So what's wrong with the Mac Pro quad 2.0ghz?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Counter, Jun 17, 2007.

  1. Counter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 4, 2005
    #1
    I don't believe I've seen anybody mention they have this machine on this forum or others. And Apple say the mac pro 'starts from £1699' (UK of course), this being the 2.66. When in actual fact there's the 2.0 at £1509. To get to this you have to effectively select the 2.66 model and then click for the 2.0 procs pulling £190 off the price.

    It's as if this model doesn't exist.

    I thought it would be way more popular with people stuck between an iMac and a Mac Pro (maybe it is, mac rumor forums are probably not an accurate slice). The Mac Pro likely being wayyy more than they need so they'd take the bottom model. The step from a comp with the graphics card soldered to the board and a Mac Pro 2.66 is like the grand canyon.

    My trigger finger is a twitchin for either the 2.0 or 2.66. Do I need the extra processor umph? Definitely not. But I do like longevity. And I do like to buy a model that seems to exist!

    Any thoughts on this? Is the 2.66 the sweet spot price wise? If Apple had the Mac Pro's listed as starting from the 2.0 model I'd be less wary. If I get the 2.0 is it going to throw up dialog boxes saying 'where's my 2.66 proc's you pulled out, I can't run ****'. ;)

    Any thoughts appreciated.
     
  2. NATO macrumors 68000

    NATO

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    #2
    I think you're reading a little too much into it, Apple have put together a 'standard' spec at £1699 which they can actively advertise, but you have the option of upgrading and downgrading certain components for price/performance reasons and one of those options is to use the less expensive 2.0GHz Xeon CPUs. There is nothing wrong with the 2.0GHz Xeon CPU, and the Mac Pro itself will be no different if you order it with these processors, except that it will be slower than the 2.66GHz model.

    Clearly the sweet spot in terms of performance per £ is the 2.66GHz model (remember the 0.66GHz increase in speed is per core), but if you're on a budget, the 2.0Ghz model is a good compromise.
     
  3. FF_productions macrumors 68030

    FF_productions

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    Location:
    Mt. Prospect, Illinois
    #3
    I would stick with a Quad 2.66 if you can.

    In a benchmark by Macworld, the Quad 2.0 ghz lost to the 24 inch iMac in some tests.

    The 2.66 is the sweet spot and gives you the best bang for your buck.
     
  4. Umbongo macrumors 601

    Umbongo

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    England
    #4
    There are a few things to consider.

    As a consumer by downgrading you lose 25% processing power, or can get an extra 33% by sticking with the 2.66GHz. The actual cost difference between the processors is £470, or $750 in the US so with Apple only giving you back £190 or $299 it really offsets price to performance set by Intel. These are also components, that while you can upgrade, are least likely to and currently remain expensive to do so. It might also offset resale close to what you save downgrading.

    From Apple's point of view, at 2Ghz it wasn't outperforming Quad G5s, nor would it outperform the 2.33Ghz C2D machines on single threaded task; doesn't really fit into the Apple mentality. This makes the 2.66GHz a good choice for the base model as it is a top performer, and would fit their $2500 price point while remaining competitive in the workstation market.
     
  5. Glass macrumors member

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    Jun 21, 2006
    #5
    I have the 2.0 mac pro with the x1900 and lots of ram etc.. and I love it! One thing people forget is.. the downgrade performance is not the same as the GHz difference (i.e. 2.66 -> 2.0 mayb be 25% difference in Hz but actual performance difference would be less.. an article I read stating something like 13%)

    I also like to think this computer will run cooler.. and is definitely more than enough speed for me!

    Cheers
     
  6. spaz8 macrumors 6502

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    Mar 3, 2007
    #6
    The 2.0 is the least value for the money. 2.0 is 401$ per Ghz, 2.66 is $332.50 per ghz, 3.0 is $377.20, 8-core is $221.50 per ghz.
     
  7. Glass macrumors member

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    Jun 21, 2006
    #7
    You should redo that price comparison using benchmarks instead of GHz.
     
