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Mac Pro 12-core and Radeon 5870 - Display goes all static at random times

33785 Views 116 Replies Latest reply: Dec 4, 2012 12:52 AM by RandG_GER RSS
  • Jason Goldsmith Calculating status...
    I have a 3.33 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon with a ATI Radeon HD 5870 and three ASUS VW266H monitors, each 1920 x 1200. Two of the monitors connect via mini-displayport to dual-link DVI adaptors, and the third directly via DVI.

    I experience the very annoying static problem almost every time I wake up my Mac from sleep or display sleep. One, two, or all three monitors show full screen static at each such wake-up. I called Apple Support and went through a long process of analysis that resulted in the recommendation that I purchase Apple monitors! I tried putting the computer to sleep (using a hot corner) but this was very annoying (because of the delay involved and because it didn't always work). Then I stumbled on a simple, fast, and workable solution:

    When the static appears (a full screen of grey and colored pixels in brownian motion), I use the power button on my monitors to turn the power off and then immediately on, and then the monitor(s) are back in action. Takes about 2 seconds per monitor and works every time.

    3.33 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon, Mac OS X (10.6.6), SSD, 13 GB 1333 MHz DDR3, ATI Radeon HD 5870
  • Spacecadetcraig Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    I'm still dealing with all these issues stated before me i.e blue/red horizontal line in darks as well as white screen static noise (5870) (past 6 months). I have had a senior Apple Care dude walking me through various steps to isolate problems for them. It's far-and-away a graphics card issue. AS many man people have simply put the old 4870 in their new mac pros and seen the problem alleviated.

    I had a replacement graphics card sent to me that had a "rev b" sticker on it and it still behaved the exact same way as the original. Apple wants to send a new mac pro to me - but I'm reluctant to try it unless there is anything significantly different about it. Spending even more time setting up another system only to have the same issue caused by a really ****** graphics card / driver will be a complete waste of my time.

    Has anyone had ANY success with these issues at all? Or all we all just working on our uber high-end workstations with this embarrassing display issue?

    I have to say, I'm at the end of my rope with this. I will be calling / emailing AppleCare every day until it's resolved.

    If anyone has new info pls post!

    Message was edited by: Spacecadetcraig
    2010 12 Core MacPro 2.93Ghz. 32 GB RAM - ATi 5870 (PoS) 1x SSD 240GB : 3x WD 2TB 30"+ 24" Dell, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • NullUnit Level 1 Level 1 (110 points)
    I had the same static issues with a MP and 5870. It's a bad cable. At least it was here.

    I had a 6' DVI cable to Dual-Link DVi->MiniDisplay adapter in place. I replaced the 6; DVI cable with a better quality cable and the static hasn't appeared since.
    2010 8-Core MacPro - 3 Displays -- 2008 MacBookPro, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • Spacecadetcraig Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    I thought about that before and purchased new Dual Link DVI cables.. same issues persist. Heck - Dell even offered to replace my 30" Ultra sharp because I thought it had to be the display after Apple gave me a replacement 5870. Nope. Even with a new display.. similar issues.

    I've done so much research on this issue and have provided Apple Engineers with a crazy amount of references for people having this issue on 30" displays.

    I've finally had enough - Apple is replacing my entire machine. This may sound great but it's the last thing i wanted since it will take up my time rebuilding my new machine with my custom components etc but Apple is insisting since they want my current machine to poke and prod with. I'll update with more details when I get the new MacPro
    2010 12 Core MacPro 2.93Ghz. 32 GB RAM - ATi 5870 (PoS) 1x SSD 240GB : 3x WD 2TB, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • NullUnit Level 1 Level 1 (110 points)
    Good luck.. I've had 3 new MacPros after a single October 2010 purchase. All three have shown the exact same video issue until I replaced the DVI cable. I really don't think it's the adapter, the MacPro, the video card, or the monitor. It's the cable between everything.

