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Graphics Card/Video Related Articles
Nvidia Graphics Driver Update
for OS X 10.10.2
(Mar 2015) Download page for Nvidia Quadro/Geforce driver 343.02.02f04 for OS X 10.10.2 (build 14C1514). This driver update for OS X 10.10.2 with Security Update 2015-003 installed.
Nvidia CUDA Update
for OS X 10.10.x to 10.8.x
(Mar 2015) Download and notes on Nvidia CUDA 7.0.29 Update for OS X 10.10.x-10.8.x. (As before, it has a note that users of older generation GPUs should use CUDA 6.5.45 from Jan. 28th, 2015.)
Nvidia Graphics Driver Update
for OS X 10.9.5
(Mar 2015) See post for download of Nvidia Quadro/Geforce Graphics driver 334.01.03.f02 for OS X 10.9.5 build 13F1066. This driver update is for the OS X 10.9.5 build after installing the March 9th Security Update 2015-002. (Page also includes link to OS X CUDA v7.0.29.)
Nvidia Graphics Driver Update
for OS X 10.8.5
(Mar 2015) See post for download of Nvidia Quadro/Geforce Graphics driver 313.01.04.f02 for OS X 10.8.5 build 12F2501. This driver update is for the OS X 10.8.5 build after installing Security Update 2015-002. (Page also has link to OS X CUDA v7.0.29.)
Early 2011 to Early 2013 MacBook Pro Repair Extension Program for Video/GPU Issues
(Feb 2015) Link to Apple's repair program posted Feb. 19th, 2015. "Apple has determined that a small percentage of MacBook Pro systems may exhibit distorted video, no video, or unexpected system restarts. These MacBook Pro systems were sold between February 2011 and December 2013." (See linked page for details including info on refunds if you paid for a repair previously.)
2011 MacBook Pro GPU Problems/Logic Board Replacements
(June 2014) Notes on repeated failures/repairs (logic board replacements) of 2011 MacBook Pros including a reader report on getting a Late 2013 MacBook Pro (retina) replacement after the 3 repairs/4th failure. Includes link to 800+ page Apple forum thread from 2011 MacBook Pro owners and Petition to Apple to replace/fix all affected MBPs. (Update - see above for Feb 2015 Apple repair program for affected models.
2007 Mac Pro w/PC Radeon 7970 running OS X Mavericks
(Dec 2013) Reader's notes on his 2007 Mac Pro 2,1 running OS X 10.9 Mavericks via Tiamo's Boot EFI patch with a (PC) Radeon 7970 graphics card. (Using a cable mod for 8-pin aux power.)
27" iMac AMD Radeon 6970M
Failures/Replacement Program
(Aug. 16, 2013) Apple notes "some AMD Radeon HD 6970M video cards used in 27inch iMac computers with 3.1GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 or 3.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processors may fail, causing the computer's display to appear distorted, white or blue with vertical lines, or to turn black..." (see page for full details/info on range of affected models)
EVGA GeForce GTX-680
Mac Edition
(Apr. 4, 2013) Mac GeForce GTX 680 with 2GB GDDR5, PCIe 2.0. See Press release and product page. (My site sponsor now has EVGA GTX 680 Mac Edition listed.)
Nvidia GTX 570 in
Mac Pro (OS X 10.8.x)
w/Benchmarks vs 8800GT
Article from a 2008 Mac Pro owner (running OS X Mountain Lion) on an Nvidia GTX-570 video card upgrade (bought on auction site) that replaced an Nvidia 8800GT card. Report includes benchmarks vs the previous 8800GT card including LuxMark 2.0, smallluxGPU, OpenGL, Cinebench, NovaBench and FPS.
Nvidia Quadro K5000
for Mac Pro
(Sept 7, 2012) Link is to Nvidia's product page for the Mac Quadro K5000. (Historically Quadro cards in OS X have often been expensive disappointments as far as performance for the cost.)
More on 15" Mid-2010 MacBook Pro Video Problems and Warranty Repair Extension
(Aug 2012) Report from an affected 15in Mid-2010 MacBook Pro owner on multiple motherboard replacements to fix Video/GPU problems. Includes links/notes on apple's updated article on the topic that (as of 7/31/2012) extends the warranty repair for this problem to 3 years from date of purchase, with a note in the doc on 'extensions as necessary'.
