9800GTX and 9800GX2 running on Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by MacVidCards, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. MacVidCards Suspended

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hollywood, CA
    AFter reading about this link:


    I got interested and decided to try it out.

    First I tried with the 9800GTX.

    I had to try several combos before I got it to work. I had a 9800GT in (running a modded 8800GT Mac ROM) and it got KP'd everytime. Next I tried a ATI 3870....also no good. FInally I tried a 7800GTX running the QUadro Mac Pro ROM from Aquamac's site....PAYDIRT !!!

    As described, the screen broke up into sections while booting on the 7800...then I switched the monitor over to the 9800GTX.

    It came up fine but isn't id'd quite right.

    It seems that a G70 based card is needed to make the magic happen....curious.

    In any case, the 9800GTX was id'd correctly by OpenGl Viewer if not by system profiler. Running the Test function gave scores better than a 8800GT but lower than a 9800GT I have running at 700/1100.

    The GX2 was exciting but it is seen as two cards, not one. It's internal SLi via a bridge chip must not be functioning. Also, in WIndows it glows blue when it detects a monitor and it isn't doing that.

    Again the OpenGl scores were a little better than a 8800GT but nothing tremendous.

    I have been trying to write a ROM for these two cards that works in OSX and best I have done is a messy boot screen on the 9800GTX. So, somehow the Mac has been convinced to run these cards via their PC BIOS.....my theory is that all recent cards do this. Seems it would be a simple matter for Apple to make more cards function.

    Wish I had a GTX280 here.........

    Attached Files:

  2. aconu macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008

    I try to install an ASUS 9800GX2 in my Mac Pro 2006 with a legacy Apple 8800GT.
    I've got some troubles :

    - no BootCamp with this card (the mac hang at BIOS loading step)

    - I manage to get it recognized by OS X twice : once with NVkush (256Mo VRAM by GPU) and once with NVinject (512Mo VRAM by GPU) with 8800GT in slot 1 and 9800GX2 in slot 2. But this is not stable, as soon as i try to swap the slot (in order to use the 16x PCI-E lines with the 9800GX2) i've got an kp at GUI load (from NVDAResman.kext). And if i revert the setup, kp happen again, since i remove NVkush or NVinject.

    Did you use an 2006/2007 Mac Pro, or the 2008 version ?
    Do you think slot order is important ?
    Do you think the 7300Gt will be more stable in this setup ?

    Thanks for your help !
  3. MacVidCards thread starter Suspended

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hollywood, CA
    This is strange...did you follow Netkas instructions EXACTLY?

    Card worked EXACTLY as 9800GTX did for him....either one was same for me.

    Mine is a 2006 Quad 2.66

    No, but allowing enough PCIE lane width is.

    Don't have one so I don't know about 7300GT.

    Try setting both lower slots at 8X width....I have been unable to document a speed difference in OSX or Windows between 16X and 8X.

    I have one more difficult day tomorrow but after that I will be able to play with cards again, document how I did it and how it worked.

    BTW...the REAL question is whether the new methods of stitching ROM with EFI will allow GX2 to use BOTH cores at once...as I noted I had 2 @ 9800GX2 show up in OSX...each actually a G92 8800GT in effect...no faster...no advantage.

    Ideally we would AT LEAST get card to work naturally in OSX (without monitor switching) and as it's TRUE self in Windows.

    FYI...I am using Vista Ultimate 64...card runs great there.....fastest on Crysis Benchmark and 3D Mark 06.

    May take time to finalize 4870/4850 stuff so I don't know when focus will be on 9800GX2.

    Keep trying to mimic how Netkas did 9800GTX...that's how I did GX2.
  4. aconu macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    Netkas links to another blog, this is the instructions i followed but with a 8800GT as legacy EFI card, not an 7300GT.

    Ok, good news, so EFI32 is not an issue.

    Ok, i see you use a modded 7800GTX ("Quadro" ROM).

