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GTX 690 Video card in Mac

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Todd Yonteck
GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 2, 2012 at 6:47:44 pm

Hey,

I saw a few post regarding the GTX 690 card. Has anyone got this working in a Mac? My understanding is it is supported with Mountain Lion 10.8. However are both GPUs running and working with resolve and Adobe CS6 (I am told this is really a doubled 680). So do those programs see both GPUs or is just seeing one and the other one is going to waste? For those of you who installed it, what about power. Does the mac have enough or did you have to connect to external power supply. The card pulls like 300 watts and NVIDA recommends a 650 watt power supply. Requires two 8 pin power connections as well. Not really even sure how to hook up power supply to a video card in a mac.

My plan was to drop this card in mac along with GeForce 8800 GT as the GUI. In the future would expand by adding more GPU cards to cubix external PCI expansion chassis. Was hoping to put off buying 2700 expansion chassis at this time. But sounds like I may have to go with expansion chassis on power requirements alone.

So if anyone has the GTX 690 working in a Mac running 10.8 let me know. Also let me know what you did to hook up the power.

Thanks for your help.


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Juan Salvo
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 2, 2012 at 11:52:27 pm

That MacPros internal power cannot support a 690.

Colorist | Online Editor | Post Super | VFX Artist | BD Author

http://JuanSalvo.com


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Todd Yonteck
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 3, 2012 at 9:35:42 am

What about in the Cubix expansion chassis. Does resolve see both GPUs on the GTX 690? This would be ideal as you would get two GPUs per slot. Potentially could have 8 GPUs running in the expansion chassis.


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Eric Fiegehen
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 5, 2012 at 9:54:51 pm

Todd - keep in mind that OSX has a 4 GPU limitation. Think GUI + 3x CUDA accelerators. Other than this limitation, yes the Xpander would be able to host at least 2x GTX 690 cards.

Eric Fiegehen
Cubix


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Todd Yonteck
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 8, 2012 at 11:54:46 am

Hey Eric,
Is it possible to run a GUI from the cubix box? I know DaVinci Resolve configuration manual states to have GUI in slot 1 of the Mac. That would be neat to have two GTX690 in the expansion chassis providing GUI/GPU. Then the slots in the mac would be available for other items.


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Eric Fiegehen
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 10, 2012 at 3:30:05 pm

Hi Todd - I'll ask Mic Grover, Cubix Technical Support Manager to comment, but we recommend installing the GUI card in Slot 1 of the Mac Pro. Doing so provides maximum bandwidth for both hardware acceleration processes plus other types of I/O traffic such as reads and writes from 8-channel SAN or RAID cards which you might want to run from inside the Xpander.

Eric


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Eric Fiegehen
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Sep 11, 2012 at 4:34:21 pm

Todd - the following info comes from Cubix Technical Support in reference to your question:

"Cubix has not tested NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690 running in Xpander and connected to Mac Pro yet; however, this should work. Install the HIC in MacPro_Slot2. Install only two GTX 690s in Xpander Desktop 4, for example. Connect two 8-pin auxiliary power connectors to each 690. Connect only one display to only one 690. Boot the Mac Pro and install the Mac OS X driver version 304.00.00f20 dated 20120910 located here: http://www.nvidia.com/object/macosx-304.00.00f20-driver.html."

Eric Fiegehen
Cubix Corporation
ericc@cubix.com
http://www.cubix.com


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Todd Yonteck
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Nov 2, 2012 at 12:25:26 am

Just a little update...

Installed GTX690 in a 2008 MacPro. Worked about 2 hours then Mac crashed and wouldn't restart. I mean dead, no chime on startup. Multiple apple genius visits and multiple attempts to reinstall card failed with same result of dead machine after a couple hours of use with GTX690 installed primarily in MacPro.

Anyway... the GTX690 is working fine on same computer in a Cubix expansion chassis. Running MacOSX 10.8.2, Adobe CS6, DaVinci Resolve 9.03, ProTools HD 10.3 and Red Rocket without any problems at this point. Keeping fingers crossed. Render times and playback speed are notably quicker, though haven't bench tested them yet.

T


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Paulo Kobayashi
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Nov 7, 2012 at 1:31:06 pm

Hey there,
great post, that's exactly what I want to do. I have some questions.

Does Resolve see both GPUs?
Also, if you could give more details about your setup, like, what slot did you connect the Cubix? what is your GUI card and what slot it's connect to? etc...

Thank you in advance.


