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I've got an early 2008 Mac Pro, and would really like to upgrade my video card beyond the stock Radeon 2600 HD that came with my system. I run two DVI monitors (neither of which accepts the Mini DisplayPort connector). I'd also like to get a card that will work well for Windows games under Boot Camp. So it seems like my options are:

  • ATI Radeon 3870 Mac and PC edition - Cheap, but not sold by the Apple store and I hear it's pretty noisy.
  • ATI Radeon 4870 - Mid-price, sold by the Apple store, but has one DVI port and one Mini DisplayPort. I have heard bad things about the Mini DisplayPort to DVI converter.
  • NVIDIA GTX 285 - Cool but pretty expensive.

Has anybody had any experience with any of these cards? Can anyone confirm or deny the noise issues with the 3870 or the non-working DisplayPort to DVI adapter? Are there any options I haven't thought of?

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closed as off-topic by Tog, random May 11 '14 at 20:22

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  • "Questions seeking for hardware shopping recommendations are off-topic because they are often relevant only to the question author at the time the question was asked and tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead of asking what to buy, try asking how to find out what suits your needs." – Tog, random
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I thought when you wanted to upgrade a mac you just threw it away and bought a new one.... – Hardwareguy Aug 18 '09 at 14:19
Never had any problem with the DisplayPort-to-DVI converters - we have about 15 of them. Not used any with the 4870 though. – teabot Aug 18 '09 at 14:26
The only bad thing about the mini DP to DVI connector is the fact that you have to buy one, I've used one on my MBP with zero problems. – Hardwareguy Aug 18 '09 at 14:31
Thanks for the info on the DP to DVI connectors! Maybe the reports I've heard are user errors. – MattK Aug 18 '09 at 15:58
@Hardwareguy Nah, with the Mac Pro, you get one round of upgrades, and THEN you throw it away and buy a new one! – MattK Aug 18 '09 at 15:59
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Anandtech was pretty impressed with the GTX 285 (here's their review) but you could try updating the firmware on a PC version to save a few bucks, though you'd still need to buy the power adapters from apple.

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