ATI/AMD Radeon HD cards in Mac Pro

By , June 23, 2011 9:40 pm

Update: Just went and exchanged the HD 6450 for an HD 6670. This one works great, runs Starcraft II on High and doesn’t crash the machine!

After some discussion with a coworker, I decided to try putting a Sapphire Radeon HD6450 into my Mac Pro, since the 8800GT was a real power hog and heater.

Just my luck that today the 10.6.8 update was released, containing – you guessed it – HD6xxx drivers!

So I ran the update, then popped in the HD6450, and what do you know, it works! Only two problems: First, no EFI support which means no boot screen (white/grey apple). Second, it seems to crash when launching any game. I tried Lord of the Rings: Return of the King and Starcraft II, and both caused the screen to go blank and kernel panic.

Anyway, nice experiment, and at least it works for regular desktop work….

For anyone interested, here are all the Radeon HD6000 series cards supported by the 10.6.8 kexts, IDs and names.

  • 0×67681002  CAICOS 6450M
  • 0×67701002  NI CAICOS [AMD Radeon HD 6400 Series]
  • 0×67791002  NI Caicos [AMD RADEON HD 6450]
  • 0×67601002  NI Seymour [AMD Radeon HD 6470M]
  • 0×67611002  NI Seymour [AMD Radeon HD 6430M]
  • 0×67501002  Turks [AMD Radeon HD 6500 series]
  • 0×67581002  Turks XT [AMD Radeon HD 6600 Series]
  • 0×67591002  NI Turks [AMD Radeon HD 6500]
  • 0×67401002  Whistler XT [AMD Radeon HD 6700M Series]
  • 0×67411002  NI Whistler [AMD Radeon HD 6600M Series]
  • 0×67381002  Barts XT [ATI Radeon HD 6800 Series]
  • 0×67391002  Barts PRO [ATI Radeon HD 6800 Series]
  • 0×67201002  Blackcomb [AMD Radeon HD 6900M Series]
  • 0×67221002 ATI Radeon HD 6950
  • 0×67181002  Cayman XT [AMD Radeon HD 6900 Series]

5 Responses to “ATI/AMD Radeon HD cards in Mac Pro”

  1. Bug says:

    Which Mac Pro are you using? It’s been a nightmare trying to find a card for my MacPro1,1 that works with EFI, but the HD 6670 would pretty much be the best card that I can afford…if it works…

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    • Matthieu says:

      I’m using the HD 6670 a MacPro1,1. It doesn’t work with EFI though, so the screens are black until the OS boots.
      I just kept the original 7300GT in another slot in case I ever need the boot menu.

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  2. erik says:

    Hi,

    I’ve installed the HD 6450 into my macpro 3,1, same issue with you..no efi and sometimes the screen go blank. I’ve noticed that osx 10.6.8 recognizes the graphic card as Radeon HD NI40, so i think that’s the cause of the kernel panic. I was wondering with the HD 6670, did the system recognize it well in the system profile?

    Thanks

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    • Matthieu says:

      No, it shows as NI40 as well. From my further research I’ve found that just because it’s the same graphics chip doesn’t mean it will work. For example, I have two HD5450s, one Sapphire and one eVGA. in my hackintosh Dell Optiplex 755, one of the cards works fine and the other is unstable.

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  3. erik says:

    I’m using HD6450 from saphire and I’m not even using dvdplayer/steam but sometimes the screen goes black and blank. For the 6670, did you use the one from sapphire too and is it be more stable in Lion rather than in Snow Leo in terms of the driver and the performance?

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