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Mac Pro 2009 serious power(breaker) issue? Keep dual Radeon 5770s? OS X ver truth?


macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 25, 2010
My main setup I rely on for professional, very high end media work is a 2009 Mac Pro Quad Core Xeon.. I know, I can do a LOT better. But I really messed up my life, and considering I only just turned 26, and I dropped out of college cause it was wasting my time for the type of mind and abilities I have with what I want to do....sorry, point is, even after dropping out, I was given by my dad basically carte blanche (not really but for myself it might as well have been..).

He just told me to please not make him regret giving me this very kind trust and faith in my ability and all that stuff... and that he preferred that for whatever start-up or whatever business or thing I decided to launch to make a living, that I just perhaps keep things under $100,000.

Im not an *******, and I appreciated this generosity obviously, so I made a point to spend much less than this, about half or so.... And for 2012 and some of 2013 I had a great thing going, and of course, got to indulge in working with the HIGHEST END, FASTEST and BEST mulit-Apple setups for the work I was doing and it was.. awesome?

Now, life happens the way its going to , and I take responsibility for ****ing up badly... I got super depressed, got into doing a ton of drugs daily I don't know how I actually functioned to pull off anything with clients such as ____ and ____. The corrupt doctor thing and perceptions for dayyys don't help either.

So youuuu get the picture.

Now I am sitting here modest, humbled and starting over again in a new part of the country, and doing much better.

So, I am not even complaining for a second about being stuck with compared to what I HAD and completely blew when I had my **** up and life break down near the end of 2013, losing all my 50+ grand of Apple professional workstations and customized hardware and fiber storage, networking etc etc...

Lesson learned!!! Now I'm like you peasants !!

HAHA just kidding. I really am...

But please if anyone can take me seriously at all now, since I do get some credit for being able to admit some very very painful, embarrassing and intense failure, and don't expect or want anything handed to me like that again....

At the moment, I am running two of the ATI Radeon 5770's in this 2009 Mac Pro Quad Core Xeon 2.66ghz machine, with an SSD for boot OS and apps, a 2TB mirrored RAID-0 (two 2tb sata drives), a 3TB western digital black for maintaining a (****** but better than nothing) constant backup of the important folder parts of my system.... and then a PciE SSD booster card, not sure if it actually increases the speeds of the little 256gb SSD that it on board? But at least it lets me have another drive in there that is fast and not creating much heat or whatever

Also, sucks but I am only working with 16gb ECC OWC RAM for now, but I make it work (barely) between my very demanding high end workflow...

The machine is actually NOT THAT BAD surprisingly, and I am making due running 4K RAW video / 14bit uncompressed RAW tens of thousands of files , post processing them into eventually motion picture quality video...

Now, I would say the biggest issue I have is with my GPU situation. Makes sense?

I can complete work... but dammit it is annoying a lot of the time - too many crashing or just overwhelmed GPUs to the max especially running big color correcting and processing jobs in DaVinci Resolve 11 .

Other programs I routinely use and rely on that can be heavy demanding, and really don't run how they need to for this modern world and my work schedule and demands:

- Cinema 4D R16 studio and everything else (Runs fine, but render times even tweaked and optimized settings greatly shuoldbe MUCH better and faster.... takes too long to render a 1080p 3D photorealistic composite into video of 60 seconds long for example then it should. And for these, I CANT really just turn off a bunch of the obvious options for settings in lighting and openGL based **** mostly.... cause the client is expecting that REALLY EXPENSIVE HIGH END looking work.. I know, boo hoo for me..

- Just After Effects CC 2014, even Premiere Pro with the 4K RAW and RAW 14bit uncompressed , un-touched since out of the camera (aka virgin perfect master workflow :cool:)

And just it seems that I am GETTING OWNED because of lack of /no CUDA mojo behind this setup? Sound about right? Same with Open GL right?

Question is, now that I don't have $100,000 or even $5000 right now hahaha.... and am back to being a normal broke(ish) 26 year old who isn't ready to be an adult but needs to.. (yea, u know what i mean)


No, not for my life advice, haha. Thanks though...

But for 1.) I have five other pretty much identical Mac Pros , so yeah I know i could sell everything and get something that is going to be BEAST and the newest of the best and fastest technology on the planet for dealing with the increasingly ridiculously high quality and demands of media I exclusively need to work with... but lets hold off on that, I am going to make things work with these old machines for a while.

2.) Am I really doing ANYTHING positive by having two or dual Radeon 5770s in my main machine that I am using right now? Or is it just SUCKING MAD AMOUNTS OF ENERGY ? Honestly, I am asking because my office/studio.. which goes to question #3..

3.) Lately, I have this HUGE problem where I am working in my studio office where my STUPID power is always shutting off suddenly!! More specially, the circuit breakers flip and I almost LOSE IT and break everything but then I remember my age and calm down and act like a professional... but honestly its gone on too long! It is just these ACIH (if thats right something like that?) 3 or 4 specific breaker switches that flip. ?

