Timing on new graphics cards from Apple ?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by gjarold, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. gjarold macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    #1
    I have a 2009 octo mac pro and I really, really need a single-height card with 3 or 4 mini displayport outputs on it.

    Currently there is NO three-port option of any kind available in single height - you have to go dual height and one of the ports is DL-DVI.

    These cards (eyefinity, etc.) have been out for a LONG time now - do we have any guesses as to when the extremely anemic, getting older every day, very sparse-port-options cards will be refreshed ?

    How often do they do this ?
     
  2. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #2
    Graphics cards are usually updated when the Mac Pro is updated.
     
  3. Cindori macrumors 68040

    Cindori

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #3
    Whaaat, old GPU's you say?


    Welcome to Mac Pro. Where we get technology one year later then everybody else.
     
  4. gjarold thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #4
    I'm not really complaining about the old GPUs, per se, but mainly the lack of any high-port cards.

    Because the three port cards are double height, you really are limited - maybe 8 outputs total ? (two duals and one gt120 ?) and three of those outputs will be DVI.

    So yeah, I have the same complaints in general as everyone does, but in reality, all I need is a single-height card with 3 (or 4) MDPs on it ... that's not exactly crazy these days ...

    What card options came with the recently updated mac pros ? Anything ?
     
  5. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #5
    The demand for massively multiple output cards on the Mac is pretty low. Probably your best chance is ATI releasing them directly.

    Does ATI even make a >3 port output card that's single height?

    5770/5870.
     
  6. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 27, 2010
    #6
    Too bad you can't get an eyefinity 12 card for OS X eh?

    Seriously, what do you need more than 8 MDPs for?
     
  7. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    They do. It's called Eyefinity 5 (based on 5770) and is the smaller brother of the Eyefinity 6 (based on 5870).

    However, although the card itself is single height, most manufacturers ship them with a double slot cooler. There should be third party single slot coolers available, though. The 5770 itself is by no means a card that demands massive cooling constructions, so single slot is absolutely doable.
     
  8. gjarold thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #8
    Since OSX already supports the 5770, would the eyefinity 5 work, out of the box (supported) in OSX ?

    That would be great...
     
  9. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #9
    No.

    Still, you can get 9 monitors:
    5770 1,2,3
    GT120 4,5
    GT120 6,7
    GT120 8,9

    9 isn't enough???
     
  10. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #10
    Nope, it's still a different card.
     
  11. gjarold thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #11
    Are you sure ? Doesn't the 5770 take two slots, and thus I can only get 2 gt120s in that mix ?

    Further, even if I can do the setup you suggest, only 5 of those are MDP connections, so its an adaptor mess, etc. Even if what you suggest works, you can't even get 6 total MDP outputs on a mac pro ...
     
  12. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #12
    I'm pretty sure the first slot in the Mac Pro is double wide itself... So there are still three slots left.
     
  13. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #13
    You said you "really, really need a single-height card with 3 or 4 mini displayport outputs on it". My suggestion is a 5770 and one inexpensive DVI to MDP adapter from monoprice. You'll have one card, it will take one slot (the double wide slot), and you'll have 3 MDP connectors.

    Yes, I'm sure it will fit. First slot is double wide.

    Wait, you need 6? You said you wanted 3 or 4. But whatever, either use inexpensive adapters from monoprice or get monitors with some flexible input methods.

    There's a workable solution now or you can wait for an imaginary Apple Eyefinity 5 or 6 that doesn't exist and probably never will.
     
  14. gjarold thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #14
    I said I needed 3 or 4 MDP on a _single card_, and would then buy two of those.

    I have 7 total displays that I want to attach to the mac pro, AND I would like to retain at least one empty pcie slot for other items like sata 6gb or a pcie SSD, etc.

    So I guess a double height 5770 in slot 1 (3) and 2 gt120s (4) gets me to 7, but it's pretty lame that 3 of those are involving adaptors for DVI, etc.

    Since apple is the one that is pushing MDP, a max of 2 mdp per card (on the 5770) seems a bit lame.

    I also find your assumption (possibly correct) that there won't be eyefinity, or anything like it, on the mac pro to also be very lame - aren't these supposed to be the high end systems for creative/dev/visualization work ?? I hardly think 6 or 7 heads on one is some outlandish use case...
     
  15. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #15
    I agree it'd be nice to see an Eyefinity 6, but I really doubt it will happen.

    One possibility is that the next Apple cards will support DP1.2, which allows for display port daisy chaining. But who knows when that will happen or if it will happen at all. I do think it's more likely than Eyefinity 5/6.

    But hey, in the here and now, with 7 monitors you are already going to have 14 cables for video and power. With all that spaghetti already, 3 adapters isn't really a deal-breaker IMHO.

    Agreed, not outlandish (although probably rare). I suspect most people would just buy monitors with flexible input arrangements. You have monitors that only accept MDP? Apple Cinema Displays I guess?
     
  16. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #16
    Honestly... 6-7 displays on one card is mostly a niche among Pros because that cuts your VRAM to ribbons. Not much you can do on 150 megs of VRAM.
     
  17. gjarold thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #17
    Yes, and that is why the OP spoke of a single card, single height, with 3 or 4 MDP on it. The idea is that I would then get two such cards.

    We've morphed a bit into discussing eyefinity, card futures, etc., but the original "lament" was simply that I can't even get 3 or 4 MDP on one single slot card.

    The related problem is that the only way to get 7 displays _at all_ is with two 5770s and a single gt120, and that means I can put no other expansion cards into the system - all four slots (or spaces for slots) are taken by gfx cards.
     
  18. IceMacMac macrumors 6502

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    Jun 6, 2010
    #18
    I share your lament about Macs and GPUs...but it's not just dearth of monitors one can drive...it's everything...Prices are twice as high, and we only have the lower half of the options that people have in the PC world. Worst of all you simply can't buy the higher end cards for the Mac at all.

    Lots of apps are starting to tap into the GPU so this issue is becoming ten times more important than before.

    I'm too invested in Mac to make a complete switch but my next big purchase is likely going to be a battleship sized PC.
     
  19. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #19
    Ermmm, that's not true. You can do 1 5770 and 2 GT 120s which gets you to 7 displays and leaves a card slot free.
     
  20. DocNo macrumors member

    DocNo

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    Feb 20, 2011
    #20
    Now that would be something, wouldn't it? Almost as amazing as monitor manufacturers making monitors with two display ports so you can chain through them?

    Perhaps with Thunderbolt that will finally motivate manufacturers...
     
  21. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 27, 2010
    #21
    The proper solution is a bad ass 1500 watt PSU with 1x16 lane PCI-E 3.0 which can break into 2x8, 1x8+2x4 or 4x4 of course all four being mechanical 16 lanes then no one can criticize the Mac Pro.
     
  22. initialsBB macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 18, 2010
    #22
    Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

    What about a PCIe expansion chassis ?
     
  23. DocNo macrumors member

    DocNo

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    Feb 20, 2011
    #23
    With the debut of Thunderbolt, what would you need slots for other than for graphics cards?
     

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