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Old Sep 7, 2010, 07:48 PM   #1
jcaraballo70
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ATI HD 4870 vs 5770 vs 5870 on Mac Pro (3,1) 2.8 Octo Core

Im sorry if I'm asking a noob question but I'm having a hard time trying to figure out which Video Card I should get. To me it appears the higher the Model number the better the card.
What throws me off is the face that the 4870 cost more than the 5770 which appears to have better specs. I don't think I can afford the 5870 at this time so depending on the replies I might not even consider the 5870.

I want a Video Card to run in Windows 7 under BootCamp for gaming. I also want to just plug in the New 27" Apple LED with no issues - unlike my current ATI HD 2600 card.

These are the questions I have...

(1) Is there a HUGE gaming performance difference between the 5870 and the 5770?

(2) Why does the older 4870 cost more than the 5770?

(3) Why do some recommend using a DVI to Mini Display Port adapter ($200) when you can get a New Video Card for $249.00?

I would also appreciate any links to read up on if you have any.

I plan to sell my 30" Apple Cinema Display to pay for a New 27" Apple LED and a New Video Card.

PS - Any other alternatives to the 27" Apple LED? Any of the competition have a similar product?

Thanks for your time.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 10:07 PM   #2
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There is a reasonable difference in gaming performance between the 5870 and 5770.

Check this 5870 review with benchmarks. You'll notice though there's no 5770 being compared, however, check this 5770 review - you'll see that in most cases the 4870 does slightly better than the 5770, so when you're checking the first link, simply compare the 5870 and 4870 and think "ah, the 5770 would do a bit worse" It's why when people ask about upgrading to a 5770 to a 4870, the general response is to not bother.

Price difference might be cause the 4870 is slightly better. And Apple doesn't particularly reduce the prices of their stuff even as time goes on and they're older.

And people recommend a Dual-Link DVI to MDP adapter ($99) if they plan on using 2 or more DVI monitors. If you have DP monitors, don't worry about it.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 10:19 PM   #3
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Check out this Bare Feats benchmark comparison of those cards (and more) done on the Mac Pro 2008 (3,1). It doesn't do comparisons in Windows 7, but at least you can get an idea of how it would perform in OS X using that particular Mac Pro. Much better than the Toms Hardware stuff which doesn't compare them using your hardware.

Mac Pro 2008 GPUs: Radeon HD 5870 + 5770 versus older GPUs
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 10:23 PM   #4
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1. Yes, going by the Tom's Hardware Guide 2010 Gaming Graphics Benchmarks. The sums of tests at 1920x1200 no AA shows the 4870 as 8% faster than the 5770 while the 5870 ranks 71% faster than the 5770. Looking at a few other cumulative tests the percentages seem to be about the same.

So for gaming the 5870 should net a 70% to 75% boost in frame rates over the 5770. Though in practicality this means you will be able to use higher quality settings when playing new games. Most any game two or more years old you could likely set everything to max with either card.

2. This is pretty typical of any high end cards in the Mac world even after they have been dethroned. The Radeon 9800 Pro held a high price for a long time as with the X1900 and so on (I wouldn't be surprised if they still cost over $100).

Though a hundred extra for a nearly identical card is quite ridiculous. I am not certain but if I recall correctly the 5770 uses a lot less energy.

3. Dunno, sounds a bit insane to me too. Unless you needed multiple cards for many displays.

For gaming I don't know if the 27" would be great. Unless things have changed IPS panels don't have the best response times lending themselves to ghosting in games. Whereas lower cost TN panels though lacking the fine color accuracy of the IPS panels have don't have the ghosting problems.

By the way I have a TN panel I think it's color accuracy is quite good for looking a photos, watching movies and playing games. No it's not lab quality but I am not making videos, in desktop publishing nor even a hobbyist photographer.
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 07:44 AM   #5
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5870 is twice as fast as 5770. Apple never drops the prices thus 4870 costs more. However, 5770 is about as fast and supports newer technologies such as DirectX 11.

If you're going to use 27" or 30" monitor, then I would recommend the 5870 as resolutions like that need some GPU power. Although it depends on the games you're going to play. Another thing you may want to consider is buying a PC card and use that under Boot Camp as it will fully work under Windows and it's also a lot cheaper. Then when the magic has happened, you can flash it to work under OS X too. Just a thought if you're running low on cash
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 08:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellhammer View Post
5870 is twice as fast as 5770. Apple never drops the prices thus 4870 costs more. However, 5770 is about as fast and supports newer technologies such as DirectX 11.