(which is a luxury apartment that is weird shaped, and better for an office and studio, since I just began hooking up with this super hot girl in the floor above me... and then she ended up being a super awesome person, as well s being sexy AF haha, and just down to put up with someone ridiculous as me = which is a mix of nerd and stud, and Dew Tour (Breckenridge, Colorado) freestyle skier slopestyle and big air athlete, and very highly functional drug addict, but also intellectual with passion , finally mixed with artist and writer that had 1 success and then just procrastinated finishing my next book that i promised , but got too much into Oxy30s and thought I wrote a master piece during all my time spent posted up with my Macbook, bottle of adderall, bunch of Roxicodone , and some heroin + espresso and wine... no i don't use needles!! NEVER. Gross. Just a little dabbling to keep the creative and cognitive pieces together in a way that will be relevant to those who need to pay me... BUT anyways I just was saying that I ended up moving up into my girlfriends slightly nicer apartment than mine upstairs, and then turning mine into a real office with 30 foot greenscreen shooting space and also office space + conference room etc... 1 year leases suck... oh well)

*** Obviously other than directing power from just one or two wall outlets, I mean this place is NOT cheap, and I am not happy with this. Yes, I will deal with the people here tomorrow, but I am working now and need this to not happen...****

I KNOW the mac pro 2009s and around that era generally draw tons of power compared to other machines , and the new modern mac pro. But Really? Enough to flip off half the godamn power in an apartment that really is 2 years old so kind of BRAND NEW and high-end, should be able to handle 15 mac pros running like a render farm and still be fine...

So, I dontk now, if you have any advice on how to stop this , I would be grateful for ever.

Also to the original question: Should I keep both of the graphics cards in?

I know, I am trying to switch at least till I earn the right to justify just upgrading everything to truly what is the fastest and most efficient machines and networked office for top-shelf grade professional studio media...

But till then, am I benefiting from dual 5770s? Or should I take out one , and put in the ummm GTX something (sorry I can't remember.. the one that came with this one 2009 quad core mac pro system.. it has like 512gb vram and SOME very limited Cuda operation , not a lot though it still doesn't run Resolve 11 very well, and actually crashes all the time.

So, I am thinking that first of all, this mac pro system I'm on now that is the problem with the circuit breakers flipping off all the time and making me GO IGNANT and SCREAM AND THROW THINGS ACROSS THE ROOM AT INTERNS HEADS (stupid college kids.... love the irony, i drop off and I'm their boss, silly, but go get that piece of paper that confirms in yourself that you are mediocrely capable of something! )

ANd I should probably... if/when I can afford soon (this is a question) try and just swap out some more of my drives for SSDs to run internal since big capacity ones are getting cheap now.... but more importantly, I should probably just get rid of both of the 5770s and put in 1 badass GPU , correct??

If I am right, what card would you recommend? Lets keep the price tag under $800, but WAYYY RATHER have the max cost for a new GPU be $400-600 , yeah that would be a lot nicer on my pockets.

I am just too stressed to deal with anymore research on this stuff. I know plenty of what I am assuming people are going to suggest, but at the same time, I failed REALLY EPICLY , and I realize most kids don't get rewarded with unlimited shopping spree to start whatever they want , and then mess it up... and because I was so ashamed left it back with my dad, and let him keep it all... or do whatever.

But staying positive, and past that!

Oh, and I am running two monitors, not ideal but fine for now - a 23" 1080p apple cinema display, and a matching size Dell 1080p cinema display (idk it was baller AF when it was released whenever that was, still works for what I do.. form ow)

So any tips for having my machine to stop RAPING POWER like whoa... other than ones that are obvious and i have already done... would be awesome too!

But mostly a decision about how to optimize this 2009 mac pro for a very modest cost, and in the most significant-boost way is great.

For storage, it blows that there isn't really anything besides Fiber that is on the level I need to not have to spend SO Much time wasted on certain projects that are huge in transferring , rendering and working with occasionally full-scale quality/size files....

But to summarize/conclude?:

1. new GPU , something with at least 2GB of ram, preferably dual but maybe not (?) , and LOADED with as MUCH cuda, openGL, support and all those goodies maxed out that are going to REALLY EFFECT shading of different kids, RAW video and 4K processing of w/e , and the HUGE amount I rely on DaVinci Resolve for almost all my projects.

Sorry about this post, I am just so tired and overstressed and I ate the rest of this THC sour watermelons that this store next block down from was selling for $10 special for 1000mg... Haha ironic how its the only healthy, natural, and organic harmess substance that has me out of my "high in a working zoned way" to just stoned like I am 15 again and can't be on this computer anymore.... time to go upstairs and leave the office and find my girl and eat this whole pint of this special, rare mango pure Gelato sorbee , its absolutely unreliable... I recommend it. I forget that name.

