Nvidia reveals Mac Pro-compatible Titan Xp PCI-e GPU, macOS drivers for Pascal-based video...

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware
On the heels of the 2013 Mac Pro price improvements, Nvidia has announced a brand new Titan Xp video card using the Pascal architecture, with a driver release coming soon allowing any Nvidia Pascal-based video cards to be installed in compatible older PCI-e Mac Pros.




The new PCI-E based Nvidia Titan Xp has 12GB of GDDR5X memory running at 11.4 gigabits per second, 3840 CUDA cores running at 1.6 GHz. Nvidia claims that the card allows for 12 TFLOP performance. The Titan Xp is available now for $1200 from Nvidia.

Also announced is the April release of a new version of the beta drivers for Nvidia cards, commonly used in the PCI-e Mac Pro and external GPU solutions. For the first time, Pascal-based cards will be able to be used, opening up the Titan Xp and Nvidia series 10 cards including the previously released Nvidia 1080ti for Macs with PCI-e slots.

The current Nvidia beta drivers require macOS 10.11 El Capitan or 10.12 Sierra, and were released on March 28. Assuming that the OS requirements aren't limited to macOS 10.12 Sierra, the drivers should function on the Mac Pro 3,1; 4,1; and 5,1 from 2008, 2009, and 2010 respectively.

Should the drivers be restricted to macOS 10.12 Sierra, then compatibility is limited to the 5,1 Mac Pro, or the 4,1 Mac Pro with a firmware flashed with a third party utility so it identifies itself as a 5,1 Mac Pro, as Sierra is incompatible with older hardware.

Without some form of external GPU solution, the new Titan Xp isn't compatible with the 2013 cylindrical Mac Pro.

On Tuesday, Apple lowered the pricing on higher-end Mac Pro cylinders, and noted that it had a complete modular redesign of the Mac Pro in progress for release at some point in 2018.

Nvidia was seeking engineers in September for the company's Mac graphics drivers team. The job postings were seeking experience with Apple's Metal cross-platform application programming interface.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 36
    Without some form of external GPU solution, the new Titan Xp isn't compatible with the 2013 cylindrical Mac Pro.
    That's an an odd way of saying "it is compatible with an external PCIe solution."

    That's the question I'm asking myself, not "hey, I wonder if this PCIe card will fit inside the 2013 Mac Pro," because I already know that it won't.
  • Reply 2 of 36
    Are there PCIe enclosures that connect via Thunderbolt?
  • Reply 3 of 36
  • Reply 4 of 36
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,704member
    Now if someone could give me $1200....It would be nice to also see the 1070 and 1080 available for the Mac as well. That would plug right into my Mid-2012 Mac Pro. I currently used a non-Mac Geforce 980 and it works great. 
    edited April 6
  • Reply 5 of 36
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,247member
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    Soli
  • Reply 6 of 36
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,704member
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
  • Reply 7 of 36
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,247member
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    I have an original Mac Pro 1,1 which I maxed out everything. Had to reflash a Radeon graphics card 79xx something. New eight core Xeons and 32 GB Ram, USB 3, 1TB SSD, HDMI, running Yosemite. All together around $650 for the upgrades. Even with all that it is still not nearly as fast as my everyday driver - a top of the line iMac 5K. As far as building a Hackintosh, I agree it is not worth the hassle and I have not seen many builds using dual Xeons which is the only reason I would ever consider it. I would have bought a new Mac Pro in a heartbeat had they kept the original form factor with just the updates to the fans for EU compliance.
    edited April 6
  • Reply 8 of 36
    SoliSoli Posts: 2,817member
    The price doesn't seem to warrant the investment. Let's say you're not limited to exactly $1200+tax indefinitely, what would this offer you over investing in a new 5K iMac for the next several years?
  • Reply 9 of 36
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    The GeForce 1070 and 1080 will be supported by the same drivers that push this card. 1070 is about $350, with the 1080 about $530. 1070 is about 6.5 teraflops, with the 1080 around 10.7.
  • Reply 10 of 36
    What about the Sonnet stuff? I don't have any experience with them, but they don't seem that hack-y (they have both TB-2 and TB-3 expansion chassis):
    http://www.sonnettech.com/product/thunderbolt/index.html
  • Reply 11 of 36
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 2,704member
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    The GeForce 1070 and 1080 will be supported by the same drivers that push this card. 1070 is about $350, with the 1080 about $530. 1070 is about 6.5 teraflops, with the 1080 around 10.7.
    Nice! However, you might not get boot screen support, correct? 
  • Reply 12 of 36
    JinTechJinTech Posts: 152member
    What about the Sonnet stuff? I don't have any experience with them, but they don't seem that hack-y (they have both TB-2 and TB-3 expansion chassis):
    http://www.sonnettech.com/product/thunderbolt/index.html
    Sonnet has been around forever so I would say they are dependable. As are OtherWorldComputing/MacSales, with this solution:

    https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/Thunderbolt/PCIe_Chassis/Mercury_Helios/
  • Reply 13 of 36
    macxpress said:
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    The GeForce 1070 and 1080 will be supported by the same drivers that push this card. 1070 is about $350, with the 1080 about $530. 1070 is about 6.5 teraflops, with the 1080 around 10.7.
    Nice! However, you might not get boot screen support, correct? 
    Yeah, there's no boot screen support.
  • Reply 14 of 36
    JinTech said:
    What about the Sonnet stuff? I don't have any experience with them, but they don't seem that hack-y (they have both TB-2 and TB-3 expansion chassis):
    http://www.sonnettech.com/product/thunderbolt/index.html
    Sonnet has been around forever so I would say they are dependable. As are OtherWorldComputing/MacSales, with this solution:

    https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/Thunderbolt/PCIe_Chassis/Mercury_Helios/
    This isn't that simple, as Apple doesn't support it. 