If you're going to use 27" or 30" monitor, then I would recommend the 5870 as resolutions like that need some GPU power. Although it depends on the games you're going to play. Another thing you may want to consider is buying a PC card and use that under Boot Camp as it will fully work under Windows and it's also a lot cheaper. Then when the magic has happened, you can flash it to work under OS X too. Just a thought if you're running low on cash
Hellhammer - I just love you man (No Homo) and was waiting for your reply

Something that I did not know!
Are you actually saying that I can leave my ATI 2600 in the Mac Pro and go out and buy a PeeCee Winblows Video Card put that in another slot and use that card just for gaming??!!!
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 09:24 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
Hellhammer - I just love you man (No Homo) and was waiting for your reply

Something that I did not know!
Are you actually saying that I can leave my ATI 2600 in the Mac Pro and go out and buy a PeeCee Winblows Video Card put that in another slot and use that card just for gaming??!!!
Yeah, that's exactly what I mean. You can buy PC 5870 for ~350$ and use that for gaming under Windows. Then when you're back in OS X, just use the 2600 (you may want to invest on DVI switch).

Now that I think about it, it doesn't sound THAT great deal. The Apple 5870 costs what, 449$? That's only 100$ more than the cheapest PC version. Then if you bought the 27" ACD, you would need a GPU with MiniDP and there aren't many on the PC world so that would set you back more than the cheapest 5870s. As I said, you would need a video switch and switches that support resolutions like that are not cheap so in the end, you might end up paying MORE than you would with the Apple version.

I would just get the Apple 5870 and then wait little longer on the 27" ACD purchase, you already have the 30" which is amazing. 5770 is good but for any serious gaming, the 5870 is worth it
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 10:47 AM   #8
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Thanks!

Lots for me to think about there.
I might just keep the 30" ACD and get a PeeCee version of the HD 5870.

I also have to factror in buying Windows 7.
I hope I can find a Student/Teacher edition that isnt too pricey.

Thank you again for all your help.

By the way, I wouldn't get a switch - I would just unplug from one card to the other. My set up allows me to switch very easily. Lots of room and access to the back of the Mac Pro.
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 10:52 AM   #9
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Oh and by the way, from my littel bit of hunting around...

It appears that the "low end" versions of the HD 5870 dont have MDP's (the $350-400 price range) the "Higher End" HD 5870's not only have 2GB of RAM vs the 1GB on the Mac Version but also include MDP's. The prices are $450+

The other thing I noticed is that the Apple version is sold out but the PeeCee versions are plentyful.
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 10:58 AM   #10
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Windows 7

OMG!
Had no idea that there are sooooo many versions of Winblows 7!

I don't know which one to get! LMFAO
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 11:55 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
By the way, I wouldn't get a switch - I would just unplug from one card to the other. My set up allows me to switch very easily. Lots of room and access to the back of the Mac Pro.
That's a good thing then, makes it easier and cheaper

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
It appears that the "low end" versions of the HD 5870 dont have MDP's (the $350-400 price range) the "Higher End" HD 5870's not only have 2GB of RAM vs the 1GB on the Mac Version but also include MDP's. The prices are $450+
If you're going to keep your 30" ACD which has dual-link DVI, you're just fine as most of the PC cards have dual-link DVI (if not all of them). DisplayPort is tricky as you need pricey adapter if you want to connect computer with DVI to monitor with DP.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
Had no idea that there are sooooo many versions of Winblows 7!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16832116754

It's OEM but it works fine, you just don't get support from MS. I always use OEMs as they are much cheaper and I couldn't care less about 90 day support from MS
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 02:15 PM   #12
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Thanks Hellhammer!

Thanks for all the tips and links!
$99 is a steal and I agree with your OEM comments.

Not selling my 30" ACD does put a bit of a strain on the wallet.
Granted selling my 30" ACD will net me cash for a Apple 27" LED but then like you mentioned all the hassles with MDP.

Keeping everything "status quo" really leaves me with "out-of-the-pocket" expenses of buying Windows ($99 - not too bad) and a PeeCee Video Card.

