2011 iMac Graphics Card Upgrade

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FlorisVN

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2013
770
270
Hey guys!
iMac 2011 21.5-inch user here. I plan on upgrading to k2000m, will I be able to run 3840x2160 resolution on external display?

Thank you!
It looks like the K2000m does support 4K/60 but i'm not sure if that is supported an external display with the iMac.
Maybe some user here with this setup can give this info...
[doublepost=1566032250][/doublepost]
Thank you. I bring the card to work with Ubuntu Linux (Unpluged SSD and booting form live DVD).
OSX from my SSD (high sierra preinstalled) don't show anything. Sometimes i've got a bing noise at any key when i try to make a blindfold login. The volume buttons works. Maybe it is my FileVault Drive?

The "Dell GTX 860M 4 GB BIOS" from techpowerup.com has the same VBIOS Version: 80.04.E9.00.03 like the Clevo and the nvflash compare is identical. So i don't think that flashing will help.

I've made a patched Mojave installation on a usb-drive, unplugged the other drives and the iMac started, but only showed the screen on a external display. On booth TB-Ports. This means, that it is the wrong vBios? Ubuntu from DVD could light the iMac Screen up.
I would say just flash it with the Dell/Alien ware vbios, it gives much better chance of working !
just try it I would say...

your Clevo vbios is just not supported.
 

evasketch

macrumors newbie
Aug 16, 2019
2
0
It looks like the K2000m does support 4K/60 but i'm not sure if that is supported an external display with the iMac.
Maybe some user here with this setup can give this info...
I wonder if it's even a case to have 4K via displayport on this iMac, I read the specifications and it's said the displayport version is 1.1, which might not support 4K at all.
 

OverSu

macrumors newbie
Aug 17, 2019
1
0
Does anyone had tried this one on 2010 mid iMac 27?

GTX780M



MXM 3.0 Type B

Chipset



N14-GTX-A2

I had replaced it today, and after double check thé iMac boot correctly but without the screen on. Any idea ?
 

dondrapersf

macrumors newbie
Jul 20, 2019
13
1
Hi, my 27" iMac from 2011 don't work anymore and after three times baking my graphic card, i think it is time for an upgrade.
Is there a way to see if i will buy the right card? I see used cards for "clevo alienware". Should anyone work or must it be definitely a "DELL Alienware" without "clevo" Version?

And i read many sites here. But i'm asking me, what is the best solution.
First i want a GTX765m, because it is cheap and i think it don't get so hot. Now i see a GTX860m for a good price. It would be faster, but would it be to hot for the small iMac case? Or will it run fine for a longer time without burning anything away? I don't want to play games with the iMac. Only Lightroom, Photoshop, a little bit Cinema 4d.

Should this GTX860m work? Thank you all and sorry for my english. I'm from Germany.
I can confirm that GTX860m works for me. I have installed in on my imac 27 2011. It will get hot but that is the case with any higher performance card. Just run the fan's a little faster. Performance is very good for me
 

Ove K

macrumors newbie
Aug 12, 2019
5
0
I can confirm that GTX860m works for me. I have installed in on my imac 27 2011. It will get hot but that is the case with any higher performance card. Just run the fan's a little faster. Performance is very good for me
Thank you for the input. I flashed the right vBios under Linux and it worked now. What are your settings?
I think about to underclocking the card a little bit with the "Kepler Bios Tweaker". So maybe it goes not so hot. I don't need the full power for games. Only Photoshop, Lightroom and Internet. I think that i don't need the full power every time and will bring the clock rate a little bit lower. Crazy, right? The most people want to overlocking the cards. But i think it will be fast enough. Still better than the old 6970.
 

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JessieComputes

macrumors newbie
Sep 11, 2016
27
7
@ericthetrip: It is possible to connect an egpu to an old iMac, either with thunderbolt (which is expensive) or through the wifi pcie port, using for example a GDC EXP device. The egpu will only drive an external monitor. There is a separate thread on this site that discusses this. With Mojave, graphics on the external monitor will be accelerated, but there are still issues.
 
