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…