My 7950 Just Died :(

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
So, as the title says, my Sapphire 7950 Mac edition just died in spectacular fashion, and now I'm in need of advice:

So, I've got a 4,1 that's been flashed to 5,1. What can I upgrade to that allows me to keep my boot screen, doesn't require an external PSU and won't cost me my firstborn? Or am I basically out of luck?

Apologies if people are asking this all the time but I haven't looked into this stuff since early 2013 and I don't even know if modern cards can be made to work with ye olde cheese-graters.
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
What do you use your machine for?
for work: Xcode, a bit of Photoshop and Illustrator, maybe some light 3D and CAD work but nothing that would require something like a FirePro.

For Fun: Booting it into windows for gaming.

Basically I wouldn't be replacing the 7950 if it hadn't croaked on me.
 
Jul 4, 2015
4,488
2,548
Paris
The RX470 is a good balance but needs Sierra.

Used GTX970 offers similar price and performance but you have to deal with finicky driver updates and bugs.
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
As @ActionableMango said, GTX680 and R9 280(X) (or again 7950/70) is the only DIY option that will give you bootscreens after flashing.

If you want to buy finished product and newer cards, search MacVidCards (they also have EU partner ).
Awesomesauce, didn't know MVC had a UK outlet (I'm more than happy to take advantage of the slump in Sterling). The 280 is basically a rebranded 7970, right?

(Also, I get that it's silly wanting a boot screen, but if I didn't like things like that, I'd just buy a PC)
 

LightBulbFun

macrumors 68020
Nov 17, 2013
2,299
2,233
London UK
Just want to point out that last I checked to get the RX 470 working under sierra you do have to mod the Driver for the card (add the device id) and that this can end up broken like nvidia web drivers after an OS update. also a PC RX470 will not show any sort of loading screen you will just be at a blank screen till your login window pops up or your desktop. (This last bit is true for any PC card) only the RX 460 works OOB in sierra
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
Just want to point out that last I checked to get the RX 470 working under sierra you do have to mod the Driver for the card (add the device id) and that this can end up broken like nvidia web drivers after an OS update. also a PC RX470 will not show any sort of loading screen you will just be at a blank screen till your login window pops up or your desktop. (This last bit is true for any PC card) only the RX 460 works OOB in sierra
Which kinda sucks, considering that from what I'm reading, the 460 seems significantly less powerful than my old 7950. Guess you get what you pay for though.
 

h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
14,270
6,866
Hong Kong
Just want to point out that last I checked to get the RX 470 working under sierra you do have to mod the Driver for the card (add the device id) and that this can end up broken like nvidia web drivers after an OS update. also a PC RX470 will not show any sort of loading screen you will just be at a blank screen till your login window pops up or your desktop. (This last bit is true for any PC card) only the RX 460 works OOB in sierra
Not entirely correct. For the current MacOS (10.12.1 official release).

The RX460 will show the loading screen (at the very beginning), and able to use recovery partition.

In fact, AFAIK, only the card has OSX driver support can use the recovery partition now, a flashed card but need 3rd party driver (e.g. Maxwell card) may shows nothing in the recovery partition.

I didn't have any unsupported card. However, I did test the loading screen (and recovery partition) by switching my 7950 to the PC VBIOS, it works flawlessly.

So, the boot screen now is only for choosing the boot partition, which can be done by hotkey, or via system preference.
 
Jul 4, 2015
4,488
2,548
Paris
Just want to point out that last I checked to get the RX 470 working under sierra you do have to mod the Driver for the card (add the device id) and that this can end up broken like nvidia web drivers after an OS update. also a PC RX470 will not show any sort of loading screen you will just be at a blank screen till your login window pops up or your desktop. (This last bit is true for any PC card) only the RX 460 works OOB in sierra
CORRECTION time.

RX470 can load Sierra after any update and adding the device ID takes 30 seconds.

Polaris cards are showing the loading screen with the Apple logo.
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
CORRECTION time.

RX470 can load Sierra after any update and adding the device ID takes 30 seconds.

Polaris cards are showing the loading screen with the Apple logo.
So, just to be straight here, you're saying that if I pick up a 470 and I'm running Sierra, I can install it and all I'll lose out on is the boot volume screen?
 

LightBulbFun

macrumors 68020
Nov 17, 2013
2,299
2,233
London UK
CORRECTION time.

RX470 can load Sierra after any update and adding the device ID takes 30 seconds.

Polaris cards are showing the loading screen with the Apple logo.
Depending on your system it takes 30 seconds to install an Nvidia web driver :) if you are looking for a true OOB Card the RX470 is not currently one to get. also Polaris 10 cards could end up like how GCN 1.1 and cayman cards ended up if apple only uses Polaris 11
 
