Two ATI X1900 XT in Mac Pro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by andreaskoller, May 21, 2007.

  1. andreaskoller macrumors newbie

    May 21, 2007
    Short version: Is it possible to put another X1900 into my Mac Pro?

    Long version:
    I have a Mac Pro, bought in Oct 2006, 2x2,66 Dual-Core, 4x512 MB Ram, with a ATI X1900 XT 512MB. So far, so good!

    Now I need to connect 3 Beamers and one Cinema 23", that's 4 screens.

    Option 1)
    One ATI X1900 XT and one Matrox Triplehead2Go Analog
    Unfortunately, the Triplehead2Go Analog only supports 800x600 on the three screens when another display is connected to the other DVI port. So this option dies.

    Option 2)
    One ATI X1900 XT and one Matrox Triplehead2Go Digital
    Unfortunately the digital version of this card arrives in mid 2007. I need it now.

    Option 3)
    Two ATI X1900 XT
    So this is my actual question: is it possible to put in another X1900 easily? Apple Support (phone, Vienna) says yes. Just order the $399 ATI Radeon X1900 XT Graphics Upgrade Kit for Mac Pro.
    However, the BTO options of the Mac Pro don't include 2 ATIs, which is strange.
    Furthermore, I am concerned that the specs for the X1900 require "one x16 lane graphics slot" (according to
    The Mac Pro, however, doesn't offer another x16 (according to PCI Developer Note).
    Will the second card run slower (max of x8 is possible when I put it into slot 2), or not at all?
    Will the power consumption be too much for one power supply?

    Option 4)
    Put in 2 new NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT instead of the ATI. Reduced performance. Mixing of ATI+NVIDIA is not recommended.
  2. spaz8 macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2007
    AFAIK , the mac pro's currently only have one 16x PCI-e slot... the 1900XT physically takes up two.. if u can squeeze a 2nd 1900xt in and take up the remaining two slots they will be running at 8x pci-e or something so the performance is gonna be cut at the knees there too (probably why its not a BTO option)... i was gonna suggest u add a 7300 next to the 1900xt.. but as u mentioned.. could have issues haveing nvidia + ati... in the same box.. not sure though.
  3. mustang_dvs macrumors 6502a


    Feb 9, 2003
    Durham, NC
    According to barefeats, it's possible.

    Speed tests & data:

  4. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    It only cuts the performance slightly from what i have seen in benchmarks. a x1900 at 8x will still perform better then the 7300. And mixing the two is a bad idea some say its fine others say it crashes the whole system. But power is no a problem. The mac pro has a HUGE power supply in it.
  5. slughead macrumors 68040


    Apr 28, 2004
    Mixing the x1900 and 7300 crashes the system?

    Not on my box.. except in windows, but that's normal
  6. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    Yeah there has been mixed reports. Some say it locks up when you drag certain windows between the monitors. Others say they have no problems with it. So i am not sure who to believe and why some people have it and some don't. Maybe it has been fixed?
  7. Kosh66 macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2004
    This rumor about mixing ATI and Nvidia cards was started by an Apple Developers article that was later modified by Apple - Apple took out the comment that you can't mix the two. There is no problems that I've hearrd mixing the two. I haven't tried it myself, though.
  8. spaz8 macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2007
    I had an old ATI Radeaon 32 and Nvidia 4600 ti in the same g4 without problem... the nvidia card died eventually (the fan seized up)..
  9. slughead macrumors 68040


    Apr 28, 2004
    Yeah, I could definitely see the window dragging thing being problematic.

    When I had my ATI 9200 and my NVidia 6800U in my G5, it'd go ape-poop when you tried to do that with DVD's window.

    I've seen no problems so far except with cohesion in parallels being worthlessly slow.

    It all depends on the program. From what I've seen, Apple's fixed most of the problems.

    Amazing, considering in Windows Vista, you can't even RUN both these cards at once.
  10. TJET macrumors newbie

    May 28, 2007
    2 x1900's in a Mac Pro IS Possible - though NOT with Vista

    Hi, just thought I'd add my 2 penneth worth!

