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Thread: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

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    DR
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    Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Prelude - as you know I've been doing a fair bit of MacPro upgrading: (with extra thanks to my special helper - you know who you are but I am not going to name you...!)

    HEXUS.net - Article :: Apple Mac Pro: the ultimate workstation - upgraded : Page - 1/2
    HEXUS.net - Article :: Upgrading your Mac Pro's RAM - five minutes saves £200 : Page - 1/2
    HEXUS.net - Article :: Upgrading your Mac Pro's hard drives and WiFi: save money and have fun : Page - 1/2
    HEXUS.net - Article :: When dual Xeon 2.8GHz CPUs aren't fast enough: upgrading a Mac Pro to dual 3.2GHz monsters : Page - 1/4

    .... now it is running an 8800GT instead of the 2600 which it came with.

    I've even got the offical Apple cable too so it runs off the mainboard rather than some molex hack - I bought the cable from here 922-7128 NVIDIA Quadro FX 4500 power Cable Apple Mac Parts and Repairs from VIS Ltd it cost me £14 + £7 postage I believe - and took 2 weeks to turn up - they import them from the USA.

    I literally powered down the system and booted up with the new card, no need to restart OSX found the card and just worked.

    If you want to flash a card for your MacPro you need this BIOS - 8800GT Mac Bios

    You then boot off a bootable disk and you need NVFlash (Must be 5.57 or higher!) - grab it from here - NVIDIA NvFlash 5.63 download from MVKTECH.net

    ** UPDATED LINK ABOVE! **

    Before nuking your card do this - To see your ROM ID using the Nvflash tool the command is: nvflash --check

    You need to have the 1MBIT rom in order to allow you to load the 64BIT EFI based BIOS

    Pic


    Proof


    I got to thank young James Smith (JARS) for flashing the card for me (and finding one which has the right size rom chip) and sending it to me - just so everyone knows which card I am running it's this one: HEXUS.net - Review :: Inno3D GeForce 8800 GT 512MiB Overclock: the best one yet? : Page - 1/10

    The donor system was a Mac Pro 2008 - Dual 2.8GHz Quad Core with 2GB Ram a 2600XT and a 320GB HDD it's been totally hacked apart and is now:

    Dual 3.2GHz Quad Core Harpertown
    10GB RAM
    4 x 500GB Drive
    1 x 8800GT

    It's been interesting path - and I am going to hopefully run this system for a while - there is one last thing left to do - change the optical drive to a SATA one since the one it ships with simply sucks.
    Last edited by DR; 17-03-2008 at 01:44 PM.

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    DR
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    Re: Mac Pro - Upgraded Again

    All we need now is SLI or Crossfire - so many spare connectors....

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    DR
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    Re: Mac Pro - Upgraded Again

    ...benchmarks will follow later - I've got work to do (shocking I know!)

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    enjoying this series of Mc-tinkering going on...its good to know you can at least update/upgrade bits in these machines.
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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    This machine you can upgrade nearly everything - I'd be tempted to put a Blu-ray drive in and see what happens

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Love how this is the first time I've seen a gfx card the way (I think) they are supposed to be... ie the right way up!
    ~'Armaments, universal debt, and planned obsolescence--those are the three pillars of Western prosperity'~ Aldous Huxley




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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Yeah - I agree it's due to Apple (obv) not following the MS/Intel outlined 'PC Specs' and 'ATX' specifications - I've always wanted companies to do this.

    I am convinced we have seen one company have the card the right way up made for the PC Market... I will try and dig out the link - I know HEXUS has covered it - CeBIT or Computex show...

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Quote Originally Posted by DR View Post
    Yeah - I agree it's due to Apple (obv) not following the MS/Intel outlined 'PC Specs' and 'ATX' specifications - I've always wanted companies to do this.

    I am convinced we have seen one company have the card the right way up made for the PC Market... I will try and dig out the link - I know HEXUS has covered it - CeBIT or Computex show...

    It's always annoyed me too. Never made any sense.

    Nice to see that there is cheaper way to get a 8800 in the mac pro too.

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Looks good, I ordered the 8800 as a BTO for my mac pro, but when a software SLI hack is created (which it will be given time) I'll be using this method to put in a second card I think

    My Mac Pro has finally shipped today, so needless to say a little excited now as it could be here anytime in the nexy 7 days

    Quote Originally Posted by AppleUK
    The expected delivery time for your order is 1 - 2 days.
    Please note that these are business days and that this is an estimated lead-time only.

    Two 2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeo
    2GB (2x1GB)
    NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT 512MB
    320GB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb
    One 16x SuperDrive
    AIRPORT EXTREME-INT
    APPLE MIGHTY MOUSE
    WIRED KEYBD/MAC OS X-GBR.

    Would be nice if I had the money to do an upgrade like you have DR - but on the plus side the fact that you can do it means that in the future when I can afford it so can I Only upgrade i'm doing is putting in some ram from OWC - its less than 1/4 of apples price..and half that of crucial, crazy isnt it. ($125 shipped for 2x1gb - thats about £70! Even with any applicable duty+vat it still works out cheaper)

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    I'm having no luck with this. I flashed my GeForce 8800 as suggested and the Mac STILL does not recognize the card. I've got a Mac Pro with 2x 3.0GHz Quad Core CPUs...

    Any ideas?

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    will this work with the "old" mac pro? late 2007 ? 32 EFI

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Wow this is awesome never heard or seen anyone do this before.

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Quote Originally Posted by EmilGH View Post
    I'm having no luck with this. I flashed my GeForce 8800 as suggested and the Mac STILL does not recognize the card. I've got a Mac Pro with 2x 3.0GHz Quad Core CPUs...

    Any ideas?
    What bios chip size has your card got? if it is 1mbit one it should work fine....

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    Quote Originally Posted by dragonmoony View Post
    will this work with the "old" mac pro? late 2007 ? 32 EFI
    Nope - it's a 64bit only mod I am afraid - the 32bit EFI should be floating around soon since the cards have just been released by Apple

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    Exclamation Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    DR, can you post a step-by-step of how to do this? I have a Gigabyte GeForce 8800 GT (GV-NX88T512HP) that I want to flash to get to work with my Mac Pro (2008). Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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    Re: Mac Pro - 8800GT Upgrade / Bios Flash Mod

    This might be a dumb question.... but I dont want to mess anything up. Im having trouble downloading the ROM for the 8800. Also... can anyone link me to a tutorial of NVFlash and do I need a PC to do some of these steps? Im just a little weary!! Thanks!!

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