New Mac Pro 2006

I am assuming this is the proper catagory for this. i have found a 2-2core2.66ghz/2gb RAM(up to 32)/250gb mac pro for 836 us dollars (including money to ship the 42 pound beast). I cannot affor a computer over 1000 dollars, so i thought this would be good. Before you say that its from the stone ages (which it is) it appears to have about the same specs as a new mac pro. Has something changed other than 64 bit (which it can run) since then that will make this obselete?:cool:

you can not afford an apple computer over 1000 dollars or you can not afford a pc computer over 1000?

Lots of my apps are mac only. It would be a waste to buy a pc, then all these softwares

$800 for a dual-core with 2gb of RAM?

Dude don’t buy a Mac, I got an 8-core CPU with 16gb of RAM and a GeForce 9500GT for less than $500.

EDIT: You could always install OSX on the computer.

It has two dual core CPU’s. Plus Hakintoshes are troublesome

what kind of apple apps do you have?

I think most PC users don’t get how much better hardware this is than you average PC, so I don’t think that’s such a bad deal actually. It’s also possible to upgrade that box quite cheap. I’m sure you could get hold of two matching CPU’s pretty cheap on Ebay, like 2x >3Ghz Core2 Quad’s and also no prob’s putting a GTX295 or alike in that box, making it a very competent workstation for 3D and editing video… :slight_smile:

Biggest issue imo is Lion being pretty crappy and Mountain Lion seems to go even further to become Apple’s own Windows Vista, hehe, so I’d stick with 10.5 on it - but that’s personal preference… :wink:

Edit: Oh, and I’m on a PC/Windows, just so you know before going all crazy accusing me of being a Mac Taliban and all that… ;D

About mountain lion being vista, I want steve back. Is their something about the cpu’s that make them obselete? I have creative suite and blender (Duh). Plus random other apps like izip and stuff that isnt on pc

The Apple hardware being better might have been a truth once upon a time, honestly now its just exactly the same hardware in a prettier box for more money.

You can build a machine much more powerful for the same money and install Linux on it, that way you will never have to buy new software again :wink: Also Blender runs a lot faster on 64bit Linux than Windows (don’t know about OSX.)

Depending on the kind of software you run on OSX, you can run a virtual hackintosh in VirtualBox and slowly transition to free alternatives. The caveat is that if you run something CPU/Memory intensive or use accelerated 3D a lot, this may not work for you. If its just office type software you’re set.

Bottomline, $836 is way, way overpriced for used hardware with those specs. I don’t care who put their logo on it.

It isn’t absolete but as you’re gonna live with this box for a while you probably wanna keep the idea of upgrading in mind, its still a 5-6 year old box… :slight_smile:

:ba:Yes i need to upgrade ram, but a new mac pro has only 3gb ram, so the 2gb ram is not strange for mac pros. I am not upgrading software because all companies do is make them bigger and slower

It’s also possible to upgrade that box quite cheap. I’m sure you could get hold of two matching CPU’s pretty cheap on Ebay, like 2x >3Ghz Core2 Quad’s and also no prob’s putting a GTX295 or alike in that box, making it a very competent workstation for 3D and editing video…

You can’t upgrade Mac Pros that easily. You need to buy matching Xeons, not Core2s and you can’t just put a normal GPU in there and expect it to work out. You need special Mac GPUs but some off-the-shelf GPUs can also be modified or made to run with custom kexts. In either case it’s a bit of a hassle. Also 2GB of Ram is a joke, you’d need to upgrade it with ECC Ram (DDR2 I believe).

Is their something about the cpu’s that make them obselete?

I don’t think there is a strong technical reason to require newer CPUs any time soon. The reason mountain lion won’t run on some older Macs is crappy graphics. Having said that, Apple isn’t exactly known to support old HW for long, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they discontinue support on these machines.

No, it’s better hardware. In a MacPro you’ll at least 10% more power of the same hardware as a general PC. It’s also more stabile running the same software and they extremely seldom brake. Like never. Pro workstations from Dell and HP work the same way. In some cases, you actually get what you pay for.