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dondrapersf

macrumors newbie
Jul 20, 2019
13
1
Thank you for the input. I flashed the right vBios under Linux and it worked now. What are your settings?
I think about to underclocking the card a little bit with the "Kepler Bios Tweaker". So maybe it goes not so hot. I don't need the full power for games. Only Photoshop, Lightroom and Internet. I think that i don't need the full power every time and will bring the clock rate a little bit lower. Crazy, right? The most people want to overlocking the cards. But i think it will be fast enough. Still better than the old 6970.
Sorry I have no idea about over clocking
 

FlorisVN

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2013
770
270
Thank you for the input. I flashed the right vBios under Linux and it worked now. What are your settings?
I think about to underclocking the card a little bit with the "Kepler Bios Tweaker". So maybe it goes not so hot. I don't need the full power for games. Only Photoshop, Lightroom and Internet. I think that i don't need the full power every time and will bring the clock rate a little bit lower. Crazy, right? The most people want to overlocking the cards. But i think it will be fast enough. Still better than the old 6970.
Great maybe you can share your linux flashing methode here.. ?
Would be great info out there.. ;)

You have used a linux life dvd, and an external monitor.. ?
 
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kilianrmh

macrumors newbie
Jul 29, 2019
9
4
Austria
I ordered a AC wifi + bt4 solution from taobao: https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.1-c.w4004-660199089.9.409e5ac5zQu37p&id=40307425283

It works fine, plug & play. Since i purchased this for a 2010 iMac, i opted for the two antenna version(BCM94360CS2). It works plug & play, and you can connect the bluetooth cable directly into the daughterboard, so you don't need to do any soldering, wire cutting. Both Wifi and BT4 works, however i'm not sure how to enable continuity. I downloaded the continuity activation tool, but it just says that its already active. But i don't see any difference sadly. I didn't connected the antennas yet, because i will take this machine apart again and its a very fragile connector... but even without the antenna connected, i still got 40-50mbps.
I recently started reading about this topic and I may have an answer: In System Profiler, the tab „Bluetooth“ includes a list with all features currently supported by your AirPort Card (Low Energy Bluetooth, Continuity, Handoff and the „new“ AirDrop). Maybe have a look there. Furthermore I think you have to manually enable the Continuity Support in the System Preferences panel, but I‘m not sure about that.

In a german forum I read about a Broadcom BCM94360CD Airport Extreme Card working in a 2011 27“ iMac with the use of an Adapter Card, according to a few people who tried this, this setup is working well with the iMac. Handoff, Continuity and iOS to macOS AirDrop is working perfectly fine and since the Logic Boards in the 2010 and 2011 iMacs are almost the same it might works for your 2010 iMac too. I‘m going to order one of these cards as soon as my 770M arrives and I‘m gonna report back the results.
 
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Roman78

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2018
298
86
Eifel - Germany
@passatgt sorry for the delay.

So i did some Geekbench tests and i have odd phenomenon.

First of all the CPU benchmark https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/cpu/14343554

But than the GPU Benchmark using the K1100M and High Sierra: https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/compute/4451440

I thought this is strange and did a test with El Capitan: https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/compute/4451484

So under High Seria i get 0 Points. But a higher Frequency of 810Mhz. The "Depth of Field" somehow failed on High Sierra, but almost all the other tests have higher results compared to El Capitan.

Oh, and i had some problems running the card under Sierra, maybe something went wrong with the installation, i did not tried further and installed High Sierra directly.
 

passatgt

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2011
298
132
@passatgt sorry for the delay.

So i did some Geekbench tests and i have odd phenomenon.

First of all the CPU benchmark https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/cpu/14343554

But than the GPU Benchmark using the K1100M and High Sierra: https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/compute/4451440

I thought this is strange and did a test with El Capitan: https://browser.geekbench.com/v4/compute/4451484

So under High Seria i get 0 Points. But a higher Frequency of 810Mhz. The "Depth of Field" somehow failed on High Sierra, but almost all the other tests have higher results compared to El Capitan.

Oh, and i had some problems running the card under Sierra, maybe something went wrong with the installation, i did not tried further and installed High Sierra directly.
Thanks! Looks like you have decent scores(excepth depth of field). I think this card is not compatible with a 2010 iMac. But i will do some further tests, different OS, firmware.
 

passatgt

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2011
298
132
According to this post it should work in a 2010: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/2011-imac-graphics-card-upgrade.1596614/page-100#post-27622915

I just tested the K1100M on Mojave, also 0 Points.
Thats my post :) But as you can see even though the geekbench 0 points, you can compare the other data and its very low compared to your scores with the same card under an imac 2011.

| Test | iMac 2010 | iMac 2011 |
| Sobel | 5943 | 26873 |
| Histogram Equalization | 2467 | 11274 |
| SFFT | 890 | 3802 |
| Gaussian Blur | 3661 | 15783 |
| Face Detection | 740 | 3744 |
| RAW | 9966 | 51128 |
| Particle Physics | 606 | 3153 |

I wanted to try to original ati gpu, but the opencl option is not visible in geekbench with that card. But i will try Valley to benchmark and see what score i got. Maybe its a bottleneck either by the CPU or the motherboard.
 
