Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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mohawk33
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Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:10 pm

Hello Ableton-Users!

I am considering to buy an old Mac Pro (Aluminium case) and i am not sure which one to get as there are quite a few models to choose from :roll:

I am thinking about the 1,1 & 2,1 or 3,1 Models as they are relatively cheap used....

I want to use it only for Ableton Suite 8... no Graphic stuff or any other applications. I know that these machines can only use Mac OS 10.7 at max.

Currently i am using the following equipment:

MacBook (Late 2007) Intel Core 2 Duo 2,2 GHz
RAM: 4GB
Alesis io26 (Firewire 400) .... this external soundcard has problems with Mac OS "el Capitan".... i heard
analog Drummachines and synths
Ableton Suite 8

Would be any Mac Pro (starting from 2006) an upgrade to the current setup?,
Which Mac Pro (not the new ones.... i am a student on a budget :-) would u guys recommend? and how much should i pay for one used?

Any help would be much appriciated :mrgreen:
Last edited by mohawk33 on Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

inkjt510
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by inkjt510 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:45 pm

i would strongly advise against buying a computer that old - you're almost guaranteed to run into update issues, and 1gb of ram (standard on mac pro 2.1) is under the minimum requirements for running live 8.

If youre working on a tight budget I'd think about an old macbook pro with an ssd upgrade

Tarekith
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by Tarekith » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:56 pm

Agreed, you'd probably get better performance with a new Mac Mini.

mohawk33
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:57 pm

Thanks for the fast answer....

i meant the 1,1 or 2,1 or 3,1 Modells... sorry corrected that from the previous post already...

Well i dont know if i ever want to upgrade... because live 8 runs allright and has all the features i need.... an my fire wire interface is not compatible with el capitan

mohawk33
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 5:04 pm

Yeah the standard ram configuration is not enough. but ram expansions are relatively cheap... an the used ones i am looking at have from 4 to 16 GB already installed....

inkjt510
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by inkjt510 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 5:12 pm

Updates happen for a reason. Are you willing to forgo bugfixes, stability updates, hardware/software support improvements for the rest of the life of your machine?

mohawk33
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 5:20 pm

You are right updates are important ... but i am looking for a machine solely for studio use... no internet , no other stuff /application... etc.

and i only got the license for suite 8, and my audio equpment/interface only supports Firewire 400/mac os X 10.10 max at the moment...

I go by the old phrase: "never change a running system" i just want to upgrade from the late 2007 macbook. and dont want to buy all new equipment and software/licenses :mrgreen:

steko
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by steko » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:15 pm

3,1 & newer are still great & fast machines. If you can get one real cheap in good condition, go for it.

3,1 is still supported with El Capitan, but probably not with the next version...

Maybe a cheap 4,1 + OWC Mercury Accelsior E2 PCI Express SSD...
Rahad Jackson wrote:My Awesome Mix Tape #6

inkjt510
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by inkjt510 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:46 pm

mohawk33 wrote:You are right updates are important ... but i am looking for a machine solely for studio use... no internet , no other stuff /application... etc.

and i only got the license for suite 8, and my audio equpment/interface only supports Firewire 400/mac os X 10.10 max at the moment...

I go by the old phrase: "never change a running system" i just want to upgrade from the late 2007 macbook. and dont want to buy all new equipment and software/licenses :mrgreen:
Sounds like you've already convinced yourself, so go for it i guess

mohawk33
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Sat Mar 26, 2016 11:19 am

I am not totally convinced ;-) yet

Just wanted to hear some experiences from people working with these machines an ableton :mrgreen:

fishmonkey
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by fishmonkey » Sat Mar 26, 2016 12:49 pm

compare the performance with other Macs on Geekbench:

https://browser.primatelabs.com/mac-benchmarks

i don't think those old Mac Pros stack up too well. besides not being that fast, they are also noisy, use a lot of power, and only have SATA 3 GB/s hard drive bays...
badbrainz wrote: I'm a drummer, so I'm already at an intellectual disadvantage here

jlgrimes
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by jlgrimes » Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:00 am

I would steer clear of a computer older than five years or so old (unless you are getting the machine for a very very low cost).


You probably would be much better off spending the money on a lesser newer computer (even a PC).



But in the end it depends on what you are trying to do.

If you are planning on using a lot of VSTi's (especially newer VSTi's made within the last five years or so), you definitely want something pretty new.

If you are planning on recording/mixing audio tracks and maybe just using external midi instruments, older low CPU intensive VSTis, you probably could get by with an older computer and if you don't mind freezing/unfreezing tracks a lot and waiting on slow hard drives and what not, you probably could have a decent working setup.