(Also includes links to previous posts here on Mid-2010 MacBook Pro 15" (w/Nvidia GT330M) video problems going back to fall 2011, the evolving apple support document on the problem and apple's previously posted Video/OS updates for 15" 2010 MacBook Pros (OS X Lion & Snow Leopard) which may not fix the problem so they added the extended repair service for affected models.)
2010 MacBook Pro 13" owner notes on Nvidia 320M Problems
(July 2012) Notes/links from owners of MacBook Pros with w/Nvidia GT320M graphics about problems/failures they have seen and/or had repaired. Includes links to threads on this problem with screenshots (checkerboard patterns, etc) and repair/replacement reports. Like some others, a reader was offered a replacement motherboard but is concerned about a repeat of the problem over time. (FYI: See above for info on similar problems with 15in (GT330M) Mid-2010 MacBook Pros which have an apple doc/repair extension program.)
MacBook Pro (Nvidia 8600M) GPU Failures/Repairs
(Aug 2012-Jul 2008) Our original article from July 2008 (updated 100+ times) on flawed Nvidia GPU/Failures including the 8600M used in some series of MacBook Pros. Includes Apple's doc on the issue that notes affected MacBook Pro model production ranges and a warranty extension, Tips for affected model owners, and many reader reports (good and bad) on their experience with the extended repair program. (FYI: Apple doc on this updated to note the repair program ended Dec. 7th, 2012.)
Nvidia 8800GT Card
Oven-Bake/Solder Reflow
Tip (Feedback)
(Apr 2012) A few more positive reports on the "Oven Bake"/solder reflow fix (example youtube video) for some Nvidia 8800GT card problems in Apple's Mac Pro forums. Some earlier/older threads on Nvidia 8800GT card problems have updated posts (here and here) on the oven-bake fix. As always, YMMV. (Some MP owners had also tried older tips on removing dust buildup, redoing thermal paste, SMCfanControl to boost case fan speeds for better cooling, etc.) I was skeptical when I first heard about it but oven baking posts in Nvidia's forums go back to 2010.
Late 2008 MacBook Pro EFI Firmware Update 2.8
(Late Feb 2012) Per Apple's Download page, for Late 2008 15in MacBook Pros and said to fix a graphics issue that may cause internal display flicker.
Reader Feedback on Mac ATI 5870 graphics card
(Dec 2011) Replies to a reader request for Mac 5870 user feedback from longer term use. (i.e. any app or OS issues seen over time, would they buy again, etc). Also includes some owner's notes on flashed models (including 6870s) as well as comparison of 5870 vs 6870 hardware features and clock rates.
Reader Feedback on Flashed Radeon 6870 in Mac Pro (2008)
2008 Mac Pro owner notes on using a flashed PC Radeon 6870 video card in his Mac Pro running OS X Lion. (Using unofficial 64bit EFI rom noted earlier.)
2010 MacBook Pro 15"
Video Driver Update
(to fix intermittent black screen/no video/freezes)
(Oct. 2011) Hopefully a fix for this issue (intermittent freezes/black screen, no video) noted here on 10/13/2011. Initially the updater was only for Lion, but Apple later posted an updater for 10.6.8 users.
(BTW: The Apple doc has a note that if symptoms persist after the update, Apple service is reqd. They also note an extended service period (beyond the std warranty) for this issue.)
64-bit EFI ROM
for Radeon 6870
(Aug 2011) Post regarding a 64bit EFI ROM for flashing PC Radeon 6870s for use in Mac Pro 2008 and later. (EFI64 models, Mac Pro 3,1 and later models.)
Report of PC Radeon 6870 working w/OS X 10.6.6 Drivers from 2011 MBP
(Mar 2011) Posts regarding ATI drivers (kext) from early 2011 MacBook Pro's 10.6.6 build's working with reference (std/PC) Radeon 6870 cards (less boot screen). Also said to work with PC/ref 5870s as well.
