Early 2008 Mac Pro - Mountain Lion

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by epidote, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. epidote macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2012
    I have an Early 2008 Mac Pro with the following specs running Lion fine.

    Processor 2 x 2.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
    Memory 8 GB 800 MHz DDR2 FB-DIMM
    Graphics ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT 256 MB
    Software Mac OS X Lion 10.7.5

    Been reading that the (as shipped) graphics card might not be up for the job for Mountain Lion. Anyone got an opinion/had any problems with similar setup?

  2. Phrygian, Nov 14, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2012

    Phrygian macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2011
    Your Radeon HD 2600 XT is a dated (old) card, however it will run Mountain Lion just fine. That said some programs you run on mountain lion may not appreciate a dated card. There are several option for improving your graphics card that can be found on the forum, and most of those talk about using a PC card, which will save you money and give you better options, since Apple is including drivers for these cards in their OS these days. You don't have to flash many pc cards anymore for them to work, but you wont have your initial boot screen (no big deal).

    I have the same model as you (2x2.8g MP 3.1 early 2008), and i chose a ATI radeon HD 6870 1g GPU as my replacement and it has been fantastic so far. I can even run Planet Side 2 on maxed out graphics (though i opt to go lower to pwn fools with more ease).

    You can find more information regarding GPU upgrades on Groths.org or Netkas.org forums. However its somewhat hard to find information on netkas and thats really for people who want to flash their cards bios to efi so they can have a boot screen. If you want to keep it simple, just install one of several ATI series cards that are confirmed as having drivers on OS. I found the 6870 not only to be the best price per power, but also appreciated that Cindori over at groths.org has a software fix for a few small glitches that can occur when using a PC card in a mac pro.

    GL finding what you are looking for.
  3. epidote thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2012

    Thanks for your time, good to know it's still up for the job, at least for the basics. Will upgrade and see if I bump into any problems. Not maxing out any capabilities as is purely a work machine (web, apps) with no video editing, gaming. A new card would be tempting though, some system functions, launchpad, dashboard can be a little laggy even on Lion, I assume that's the old card.

  4. Phrygian macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2011
    You will gain significantly more speed by upgrading to a SSD drive than by getting a new GPU fo the app lag you are talking about.
  5. kendall69 macrumors regular

    Sep 1, 2011
    Nothing but Problems

    I had way too many problems with my 2008 and Mt. Lion I wiped it out. It slowed the computer down even with an upgraded video card. Out look would no longer work. And on and on.
  6. Mactrunk macrumors regular

    May 12, 2005
    I have the same machine as the OP, but with Radeon 5770.
    Works great!
    No problems here.


    P.S. For me, ML is working better than Lion.
  7. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    Mountain Lion runs just dandy on my 2008 MP with an EFI-flashed 8800 GT 512MB card. No hiccups.
  8. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2009
    All fine here with the same machine and a flashed 4870.
  9. Bwa macrumors 6502

    Jun 20, 2007
    Boston & San Jose
    When I bought my 2008, I bought it with three 2600s so I could run six monitors.

    What I eventually found was the 2600s were bad video cards--random machine freezes and lock ups. I ran ML on the 2008 for some time just fine with a 5770, and I ran a pair of 5770s and Lion for a long time too.

    Get rid of the 2600 and get a 5770, and like another poster said, get an ssd if you can afford to do some upgrades. It will feel like a new machine. :)
  10. epidote thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2012
    Update - All fine

    Just an update for anyone considering the same issue. Installed mountain lion on a fresh hard drive (not SSD) and it performed like any recent machine I've used.

    Upon migrating accounts across (love the migration Asst, no problems, all passwords and settings present after a clean install, just had to turn off LCD font smoothing due to fat bold fonts) machine is performing better than it did under Lion. Lion was an upgrade rather than a clean install, not sure if that made any difference.

    Would recommend the upgrade to anyone considering it even with stock standard video card.

    Thanks for the replies.

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