using Mac Pro as work computer and HTPC

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by sjivan, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. sjivan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    #1
    I ordered a new mac pro 2.66 octo with a single video card (GT 120). I also ordered a mini for use a a HTPC in my living room.

    I have a TV in my bedroom too (where my Mac Pro is going to be placed). I was wondering if there's a way to "partition" the display of my Mac Pro so that when I'm at my desk, it functions as a regular computer, and also be able to use it for Front Row, Plex etc with an apple remote. I'll can attach an IR receiver to my Mac Pro. I'd like this to be setup so that the two modes do not interfere with each other and effectively function independently. Is such a setup possible with a second video card?

    I idea is the share my media between the mini and mac pro so that I have access to the Front row etc from both rooms.
     
  2. gzfelix macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2007
    Location:
    Charlottetown, PE
    #2
    Use XBMC/Plex, and set up XBMC to use the second display (TV) as full screen. Also check out this thread: http://xbmc.org/forum/showthread.php?p=168826
     
  3. sjivan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    #3
    Would you suggest having a second video card for this? Or would the GT 120 have enough horsepower to drive both displays simultaneously? I have a 30" monitor.

    If having a second video card is recommended for this setup, then I need to act soon and change my order to include the Radeon 4870 card as well.
     
  4. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #4
    What, exactly, will you be doing with your Mac Pro? Knowing this, we can say if you need another card at all.
     
  5. sjivan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    #5
    I'll be using it primarily for programming. No heavy duty gaming but I'd like to record / playback movies and HD shows just like my mini so I'd like the resolution and performance of these to be good.
     
  6. sjivan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    #6
    I just called Apple tech support but unfortunately they weren't of much help and were just reading of the tech specs listed on the website without any help with the specific info that I am looking for :(

    Tallest Skil, what was the specific reason for you going with with 2 video cards?
     
  7. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    Aug 13, 2006
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    #7
    I got two because I didn't want to deal with an adapter, because I get more graphical power per monitor with one on each and because Snow Leopard will let me combine both of their processors with my eight CPU cores for an even more ludicrously powerful machine.
     
  8. sjivan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2009
    #8
    I just called and had them switch from the GT 120 to Redeon 4870. I asked them about the option of adding the 4870 to the existing GT120 and they said that wasn't an option. The web order also doesn't have that option so I'm curious how you set that up..

    Anyways I feel a little better going with the 4870 as I can add a lower end one later should it be required for my setup. Now I'm only crossing my fingers hoping that the 4870 is not noisy since users of previous Radeon cards have complained that the fan does get noisy.
     
  9. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #9
    I bought one with a 4870 inside and put a GT 120 in my cart as well. I'll install it when I get it.
     

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