cMP and nVidia 900 series?

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by jpine, Oct 13, 2015.

  1. jpine, Oct 13, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015

    jpine macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2007
    Ok, Guys, I know the best answer to the following question is to go buy a Windows box.:) But here is my situation and question:

    Oculus Rift has suspended development for the Mac. For how long, no one knows for sure. I have the OR DK2 and need to jump back in and develop applications. My applications are for research purposes (I'm a 56 year old psychologist. I'm not a gamer.) However, I am using Unity3D V5 to build the apps so I need the horsepower of a good gaming computer to play AAA quality apps at no less than 70FPS. Anything below that speed and motion sickness becomes a real problem while using the Oculus. So here is my question: I have a cMP 5,1 12 core with 64 GB of RAM. Since that computer is not known of stellar single core performance compared to a fast Core i7 or even an i5, can I compensate for the lesser CPU performance, while running AAA equivalent apps or even off the shelf games with a GTX 970 SSC or better? I'm running Windows 8.1 under Bootcamp.


  2. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    It'll be fine. Games are heavily GPU-bound these days . The 970 will work in OS X too with nVidia's web drivers. I have a 970 in my hackintosh with an older i5 760 from 2010 and I'm not bottlenecked with the latest games.
  3. avemestr macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2012
    A GTX 970 is certainly a possibility. But you have to pay attention to which power connectors the specific card have and how much power it requires in order to make it easy for yourself to install.

    Eg. some cards require 1 x 8pin and 1 x 6 pin power, whereas your MP by default only have 2 x 6 pin. In general people seem to be very happy with EVGA cards, but perhaps not the superclocked ones (again, look at the specs).

    Have a look at all the graphic card threads in this forum:
  4. h9826790 macrumors G5


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    A non-flashed 970 will run at PCIe 1.1 speed, which should not be a problem as long as you put it in the x16 slot (slot 1 or 2 in your 5,1).

    Windows 8.1 is not a problem, however, if you may use your Mac with OSX. This card only support in 10.10 or later. Also, the Nvidia web driver must be installed and activated before you install the card. Otherwise, black screen only.

    So, if you may ever use OSX, and this is your working machine, think twice before you do that. A simple security update from Apple may lead you to black screen but nothing else.

    If you want PCIe2.0, boot screen, and basic display after an OS update to allow you to update and activate the web driver. You will need a flashed card, or running dual card (e.g. an extra GT120).

    In terms of power, it depends on if you are willing to take the risk. Even though each 6 pin in the 5,1 is only rated 75W, from tests, the self shutdown protection won't kick in until 120W, and I personally running dual 7950 by these two 6pins only, regularly pulling more than 80W per cable, and occasionally pull a 100W. The system working flawlessly so far. Of course, I won't recommend anyone to do anything beyond the official limit. However, the 5,1 virtually can power any 970 without any problem (including the super clock model).

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3 October 13, 2015