Apple Exchange/Refund Program for certain S/N Radeon 2600 XT's w/Distorted Video
(Feb 2011) Apple has posted a doc with info on certain S/N ATI 2600 with Distorted Video issues that they're offering to replace with a 'version 2' of the card. (Or provide a refund if you purchased a replacement card due to this defect previously. Per a report the amount was capped at $250.)
(FYI: Apple doc on this was updated Dec. 7th, 2012 to note this repair program has ended.)
Apple replacement/refund program for certain S/N ATI X1900 XT's w/distorted video
(Sept 2010) Apple has posted a doc with info on certain S/N ATI X1900 XT's with Distorted Video issues that they're (finally) offering to replace (with Nvidia 8800GTs reportedly as X1900's are no longer available). The doc also notes a refund is possible if you previously paid for a replacement for one of the affected (S/N) X1900 XTs. (Several readers have sent feedback on the replacement/refund program as well.)
2009 Mac Pro owner running GTX-285 and ATI 4870 Cards (via Aux power Y adapters)
(April 2010) Comments from a 2009 Mac Pro owner on using both an Nvidia GTX-285 and an ATI 4870 graphics card. (By using Y adapters off the Mac Pros 2 Aux Power Connectors, since each card requires 2 power connections.) I know in the past some Mac Pro owners had used ext PS or adapters off the PATA Optical drive connections in pre-09 Mac Pros. And yes, he knows that apple lists 300W Max for the PCIe cards in the manual.
XFX 4870/1GB VRAM flashed for Mac Pro Use
(July 2009) Reader notes/links on flashing a PC XFX brand Radeon 4870/1MB vram for use in his (PCIe 1.0) Mac Pro.
EVGA GTX 285
Mac Edition Review

(vs ATI 4870 and GT120)
(June 2009) Review/comparisons of EVGA's Nvidia GeForce GTX 285 Mac edition vs the Mac ATI 4870 and the base Geforce GT120 card, tested in a 2009 Mac Pro 8-core 2.66GHz system. Includes pages on apps/game tests, power (watts) usage, benchmarks and Bootcamp/Vista use. (Including EVGA's Precision utility that supports the Logitech G15 keyboard's LCD display for realtime FPS, GPU temperature and clock speed reporting.)
Review of ATI Radeon HD 3870 Mac/PC Edition
vs Nvidia 8800GT and
ATI Radeon X1900
(June 2008) Review of the ATO Radeon HD 3870 Mac/PC Edition PCI-Express 2.0 card (backward compatible with PCI-Express 1.0 Mac Pro Systems). Includes tests in OS X Leopard and Windows Vista vs Mac Nvida 8800GT and ATI X1900XT cards in a 2008 Mac Pro (PCIe 2.0) as well as previous PCIe 1.0 Mac Pro (2007/2006) models.
EVGA UV16 Plus
USB-to-DVI adapter
Mac Mini owner review of the EVGA UV16 Plus USB-to-DVI adapter to drive a 2nd monitor (or TV) via a Displaylink Mac driver. Also includes link to Feb 2007 report from a Mini owner on the Matrox DualHead2Go.
ATI X1900 XT Artifacts/Overheating Notes/Tips
More reader notes, tips, screenshots, etc on ATI X1900 XT display artifacts (from overheating). Included are more comments on card cooler swaps, using SMCfancontrol to increase Mac Pro bay fan speeds and card revisions.
Overheating X1900 XT due to Dust Clogging Heatsink Fins
ATI X1900 XT display artifacts (from overheating) caused by clogged heatsink fins on the card. Worth checking if you've used one of these cards for any period of time, especially in a dusty enviroment.
Display/Monitor Related Articles
Apple Thunderbolt Display Firmware Update v1.2 Info/Download/Tips:
(Nov 2014) Per Apple download page "This update improves reliability when connecting devices to the Apple Thunderbolt Display, and addresses a rare issue that may cause the display to go black." (Updated post with info on install/actual display firmware version(s) after the update and settings tip that may help with the display 'blackout'/flicker problem.)
Tips for HDCP Errors/Problems playing iTunes HD Video
(2014) Notes and Tips to try if you're seeing HDCP errors or purchased HD video playback problems despite your display being HDCP compatible. Some OS X software/settings can trigger HDCP problems like screen sharing and some screen capture software. (Includes a note to check sharing status after upgrading to OS X Yosemite.)
