and also it has Open CL support, it will make much difference? Afterall it is the silence of the card which make me want to have it, but I have two questions about it.
    If i buy it, i know that it can work with GT120 since it doesnt need power connection..etc, but does it work with GeForce 8800 GTS that comes with the Refurbished 3.2 Ghz Mac Pro too? and I know how to install, ram, simple video cards, ram..etc but i have never installed a big card like Geforce 285 GTX, connecting the power cables of them is easy? is there a manual of it with the card? It uses the power connection of the second Superdrive? so if I put this card I wont be able to install second superdrive? "

    And in the meantime, I would still like to see the thoughts of others on this subject as well if it's possible

    Thank you all in advance.
     

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