Does ATi 4870 work with ATi 2600 XT

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by nekkoddd, Jul 17, 2009.

  1. nekkoddd macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    I have a 2009 - Mac Pro 8 Core with a 4870 Video Card. I know this card uses both the six pin power plugs. I want to add a ATi 2600 Xt card to be able to drive a third monitor and Wacom Cintiq tablet.

    Will there be any problems doing this? Does the 2600 just plug into the PCI slot and fire right up? Do I have to adjust the card from 16 to 8?

    Thanks for the help.:apple:

    Mike
     
  2. TheStrudel macrumors 65816

    TheStrudel

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    #2
    It should simply just work. You will not need to adjust the card in any way - if you were referring to PCIe lanes, they're already set and you cannot change them in that model of mac pro.
     
  3. emt377 macrumors member

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    Oct 12, 2008
  4. nekkoddd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    #4
    Thanks for the video card info

    Super! Was adding this simply plug and play? Or, is there some configuration required?

    How is the quality on the lesser video card compared to the 4870? I have 3 Apple 23" Displays, and a Cintiq Wacom Tablet. Do you have any experiece running a Cintiq on you set up?

    Any other suggestions would be welcomed.

    Thanks again.
     
  5. 2002cbr600f4i macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    #5
    I have that exact config in my 2009 Quad and it works fine...

    I just plugged the 2600XT into the next highest slot and booted up. Nothing else needed.

    Currently running a Dell 2405 off the 4870 and a pair of Dell 2007's off the 2600XT.
     
  6. nekkoddd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    #6
    Does the 2600XT reap any benifit off the main video card(4870) such as the video on board memory, or any other benifit? Or, do they not work that way.

    How much better is the more expensive card in your opinion. Thanks for explaining your thoughts.

    Mike
     
  7. Mackilroy macrumors 68040

    Mackilroy

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    #7
    No. Each card is separate, and they can't use the other GPU's memory or anything like that.

    The 4870 is FAR better than the HD2600 XT. Two generations newer, double the VRAM, and plenty of other little stuff that makes it an enormous improvement over the other card. It's definitely worth the extra money, though if you're brave you can flash a PC 4870 and save some moolah that way.
     
  8. nekkoddd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    #8
    I already have one Apple 4870 video card that is using up both 6 pin aux. power plugins. I was told to operate more video cards I needed to have a video card that used minimal power, since both plugs are used.

    So, thus the 2600XT was suggested, is this advice good advice. I would rather have two 4870's but I am told that is not possible.

    thanks,

    Mike
     
  9. nekkoddd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    #9
    Please Lock thread

    I installed the 2600XT it was a simple plug and play. It works great with the 4870. thanks for the input.
     
  10. Cindori macrumors 68040

    Cindori

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #10

    You can draw power from the second superdrive slot like this:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=418279

    although not recommended.
     
  11. TheStrudel macrumors 65816

    TheStrudel

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    #11
    Actually, you can run two 4870s. It has been done by other forum members, though it is suggested that rather than drawing power from the the optical taps (which are not designed for this), you can use a PCIe Y-splitter to split the logic board tap again. It is unnecessary if all you need to do is display, though.
     
  12. 2002cbr600f4i macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    #12
    Sorry I didnt' get back to you sooner...

    Yeah, like you I would have preferred to have 2 4870's, but that looked like it was going to be a pain so I just picked up a Mac 2600XT off eBay for $70. I really didn't want to be doing Frankenstein cabling jobs inside my nice new Mac Pro... It does suck that they don't give you a way to do 2 cards though, especially with OpenCL coming soon!

    As others have said, no, both cards are totally separate. Likewise, keep in mind, if you're doing boot camp to do any Windows stuff, the 2600XT only does DirectX9.0c, the 4870 does DirectX 10.x as well as 9.0. I've had issues when moving a window running DX10 games between monitors. As soon as it hits one of the monitors that the 2600XT is running, Windows 7 crashed. I haven't had any such issues inside of OSX, but then, that's all OpenGL...

    But otherwise, it works fine. I DO notice a bit of performance difference when moving windows between monitors (and hence cards.) mostly when playing video or doing anything involving window redraws.

    As such, my typical workflow in OSX tends to use the monitor hooked to the 4870 for main tasks and anything graphics intensive, and I use the other monitors off the 2600Xt for things like IM clients, web browsers, documentation, etc.

    Hope this helps!
     
  13. lannister80 macrumors 6502

    lannister80

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #13
    Aren't the traces on the logic board awfully small/thin, possibly resulting in frying those traces?

    I thought there was a worry about connecting 2 cards to the logic board...maybe I'm wrong though, but I thought I remember something about that from the 4870 mega-thread.
     
  14. TheStrudel macrumors 65816

    TheStrudel

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    #14
    Actually, it was the traces for the optical bays that are weaker and not designed for that kind of stress. The 4870 mega-thread has posts about doing it, and there was a separate dual-4870 thread where it was established that the PCIe taps were capable of this with no stability issues.

    Worth pointing out: Your secondary graphics card is mostly operating at an "idle" status, as it isn't doing primary pixel pushing. It's confined mostly to window display duties and it isn't being hit for GPU intensive work, so it will be running slower and cooler the whole time. The 2600XT may be running a monitor, but it'll be running as low as it possibly can.
     
  15. nekkoddd thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 17, 2009
    #15
    I find it hard to understand why Apple did not allow for two high grade video cards to be installed in the MacPro 8 Core machines. Do you know what threads discussed the use of two 4870's??

    thanks,

    Mike
     
  16. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #16

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