I wish I could just know what to do! I mean I do, actually I am a ridiculously knowledgeable and vastly highly adept person , to the point where its ridiculous///

No one told me life was this hard and ****, its like thanks... haha.

But yah, please earn some karma and help me out here with some quetsions and just insight and ****, and I might even donate you some paypal or give you some free expensive extra Apple/other hardware/software when I've figured out what to do .... and have the $ to make the right moves

Thanks guys.

ALSO OOOPS: I decided to keep my office to OS X 10.9.5... cause i don't trust this Yosemite thing... i just don't like it , or what I've heard and seen and used of it.

No, I don't care for the changes that are purely aesthetic, that can go S a D...

So truly is there ANY REAL reason for a tiny but highly premium media starting biz as mine, or even just as an individual... to upgrade my os x up to 10.10 anytime soon??

I am going to NOT do that until I hear someone tell me a really GOOD reason that I can confirm. If you understand.....

Where are you MR JOBS!!!! **** come back!!

PS. MODS: I promise next time I post here, I won't be 16 hours+ non stop working on the most complex ******** 3D compositing into a stupid scene that this client HAS to have, and this is why i refuse to work with rappers even when they get a lot of money , and enough to afford me suffering over here to make them look 100000x more cool than they are in real life. Including CGI polar bear that needs to be truly environmentally interactively accurate with lighting and shadows , and etc.

I cannot wait to just have to handle 1 thing, not do everything myself.

In the meantime, lets get this machine running well so there is no more pain!

Im going to get some sleep. Ill be embarrassed for my behavior - aka ranting here , but it is what it is.

Please have some empathy.

Thanks, and serious about rewarding those who show their kindness and genuine caring with helping me in these trying times with advice and some light on the issues and questions i am pondering.

Goodnight. :)


*PLEASE don't delete my thread!! Sorry if there is a lot of nonsense and irrelevant content mixed in, but please you must understand about being extremely deliriously tired. I just have no other time I would get around to asking this very important quetion(s).

And same goes with the perhaps inappropriate content, but I have no time to edit that and don't believe in censoring for the sake of keeping a true democracy spirit alive even in the internet on a forum for nerds, but cool & attractive ones like myself.

*And finally, I do not at all condone or recommend any drug use or abuse.

Thank you for being the most awesome forum website about Apple related products on the entire internet and I will donate a decent large sum of money once I get this integrated complete service media/marketing/dev./digital cinema services & promotional solutions licensed business/agency running..... within then ext 6 months.

Okay? And this thread will really help me get there quicker, and regain my money and life... since there are too many idiots elsewhere.

Again I <3 mods.

Thank you in advance. :apple:
Last edited by a moderator:


macrumors regular
Oct 30, 2013
TL;DR - just kidding xD

Well, keeping all of your personal stuff by side - you said you need a REALLY GOOD reason in order to upgrade to Yosemite. Now, I personally am absolutely not a fan of Yosemite, heck, I'd still use Snow Leopard if I could, but the GTX 970 and 980 seem like a pretty nice reason to upgrade.

Then, on the other hand they seem to be quite "glitchy" still. But maybe I'm wrong here. I am still using 10.8.5, so I never read much into the 9xx series as they only work on 10.10 anyways.

Another option would be the GTX 780. If you correctly install all of the drivers it should pretty much work out of the box. The 3GB version seems to be needing 10.8.3, while the 6GB version needs atleast 10.9.3 in order to work properly.

How important is the bootscreen to you? I guess you don't dual boot into Windows etc., thus you don't desperately need a flashed card enabling you PCI-e 2.0 speeds there.

So you could get a regular "windows" card, install all the needed drivers, pop the card in and you should be good to go.

However, if you need your bootscreen and/or windows - check out

I personally would check out the GTX 780 if I were you ;)

Hope I could help you a bit. I'm still quite the GPU noob myself, so take everything I said with a grain of salt ;)

And good luck with getting your life sorted! :)


macrumors 68020
Nov 2, 2011
The Netherlands
Besides all internal upgrades for your MP 2009, invest in an UPS! That will get your mind of the circuit breakers issues!

All the best to you and keep safe!



macrumors 65816
Dec 22, 2012
Besides all internal upgrades for your MP 2009, invest in an UPS! That will get your mind of the circuit breakers issues!

+1 You can buy a used server strength rack mount UPS for peanuts as they are too big & ugly for home use.


macrumors newbie
Mar 3, 2015
Los Angeles
based on what you've said, the dual 5770s are the main bottleneck in your system (memory at only 16gb is probably also an issue -- should get that up to 32 or 64gb stat), and the 5770s are a HUGE bottleneck for what you're trying to do. as others have mentioned, sounds like you should get a card that supports CUDA (nVIDIA only). the 5770s actually have a decent resale value, so you can easily trade up to a gtx 680 (flashed for mac efi support) for no additional cost
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