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Help me make the move to Mac!

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So I am looking for advice on how to move to a mac pro from a PC. Specifically how to do so on a budget. It needs to be a pro because I need at least 1 free PCI-e slot for my DSP card and I'd like the video card to be good enough to play modern games using fusion/bootcamp. It also needs to be super quiet, as its main use is in my recording studio. I'd rather not shell out $2500+ on a new one, so my thought was to look for used, but I am not sure what gen/specs I need to go looking for. I am a software developer by day, and have built many many workstations and servers over the years so I am comfortable performing any necessarily upgrades a used box will need. Also, I have an SSD and 2TB Raid 5 array I can throw in to what ever I pick up as well.



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Double check your DSP card is compatible if its an expensive one your not willing to part with.


Why not just build a hackintosh? Desktops can be built perfectly and it'll cost substantially less and depending how much you spend may be faster than a pro. Your a dev so it wouldn't be hard for you to do it right.

If your going to buy a mac pro second hand bear in mind apple only support hardware for 3-4 years after release. It may not bother you being on the latest OS but once they no longer suport it you won't get security updates.

Also mac pros are long overdue an update so if you could wait a while that would drive second hand prices down.


Personally I wouldn't buy anything before mid-2010. See what you need:


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If you want a genuine Mac, I would suggest you buy a used Mac Pro 3,1 ("Early 2008") or later. The Mac Pros were recently updated recently, but it wasn't much of an update. They're waiting for new Intel Xeon processors and there's some hold up there.


The Mac Pro 3,1 is a fully 64 bit Mac and is unlikely to fall off the OS supported list anytime soon. If Apple were to release an OS that required Thunderbolt, none of the Mac Pros currently being sold would be compatible with it either.

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