ATi 3870 alternatives

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Turin, Sep 11, 2008.

  1. Turin macrumors newbie

    Turin

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    Location:
    London, UK
    #1
    Hello all,

    I have a Mac Pro and the stock 2600 installed. Having waited for months on my preorder of the Radeon 3870, its still not in stock, and its been delayed for another 3 weeks in the UK. I have a couple of questions, Is it possible to flash the PC 3870 card to work in OS X? I’ve had a quick search on this forum, and I’m unsure as to what the results conclude. What is the highest performance mainstream graphics card that can run on the Mac Pro, officially or unofficially? I need the card by this weekend. I love my Mac Pro, but boy are the graphics card options severely limited :(

    Thanks
     
  2. hms84 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    #2
    I'm waiting for 3870 for month and a half now from US, and I CAN'T EVEN CANCEL the order.
    I don't think you can flash PC graphics card, allot of people tried.
     
  3. /dev/toaster macrumors 68020

    /dev/toaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2006
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #3
    Update: Nevermind, I just realized you are in the UK ... :D

    I am going to be purchasing a Mac Pro soon, and planned on getting the 3870. I didn't realize there was a crazy wait for them, where did you order them ? (want to know who to avoid)
     
  4. Fast Shadow macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #4
    I ordered a 3870 yesterday from OWC and it shipped within a couple of hours. They have them in stock.

    International customers might be facing delays because of customs.
     
  5. unlokia macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #6
    My mistake :eek: the target card MUST have 128k rom, so I hear.
     
  6. Turin thread starter macrumors newbie

    Turin

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    Location:
    London, UK
    #7
    After all the frustration I finally got one :) but it's so loud I've had to send it back and await a replacement :(
     
  7. unlokia macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #8
    Mine was sent as a freebie from ATI. Nice. Have yet to receive it, but I hear good things for Maya compatibility.
     
  8. ungraphic macrumors 6502a

    ungraphic

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #9
    Try updating to OS X 10.5.5. 10.5.4 made my 3870 whirl like crazy whenever watching videos and the likes.
     
  9. xgman macrumors 601

    xgman

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2007
    #10
    This is the single most glaring problem with Mac Pros. They are stuck years behind in vid card options. It's mind boggling to me.
     
  10. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    近畿日本
    #11
    Instead of sending it back, why don't you swap out the default fan and heat sink for something quieter or possibly passive? The front fans in the MacPro will or should have enough airflow to cool even the most demanding gfx card.

    You know, you have MicroDirect a stone throw away and they sell tons of add-ons, perhaps you 'll need to hunt around for something suitable but you still have Aria Technologies, Planet Micro and various other indies... They have tons of heatsinks... If push comes to shove there's always OC in stoke.

    Here in Japan, we're still waiting for them to hit the selves...
    If only I'm in Tokyo!
     
  11. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #12
  12. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

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    #13

    Like minds... ;)

    Less than 60mile for the OP... though there's always ParcelForce.
     
  13. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #14
    :D :p

    As it happens, IIRC, they can ship internationally. :D
    Might be worth an e-mail. And the bragging rights if you get it before anyone else in Japan. :p
     
  14. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

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    Jun 16, 2007
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    #15
    Thanks... I don't think I'm that desperate for a faster card, current one does everything. Besides... I gotta save money!!
     
  15. Trip.Tucker Guest

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    #16
    Years huh? When was the 3870 released?
     
  16. grue macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Somewhere.
    #17
    Years behind on good video cards, at least. The 3870 is a decent medium-strength card, but it's nothing to write home about.
     
  17. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

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    #18
    I'm curious.. if you had the most up-to-day gfx what would you run on it? assuming your using for the Mac side. If you wanna be bang upto date with the PC side, there's absolutely nothing stopping you from investing in a dedicated card for your beloved windoze gamez
     
  18. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #19
    Considering the cost of an nVidia Quadro FX5600 Mac edition, it's the best most Mac users currently have available without unlimited funds. ;)

    Though the ATi 4870/50 have been announced, they aren't here yet. Nor are we going to get the 4870X2 it seems. //Grr...// :p
     
  19. grue macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Somewhere.
    #20
    There's plenty to stop me: Laziness. I can't be bothered to switch my video cable back and forth every time I want to reboot, and I don't want to deal with a video switch, either. Though ironically, if Apple had more inputs on the Cinema Displays like every other civilized manufacturer, I could just run a second video cable and switch video sources on reboot.

    That and the fact that I don't have enough slots available for a second video card right now anyway.
     
  20. Fast Shadow macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2004
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #21
    The 3870 may be a middle of the road, but other than Crysis what games is the 3870 not able to push at very high framerates?

    I'm playing Mass Effect at 1900x1200 with all of the settings cranked on my 3870 and it doesn't even sweat.

    This seems like much ado about nothing, unless all you care about is Crysis.

    And even then if I put a second 3870 in my MP and used Crossfire, I would be able to run Crysis in very high quality. I don't know of any games that are close to being as demanding as Crysis except for maybe the upcoming Far Cry 2.
     
  21. grue macrumors 65816

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    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Somewhere.
    #22
    Flight Simulator X, for starters. Furthermore, it's not necessarily a problem with current games, but the card would be the bottleneck for future graphically intensive games.
     
  22. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    近畿日本
    #23
    Why would you need to switch between boards? You can install upto four gfx card in your MP. Those that don't work under Mac will just sit there with it's fans swirling around keeping the GPU cool, if the sound of swooshing wind annoys, you install a passive cooler! Likewise in Windows you can disable the Mac cards you don't like it to use...

    The only thing you'll need to solve after is the display, maybe you should invest in a DELL and have dual inputs from your Mac? Doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure things out!

    :rolleyes:
     
  23. grue macrumors 65816

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    Nov 14, 2003
    Location:
    Somewhere.
    #24
    Your entire argument is mooted because you didn't actually read my post. All of my PCIe slots are in use, I have no room for a second video card.
     
  24. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
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    Location:
    近畿日本
    #25
    Having filled all your slots isn't an excuse not to expand the system. Haven't you heard about PCIe expansion chassis? Professionals use them to install all sorts of gadgets, varying from pro audio equipment to video cards. Perhaps it's time you invested in one, or a few?
     

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