nVidia SLI possibly in line for future Mac Pros?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Spanky Deluxe, Jul 28, 2006.

  1. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #1
    After reading this piece of news I couldn't help but think that SLI action could very well be set for the mac pro's future. Not in the first Intel macs but later on it could very well be a possibility. Apple were never going to use nVidia chipsets but if the Intel chipsets can support SLI then why not? At the very least gamers would be able to make use of this in BootCamp.

    Actually, thinking about it, if the Powermacs carry on they're line of full sized PCIe slots, even the first of the Mac Pros might be able to support SLI with a future firmware update.

    What do you think? I know most people won't care but there are some that surely would, especially if they can afford a Mac Pro + 30" ACD and enjoy a spot of Half Life.
     
  2. Spanky Deluxe thread starter macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #2
    Ok, I know again most people won't care, I just thought I'd update this thread with the news that [ulr=http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/2006/08/04/merom_to_support_sli/]Merom-based notebooks are to support Nvidia SLI[/url].

    Although I doubt the next generation of MacBook Pros will have dual graphics cards this is clearly a sign that the SLI support I mentioned before in Intel chipset platforms is arriving earlier than I would have expected, in the next generation of chipsets. Whether this will be extended to the desktop chipsets I don't know yet although this is a good sign.

    Like I said before, I doubt that many people would be interested in this on here although I'm sure Apple must be. 3D modellers, scientists and gamers would all be interested and what with AMD's purchase of ATI I'm sure nVidia will want to get in on the Intel/Apple ball game as soon as possible which includes offering SLI support. I'm sure Apple realise that there are those gamers out there that would buy an Apple Mac Pro + 30" ACD just in order to run Bootcamp and to play their games in SLI on such a beautiful screen. There are some very rich people in this world after all!
     
  3. bradc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2006
    Location:
    Canader eh
    #3
    Yeah, I could definitely see this happening since ATi has got in bed with AMD, Apple might and hopefully use nVidias robust cars w/ SLi support. Two 7950's in SLi is 2gb of DDR3 RAM and is cheaper than the currentoffering of the QuadroFX. Despite the fact that both setups would run circles around each other in their 'prime' domain, the dual/quad SLi setup could vary well be an option, albeit a super high price:)
     
  4. nutman macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 19, 2006
    #4
    i thought the performance gain with the sli setup wasnt worth the extra cost.

    and its really only a gaming thing.
     
  5. bradc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2006
    Location:
    Canader eh
    #5
    The performance gain with SLi is huge........but is specifically targeted at gamers as you said. If you're not going to be gaming on a 24"-30" monitor at super-hi res, than you really don't need SLi. But like all things, a lot of people currently never reach the performance peak of their CPU.

    Basically, it would just be a 'cool' option.
     
  6. Spanky Deluxe thread starter macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #6
    That's the thing, the Apple 30" Cinema Display is a gamer's dream and would require a high power SLI combo to drive it at the full resolution. I mean what would you rather have, an SLI solution from Dell with a 30" Dell Display or an SLI solution from Apple with a 30" ACD??
    The thing is, Apple don't even have to support it in OS X just yet. The chipset does and that's it. Boot Camp could take care of the rest.
     
  7. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Location:
    Gah! Plymouth
    #7
    Ah i can see the comericial now.

    Quad Powermac now with NVIDIA 7950 SLI 1GB graphics card. However you can't run OS X you can only run Windows. But by golly we have SLI now.


    Only used that card name because that is what my friend and I are getting for the gaming computer
     
  8. bradc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2006
    Location:
    Canader eh
    #8
    Crap, I never thought about OS X's ability or rather inability to work with SLi. I never even thought about that actually. I wonder how much effort would have to go into supporting it?
     
  9. Spanky Deluxe thread starter macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #9
    I doubt it would take nVidia that long to create an SLI enabled driver in OS X. I'll clarify what I was saying about Apple not supporting SLI in OS X to be essential, I meant that if hardware wise it was possible but software wise it wasn't yet then Apple could sell multiple graphics cards in the original configuration but it would be an underground rumour kind of thing. Like when Windows was cracked to work on Intel Macs before Bootcamp, most people knew it was possible already but Apple didn't say anything about it at first. Apple could possibly even say that the new Mac Pros are SLI ready for Leopard or something.
     
  10. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #10
    I would love to see this happening.

    As my "gaming" PC died a couple of months ago, I am in the market for a new one.
    I am specificaly waiting for the Conroe CPU, and an nVidia SLI or ATi Crossfire setup :)

    As the upcoming Mac Pro's will use the Core 2 Duo CPU's (I assume the Conroe for the "lower-end", and a Quad Mac Pro Woodcrest for the "über-Mac), and as Boot Camp is an excellent solution for gaming on Intel Macs, I am deeply considering buying the coming Mac Pro for both my Mac-work and PC-gaming pursposes.
    Rebooting into Windows just to play a game is fine with me.

    But a couple of questions remain...
    - Surround sound on Windows gaming? Will a Sounblaster X-Fi card work?
    - Graphics cards....
    Will Apple deliver the Windows drivers (Boot Camp) of all the grfx cards which are optional?
    I mean if an nVidia 7600-series card will come standard in the Mac Pro Core 2 Duo, then via Boot Camp these drivers will be supplied.
    But what about, say, a Radeon X1900 XT which could be a BTO card. Or maybe even a Retail one.
    Could any PC PCI-E grfx card be installed? Will SLI work? Is it just a hardware thing?

    Hehe... looking forward to finding out.
     

Share This Page