Jul 4, 2015
4,488
2,548
Paris
Depending on your system it takes 30 seconds to install an Nvidia web driver :) if you are looking for a true OOB Card the RX470 is not currently one to get. also Polaris 10 cards could end up like how GCN 1.1 and cayman cards ended up if apple only uses Polaris 11
Oh come on. Puleeze don't the Nvidia web driver install compared to the Polaris mod. The web driver issues have created hundreds of threads of warnings and panic attacks.
[doublepost=1477936617][/doublepost]
So, just to be straight here, you're saying that if I pick up a 470 and I'm running Sierra, I can install it and all I'll lose out on is the boot volume screen?
You lose the boot selection and SIP. You get the loading screen and the OS boots after any Sierra update - then you just add the device ID again, but that only needs to be done if the Sierra update also updated the 4100.kext. If it didn't update the kext then you won't need to mod anything.
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
Depending on your system it takes 30 seconds to install an Nvidia web driver :) if you are looking for a true OOB Card the RX470 is not currently one to get. also Polaris 10 cards could end up like how GCN 1.1 and cayman cards ended up if apple only uses Polaris 11
Yea but the driver install is just a one time deal though, right? As for it not working OOB, I'm I'm not above a bit of hacking.
[doublepost=1477936939][/doublepost]
Oh come on. Puleeze don't the Nvidia web driver install compared to the Polaris mod. The web driver issues have created hundreds of threads of warnings and panic attacks.
[doublepost=1477936617][/doublepost]

You lose the boot selection and SIP. You get the loading screen and the OS boots after any Sierra update - then you just add the device ID again, but that only needs to be done if the Sierra update also updated the 4100.kext. If it didn't update the kext then you won't need to mod anything.
Heh, I had to switch SIP off anyway because of an Xcode bug that was blocking the simulator from running.
 
Jul 4, 2015
4,488
2,548
Paris
Yea but the driver install is just a one time deal though, right? As for it not working OOB, I'm I'm not above a bit of hacking.
[doublepost=1477936939][/doublepost]
Nvidia's driver can be a pain because unless you pay ridic money for that EFI mod (which is basically like paying for sometime to patch warez) then you need a secondary Apple card to install the drivers, open your Mac and then install the card again. Even minor security updates break the Nvidia web drivers. Then when you get that out of the way you realise the web drivers are full of OpenCL bugs and don't perform anything like their Windows counterparts, which defeats the purpose of them in the first place.

So the best choice for a cMP is a midrange card with native or close to native macOS support. Anything else is a waste.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ActionableMango

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
Nvidia's driver can be a pain because unless you pay ridic money for that EFI mod (which is basically like paying for sometime to patch warez) then you need a secondary Apple card to install the drivers, open your Mac and then install the card again. Even minor security updates break the Nvidia web drivers. Then when you get that out of the way you realise the web drivers are full of OpenCL bugs and don't perform anything like their Windows counterparts, which defeats the purpose of them in the first place.

So the best choice for a cMP is a midrange card with native or close to native macOS support. Anything else is a waste.
Ugh, something tells me that I'm going to end up looking for another 7950 to flash.
 

Moogintroll

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 15, 2004
35
0
Dublin, Ireland
Lol. It's a good card for general use.
I agree, it's served me well (until last night) The only complaint being the need to run the OpenGL extension viewer benchmark to get the fans to behave.

I figured it was worth using its demise to see if an upgrade was viable though. Guess it's more bother than it's worth. Why the hell did Apple have to introduce the trashcan?
 
Jul 4, 2015
4,488
2,548
Paris
I agree, it's served me well (until last night) The only complaint being the need to run the OpenGL extension viewer benchmark to get the fans to behave.
Th fans kick off with newer AMD and Nvidia cards too. This is down to Apple's SMC not being very compatible with new hardware. They don't quite speak the same lingo to each other.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,521
6,774
The only complaint being the need to run the OpenGL extension viewer benchmark to get the fans to behave.
You can fix that with MacsFanControl. @h9826790 has instructions somewhere.

if I pick up a 470 and I'm running Sierra, I can install it and all I'll lose out on is the boot volume screen?
No it's not just boot screens, it's like a dozen things. For example you wouldn't have been able to do your 4,1 to 5,1 flash without an EFI card. GPU audio. PCIe 2.0. Easy Maxwell web driver updates. Some other stuff.

Whether or not those things are important to you varies I suppose.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: LightBulbFun

AlexMaximus

macrumors 6502a
Aug 15, 2006
914
281
A400M Base
Nvidia's driver can be a pain because unless you pay ridic money for that EFI mod (which is basically like paying for sometime to patch warez) then you need a secondary Apple card to install the drivers, open your Mac and then install the card again. Even minor security updates break the Nvidia web drivers. Then when you get that out of the way you realise the web drivers are full of OpenCL bugs and don't perform anything like their Windows counterparts, which defeats the purpose of them in the first place.

So the best choice for a cMP is a midrange card with native or close to native macOS support. Anything else is a waste.
Wow! I did not know that. Thanks for the heads up on the web driver issue. Maybe you can give me your opinion regarding a Sierra Upgrade on my MP 5,1. So far everything works really great for me on El Capitan. My card however is a flashed version with a working Apple logo on startup. I run my HTC Vive from bootcamp on Win7. In case I would upgrade to the new Sierra MacOS, do you think I will encounter some trouble? Could an upgrade to Sierra screw up my Win7 bootcamp partition ?(I hope not, otherwise I just keep everything on El Capitan - plus I am not sure if HP will issue a new driver for my first version HP envy printer..)

Cheers
[doublepost=1477947066][/doublepost]
Ugh, something tells me that I'm going to end up looking for another 7950 to flash.
A nice overview regarding performance compared to other options may give you this article here:

http://barefeats.com/sierra_rx480.html


:)
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.