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Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?

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Therese Kim
Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 17, 2016 at 3:12:21 am

Hello,
My old Mac Pro is restarting itself constantly (and its fan? was racing loudly the other day).

But I need to use it, because I'm finishing my film's VFX in Shake (discontinued when my mac was new).

I also have a retired Mac Pro at work I could buy.

I'm trying to determine if the mac at work is faster (than mine). If so, I'd rather buy it than repair mine.

Could anyone tell me which would be faster? I'd be very grateful!

================
Mac Pro at Work
================
10.5.8 (2009)
2.66 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
6 GB, 1066 MHz, DDR3
ATI Radeon HD 4870


===============
(My) Mac Pro
===============
10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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John Rofrano
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 17, 2016 at 12:11:59 pm

[Therese Kim] "My old Mac Pro is restarting itself constantly (and its fan? was racing loudly the other day). "
Have you ever vacuumed out all of the dust? It may be overheating due to dust collecting on the fins of the CPU cooler and just needs to be cleaned out. You should have this done by a professional if you don't feel comfortable disassembling your Mac Pro yourself, but dust will cause computers to overheat and reboot. It could also reboot due to a bad memory stick but if the fan was running loud, it sounds like it might be a cooling issue.
[Therese Kim] "I'm trying to determine if the mac at work is faster (than mine). If so, I'd rather buy it than repair mine."
No. It looks like your Mac Pro is a 2.8Ghz 8-Core (2 x 2.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon) and the one at work is only a a single 2.66Ghz 4-Core (2.66 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon) so it is NOT faster than your Mac. In fact, it's about 2/3rd the speed of your Mac which is significant! It has 1/2 the cores and they are slightly slower than yours but they are multi-threaded while yours are not. Overall it's slower.

If you check the Geekbench scores, your Mac Pro (Early 2008) Intel Xeon E5462 2800 MHz (8 cores) has a score of 10,411 while the Mac Pro (Early 2009) Intel Xeon W3520 2670 MHz (4 cores) has a Geekbench score of only 7,172. That's a pretty big difference. So the Mac at work is not faster than yours.

BTW, I bought a 2008 Mac Pro 2,8Ghz 8-Core, 16GB memory, AMD Radeon HD 5870 on eBay about 2 years ago for $740. They are even cheaper now. I also purchased my current 2010 Mac Pro 2.93Ghz 12-Core, 24GB memory, AMD Radeon HD 5870 about a year ago on eBay for $2275. So you can probably pick something up on eBay that fits your needs. When the new Mac Pro's came out, lots of companies updated their inventory so there are a lot on the market right now.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:46:10 pm

Thank you so much, John! I *really* appreciate the thorough response.

I've opened up my tower and used canned air to clean it out a few times in the past.

But my external hard drive might be dusty. It's more than 8 years old, and connected to the mac. Maybe I need to give it some canned air, too. (Do people do that?)

If that doesn't help, I'll see if I can figure out how to replace the memory.
Thanks again!

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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John Rofrano
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 24, 2016 at 4:11:55 pm
Last Edited By John Rofrano on Mar 24, 2016 at 4:12:49 pm

[Therese Kim] "I've opened up my tower and used canned air to clean it out a few times in the past. "
Canned air is good. If you have any furry pets, their dander can provide quite a nice warming blanket. One problem is that the fins on the CPU heat sink are covered by a shield that can't be removed without taking several other parts out first. I don't know how much you will get out with just canned air but it's worth a try.

These is where you want to get the dust out of:



Here is a video on how to get the CPU Heat Sink Shield off. As I said, you might want to leave this to a professional but I just wanted you to understand what it entails. This should give you adequate access to blow air between the fins and get all of the dust out (don't remove the heat sinks, just blow them with air from the side):





[Therese Kim] "But my external hard drive might be dusty. It's more than 8 years old, and connected to the mac. Maybe I need to give it some canned air, too. (Do people do that?)"
Spinning hard drives can certainly get very warm and keeping them cool will extend their life. It's not the reason your Mac is rebooting but it's certainly all part of good maintenance to keep dust away from any part that requires cooling.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 28, 2016 at 1:59:59 am

Thanks again for such helpful information, John. You've been very generous! For the time being, my mac is behaving normally, but when it does act up again, I'll give this a try (or defer to a pro).

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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John Rofrano
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 29, 2016 at 12:26:39 pm

You're welcome Therese. Good luck.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on May 10, 2016 at 1:10:01 am



I've been trying to pull the front fan out, so I can access the heat sinks (to dust them). The top-left screw holding down the fan was removed, but the fan won't come out.

I uploaded a photo, in case someone might notice anything that could be keeping the fan in?
Any ideas would be appreciated.
Thanks!

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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John Rofrano
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on May 10, 2016 at 11:34:46 am

[Therese Kim] "I've been trying to pull the front fan out, so I can access the heat sinks (to dust them). The top-left screw holding down the fan was removed, but the fan won't come out."
You are going about this the wrong way. Removing the front fan is not going to help.

You need to Google for "mac pro service manual" and download a PDF copy and read about how to do this. You need to remove the memory and loosen the memory cage and slide it towards the back to get the heat sink cover off.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on May 10, 2016 at 3:19:51 pm

Ah! Thanks again for the help, John!

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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John Rofrano
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on May 13, 2016 at 4:33:57 pm

Your welcome. Let me know if you can't find the service manual.

~jr

http://www.johnrofrano.com
http://www.vasstsoftware.com



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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on May 15, 2016 at 8:41:26 pm

Thanks again, John.

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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Sam Lee
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Mar 30, 2016 at 4:58:47 pm

Nothing lasts forever. All Mac Pros will eventually die out. I have two of the PSU died out on me last several months. Cost for a new PSU is about $300. I don't think it's a worthwhile replacement because for starter the h.264/mp4 encoding is about 10x slower than any of the newer i5 or i7 Macs. The power consumption is 300-500 W vs 90 for Mac Mini and MB Pro. Over a six month period you'll be wasting about $400-500 in power bill vs $150 for the 90W. Looking at the big picture, it's time to get a new Mac (anything w/ i series CPU) with lower power consumption and faster performance.


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Therese Kim
Re: Which (vintage) Mac Pro is faster?
on Apr 22, 2016 at 1:00:03 am

Thanks, Sam! I appreciate your feedback.

Mac Pro 10.5.8 (early 2008)
2 x 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
12 GB, 800 MHz, DDR2 FB-DIMM
ATI Radeon HD 4870


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