ATI Crossfire or Nvidia SLI support

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by iansilv, Feb 3, 2008.

  1. iansilv macrumors 65816

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    #1
    Does anyone think apple would support this? I switched from a pc because of Leopard being just a superior operating system- i would love to see apple support mutiple graphics cards for higher performance gaming. Anybody ever heard rumors about this?
     
  2. ray_uk macrumors member

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    #2
    From what I have heard the current Mac Pro can support either 2 x 8800GT's or 2 x 3870's as far as the energy requirements go, however, within Leopard its not going to do either Crossfire or SLI, but will function as two individual graphic cards, note the 3870 is not officially supported in OSX, however under windows it is very likely that the two 3870's would support corssfire I believe due to current crossfire being implemented in drivers.
     
  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #3
    For the last time, as I've personally made two threads on this subject. NO SLI OR CROSSFIRE in OS X. The people who use either of them represent around 2% of the entire market, and Apple couldn't care less about gaming, anyway. On the old Mac Pro, it was found to work somewhat in Windows, but you're not getting two 8800 GT to work together in OS X.

    To remedy this situation, I'm getting two 8800 GT for my Mac Pro anyway and hooking up one monitor to each. That way I have the power of an entire card behind each monitor; something that SLI and CrossFire can't do.

    Oh, and I don't put an 's' on 8800 GT when it's plural because I don't want to mess up searches for specific models.

    Edit: OP, congratulations on your first name.
     
  4. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

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    #4
    Both SLi and Crossfire and implemented in drivers. They are also limited by the drivers to only work on boards nVidia/ATi deem compatible. There is no hard physical limitation stopping a board with dual PCI-E 16x slots from doing either.
     
  5. iansilv thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #5
    I am not talking about them being supported now- I am talking about them being supported in the future. Sure, its not mainstream, but it is someting that , from a PR standpoint, would get apple some attention from gamers.
     
  6. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

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    #6
    I don't think SLI will happen until nVidia support SLI on Intel. Imagine buying a Mac Pro and having SLI in OSX, but not in Windows. That would get a whole lot of people annoyed.
     
  7. kabunaru Guest

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    Jan 28, 2008
    #7
    So, Crossfire is more "possible" on a Mac Pro than SLI?
     
  8. ekwipt macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #8
    more possible yes because it is on a intel board, i doubt that we'll ever get crossfire going in osx. nvidia doesn't do sli on intel boards. except maybe for skulltrail
     
  9. ray_uk macrumors member

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    #9
    True, I am however baseing this on the asumption that since Crossfire is supported on the Intel P35, X38 and X48 chipsets it makes it highly likely to work on the current Mac Pro whose motherboard uses Intel 5400 chipset which is similar chipset to that of the Skulltrail boards due out soon, which definitely supports crossfire and probably SLI to.



     
  10. newtech macrumors 6502

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    Jun 2, 2007
    #10
    NO, Skulltrail has nVidia chips that the Mac Pro motherboard does not have, so no SLI. P35, X38 and X48 chipsets are in a different class from 5400B
     
  11. Bastich macrumors regular

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    #11
    Having some GAMES would get attention from gamers.

    B)
     
  12. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

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    #12
    The reason SLI doesn't work on intel motherboards is the same reason OSX doesn't install on any X86 machine.

    There is no hardware or technical reason why SLI or Crossfire can't run on these chip sets. There is no hardware or technical reason why SLI can't run on ATi chipsets, or for crossfire to run on nVidia chipsets.

    All the work for SLI/Crossfire is done in the driver. The driver artificially limits what chipsets it "supports".
     
  13. ray_uk macrumors member

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    Feb 27, 2005
    #13
    99%

    Yeah, the driver does determine which chipset it runs, on and in this instance as I had mentioned its the Intel 5400 chipset same as the one the Skulltrail motherboard uses which does support crossfire and just so happens to be the same chipset the the Mac Pro uses.

    All I'm saying is the likelyhood of crossfire working under windows is very high.
     
  14. Mercuric Oxide macrumors 6502

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    #14
    What about the 300W PCI total? Is this circumvented with other connectors to the main PSU?
     
  15. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #15
    As long as the PSU can take the power draw you can connect as many cards as you want. All you need is some 4-pin molex to 8 (or 6)-pin PCIe connectors.
     
  16. ray_uk macrumors member

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    #16
    8800GT Power Consumption

    :D

    The power consumption of a 8800GT is somewhere in the upper 130 Watts region so the Mac Pro should manage with two.

    :D
     
  17. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #17
    110, actually, so we should be good.
     
  18. jatkins123 macrumors newbie

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    Oct 17, 2007
    #18
    ok so can i get an answer for this...

    I have a macpro coming. standard config with extra ram HD's blah blah blah and 1 8800gt...i do my work in OSX and i accept that 2 8800gt's will do nothing other than let me run extra monitors...however, i intend to do some gaming in windows vista and I want to know if this will benefit me there if i run it in SLI mode??

    thanks
     
  19. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #19
    You can only do that with hacked (read: unsupported) drivers. But yes you can get SLI working in Windows with 2 8800GT cards.
     
  20. jatkins123 macrumors newbie

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    Oct 17, 2007
    #20
    thanks for the quick reply!! would you be able to tell me where i might find out how to do this? and if i get these drivers it wont effect the cards working in OSX right?

    sorry im a bit clueless
     
  21. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #21
    After doing some snooping, it is more difficult than I realized. Plus no one is sure that the GF8 series will even work with the hacked drivers. Supposedly there is a way to get a more up to date inf that should include the GF8 cards. Here is the long thread.
     
  22. ma2ha3 macrumors regular

    ma2ha3

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  23. Fuzzbear macrumors regular

    Fuzzbear

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    #23
    Id imagine you would have to make sure the SLI connector was on the cards?

    for SLI to work on Wintel's the cards are physically bridged together with an internal connector that typically comes with a Motherboard.

    [​IMG]
     
  24. Kosh66 macrumors 6502

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    Jul 15, 2004
    #24
    He'll need a flexible bridge, likely. Those that have got this working on the first generation of Mac Pros used a flexible bridge, I believe.

    As well, wouldn't pro apps like Maya and Cinema 4 and Final Cut Pro's Color benefit from SLI. I mean we always look at the games part, which interests me, but what's good for games is often good for the pro apps, right? So then it would be of interest to Apple to support SLI or Crossfire.
     
  25. jasonvp macrumors 6502a

    jasonvp

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    Northern VA
    #25
    Not in the least, right now. There has to be application-level support as well as OS-level support in order to fully take advantage of SLI. Not quite as sure about Crossfire.

    Either way, the Pro apps will need to support SLI. Not just the operating system.

    And remember: as soon as you enable SLI, you lose all but 1 monitor. There is no multi-monitor support for SLI from nVidia.

    jas
     

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