Just wanted to post a quick update on what I’ve done to my Mac Pro. To recap: I acquired a 2006 first-generation Mac Pro and am in the process of building it up. Why? Because I can. Also, I have a big video project this summer and I need something fairly powerful to cut on.
The first upgrade was a modest memory boost, from 1GB to 5GB. It’s a definite improvement, though still not enough for a proper edit suite. I’ll be adding another 8GB by the summer, at least.
Next, a little bit of brain surgery that saw me swap the antiquated 2Ghz dual-core Xeons with slightly less antiquated 2.66Ghz quad-core Xeons. What does that mean in non-geek speak? Each “core” is a processor. So having two dual-core Xeons would be like having four processors or “brains” and the quad-cores would make it eight. The speed doesn’t scale linearly, so doubling the cores won’t double the power. But for certain tasks, there is a definite improvement.
The other day, I finally installed an SSD drive. I happened to have one lying around, since my Mac Mini didn’t like it, and would hang at random times. But it works fine in the Mac Pro. It boots up in less than 25 seconds, and that’s from the moment you push the power button. Once you hear the chime, the desktop appears in a couple of seconds and you’re all set to go. It is stupid-fast.
I’m currently working on a “how-to” video on how to install an SSD, and will do one for the processor upgrade too. After that, the next upgrade will be a newer video card.
New year, new beginnings. And it was almost so when I powered up the PowerBook this morning. The lower quarter of the screen displayed visual artifacts and flickered constantly, rendering it almost unusable. It hadn’t been on since coming back from our cross-country holiday visit back east, and the time off didn’t seem to agree with it. Read More…
Write Brothers have updated Screenwriter for Mac to version 18.104.22.168. It includes the following:
– Recompiled for OS 10.8, with GateKeeper compatibility
– Improved reliability
– Fixed several circumstances that would result in a crash (namely: closing Character Name pop-up after an undo, typing words that are more than 50 characters long, sending an RTF Email)
It looks like a pretty decent update, but it still doesn’t address features that won’t work in Mac OS 10.7 (Lion) like Compare Documents, Name Bank, Thesaurus and Avid Export formats, or support for the Retina Display. They’re supposedly coming in a future automatic (hopefully not paid) update. Until they fix that, I think my Mac Mini’s gonna stay on Snow Leopard…
You can get the update here.
One of my pet peeves is our increasingly disposable culture. Perfectly good products are simply thrown away because of planned obsolescence. I hold onto things. Like the PowerBook, or my Blue and White G3, or the 486 before that (my dad’s IBM PS2 is still running). I use an iPhone 3G that was given to me. Sure it’s a little slow, but it works fine.
One of my wife’s pet peeves is the amount of junked electronics gear in the house. Read More…
I never liked Microsoft Windows. Back in the early 90s, I’d spent more time in DOS than Windows 3.1, like most people I knew. We had Macs at school, and for some odd reason, I hated them with a passion. I don’t even know why. Which is funny considering how many I currently own, coupled with iDevices, Apple TV and an Airport Extreme. Read More…
Despite the brand new Dell under my desk, I’m typing this on my PowerBook. Why? I’m still faster on a Mac. I’m trying to like Windows, I really am and I’d heard lots of great things about Windows 7, but for the life of me, I can’t get it to work as well as a nine year-old Mac. Read More…
I admit it. I own a BlackBerry PlayBook. A huge fire sale and a collection of Sears reward cards that were about to expire finally pushed me to grab a 16GB base model. Having missed out on the HP Touchpad, I wasn’t going to be denied a cheap, possibly useless tablet computer.