iMac 07 graphics card questions

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by Southern, Sep 22, 2007.

  1. Southern macrumors regular


    May 15, 2007
    London, UK
    Hey guys, I'm a switcher and have the entry level iMac. So far it has been great for me, so I thought I'd give some games a go. So I downloaded the Doom 3 demo to see if it was any better than my previous 9600xt machine I was previously using (not much big surprise). Pretty awful speeds - like 20fps max at 800x600 medium settings and no advanced options (yeah yeah, I know - budget VGA and Doom3 likes Nvidia hardware better). But I digress.

    I downloaded the Aspyr Game Utility which scans your machine for hardware and judges whether you should be able to play Aspyr titles on your machine. However, when I got to the app, all I get is:

    Graphics card - unrecognised (0x94c8)

    So Aspyr can't understand my Mac's graphics card - EEK! Can anyone else confirm that this is a bug with the Aspyr app rather than with my Mac hardware please? If so, what should I do if it is my Mac that is at fault?

    Secondly, I was reading about the software update (my own mac is at the latest 1.1 release apparently) which contains graphics card updates and noting that they break some peoples iMacs - not mine it seems judging from Apple's forums - but also it actually degrades performance in games, rather than improve them. How often do Mac owners have to wait for graphics card updates via software update? I am more inclined to believe that it is merely graphics drivers at fault for poor performance in games (chess 3d runs awfully, for example).

    Also, if I were to run games in XP via bootcamp, would I see better speeds for PC-equivalent games yet only running in Windows owing to better drivers?

    Sorry for answering so many questions, but I have been googling around but have not dug up a set of satisfactory answers to these questions.
  2. BlizzardBomb macrumors 68030


    Jun 15, 2005
    I don't think the Doom 3 demo is a Universal Binary game. So your computer is having to emulate a PowerPC processor slowing the game down a lot. Your iMac will handle the full game (which is a UB) just fine.
  3. Stridder44 macrumors 68040


    Mar 24, 2003

    On top of that, the ATI drivers for the new iMacs are terrible. From what I understand, running the same game in Windows (on your iMac) you would see a HUGE difference (in a good way). Basically, Apple/ATI will come out with better drivers soon. Don't worry, you're not alone. A lot of people have been complaining about this.
  4. FreedomFighter macrumors member

    Jul 5, 2007
    Even though apple have said that they updated the imac's, is the ATI Radeon 2600 PRO any better than the X1600 in the last generation in terms of game performance and 3-d rendering?
  5. risc macrumors 68030


    Jul 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Australia
    Go have a look on they have plenty of benchmarks between the 2600 and 1600, and yes the 2600 is heaps better.
  6. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Although the OPs 2400XT will probably be the same if a little slower.
  7. Kosh66 macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2004
    Aspyr's utility probably hasn't been updated with the specs of the latest iMac. i wouldn't worry about it.
  8. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    Actually, 2600 in OSX is slightly slower than X1600 in previous models, while 2400 is much slower than X1600

    I dont know why, probably its just bad drivers... Makes me wonder, why Apple decided to put these cards in new iMacs? Would it have been better to stay with X1600?

    However, judging by results on barefeats, new radeons seem to shine in 2D stuff, like Motion and user interface, which makes R2x00 look better in my eyes.
  9. Southern thread starter macrumors regular


    May 15, 2007
    London, UK
    First of all, thanks for the speedy replies everyone, here is my response.

    It seems to me judging by your responses that these new Aluminium iMacs are so new that software developers haven't gotten it together to release updates and/or support to take into account the x2400 and x2600. Excuse my worried bleating that my iMac was somehow defective.

    Sure, while I don't have the x2600, I am hoping that, clock for clock, the x2400 I have is faster than my old 9600 and the previous generation x1600. When I bought this iMac, gaming was not going to be a priority (I hardly have any time to play games these days) so the machine was purely for media and web browsing, plus a little gaming on the side like Half Life 2 and Episode 2 via Bootcamp when Leopard comes out (I can wait, it's not like I haven't completed it before). The only other thing I want it to do is to play Guitar Hero 3, which I am quite fired up about :D

    No wonder Doom 3 ran so slow on my iMac then - it ran slower than on my previous AthlonXP 2500+ / 1Gb DDR / 9600XT system, which is really saying something! I guess I should just stick to universal binaries then - half of the reason why I wanted the Aspyr thing to tell me what I could and couldn't run. I have lodged a query with them and I will report back my findings when they answer me.

    In short, Apple need to cosy up to ATI more and get these drivers updated so we can enjoy faster gaming experience.

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