Work Horse Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by zachtv123, May 10, 2014.

  1. zachtv123 macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2014
    Los Angeles
    Hey all

    I was recently given a 2006 Mac Pro 1,1 (below are specs)

    I also have a Mac Book Pro with core i7 with 8gb of ram.

    I was wondering if fixing up this Mac Pro would be a good idea.
    I am a film maker, editor, photoshoper, designer and want to turn this thing into a power house (my core i7 mbp is getting fidgety). I know there are tons of forums about that but those are close to 4 years old now and I figure there are new technologies out.

    I am open to any suggestions. I was thinking about putting in an SSD, some more ram, maybe processor and graphics card along with updating this to 10.7 (lion) or snow leopard. My budget is open to anything under $1000 but if I can get good for cheaper price that is good as well.

    I use Adobe programs such as premiere, photoshop, after effects.

    Look forward to hearing some interesting ideas..


    Mac Pro 1,1 Configs:
    2 x 2.66 GHz dual core Intel Xeon 5150 processors
    4GB 667 Mhz DDR2 FB-DIMM
    NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT
    Version OSX 10.4.11
  2. brand macrumors 601


    Oct 3, 2006
    Aside from expandability your MBP will mop the floor with that Mac Pro. To make the Mac Pro a contender you will need to upgrade the CPU, RAM, GPU, and hard drive to a SSD.
  3. OS6-OSX macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2004
    The advantages I see are the following:
    1. It was given to you=free!
    2. Using Premiere, the work can be divided between the ram (more needed), a CUDA based video card and the 1,1. (Search for Nvidia cards for the 1,1)
    If you were using FCPX or Avid the answer would be forget it!
    3. With the addition of an SSD the 1,1 may be better than most would know.
    It is not just based on the 2006 date of the computer.

    It is mostly based on you using Adobe products and the Mercury Engine!
  4. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    This might not be what you want to hear, but I have a different suggestion if your budget is 1000.

    Think about selling the 1,1, taking that 1000, and buying the lowest spec dual processor 2009. That might get you 1300-1500, and that is enough to do this.

    MP older than 2009 have some limitations, and while you can upgrade it and use it just fine, if you intend to use Adobe CSS or work with video especially, in the long run it might be a better use of money

    This machine as a base for upgrading, could get you something very powerful with a much longer useful life in terms of working with video.

    Also, you can flash this machine to be a 5,1, you can upgrade the CPUs into a decent rendering machine, and you won't get dropped by OSX any time soon then. Thus, getting drivers for the vid cards you need.

    This machine will have less bottlenecks. Better slots. And a much better future.
  5. OS6-OSX macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2004
    Free Approach!

    Borrow an Nvidia card. Even the low level 8800gt (112 CUDA cores) and plug it into the 1,1. Install all your Adobe apps and give the thing a test run.
  6. zachtv123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2014
    Los Angeles
  7. ashman70 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 20, 2010
    I wouldn't put a cent into it, as others have said, if you can sell it and get a few hundred bucks for it, you can take that money and get the cheapest 2009 you can find. The 2009's and 2010's have far more options in terms of upgrades and frankly more life left in them then anything older. You can pour money into a 1,1 but only to bring it up to a 2008 or base 2009 in terms of geek bench scores, but you are still limited by slow PCI bus, slow expensive RAM, GPU bottlenecks, so why bother?
  8. MacPoulet macrumors regular

    Dec 11, 2012
    I did pretty much what you're considering. I bought a 1,1 last year and upgraded the CPU to dual quad-core 2.66ghz, 16gb of ram, nvidia Gtx 560 ti video card and an intel 330 SSD.

    The SSD was meant for a Mac mini, but that model didn't play nice so that was lying around. The ram was $45 used on eBay, the video card about $130 and I think I got the CPUs for $80. The prices have probably come down since I did the upgrades.

    I used a WD 2tb black drive for my media (editing 1080p footage from Panasonic G2s and transcoding to prores 422 HQ) and am cutting my series in premier cc. Had to use Final Cut Pro 6 for the transcode though (prelude was giving me a hard time and red giant's software doesn't work with avchd).

    So far, I'm pretty happy with the system. It's fast enough for my needs (though I'm on a loose timeline so I can wait for renders) and the only real problems are bigs in premiere cc regarding synchronizing audio.

    The mercury playback engine is software only because of the 32bit efi, but someone in another thread confirmed it'll work if you update to mavericks with tiamo's boot loader.

    So your upgrades shouldn't cost you too much. Ram, vid card, SSD and CPU. SSD you'd want even with a 2009. And factor in any media drives.
  9. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    Yes, those are upgrades you'd do to any mac. And, per upgrade, they are not that expensive.

    But its still dead money, given the expected lifespan of that machine in terms of staying current with OSX, and built-in bottlenecks.

    If you are, as you say, a filmmaker/editor etc, I would not sink money into this machine that will make it a nice machine at the moment, but without a long-term future.

    Whereas, going to a 2009 will allow you to get a machine that you can flash/upgrade to be up to a standard just behind the new trashcans. That is a much longer term future. THEN you do the ram, sad, etc etc. and the money spent on that stuff is averaged out over the next 5 years, not the next 18 months.
  10. NOTNlCE macrumors 6502a


    Oct 11, 2013
    DMV Area
    In your situation, I would do what all these fine people have recommended and sell the thing. I am a huge advocator of upgrading, but like brand said, your MBP is going to run circles around that thing even at maximum upgraded potential. Try to get $300 if you can and put it towards a 4,1 or 5,1 as others have recommended. Believe me, I've done the upgrades to a 1,1 and unless you really need another machine lying around (mine became an audio workstation for the music store I work for), I believe it's probably best to sell it in your situation.

    Good luck,
  11. goMac macrumors 603

    Apr 15, 2004
    You'd be better off putting the money into your Macbook Pro.

    As other's have mentioned, your Macbook Pro is far faster and more capable already.

    It's really difficult to turn a 1,1 into anything faster than an i7 these days. Your Macbook Pro will be much more suited as a powerhouse.
  12. TacticalDesire macrumors 68020


    Mar 19, 2012
    If you have the money to spend max out the machine, put it at a desk and use the MBP for mobile operations. Or sell it and put the money towards another machine.

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