We're going to do something Apple hasn't done in a long time - we're going to upgrade a Mac Pro.
The biggest performance boost we saw for the Mac Pro was using the OWC Mercury Accelsior PCI Express SSD
. The SSD starts at $300, but Leo picked up the 240GB variety which costs about $470. Boot times were sped up extensively.
Leo opted not to create his own Fusion Drive
because he wanted crazy performance. Compared to a traditional HDD, the SSD blew away the read/write speeds of the spinning drive.
Apple officially supports only several graphics cards. Leo picked up the Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 for over $400. According to the benchmarks ran, the Sapphire just didn't perform that much better than the stock card that came with the Mac Pro (from back in 2010).
OS X has recently been able to support graphics cards that were built for Windows. However, in our tests we could not see the results due to a connector issue.
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