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Gainward 7800 GS Bliss 512 in a MDD!

As you may already know, the Gainward Bliss 7800 GS 512mb AGP graphics card (to give it it's full name) is a dual slot card and therefore there is no way it will fit in a Mirror Drive Door G4 without some serious modification due to the unusual layout of the Logic board. You may also ask, why would you want to achieve this anyway?

Well, unlike any other 7800 GS, the Gainward version uses the 20 pipeline 7800 GT chip & 512 mb of DDR 1.4ns ram. This makes it faster than any other 7800 GS which only have 16 pipes & 256 mb ram.

Also this is about the only AGP Dual DVI card around, so it will drive 2 x Apple monitors. A 30" & a 23"! Believe me I've tried it.

Having said all that, the card costs a not insubstantial amount at around 280 by the time you have added carriage VAT & all the other blood sucking taxes that go on top.

I have been looking for what seems like an age for a single slot cooler that will fit the Gainward, to allow fitment into an MDD. As the Gainward has all 8 ram chips attached to the front face of the card and a AGP/PCIE bridge chip that needs cooling (normal 7800 GT coolers will not fit) the card calls out for a special cooler. I was thinking about fabricating something myself, but this would be a bit tricky. My interest was aroused when a friend told me he had bought a Gainward 6800 GS 512 card which only filled a single slot.

I had seen a few crappy little pictures on the internet of these cards and had a feeling that the cooler might just fit. Well, it seems I was right!

The other problem you are faced with is the double IO plate that needs to be made into a single to fit a MDD. Well some very carefull hacksawing later and I do mean carefull, I had a single slot card. I couldn't just swap over the IO plate as the 6800 is DVI/VGA.

The cooler lines up perfectly and my mate can keep the 2 slot cooler for his PCIE 6800 GS in his PC!

This card also requires a 128kb flash rom chip to be fitted.

Along with the other mods I've made to my FW800 over a period of time this computer now really is flying! I kid you not when I say this feels as fast as my dual 2 GIG G5 in & around the desktop

Watercooled Dual 1.5Gig Processors

2 x 10,000 RPM, Raptor 150 16 meg cache set up as a Striped bootable Raid

2 GIGS of Memory

See below for pictures:

top

Here is the 6800 PCIE PC card with the fan assembly that will be used.

Below, it has been fitted onto the 7800 GS AGP.

With7800GS256

The Gainward (above) shown next to a 7800 GS 256 AGP DVI/VGA card.

DShot

The Gainward with 6800 GS 512 cooler fitted & IO panel reduced to fit a single slot

FrontShot

Front view showing dual DVI output

WiththeDoner6800GS512

7800 GS (above) next to the PCIE 6800 GS (below) which now has the original dual slot cooler fitted.

TopShotGainward512

A top shot of the card - finished

BottomShot

The black back cover on the lower (std) card hides 4 of the 8 memory chips. On the Gainward they are all on the front.

Installed2

Fitted into the MDD Logic board

Installed3

And again from a different angle.

Installed4

And again!

IOPanelDualDVI

Dual DVI!

GainwardSysProfiler
AboutthisMac

Still need to get all 512 of memory seen! Speed is set 460/1400. Temp is 54 Degrees at idle & around 65 after a Doom 3 session

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28/08/10

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