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#41 Frost

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 01:51 AM

MacVidCards is still flashing modern PC cards for Mac and selling them both on eBay and direct, I think. If you go that route and can limp along on macdude's GPU in the meantime, I'd wait till he gets boot screens on the current gen before buying, though. Kepler cards (780, TITAN) suck too much power for Mac Pros when they're running full tilt, what with their 250W TDP. Maxwell cards (970, 980) should have no problem whatsoever though since they're running at 145W and 165W respectively.
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When there's a multiplayer version, I'm going to be on Frost's team. Well, except he doesn't seem to actually need a team...I mean, what's the point? "Hey look, it's Frost and His Merry Gang of Useless Hangers-On!" Or something.

#42 Tetsuya

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 02:19 AM

Also not a bad plan.  I cant rave about the 970 enough; i got an EVGA ACX2 Superclocked for 339$ on New Egg, and its been a beast so far.  Every game ive thrown at it at 1080p with everything cranked, and the fan almost never hits 600rpm; in light games (the new Gauntlet, which is a great little game, i might add - or LoL), the fan doesnt even turn on, and the trmps have remained very cool.  When you add in a free copy of Far Cry 4, AC Unity, or The Crew, its a hell of a deal (even if you just sell it on).  Seeing as i enjoyed FC3 enough that i was going to pop on FC4 when it launched that brought the card down to effectively 280$ (seeing as the 60$ for FC4 was effectively spent anyway), the 970 is insanely good on the price/performance bar.

#43 Sneaky Snake

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 10:17 AM

View PostTetsuya, on 10 November 2014 - 07:28 PM, said:

My recommendation is still (if it is the GPU... And hasnt that loaner arrived yet?!) firmly on the side of "get a PC card and live wihout a boot screen" rather than pay an exorbitant price (500$+ ) on a GPU that is already obsolete, when you could spend nearly the same amount (530$ or so) on the fastest GPU on the market (GTX 980), which works in 10.10 (if youre running 10.10) or half that or less on a GTX 760, which will still max out everything at 1080p, and works in 10.7 and later.  Or if you e got 10.10 and dont game at anything more than 1080p, score yourself a GTX 970 for ~340$ - nearly a Titan in performance.

An, i also ( i think) have a an old PCIe nVidia GeForce 7300 GT feom my first-gen Mac Pro downstairs, that you can just have, to have a backup Mac-Booting native card.  Its just sitting in a box.  Yours for the price of shipping, as i have no use for it at all.

I don't want to be mr negative here, but I would caution against getting a vanilla nvidia card and assuming it will work fine (without the boot screen). I tried doing exactly that with my 2008 Mac Pro, and I could not get the card to work. It wasn't a huge issue for me, since I just then moved it to the gaming PC, but it would have been pretty annoying if I was relying on using that card.

I would get an actual flashed card off of ebay. They aren't that much more money then their PC counterparts.
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#44 Tetsuya

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 12:52 PM

I referenced the thread where the guy who does the flashing for MacVidCards went through which ones work and dont; but i dont think its a bad idea to get flashed card.

#45 macdude22

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 01:09 PM

View PostFrost, on 11 November 2014 - 01:51 AM, said:

limp along on macdude's GPU in the meantime

Limp along :crying:
You know the 4870 was ATI's flagship card at one point in time. I had this in the Mac Pro and I had one in my Gaming Berx. Y YOU PROGRESS TECHNOLOGY.
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#46 the Battle Cat

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 02:59 PM

::ticking and shaking::  Too.  Much.  Information!  Computing... computing... stand by... stand by... Must sterilize biological imperfections.  Error.  Error.  Must Analyze.  AN-A-LYZE!
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#47 Cougar

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 03:07 PM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 11 November 2014 - 02:59 PM, said:

::ticking and shaking::  Too.  Much.  Information!  Computing... computing... stand by... stand by... Must sterilize biological imperfections.  Error.  Error.  Must Analyze.  AN-A-LYZE!

EXECUTE YOUR PRIME FUNCTION!

#48 Frost

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 06:21 PM

View Postmacdude22, on 11 November 2014 - 01:09 PM, said:

Limp along :crying:
You know the 4870 was ATI's flagship card at one point in time. I had this in the Mac Pro and I had one in my Gaming Berx. Y YOU PROGRESS TECHNOLOGY.
Oh yeah? Well my QuadroFX 4500 could beat the pants off of everything.

Ten years ago.

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 11 November 2014 - 02:59 PM, said:

::ticking and shaking::  Too.  Much.  Information!  Computing... computing... stand by... stand by... Must sterilize biological imperfections.  Error.  Error.  Must Analyze.  AN-A-LYZE!

