Nvidis 8800 in Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by malfunction99, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. malfunction99 macrumors newbie

    Oct 2, 2006
    Hi All,

    This is perhaps a lttle off-topic, but I'm about to buy a mac pro and would like to turn it into a Windows gaming monster as well as have all the normal osx/mac benefits.

    I'd like to put in an Nvidia 8800 as my "win gaming" video card - in addition to the standard card.

    I realise that the Nvidia card won't be seen by osx - but that's not the point.

    The question is: will windows xp and/or Vista recognise the Nvidia card, and allow me to use "it" rather than the standard card? If the card in question was a cheapie, I'd just bite the bullet, buy one and try it. The 8800's though, are not cheap.

    Any help would be greatley appreciated.
  2. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2006
    London Town
    Something tells me this wouldn't work. The Mac Pro doesn't have enough of the right type of PCI-e ports, does it?
  3. Mackilroy macrumors 68040


    Jun 29, 2006
    The 8800 only needs one slot, and the Mac Pro has one. You can't run two, but one, sure.
  4. The General macrumors 601

    Jul 7, 2006
    Last I heard, the Mac Pro has 4 16x PCI-e slots.

    How else would they make "4 x 7300GT" an option? :rolleyes:

    You won't get SLI, though.
  5. slicedbread macrumors regular

    Nov 5, 2006
    AFAIK a mac pro won't boot with a 8800 card in, or any thats not provided by apple.

    Something to do with the EFI not proceeding to boot cards without certain apple approved firmwares on.
  6. TBi macrumors 68030


    Jul 26, 2005
    It should boot. You just won't see the boot screen, or any screen for that matter until windows boots up and installs a driver.
  7. pengu macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2005
    Diddily Daddily...
    the MacPro has 4 PCI-E slots that "mechanically" support 16x, and the bandwidth allowed to each slot can can be changed.

    I haven't found any doco on what the maximum bandwidth allowed is (presumably there is at least enough for one 16x and 3 1x slots) but one would like to think there is enough for at 16x on one and 4x or 8x on the other three.

    anyone got a macpro and care to open the PCIE bandwidth utility to give some info on this?
  8. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2006
    London Town
    I can't believe nobodies ever tried what the OP suggested. Given everyones always moaning about inability to play games on Macs, I woulda thought this would be a great solution (if it works).
  9. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2006
    London Town
    BTW, the OP might want to look at this thread: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=250851

    I think after the five pages, the conclusion was that the only way you can have different video cards for different operating systems is by manually replacing the 8800 with the 7300 every time you want to go from Windows to OSX. Which is a hassle and pretty pointless.
  10. bubez macrumors member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Trieste, Italy
    I have the Mac Pro.
    It has 4 PCIe slots, all mechanically compatible with x16
    However this doesn't mean that each slot has x16 bandwidth. It's configurable as:
    x16 x1 x1 x8 (useful for 2 graphics cards)
    x16 x1 x4 x4
    x8 x8 x1 x8
    x8 x8 x4 x4

    You can use what kind of video card you want but:
    If it hasn't the EFI (Apple cards have a 128k rom for EFI and BIOS) you won't be able to see the boot graphics (os selector included).
    If you are luck, maybe with the Titan kext even Mac OS X recognizes your card and you can use it as it would be an Apple one.
    If you aren't luck you'll got a kernel panic if you have mounted an unsupported card such as the 7950gx2 (I had that and I know...) even if the monitor is connected to the stock 7300 gt.
    In windows the card work good as usual (I don't reccomend you Vista cause it's very resource-eater and games runs bad)

    If you are planning, as me, to buy a 8800, or a 8900, or what will be the next, MAYBE with some driver hack it will be supported by Mac OS X, because there are rumors that Apple will introduce at NAB a Quadro FX 5600 / 4600 that is very similiar to G80 chip...

    so cross your fingers


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