Last edited:

FlorisVN

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2013
770
270

Roman78

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2018
298
86
Eifel - Germany
Thats my post :) But as you can see even though the geekbench 0 points, you can compare the other data and its very low compared to your scores with the same card under an imac 2011.

| Test | iMac 2010 | iMac 2011 |
| Sobel | 5943 | 26873 |
| Histogram Equalization | 2467 | 11274 |
| SFFT | 890 | 3802 |
| Gaussian Blur | 3661 | 15783 |
| Face Detection | 740 | 3744 |
| RAW | 9966 | 51128 |
| Particle Physics | 606 | 3153 |

I wanted to try to original ati gpu, but the opencl option is not visible in geekbench with that card. But i will try Valley to benchmark and see what score i got. Maybe its a bottleneck either by the CPU or the motherboard.
NeEd MoRe CoFfEe.... :oops:

You could try an older version of Geekbench. I don't have any 2010 iMacs here to make a cross test.
 

passatgt

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2011
298
132
Ok, so i did some testing again and i have bad news... I have pretty much the same score in Valley with a 2gb k1100m as i have with the original hd4670 256mb... See the scores:

Screenshot 2019-08-20 at 16.49.39.png


On Mojave, Valley recognized the card as a 2gb, but the score is the same as on High Sierra, where it was recognized as a 256mb card.

So i think even though it works with a 2010 21.5 iMac, its not worth bothering with it because you won't get any performance benefits at all.

I was expecting to double the score, based on userbenchmark: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-Quadro-K1100M-vs-ATI-Radeon-HD-4670/m10244vsm8077
 

FlorisVN

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2013
770
270
Ok, so i did some testing again and i have bad news... I have pretty much the same score in Valley with a 2gb k1100m as i have with the original hd4670 256mb... See the scores:

View attachment 853867

On Mojave, Valley recognized the card as a 2gb, but the score is the same as on High Sierra, where it was recognized as a 256mb card.

So i think even though it works with a 2010 21.5 iMac, its not worth bothering with it because you won't get any performance benefits at all.

I was expecting to double the score, based on userbenchmark: https://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-Quadro-K1100M-vs-ATI-Radeon-HD-4670/m10244vsm8077
Maybe there is a power problem here, snd the Quadro k1100m slows down here due to power throttheling.

I dont know how much the original cards draws vs the quadro k1100m ?
Maybe this is the problem..

Also have you also tried with nvidis web drivers vs stock apple kepler drivers.. ?

Showing up as 256mb is not good at anyway I think.
This should show 2GB in my opinion..
 

passatgt

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2011
298
132
Maybe there is a power problem here, snd the Quadro k1100m slows down here due to power throttheling.

I dont know how much the original cards draws vs the quadro k1100m ?
Maybe this is the problem..

Also have you also tried with nvidis web drivers vs stock apple kepler drivers.. ?

Showing up as 256mb is not good at anyway I think.
This should show 2GB in my opinion..
It shows up as a 2gb card in the system profile, but 256mb on High Sierra in Valley. Shows 2gb in Mojave, see the 3rd screenshot, but the score is the same. I'll try with nvidia drivers both on HS and Mojave, but i don't think it will make any difference. I'll try Catalina too, maybe it has better drivers or something.

I'll try with the old CPU too, because that uses a bit less power. But i don't even have the screen connected, that would use quite a lot of power, so i don't think its a throttling issue.
 

Roman78

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2018
298
86
Eifel - Germany
It shows up as a 2gb card in the system profile, but 256mb on High Sierra in Valley. Shows 2gb in Mojave, see the 3rd screenshot, but the score is the same. I'll try with nvidia drivers both on HS and Mojave, but i don't think it will make any difference. I'll try Catalina too, maybe it has better drivers or something.

I'll try with the old CPU too, because that uses a bit less power. But i don't even have the screen connected, that would use quite a lot of power, so i don't think its a throttling issue.

What were your settings on Valley? I could make a test with mine.
 

Roman78

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2018
298
86
Eifel - Germany
Just did a test with my 2011 iMac and the original HD6970M 2GB. And i must say, i am impressed about that card. Still have to test the GTX 765M, and maybe my W10 Game PC.

Bildschirmfoto 2019-08-20 um 19.46.29.png
 
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