GTX 980 Ti for Mac Pro 4,1 recommendations

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by ifraaank, Mar 12, 2016.

  1. ifraaank, Mar 12, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2016

    ifraaank macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    Jun 25, 2012
    Location:
    Odense C, Denmark
    #1
    Hello, sorry for making another thread on this, but I thought it would be a nice place to summarize the state of the 980 Ti for the Mac Pro.

    I'm soon going to buy the 980 Ti for my Mac Pro 4,1 -> 5,1 hack. I would like to know which cards is recommended in different powering situations.

    I'm mostly looking at eVGA's products as they are pretty competitively priced. (MVC's 980Ti is unfortunately out of question for me right now as those prices are ridiculously high in my country.)

    1. If I power the card with the two mini 6-pin only, which version would work best? (if at all..)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti SC+ GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, slight overclock, backplate, quieter/more pwr than ref)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti SC GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, slight overclock, quieter/more pwr than ref)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, no overclock, quieter, possibly more power draw)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti GAMING (reference card, so stock cooler, stock clock, stock power draw)

    2. If I power the card with a two 6-pin -> 8-pin, as well as 2x Optical Drive SATA power -> 6-pin?
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti SC+ GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, slight overclock, backplate, quieter/more pwr than ref)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti SC GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, slight overclock, quieter/more pwr than ref)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti GAMING ACX 2.0+ (twin fans, no overclock, quieter, possibly more power draw)
    eVGA GTX 980 Ti GAMING (reference card, so stock cooler, stock clock, stock power draw)

    I know that power draw when using only two 6-pin is right on the edge, that's why I'm considering option 2. But is option 2 able to handle the SC/SC+ versions? Let me know your inputs, even if you think that this is overall a bad idea. I just got my Mac Pro, and would love to get the very best solution without modifying PS cables. Lowest noise level, best performance and lowest power draw, where's the sweet spot?! Thanks a lot.

    EDIT: According to this: http://techreport.com/review/28685/geforce-gtx-980-ti-cards-compared/5 the SC (not +) uses slightly less power than the ref at idle, and slightly more than ref at load. (But also performs better)
    Can you help me choose? Should I worry about too much power draw even if we're talking about a couple of watts? Thanks again ;)

    EDIT 2: I could also go with the ACX 2.0+ version without SC? I don't knoooooowwww... Put it in the list above..

    //ifraaank
     
  2. Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #2
    Maybe somebody should learn how to under-voltage a GTX 980 Ti to reduce its power consumption in a Mac Pro ? A lower voltage card combined with option 2 might make for a safe and powerful installation . I have three of these cards and I'll need to learn how to do this myself if I do not install them in PCs .
     
  3. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #3
    Is that what MVC does with his card? Or is there no modifications beside the Mac EFI part?
     
  4. Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #4
    Mac Edition ROM = EFI + (PC) BIOS . Voltage settings are in the BIOS .

    I tried to get MVC to change the voltage on a card I wanted to have flashed by him . He said he doesn't do that .
     
  5. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #5
    Okay, but MVC says that it's enough by using the two 6-pin connectors to power the card. What's different to his card than the ones I stated above? (Or at least the reference card)
     
  6. Machines, Mar 12, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2016

    Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #6
    I don't have a flashed card from him, so I have never tested it for safety under extended load conditions . With all my Builds I have strict performance and safety requirements . I do know there will be eventually a problem if power is drawn from a connector significantly beyond its rating on a continuous basis . What that limit is for any connector will be determined by the resulting failures . Classic Mac Pros are over-engineered and over-manufactured . That said , if you have the ability to operate the card within the power ratings of the connectors (either by down-voltaging or using more connectors for additional power ) then by all means you should .
     
  7. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #7
    Okay, i bought a GTX 980 Ti with the ACX 2.0 cooler, but no SC. I'm thinking of powering it with dual 6-pin (from mobo) to single 8-pin, and dual SATA (from optical drive bay) to 6-pin. That should work perfectly without any restrictions right?

    Thanks
     
  8. netkas macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2007
    #8
    Pretty bad idea

    the card consumes 250w.

    75 from pcie slot, 75 watt from 6-pin and about 100 watt from 8-pin (out of max 150 watt)

    powering it on mvc's scheme will only make card miss about 25 watts (6-pin + 6-pin + pci-e gives 225w), but in reality such high load is pretty rare to happen on osx

    in you case you will give just about 20-25 watts to 6-pin port making card miss 50 watts from it, pretty bad

    better way:
    6-pin to 6-pin of card. dual-sata to 6-pin + 6-pin from mobo -> 2x6pin to 8-pin -> videocard. not a perfect yet.
     
  9. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #9
    Thank you for the answer netkas!
    Can't the SATA ports deliver more power than 20-25 watts combined?

    So combining the power from the SATA and the 6-pin from the mobo into a 8-pin? "How perfect" would this be? How many watts would this give me?

    Sorry for all the questions, seriously don't want to fry anything :p
     
  10. Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #10

    Why is it a bad idea ?

    His card will receive the full 150 W from the two mini 6 pin (75 W + 75 W) motherboard connectors to the video card's standard 8 pin connector , via a splitter cable .

    His card should receive the full 75 W from the two optical drive bay power connectors (40 W + 40 W) to the video card's standard 6 pin connector, via a splitter cable .

    And his card will receive the full 75 W from being installed in a PCIe motherboard slot .

    That's a total of 300 W provided and probably not even needed .

    I sell GPGPU upgraded Mac and PC workstations .
     
  11. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #11
    Edit:
    Another (maybe stupid) question: will it prioritize the 6-pin for power, and then use the 8 pin if it needs more?
     
