Nvidia 7950GTX in Macpro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Emrtr4, Aug 9, 2006.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    #1
    Considering that the Macpros PCI E16 slot is double wide (thank you apple) I was wondering if anyone yet knows if it is possible just to add a double wide PC graphics card?

    Also, would any OCZ ECC 667 Ram work?
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    kevin.rivers

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    #2
    No word on 3rd party graphics yet.

    OCZ ECC would not work unless it is Fully Buffered or an FB-DIMM. On Newegg on Kingston and Crucial have them.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    #3
    Thanks for the reply on the memory.

    Newegg is the best, Newegg+Mac is even better.
     
  4. macrumors 601

    mjstew33

    Joined:
    May 29, 2005
    Location:
    Illinois
    #4
    It would probably work, but, drivers? Not sure...
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    Josias

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #5
    Some people that have ordered MacPro's have 6600's and 7800's lying around, and are willing to try 'em out. My guess is that it will work, but I just gotta ask, is the 7950GTX superior to the X1900 or the Quadro FX4500?
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    kevin.rivers

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    #6
    The Quadro isn't in the same league as the 7950GTX and the X1900XT. So it cannot be compared realistically.

    And I think the X1900 is superior to the 7950GTX
     
  7. macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #7
    The 7950 is like two video cards on 1 card. Im sure Apple has em wide for future stuff like the 7950 and the higher power/heat cards to come.
     
  8. macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #8
    Im talking about the 7950 GX2 by the way which is two GPU's on 1 card. The X1900 isnt faster then a 7950 GX2 according to PC gamer but you are comparing two 7900s in sli on 1 card vs 1 Ati. I find a lot of this funny considering monitors are only drawing at 70-80 FPS and anything higher is waste of power.
     
  9. macrumors regular

    michaeldmartin

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    Location:
    Testicles. That is all.
    #9
    HAHHAHAHAHHAHA!
    You're kidding right? NO!
    The x1900 is NOWHERE NEAR as good as the 7950GTX

    In fact, the 7950GTX is the best consumer card IN THE WORLD.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    kevin.rivers

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    #10
    Hence I said: "I think". So save the drama. Most people favor the X1900XT over the 7950GTX.
     
  11. macrumors 68000

    Josias

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #11
    kevin.rivers, what do you mean the nVidia Quadro FX4500 512 MB GDDR3 isn't "in the same league" as other high-end nVidia and ATI cards? According to Applr's test, the Quadro is better than the X1900. I wouldn't know about the X1900XT or the 7950 GX2, but please enlighten me.

    BTW, michealdmartin, no reason to troll by laughing at other members. he just though ATI's high end card was better than nVidia's hi-end card. I thought that too.
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    kevin.rivers

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    #12
    The FX4500 is a card for 3D graphics people. Hence it is a $1300 upgrade over the X1900XT.

    That is why it is not in the same league. Would you pay $1300 for 4-10 more FPS? Would a 3D guy running Maya pay $1300 for 60 FPS real time rendering as opposed to the maybe 10 FPS you would get on a X1900XT or 7950GTX? Heck yeah they would.

    So no, they are not in the same league. Sure the Quadro has great gaming performance but its uses are very different from comsumer cards.
     
  13. macrumors 68000

    Shadow

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Location:
    Keele, United Kingdom
  14. macrumors 68000

    Josias

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    #14
    I see the Quadro X4500 X2 has an option for 8 Duallink DVI ports, and also a lot of other craziness. Are you trying to say this is better than X1900XT and 7950 GX2?
     
  15. macrumors 68000

    Shadow

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Location:
    Keele, United Kingdom
    #15
    Whatever gave you that idea :D?


    ;)
     
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    PC graphics cards are set up to use a standard BIOS.
    Mac Pro graphics cards are set up to use EFI.

    Unless you can find some EFI firmware for your PC graphics card, it's not going to work.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    topgunn

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2004
    Location:
    Texas
    #17
    BINGO!
     
  18. macrumors 68030

    BlizzardBomb

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2005
    Location:
    England
    #18
    Wow, I thought most people knew that nVidia made the fastest cards in the industry :)

    The 7950 GX2 has everything splattered especially when you pump up the resolution and throw some AA in.
     
  19. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #19
    Someone posted earlier (can't remember where now) that most current-generation graphics cards already support EFI. That makes sense, especially since the stock 7300GT in the Mac Pro works with unmodified Windows ForceWare drivers.

    Edit: I should note that I'm talking about getting a PC graphics card to work in Boot Camp. Getting Apple drivers for a card such as the 7900, which has never been in a Mac, will be another story. If it's not working now, I wouldn't expect it to take too long for someone to work something out, though.
     
  20. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    #20
    just a thought....

    Being a gamer, and knowing where alot of you are coming from. I know the thought of droping an SLi into my new Mac Pro definetly have crossed my mind many times.

