When To Replace 3,1 2008 Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Velin, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. Velin macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2008
    Hearst Castle
    Have put SSDs and new video cards into this machine, it's fast and is pushing three displays without any problems (Apple Cinema, NEC monitor and LCD projector). It's plenty powerful for everything I do, and I don't want to upgrade.

    (It's pretty amazing, if this were a PC I would have already chucked it in the garbage, no joke, I would replace PCs such as Dell and Gateway like every two years, their build quality was generally terrible.)

    If I could use this machine for another five years I probably would. But realistically, how long can I keep using this machine without much hassle? For example, I don't want to be posting on here whether a particular video card or peripheral is going to work with the 2008 Pro. If something comes out, I want it to be plug-and-play ready. So far that's pretty much been the case, but for how long? Also, when should I expect more serious hardware breakdowns, i.e. a logic board failure?
  2. MacUser2525 macrumors 68000


    Mar 17, 2007
    Well in my few decades of playing with these things it has been my experience that if the components don't die in the first little while then they are good for many years to come. For your other part since these machines use standard bus interfaces it really is only when the hardware manufacturers decide they no longer want to support Snow Leopard or if you have Lion on it even longer that you will find it hard to upgrade your machine which I don't really see happening for another couple of years at least in the case of Snow Leopard.
  3. perpetualpoet macrumors newbie

    Sep 23, 2009
    Macs themselves last forever. I had a 12in powerbook G4 from 05 that is still kicking! (I sold it, but it's still working fine)

    The problem is that apple slowly starts gimping the old machines after 2 years of age. For example, the 1st and 2nd gen white macbooks don't have inertial scrolling. Why? They certainly can handle it, but apple won't let them do it. (although you can get firefox addons that do it)

    Or the fact that you can't get 64 bit itunes on snow leopard. No real reason why they can't release one for Snow Leopard since it's 64 bit.

    Or when they told everyone that the Mac Pro 1,1's can't use the 8800's that came out in 2008. The users got so mad that apple released one that works with the 1,1. (besides that fact that you can get flashed PC's versions of many cards on ebay that work great)

    So apple will gradually stop supporting things on your Mac Pro, even though it will be perfectly capable of handling the updates. If you're ok with that, then there won't be problem.
  4. BJonson macrumors 6502a


    Aug 26, 2010
    My 8 core 2008 2.8ghz mac pro is still chugging along with 32gb ram and a new video card. It works great. Fans NEVER speed up, runs cool, never crashes and is silent. I am only waiting for the thunderbolt Mac Pros and 16 cores before I replace. I try to replace when the new one is at least twice as fast as a rule so the new Mac Pro should make the cut. We shall see but even when I get the new one I will never get rid of the 2008. Best mac ever made in my opinion.
  5. And1ss macrumors 6502a


    Oct 20, 2009
    Replace your machine when the machine breaks down, you have expendable cash, or the new tech is lightyears ahead of your current gear.
  6. TheStrudel macrumors 65816


    Jan 5, 2008
    When you actually need to. I'm expecting to get ~6 more years out of mine.

    Why so long? Why is this machine going to last an eternity in computer years? Because software needs to get better in order to even take full advantage of all the hardware that came in this. That's only now starting to becoming true, so now you're getting software that's faster on the same hardware.

    I honestly can't see anything demanding that much more horsepower than what I'm already using, and this machine is plenty fast for what I do. Granted, it's not the fastest computer in the world, but it doesn't need to be, either.
  7. Mythlin macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2011
    Glad to hear you are all enjoying your machines still! Just received my 2008 8 Core Mac Pro, and so far, I'm really enjoying it! I love the thing. WAY faster than my iMac. Hope to have many years with it. :apple:
  8. j-banana macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2011
    for the casual MP user, a MP is both a MAC and PC (since you can run windows ) and you can both update anytime w/o any problem, so this is a good investment rather than buying just a PC although there's hackintosh's out there but still they are not easily updatable like a real mac does.
  9. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    I just got a G3 Pismo Powerbook up and running again with OS9 and 10.4 so yeah they last for quite a while. It had sat dormant for years. I think it is 12 years old now.
  10. roblin macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2007
    good question. i think i will wait until next spring, dont know if anything will be new then, but it fits better with my schedule.

