Options for Video Card in 2006 Mac Pro 1.1

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by nick718, Feb 2, 2011.

  1. nick718 macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2007
    Hi Everyone,

    Tonight the lackluster ATI 1900 that came in my Mac Pro 1.1 finally **** the bed. It has always run hot, ots of fan, so no surprise that it died. I need a new video card. I would like to buy a new Apple supported card, but I'd also like to avoid ATI because I've hard bad things. I am not opposed to flashing a PC video card, but not sure where to start or even if it is possible given that this Mac Pro is my only desktop machine.

    So my questions are as follow:

    1) Which OEM cards ar available for this model for purchase today (new).
    2) Which PC NVIDIA cards will work in this model and can I flash them with just this machine?
    3) If 2, where can I find instructions on how to do this?

    I've been reading all night and have found no solid answers on my options here. I have also looked for a used 8800GT, but all of the ones on eBay seem to be flashed PC versions, so in that case, I'd rather save the money and od it myself.

    Thanks a ton!
  2. Mackilroy macrumors 68040


    Jun 29, 2006
    What bad things have you heard? ATI is extremely reliable - moreso for me than NVIDIA ever was.

    As far as your NVIDIA options go, there's the 7300 GT, 8800 GT, GTX 285, and Quadro 4000. The first three are very hard to find, and the last one is expensive.
  3. nick718 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2007
    It's not so much that I've heard bad things as that this 1900 is the second one (first replaced by apple care, which is now over), so two dead cards makes me weary. The sad truth seems to be that ATI might be me only option. Apparently the 5770 works fine in the Mac Pro 1.1, are there any others ATIs that I can buy new that are a bit cheaper?
  4. monokakata macrumors 68000


    May 8, 2008
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    If the ATI 3870's still on the market, it might be worth a look.

    I'm running one in my Mac Pro 1,1 and it's been fine. Got it from OWC a couple of years ago.

    Prices might be right down there now.
  5. Rustus Maximus macrumors 6502

    Rustus Maximus

    Jan 15, 2003
    I'm sporting an ATI 5770 in my Mac Pro 1,1 right now. Runs like a champ, easily handling everything I've thrown at it all the while staying very quiet. I think it's a solid card for the eldest of the Mac Pro line.
  6. jeanlain macrumors 65816

    Mar 14, 2009
    Forget about nVidia cards (they won't work) or older ATI (3870), your best options right now if probably the radeon HD 5770. The 5870 is quite expensive, and given your relatively weak CPU, if might be an overkill (unless you play games at 4k resolution).
  7. Graeme43 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 11, 2006
    Great Britain (Glasgow)
    I got a 4850 for my Mac Pro and its fine :) :D and how does a Mac Pro 1,1 have a weak CPU? Its a beast!
  8. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    Compared to the Nehalem based CPU's you get these days, those processors are indeed fairly weak. No wonder, they are more than 4 years old. What did you expect?
  9. hwojtek macrumors 65816


    Jan 26, 2008
    Poznan, Poland
    Just recently I've put a flashed ATI4870 1GB into my 1,1 (using a custom EFI bios made from the original with the EFI part injected) and it works like a charm. Quite cheap too, less than $100 on local auction site. This GPU is well balanced with the computing power of my dual 2 GHz machine (runs Civ V in full details in 1080p no hiccups).

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