What video card for a 3.1 Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by dobro03, Jan 21, 2014.

  1. dobro03 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    #1
    I have an early 2008 Harpertown Mac Pro. 2 x 2.8 GHz Quad core Intel Xeon. My video card currently is an ATI Radeon HD 2600 and I would like to change it out as I had issues with it awhile ago, though things are good now. I want a card that is easy to install, will work right away with no issues as this is a computer used for audio daily in a pro capacity.

    I have been waiting to upgrade to the new MacPro, but now am considering waiting a few months till people in the pro audio community are using them since I can't afford to have any down time because of deadlines.

    Thanks for any thoughts and info.
     
  2. NOTNlCE macrumors 6502a

    NOTNlCE

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2013
    Location:
    DMV Area
    #2
    Get a nice PC NVIDIA card. You'll have no boot screen, but the performance will blow your 2600 XT out of the water. I keep my XT driving a VGA monitor so I can have a boot scree, and then drive 2 1080p's off my PC GTX 660. Performance is absolutely great, no issues whatsoever. If it's in your budget, grab a PC GTX 680 and flash it using the netkas utility for boot screens at PCIe 2.0 speeds. Check out the sticky thread at the top of the forum, and the 680 thread MacVideoCards started a little while back. Hope I helped.
    -N
     
  3. dobro03 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    #3
    When you say I won't have a boot screen, what does that mean and how does that affect me?

    Thanks.
     
  4. Macsonic macrumors 65816

    Macsonic

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Location:
    Earth
    #4
    Without the boot screen, the booting will just go straight to your desktop. Some users are fine without the boot screen if you don't need pressing the option key to see and select your HDs while booting. Personally I would go for a flashed PC GPU with a boot screen so I can do some troubleshooting in cases of booting problems. HERE is a video of a guy installing a PC card without a boot screen on a Mac Pro 2008. PC cards offer more choices than Mac edition cards and prices are usually lower and having better performances.
     
  5. dobro03 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    #5
    Thank you. Think I would like a boot screen. Any other suggestions?
     
  6. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #6
    Mac cards:
    Sapphire 3GB 7950 Mac Edition
    eVGA 2GB GTX 680 Mac Edition
    Apple 5770
    Apple 5870

    Flashed PC cards also have boot screens:
    You can self-flash a PC GTX 680 fairly easily.
    You can self-flash several PC AMD cards, but it can be trickier.
    Pre-flashed PC cards are on Ebay.
     
  7. naderd macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2014
    #7
    speakers

    hey guys sorry for bringing up something irrelevant to the thread, but i didn't want to start a new one. I just wanted to ask, does the new mac pro have speakers? or do we have to buy external ones?
    thanks
     
  8. m4v3r1ck macrumors 68020

    m4v3r1ck

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2011
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #8
    Yes, you CAN!

    Slot#1 EVGA PC GTX-6xx / 7xx series much cheaper then MAC (be aware for having the 6-pin powercable versions due to the max. power consumption)
    Slot#2 ATI 2600HD for bootscreen/maintenaince (or keep in stock for emergency)
    Slot#3 whatever ?
    Slot#4 whatever ?

    Perhaps you would like to check my specs;

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1533504 ppst #2 and #10

    GL & Cheers
     
  9. bill001 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2007
    #9
    Just go to ebay and type "macvidcards" They flash all the high end cards so they fully support macs...I bought an AMD 7970 from them and it works great. Thanks to the FCP X 10.1 update, rendering and such is more than twice as fast as my 5770. Woo hoo! A little more life left. I have the same computer you do by the way.
     
  10. flowrider macrumors 601

    flowrider

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    #10
    I have a MVC flashed GTX 570 (Gigabyte 3 fan) for sale in the Marketplace Section of this forum. It will work great in the 3,1 Mac Pro and has a boot screen. PM me if interested.

    Lou
     
  11. willtothewong macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2009
    #11

    Thanks for sharing!

    I'm in the market to replace my 5770. I would like the idea of having a bootscreen so I will probably either keep my 5770 in my system, hooked up to a secondary monitor, or just keep it in case I need to do maintenance.

    ----------

    I thought I read somewhere that 7970's work out of the box w/ boot screens?

    Or am I just dreaming?
     
  12. flyingmanatee macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2014
    #12
  13. dobro03 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    #13
    Reviving this thread. I'm the OP, and thought we were just going to go for the new MacPro. Now we are on a job where we can't have any downtime, so I am back on the hunt for a video card. We can't lose any PCIe slots as they are used for ProTools cards, so we can only replace the existing video card which is an ATI 2600.

    Any card you can recommend that is Mac ready, has a boot screen and would work with Snow Leopard and Mountain Lion?

    Thanks.
     
  14. matty1551 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2009
    #14
    Since you are simply doing all audio work, why not get the cheapest Mac card possible? That way you haven't sunk a bunch of money into a card in case you end up buying the new MP.
     
  15. dobro03 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    #15
    The card that is in the machine has been stable the last year or so, but I am worried it may fail since we had issues in the past. Will there be zero benefit from a somewhat better card? Even for running a couple 30" ACD monitors or a 30" and 55" HDTV.

    Thanks.
     
  16. NOTNlCE macrumors 6502a

    NOTNlCE

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2013
    Location:
    DMV Area
    #16
    You could pick up a PC 5770 and flash it with a Mac EFI ROM for really cheap, you can probably pick one up on Ebay for under $80, and flashing is very straightforward if you have a Windows PC.
     
  17. Macsonic macrumors 65816

    Macsonic

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Location:
    Earth
    #17
    You can try considering Mac editions Radeon 1G vram 5770HD, 5870HD or Nvidia 285GTX 1G or the GT120 512mb GPUs. All of them are old cards but from my experience using them on Snow Leopard and Mountain Lion, they were stable and worked fine these years. Personally I am fine with old GPUs as what is important is they are stable specially when you have multiple deadlines to meet. Proabably go for the 5770HD as it's price has lowered. I've used these cards on my 2008 Mac Pro.
     
  18. thefredelement macrumors 65816

    thefredelement

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2012
    Location:
    New York
    #18
  19. yaboo007 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2014
    #19
    I just bought a nvidia 680 card for the macpro 3,1 Hope this works and brings a great improvement over the ati 2600.
     
  20. InsertCatchyNic macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2009
    #20
    Your best bang for your buck is the ATI 5870. You can upgrade to the 680, but your performance gains won't be that great.

    Barefeats did some benchmarks on it a couple of years ago and realized that once you get to a card like the 680 the 3,1 mac pros are bottlenecked at the CPU.
     
  21. nigelbb macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    #21
    Not sure that they are bottlenecked at the CPU when the whole point of CUDA & OpenCL is that computation can be offloaded to the graphics card.
     
  22. yaboo007 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2014
    #22
    All I am really going to use the video card for is as a adobe gpu.
     

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