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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts
    26
    Question about 2nd video card on Mac Pro
    I purchased a Mac Pro and the one we ordered is with the NVidia G8800 GT option. We are going to be running 3 monitors with this but the 3rd monitor won't be as important. To save money we are considering getting the ATI 2600 XT as the 2nd video card. I read a lot on these boards and never really have found an answer as to whether these can be used together or not. I don't want to do it unless I know it works for sure since I don't want stability issues. I can imagine until the Nvidia is out likely there won't be an answer for sure.

    Here is the problem. Tonight I decided to call AppleCare figuring I could get a good answer. When the guy answered I told him I am getting a Mac Pro and asked my question. Before I knew it he was explaining how the "MacBook Pro has two video cards in it already, one for the internal LCD, one for an external" I explained I have a Mac Pro coming, not a MacBook Pro. I hope I'm not wrong but I almost explained to him that the MacBook Pro only has one video card.

    Then I explained it was the Mac Pro and how I want to know if I could use an NVidia G8800GT with an ATI 2600 XT and that I would be using it with 3 monitors. He said to hold on a minute and he would check into it. He came back in minutes and said he talked to several other csr's there that specialize in desktops and they told him that you can't use an ATI with a NVidia, you can only use one card type.

    The next part is what shocked me, he then said how before I buy another video card to check with the manufacturer to make sure it works with a Mac Pro. I explained I'm not buying a graphics card from another manufacturer, I'm buying Apple's graphics card. Well he tried to tell me Apple DOES NOT sell video cards. I realized at this point I was not going to get any help. I never have had problems with calling Apple in the past but am shocked he talked to others who gave him this information. I also realize now that I should not take his comment seriously about them not working together. What I'm wondering, does anyone know yet if these two will work well together?I purchased a Mac Pro and the one we ordered is with the NVidia G8800 GT option. We are going to be running 3 monitors with this but the 3rd monitor won't be as important. To save money we are considering getting the ATI 2600 XT as the 2nd video card. I read a lot on these boards and never really have found an answer as to whether these can be used together or not. I don't want to do it unless I know it works for sure since I don't want stability issues. I can imagine until the Nvidia is out likely there won't be an answer for sure.

    Here is the problem. Tonight I decided to call AppleCare figuring I could get a good answer. When the guy answered I told him I am getting a Mac Pro and asked my question. Before I knew it he was explaining how the "MacBook Pro has two video cards in it already, one for the internal LCD, one for an external" I explained I have a Mac Pro coming, not a MacBook Pro. I hope I'm not wrong but I almost explained to him that the MacBook Pro only has one video card.

    Then I explained it was the Mac Pro and how I want to know if I could use an NVidia G8800GT with an ATI 2600 XT and that I would be using it with 3 monitors. He said to hold on a minute and he would check into it. He came back in minutes and said he talked to several other csr's there that specialize in desktops and they told him that you can't use an ATI with a NVidia, you can only use one card type.

    The next part is what shocked me, he then said how before I buy another video card to check with the manufacturer to make sure it works with a Mac Pro. I explained I'm not buying a graphics card from another manufacturer, I'm buying Apple's graphics card. Well he tried to tell me Apple DOES NOT sell video cards. I realized at this point I was not going to get any help. I never have had problems with calling Apple in the past but am shocked he talked to others who gave him this information. I also realize now that I should not take his comment seriously about them not working together. What I'm wondering, does anyone know yet if these two will work well together?

  2. #2

    bryphotoguy's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 02, 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,978
    Specs:
    Quad 2.8GHz Mac Pro, Edge iPhone
    Got a little copy and paste happy there? Just curious, did you post on other Mac based forums? If so, can you provide us with their answers?
    I doubt it would be a problem tossing the ATI card in the machine with the 8800 GT already installed. Seeing the new Mac Pro was released just over two weeks ago and there was a three week wait for any Mac Pro with the 8800 GT installed, I can't say for sure that anyone's received theirs yet AND if they've tried it. So it's going to be difficult getting a definite answer right now.
    This questions has been asked multiple times on MF, already: See Link for an example.
    Now Apple says the Mac Pro supports 8- 30" monitors. It doesn't say it will run 4- 8800 GT or 4- 2600 XT's. I would assume since two of the PCI-E slots are much slower, no one would think of tossing 4- 8800GT's in the Mac Pro. It's logical, to me atleast, that anyone should be able to mix and match video cards to their own desire because the costs would out weigh the benefits when using the 2- x4 PCI-E slots.

    I do not recommend AppleCare over the phone. I've had similar problems with them. The Apple geniuses are a lot more knowledgable. I would contact them if you ever have a question.

    January 2008 Member of the Month

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Nov 09, 2008
    Posts
    2
    Specs:
    Mac Pro 8x2.8, 6GB RAM, 1.3TB, 8800GT, 24"@1920x1200
    Vista has a problem running an ATI card at the same time as an nVidia card. Mac OS X is happy and can do it no problems (well what do you expect...?)

    I can confirm I ran my quad 2.0 Mac Pro with support for no less than six monitors by way of 1x ATI X1900XT in the 16x slot and a pair of nVidia 7300GT cards each in their own 4x slot (configured in OS X).

    I ran 3 monitors, one off each card, all worked great until you booted into Windows

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