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Topic # 127345 7-Aug-2013 13:30
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Hi

I have the following setup:

Apple Mac Pro 1,1 workstation with 2 Dual Core Xeon 3Ghz chips, 10gb RAM and 3 HDD's amounting to 2.25Tb, two optical drives (one the oem and one Lightscribe added by me when I got fed up with the oem rejecting almost every disk I tried to write!)

5.5Tb NAS Drobo 4 disk

27" Dell monitor

Running Mac OSX 10.7 as a 1,1 machine is 'banned' from running Mountain Lion by Apple.

Now, there is nothing wrong with the machine at all - it works absolutely fine. I use it with Apple Aperture to edit and maintain a professional photo library of 75,000 images and as my office machine for admin tasks etc. I do a very small amount of video editing but it is less than 5% of my activity.

I am aware however that (a) it is getting long in the tooth (b) Mountain Lion is about to be replaced by Mavericks (c) soon Aperture will probably be replaced by Version 4 and that is likely to require at least ML if not Mavericks in order to function correctly (d) the hardware has moved on and this system is probably slower than a newer system with a single chip with more cores and faster RAM, never mind a double chip setup.

I also run a Mac Mini and a Macbook Air, all of which are new enough to run ML but which are not as I do not want to be 'bilingual' in OS terms. We also run 2 iPhone 5's.

As I see it, my options are:

1) Buy a new Mac Pro (likely to be at least NZ$6000)

2) Buy a tricked up iMac 27" (NZ$4700)

3) Do nothing

4) Buy a top spec Macbook Air and run that as my main computer with the 27" monitor (Mac Book Pro is too heavy and I spend too much time travelling to want that much weight)

I'd be interested in the thoughts of fellow GZers as to which solution/spec you feel is most cost-effective and offers best grunt for the buck- given the prerequisite that I am not swapping from Apple's platform! ;-)





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  Reply # 873229 7-Aug-2013 14:33
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I don't know much about macs, but the mini's can have i7 processors and plenty of RAM, maybe that'd be a good option? Might not be good for video though, having no video card, just what's in the processor.




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  Reply # 873239 7-Aug-2013 14:52
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It's an old Mac alright, but not dead, the system supports two quad core CPU's. which you may be able to find on eBay for a cost effective price.

You can run 10.8 with a replacement graphics card and a bit of knowledge, why not find out how expensive it would be to upgrade the CPU, GPU and the HDD's to a SSD.

 

 

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  Reply # 873295 7-Aug-2013 15:47
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I would consider getting a newer, but not brand new Mac Pro.
Transfer some of your storage to the new box.

Perhaps the best timing might be when the new Mac Pro is out later this year.

Otherwise the following search gives some interesting results:  install 10.8 on mac pro 1 1
But it sounds like a lot of messing around to keep an old machine alive on ML, when Mavericks is almost here now.





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  Reply # 873304 7-Aug-2013 15:59
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However, wouldn't the new chips used with new architecture still be faster in say the iMac 27"?





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  Reply # 873314 7-Aug-2013 16:19
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Geektastic: However, wouldn't the new chips used with new architecture still be faster in say the iMac 27"?

Even a current gen mini will give him faster architecture, 

Any upgrades on the "old girl" will be throttled by the architecture of Standard SATA, a 1.3Ghz Bus and PCIe 1.0

You could go with a new mini as a replacement for 3-4 years,  and then upgrade again,  or wait for the new "trashcan" mac pro, but this will no doubt be expensive,  but would probably give you same lifespan as you got out of your existing kit
(although it really should be called a super mac mini as it doesn't appear to have any drive bays, or spare expansion slots on board, - all now via TB)

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  Reply # 873342 7-Aug-2013 17:13
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Maybe wait until they refresh the MBPs, rumour I saw was that they will be getting the new SSDs like the Macbook Air, which might make a reasonable difference to how you manage your workflow.

Increased disk IO might be useful when working with photos if you copy a Aperture library to the local disk while working on it?

The MBPs also have "retina" displays which might be useful?

Jon



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  Reply # 873404 7-Aug-2013 18:51
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jonherries: Maybe wait until they refresh the MBPs, rumour I saw was that they will be getting the new SSDs like the Macbook Air, which might make a reasonable difference to how you manage your workflow.

Increased disk IO might be useful when working with photos if you copy a Aperture library to the local disk while working on it?

The MBPs also have "retina" displays which might be useful?

Jon


My only concern with them is the weight when travelling. I suppose SSD's would cut it a bit though.





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  Reply # 873431 7-Aug-2013 19:40
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If you put in an SSD, new CPU that I linked, and GPU into the machine, it will cost far less and do a great job with lightroom for the next several years, you will also only spend around $1000-1500.

Lightroom isn't that intensive in the run of things, what seems to matter most with a 75,000 image library is fast access to those images. Get SSD's for your thumbnail cache and boot disk, latency on a SSD isn't an issue even with Sata 1.

Those mobile i7 CPU's are far slower than their desktop counterparts, use the money you saved and more on a new desktop machine in another 3 years or so.

This option is if you want to save some money and still end up with a noticeably faster machine.

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  Reply # 873616 8-Aug-2013 03:37
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Be aware that the MacBook Pro will see an update in chipset from Intel in the fall, this should give a slight performance boost and a good boost in battery life.






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  Reply # 873656 8-Aug-2013 08:17
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The MBP needs a significant increase in storage as well; 750gb would be a bare minimum for a unit that would be my main computer and that adds an eye-watering $1100!!

The Mac Mini with the 2.8 i7 chip, 16Gb of RAM, 1Tb Fusion hooked up to the Pegasus 4Tb Thunderbolt RAID unit might be an option.

It's only about $500 less than the fully specced 27" iMac though.





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  Reply # 874267 8-Aug-2013 21:51
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Then the iMac is better value for money. You get a great 27" display and better specs as well.






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  Reply # 874430 9-Aug-2013 10:36
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jarledb: Then the iMac is better value for money. You get a great 27" display and better specs as well.


I guess; what would be handy would be a Mac Mini with the same innards as the 27" iMac! 

I do not desperately need to spend the additional cash on a new monitor - my Dell panel is fairly good and probably only a year or so old/ However the reason I bought this monitor (apart from needing the real estate for working on photos) was that the Apple monitors of the day had gone 'shiny' and for accurate image work were not acceptable.

I gather the current 27" iMac screen is a whole lot better though so perhaps that bears further investigation.





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  Reply # 874905 9-Aug-2013 23:10
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Oh, the screen is still glossy unfortunately. So if that is a big problem for you (which I can understand it could be), then you should probably stay with your 27" Dell which is a really good screen.

Maybe go with a smaller iMac and use that as your secondary screen?




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  Reply # 875574 12-Aug-2013 07:47
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I'd wait for the new Mac Pro if I was you.

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