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  #1  
Old 12-13-2007, 08:36 PM
LGM Productions LGM Productions is offline
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Default Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

i'm looking at purchasing one of the new 8core penryns mac pros when they are released in January, because digi haven't yet got support for Leopard & pro tools i'm planning on running either XP or Vista in the iterum, Apparently XP supports up to a max of 8 processors & Vista 32.. (something like that), i am also wanting to set it up as a killer game pc so i can enjoy both the things i dig.

Specs i am looking at (subject to confirmation of penryn stuff)

*Intel Mac Pro 8-Core 45nm 3.2 Xeon
*OS: either XP / Vista / OSX10.5 (when digi get moving)
*16gig Ram (definitely not buying RAM from apple.. eek $7000 when it really costs $2000 on the market
*3 TB HD space
*768mb Geforce 8800Ultra video card
etc
etc

I've been trying to find people with similar setups (of the old 8cores), i just want to know how well do they actually run with Pro tools and are their any benchmarks anyone might know about (for current Xeon 3.0 not penryn) so i can get a rough idea

cheers
LGM
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2007, 01:03 AM
StavrosSound StavrosSound is offline
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Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

Quote:
16gig Ram (definitely not buying RAM from apple.. eek $7000 when it really costs $2000 on the market
Wow...$2000 for 16GB RAM?! That's almost murder. The new rig I'm building in a few months is in total less than that RAM

Check out Newegg...something like $80 for Crucial/Corsair/Patriot 2x1GB sticks for PC 800MHz DDR2-RAM last I checked. Prolly have to run a PC though.
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  #3  
Old 12-14-2007, 12:02 PM
3JDamon 3JDamon is offline
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Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

If you're running Windows for Protools and gaming, why get a Mac? If you really want OS X for general use, just get a Macbook in addition to a killer PC, would cost less overall. You'll end up spending thousands more just to run Opera on 8 CPU cores...
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  #4  
Old 12-14-2007, 06:08 PM
FlowDenny FlowDenny is offline
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Location: LI, NY, USA
Posts: 95
Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

LGM,
If you want to buy a MacPro to run PT in the future (when Digi supports 10.5.... some where around the same time that PT 8.0 is released!! ;-) ) then stick it out. But you're going to pay a ton of money for a machine that will probably drop in price 6-8 months after you buy it, only to wait around for other companies to catch up to Leopard. If I were you I'd wait to pull the trigger...

You are going to be wasting your $$ on 16GB of RAM. Leopard will see all 16 Gigs and utilize it. Windows XP(32Bit) will only recognize up to 3GB of ram. Unless you buy XP Pro x64, which PT will not run on anyway. So I don't really think you'll be happy with the performance you'll get after spending all of that money. Not to mention that PTLE doesn't really run very well via BootCamp. Not Digi's fault!!

I have a MacBookPro 2.2 Ghz, with a 002R and I can't have my buffer set below 512 without having a flood of DAE errors when trying to record 1 track! However running on 10.4.9 PTLE is fine and I can track at a H/W Buffer of 64 with no problems. Which is really the reason for buying the laptop... mobile tracking.
I'm still trying to troubleshoot the whole XP via bootcamp with PT and the lack of performance issue. But right now it's not even functional which is disappointing.
But why get a MBP then? When I bought the laptop in June 07', I felt it was the best laptop for the money when it comes to functionality, and good hardware out of the box. As well as being able to run XP on the same machine. BEFORE I found out I'd be having trouble with PTLE in BootCamp. I also use Sonar as well, so all was not lost!

If you buy the MacPro you might be able to get a hold of a 10.4 OSX disk, or you might want to inquire at a Mac store and see if you'll be able to bring your machine in and have them install 10.4, and have a dual boot system with Leopard, and Tiger. That way you'll be able to run PT on 10.4, and have 10.5 available when PT is supported.

