[Update: Get even better performance and macOS Mojave and Metal compatibility with the Radeon RX 580 graphics cards]
The Mac Pro is a performance powerhouse. But that doesn’t just apply to the latest cylindrical model of Apple’s most powerful line of machines. Apple’s 2009-2012 aluminum tower Mac Pro still offers users a reliable workhorse without busting budgets. And one of the best reasons to own a 2009-2012 Mac Pro is how easily these models can be upgraded to suit your needs.
One of the easiest and best upgrades you can make to your 2009-2012 Mac Pro is the graphics card. Whether you use your Mac Pro for gaming, audio or video editing and content creation, upgrading your graphics card will push your machine’s video and graphics capabilities further than ever.
When it comes to graphics cards designed for your Mac Pro, the Sapphire HD 7950 Mac Edition is an ideal upgrade to help you get the most of your machine. If you’re using the Mac Pro as your primary gaming rig, your frame rates will be increased by more than 200%, with general benchmark performance increased by around 30% and graphics-intensive benchmarks increased by as much as 300% compared with the NV 8800GT commonly used in these machines.
Also keep in mind that upgrading the video card will do more than help your graphics. Some programs, most notably the Adobe suite, are programmed to utilize the graphics card as additional CPU, helping with heavy mathematical calculations like Photoshop filters and effects by utilizing the cards stream processors. This means not only will you get more frames per second in your favorite game, you’ll also see snappier performance in pro level applications.
The HD 7950 Mac Edition comes equipped two mini DisplayPorts, and pushes out a maximum resolution of 3840 x 2160 on either monitor and also has an HDMI port and Dual-link DVI port.
The HD 7950 is compatible with 2009 and later aluminum tower Mac Pros with an available PCI-Express x16 slot. Two six-pin power cables required are supplied with the card. A driver disk is provided which enables the card to be used with Mac OS X 10.7.5 (Lion), 10.8.2 (Mountain Lion) or later.
OWC customer recommended
Here are some recent ratings from satisfied owners of the Sapphire HD 7950.
“My original OEM card died and I heard about this one from my father. All I can say [is] this card is awesome. It is so quiet compared to my old one. I cannot even hear the fans. Video speed and quality are excellent. I would recommend this card to anyone that needs to replace or wants a significant upgrade to their mac pro.” Rating: 5/5
“I installed this on a 2009 mac pro. I wanted to be able to run three monitors, thus the need for the card. I have two Apple 27 inch LED displays on my desktop and then I have a 52-inch big screen wall mounted and fed by an HDMI cable running thru the wall. On a normal day I stream video content to the wall-mounted big screen from the Internet, then I stream feeds from remote DVR’s on one of my desktop monitors and the last monitor is my workspace. Even with all that, I feel like I’m under utilizing the cards capabilities because I do no photo or video editing. I have been running the card for two months now and performance has been flawless.” Rating: 5/5
“Bought this card as a end-of-life kicker for my 2009 Mac Pro tower because I [do] a lot of video editing in FCPX and this card help A LOT!! With a 2GB SSD in RAID 0 as a system disk, my trusty old Mac feels like new.” Rating: 5/5
Use it with your Mac Pro or PC
The HD 7950 Mac Edition can also be used in the latest PC architectures. It has Dual Firmware support via a simple Firmware (Dual BIOS) switch. In one position the Sapphire HD 7950 Mac Edition supports Mac OS X/Windows under non-UEFI compliant mode and in the other it supports Windows with UEFI hybrid firmware enabled. A Windows driver disk is also included.
Trade in your original video card and save
From the purchase date of the Sapphire HD 7950 Mac Edition from OWC, you have 60 days to trade-in your previous video card that is in working order for a cash rebate! Just fill out OWC’s online rebate form or contact OWC Customer Service after you receive and install your new video card.