Would that CPU be the Intel Xeon X5680?
If so, I would suggest to get a 120 GB Corsair Neutron GTX or 128 GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD as the boot disk C: and use the existing SSD on the second SATA 6G port for media cache and previews. Use the three conventional disks for projects, media and exports respectively.
I would also suggest you get a nVidia GTX 650 Ti Boost video card to replace the HD 5870. With these slight alterations, your system would be a lot faster and you don't need to invest in an outdated Mac Pro. Next step would be to increase memory to 32 GB.
PS. I understood the current specs as being your current PC, not the possible Mac Pro replacement you may want to buy. I would not advise a Mac Pro if your current system is as you described above. Far too expensive and likely a rather heavy performance loss, depending on the Mac Pro configuration.
The CPU is a 6-core Intel Xeon W3680 3.33GHz 12MB 1333MHz (3.6GHz Max Turbo Boost)
If I get another SSD as suggested, am I right in thinking I will have to delete one of the HDDs as the Mac Pro only has 4 Bays to mount the drives?
Thanks for the advice on the graphics card! I will downgrade my order to the base Radeon card and that will pay for the nVidia card. Any idea if it is a simple process to change out the card with Mac OS?
The memory upgrade may stretch my budget a little too far. Will Premiere Pro have trouble with 16 GB and 6 Cores? I think I read somewhere a reccomendation of 4 GB per core.
The specs I listed are for the new machine I am about to purchase. Sorry for the confusion.
On a PC I would suggest getting a drive cage for the SSD's to fit in a single 5.25" bay, to increase room for storage devices. On the Mac I simply don't know if that is feasible. Another thing I don't know is whether the nVidia GTX 650 Ti Boost card can work at all. AFAIK there may be some BIOS modifications on the card required to make it work. I hope someone with Mac experience can give you some assistance.
Wow Rich, don't do it!
I just ran the Apple configurator for what you are considering for $4524 (before tax and shipping):
- w3680 6-core processor - was introduced 3 years ago and is way slow compared with Intel's latest and greatest
- no Bluray burner
- only 16GB of RAM
- still need to add a video card for Adobe Premiere MPE GPU capabilities
I would urge you to consider getting a nice Macbook Pro or iMac and get a PC too to run Adobe.
To radically exceed the editing power of what you are considering here with a PC could be done for under $2500 (self build) or very reputable video system turnkey builder (i.e. ADK) for under $3500.
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I completely agree with you, but was not sure about the current specs versus planning a Mac Pro.
There are a number of limitations with Mac Pro:
- Outdated technology, old slow CPU's and slow memory.
- Limited expansion room, like the 4 drive bays show.
- Limited choices for other video cards, raid controllers, etc.
- Highly inflated prices, making them extremely expensive compared to PC's with the same components.
PC's are much more affordable, offer far more choices and options at better prices, add-ons are available on every street corner, and they offer much more flexibility in getting a system tuned to your needs. Additionally, the Windows version of PR is not limited like the Mac version in terms of number of effects and transitions.
Good judgement comes from experience, and experience, well that comes from bad judgement.
I really appreciate your advice Jim & Harm.
I have been using a Macbook Air at home for the last year and quite enjoying it, so I decided to move away from PC for this desktop (I do use PC's in my business). You have presented a pretty good argument for me to rethink....
P.S. Just wondering if that quote indicates an Ex-Mac user Harm?
I'm not Harm, but I have continually checked the Mac Pro pages on Apple's site, and Apple has not updated the hardware of its Mac Pro line at all (outside of higher-clocked models of the previous-generation Xeons) in two-and-a-half years now - all the way back to 2010 (by contrast, hardware introductions have been numerous since then). In fact, the choice of available graphics cards (GPUs) available remained two-generation-old ATi/AMD parts, which can no longer be purchased new for PCs.
I just finished listening to (audible.com) the book "Steve Jobs" a couple of weeks ago. It is a fantastic read and I highly recommend it.
Anyway, Steve Jobs preached and Tim Cook seems to be continuing running the company using the motto, "we do end-to-end solutions" (where Apple controls the hardware, firmware, software and support) and "we do not want to compete in areas where we cannot". In recent times the iPod, the iPhone, and more recently the iPad the company has been sticking to this formula and being tremendously successful in doing so.
It seems pretty apparent to me that Apple does not intend to put much support into the higher end desktop solutions into the future. And it is sad but true that the years of FCP and high-end Apple desktops being so competitive in the market will never be there again.
