12/1/2014 Apple/Mac/OS X News, Tips and Tech Articles - xlr8yourmac.com
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Reader notes on 2008 Mac Pro Upgrades (802.11AC/BT 4.0, CPUs, SSD):
"802.11ac and other updates to my 2008 MacPro
I have been following your site for over a decade now and it has been a great resource. I decided to add my contribution to your site today. I have been able to add 802.11ac compatibility to my 2008 Mac pro with the following items.

I purchased an Apple Broadcom BCM94360CD 802.11ac mini Wifi + Bluetooth 4.0 Wireless card from ebay, It was less than $29. I also purchased a Mini PCI-E Adapter Card For Apple BCM94360CD BCM94331CD for less than $11. All items took about two weeks to come in from china but I was able to install them easily.

I used all 3 of the airport antennas and removed the bluetooth antenna from the original card on the motherboard.

The installation was straight forward once I found which of the antenna terminals was the bluetooth terminal on the card. Basically, if you are looking at the terminals on the card with the antenna terminals facing up. The second one from the right is the bluetooth antenna connection.

This was a quite a bit cheaper solution for me than macvidcards and everything works perfectly running OS X 10.10.1. I was able to get all the full features (Wifi/BT) that a new system has. This was quite an improvement from the old card in terms of speed and range.

As a side note, I also updated both my processors to 3.2 GHz from the stock 2.8 GHz processors using the guides on your site. I was able to find both 3.2GHz processors on eBay for less than $100.

I aslo installed an Aapricorn Velocity Solo x2 (www.apricorn.com/vel-solox2.html) and an OCZ vertex I had purchased a year ago. The Vertex requires no drivers and I am using it as a boot drive. I was able to text it with MacOS X 10.7, 10.8, 10.9 and 10.10.1. I am enjoying really fast boot speeds (under 20 seconds) and I am enjoying 6Gbp/s speeds. Going from Mac OS to Windows using boot camp on a second drive has not been a problem. However, going from windows back to Mac was a bit of an issue with boot camp. Boot Camp does not seem to recognize the Velocity Solo x2 Drive as a choice. No biggie, I have a third drive with OS X so I was able to select it in Windows and then I had to go back to my SSD drive from OS X.

Also I decided to take a chance and I replaced the stock video card with a Manufacturer refurbished EVGA GTX 760 FTW 4GB card from Newegg. I had to purchase the power cables for the logic board separately (one 6pin and one 6 to 8 pin). Reading the specs online for both the mac pro's PSU and the video card + the addition of the higher speed processors I was able to determine that the Mac Pro's 980W PSU would have sufficient power for all the upgrades. This included the power provided to the video card from the logic board.

The only issue with using a PC card is that you won't get a boot screen (no Mac EFI), but I don't care about it at this time. If I ever get into a pinch I still have the original card. One thing I did notice was that using the recovery partition while holding the R key down on the keyboard on boot up, I was able to see the boot screen. I thought this was something someone else might find interesting.

I have been testing the system extensibly for about a month now and everything works without a hiccup. I spent all together close to $400 (without counting the SSD drive) and it has given my old MacPro a new life for a few years to come.
I hope this info is useful for other readers considering upgrading their old systems.
Cheers, Francisco"

Thanks. (Added wifi comments to page on Mac/OS X compatible 802.11ac adapters.)

Apple/related News, Software/Updates, Op-Ed, PR:
Apple Support/How-To Article Updates:

More at page of Tips, Troubleshooting & How-To articles for Mac/OS X/iOS Users.

Recent Updates, Tips, DIY Upgrades and Repairs:
List of Updates, DIY Repair, Upgrade articles, Tips and more you may have missed. (Topics range from OS/software updates, troubleshooting to hardware upgrades and repairs.)

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Previous News Archive Summary:
    Friday, November 28th News Archive
  • Black & White 2 for Mac released
  • LEGO® Batman™ 3: Beyond Gotham for Mac released
  • OWC Radio interview with Grammy winning Audio Engineer Gary Noble
  • Steve Jobs Lives on at the Patent Office
  • Review of iWork 2014
  • Apple Support/How-To Article Updates
    - All about Mac notebook Batteries
    - About iPhone, iPad, and iPod accessories
    - How to Sync your iPhone/iPad/iPod with iTunes via USB
    - Get help with hardware features on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch
    - Use iTunes to restore your iOS device to factory settings
    - Using Game Center on your Mac or iOS device
    - Add an email account on your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch
    - (iOS) Configuring additional outgoing mail servers
    - (iOS) How to Use AirPlay Mirroring
    - (iOS) Connecting to Wi-Fi
    - (iOS) About File Sharing

For links to older news pages, see the Archives.

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