    Now, as a disclaimer, Ive never worked with an Intel Mac. But Ive read alot about it, and been following Intel Macs since the MBP was announced. After I saw them announced, I knew I wanted to go ahead and order which ever tower eventualy came out with an Intel chip. That being said, I put my order in this last monday, and have been scouring the forums on more information on the limits of these machines since then.
    One of the reasons I desided on this computer, was for games. Thats definetly not the only reason tho, but that being said, I knew I wanted to tune up this computer as much as possible for the games.
    Im figuring (as alot of people are) that the use of the 7950 (or other SLi on a single card, boards) is probably dependant on the drives.
    We might get drivers, we might not. Who knows.
    We know that we DO have a 16x lane to work with, along with other lanes that are decently fast.

    And knowing all this, I was kinda suprised that no one bought up the idea of dropping a 7950 into the Mac Pro with the intention of ONLY having it run under windows.
    At this point, I see Mac Pro users not having drivers, or any other hacks avaible, a worst case scenario.
    But if this did happen, why not just pop that 7950 into the 16x lane slot anyway, and then also have a 7300 in one of your 8x lanes (or even 4x).
    While I havent messed around with modern macintosh intel hardware, im sure theres a way (and probably even an easy way) to put in that 7950, and then just disable it in the hardware profiles, so that it doesnt run while the computer is running as a Mac (you would be using the 7300 to display the mac stuff), but then dual boot into Windows in order to use your 7950. While in windows, just install the normal drivers for the 7950
    Asuming plugging a "Non-Apple" video card into the Mac Pro, doesnt fry the thing, I dont see how it couldnt hurt it.
    Sure, you would have to switch your monitor cable every time you wanted to do your PC Gaming (is there a DVI monitor switcher?)
    But having a definet way to run SLi inside your mac, with only a few minor inconvinences beats the hell out of not having it at all.

    So yeah? Is this technicaly workable, or??
     
  21. macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #21
    The PCI Express Lanes require configuration...

    Using the Configuration Expansion Slot Utility, the bandwidth of the four PCI Express slots can be reconfigured as shown in Table 1.

    The Configuration Expansion Slot Utility is located on your Mac Pro at: /System/Library/CoreServices/.

    Code:
    Table 1 Configurable PCI Express Bandwidth
    [b]The Mac Pro has 16 PCI Express lanes from the North Bridge and 12 PCI Express lanes from the South Bridge[/b]
    
    PCI Express Slot	Default Configuration	Alternate Configurations
    
    1			x16, NB			x16, NB		x8, NB		x8, NB
    2			x1, SB			x1, SB		x8, NB		x8, NB
    3			x4, SB			x1, SB		x1, SB		x4, SB
    4			x4, SB			x8, SB		x8, SB		x4, SB
    But remember you CANNOT have a bunch of high power cards in the machine ...
     
  22. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 26, 2006
    #22
    Wow, that's a long post, i'm trying to understand most of it. The thing is the Mac Pro chipset is not SLI compatibale (Intel 5000x i believe). So you cannot have an SLI or Crossfire setup in the Mac Pro
     
  23. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    #23
    thats the thing tho, this isnt a normal SLI setup. Its a 7950, which is basicly 2 GPUs on one 16x PCI-E Card. (the one we've been talking about this whole time)

    Thing is tho, we know this chipset doesnt support SLI in the typical sense. It does support this card, since the whole SLI thing is self-contained on the card. So while its not "True" SLI, its still a form of SLI that would work on the mac.

    Here, let me explain it this way.

    Buy a Mac, keep the 7300 in there, then go out and buy a 7950 and stick that into the 16x lane, and then move the 7300 into either a 4x lane, or an 8x lane (if your not gunna add anything else, you should configure it for the 16x,8x,1x,1x to keep the most bandwith for that card)
    Lets say, they dont release the drivers for the 7950 for the Mac, thats okay if all we were really going to do with it is play games as a windows machine.
    Because we can (I think) "disable" that 7950 on your Mac, so you will never even bother with it, and then use that 7300 as your primary card while using the computer as the mac.
    But then when you dualboot into Windows, You can disable the 7300 (or keep it if you like, doesnt matter) but then have the 7950 active there.
    And from there, since its a standard PC card, and the whole computer is basicly acting as a standard PC, you can install the normal 7950 drivers for it, and that way, you could esentialy get a form of SLI running on your Mac Pro (as long as your in XP SP2).
     
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #24
    Is there PCI devices that use 4X PCI slots other than graphics cards?
    not really sure but ive always thought 1X PCI slots are normal or like soundcards or liek USB2 cards and stuff liek that??

    i am planning to get the 7950 GX2 for my Mac Pro and like mentioned above
    i am thinking IF OSX doesnt' support the card.. then my last resort is using bootcamp to use the 7950 GX2 in windows and use 7300 for OSX

    althought hopefully it will work and Nvidia says 7950 GX2 supports OSX
    but not sure until someone tries it out
     
  25. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 26, 2006
    #25
    I'm not an expert, but i don't see why that wouldn't work if the card works with an EFI computer.
     

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