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Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?

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Lance Gambis
Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 3, 2011 at 1:56:46 pm

Hi,
I'm upgrading from my old 2004 G5 to a Mac Pro. I saw this ad on Craigslist and wanted your advice on whether it was a good deal. The machine has Applecare until 9/2011 but I am concerned that it is a 2008 Mac Pro model. Here are the specs from the Craigslist ad. Thanks!:
************************************
Beautiful Machine with very little scratches and wear and tear on the machine. Has apple care till September 14th, 2011.

2*2.8Ghz 8 Core Intel Xeon Quad cores
10GB ram with 2 more free slots to expand more
8800GT 512MB dual Dvi graphics card
1TB Hard drive + 500GB Hard drive
Apple Care
Brand new in Plastic Apple Slim Keyboard and Mouse
Brand new install of snow leopard with full final cut studio and final cut pro 7. ADobe CS5 with after effects, photoshop, bridge and many more. Office 2011
*********************************************


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 3, 2011 at 2:51:40 pm

The Nvidia card is the weak link, and in my opinion a deal breaker -- Color works much better with ATI cards

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles
http://www.drwfilms.com

POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™


A forum host of Creative COW's Business & Marketing and Apple Final Cut Pro forums. Formerly host of the Apple Final Cut Basics, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.


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Lance Gambis
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 3, 2011 at 2:53:15 pm

Thanks David. A friend of mine said it might be worth it if I can get the system for $2000. On the hand, he thinks I should seriously consider the new iMacs that came out today.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 3, 2011 at 8:54:57 pm

[Lance Gambis] "...he thinks I should seriously consider the new iMacs that came out today."

I guess that all depends on how you intend to use this machine. That's the real question. If you regularly work in a 3D application, for example, it probably won't have the horsepower you'd like. I understand the new FCP will be a 64-bit application, able to use a boatload of memory, so that new iMac might look kinda weak on that score, too.

I like how they glossed over the components in that Adobe CS5 Package: Premiere Pro can indeed make good use of an Nvidia card... but it's got to be one of the Quadro series.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Dennis Radeke
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 4, 2011 at 6:18:51 am

[Dave LaRonde] "Premiere Pro can indeed make good use of an Nvidia card... but it's got to be one of the Quadro series."

Not entirely true as we do support some older GeForce cards, but clearly Quadro cards are the way to go.

As a reminder, the GPU component is not necessary to run CS5 to fantastic advantage. A lot of people, especially Mac people think you can only get great performance out of CS5 if you install an nvidia card. That is patently not true, though the GPU is a VERY nice thing to have! ;-)

I wrote a blog article on it that you might find useful.
http://blogs.adobe.com/genesisproject/2011/03/premiere-pro-on-a-mac-%E2%80%...


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Rahul Duggal
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 4, 2011 at 3:12:55 am

With a 21.5' iMac you can install 8GB RAM tops, with a 27' iMac you can install upto 16GB of RAM (you shall be bundled 8Gb of RAM by default unless you decide customize your purchase). Also remember you can not upgrade the GPU easily in the future. (Though the 6970M 2Gb is a reasonably beefy card)

The good thing about the 27' iMac is the inclusion of 2 Thunderbolt ports which make it easy to have external scratch discs via RAID or even a capture device like a Blackmagic UltraStudio 3D.


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Lance Gambis
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 4, 2011 at 12:20:44 pm

Thanks Rahul--I'm pretty sold on the 27'' inch iMac which is plenty for my needs. If I ever need to upgrade, that means I'm doing well enough to be able to get a thunderbolt-enabled Mac Pro whenever they come out...


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Blayne Gorum
Re: Buying a used Mac: Is this a good deal?
on May 4, 2011 at 5:05:07 pm

Upgrading the GPU might be possible in the future on this machine. A breakdown of the machine reported on AppleInsider shows that it actually uses a card to mount the GPU. Now, as to whether there will actually be cards made as a replacement in the future is an open question.



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