I agree with 3JD.... You can build a killer PC with plenty of power without breaking the bank. I did, and I'm very happy. I still don't feel that Apple is justified charging what they do especially being they switched to PC components. Whether they stamp an Apple on it or not!! The price to build a PC these days is very competitive, and with all of the power available at such a low cost, I guess it comes down what OS you want to use... I'll continue to use a PC as my main production machine, and use the MBP for small on the go projects.
Also, I'd rather use PT on XP because there are still a few plugins, and VI's I have that run better, and are supported for XP, and not INTEL MACS. ie, Spectrasonics Trilogy, and Atmosphere. Although spectrasonics came out with a solution for intel Macs, it's not a very good one.

Good Luck!

-Dennis

PS... Don't use Vista! If you read other posts on the windows LE forum, you'll see that it's not delivering the performance everyone would like!!!
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  #5  
Old 12-16-2007, 01:23 AM
3JDamon 3JDamon is offline
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Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

I should also point out that the 8-core Mac you're considering is unqualified for Protools to say the least, especially using XP, and Vista will definitely not work before it's worth half of what you'll pay for it (that's a very generous estimate).

I was the first user to report success using Protools LE on a quad-core PC. I put in over four months of research on it, and I was still lucky to miss many landmines that I hadn't anticipated.

What are you doing for the next four months? Wouldn't you rather just follow the advice of folks here that are constantly pushing the envelope? Check out the Octa-PC/Quadzilla thread, it's all there. Or just drop Shan an email, and he'll tell you exactly what's the fastest known rig that works best with Protools. He's the guy you'll end up talking to when your overkill rig won't run Protools. You're far better off talking to him now rather than after you've dumped $7k.

And I dare say I'm skeptical that you could really push a tried-and-true high-end quad-core to tears. Mine is rather antiquated now, a two-year-old quad Opteron 2GHz, and I have never ran out of CPU even doing 32-track 24/96 mixes. I think your eyes are bigger than your true CPU demands. Don't make your wallet suffer as a result.

Don't get me started on spending that money on better mics/preamps/monitors, I hate to see a grown man cry.
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  #6  
Old 12-16-2007, 08:26 PM
LGM Productions LGM Productions is offline
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Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

hey guys

i really appreciate all the advice you guys have posted here, this was my first post and its great to see how helpful people are and take the time to write back.

i guess the reason i was thinking of heading down the mac path was the notion of having a machine that would last me in the studio for the next 4 years etc, ive recently upgraded my monitors and pres and the only thing i really have left to get together is a kickass machine. (and a nice collection of mics)

I've worked in IT now for close to 10 years and i've never even considered buying a mac before.
Ive been using pcs for 20 years now so its kinda my comfort zone, but i can pretty much fix anything on a mac also.

I've struggled to find PC specs that cut it close to what apple are putting out so i thought if i did it right (bought only the core system from apple and the other parts self sourcing) id come away from it better off than most ignorant people with a spare wad of cash.

At the moment im using a 3.2 single core with 4gb ram which maxes out pretty damn easy, so perhaps i might be shooting too high spec wise.. ive always bought the latest [bleep] so its kinda hard not to being an IT guy.

I was under the impression that 8-core support was OK for LE and that this was incorporated into a 7.3 le release.

ill check out the links you guys have posted and see what i can do,
i want a monster machine, either which way, but i want it to work with LE

cheers
LGM
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  #7  
Old 12-18-2007, 10:42 AM
3JDamon 3JDamon is offline
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Default Re: Intel 8-Core Penryn Macs running windows

Audio software in general rarely supports the newest "bleep". Macs used multiple CPU's for 5 years before Protools supported them. We're just lucky that when Digi decided to support multiple cores they didn't limit support to two cores. When I saw that and a compatible dual socket-940 mobo I jumped on a quad like a fat kid on a smartie.

But you can only be as cutting edge as the support is. I simply took advantage of a spike in the level of support. Often when Apple comes out with a substantially better top machine than what's available in a PC, there's a PC alternative out before audio software supports the Mac, and often the PC gear gets supported first. When I got my quad, the Quad G5 had already been shipping for 3 months, and wasn't fully supported by Protools for another 9 months after my quad was running PT 7. And the Mac was I think 40% more expensive, and I'd have to use external drives etc.
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