If your main goal is just something to write songs and not really mixing projects on (recording audio, using maybe older low CPU intensive VSTis), you would be definitely fine with an older computer but that said you probably would be better off taking whatever money they want to charge for the old Mac Pro and buy something new.

produc3rboy
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by produc3rboy » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:49 pm

Hey dude, I wanted to share my post with you. This is a pic of my studio running an older Mac Pro. http://imgur.com/lzrWVgT This machine was manufactured in 2009 MacPro4,1. I upgraded the stock Dual CPUs from some I got through eBay. The firmware had to be updated in order for the new CPUs to work. It is now MacPro5,1. I also upgraded the GPU and flashed it. My geekbench score now is in the neighborhood of 30,000.

These are the specs:
2009 Mac Pro 5,1, 2x 3.33 GHz 6-Core Xeon CPU, 2x SSD RAID 0 OS X Mavericks 10.9, 1x SSD Windows 10 Bootcamp, 56 GB RAM, 2x 5TB HDD, 1x 2TB HDD, GTX 680 flashed GPU.

Now, we are talking about the generation before the MacPro4,1. I own the MacPro1,1 as well and let me tell you its limitations. Maximum OS that machine natively supports is 10.7 Lion. There is a way to hack it to run Mavericks but that's a process that I am still trying to learn to do properly. That means you can no longer update. My suggestion is to get at least the newer style MacPro4,1 because this machine is still supported and upgradeable. If you choose this option, just understand that there are two versions of this model. The Single (Quad Core) and Dual (Eight core) CPU. The single CPU will support 4 slots of RAM, and the Dual CPU will support 8 slots of RAM. I recommend Mac Pro "Eight Core" 2.26 (2009/Nehalem) if you choose to upgrade the CPUs. If you choose not to upgrade, then I would just choose the model that you feel that would suit your needs.

Info here:
http://www.everymac.com/ultimate-mac-lo ... =MacPro4,1

mohawk33
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by mohawk33 » Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:17 am

Hey Dudes :mrgreen:

Thanks for all the great information you shared with me!

@ produc3rboy: Thats a nice setup man! Which version of live are u running?
haha i am on everymac constantly for these last days ... great page :mrgreen:

After i posted my first entry i did a little research. and man this stuff is getting complicated with these mac pros ;-)

My Problem is that i am using an alesis io26 as interface wich max. support 10.8.... Its a great interface and has all the features an inputs i need. Its still running great...
The next thing is that im using Live 8 Suite.... which only suports mavericks at max... right?

So if ever uprgade to another OSX i have to buy a new live 9 license and a new interface. I dont see the point to throw out the alesis out of the window.... its still working great...

Currently i am running Snow leopard (on Macbook Late 2007 4gb ram) which i think is one of the greatest OSX´s ever made... slick an running like a champ.

I know that the 1.1 and 2.1 are not able to run 64 bit mode in snow leopard....the 3.1 could do it but i am not sure if 64 bit Ableton is an upgrade....maybe it adresses more ram, ok...

I just thougth it would be benefical to stay at snow lepard, live 8 and the alesis io26 an upgrade the computer to a system that fits perfect(???) to theses circumstances...my old macbook gets fan noisy very fast... (cpu meter ca. 30-50 %)

What i do in live:

I record tracks from my microKorg, novation drumstation and electribe live at once (like a live set)
using midi from the micorkorg to route it to the standard VSTs of Live (analog,collision, tension etc)
sometimes i also use the "drummachine" samples from live ... for some roland TR stuff ;-)

So could i get along with an 1.1 or 2.1 with these work tasks? I am also considering a 3.1..... The 4.1 is still very expensive

For all the other stuff ... Internet .... Youtube... Spotify etc. i am considering an newer mac mini (maybe 2010)... the mac pro would just get studio tasks....


p.s. windows pc is no option i am on mac since the good old days ;-)

produc3rboy
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Re: Mac Pro 1,1 or 2,1 for Ableton Suite 8?

Post by produc3rboy » Thu Mar 31, 2016 1:45 pm

@mohawk33

I am running Live 9.5

According to Ableton's website, the System requirements to run Live 8 for OSX: 10.4.11 (10.5 or later recommended). So that means Live 8 can run on your current system and a future system should you decide to upgrade to mavericks.

Now, I believe you may be able to use your Alesis io26. Sometimes, the webmasters do not update the website to reflect current operating system requirements. Maybe at the time the io26 was supported, the current system requirements were 10.8.

My suggestion: Test 10.9 Mavericks on your current setup on a separate hard drive. If you have a spare hard drive, install 10.9 Mavericks on that so you do not lose your current Snow Leopard 10.6 operating system. On this new install of 10.9, you can install Live 8 and see if the Alesis io26 is recognized. Once you test to see if it works, you can be sure if it works on the newer operating systems.

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