We have a lot of computers around the house, but the main family living-room workhorse is a 2008 Mac Pro. Everyone knows that computers have short working lives, but I’m thinking this one could be with us for a while.
Long-time readers my remember this computer as the one that nearly got hacked (as in, with a hacksaw).
Current Status · It’s got two 2.8GHz quad-core Xeons, 6G of memory, and a few terabytes of disk. It’s used for:
General-purpose computing for my 12-year-old: Essay-writing, Chinese dictionary, research.
Final Cut Express; except I sort of lost my video mojo and haven’t done this in a while.
Games; in particular, we had six houseguests over Christmas and it ran Skyrim for dozens of hours.
Music; ten thousand or so songs which play through a nice DAC into my high-end audio system.
I added in a bunch more disk to hold the music. Then just after the Christmas gaming marathon, the only-OK-for-2008 video card frapped out. I wondered online if it was worth upgrading, and some colleagues pointed out that for the cost of a good video card, I could get an XBox. But I found a reasonably-priced Radeon 5770 online (2010 technology, admittedly), and decided there was life in that “old” computer.
The Future · Well, two quad-core 64-bit 2.8GHz CPUs are, you know, a lot of processing power. I’m just trying to imagine the home-computing task for which I’d require more.
I suspect that if I’m going to keep this around, I should probably double the memory to 12G or so, and if I’m going to keep playing games, in 2014 or so I should install a 2012-vintage video card. And I could even drop in a couple more processors.
Is there a pattern here? Have quite a few of us, without actually planning to, bought the last new computer we’ll need for a few years? Put another way: Have some computers entered the category of things worth fixing?
[Footnote: This blog fragment courtesy of a rare repo sync into a new, empty repository. Some things are worth waiting for.]