Mac Pro Graphics cards

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by paulg1979, Feb 19, 2009.

  1. paulg1979 macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2006
    Hi all,

    Just bought a new Mac Pro from Apple and awaiting delivery.

    I've always been an iMac man so upgrading is all new to me.

    When ordering I opted for the 8800GT but have heard a few bad things about this card (unless its gaming) and have seen a lot of people replacing it with the Radeon 3870.

    Would this be a worthwhile upgrade? I'm not a gamer but do some CS4 work.

    Could I run both?
  2. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Look for BENCHMARKS, not "I heard" "he said", etc.
    and other sites offers benchmarks
  3. junior77 macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2007
    There are some documented improvements with the Radeo 3870 vs. the 8800GT for core image. However, if you have one, I wouldn't necessarily switch to the other as the difference (to me) does not justify the additional cost. I would wait it out for the next generation video card when the Nehalem Mac Pro's become available. Granted, there's no guarantee it will be backward compatible, or if one will even be made available as a stand-alone graphics card, but I would hope so.
  4. AdiosVista macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2008
    Don't bother swapping for the 3870, the differences are so minimal. The 3870 is slightly better for applications while the 8800gt is a little better for gaming but you will not see a huge gain either way. Not to mention, every 3870 I got had the loud fan noise (look it up, it is VERY COMMON with this card) so it was a long process and more money to add a fanless cooler before I could even use the 3870. PLUS, if Apple ever releases the new Mac Pros that everyone has been waiting ages for, they will come with better cards that we can hopefully upgrade the previous gen machines with as well. Keep the 8800gt and there's no point to running both cards unless you want to start running multiple displays.
  5. paulg1979 thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2006
    Thanks for the info. Think I will wait then. To be honest it seems like this new Mac Pro will be a while yet

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