  12. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

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    #12
    I don't think so. And this is one of the biggest problem why we need to manage the power according to the worst scenario. If it always follow the same prioritisation to draw power, it will be much easier for us to manage it.
     
  13. Machines, Mar 15, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2016

    Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #13
    I don't think so either . If you were to fire up one of these puppies without enough juice , you'll damage something . Probably fry lanes in the PCIe slot as the card tries to compensate by drawing power elsewhere .

    It might be possible to use Hardware Monitor for the power sensor readings and slowly raise the draw from the card to determine this , but why risk it ? The draw is probably balanced over all three connectors .

    Best to give the card the full power the connectors are rated for and put your mind at ease . Either that, or down-voltage the card for ease of installation .
     
  14. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

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    #14
    No idea how about the 980Ti, but I can confirm that not all card will draw power evently. And different kind of loading may cause the card draw more power from different connectors. (e.g. OpenGL may made the card draw more power from one of the connector, but OpenCL cause the card draw more from another connector).
     
  15. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #15
    Okay. Now I just need to make sure the SATA ports will deliver enough power then...

    Did you (or your client) test this with the 980 Ti at 100% load? Will the SATA deliver enough power, so the card can run at a 100% load? Thanks again
     
  16. Machines macrumors 6502

    Machines

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    #16
    I successfully installed a stock PC Edition (with factory voltage) GTX 980 Ti card in a Nehalem Mac Pro with booster power provided by the following : 2 x motherboard mini 6 pin PCIe power connector to the video card's standard 8 pin connector with a splitter adapter cable AND 2 x SATA power HDD bay backplane connector to the video card's standard 6 pin connector with another splitter adapter cable . This installation will not work with a card that has two 8 pin power booster connectors . The card was placed under load and was stable . The two SATA backplane connectors did not exceed 25W each, for a max total of 50 W, running either a Heaven or Valley burn in test for several hours . It is in service at an architect's studio performing some sort of AR demonstrations . The client has reported no issues .
     
  17. MrHollywood macrumors newbie

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    Nov 7, 2016
    #17
    Hi. Just wondering if you installed the card, and how well does it perform in Final Cut Pro x while editing 4K video?

    I'd go with amd but I would like to move some apps which utilise cuda from PC so I have all work related programs on the Mac Pro. Thanks.
     
  18. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #18
    It works great in Final Cut. It's pretty fast, but I don't think it is AS fast as the nMP. Not sure as I don't have one.

    I've only experienced one crash because of the NVIDIA drivers, but other than that, it works great. Fantastic in games as well.
     
  19. MrHollywood macrumors newbie

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    Nov 7, 2016
    #19
    Thanks for replying quickly. What type of files do you edit with? Well presuming you do. Have you tried multilayer 4K. Also what gfx card did you upgrade from?

    I will be editing footage from a Sony a7sii

    Sorry for the questions. But I just want to make sure I am getting the right card, and info about this is quite limited. I already modified my psu to accept a card with an 8 pin
     
  20. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #20
    I bought the Mac Pro with the intention of putting a 980 Ti in it. It had an GT120, but I haven't used that. I edit 1080p from a Canon 7D, and 4K from a GoPro Hero5 as well as a Phantom 3 Professional. I have 2 layers of 4K at max. If I edit directly without converting to ProRes, the scrubbing is a bit choppy, and rendering takes some time. However it is much faster than my MacBook Pro for example. (which it definitely should be)

    If I convert to ProRes it's a whole other world. Damn that is fast. But ain't nobody got space fo dat.
     
  21. MrHollywood macrumors newbie

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    Nov 7, 2016
    #21
    Hey thanks for the info. I have decided thanks. Pro res lol what is the size again 1 gb for 20 second of footage on hq. Yeah just slightly too big. I already get good performance with my ati card but I think I will get the 980 seen as it sounds like I wouldn't lose performance.
     
  22. ifraaank thread starter macrumors regular

    ifraaank

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    #22
    I converted a couple of my 4K clips. Instantly filled my 512GB SSD :p
     
  23. macmaniac75 macrumors newbie

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    May 15, 2013
    #23
    I'm using a EVGA GTX 98P Ti SC+ with backplane in a fully loaded CnMP 4,1 upgraded in 5,1, powered only via the 2 6 pin connectors.
    It is fully working without any problem, both on osx 10.11.4 AND windows 10 with intense gaming, since my previous post here (http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/evga-gtx-980-ti-sc-in-cmp-5-1.1986525/) see my previous post. I had at the very begining of use one unexplained shutdown, but it never happened again.
    Please not that I'm not stress the card on os X compared to windows 10 gaming, only use of FCPx some times, some gaming, and photo edition on DXO Pro.
    on gaming on os x the card is often stressed with 80°C, 50-60% fan speed and 80% TDP during intense gaming sessions. Work like a charm.

    I did not want to use the SATA connectors in the optical bay as I already use them for 2 SSD (I'm using 6 SSD and 4 HD in the macPro)
     
  24. davebean macrumors newbie

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    Oct 13, 2016
    #24
    I've got a 5,1 and assuming that power is not an issue (planning on getting a separate power supply)
    1. is there a real difference between an overclocked 980 and a 980ti ?
    2. if I install an overclocked 980 (or any oc card) does it work at full speed automatically or do I need to install the web drivers so it goes full speed? I am strictly using this on OSX, I don't game at all.

    background, Ill be using this for Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop .. maybe Primere and FinalCut. Really looking for 4k and 5k video at this point

    Dave
     
  25. h9826790 macrumors 604

    h9826790

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    #25
    1) For LR / PS, I don't think it will make any difference, they are not GPU intensive anyway.

    2) If you don't install web driver, the card won't work at all (only black screen but nothing else)
     

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