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Mac Pro Buyer's Guide: Step-by-Step

Last updated 2009-11-10 - Send Feedback
Related: how-to, Mac Pro, memory, SSD

You can build an ideal Mac Pro using this step-by-step page.

If you need help, contact us for consulting for your specific needs. We save most clients time and money— get it right the first time.

Other Mac?

Not building a Mac Pro? See Choosing and Configuring a Mac.

Build a screaming-fast Mac Pro

You can—and should—familiarize yourself with the other materials on this site before buying a new Mac, but this page condenses it all down to the essentials and makes it easy to assemble a screamingly fast Mac Pro that will prove ideal for nearly all users.

Upgrade Your Mac Memory
At much lower cost than Apple, with more options.
Lloyd recommends 64GB for iMac or Mac Pro for photography/videography.

Order “bare bones” new or refurbished Mac Pro Nehalem

Get the mimimum configuration 2.66Mhz single-processor, quad-core Mac Pro. Do not get dual optical drives or you won’t be able to use the lower optical bay for a boot drive.

If you want the 2.93Mhz model or the eight-core model, that’s fine, but please read this before proceeeding. Avoid the 2.26GHz model.

Buy Refurbished Mac Pro | Buy New Mac Pro

Order memory and hard drives from OWC

The ideal setup for most users is 12GB memory, one solid state drive (SSD) for boot, and five matched hard drives (four internal, plus a spare). For details, read this.

The SSD yields performance and frees up all internal drive bays for your data (details). You can omit the SSD and boot off an internal drive or external Firewire 800 if you prefer.

To get the right parts, click the link that matches the Mac Pro you ordered:

Any speed Quad-core

Any speed 8-core

If you need 24GB of memory for your 8-core, use this link:

Any speed 8-core (24GB)

Take delivery of your orders.

Configure

Now you’re ready to assemble and configure your new system.

Click here for step-by-step instructions

 

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