    I have a 8-core Mac Pro. I did have an x1900 & a 7300GT BTO - which within OSX, worked perfectly.

    Using Bootcamp (to run software unavilable for OSX) however, only the X1900 would function "normally" - the 7300gt wasn't seen at all by Vista (64).

    After being unable to deduce if anyone else on the web had the same Configuration as myself (2 x x1900's, with Vista 64 & OSX) I decided to purchase an additonal x1900 to replace the 7300gt, which I have now done.

    Alas, the second X1900 inhibits the 1st card from working correctly - with only the 1st card providing very low resolution's and picture quality (Windows cannot even see the card correctly - with it saying "unknown" where Ati X1900 should be in device manager / display properties).

    I have really struggled to get this configuration to work - tried different drivers, different builds - all failed (I would appreciate some tips if anyone has successfully achieved this!).

    It is physically possible however, to fit both cards, the second card will fit into the 2nd or 3rd slot - though if you have 4 x disks like I do, you'll have to remove the disks (and refit them later, after the card is fitted) to get the card in the 3rd or upper most slot. This will allow (in OSX) to have the 16x X1900 in slot 1 and the other in an 8x config in the upper most slot **that it will fit in to** slot 3.

    I have the Sonnet e2p SATA card in my system as well for additional extrnal storage (which can't be booted from - another fact I was unaware of pre-purchase :( ).

    My Sonnet e2P is now in slot 4, though I've now totally removed th second x1900 as it inhibits Windows so much!

    Incidentally, I have replaced the stock heat sink / fan assembly on both cards with Accelero X2's because of the noice the stock ones create. The difference is significant, I paid £12 for each over here in the UK and money well spent IMO.
  11. slughead macrumors 68040


    Apr 28, 2004
    I'm sure you've thought of it already, but did you try messing with your PCIe settings?:

  12. TJET macrumors newbie

    May 28, 2007
    Yes, the utility invoked automatically in OSX. Booting into Bindows after making such a change (within "Expansion Slot Utility" in OSX) seemed to make no difference, but then I wouldn't have thought it would given the O/S post configuration setting, is different etc.

    I'm hoping someone will attempt to run the 64 bit version of Vista (ultimate in my case) on a Mac Pro, with 2 X1900 cards at some point - and will experience the same problem or better still - find a solution.

    I don't think it's currently possible.

    Initially, by the way, I did try the x1900 and the 7300GT together (the 7300GT being the second card) and although Vista would not recognise the 7300GT, it did not inhibit the X1900 from working - as the 2nd X1900 does in a 2 X1900 configuration does. Kinda wished I had my 7300GT back now, at least I'd be able to use 4 screens in OSX and still use the X1900 - on it's own - in Vista :)

    Perhas this is a flaw of Boot Camp Beta 1.2?
  13. andreaskoller thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 21, 2007
    Thanks for all the responses!

    I had no problems at all to add another X1900 XT (from Apple store), the Expansion Slot Utility asked me how to configure my two cards as soon as I booted the first time, as TJET mentioned. The only problem I had was that it is a little bit difficult to physically insert the second card, because this is only possible after removing the card in Slot 1, which is not well explained in the manual imho.

    I ran a multiscreen setup on 3 1400x1050 beamers and one control monitor without any problems. I don't notice any difference with running both cards at x8 only, even if I work with 3D-apps like Maya.

    However, I haven't tested with Windows Vista, as there is no reason for me to install it.
  14. GrahamWelland macrumors newbie

    Jun 17, 2007
    Glad to hear that the 2x 1900XT works. I'm going to have to go down that route myself as I currently have 1900XT & 7300GT combo and it isn't happy at all when running Aperture.

