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austinpike

macrumors 6502
Oct 5, 2008
316
48
MN
We have a couple Vives for work (architecture.) I have a 3.46 5,1 and 980 at home, but it hadn't really occurred to me to plug the Vive into it. (I don't have Windows loaded on it at the moment.) Single thread performance may not be up to par with a modern i7, but I don't think it would fall into the realm of "that bad."

The Oculus rift would complain about the CPU being insufficient (but should still run.) The Vive doesn't nag you about the hardware. Just for a test I -did- put the Vive on my bootcamped MacBook Pro w/750m. It installed and ran, the framerate was certainly nothing you would want to use regularly, but it looked fine when you weren't moving your head around.

If I get some time in the next couple weeks I could try to install it on the 5,1; but given the experiences I have had so far I don't see why it wouldn't work. I'm not much of a gamer so I couldn't really comment on the finer points of CPU vs GPU limitations.
 

asetyyli

macrumors newbie
Feb 19, 2017
2
0
Just installed a non-EFI GTX 980 Ti into my 5,1 hexacore and plugged in the Vive. Works great, buttery smooth on all games / experiences so far. Running in Bootcamp, obviously.

Before installing the card I was worried that SteamVR Performance Test would complain that the CPU is under-powered, but no:

perf_test.png


I'm having some issues with the headset/controller tracking, but I don't think it has anything to do with the Mac Pro. I just probably need to cover the mirrors and windows in the room.
 

joebclash

macrumors regular
Jun 14, 2016
209
119
Just installed a non-EFI GTX 980 Ti into my 5,1 hexacore and plugged in the Vive. Works great, buttery smooth on all games / experiences so far. Running in Bootcamp, obviously.

Before installing the card I was worried that SteamVR Performance Test would complain that the CPU is under-powered, but no:

View attachment 692149

I'm having some issues with the headset/controller tracking, but I don't think it has anything to do with the Mac Pro. I just probably need to cover the mirrors and windows in the room.

I'm assuming your gtx is not flashed? I was told a non-flash gtx only runs at pcie 1.0 in bootcamp. That doesn't impact vr performace?
 

thornslack

macrumors 6502
Nov 16, 2013
410
165
The performance loss of pcie 1.0 is very marginal, maybe a few frames when it comes to gaming as the bus isn't close to saturated. Back when I had 680s and 780s I saw zero difference perceptually between PC variants and then flashing them. Between the slower bus and our slower processors it's maybe 10% or so depending on the title. This is why I choose the most powerful GPU I can and oc a bit to do my best to mitigate.

Here's a good article on the topic:

http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages/pci-express-scaling-game-performance-analysis-review,1.html
 

joebclash

macrumors regular
Jun 14, 2016
209
119
The performance loss of pcie 1.0 is very marginal, maybe a few frames when it comes to gaming as the bus isn't close to saturated. Back when I had 680s and 780s I saw zero difference perceptually between PC variants and then flashing them. Between the slower bus and our slower processors it's maybe 10% or so depending on the title. This is why I choose the most powerful GPU I can and oc a bit to do my best to mitigate.

Here's a good article on the topic:

http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages/pci-express-scaling-game-performance-analysis-review,1.html

Thanks for the link. It makes me feel alittle better using a non-flash gtx.
 

asetyyli

macrumors newbie
Feb 19, 2017
2
0
I'm assuming your gtx is not flashed? I was told a non-flash gtx only runs at pcie 1.0 in bootcamp. That doesn't impact vr performace?

Yes, not flashed, off the shelf PC part. Runs at PCIe 1.1 according to the GPU-Z tool, but I haven't experienced any issues with performance. GPU-Z has a bus saturation indicator. I will see what is shows while using SteamVR.
 

fendersrule

macrumors 6502
Oct 9, 2008
423
324
Is there a VR-capable GPU that you can put in a Mac Pro 5,1 that would fall within the power requirements?
 

fendersrule

macrumors 6502
Oct 9, 2008
423
324
Ah. Maybe an easier way to think about it is what power ports are on the card. If there's just a single 8-pin, then getting 2x 6pin -> single 8 pin is all you need. If there's an 8 pin + a 6 pin, then yea...gotta start getting fancy. :)

So the Mac Pro isn't all that power constrained if you just want to run a single powerful GPU. Many newer GPUs just have a single 8 pin connector. That sounds easy enough!
 

bwinter88

macrumors regular
Jul 20, 2012
152
1,912
I'm running a Vive on a 5,1 with a MacVidCards flashed EFI 980 and it works great, if someone wants me to run a bench to see if there's any improvement, tell me what to do
 
Last edited:

Flint Ironstag

macrumors 65816
Dec 1, 2013
1,330
743
Houston, TX USA
People always talk about the speed penalty for fully populating RAM slots on this model. The penalty is really only observable in benchmarks. Real life use, not so much.

If your workload fits comfortably in 24GB, stick with that. If memory pressure is getting too high, upgrade to 32GB.
 
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