    Ok, i try that.

    I just want a powerfull card for Windows (for games) wich is managed and run silently in OS X (for work). The 9800GX2=2 8800 GT in OS X is not an issue for me. And my Dell 3008FPW has 2 dual-dvi port, so monitor switching is neither an issue

    I continue my experiments, and i think the 8800GT is really a problem. When i install NVkush on a clean system with only the 8800GT in slot 1 (no 9800GX2 installed), first boot is ok (screen rotated 90°, card showed as "Can i have this model" in System Informations). But at next reboot, i've got a KP in NVDAResman.
    This is the first issue.

    The second issue is the 9800GX2 hanging the mac when "Bootcamping".

    Thanks for your help !
  5. aconu macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    After further testing, this is the same issue, and the culprit is...the Apple 8800GT. When i remove it from system, the mac boot fine in bootcamp with the 9800GX2, and the card run great on slot 1 in Vista x64 (SLI activated).

    So, 9800GX2 and 8800GT is a no go, i try to test a 7300GT.
  6. kabunaru Guest

    Jan 28, 2008
    I would rather have an ATI HD 4870 than go through that process.
  7. aconu macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    Too easy, no fun :)

    No, really, with this method you don't need to flash the card.
    BIOS card flashing with Apple EFI firmware is always a random process, you need to take care to size of the ROM chip, design of the card (too recent or non standard design often failed to be flashed)...it can be a very difficult process.
  8. cured.not.dried macrumors member

    Nov 23, 2008
    i'm just stoked that there are so many new GPU alternatives for the mac pro crowd. keep up the good work, y'all.

    as a mac user for +16 years it's VERY inspiring to see this kind of play happening. we didn't used to have choices like this, you know...
  9. aconu macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2008
    So, that's work much better with a 7300GT.
    The best setup is to use NVinject with slightly modified NVidia kext (add 9800GX2 identification strings in Info.plist).
    Nkush doesn't recognized the full 512Mb from the GX2 card, and my screen flash at windows login under OS X.

    There is on problem : OS X detect and set at login screen a 1280x1024 "phantom" display on the 7300GT. I need to disctonnect DVI from 9800GX2, connect it to 7300GT, and back to 9800GX2 in order to get the login window on 9800GX2 display. Very strange.
  10. MacVidCards thread starter Suspended

    Nov 17, 2008
    Hollywood, CA
    I am hopeful that recent advances in EFI ROM connection in 4870 thread will carry over to Nvidia 8800GT ROM.

    The one thorn in any of these Dual GPU cards is that DUal Displays are implemented via a final software "lock" via the ATI or Nvidia control panel. Even if we get Mac to see the two halves of 9800GX2 perfectly, it is tying them together via SLI, which is how it is done in WIndows, that is most likely insurmountable. (I have not actually run a 3870 X2 or 4870 X2...if you don't need "Crossfire" from ATI to run them...I am in error)

    EFI ROM integration would probably be best used on 9800GTX (won't actually RUN with Mac 8800GT ROM, but will flash nonsense at boot...ie, the EFI THINKS it has loaded a "covered" card.)

    The 8800GTS 512 would also make a good candidate, even though it will run with 8800GT ROM, I am not convinced that it is using full 128 Stream Processors when running OSX.

    If either pipomolo42 or Netkas were to have a look at 8800GT ROM, they might have an idea.

    Sad thing is that since it is not EBC, like the ATI ROMs, there will always be the divide between EFI 32 and EFI 64. Twice the work to make them work on all machines.
  11. Eithanius macrumors 65816

    Nov 19, 2005
    Got my hands on an XFX 9800GTX+ 512MB and followed closely on Netkas' instructions. While it runs fine on everything, display movement is a bit jittery when iTunes is active. That includes mouse cursor movement as well as video playback.

    Need For Speed Carbon totally unplayable with image upside down... :(

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