Posted Image
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Eric5h5:
When there's a multiplayer version, I'm going to be on Frost's team. Well, except he doesn't seem to actually need a team...I mean, what's the point? "Hey look, it's Frost and His Merry Gang of Useless Hangers-On!" Or something.

#49 macdude22

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Posted 11 November 2014 - 08:34 PM

View PostFrost, on 11 November 2014 - 06:21 PM, said:

Oh yeah? Well my QuadroFX 4500 could beat the pants off of everything.

Ten years ago.


You know other than the 512MB RAM I threw the PC one back in the box a while back and it ran everything fine. Stuff like skyrim had to turn the textures down to fit the constraints of the memory but at 1440x900 (my loverly basement monitor) it did fine. Honestly the 650M in my Macbook has the same problem. Have to turn textures down on everything or you get massive frame lag from exceeding the frame buffer.
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#50 the Battle Cat

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 11:01 AM

View PostTetsuya, on 10 November 2014 - 07:28 PM, said:


An, i also ( i think) have a an old PCIe nVidia GeForce 7300 GT feom my first-gen Mac Pro downstairs, that you can just have, to have a backup Mac-Booting native card.  Its just sitting in a box.  Yours for the price of shipping, as i have no use for it at all.


The only thing I'm sure of right now is that I want that nVidia GeForce 7300 GT as a backup card in case this happens again.  I have the big power cables not the micro ones, do I need new cables for your card?  Which is the more powerful card?  Yours or the Radeon HD 4870 Macdude sent me?  If yours is I'll send Macdude's card back as soon as I get it.  The less I'm leaning on someone the better and I want to get that card back into his hands safely ASAP.  I hate borrowing stuff.  I'll send you a PM with my mailing address, hopefully you'll have more success with the zip code than that chump vault hunter Rakden.

As far as which card I'm getting I am in a tail spin trying to decide on the Mac Sapphire 7950 (which would be a nice upgrade) or a cheaper and more powerful flashed PC card that carries the risk of not properly functioning without warranty or customer support.

I’m not a tech nerd and I’ve not followed flashed cards even a little.  I’m not the kind of guy who has a problem and joyously jumps into it thinking “Hey I wonder if it’s my RD249 Queue Stitch Fabulator or it could be my Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator!!  OMG this is my big chance to finally use my new Quantum Flux Analyzer!!”  I’m like the opposite guy.  I don’t hang out of tech forums, follow tech news, and only dick with the insides of my computer when the ceiling collapses on me.  Hell I don’t even know one card from the other, but now I’m forced to consider them and the consequences of getting a turkey.  I don't even know what the boot screen one of the cards fails at IS.  Is that the Apple logo or the login screen?  What sort of game support will I get from game developers if I'm running a flashed card?

To me it looks like the top end flashed cards aren’t working properly.  For me to go back into my computer after this card ordeal is like shoving a rifle into a shell shocked soldier hands and sending him running across no man’s land without pants.  I need advice from the nerds and after this I promise not to put you into an armlock and give you an Indian burn ever again.

Right now I’m leaning toward the Sapphire 7950 as a fire and forget option.  I need more information on the flashed cards.  Information such as reliability, functionality, warranties, customer support.  Who is the most reliable vendor and which is his most properly flashed card, and how it compares to the 7950.  Also a very important aspect is my usage, I want this card for playing games.  I don't do much photoshop or other graphics intensive work, basically this card should make games fly.

The thing is, I also want to upgrade the hard drive to a terabyte SSD, and double my RAM so I need to save some dough on the video card.  I think this triple upgrade will put my Mid 2010 Mac Pro in good standing for another 5 years.  I want those trash cans Apple is selling to mature a little before I buy in.
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#51 macdude22

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 12:14 PM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 12 November 2014 - 11:01 AM, said:


Which is the more powerful card?  Yours or the Radeon HD 4870 Macdude sent me?  If yours is I'll send Macdude's card back as soon as I get it.  

If you knew how badman the 7300 was you wouldn't be saying that. :teehee: You just use that 4870 as long as you need.

I have several Crucial M500 drives in use, a couple OWC Mercury's, and a seagate SSHD. All good options depending on your use case. The SSHD is cheap but your frequently used apps and OS boot fast with the tacked on NAND.

I don't think you would have a whole lot of issues with a flashed 9750 since it matches the official offering from Sapphire spec wise feral and aspyr probably test against that hardware. In retrospect I probably should have gotten one of those (or the Sapphire 9750) instead of the 680 but I was raging on ATI at the time and the price differences between PC and the Mac versions of the cards was not so drastic a year and a half ago.

