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Mac OS X 10.6.7 code shows support for generic video cards

updated 09:45 am EDT, Thu March 24, 2011

Might open up upgrades for hackers

The 2011 MacBook Pro version of the Mac OS X 10.6.7 update appears to contain support for AMD/ATI video cards not normally available for Macs, a hacker notes. Supported 5000-series Radeon HD cards include the 5630, 5670, 5730, 5770, 5850 and 5870. For the more recent 6000 series the 6850, 6870 and 6970 are listed.

While some of the cards may be options for upcoming Macs, it's suspected that Apple may be interested in supporting a wider range of off-the-shelf cards. Even Mac Pros are limited to a small set of upgrades specifically identified as Mac-compatible, whereas Windows PCs can be upgraded with virtually any card on the market. Most Macs are not designed to use any graphics hardware but what Apple itself has selected at the time of a refresh.


By Electronista Staff


  1. sixcolors

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2001


    Would be nice

    But after many years of being a Mac Pro/PowerMac user I'll believe it when I see it.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. driven

    Addicted to MacNN

    Joined: May 2001


    Generic OS?

    Are we perhaps talking about a generic Mac OS X release?

  1. panjandrum

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Dec 2004


    Options at last?

    Let's hope that Apple's finally figured out that MacPro owners need a much wider range of graphics card support. I've got a flashed PC card in mine that works well, but the entire process (and finding a card which works properly when flashed) is not simple. I'll only believe it when I see it though... (And let's see if Apple tells people this only works in newer MacPros, just like those Apple cards that supposedly don't work and yet amazingly work just fine. It's so sad to see Apple grubbing for money this way...)

  1. Nate83

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2010



    The lack of video card choices is probably my biggest gripe about my Mac Pro. It's insane that I have to pay twice as much for a card that is months behind the latest pc card. I know Apple likes to keep a stranglehold on everything, but give us a break on video cards at least.

  1. that one guy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005


    Drivers are good, but...

    The problem is that most video cards need special firmware to deal with the Apple implementation of EFI. So unless you can flash a PC video card with a Macintosh firmware, it does not really help much. (IIRC, most Nvidia cards are not flashable, some specific ATI cards are flashable)

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