  8. suneohair macrumors 68020

    suneohair

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    Aug 27, 2006
    #8
    Benchmarks aside, the 2.0 is a terrible value for the money. The 2.66Ghz chip retail is about ~$715, while the 2.0 is ~$340. That is more than double the price, yet you only save $300 by downgrading. That is not a deal. You should be saving double that by downgrading. Even though it is Apple you should at least be getting more than 50% of the value from the chips.

    IMO buying the 2.0 model is foolish and you are robbing yourself. That is why no one talks about it. And soon, it will be phased out anyhow.
     
  9. WizardHunt macrumors 68000

    WizardHunt

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    May 11, 2007
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    #9
    But would upgrading to a Dual Quad 3.0 be a good investment? Is it worth the extra money at this time? Difference of appx $1500.00 to $2000.00 more I guess. I don't like to wait for things like rendering a movie. I think the 3.0 dual quad could help alot in this case. What do you think?
     
  10. pknz macrumors 68020

    pknz

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    NZ
    #10
    I've got the 2.0Ghz Mac Pro, isn't anything wrong with it.

    Had an iMac G5 before which died and so we paid the difference to Apple and got a Mac Pro.

    Didn't need the extra performance from a 2.66 and therefore couldn't justify paying $NZ600.
     
  11. FF_productions macrumors 68030

    FF_productions

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    #11
    The 3 ghz doesn't have a lot of bang for your buck, like I said, the 2.66 ghz is the sweet spot.

    You could go ahead and get the 3 ghz, it is marginally faster then the 2.66 but the price to pay doesn't justify it.

    What's the value of your time?
     
  12. WizardHunt macrumors 68000

    WizardHunt

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    #12
    Well that is great information indeed, That will save me more money that I can add to the Ram. So in this case would you say it is better to go 2.66 ghz dual core and add more Ram a good choice to make it perform better? or how would you configure it?
     
  13. jamesi macrumors 6502a

    jamesi

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    Sep 13, 2005
    Location:
    Davis CA
    #13
    ive been eyeing the quad 2.0 mac pro myself lately. sometimes it seems like everyone on the forum works for apple, b/c no one ever recommends the 2.0. coming from a 2 year old pb, 4 cores seems impressive no matter what. i decided to just build a computer instead, but i dont think the 2.0 mac pro should be overlooked. its still very capable and its not like the old G5 powermacs, you can actually upgrade the cpus now that they are intel. the plan was to get a 2.0 and upgrade later, but building a pc just makes more sense economically. plus its way more fun
     
  14. FF_productions macrumors 68030

    FF_productions

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    #14
    I went with a solid base system, which was the 2.66 ghz model and upgraded ram, hard drives, things like that.

    I figured, in about 3 years when applecare runs out I can upgrade the processor to an octo-core.
     
  15. samh004 macrumors 68020

    samh004

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    Mar 1, 2004
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    Australia
    #15
    Yes. Nobody has yet mentioned that fact. When the time comes in about 3 years or so, you can upgrade the processor probably pretty cheaply to something with double or quadruple the cores.

    So while the 2.0 is a little slower now, a simple upgrade a few years down the track could turn it into a beast. Same with the 2.66, so you shouldn't even be looking at the 3.0 (not that you were, but just to completely remove it from the equation).
     
  16. urbanskywalker macrumors 6502

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    Apr 30, 2007
    #16
    Unfortunately there are always trade offs between cost and power when buying a computer, especially for those of us on a budget. I have also checked out the 2.0 ghz version, for that reasons also.
     
  17. tribe3 macrumors 6502

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    Vienna, VA - USA
    #17
    I think he was referring to the Dual Quad 3.0 (8 cores) which is indeed much faster than the 2.66 and 3.0 dual core x 2 with tasks such as rendering video.

    I do agree that the Quad-Core 3.0 is not much faster than the 2.66 and it's probably not worth the extra $800. I've had the 2.66 and now a 3Ghz and to see the difference you have to use a stop watch. It would possibly pay off doing very long and intensive processor work, but with CS3 and Aperture which I mainly use the 2.66 is better bang for the $$ than all the others, including the 8-Core.
     