    It's not the hardware that's hack-y, it's what you have to do to the OS to get it to use the graphics card. 

    Also, with smaller enclosures, you have to be sure that the power supply is sufficient to drive the card. The Mercury Helios has about a 150W power supply -- way too little to use with most PCI-E GPUs.
  • Reply 15 of 36
    JinTech said:
    What about the Sonnet stuff? I don't have any experience with them, but they don't seem that hack-y (they have both TB-2 and TB-3 expansion chassis):
    http://www.sonnettech.com/product/thunderbolt/index.html
    Sonnet has been around forever so I would say they are dependable. As are OtherWorldComputing/MacSales, with this solution:

    https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/Thunderbolt/PCIe_Chassis/Mercury_Helios/
    This isn't that simple, as Apple doesn't support it. 

    It's not the hardware that's hack-y, it's what you have to do to the OS to get it to use the graphics card. 

    Also, with smaller enclosures, you have to be sure that the power supply is sufficient to drive the card. The Mercury Helios has about a 150W power supply -- way too little to use with most PCI-E GPUs.
    Doh! I wasn't thinking about the "Apple doesn't support it" part!

    I wonder what the chances are that we'll see native e-gpu officially supported by Apple in the future. I suppose it may end up being moot if next years Mac Pro becomes modularized or otherwise more expandable.
  • Reply 16 of 36
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 29,087member
    Soli said:
    The price doesn't seem to warrant the investment. Let's say you're not limited to exactly $1200+tax indefinitely, what would this offer you over investing in a new 5K iMac for the next several years?
    It's an interesting question. I've still got my 2009 Mac Pro. I was looking at the 2013 model, but didn't want to buy something that radical the first year it came out. Since I retired in 2004 (no, I'm not THAT old!) I haven't found the need to upgrade machines every two years. But we all know what happened with that machine, so I never upgraded.

    but now, with the prospect of a new Mac Pro, everything changes. But, there is still a problem. My machine is getting flaky, and I can't use a new monitor as I'd like to. So, since the new Mac Pro won't be out this year, and from what I'm reading, Apple did NOT say it will be available next year either, I'm thinking of buying a 12 core 2012, 3.46GHz machine with 64GB RAM for $2,000. Crappy video card with it, and no drives, which I don't care about anyway.

    so, with this card, I'm thinking. If I buy this for the 2012 model, it will work pretty well, much better than with my 2009 model, which can't run 10.12. The 2012 model will have at least one more OS upgrade to 10.13, and likely 10.14. That will keep it fairly current.

    now, if I do that, and the new Mac Pro comes out sometime in 2018, or early 2019, I should be able to take that card and transfer it, even though the new machine will have PCI 3, at least, because this card is good for PCI 3, where it performs better than it does on a PCI 2 bus (double the bandwidth per channel). I'll still get very good performance compared to then current cards, so it seems worth it, as I'll have it for several years before upgrading cards again.
    Soli
  • Reply 17 of 36
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 29,087member

    macxpress said:
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    The GeForce 1070 and 1080 will be supported by the same drivers that push this card. 1070 is about $350, with the 1080 about $530. 1070 is about 6.5 teraflops, with the 1080 around 10.7.
    Nice! However, you might not get boot screen support, correct? 
    Yeah, there's no boot screen support.
    Wouldn't this card have boot support with a 2012 Mac Pro running 10.12 and later? I don't see why not. Is there an EFI problem from that machine that would prevent it?
  • Reply 18 of 36
    melgross said:

    macxpress said:
    macxpress said:
    volcan said:
    I wouldn't bother with an old Mac Pro. Too expensive of an upgrade for an old machine. Might work for a new Hackintosh if building one wasn't such a hassle.
    If you have a later gen MacPro its still a very viable Mac. That being said yes, $1200 is too expensive, but if you really need the GPU power and want a Mac this is your route. Maybe down the road they'll develop a GeForce 1070 and/or 1080 which should be much more affordable. 

    Building a Hackintosh is an absolute continuous pain in the ass. I'd never do it...its not worth it and I don't understand why people do it. Just buy a Mac and be done with it instead of always wondering when the software will break. I want to use the damn thing, not tinker with it every time something happens that makes macOS not function properly, or at all. 
    The GeForce 1070 and 1080 will be supported by the same drivers that push this card. 1070 is about $350, with the 1080 about $530. 1070 is about 6.5 teraflops, with the 1080 around 10.7.
    Nice! However, you might not get boot screen support, correct? 
    Yeah, there's no boot screen support.
    Wouldn't this card have boot support with a 2012 Mac Pro running 10.12 and later? I don't see why not. Is there an EFI problem from that machine that would prevent it?
    The Titan Xp may or may not, but reference cards using the driver without explicit EFI support don't. The driver loads too late in the boot process.
  • Reply 19 of 36
    ylonylon Posts: 31member
    So excited. Going to now replace my AMD RX 480 8192MB card on my earlier hacked MacPro to run Sierra with maxed out CPUs and RAM. Good times! Now I can get rid of that extra power supply for my video card and still get better performance... :) Nice to hear we'll finally get a MacPro next year that will finally be able to replace our previous ten MacPros. The trash can MacPros just haven't had the space to allow us to upgrade any of our several MacPros.
    edited April 6
  • Reply 20 of 36
    wkgrcwkgrc Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    I have a dual hex core 2010 cheese grater so it seems I'm the ideal candidate to add this. Would be nice if Apple started selling them and supported them- at least guarantied the drivers.  I need to know how large a retina screen I can support. and how many.
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