    my 8x2.8 could use some more power, it have really big databases and do some heavy simulations and i hate waiting...
  11. Infrared macrumors 68000


    Mar 28, 2007
    I totally concur. Those machines are solid.
  12. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    I love my 2008. It's had ZERO issues since I bought it in March of 2009, it's still fast to me and it's still under AppleCare through March of next year. There are times when I'd like it to be faster when I'm doing CPU intensive things (like rendering), but I would have to spend thousands to get a newer Pro that's appreciably faster. I got mine as a stock 8-core 2.8 for $1899 when Apple was running the EOL + business customer discount. Couldn't ask for a better deal than that...

    There's a slight possibility that I may look more seriously into the next-gen models when they arrive, but I'm still in no particular hurry to replace my machine unless something major happens out of warranty (like a fried logic board or bad CPUs). I think I'll hold on to mine as long as possible.
  13. Velin thread starter macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2008
    Hearst Castle
    These are good responses. Waiting until machines double in power, maybe that is a good rule of thumb. Agree with what everyone said.
  14. tamvly macrumors 6502a


    Nov 11, 2007
    Here's another consideration or two ...

    It seems to me there is a sweet spot that takes into consideration what you can get for your current machine versus the speed and features of the new models. The 3,1 remains a very popular Mac Pro - very reliable and still quite powerful. I've seen them advertised up to $1,800 depending on add-ons.

    Also, look for end-of-life deals at Apple stores on the current Mac Pros when the new ones are available. This is how I got my 3,1 and I saved almost $1000 off of list.
  15. t0rr3s macrumors 6502


    Dec 23, 2010
    I'm in love with my first gen mac pro which I picked up only about a month ago. Since its purchase, I've replaced the front fan assembly (broken power connector), added 3TB of storage (Caviar Blacks), purchased 4 more GB of ram from OWC to push it to 11GB and changed the 8800GT to a mac HD Radeon 5770. Just a couple of days ago, picked up a 23" ACD to pair it with.

    Just working with it has rekindled my love for macs (not that it has dimmed). Even though it's 4 yrs old and counting, it still runs my apps (FCPX, motion 5, compressor, autocad, cs5 ps and illustrator) just fine. I even get to play my Pro Evo Soccer 2011 on bootcamp in max settings so that's a definite bonus. :)

    I do hope yours run as long as you want it.
  16. thegreatdivorce macrumors regular

    Sep 23, 2010
    Upper Left USA
    I honestly don't see replacing my 2008 octo anytime soon. For what I do (a metric s***-ton of photo editing), it's plenty fast, it's reliable, it's easy to upgrade...

    The future I see for it is possibly cannibalizing it to make a screamer of a Hackintosh. And that, not until 16-cores come out.
  17. jamesdmc macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2007
    Gonna run mine until the wheels fall off. The next step is to add more RAM and a pci eSATA card. As my storage needs increase, I'll remove the 750 GB, 1TB and 2TB drives and replace them with 3TB drives. For my needs, it should last me quite a while longer.
  18. miniConvert macrumors 68040


    Mar 4, 2006
    Kent, UK - the 'Garden of England'.
    2006 MP owner (that the 1,1?) and just throwing in my thoughts.

    Keep working the machine until it either can't keep up with you anymore (unlikely) or you actually find yourself in a situation where you want/need to update/upgrade something and you can't.

    As a previous poster has said, if something doesn't go wrong within the first year on this sort of kit experience tells me it tends to go the distance. Of our two, both the ATI cards overheated and fried within the first couple of months. Since Apple fixed that with a second revision of the card the only thing I've had to do is replace HDs. I doubt your logic board is going to spontaneously combust now :)

    I love the Mac Pro. Unfortunately the market for this sort of beast has contracted considerably, IMHO, not in the least because you can get so much crammed into an iMac these days, and the Mac Mini of all things has taken over as a low end server offering.

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