The boot screen referenced is the EFI boot screen when you hold option, the login screen is the OS fully booted. I often have to target boot machines, external drives, or to windows so having a Mac BIOS on a card is essential. I have run into people who leave a 7300 in their mac pro for boot screen support and use a PC card daily driver.
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#52 Tetsuya

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 03:00 PM

the 7300 GT is ancient - and not a great card to begin with, but it will show an EFI boot screen and like i said, you can hve it for free, as a backup "need a card that will boot".  

as to how the flashed PC cards will compare against the 7950...

these are synthetic benchmarks, from PassMark, but theyre a fairly reliable indicator of performance in my experience, give or take a few %.  
(source - http://www.videocard...h_end_gpus.html)

Radeon 4870 - 1374
Radeon 5870 - 2611
Radeon 7850 - 4672 - (500$? for Mac Edition?)
GeForce GTX 680 - 5714 (600$ for Mac Edition - unsure of price)
GeForce GTX 760 (PC) - 4979 - about 200$ (non-flashed, requires 10.7 or better) - no boot screen  unless flashed
GeForce GTX 970 (PC) - 8773 - 330$ (non-flashed, requires 10.10 + nVidia Web Drives) - no boot screen unless flashed
GeForce GTX 980 (PC) - 9870 - 540$ (non-flashed, requires 10.10 + nVidia Web Drivers) - no boot screen unless flashed.  

By "no boot screen" it means no grey apple and you wouldnt get a boot selector if you held down option.  It can be unpleasant if you dont have a way to get one - which is why i recommended keeping a backup card like the GT 7300 around for diagnosis purposes.  Once the login screen shows up, though, the card will work and display the login screen.  

Or, like Frost said, you could contact the guy at MacVidCards and see if he's flashing any of the newer cards - once flashed, they work just like any other card, boot screen and all (though they may require the nVidia Web Drivers to work fully accelerated, but its not exactly hard to install them).  

From a price/performance standpoint, the GTX 760, 970, and 980 all crush either native "Mac" edition card handily.  The GTX 760 will perform as good as the 7950 and cost less than half as much, and the 970 will outperform everything "native" to the Mac and costs only 330$. If your goal is 5-year longevity, i highly recommend the GTX 970 or 980, if your budget will stretch that far on the 980 (which, since you're considering the 7950, it might). And you might be able to recoup 40-50$ of that by selling on the free game you get (Far Cry 4, AC  Unity, or The Crew) with any GTX 970/980 purchase.

Edited for info clarity

#53 the Battle Cat

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 03:17 PM

Man, every time I try to research video cards my brain fills up and I have to look at dirty pictures.  Does this ever happen to you guys?

Is the GTX 970 or 980 a Mac card or are they flashed PC cards?  When you guys mention the name of a card you know what you are referring to and how they relate to other cards.  To me it is all gobbley goop nonsense words that have no meaning.  I'm swimming in waters I have no right being in.  I just want a kick ass card that works on my computer, I used to have a Radeon HD 5870 in my computer and I want to upgrade to something to make that seem flat footed.  I feel like crap trying to sort it out.  Confused crap.  OK, I'm off to Pr0nToob.  I'll check in later when I have more room in my brain.
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#54 macdude22

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 03:50 PM

A GTX 680 would mop up for sure. Or one of these later cards. I'm probably in the minority but If you get a card that mirrors one of the production "mac" cards you're unlikely to have any issues as feral, aspyr and their ilk test against that hardware. Though we'd probably never get them to admit it I wouldn't be surprised if they don't have some hackintoshes around the office to test against as well.

http://www.macvidcar...Classified.html

I see the flashed version of the 2GB 680 is half the price of the Mac edition. This was not the case when I bought mine, was only a 100 dollar premium.

Or if you're keen on ATI the flashed 7950 is only 290, 200 less than sapphire's mac edition.

http://www.macvidcar..._7950_3_GB.html

There are no "official" manufacture supported Mac versions of the 970 and 980. It's unlikely to ever be the case since Apple doesn't currently manufacture a machine that takes a standard PCIe card. I'm honestly surprised we saw non apple provided builds of the 7950 and 680. I guess a little part of me wanted to support that and that tied into buying the dum EVGA mac edition.
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#55 Matt Diamond

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 09:19 PM

Don't feel bad if you eventually go with the "fire and forget" solution. Yes, it costs more. Yes, people often have good luck with using cheaper PC cards. But they sometimes are spending time to save money, or putting up with annoyances like the boot screen. It's just a choice.  You don't have to leave your comfort zone if you don't want to.