  18. WizardHunt macrumors 68000

    WizardHunt

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    #18
    So for you to answer that question which would you go for:
    1.) two 3.0 Quad core (8 cores) version loaded the way I want it ($5800)
    2.) two 2.66 dual core (4 core) version loaded the same way ($4300)

    if you were doing video rendering. Is it worth the extra $1500 to go 8 core now?
     
  19. gauchogolfer macrumors 603

    gauchogolfer

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    American Riviera
    #19
    If I was doing it for a business and my time was worth enough to get extra work in to pay the difference, yes. Otherwise, I'd just take a slightly longer coffee break while it's rendering. :)

    For me, as a hobbyist, option #2 makes much more sense.
     
  20. tribe3 macrumors 6502

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    #20
    For my type of work I would stay with 4 cores. PS CS3 and Aperture. http://www.barefeats.com/octopro1.html shows no gains with my programs on an 8 core machine.

    Take a look at those benchmarks and see what might be better for you.

    I love my 3GHz 4 cores but I would be as happy with a 2.66. I don't know in numbers how much faster the 3 is compared to the 2.66 but my butt dyno says it ain't worth $800. That money will be better spent in X1900XT and RAM.
     
  21. WizardHunt macrumors 68000

    WizardHunt

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    #21
    Thanks for the link. Your comments are very helpful.
     
  22. Counter thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 4, 2005
    #22
    Thanks for all the replies people.

    The thing with a 'sweet spot' in a range is...it has nothing to do with the individual users budget or needs. It shows the best bang for the dollar, very good to know of course, but for me personally I'm thinking getting the 2.0ghz will be a true £190 saving at an absolutely negligible performance 'loss' (for me).

    My work is web development, so CS3 web suite is the main software, and with it being web work all images I deal with are for screen only...not huge print res files. Even though the 2ghz would rip through these also of course.

    Also, with you being able to push in new processors later, I like the idea of going to 3ghz in a couple of years. This is a real longevity strong point for the Mac Pro, can't believe Apple chose the slot in processors (maybe they didn't have a choice? don't have the knowledge).

    When I get the machine I will also want to get into some video editing but this will be purely a hobby thing. I can go either way...2.0 or 2.66 but I think the 2.0 is gonna cover me more than enough. The price of the 3ghz chips will drop a lot in a couple of years and the £190 saving now can be thrown into them when I actually need them.

    I know there's nothing wrong with the Mac Pro 2ghz. ;) It just seems bizarre that Apple say the range starts from the 2.66. But Umbongo's post really wrapped that up, thanks for that. And the point about resale value. I don't ever intend to sell the machine, I can't imagine me doing anything other than keeping it forever. But very good point for people who don't do this. I also agree that you're least likely to upgrade the processors.
     
  23. suneohair macrumors 68020

    suneohair

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    Aug 27, 2006
    #23
    Honestly, I just don't think the saving are enough to go to the 2.0. If you plan to upgrade yourself your 2.0 chips will be worth didly. While you saved very little by downgrading to them. Whereas the 2.66Ghz will net you more.

    I don't think the upgradablity really makes the 2.0 any better of a value. You are ripping yourself off to be blunt. It is of course your decision, I just think it is a terrible one. Good luck though.
     
  24. tribe3 macrumors 6502

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    #24
    I think you have it right. In a couple of years even the 3ghz 8core processors are going to cost just a couple hundred dollars if not less, and what you get today with the 2ghz machine is quality to last a lifetime plus a power supply big enough to power a microwave oven, and all the expandability.

    Enjoy your purchase!
     
  25. benpatient macrumors 68000

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    Nov 4, 2003
    #25
    If you're on a limited budget, the money you can save going from 2.66 to 2.0 would be worth it if you spend it on more RAM that you would otherwise not get. Or an upgraded graphics card.

    If you're just wanting to save the money and use it for beer or something, then it's probably not worth it. But since the processors are swappable, and since chip prices will inevitably fall, and since OS X loves RAM so much, it's probably worth more for you to get your RAM up as close to 4 GB as possible...especially with Leopard coming.

    Alternatively, an upgraded graphics card would also be a good value for Leopard, as the stock one is less-than-stellar, and 10.5 is going to use the graphics card a lot just doing normal stuff.

    Something to consider.
     

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