Hi MacRumors community, I’m in the process of updating my mac kit to some brand new goodies that will hopefully see me through the next 7 years before any significant upgrades. With that in mind i’d like to tap your vault of knowledge about some recommendations as my choice to dabble in my first professional desktop is both expensive and daunting. Basically I can only really afford one machine that has to do for work and play. Work for me these days involves creating, processing and animating motion capture data/ building VR environments for research purposes (anthropology, psychology). For this I use Motionbuilder (bummer, windows only), Maya, Blender, and DAZ Studio. The thing that takes the time is lengthy model renders in DAZ, my current 2011 MBP15 takes upwards of 15-30 hours to render a short animated scene with lighting. I also do statistical (SAS) and experimental programming using both python and MATLAB (big data). DAZ loves cores but doesn’t use GFX card grunt by default, some renderers take advantage of this although I’m not sure what kind of benefit this might be. I’m not as clear on the other packages on what they take advantage of, my forum reading stumbles a bit here and I’m relatively new to the who animation/render game and this will be the first machine I will have bought that takes these things into account. Home involves the usual low energy stuff and maybe some light windows gaming (Starcraft II) so I assume this will be no problem. I have never owned a workstation computer before and have read that they excel mainly at multi-core complex stuff and either break even or are worse than your normal desktops at single core tasks. The new mac pro has plenty of options to tick, often with massive price tags so here are my umms and ahhhs. From my reading I’m thinking the 8-core holds the best all-round performance based on single clock and core count that should be perfect for my home/work scenario. At an extra £1200 over the 6c for the web average of up to 30% boost, do you guys think in the real world this is that noticeable in anything other than intense multi-thread activity? What about RAM? - I know traditionally mac installed ram has been very expensive but a quick peek online it seems to be more expensive to buy third party as the stick size means all 4 modules need to be replaced (like 16GB will be 4 sticks of 4GB whilst a 32GB kit would be 4x8GB sticks).. what is your take on this? I currently have 8GB in this MBP so of course even 16 will probably feel great. My biggest umm and aahh has been the graphics, the D500 or D700. to be honest I have no idea whether the 700 would benefit me. Graphics performance/requirements in pro applications with pro cards outside of gaming (i.e. fps metrics) confuse me. Is there anyone out there that use the above apps that can comment on whether one might be better than the other? I’d love to run a couple of good screens, maybe even a 4k if the price was right if that helps the recommendation. I read somewhere on this forum that the 1TB flash SSD has better performance than the other SSD choices, how is this so if they are all using the same PCIX interface? can anyone comment on this or is this a fallacy? I was going to go for 512GB and will have big capacity for files using external drives. Finally, I read that now on the nMP you can only bootcamp win8 but on the documentation for the latest bootacamp win7 is still listed. is it that its no longer able to be installed or its just no longer officially supported? Looking forward to your recommendations.