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Silver Tower Mac Pro FAQ @ EveryMac.com

Also see: Mac Pro Specs | All Mac Q&As

EveryMac.com's Mac Pro Q&A answers questions about all silver-colored Mac Pro models. These systems have aluminum "traditional" tower cases with two CD/DVD optical drive bays and can be collectively identified by model numbers A1186 and A1289.

Apple Mac ProQuestions range from "How fast are the 'Mid-2012' Mac Pro models compared to one another? How fast are the 'Mid-2012' Mac Pro models compared to the 'Mid-2010' models replaced? Are they actually faster?" to "How do you upgrade the hard drives in the Mac Pro to SSDs? What SSD options are available? Which SSD configuration provides the fastest performance?" and everything in between.

Please note that all of the silver-colored tower Mac Pro models have been discontinued. Subsequent Mac Pro models are covered in the Cylinder Mac Pro Q&A.

Silver-colored aluminum tower Macs with just one CD/DVD optical drive bay are Power Mac G5 models.

The Power Mac G5 line can be collectively identified by model numbers A1047, A1093 and A1117. EveryMac.com offers a separate Power Mac G5 Q&A, also.

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Most Frequently Asked Silver Tower Mac Pro Q&As:

How do you upgrade the hard drives in the Mac Pro models? How many drives of what type are supported?

What are the default graphics cards provided with each Mac Pro? What Mac Pro compatible video cards are available for purchase later? Which video cards have which ports?

How do you upgrade the hard drives in the Mac Pro to SSDs? What SSD options are available? Which SSD configuration provides the fastest performance?

What are the differences between the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models and the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models that they replaced? Are there any differences? How can these lines be differentiated from one another?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Mid-2010" and "Mid-2012" (Nehalem/Westmere) Mac Pro models? What type of RAM do these models use? How much RAM do they actually support? Are these models backwards compatible with earlier Mac Pro RAM?

How fast are the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models compared to one another? How fast are the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models compared to the "Mid-2010" models replaced? Are they actually faster?

How do you upgrade the processors in the "Original/Early 2008" Mac Pro models? How are the processors mounted?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro? What type of RAM does it use? How much RAM does it actually support? How do you install RAM to maximize performance?

What are the "pros and cons" of the Mac Pro? Is it right for my needs?

How do you install a second optical drive or replace the primary one in the Mac Pro models? What options are available for the second Mac Pro "optical drive bay"?

Software Compatibility Q&As:

What version of the Mac OS is pre-installed on the Mac Pro models? What is the maximum version of OS X supported by each series?

How can I upgrade or "hack" an incompatible Intel Mac -- like the original Mac Pro -- to run OS X 10.8 "Mountain Lion"? Is it even possible?

Can the Mac Pro run all Mac OS X applications written for PowerPC-based Macs?

Can the Mac Pro run Mac OS 9/Classic applications?

Can the Mac Pro run Windows?

Comparison & Performance Q&As (Mid-2012):

What are the differences between the standard "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models? What are the differences between the standard and custom configurations of the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro line?

What are the differences between the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models and the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models that they replaced? Are there any differences? How can these lines be differentiated from one another?

How fast are the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models compared to one another? How fast are the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models compared to the "Mid-2010" models replaced? Are they actually faster?

How much noise does the "Mid-2012" Mac Pro make compared to earlier lines?

Comparison & Performance Q&As (Mid-2010):

What are the differences between the standard "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models? What are the differences between the standard and custom configurations of the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro line?

What are the differences between the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models and the "Early 2009" Mac Pro models that they replaced?

How fast are the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models compared to one another? How much faster are the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro models compared to the "Early 2009" models replaced?

How much noise does the "Mid-2010" Mac Pro make compared to earlier lines?

Comparison & Performance Q&As (Early 2009):

What are the differences between the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro models?

What are the differences between the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro models and the "Early 2008" Mac Pro models that they replaced?

How much faster are the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro models than the "Early 2008" Mac Pro models?

How much noise does the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro make compared to earlier models?

Comparison & Performance Q&As (Early 2008):

What are the differences between the "Early 2008" (Harpertown/Penryn) Mac Pro configurations?

What are the major differences between the "Early 2008" (Harpertown/Penryn) Mac Pro and the original Mac Pro?

How much faster are the "Early 2008" (Harpertown/Penryn) Mac Pro models compared to the original Mac Pro?

How much noise does the "Early 2008" (Harpertown/Penryn) Mac Pro make compared to the original Mac Pro?

Comparison & Performance Q&As (Original):

What are the major differences between the original Mac Pro and the Power Macintosh G5?

What are the differences between the original Mac Pro configurations?

How does the stock original Mac Pro compare to a similar Windows PC?

How fast is the stock original Mac Pro in real-world tests compared to its predecessor? How fast does it run Photoshop?

How much faster are the custom configured original Mac Pro models with either 3.0 GHz "Quad Core" or 3.0 GHz "Eight Core" processors compared to the stock Mac Pro? How much slower is the custom configured Mac Pro 2.0 GHz "Quad Core" model?

What is the overall gaming performance of the original Mac Pro? How well does it run Windows games?

How much noise does the original Mac Pro make compared to the Power Macintosh G5?

Expansion & Upgrade Q&As:

How do you upgrade the processors in the "Original/Early 2008" Mac Pro models? How are the processors mounted?

How do you upgrade the processors in the "Early 2009" Mac Pro models? How are the processors mounted?

How do you upgrade the processors in the "Mid-2010" and "Mid-2012" Mac Pro models? How are the processors mounted?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the original Mac Pro? What type of RAM does it use? How much RAM does it actually support?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Early 2008" (Harpertown/Penryn) Mac Pro? What type of RAM does it use? How much RAM does it actually support? Is it backwards compatible with RAM from the original Mac Pro?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Early 2009/Nehalem" Mac Pro? What type of RAM does it use? How much RAM does it actually support? How do you install RAM to maximize performance?

How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Mid-2010" and "Mid-2012" (Nehalem/Westmere) Mac Pro models? What type of RAM do these models use? How much RAM do they actually support? Are these models backwards compatible with earlier Mac Pro RAM?

How do you upgrade the hard drives in the Mac Pro models? How many drives of what type are supported?

How do you upgrade the hard drives in the Mac Pro to SSDs? What SSD options are available? Which SSD configuration provides the fastest performance?

What are the capabilities of the "SuperDrive" provided by the Mac Pro?

How do you install a second optical drive or replace the primary one in the Mac Pro models? What options are available for the second Mac Pro "optical drive bay"?

How many PCI slots of what type are provided by the Mac Pro models? How do you install a PCIe card in the Mac Pro?

How does the original Mac Pro allocate lanes for the PCIe bus? What configurations are possible?

What AirPort and Bluetooth capabilities are provided by the Mac Pro models?

Graphics & Video Q&As:

What are the default graphics cards provided with each Mac Pro? What Mac Pro compatible video cards are available for purchase later? Which video cards have which ports?

What is the maximum resolution supported by the default configurations of the Mac Pro models? How many displays can the Mac Pro support with the default graphics card?

Does the Mac Pro support standard PC video cards? Does it support SLI or Crossfire?

How many PCI slots of what type are provided by the Mac Pro models? How do you install a PCIe card in the Mac Pro?

How does the original Mac Pro allocate lanes for the PCIe bus? What configurations are possible?

Design, Configuration & Purchasing Q&As:

Who designed the Mac Pro?

Where can I buy a Mac Pro?

What are the default configurations?

What are the "pros and cons" of the Mac Pro? Is it right for my needs?




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