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  1. #1


    Member Since
    May 10, 2013
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    Recommend a used Intel Mac tower for me...
    So, unfortunately I'm finally ready to move on from my trusty PPC G5 Quad. Mostly due to the lack of updates and software compatibility!

    I'm on an extremely limited budget, but need the capability to run all current software including Avid Pro Tools 10.

    I'm basically willing to look as far back as the first Intel machines that meet my needs. I'll get the nicest one I can afford obviously, but I'm talking <$500 used market.

    Any do's and don't's as far as lemons, reliability, stability, up-to-date-ness?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TronnyJenkins View Post
    I'm basically willing to look as far back as the first Intel machines that meet my needs. I'll get the nicest one I can afford obviously, but I'm talking <$500 used market.
    The only "Mac Tower" Apple has sold since the G5's...is the Mac Pro. With a budget of $500 or less...the ONLY model that fits these parameters is a 2006 1st generation Mac Pro.

    And to be honest (from what I've seen on e-Bay)...$500 isn't enough in most cases.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  3. #3

    harryb2448's Avatar
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    Imac 27" Retina 3.3GHz, 512GB Flash, 16GB memory, OS X.11.4.
    As Nick suggests $500 will not buy much alas. If you have to lay out your hard earned, consider a desktop that will at least run the current operating nsystem, Mountain Lion. A 2007 iMac model A1224, known as the iMac 7.1 or a Mac Pro model A1186, known as the 3.1, are the earliest Macs to run Mountain Lion.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

  4. #4

    cwa107's Avatar
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    15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD
    You could probably get a decent, used Core 2 Duo Mac Mini for that kind of money on eBay. Unless you really need the internal expansion capabilities, the Mac Mini should be more than capable of running Pro Tools and most other general purpose computing. Where it won't shine is in games, but then, you didn't mentioned that as a requirement.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  5. #5


    Member Since
    May 10, 2013
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    Found two different Woodcrest Xeon "quad" Mac Pros for around $300 on CL... Would one of these hold me over temporarily? I have a possible client who would basically be booking enough time monthly to cover my rent... So I must upgrade to suit his needs!

    I'm thinking here to just have the capability to run my necessary software, and then later on when I have the funds purchase a newer, nicer Mac Pro.

  6. #6

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TronnyJenkins View Post
    Found two different Woodcrest Xeon "quad" Mac Pros for around $300 on CL... Would one of these hold me over temporarily? I have a possible client who would basically be booking enough time monthly to cover my rent... So I must upgrade to suit his needs!

    I'm thinking here to just have the capability to run my necessary software, and then later on when I have the funds purchase a newer, nicer Mac Pro.
    If you found any (functional) Mac Pro for under $500, you should jump on it....
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  7. #7

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TronnyJenkins View Post
    Found two different Woodcrest Xeon "quad" Mac Pros for around $300 on CL...
    Sometimes you can get some REALLY good deals on CL if you're lucky!

    As cwa107 mentioned...if you can get ANY Mac Pro in working condition for under $500...SNAP IT UP (if they're not gone already)!!!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  8. #8


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post
    Sometimes you can get some REALLY good deals on CL if you're lucky!

    As cwa107 mentioned...if you can get ANY Mac Pro in working condition for under $500...SNAP IT UP (if they're not gone already)!!!

    - Nick
    Thanks Nick, I did just that.
    Just to let everyone know, I snagged a Woodcrest dual (quad) for $325. I know it won't be my last computer, but at least I can run PT10 (Flash, Firefox, etc, etc) , and sell my PPC to mostly pay for it. I can plan to use it for editing when I have funds for a fancy new one.

    Thanks to everyone who replied.

  9. #9

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TronnyJenkins View Post
    Thanks Nick, I did just that.
    Just to let everyone know, I snagged a Woodcrest dual (quad) for $325. I know it won't be my last computer, but at least I can run PT10 (Flash, Firefox, etc, etc) , and sell my PPC to mostly pay for it. I can plan to use it for editing when I have funds for a fancy new one.

    Thanks to everyone who replied.
    That's amazing. One heck of a deal!

    I don't think you'll feel the need for a new machine for quite some time, and going from a PPC Mac to that will be like going from a Yugo to a Ferrari!
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  10. #10

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by TronnyJenkins View Post
    ...I snagged a Woodcrest dual (quad) for $325.
    Heck of a deal. If someone was selling the same computer on CL in my area for the same price...I would snap it up!

    Congrats,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

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