[rescue] AppleMacanix GFX cards

Jonathan Patschke jp at celestrion.net
Wed Aug 31 13:15:44 CDT 2011

On Wed, 31 Aug 2011, Mark Benson wrote:

> Has anyone here ever nought an Intel Mac Pro compatible graphics card
> from the eBay seller 'applemacanix'?
> They seem to specialise in re-flashing PC cards for use in a Mac, or
> reselling refurb'd (ie had the dust blown out and tested) Apple cards.

I've not bought from that seller particularly, but my Mac Pro has an
Nvidia 8800GT that was flashed with Mac firmware by an eBay seller.  So
far, it's given me no problems.

Double-check that the card has the correct firmware for your Mac.
MacPro1,1 and MacPro2,1 need 32-bit firmware; later models need 64-bit
firmware.  Also, if the card is significantly newer than what your Mac
shipped with, make sure you have the latest graphics updates applied
before you install the card (not a problem if you're running 10.6 and are

I had no luck at all flashing a card on my own.  At least in the case of
Nvidia cards, the model number of the card seems to refer to a wide
variety of different processor and board revisions.  Finding a specific
card with both a large-enough flash chip for the Mac firmware plus the
correct processor/board revisions for the firmware image was far more
trouble than paying twice the price of a used generic card for something
guaranteed to work.  If the seller has a card supported by OS X, and they
got the firmware loaded, the chances are very good that it'll work for you
with no problems.

There are, however, problems with some cards that have multiple DVI
outputs that cause the secondary DVI port to not work.  Check on the
forums for reports on the card you're looking to buy if this would be a
dealbreaker for you.  Most work just fine, though.

One final thing: make sure the power cable is included.  The PCI express
power connectors on the Mac Pro are of a smaller pitch than those on a PC;
the cable isn't expensive, but it's not something you'll likely be able to
find at your local PC parts house.

Jonathan Patschke |
Elgin, TX         | "He who is contented is rich." -- Lao Tzu
USA               |

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