About GNU/Linux, for a specific GNU/Linux compatible app like Houdini or Nuke, on a pro workstation like the HP Z800 and running RHEL, yeah Linux is an option. For all around graphics work it just is not. I know this as I run all systems in a production enviroment since years.

Also, David says he runs Adobe CS, so GNU/Linux is just not an option…

I cannot guarantee it, but I’m sure you’re wrong. The CPU’s are not Mac-versions. The graphics cards are, but not the CPU’s. And not all MacPro’s ran Xeon’s, there we’re those running Core2’s back in the day - and that MB should take Core2 Quads. I think. I’m prettu sure. Though I can be wrong. ;D

I found graphics cards for it, plus all apple mac pros have very little RAM. But about the graphics card, its pretty crappy.

Moved from “General Forums > Blender and CG Discussions” to “Support > Technical Support”

I think the GTX285 is the fastest you can get into that box - but the 285 is still a fast card, especially in Adobe CS… Same as w/ the CPU’s, get one of Ebay… :slight_smile:

But be sure to get the Mac version, the PC card won’t run in a Mac Pro.

Edit: Also, when it comes to RAM, that’s ECC RAM and it’s expensive like h*ll…

WOAH that stuff is pricy. I might consider the new imac, atleast its not out of date in some places

I too am an IT professional, mostly Linux servers. I would be inclined to think the powerboost comes from software rather than hardware. After all Foxconn builds Apple motherboards, I doubt they are much different (if at all) from any other motherboard you can buy from Foxconn. Everything else seems like stock components possibly with different firmware to lock it into Apple-land.

Someone mentioned the need for ECC memory, which will be slower than most memory types, as well as very pricy.

You are perfectly correct about the software. As I said in my original post, it definitely depends on his use case.

That said, I have zero experience with Apple computers :slight_smile: I do have experience with Linux though and can recommend it very much if you can live with the software limitations. Blender and other native software runs like a dream, much faster than the exact same software compiled for Windows.

And I still think that price for a machine from 2006 is offputting, but if you can’t live without OSX then it might be ok.

As far as I can tell that is a dual 2.66ghz Xeon 5100, isn’t it? It is an okay machine, but is quite old, and can’t really compete at all with modern machines - even with the dual cpu.

Also, RAM is very much an issue with this machine:

  1. it was slow even in 2006 - memory bandwidth stinks in this machine
  2. you have to use ddr2 ECC server ram, with 4gb running at $100 or much more
  3. the 2006 mac pro uses two FB-DIMM riser cards, and heat was an issue. Apple used heatsinks to circumvent this issue.

2gb is NOT A LOT, and should be upgraded. However, upgrading this could be relatively expensive.

Upgrading an old power mac’s video card is also expensive, depending. In this case a 285gtx mac card (which would already be quite expensive, even second hand for mac pros - these cards are still in demand) can be made to work with hacks, but officially only the nvidia 7300gtx, ati 1900 xtx (which is probably installed in this machine) or up to a ati 5770 can be installed (with the ridiculously high priced Quadro FX 4500 being slower than a 1900xtx for Blender).

If your machine comes with the 7300: not really suitable for 3d work at all. And getting your hands on a mac 1900xtx can be problematic (and expensive again) - none are available even on ebay (I looked today).

If the original hard drive is still the one installed, you may want to upgrade: a 2006 harddrive is probably a 5200rpm drive, and quite slow. It might also be used a lot, so calculate that into your costs.

Now, if you hadn’t guessed from the musings above, in a nutshell: not really worth your trouble and money. There were issues with this machine even in 2006, and specifically the 2gb memory is a problem.

If this machine is equipped with a 7300gtx, stay away at all costs.

And forget about a cost-effective upgrade - even if you wanted, it would be problematic.

All in all, you would be better off buying a new Mac Mini with 4gb and the Radeon 6630M - faster, faster graphics, and rather more portable :wink: There, I said it. They even offer a core i7 within your budget, and performance would be better than a mac book pro.
With thunderbolt also quite expandable.

I wouldn’t touch that mac pro 2006 even with gloves on. It was great in its heyday what with being the first machine sporting the current look (the case is great!), but it is too hard, old, and expensive to update/upgrade properly.

References:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/2059/1
http://www.anandtech.com/show/2064