My wife would kill me if she found out I spent $500+ just to play WoW, WoW Expansion (Cata), Diablo3 (coming) and the All New Star Wars MMO (Nov 2011). I just might look at the HD 5770 (PeeCee version) which is still WORLDS beyond my HD 2600.

You seem to be an expert and know allot. What PeeCee Video card would you recommend (giving the games I mentioned above) that would be the next tier down from the HD 5870?

I realize from all the links you gave me thats a HUGE step down but also realize its a HUGE step up from my HD 2600 (which by the way is not too bad running games in OS X). I have been playing WoW since 2008 on this Mac Pro with 30" ACD using that "junky" OEM HD 2600.

It appears that the prices of Video cards from the HD 5870 start to fall hundreds of dollars! Like the average price of the HD 5870 is $400 and then the next card seems to be 1/2 that price.

In your professional opinion being that I'm not selling anything to buy Winblows or the PeeCee Video Card....What options other than spending $450 on a HD 5870 do I have? Does it even have to be ATI? NVIDIA a good option?

Thank you very much for your time.
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 02:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
Not selling my 30" ACD does put a bit of a strain on the wallet.
Granted selling my 30" ACD will net me cash for a Apple 27" LED but then like you mentioned all the hassles with MDP.
How about Dell U2711? It uses the same panel as 27" ACD and is 100$ less. Has two dual-link DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort inputs so it will work with ANY GPU, even with one with Mini DisplayPort.

Quote:
You seem to be an expert and know allot. What PeeCee Video card would you recommend (giving the games I mentioned above) that would be the next tier down from the HD 5870?
ATI 5850 is a good card as well, goes for around 270$. Here are some WoW benchmarks, all maxed out at 2560x1600 and you still get 60FPS, that should be sufficient NVIDIA GTX 460 is also a good card for ~200$ but ATI 5850 is better. Other GPUs from NVIDIA aren't that great IMO, their Fermi lineup wasn't that successful
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Old Sep 8, 2010, 03:27 PM   #14
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How about Dell U2711? It uses the same panel as 27" ACD and is 100$ less. Has two dual-link DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort inputs so it will work with ANY GPU, even with one with Mini DisplayPort.
Looks like that Monitor is MORE than Apple ($1,099)...
http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/p...19&sku=U27113Y

I will check out the HD 5850 tonight

Thanks!
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Old Sep 9, 2010, 08:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
Looks like that Monitor is MORE than Apple ($1,099)...
http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/p...19&sku=U27113Y

I will check out the HD 5850 tonight

Thanks!
I'm sure it was 899$ yesterday, weird Anyway, 100$ this or that way shouldn't be a big deal, especially if it gives you more inputs. Some resellers have that for less too
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Old Sep 9, 2010, 01:08 PM   #16
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I'm sure it was 899$ yesterday, weird Anyway, 100$ this or that way shouldn't be a big deal, especially if it gives you more inputs. Some resellers have that for less too
True! The inputs alone seem worth it - although the "pretty" factor is all but dead with all the black plastic

Last night I found a copy of Windows XP Pro OEM!
Should I use that or Spring for Windows 7?

Do games play better on one OS vs the other?
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Old Sep 9, 2010, 01:14 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
True! The inputs alone seem worth it - although the "pretty" factor is all but dead with all the black plastic

Last night I found a copy of Windows XP Pro OEM!
Should I use that or Spring for Windows 7?

Do games play better on one OS vs the other?
You are going to use Boot Camp so just get Windows 7. For VM XP is still decent as it takes less space and is smaller but seeing that your machine definitely has the horse power, Windows 7 is worth it. It's the best OS from Windows so far and it will be supported for longer than XP. Not sure about how games run but drivers should be better for 7 as it's the main OS now
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Old Sep 9, 2010, 07:47 PM   #18
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I'm sure it was 899$ yesterday, weird Anyway, 100$ this or that way shouldn't be a big deal, especially if it gives you more inputs. Some resellers have that for less too
It was on sale yesterday. I was about to pull the trigger on one but missed out.

-Brad
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Old Sep 9, 2010, 09:22 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by jcaraballo70 View Post
True! The inputs alone seem worth it - although the "pretty" factor is all but dead with all the black plastic

Last night I found a copy of Windows XP Pro OEM!
Should I use that or Spring for Windows 7?