I eventually chose an Apple card myself, because I had enough money for it but I'm often short of free time. Plus my whole family uses this Mac, they don't like it when I perform operations on it. (Also, I've diagnosed problems from boot screens over the years, I'd feel nervous without it.)
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#56 Tetsuya

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 11:38 PM

Thats why you keep a spare card like a 7300 GT installed or handy.  

That being said - if you're looking for 5 years of longevity - eventually you are going to be forced to use a flashed PC card.  

As MacDude said - there isn't a computer apple makes anymore with PCIe slots - ergo, no one is going to be making any more mac compatible GPUs in the future (there's absolutely zero market other than older model Pro owners), and the 7950 and GTX 680 are already at end-of-life (being equivalent to low-midrange current cards at best).  In two more years, they wont handle games at 1080p, much less 5 years from now.

#57 Tetsuya

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Posted 13 November 2014 - 01:48 AM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 12 November 2014 - 03:17 PM, said:

Man, every time I try to research video cards my brain fills up and I have to look at dirty pictures.  Does this ever happen to you guys?

Is the GTX 970 or 980 a Mac card or are they flashed PC cards?

I edited my above post with colors to make it easier to read, but they are PC cards, and if you wanted it flashed youd have to pay someone to do so (like MacVidCards)

Quote

When you guys mention the name of a card you know what you are referring to and how they relate to other cards.  To me it is all gobbley goop nonsense words that have no meaning.  I'm swimming in waters I have no right being in.  I just want a kick ass card that works on my computer, I used to have a Radeon HD 5870 in my computer and I want to upgrade to something to make that seem flat footed.

If you look above, ive changed the benchmark numbers to yellow/orange to be easier to distinguish.  Your old 5870 scores a 2611 - most of the other cards listed (Mac 7950, GTX 680, PC GTX 760, 970, and 980) are 2-3x that.  

ANY of the available options will be significantly faster, i just dont think youll get much longevity out of the "Mac Edition" 7950 or GTX 680 as they are already outperformed (by a significant margin) by much cheaper PC cards, and going into the future, no one is going to be making Mac Edition cards as there are no computers to put them in as Apple no longer makes anything with upgradeable GPUs/normal PCIe slots.

#58 macdude22

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Posted 13 November 2014 - 07:27 AM

View PostTetsuya, on 12 November 2014 - 11:38 PM, said:

the 7950 and GTX 680 are already at end-of-life (being equivalent to low-midrange current cards at best).  In two more years, they wont handle games at 1080p, much less 5 years from now.

Ehhhhhhhhh I think that's a little dramatic. Either card will live out Sir Cat's Mac Pro ending days. My GTX 480 will still handle almost everything on high (well it did when I retired it a couple months ago). Vidja cards are mostly e-peen these days. Yes it's nice to see my number be higher than his number but games will run just fine. The 7950 and 680 both meet or beat the 780M, top end card Apple provides in everything but the 5k iMac (there's not a lot of data on that card yet). So companies like feral and aspyr are going to have to target acceptable performance on that level of hardware for the next several years.
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#59 the Battle Cat

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Posted 13 November 2014 - 09:44 AM

Man that's harsh.  Apple is really going to start soldering video cards in place in it's high end machines?  Did I understand you guys correctly?  I guess when that happens and my Mac dies then I'm going to get two computers, some cheap iMac PoS and a gaming PC.
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#60 macdude22

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Posted 13 November 2014 - 10:18 AM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 13 November 2014 - 09:44 AM, said:

Man that's harsh.  Apple is really going to start soldering video cards in place in it's high end machines?  Did I understand you guys correctly?  I guess when that happens and my Mac dies then I'm going to get two computers, some cheap iMac PoS and a gaming PC.

No, just that the current MacPro doesn't take a standard PCIe card and comes with 2 D'series workstation graphics card (expensive and not optimized for gaming). There are currently no aftermarket upgrades/sidegrades for the Mac Pro. It's a little frustrating that Apple won't sell a Mac Pro with a single consumer/prosumer card. But it is what it is. Apple's current demographics and target market is no longer us old grognards that grew up on IIsi's and 9600s. I complain to our rep to no end but Apple is making MONEY by the bucket, why cater to what is arguably a niche market within the Apple ecosystem.

That said the cards in the iMacs are nothing to scoff at. And the rest of the hardware is top notch. The 780M and M295X are pretty good, and the display on 5k iMac is impeccable, as good or better than any of the overpriced NEC medical displays we have around.
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