Every Port Stuffed: Mac Pro

adding_USB3_to_MacPro

This afternoon I received a 4-port Inateck USB3 PCI express card for my early 2008 Mac Pro. (No Office Space jokes, please.) I’ll be putting the card through its paces and testing out its USB3 performance once I have a USB3 external drive to test it with. (In my preliminary testing, the Inateck card performs well with USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 devices, like the CanoScan 4400 flatbed scanner that’s currently hooked up to it.)

The early 2008 Mac Pro has been a great workhorse. While it lacks Thunderbolt connections, in every other way I have been able to expand this workstation’s capabilities. First through additional RAM, followed by a plethora of hard drives and solid state drives, then with GPU cards and eSata boards, and finally this USB3 card.

Every slot on my Mac Pro is now fully occupied.

every_port_stuffed

This Mac has served me well and just passed the six year mark as of February. While the new Mac Pro (the garbage can model) looks great and has tons of additional ports, I like having the ability to internally expand my computer as needed. Having 4 built-in drive bays doesn’t hurt either.

Apple has since moved past the tower based desktop, for better or for worse. In my opinion, I feel it’s for the worse. Personally, I’d rather have a tower-based unit that I can expand as opposed to a small form factor with a slew of cables and cords attached to it. When the time comes for me to inevitably replace my Mac Pro, I will more likely move my main machine to a Retina-equipped Macbook Pro and forgo the new Mac Pro altogether.

The early 2008 Mac Pro is the best computer I’ve ever owned. It’s also the only computer I’ve used for a period of more than six years – thanks to its expansion capabilities. I hope I can get at least two more years out of this computer before I retire it.

-Krishna

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  • gregb999
    May 9, 2014 at 9:51 am

    Agree with you fully on the Mac Pro. The simple, easy options available from just putting in a card are so handy.

    What I really wish is that Apple made a tower that was between the Mini and the Mac Pro. I don’t care for the iMac (I use a 24″ display with a 4 port KVM that won’t work with the display on the iMac), but still want something with more processing power.

    I started to do a Hackintosh before I found a good deal on a 2009 Mac Pro last summer, but when I need to upgrade/replace the Mac Pro, I’ll probably revisit the idea of a Hackintosh.

    • Krishna M. Sadasivam
      May 9, 2014 at 4:06 pm

      Good to hear, Greg. I’m with you on having a Mac tower in the current line up.

      The only real upshot to the new Mac Pro, in my view, is that the older generation models are much more affordable now. Lots of power and expandability for under $1000 in most cases.