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Re: Upgradable GPUs

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Chris Kenny
Re: Upgradable GPUs
on Jun 11, 2013 at 1:43:07 pm

[Craig Seeman] "Yes I know the GPUs are beasts today but I wonder about the demands in late 2016 early 2017 when it's 3 years old and the base price will have been even higher than 2008 8 Core MacPro."

Upgradability, at this level, is merely a price calculation.

If the thing ends up costing, say, $4500 in the configuration you buy, you can probably get $2000 selling it two years later. Apple stuff holds its value pretty well over such time periods. Then just buy a new one. That's not necessarily going to cost much more over time than, say, spending $800 buying two new graphics cards after two years, and then holding the machine for a full four years after which its resale value will probably be well under $1000.

With the numbers above, for instance, $4500 purchase price - $2000 resale price over two years works out to $1250/year. Then do it again.

$4500 purchase price + $800 GPU upgrade two years later + $1000 resale price after four years = $1075/year.

Given that the former approach will, during those second two years, give you the benefits of a new CPU (with, probably, more cores, more memory bandwidth, etc.), probably a larger SSD, and whatever other slick things Apple has on a late 2015 or early 2016 Mac Pro, it doesn't seem obviously worse by any means. There's also the distinct possibility that even if you need to buy a $4500 configuration this year, you'll only need to buy, say, a $3500 configuration to meet your needs in two years, which could make the resell-and-replace approach cheaper outright.

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