Which graphic card for playing 1080P video

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Robert Holloway, Sep 22, 2008.

  1. Robert Holloway macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2008
    #1
    I currently have a mac pro with 6Gig Ram and an NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT
    I have it linked to a projector and a 24' Dell Monitor

    I am keen to add a second monitor so I need a third output.

    Occasionally when playing 1080P video files I get a frame lag message and the video stalls before starting again. I never have this issue with 720P.

    I never play games so have no interest in that area.

    My question is:
    What would be the best video card for me to achieve 3 outputs and solve my 1080p issue?

    Many thanks
    Rob
     
  2. Acornz macrumors member

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    Aug 9, 2008
  3. orpheus1120 macrumors 65816

    orpheus1120

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    Jan 23, 2008
    Location:
    Malaysia
  4. Volante macrumors regular

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    Feb 8, 2008
    #4
    The graphics card won't help, videoplayback on the Mac is CPU only. VLC/Mplayer/Quicktime only use 1 CPU core. Plex/XBMC use several cores. Get it at www.plexapp.com
     
  5. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    Singapore
  6. orpheus1120 macrumors 65816

    orpheus1120

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location:
    Malaysia
    #6
    +1 for Plex.

    Although it's still in beta, but it's much better than QT and the ilk.

    I awaits the day it goes official.
     
  7. Robert Holloway thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2008
    #7
    Wow!!

    Thanks for the great responses.

    I have been using VLC

    I had never heard of Plex and downloaded it. I find the instructions to be almost non existent. I'll persevere.

    I am mainly interested in .mkv files. I'm not able to see if Plex supports this.

    I will also check out the 2600xt and 3870

    Seriously - many thanks for these replies. i tried for days on AppleInsider and got nothing :-(

    Rob
     
  8. Volante macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2008
    #8
    Plex is a mediacenter software, but you can use it as an ordinary player. Rightclick on the file you want to play and choose Open with.. Plex.
     
  9. orpheus1120 macrumors 65816

    orpheus1120

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    Malaysia
    #9
    Plex is essentially an open source app based on the collaborative work on XBMC (X-box media centre). It is cross-platform, and the programmer who writes the OSX version decided to go solo in the end and renamed the app to PLEX.

    You can find out more about xbmc over here and you will find another OSX player similar to Plex based on the common open source code. But IMHO, Plex's implementation on the code is much smoother.
     
  10. Robert Holloway thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2008
    #10
    I always feel so stupid when I miss tricks like this. I'm still a relatively new switcher and prone to lapses :)

    The interface is gorgeous and if it addresses the original issue I am thrilled. I need to study the options more closely, but ... wow!

    So in advance - thanks for the great steer here!

    This month I used OWC to upgrade from 2 to 6 GB of RAM for $150. I am heavily into Adobe CS3 for digital photos ....

    I will still be checking out a second graphics card as a second monitor (after the projector) is becoming a must.

    Again many thanks.
    Rob
     
  11. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

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    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #11
    The XBox Media Center for Mac really is incredible.
    I *want* to use Front Row on my Mac mini hooked to to my TV, but sometimes I need XBMC, to play my .mkv files (HD, Dolby 5.1), and it works gr8!
    Granted... the interface is not as good as Front Row's (even with the Front Row skin installed...), but it does work brilliantly!
     
  12. ceres macrumors regular

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    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    Dark Forests of Germania
    #12
    Any info on when this will be rectified? Potent gpu acceleration has been available on the PC since the NV 6600 or such.
     
  13. grue macrumors 65816

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    Somewhere.
    #13
    Perian is your friend.
     
  14. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

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    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #14
    Not quite good enough, I'm afraid.
    .mkv files in QT using Perian is agonisingly slow (esp. 1080p movies), and Dolby 5.1 support is not good.
     
  15. Lord Zedd macrumors 6502a

    Lord Zedd

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    #15
    MKV is a junk container, its inefficient and a resource hog. There is no reason it should take a multi-GHz cpu to play back 1080p. Even my G5 can play 1080p MOV, AVI, MPEG and WMV files, but MKV isn't watchable.

    Any video card will work fine. The GPU does not make any difference in video playback. A second 7300 will be more than good enough. You can get them on eBay for around $50.
     
  16. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #16
    how does one convert MKV into .mov etc??

    i currently open the MKV in QT, then just do a save as to .mov, with no difference in playback performance (i realise what i am doing is just a pass through, will i have to reconvert or something?).
     
  17. m1stake macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Philly
    #17
    Supposedly with Snow Leopard. Who knows for sure, Apple's definition could differ from what we're used to.
     
  18. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
    #18
    I'm hoping for Snow Leopard as well. I'm getting a little tired of MASSIVE CPU usage and fan spin ups when in Windows it gets passed off to the GPU.
     
  19. Lord Zedd macrumors 6502a

    Lord Zedd

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    #19
    Only for those with an Intel CPU.
     

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