    BTW my 3 MPs were due to A) Random freeze at high load B) Sudden short not related to power supply or logic board (those were replaced and the machine still had a short) and C) using the 3rd system since January. So far so good after replacing the DVI cable.
    2010 8-Core MacPro - 3 Displays -- 2008 MacBookPro, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • Spacecadetcraig Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    I wish that were the case here. I actually bought 2 different new DVI cables to test with.. that makes 3 cables total - still the same problem. And to top it off.. my 24" monitors are fine with these cables.. never any problems.. only 30" displays.. of all brand types.
    2010 12 Core MacPro 2.93Ghz. 32 GB RAM - ATi 5870 (PoS) 1x SSD 240GB : 3x WD 2TB, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • Spacecadetcraig Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    There really are 2 issues here though:

    a) White noise issue: likely caused by said bad driver. This is something that can be reset very easily by power cycling or even sleep/waking the display. Software related.

    b) blue / red lines in display: this is almost definitely a hardware issues of some kind. This is confirmed by apple as they did a stress test on my machine and the results say software was in the clear. Their best guess is there is a voltage issues with these cards at high resolutions. I have to agree with them. Sleep / wake nor power cycling monitor helps the situation.

    if Apple realizes "a" and still decliens to do anything about it - what a shame. Their product is defective - no matter what percentage of users are experiencing it.

    in the case of "b" - there have been reports of these cards having these issues back in 2009 on PC's and 30" dispalys (do some clever youtube / google searching and you will find that they are exactly the issue some of us are having -- this is not a driver issue). Plus - i get this voltage distortion when i'm in windows xp and 7. the same issues both in win and os x.

    If there truly is a voltage issue in these family of cards I can see these things happening:

    1: Apple gets their vendor to re-manufacture the cards for ALL mac pros (highly unlikely)
    2. Class action suit against apple for not fixing this issue
    3. Apple keeps replacing Mac pros for people who notice the issue and offer alternative replacement cards (quadra 4000 or nvidia equiv. - prev gen ofc) <- this is what apple offered me and I refuse to use either of those cards since they are a big hit to performance of my workflow.

    Ont he bright side - I'm working with 2 wonderful senior techs ont his issue. They are feverishly collecting data about the issue. However - I don't think they have a solution even if they do identify / verify the problem.

    On the dark side, I've spent weeks of my time collectively on this issue and it pains me to have to work through something like this on a high end workstation. Shame shame Apple.

    ps. one of my hunches is taht Apple never tested this family of cards on 30" displays since they don't sell them anymore (i.e. 27" LED). Even tho the descriptions say the cards work on 30" resolution. My hunch anyway.

    Message was edited by: Spacecadetcraig

    Message was edited by: Spacecadetcraig
    2010 12 Core MacPro 2.93Ghz. 32 GB RAM - ATi 5870 (PoS) 1x SSD 240GB : 3x WD 2TB, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • ryan42 Calculating status...
    It's comforting to see others have this issue. I have been fighting flashing red and blue lines on my 30" with my 2008 Mac Pro (unsupported, I know) and my 5870 since I purchased it around December. Apple replaced the card but the new one behaves the same way. I have also seen PC users with 5870s report the problem on 30" displays. Hopefully some resolution comes out of this issue as I really hate this problem.
    Mac Pro - Early 2008 (8-core 2.8 GHz), Mac OS X (10.6), Macintosh User Since System 7
  • Del Lacount Calculating status...

    Same problem here with grayscreen/colored colored noise after waking up and occasionally at startup. 


    12 core 2.66 and 5870


    NEC 24" monitor

  • julianfromberlin Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi folks,


    got the same problem (grey pixels) with Mac Pro 2010 6core, 5770, two 24" HP lp2475w connected via two active minidisplayport to dvi dual link (99euros). I called Apple the fourth time, now they sent me timingsnoop x und capture data to log it on a clean system via external harddrive. lets see what they can do for me.

    the last post here is old, whats your status with this issue?

    best regards from germany

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