Mac Radeon 7950 user notes on Triple Displays
Info and notes from a Mac Sapphire Radeon 7950 owner on reported resolution problems with his three connected Dell displays.
Radeon 7950 ROM Switch Tip/Fix for DisplayPort Problems in OS X 10.9.2
(Mar 2014) Some Sapphire Radeon 7950 owners said after the OS X 10.9.2 update the card's Displayports were not working (although DVI port was OK). A 7950 owner posted a tip - ensure the card's rom switch was set to the EFI (not UEFI/PC) position. Apparently some had never checked/changed the switch position and only after the 10.9.2 update was there a problem. (Updated with more info including notes on possible reversed switches and reports of no difference in either switch setting.)
Late 2012 Mac Mini HDMI Video Problems/Notes/Tips
(Mar 2013-Oct 2012) Coverage of Late 2012 Mac Mini HDMI display dropouts/intermittent black screens/video noise ("snow") and info from Intel's own forum on HD4000 'intermittent flicker' issues. [Includes Info on Apple's EFI Update to fix HDMI Flicker and notes on OS X 10.8.3.] Also has my own tests with a Late 2012 Mac Mini using an HDMI Samsung LCD Monitor (1920x1200) and an LG LM7600 (1080P) HDTV tested with a direct HDMI connection and via an A/V Receiver. Unlike many others, no HDMI/video issues so far. (Tested OK w/MDP 27in Cinema Display too.)   Included are tips for common problems like washed-out displays, an EDID patch script to force RGB mode on ext. displays and notes on HDCP issues. (Also updated to include info on DIY Shielding of 2012 Mini's internal Bluetooth module to reduce interference from USB 3.0 devices and other issues related to late-2012 mac mini.)
Apple TV / Related Articles
Tips for Unable to Restore an Apple TV using iTunes
(2013) Info from Apple with USB cable tips for restoring an Apple TV that has Problems/Errors or doesn't appear in iTunes.
Apple TV 320GB Hard Drive Upgrade Guide - A Better Way (IMHO)
(Mar 2010) First generation Apple TV Hard Drive Upgrade, using a method that avoids ripping off the entire bottom rubber cover. Guide includes pictures, take-apart notes and more.
DVD Decoders/DVD Player/DVD Software Related Articles
Playing Blu-Rays in OS X
(using VLC and MakeMKV)
(Jan. 2010) Notes on using freeware VLC player & MakeMKV to playback BR movies in OS X.
Encoding Speed Tests w/Elgato Turbo.264 Hardware Encoder
Reader tests of ElGato's Turbo.264 USB 2.0 Hardware Encoder vs standard Quicktime H.264 export speed with an iBook G4, Quad G5, Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro and iMac Core Duo.
Cooling, Tips & Tweaking Articles
(for older video cards)
Nvidia 8800GT w/Accelero S1 rev2 cooler
Short article w/photos from a Mac Pro owner on using an Accelero S1 Rev 2 cooler (passive) on his 8800GT. (Updated with temperature tests (Fanless) vs stock cooler and notes on adding a fan to this cooler.)
Arctic Cooling Accelero S1 / Revoltec Graphics Freezer Pro (for ATI X1900 XT)
Comments, Notes and Photos from a Mac Pro owner on quieting his X1900 XT card using an Arctic Cooling Accelero S1. (Includes notes on fit problems with the Revoltec Graphics Freezer Pro in the Mac Pro, although he's using it in a PC on a X1950 card.)
Accelero S1 Rev 2 on ATI X800 (in G5 Tower)
Short article w/photos from a G5 Tower owner on using an Accelero S1 Rev 2 cooler (passive) on his ATI X800 card - with mods to G5 tower's air deflector required to clear the S1 R2's heatsink.
ATIcellerator II - ATI Overclocking Utility
Reports on using the ATIcellerator II dynamic (on the fly) Overclocking utility from owners of Desktop and Powerbook/iBook ATI onboard graphics users. Some reports include performance tests of stock GPU/memory clock speeds vs OC'd speeds.


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