Upgrade 1st Gen Mac Pro or new 17" MBP

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Craigy, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. Craigy macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2003
    New Zealand
    Hi All,

    I have a 1st gen mac pro. Dual 2.0 with 7gb RAM and a Dual core 2 duo 15" MBP - older one with 4gb

    I do a whole mix of design and web CS4 stuff - and will be getting back into FCS and Logic shortly. Possibly some motion stuff - that would suit a desktop with a proper card and possibly some FCS Color work - though this would be a very small percentage of my work.

    The X1900 card in the Mac Pro need replacing - I was about to order one - but then wondered if I would be better putting the extra money towards a 17" mbp and selling the older 15" too...

    Would my old Mac Pro still have much of an advantage over a new 17" MPB with external drives for media / scratch etc? Much performance differences - interested to hear people's opinions.

  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Your current MacPro can handle more ram, more hard drives and better video cards why would you want a laptop that has less expandability and raw horsepower then the macpro? I think MBPs make a great choice but not for everyone.

    What's your budget? Because you'll be spending in excess of 2500 for a 17" MBP Add in increased ram, possibly larger HD's and various other stuff related to the MBP you could easily spend 3k on the machine and it still be slower then your MacPro in some things.

    If you need a portable and need the screen size of the 17" then it makes sense but if you're running demanding apps and from the sounds of your post you are, I'd look to upgrading (or replacing if your budget can handle it) your existing MacPro

    Edit: just looking at the MacPros on apple.com and you can buy a stock quad MacPro for 3200 which as nearly the same amount of ram and hard drive space you have but has 8 cores. You may want to think about that, provided you don't need the mobility that the MBP offers.
  3. Craigy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2003
    New Zealand
    Thanks for your reply.

    What you say makes sense - but at the moment I have funds to either get a new graphics card for my 1st gen or sell the 15" and the 1st gen and upgrade to a 17".

    I suppose I'm trying to understand if a new 17" is going to have better performance on 'most tasks' (probably not motion and color) - than my existing 1st gen mac pro...

    I do need to keep a portable too.
  4. Sdancott macrumors regular


    Mar 9, 2008
    Sheffield, UK
    I was in the exact same position as you around a month ago.

    I sold a 2x2.8 GHz MacPro and replaced it with a 17" MBP.

    I'm starting a postgrad course in September and really needed a portable computer, I couldn't really justify keeping both machines, it seemed a little excessive.

    I've not noticed any performance dips in day-to-day tasks. But there's an obvious difference when doing video work or encoding.

    I loved my MacPro and I’ll probably buy another in a few years to come. But right now I’m loving my 17".

    Both are beautiful machines, but I was ruled by necessity - I NEEDED portability - If your in a similar position, then don't worry at all about the 17"s general capability.
  5. geoffreak macrumors 68020


    Feb 8, 2008
    Sell your current Mac Pro and upgrade it to a octo 2.8 from the last gen. They are as powerful as the current gen with a much lower price.
  6. Craigy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2003
    New Zealand
    The old 8 core as powerful as the new quad core?

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