Snow Leopard Vs Lion Vs Mountain Lion for 2006 2.66x4 Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by cen7779, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. cen7779 macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2012
    I did a quick look and didn't see a thread with this question, if I missed it I apologize.

    I am trying to figure out what os I should install on my system. It has 16gb of ram and I am upgrading to a ati5770. Does anyone have an opinion on which os would the best performance for this aging system and why.

    Thanks in advance
  2. ashman70 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 20, 2010
    Well you can't install Mountain Lion without a hack, however you can install Lion. I would just go with Lion, the advantages that ML brings are, in my opinion, ok, but not earth shattering. Besides, you may have issues updating ML if you install it with the boot loader hack, whereas you'll be fine with Lion.
  3. yellowbunny macrumors regular

    Jun 27, 2010
    I have Mountain Lion on mine and i'm super happy with it. Did require a hack but it was easy enough and one it's done it's done.

    Lion if your not interested in hacking.
  4. cen7779 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2012
    Ya, I knew ML would take some workarounds for the EFI, which I assume means at least a small reduction in performance relative to a system that has the right EFI. Unless someone says that even with that it runs software better than the others I am hard pressed to go with it. Plus it sounds like if you go with it you are stuck booting to a boot loader first which is a small issue but on a single os system something I try to avoid. It does have a screen share feature that I would like but I don't have the apple TV to go with it or the money to get one right now.

    I am really expecting to decide between snow leopard and lion. I was using leopard untill the hdd went out, and had used newer osx's on other people systems but didn't ever find a new feature I couldn't live without. Of course you never know how usefull a feature is until it is on your own system. I just don't want to downgrade overall performance by upgrading the os.

    Another thing I have to consider is snow leopard gives me Rosetta, if it isn't a lot slower than lion I might want to go that way so the kids games aren't a problem.
  5. gpzjock macrumors 6502a

    May 4, 2009
  6. fuzzypickle macrumors newbie

    Sep 3, 2012
    What are you using your system for?

    I've gotten used to ML (had to for PC vid card support), but I much preferred SL to Lion (I actually skipped Lion altogether on my 3,1. Installed it on my 2009 MBP that I don't use as often anymore to dry run it and I didn't particularly like it).
  7. cen7779 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2012
    The main uses for my mac pro is running science and math software like maple, matlab, labview and solidworks but I also use it to play games like civ or command and conquer. As for rosetta I don't know that it is necessary but I think some of the old games my family plays on it need it. I can always find them new games.

    I have been reading about the SL and Lion on wikipedia. It sounds like with all the iOS stuff added into Lion it may be lacking functionality. A mac pro is not an iphone after all, but then again apple usually knows there stuff.

    I think what I am wanting to know is which version of the os will make my calculation and games run fastest. I guess I may have to try and benchmark both.
  8. fuzzypickle macrumors newbie

    Sep 3, 2012
    You could, but I don't think you'd see a whole lot of difference either way. You could do some googling regarding your specific apps, but I doubt you'll find any noticeable improvements from one to the other.

    It seems like Lion will process some things slightly faster than SL and others slightly slower, but I'd guess you'd probably net pretty even when all's said and done. It may also depend on the support level for the apps you're running - I'm not familiar with any of them so I'm not sure if they'd be coded to even take advantage of any possible speed increases Lion might offer.

    My personal 2 cents, FWIW, I'd go with Snow Leopard. You're certainly not going to see a night-and-day performance gain/loss from one to the other, and for me at least, SL just felt like a better OS.
  9. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    Same here - i vote for SnowLeopard, as Mountain Lion is the only incarnation of Lion worthwhile in my opinion.

    Installing ML on the 1,1 requires going hackintosh (only on a very compatible hardware) and thus a little more effort in both installing and taking care with OS updates.

    If you are keen on going iCloud or having a better integration of your iOS devices (if any), SnowLeopard will probably not suffice.

    The next problem coming up will probably be that Apple will cease to support SnowLeopard in terms of security patches in the not-too-distant future. Keep that in mind while deciding which route to go.
  10. cen7779, Oct 3, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012

    cen7779 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2012
    I don't know that these science and engineering apps are optimized for any os. I think they are based in simple number crunching. Anyway, I have been using my wife's ipad3 regularly since my hdd gave out and I can't say I would want my computer to work like this. It feels to me less like a small computer and more like a large cellphone. So I think I am just going to go with snow leopard.

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