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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

Mac Pro - Recognizing Mac vs PC same card SLI for boot camp


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MookieRah

 
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OK, this is a bit complicated and based on assumptions so I doubt this would work; however, it might be possible.

Basically I'm stuck with the crappy Nvidia 7300 GT that came with my Mac Pro. I want to run games a lot better than it currently does in boot camp. I read all about the Nvidia 8800 debacle in which you can use a PC 8800 on the Mac Pro and it will work in boot camp, but just not in Mac OSX. Basically it's not a hardware issue but a software issue. Nvidia just made an 8800 for Mac but it's retarded expensive.

Seeing how my options are incredibly limited when it comes to updating a video card on Mac I decided the only affordable option would just be to get another Mac Nvidia 7300 SLI and hook them together. My friend, out of boredom, looked up and found that I could basically get 3 PC Nvidia 7300 with identical specs for the price of one Mac Nvidia 7300.

So this leads me to an interesting question. Would it be possible to hook up 3 PC Nvidia 7300s to the Mac one and have OSX just recognize the Mac Nividia but have boot camp using all 4?
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bryphotoguy

 
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I would assume yes. But all the PCI slots perform at different speeds. The main one is x16. The others are configurable but I think they might be x8, x4, and x4. I don't know how that will mess with with gaming. I put 3 Mac 7300GT's in my last gen MP. I picked up two for $35 each on eBay. Sometimes you get lucky.


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MookieRah

 
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Thanks to your info I've been able to figure a lot of stuff out about this, although still no definitive answer.

You said you had 3 of the 7300's on a last gen mac pro right? How did you adjust the speeds for those for optimal performance? As it stands it looks like the Expansion slot utility doesn't provide many options. Wiki says that Mac Pros have 40 lanes to work with, which should give me 2 slots at 16x and 2 slots at 4x; however, I think that's probably the current gen of Mac Pros.

So my new question is:
What speed would the 7300 run in? Do they need 16 lanes per card? Could I drop it down to 8x and run 2 cards fine?

At this point I'm thinking that getting just one more card a a RAM upgrade would be best.
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I did have 3 installed. I got the extra 2 on eBay and sold the whole thing a week later. I never did any testing.

I will check for you later. I know I found an article online how to change the speed settings yourself. It was simple but there were only four options to choose.


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MookieRah

 
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Quote:
I know I found an article online how to change the speed settings yourself. It was simple but there were only four options to choose.
I'm pretty sure you are talking about the Expansion slot utility, which is what I mentioned earlier. If that is all I have to go on then I won't be able to get two cards at 16x (currently my one card is on a 16x). The best I could get is one card 16x and the other card 8x.

Would this negatively affect the performance of the other card? If so, how much?
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rob.h

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MookieRah View Post
Nvidia just made an 8800 for Mac but it's retarded expensive.
Depends what you call expensive. Here in the UK, a typical 512Mb 8800GT will set you back £125 (about $250). With the Mac Pro version of the card retailing at $279 off the nVidia website, that's probably not a bad price for us here in rip-off Britain

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bryphotoguy

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MookieRah View Post
I'm pretty sure you are talking about the Expansion slot utility, which is what I mentioned earlier. If that is all I have to go on then I won't be able to get two cards at 16x (currently my one card is on a 16x). The best I could get is one card 16x and the other card 8x.

Would this negatively affect the performance of the other card? If so, how much?
I didn't do any testing. Try http://xlr8yourmac.com/. They do a lot of testing of video cards I think.


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