Multiple video cards in PowerMac?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Mhaddy, Oct 27, 2006.

  1. macrumors 6502


    Right now I've got a dual-DVI PCI-X card that runs two LCD screens on my PowerMac (the 256MB variant that shipped with the 2.0 DC). However, I just recently purchased a 37" LG LCD to replace my aging tube TV and I'd like to output my Mac to the LG to watch movies, etc. And at the moment, I have to unplug one of my smaller LCD's and run a cable to the LG... it works, it's just annoying.

    Can I add another video card to run the LG and if so, what card? Can I have the output on my LG mirror what's on one of the smaller LCD's instead of extending my desktop?
  2. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    If your Mac is dual core, your main video card is a PCIe (PCI Express) card, not PCI-X. You can yet yourself a GeForce 6600GT from the Apple Store which will give you two more DVI ports.
  3. macrumors 6502


    Sorry, I meant PCIe (darn acronyms!). Is the 6600GT from the Apple Store different from the one that I could buy from my local PC shop? For example this one (even though it only has one DVI).

    And can I get something cheaper (any ol' video card will do) -- I don't need a big horsepower GPU because I won't be using that video card for gaming.
  4. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but...

    Getting a video card for a PCIe G5 is a pain in the butt. The 6600GT card at the Apple store is the ONLY card you can get - the 7800GT and Quadro could be ordered with a new G5 but were never sold retail. Getting one of those cards means paying MSRP for a replacement part from a licensed Apple service center - very expensive.

    It is possible to buy a PC video card, but it must be "flashed" over to the Mac first. Only the 6600 and 7800 series cards have been done for PCIe Macs, and it is a process that involves soldering, a working PC, and risk...not a task for everyone.

    So you're pretty much stuck with the 6600GT...until Apple stops selling it and then there will be no options at all for PCIe G5 owners. :(
  5. macrumors 6502


    That is utterly ridiculous.
  6. macrumors G4

    Lord Blackadder

    There is a possibility that a retail card will be available for the dual core G5s at some point, but so far there have been nothing but rumors. ATI showed a prototype X1800XT about a year ago but it never made it to market, probably because of the Mac Pro and its X1900XT.

    It's a real shame that Apple left people out in the cold on this - they probably decided to focus efforts on the Intel transition but it screwed people who bought the last-gen G5. Some people actually ditched their dual core PCIe Macs and got the dual 2.7 (the last AGP Power Mac), since it is easy to get a nice video card (6800 Ultra, X800XT, X850XT, 6800GT) for one of them. However they only have one AGP slot, so you are limited to one AGP card and then a PCI Radeon 9200 for additional displays. Alternately you can trade in your G5 and order a Mac Pro with the X1900XT, which is an amazing performer, and buy a 7300GT as a second card - this will give you 4 display outputs.

    Otherwise, like I said before, you can only get a 6600GT.
  7. macrumors newbie

    G5 2.3 Dual Graphic Card Monitor Question-How?

    Just pulled nVidia 6800 to install a Radeon x1900.

    The X1900 is in the PCIx (Express) 16x slot, the first one, (the lowest slot) with the power cable plugged in, and everything works, running two monitors.

    How can I use the nVidia 6800? Can I, to run a third monitor? I think it was plugged into the bottom slot (The 16x slot like the x1900 is currently.)

    I have plugged it into the 8x slot, but nothing happened when I connected the monitor.

    Running Tiger but upgrading to Leopard soon.



    And if clarification is needed, please ask.


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