Recommendation for energy saving graphics card

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by earthwriter, Jun 4, 2017.

  1. earthwriter, Jun 4, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2017

    earthwriter macrumors newbie


    May 7, 2017
    We need a recommendation for preferably a Radeon Mac Graphics Card, the non Mac 7850 we have it is this one is a power hog, we have checked the wattage and it runs around 260 watts or more but VS. the stock Nvidia 7300 GT it uses less. We have been reading that the Radeon HD 5770 is fairly energy efficient, can anyone confirm this or recommend better? We don't mind giving up the 2gb card for 1gb if it's going to run more efficient. Our current configuration is Mac Pro 2006 2.1 upgrade with 8 core upgrade running El Capitan 10.11.6 So far we have only found these benchmarks
    to compare with but there is no mention of the HD 7850.
  2. pb69 macrumors member


    May 5, 2017
    New Mexico
    i would like to know also. I'm still running a GT120 in my 2009 with 5,1 firmware upgrade. The HD 7850 is still very capable but the power consumption, heat and cooling fan noise are not the best. I say that because I have a used the same HD 6850 with dual fans in a several pc builds for the past 4 years.
  3. h9826790 macrumors G4


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    A 7850 draw 260W???

    I think you mean the overall power consumption, but not the GPU. The reference 7850 should just draw ~100W (max) and idle at about ~10W.

    Anyway, if you running Sierra and want a OOTB low power consumption card, RX460 is a good choice.
  4. saulinpa macrumors 6502a

    Jun 15, 2008
    My 5770 still pumps out hot air even when at idle.

    If you don't need boot screens how about an RX 460? But I do think that it needs Sierra.
  5. zoltm macrumors newbie

    May 9, 2017
    So what would be the drawback if I keep a GT120 in the slow PCI slot 4 while keeping the RX460 in PCI slot one, would that be an OOTB solution to have both the boot screen and a relatively updated AMD card?
  6. h9826790 macrumors G4


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    That should be a OOTB boot screen solution.

    The down side most likely about how you manage the monitor(s), or higher power consumption because the GT120 is always there drawing power.

    The RX460 can only serve the monitor that connect to it. Therefore, the monitor that connect to the GT120 may not able to benefit from the RX460. (RX460 can still do the compute task regardless if any monitor connected to it.

    So, If you only plan to use one monitor, you can to make a switch in between, or keep pulling and plugging the monitor to different card depends on what you need.

    If you plan to use 2 monitors, then only the screen connected to the GT120 can show both screen. And only the monitor connected to the RX460 will be accelerated by it.
  7. earthwriter thread starter macrumors newbie


    May 7, 2017
    RX 460 pre flashed for osx?
    --- Post Merged, Jun 22, 2017 ---
    Yes actually at idle without any kind of load it's running around 260W overall the PSU but no idea what the 7850 is drawing if you say it's 10W your probably right. as for the RX460 is that Mac card or would it have to be flashed to have a boot screen, not to mention they are in short supply due to the crypto mining issue.
  8. fendersrule, Jun 22, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2017

    fendersrule macrumors 6502

    Oct 9, 2008
    I just posted that the 5770 is an efficient card for it's time. I don't know if that still stands true for today. I would think that the power leads would tell a story in how much card the power is least logic tells me.

    4870 = 2x 6 pins.
    7950 = 2x 6 pins.
    7970 = 1x6 pin, 1x8pin.
    7850 = 1x 6 pin.
    5770 = 1x 6 pin.

    That should tell you a story...

    7850 is like what, 135w TDP @ idle?
    5770 is @ 103w TDP idle. Yes, efficient, I was right.

    The 5770 I would expect would put out less overall wattage.

    But, 135w TDP is actually very low already. I think you have something else you should worry about. Of course the GT120 uses less, because it has NO power connectors. It's also a crappy-ass card. If you don't game ever, then sure, use a GT120. That's a card that won't exceed 75w @ idle.

    Perhaps consider that it's your Mac Pro that's not energy efficient. I can't honestly say that you'll have night and day different numbers going from a 7850 to a GT120.
  9. h9826790 macrumors G4


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    The connector only tell the possible max draw, nothing really related to the actual power draw, especially during idle. If any card drawing 100W during idle, that's an extreme inefficient card.

    e.g. Both reference 4870 and 7950 use the same dual 6pin design. But 4870's idle power draw is about 3x more than 7950.
  10. pigsyn macrumors member


    Aug 14, 2015
    You mean full stress test right ? 5770 idle is 20w ...

Share This Page