Graphics card to get for Mac Pro 1,1 2.66 GHz quad core

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Synergy67, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. Synergy67, Dec 9, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012

    Synergy67 macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    I just got a used Mac Pro 1,1 2.66 GHz quad core with 4GB RAM.
    I am running Snow Leopard 10.6.8 and intend to stay with it for the forseeable future.
    This machine needs a new video card, and the seller has agreed to install one in the $180 price range, at my choice of card. What should I get in that price range? From research so far, it looks like the nVidia's are higher regarded. I want to make sure I get something that is:

    Of reliable quality - I like things that do their job well AND last.

    Reasonably fast - would like to run Civ IV or the new SimCity 5 when it comes out, but otherwise not a big game player, and just do some basic video editing on stuff I'm exporting from videotapes.

    QUIET! I know some ATI cards have issues with really noisy onboard fans. The Radeon 512MB ATI card in this machine is super noisy which is why the seller agreed to exchange it.

    Anything else I should be asking about?


    ADDIT: I have started with this link for information on compatibilities.
  2. Synergy67 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    It looks like it's down to these choices for my model.

    "GeForce 8800 GT

    This is a good budget option for the Mac Pro. It's an older card, and is somewhat harder to find these days, but it's a good choice for someone with lower video card needs. It also fits into one PCI-E slot on the Mac Pro motherboard, which leaves more room for other items. There is also a double-slot version, the 8800 GTS. Something to look out for is GTS double-slot cards being sold as single-slot GT cards by unscrupulous sellers.

    Radeon HD 4870

    Until Apple releases the 5870 for the Mac later this year, the 4870 is the most powerful ATI graphics card officially available for the Mac Pro. It's fast, reliable, and it's a great choice for both gaming and creative work. However, it still lags behind the GTX 285 (and even the GTX 260) on most benchmarks.

    Radeon HD 4890

    This graphics card is occasionally sold for the Mac Pro, and can be made to work perfectly with the application of a small software patch. Although not officially supported by Apple, this card is faster than the 4870 and is the fastest ATI card until the 5870 hits the shelves."

    So...advice from someone with experience?
  3. Synergy67 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    Best self-answer I can find is that this looks like the best overall solution, especially on the quiet part. It's $249 from Apple, so I'd have to pay the difference to the seller. Looks like it's worth it though. Does all 1GHz of that video memory get used by my 1,1 with its PCI E 1.0 slots? Is something halved or lost using this card? Is it worth it?

    ATI Radeon HD 5770 Graphics Upgrade Kit for Mac Pro (Mid 2010)
  4. Photoshopper macrumors regular


    Mar 24, 2010
    Not sure you have a choice, Snow Leopard may be latest OS you can run.
    I can't wait to upgrade my old 1,1 at work-- I wouldn't put much money into it, if I were you.
  5. shongohan macrumors member

    Aug 10, 2006
    I have the same computer macpro1,1

    I suggest you to buy the ati 6870 (pc version) and then install the hacked drivers.
    Also you can install lion without problems.

    Even mountain lion but that is a bit more complicated

    The cost of the 6870 is only 100 euro and the performance is incredibly fast in comparison with others
  6. Synergy67, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2013

    Synergy67 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    This 1,1 Mac Pro came with Lion installed, and that is the highest OS X that can run on this machine. But I prefer Snow Leopard for numerous reasons, especially because it is the last OS to include Rosetta.

    I got the 5700 card, and it is running happily, but now I am trying to have it run movies through the MiniDisplay port on the card to my Samsung 40" LED HDTV without any luck. I'm going to post a new thread about that.

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