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

33788 Views 116 Replies Latest reply: Dec 4, 2012 12:52 AM by RandG_GER RSS
  • The hatter Level 9 Level 9 (58,595 points)
  • RandG_GER Calculating status...

    Thanks for the suggestions and information.

    So here is the latest on my HD 5870 card...

    After talking with Apple Europe 3x times, I was told to take the MacPro to my authorized Apple dealer. Their technician spent three days with Hardware tests - using my 30" Apple Cinema Display. He found nothing. Since I had videos showing the problem, Apple suggested a clean install through the recovery mode. I formatted the drive as suggested (I spent six hours later getting all my software and settings back) and after the Apple software installation - same problem as ever. The problems started BEFORE I had installed any non-Apple software.

    I no longer trust the Apple Hardware test - and although the Apple Europe folks as well as my dealer's technician and salespeople are friendly and appear competent (they do seem surprised that this problem exists!) I don't want a replacement HD 5870 card anymore. We will see how Apple deals with my problem now  - I have suggested an upgrade to a NVIDIA Quadro 4000 card - and I will pay the difference. This is really so "unApple" for me. I never had ANY problems with Hardware before.....


  • The hatter Level 9 Level 9 (58,595 points)

    Our AHT is never able to determine a graphic card problem. Don't know about the Apple Service Diagnostic which goes further.

     

    MacVidCards can set you up with GTX 570 w/ 2.5GB VRAM as long as you are running Lion now.

  • RandG_GER Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    So - here is the latest news from (sad - no appearance at the European Cup Finals) Germany:

     

    My dealer replaced - after weeks of discussion with Apple Europe - both the HD 5870 card and the electrical current transformer in my MacPro. Neither of these actions helped the problem. A "Part 2" "CPU Manager" sitting in Ireland suggested trying using a Mini-Display-Port to Dual-Link DVI-Adapter instead of connecting the 30" directly to the DVI-connection. After rereading this thread I realized: that is not going to help. So: I have given up and have connected a 24" Monitor and everything is working great. I have a 27" Apple LED as my main monitor and I wanted to use the 30" as a second anyway. BUT: this is really not good news for Apple users. The company has simply gotten too big to care about these kind of problems - and the problem is definately a software driver problem, that Apple COULD solve. But I guess the folks in Cupertino are so much into lifestyle product development that they do not have time for business users.... I did tell EVERYONE I talked to at Apple that they should get on this problem! I mean - just read the thread!

    By the way, five days ago the display on my brand new MacBook Pro went defect - it has been replaced (warranty) but: what is going on at Apple? Like I earlier wrote - I never had problems with Apple hardware!!!

  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (48,145 points)

    Our AHT is never able to determine a graphic card problem

    I think it may do a gross test of the display RAM, so that a failure of the display RAM would be seen. But it does not seem to test the advanced functions in the slightest.

    Mac Pro (Early 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.8), & Server, PPC, & AppleTalk Printers
  • govcom Calculating status...

    About once-a-week since new, I had experienced intermittent graphics failures that made my MAC screen go to snow.  I removed a piece of plastic embedded in the graphics card socket, which was probably on the board when it shipped to the assembler.  That improved things, but I still experienced some problems where my MAC would not gracefully wake from sleep or auto-sense multiple monitors.  My system suddenly started crashing on boot shortly after the screen powers-up with a kernel panic and system log references to the pci bus and graphics card specifically. 

     

    I went through the usual drill and took the MAC apart and vacuumed it out (not much dust actually) and pulled out the video card to inspect the terminals.  Naturally there was nothing obvious (having already remedied that earlier), so I went looking deeper.   The video card (ATI Radeon HD 5870) is in it's own substantial enclosure (full width and two slots deep) with it's own cooling system, so I decided to take it apart.  I got down to the logic board after removing the case around it, I noticed a several prominent white smudges on the board that (at first) I thought might be corrosion but I am now convinced are fingerprints of silver oxide paste (used liberally to bond the onboard graphics processor to its heat-sinc).  I've used the stuff, and it comes with all kinds of warnings that it's conductive and will do horrible things to printed circuits if not carefully contained.  I scrubbed the board with alcohol, reassembled and it's working way better than new (at least for now).   

     

    There's a bunch of threads on the Apple support forums regarding similar failures of this particular card in this particular model and year.  Looking at various user comments on generic PC reseller websites still offering this card for sale, there are user comments where a statistically significant number came DOA (or were soon RMA'd) indicating a possible quality control problem with assembly and inspection.

  • julianfromberlin Calculating status...

    Hello Folks,

     

    today i tried to talk to apple again. macpro 6core, 5770, 2 24" HP Displays.

    I got the white snow/pixels after wake up or booting.

    they told me, that they wont fix the problem for 10.6.8. because they do not support it(snow leopard) anymore. a year ago we did the whole timingsnopX, EDC and capture data stuff...

    do you have the same problem with 10.7.? what can i do to get a working machine from apple? replace the whole mac pro? do i got any guarantee in this case? my german contact at apple is not very handsome...she refused to send a replacement card...

     

    i´m so disappointed...

     

    regards,

    julian

  • RandG_GER Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I had the problem for a long time - after several repairs/card exchange (see previous posts) - I replaced my Apple 30" Cinema with a 27" no-name monitor (I am using this monitor as a second/additional screen together with a 27" LED CinemaDisplay). After that things have been OK - I have thought about trying out the 30" again just to see if some system update - I am running 10.7.5 - might have included better drivers. I am afraid that Apple really isn't that interested in "working" users anymore - they make so much money with lifestyle products...

  • julianfromberlin Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Steve, Hi RandG,

     

    thank you for the fast answer.

    1) Which cards do you recommend? And shouldn´t Apple pay for this card?! :-)

    2) Sure they could...

     

    What about the other people with the same problems? Any solutions from Apple?

     

    Regards,

    Julian

  • RandG_GER Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Julian,

     

    in my case, I had AppleCare - my supplier replaced the original ATI Radeon HD 5870 card and also the electrical supply transformer - at no charge (but after lots of discussions and calls to Apple). I now have an AT Radeon HD 5870 - ROM-Version: 113-C0780C-194, EFI-Treiberversion: 01.00.436.

     

    As I wrote, no problems for a long while...

     

    Regards,

     

    RandG

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