Hi Harm (& Jim),
After much deliberation I agree with you and Jim. I am not sure what I was thinking!
I have decided to build my own machine based around your reccomendations in previous posts. Could you please look over the system specifications and offer any suggestions or comments?
Chassis Lian Li PC-A77 $ 375.00 PSU Corsair CMPSU-850AX Professional Series Gold AX850 PSU $ 210.00 Motherboard Asus P9x79 WS Motherboard $ 469.00 CPU Intel Core i7 3930K 3.2GHz CPU $ 615.00 CPU cooler Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Universal CPU Cooler $ 40.00 RAM G.Skill Ripjaws X F3-12800CL10Q-32GBXL 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3 $ 285.00 GPU Gigabyte GV-N66TOC-2GD NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2048M $ 319.00 Disk SAMSUNG MMSASSD840P128 SAMSUNG 840 PRO SERIES 128GB SSD $ 135.00 Disk (3 of) Western Digital WD VelociRaptor 1TB 10,000RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s Hard Drives Owned Disk (2 of) Western Digital WD Black WD2002FAEX 3.5" 2TB SATA 6.0Gb/s Hard Drives $ 320.00 Burner LG BH16NS40.AYBU10B LGE OEM BH16NS40 BLK BluRay Burner, 14xBD-R Read/ Write, 16xDVD+-R Read/ Write, SATA, Silt Play, M-Disc Support [BH16NS40.AYBU10B] $ 88.00 TOTAL BUILD COST in Australian Dollars $ 2856.00
I have a few questions if you would be kind enough to help.
- Is the RAM specified compatible with the rest of my system?
- Do you think the GPU is over spec? Could you recommend an alternative if so?
- What would be the optimal disk configuration with the proposed disks? I would consider another WD Black if it would make a significant difference.
- Do you have any other suggestions where this system could be improved whilst keeping the budget around the same value?
- You need G.Skill Ripjaws Z F3 memory. The X version is for the 1155 platform.
- Disk setup
- C: Samsung SSD for OS & programs & pagefile
- D: 2 x Velociraptor in raid0 for media cache & previews
- E: 1 x Velociraptor for exports
- F: WD Caviar Black for projects
- G: WD Caviar Black for media
- The GPU is quite good, around maximum affordable on such a system. If you never plan to overclock to around 4.5+ GHz and leave memory at 32 GB, you can downgrade to a GTX 650 Ti Boost and save some $$$.
- Spending more on an extra disk does not make sense to me at this stage. You already have 7 SATA devices installed, including your LG burner inside.
If you need more power from this system, the only sensible option is a dedicated raid controller, and using a parity raid, but that has serious budgettary consequences and you cannot use your WD Blacks for a parity raid, due to the TLER problems. If you go that route, you also have to invest in HGST Ultrastars, Seagate Constellations or WD RE4 disks, the enterprise models. So that is another reason not to get an additional WD Black.
Really appreciate your help. I have found the correct RAM and have decided to save a few dollars on the GTX 650 Ti Boost (saved $126)
I can source all the products for the build from the one supplier with the two exceptions below. Is there any issue with the substituted products that you can see?
Corsair CMPSU-850AX Professional Series Gold AX850 PSU substituted with Corsair AX860 Platinum power supply (+ $30 difference)
Lian Li PC-A77 substituted with Lian Li PC-P80N (+ $49 difference)
Hi Harm, one last question with my build. Would you recommend Windows 7 Pro 64bit or Windows 8 Pro 64bit?
When I stood for that same choice, back in September, I opted for Windows 8 and I have not regretted it. There are a number of other users here who have worked with Win8 without problems, but it requires some getting used to with the Metro interface. Luckily the SP1 will come out in a few months and it will return the old and familiar Start button.
If you do go with Windows 8, you won't have the 16 GiB barrier even in the "standard" edition. The "standard" edition of Windows 8 now supports up to 128 GiB of RAM, while the "Pro" edition supports up to 512 GiB of RAM. By comparison, Windows 7 Home Premium is limited to 16 GiB while Windows 7 Pro supports up to 192 GiB. (Note that these limits are for the x86-64 versions. 32-bit versions are still limited to 4GB minus the amount used by hardware.)
I would like to add one thing to this. I would advise you to hold your purchase for a few days as the newer GTX 760 is on the verge of being launched. It'll cost $299 and it would be better as compared to GTX 660 Ti.
Here is complete specifications of GTX 760:
Would it be ok to set up four SSD drives with the configuration suggested?