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Todd Yonteck
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Nov 9, 2012 at 2:06:09 am

Resolve sees both GPUs on the 690. (though note Resolve Lite only runs one)
GUI is GeForce 8800 GT in PCI Slot 1. If you can put a Quadro 4000 in Slot one as it is recommended.
Slot 2 has Cubix GPU-Xpander Desktop 4 with 4 PCI Express 16-Channel Slots
Slot 3 Blackmagic Multibridge Pro
Slot 4 Apple Raid Card

Cubix Expander
Slot 1 GTX 690
Slot 2 Red Rocket
Slot 3 Empty
Slot 4 Avid ProTools HD Core Card

All on 2008 (3,1) MacPro 8 core with 24 Gb RAM. Playing back Red 5k files at 24 fps on 1920x1080 timeline without issues in Resolve. Though a faster raid setup would be a lot better. Card works well with After Effects and Premiere CS6. I am holding out for a MacPro with thunderbolt. Come on Apple, enough with the iPad mini...

Cheers,
Todd


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Paulo Kobayashi
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Nov 16, 2012 at 10:26:00 pm

Thank you very much.


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Stefanita Manea
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Dec 4, 2012 at 10:13:57 am

Hi Todd,

Please tell me what model of Cubix do you use.
I also wander if 2xGTX690 will work, on the same old Mac 3.1 (I have one by myself just empowered with 32GB RAM and GTX660Ti)

Thank you.
Steff


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Todd Yonteck
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Dec 4, 2012 at 1:16:13 pm

Cubix GPU-Xpander Desktop 4

Theoretically the the two GTX690s would work. The operating system and Davinci appear to see the GTX690 as two separate cards. However one of the four GPUs would not be active with OSX as it can only handle 3 GPUs. I would just use a GTX680 and save some cash, unless you are looking at moving these cards over to Windows or another operating system in the future. I am getting decent performance with one GTX 690. Drive speed is also important. Only problem is DSLR H264 encoded movies wont play back at full speed. Not sure if that is CPU issue or if I need more GPU power. Certainly not drive problem. I am playing back Red 5k files at 24fps with multiple nodes no problem.


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Stefanita Manea
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Dec 4, 2012 at 1:27:10 pm

Hi,
Thank you for answering.
Yes, the GTX680 can be an optimal solution, I'll think about it.
Did you do any benchmarking/experiments with two GPU's in CUBIX?
I have doubts that will work similar with SLI. I mean, in fact there is only one PCX used, so the speed is limited to that one. Also, the processors have a limit of allocating PCX resources. The system sees 2 GPU's but this is a mater of driver, I'm afraid. The main idea is to test with one then two identical GPU's and to benchmark the results in order to see the real performance. Of course, I'm not asking you to do that, just thinking... Thanks again, Steff.


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Eric Fiegehen
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Dec 4, 2012 at 5:09:32 pm

Hi Steff,

Keep in mind that PCIe works differently than other I/O transport technologies. Although all 4 Xpander slots share the same host PC / Mac Pro 16-channel slot, each of the Desktop 4 slots are receiving the full 80Gbps, 16-channel bandwidth to the host system's bus. This is due to the way Cubix programs the timing sequences of the PCIe switch sets we use in our products.

Another way to put this is that when you perform benchmarks, each Xpander slot appears in the management utility as 16-channel PCIe receiving full bandwidth from the host system. If the theoretical 80Gbps maximum bandwidth were being used continually (without the application letting up on CUDA cores used and bandwidth maximized), then you would eventually see bus saturation occur over a period of time. However, Cubix has never experienced this condition running Resolve on OSX or Windows (I don't believe Linux configurations have done this either)when connected at PCIe Gen2 16-channel speeds.

Please feel free to contact me or Cubix Technical Support for additional information on this or other related subjects.

Eric Fiegehen
Director, Visualization & GPU Compute Solutions
Cubix Corporation
ericc@cubix.com
http://www.cubix.com


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Damian Smith
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Feb 11, 2013 at 4:41:57 am

Hi Steff,
I am also about to buy a 690 and put it in a desktop expander 2.

However, the varying results above do worry me.

If you were in my situation, knowing the technology better than I, what would you recommend?

My current configuration without the CUBIX is a 5770 card for monitoring with a single quadro 4000 for resolve in my 12 core 2.66 MACpro.

This was absolutely fine in speed until I upgraded to resolve 9.03. Now it just lags on everything. Pro res Alexa plays at about 15fps. Its pretty shit. With three nodes it now drops to 5fps.

Previously, in resolve this same file would have taken 10 nodes to slow that much. Thanks Blackmagic. Awesome.

This is why I have ordered a cubix. Currently on the shelf I have a spare quadro 4000 incase the first fails.
I would see myself putting this in to the CUBIX, with the first one and then one or two more cards depending on which.

Compared to my quadro's, I dont see the 690 as a expensive card. Its about what I paid for the quadro when it was first released.

So I guess what I am asking is - without reinventing the wheel, is the 690 the best option for a MAC CUBIX expansion - to compliment the 2 quardo's or would I get better performance from something else?

Regards
Damian


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SeigeA O'Reilly
Re: GTX 690 Video card in Mac
on Mar 14, 2013 at 8:26:27 am

What kind of speed is this setup getting? Any comparisons for your computer with other configurations? Or some sort of semi-standard Resolve benchmark.
Is it really worth the Cubix box and the 690's?


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