What upgrades can be done for a Mac Pro 1,1?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by alexgaribay, Aug 28, 2014.

  1. alexgaribay macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2013
    There's a Mac Pro 1,1 on craigslist in my area going for $300. What kind of upgrades can be done to beef it up to something more modern? Would it be even worth it to do any buy and and upgrade it?
  2. bax2003 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2011
    - More FB-DIMM 667 MHz ECC RAM, standard 1GB is not enough for anything these days
    - Flash it to 2.1 firmware and upgrade Dual Core Xeon CPUs to Quad Core ones
    - Add SSD as boot drive
    - Upgrade Graphics card.
  3. Wardenski macrumors 6502

    Jan 22, 2012
    Personally, I wouldn't bother with such an old machine unless you are a tinkerist.
  4. JoSch macrumors regular

    Feb 22, 2013
    Personally, I have one such old machine. This old machine just works great, even with FCPX and newer games like Titanfall or Battlefield 4 (with an HD5770). So it still has enough life ;-)
    BTW, you don't need to be much of an tinkerer to still use this machine.

    For faster USB, you can install one of the supported USB3 cards. A very long thread can be found in this forum.
  5. Macsonic macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2009
    Maybe a better option is to go for a 2008 3.1 Mac Pro for a little more money. You can add a PCIe SSD to give you faster speed, most of the latest GPUs can work on the 2008 like the Nvidia 680gtx, Radeon 7950, Radeon 5770 or 5870. You can also add USB 3.0 card.
  6. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Probably comes with 2 - Dual Core 2.66ghz processors. You can swap it for 2 - dual core 3.0ghz processor or (as most do) add in 2 - quad core processors (most use the 2.66ghz or 3.0ghz) to get to 8 cores (check ebay for used).

    You can upgrade it to 32GB of RAM; however, the RAM used in the 1,1-3,1 Mac Pros is pricey (might want to check used).

    It has only PCIE 1.0, so superfast GPUs might be starved for bandwidth.

    It doesn't have USB3.0, but that could be added with a card...

    It doesn't have Thunderbolt and that can't be added...

    It only has SATAII, so you have to go PCIE to max the SSD's bandwidth.

    Remember you only have 4 PCIE slots, so if you have a GPU, a USB 3.0 card, a PCIE SATA card, you are limited to only one PCIE slot left.....

    Frankly, I have a 1,1 and I wouldn't buy another one at this point. They are 8 year old computers. At what point is there a catastrophic failure? If you were given one, sure. But to spend money seems like you are just throwing money away.

    Just my .02 worth....
  7. ssgbryan macrumors 6502a


    Jul 18, 2002
    It's the underwear answer - it depends.

    Memory Upgrade: 8Gb (2x4Gb) Ram prices have dropped tremendously - 8Gb of Ram $49.95

    CPU upgrade:
    Xeon 5355 slaeg (2.66Ghz): $35 - 60

    Xeon 5365 slaed (3.0 Ghz): $145 - 200

    SSD Upgrades:
    You can price those out yourself - keep in mind that the 1,1 logic board has 2 unused SATA II ports - I connected 2 SSDs to them and raided them (Raid 0), leaving me 4 bays for my data drives.

    Video Upgrades:
    Lots of threads here that discuss what can and can't work in a 1,1. I use an Apple 5770 and am quite pleased with the results. Re: It has only PCIE 1.0, so superfast GPUs might be starved for bandwidth someone (I think it was barefeats) has actually done some research on this and it doesn't appear to be a problem.

    Other possible upgrades:
    PCI cards are available to add SATA III & USB 3 capabilities (around $30 per card @ Amazon). Macvidcards sells a Wifi AC & bluetooth card ($128). As far as thunderbolt, it is still an expensive solution looking for a problem. Not to mention that 4 PCI slots are 4 more than are available on any other Mac.

    OSX upgrades:
    Sixty Four on Thirty Two will give you the ability to upgrade past 10.7.5. Currently it supports through 10.9.4

    There are currently folks working to get 10.10 (Yosemite) working for the 1,1. Follow along on the 2006/2007 Mac Pro (1,1/2,1) and OS X Yosemite thread.

    So what does a fully maxed out 1,1 do? Geekbench shows that a 8 Core 3.0Ghz 2,1 rates about about the same speed as a baseline 4,1 (8 core 2.26).

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