Graphics Card for PowerMac G5

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by ry60003333, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. ry60003333 macrumors newbie


    Sep 12, 2010
    I recently acquired a Dual 1.8 GHz PowerMac G5 from one of my friends who no longer has any use for it, and I want to get a new graphics card for it. I was wondering what the best graphics card for this machine would be, and if it would be worth buying it.
  2. MacForScience macrumors 6502


    Sep 7, 2010
    Off the top of my head:
    Radeon 9800 PRO Mac Edition
    Radeon 9800 PRO Mac Special Edition
    Radeon X800 XT Mac Edition

    You can try a PC AGP 8X card but you will have to check around and probably flash it to make it work (this can be a pain and may never work correctly).

  3. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    the mac edition cards are getting harder and harder to find for the PowerMac's
    they had been hard to find already some years ago especially the x800 as mac edition the pc versions you get fairly easy and if you know how to flash them ....
    but the 9800 do a good job and might be available somewhere
    the geforce 6800 gt or was it gs cant remember had also been good cards , they had dual dvi out great if you have 2 monitors
    the others had one dvi and one adc out to my knowledge

    but i think all of the above are cards from around 2004

    ok there is a geforce 7800 gs definitely flashable
    there are a couple cards mentioned in that article to work with the G5 too so its up to you how good you are at sourcing these cards on ebay or the like or you might even find in some old barn like computershop lying around old stock
    but like macforsience said flashing one is not that easy and you might end up with a nice paperweight

    but as you dont seem to much bothered about if the card is high performance so look in ebay for G5 graphics card there are always a couple , just use the one with the higher RAM ,
    the original 64mb geforce fx5200 ultra are not bad , ok they are not really for gaming or anything demanding ,but you get a picture on the screen (even a moving one if you watch a film ), and i mean they are cheap to get and
    a cheap slow but working graphics card is better then a expensive fast one that does not work any more after flashing went wrong
  4. sgrddy macrumors newbie

    Sep 3, 2010
    McMurray, PA
    Ebay has listings for 7800GTs for the G5.

    There are some G5s that have PCI-express right? Does anyone know what the optimal card is for those?

    I've read that for the newer Intel-based Mac Pros that most PC graphics cards work fine (even the GTX 470s and such). Is that more or less correct?
  5. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
  6. sysiphus macrumors 6502a


    May 7, 2006
    The short answer is that the highest-performing cards you can get are the ATI X800/X850 , and the Nvidia Geforce 6800 GT/Ultra.

    The ATI card is theoretically faster, but some people (including me) thought the Nvidia cards had better drivers. The Nvidia cards are huge, and occupy both the AGP slot and the space in front of the adjacent PCI slot. The Nvidia cards also have two dual-link DVI ports, rather than 1 dual-link DVI and one ADC, as on the ATI cards. The ATI cards are more common, as they were available for a while in retail channels, whereas the Nvidia cards were available only very briefly as a separate kit (and as a BTO option). These are the best you can get of the original Apple-compatible cards for your machine (AGP-graphics G5). There were several better official Mac cards for G5s with PCI-Express, these will NOT work in your G5, regardless of whether you have PCI or PCI-X slots. [PCI-X is NOT the same thing as PCI-Express].

    There are also some flashed PC cards available; the general sentiment is that they're pretty good, but the official Apple cards are the only ones guaranteed to work. A stock PC card will not work in a Mac without re-flashing the firmware to a Mac-compatible version.

    Your second question was if it was worth buying such a card. The primary motivation for a high-end graphics card in an AGP-based G5 would be gaming (as no pro-level Quadro etc cards were ever available for those computers). If you know you want to play games on your G5, then, by all means, go for it--but be aware that if World of Warcraft is your motivation, don't bother. In fact, don't bother with that computer, period; PowerPC support for WoW is ending with the launch of Cataclysm this year.

    Hope this helps; let me know if you have more questions.

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