Do games play better on one OS vs the other?
Old games run better in XP such as Knights of the Old Republic, though modern video cards can be problematic. Newer games get DirectX 10 and 11 support in Windows 7 so some effects don't show up in XP. As far as playability is concerned I saw no noticeable difference in frame rates at the same settings when I moved from XP Pro to the Win 7 RC on my gaming rig when I had an ATI Radeon HD 3850. Nor was there any slow down when I switched from the Win 7 RC to Win 7 Business with a Radeon HD 4850.

I would definitely choose Windows 7 over XP for gaming.
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Old Sep 14, 2010, 11:09 AM   #20
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Update:

This is a little update on the Power of Boot Camp and Gaming!

All I did this weekend was install Windows 7 via Boot Camp.
I still have the junky OEM ATI X1600 256MB Video Card.

Loaded the ATI Catalyst Windows 7 Drivers for the X1600.

Installed World of Warcraft.

Before using WoW in Windows 7 via Boot Camp - I would get a Max of 22FPS Average just walking around in Dalaran.

Now in Boot Camp - Dalaran had a FPS of 52!!
I then went to the Video settings and changed to match the Rez of my 30" ACD - so my surprise I was still around 40FPS!!

Now this is with a junk old ass OEM X1600 Video Card.

I would imagine that ANYTHING ATI has to offer today will blow my mind.
Even my X1600 is playable. I'm guessing that a HD 5770 will be just fine

By the way, dropping my Rez to 1600x got me 80FPS walking around in Dalaran!
I never saw those numbers EVER in Mac OS X - even when I lowered the Rez the most I ever saw @1600X in Mac OS X was 30.
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Old Jan 23, 2012, 07:38 PM   #21
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I need reemplace my gt 8800 on my mac pro 08 3,1 beacuse is dead, I dont care about games, i just want use my computer, which one I need buy for reemplace? the most cheap! is?

this http://www.amazon.com/Apple-ATI-Radeon-5770-MC742ZM/dp/B003Z6QH6M/ref=sr_1_7?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1327368749&sr=1-7

???????? any other more cheap?
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Old Jan 23, 2012, 08:35 PM   #22
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30" !!

If you are in the market for a 30" display check out the new Hazro 30".

http://Overclockers.co.uk/

I think these boys have the first lot out.

10bit, Billions of colours - looks good 750
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Old Jan 23, 2012, 08:38 PM   #23
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If you are in the market for a 30" display check out the new Hazro 30".

http://Overclockers.co.uk/

I think these boys have the first lot out.

10bit, Billions of colours - looks good 750
thanks but no, my monitor is 23 inch, I need the most cheap display that I can buy, I go to sell this macpro (i think) so I want sell fully working
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 03:17 AM   #24
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Information still valid?

I have been out of the loop running around other countries playing Army, and am just now looking at updating my MacPro hardware, I have a MacPro 4.1. (2010)

How valid is this information in the thread here?

Also, what is the difference between using the PC version of the 5870 and the Apple "Upgrade kit" for the 5870?

Are their drivers for the Mac to utilize the 5870 yet?

Was looking around, and it appears the update kit for the mac is two cards, where as the PC one looks to be an internal double stackd (tall) card...

Or, am i so out of the loop that the 5870 is no longer even worth updated to and i should be looking elswhere or holding off for some bigger and better?
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 11:34 PM   #25
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I have been out of the loop running around other countries playing Army, and am just now looking at updating my MacPro hardware, I have a MacPro 4.1. (2010)

How valid is this information in the thread here?

Also, what is the difference between using the PC version of the 5870 and the Apple "Upgrade kit" for the 5870?

Are their drivers for the Mac to utilize the 5870 yet?

Was looking around, and it appears the update kit for the mac is two cards, where as the PC one looks to be an internal double stackd (tall) card...

Or, am i so out of the loop that the 5870 is no longer even worth updated to and i should be looking elswhere or holding off for some bigger and better?
Those cards are all pretty old now. You should be able the put a GeForce GTX 660 TI or better in their now. The Netkas.org site doesn't seem to be working at the moment. But you'd find info there on putting it in.

I don't think the GTX 680 will fit in there. As Netkas isn't working for me at the moment I can't confirm.

The only real annoyance with PC Cards is no screen while booting.
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