    I've found that the 1900XT/7300GT works fine with normal OS X applications and desktops but if you're running Aperture then performance is terrible plus it becomes very buggy and almost unusable. Removing my 7300GT fixed things but I still need 3 displays (2 x Cinema 30's + Cintiq) so it looks like adding another X1900XT is the way to go.
  15. hayduke macrumors 65816


    Mar 8, 2005
    is a state of mind.
    I have to admit that I think I would rather spend the money on a bigger monitor rather than using multiple cards and multiple monitors. This, of course, pre-supposes that you don't own the monitors already. A single 1900XT will run 2 30" ACDs and I can't see needing more than that (for my work...). Just my two cents.
  16. -V-O-Y-A-G-E-R- macrumors newbie


    Apr 13, 2008
    I know this is quite an old topic, but... :)

    Today I'm going to flash PC X1900XT for use in my Mac Pro 2.66. At the moment, there's 7300GT in it.

    I see that both cards in MP would work (except with the reported problems with Aperture and Google Earth), but now I'm puzzled...

    Would I have any use of leaving 7300GT in MP? Performance wise.

    I have only one 20" ACD and use my Mac mainly for work with Aperture.

    Thanks :)
  17. Bubba Satori Suspended

    Bubba Satori

    Feb 15, 2008
    Well, those are two generation old video cards.:rolleyes: What a sad state of affairs for a great computer to be so hamstrung by Apples' absurd policy on video card technology and the lack of availabily of the latest video cards to upgrade power macs to. It borders on the insane. :mad:
  18. gmillerx macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009
    Still a problem with Vista64 w/dual x1900xt cards...



    I just tried it (adding a 2nd X1900XT to an existing one) yesterday, and it doesnt work (i couldnt get it to work). The 2 cards worked perfectly in OSX, but Vista61 (bootcamp) wouldnt recognize EITHER card (and reported device problems with the PCIe devices). I tried Expansion Slot Utility to wiggle the bandwidth about and reBOOTcamped, but VISTA couldnt see the cards and reverted to SaveVGA profile (1920x1200 did NOT look good on the 30inchers...sigh). Apple support pointed to MSFT and Radeon as the place for me to find support (...), but i havent heard from AMD yet.

    I still need a way to add a third monitor and (eventually) fourth monitor.

    [sig: 8core MP,13G,3.5TBdisk,X1900XT,dual 30" dells,(waiting to hookup dual 24", too), OSX, BC-Vista64, Fusion, [OSX:proToolsLE/etc; Vista:MSFT, Adobe CS4]]
  19. diamond.g macrumors 603


    Mar 20, 2007
    Can you get XP64 or Win7 64 to see the cards?
  20. gmillerx macrumors newbie

    Jan 23, 2009

    Havent tried--dont want to mess with the bootcamp setup that i have now (that works)... I gave up on the X1900XT's and ordered twin Radeon HD 3870's (Mac and PC Edition). That is 'officially' supposed to work in BC Vista64 (with SLI even attested in the not that i need that). So, i just returned the second 1900, and will mothball my existing one--replacing with the dual 3870s. I think i have seen reports already out that the twin-card works in both OSX (without SLI) and in BC V64 (with or without SLI).

    if i have a problem, i will be back to post it...sigh/smile

    tnx, g
  21. madmatter23 macrumors newbie

    Mar 27, 2008
    Installing 2 ATI Radeon x1900

    This seems to be the only thread on the internet about install 2 ATI Radeon x1900s in a Mac Pro, so I'm hoping someone here can offer help.

    I've just installed a second ATI Radeon x1900 in my Mac Pro. I purchased the special power cable to connect it to the 6 pin input on the logic board as well. After booting up, I receive the message:

    "The power cable for your graphics card is not properly connected" To connect the cable, turn off your computer. Then plug one end of the power cable into the connector on the logic board and the other end into the card."

    I've done this and it's definitely connected snugly on both ends. Did anyone have this issue when installing 2 of these cards? Did you use a second 6-pin power cable to connect the second card to the logic board as well?
  22. 300D macrumors 65816


    May 2, 2009
    If I can install two X1900s in my G5, a MP should be no problem.

    Use an adapter and power the second card from the DVD drive's plug.
  23. sdude macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2011
    same exact problem!!

    I am having the same exact problem. Two ATI 1900 cards on a mac pro. Did you ever solve it? Can you please help me?


    thank you in advance!


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