Mac Pro 2008: dead ATI 200 XT GPU replaced with not so dead Nvidia 120 GT

The ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT that came standard in the 2008 Mac Pro was a good looking card. I mean, chrome flames?! But unfortunately in this case, mine died:

I primarily used this card only to access the Mac boot screen to switch between MacOS and Windows 10, as my other card, an Nvidia 750ti doesn’t support the boot screen. Once the ATI card died, I was stuck in Windows 10 and couldn’t boot back into MacOS.

Not really needing an upgrade, just a replacement that supports the boot screen, I picked up a cheap Nvidia 120 GT on ebay for $30. Nowhere near as flashy looking as the ATI:

Got the card installed, and it works great:

Turns out the fan on that ATI card was also the noisiest fan in my Mac Pro. Now with the new Nvidia card, my Mac Pro is barely audible. I have 2 SSDs and one 2.5″ HDD, so other than the system fans, I guess with low usage it really shouldn’t be spinning up the fans that loud anyway. Turns out this new card is significantly quieter. Bonus!

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