GeekBench 5 crashes AMD Radeon VII on Mac Pro

Pedro Conforti's Avatar

Pedro Conforti

01 Dec, 2019 10:30 PM

Hi everyone, maybe someone could shed a light on this.

I just bought this Radeon VII card on eBay and installed it on my Mac Pro 5,1 running Mojave (10.14.6). But the card performance hasn't impressed me so far (I bought it to replace a Maxwell nVIDIA Titan X) on my main work software (BlackMagic Design DaVinci Resolve and I wanted to know it everything was running as expected or if there is some bottleneck I could not find, maybe drivers problems or something else. Thats why I downloaded GeekBench 5, which I have never used before.

So after testing the CPU i've tried to run the GPU compute tests on both Metal and OpenCL, but they always crash the GPU. Even if they run for a about 20 seconds, they both cause the card to simply shut off. The Mac Pro cover was open so I could see that the card lights just turned off and it seemed dead. Had to do a hard shutdown (take out the Mac AC cable) to be able to turn it back on.

Is it possible that my card has a failure? What can I do to be sure it is fine? And why does GeekBench cause these crashes?



  1. 1 Posted by Colin on 02 Dec, 2019 06:59 PM

    Colin's Avatar


    Thanks for reaching out to us about this, and I'm sorry for any trouble caused by this issue. This is quite unusual, and I'd like to ask a few questions to narrow down what may have caused this.

    Could you let me know which version of Geekbench 5 you were using (e.g. 5.0.3 or 5.0.4), as well as if you are using the Radeon VII drivers that come with macOS updates or the ones that are available through AMD's website? If your system is using a graphics driver from AMD's website, could you let me know which driver version it is?

    If Geekbench crashed due to an error, it may have created an error log in the ~/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports folder. Could you send me any files in that folder that contain "geekbench" in their filename?

    Lastly, we have run into a similar issue with a system in our lab which was mis-configured, where the system's power supply was not quite strong enough to keep up with the maximum power consumption of the GPU. For this kind of issue, I would recommend double-checking that the system's power supply is appropriate for the hardware that your system is running.

    All the best,

    Primate Labs Inc.

  2. 2 Posted by Wade on 13 May, 2020 04:47 AM

    Wade 's Avatar

    I have a similar issue. Where the Radeon vii performs well on Mac OS. But I don't game on Mac OS either. It just plays videos everything like lightning fast.. on windows though. My gpu in a game I'll state this now.. even with an external 500 watt power source that's capable of putting out at least 400 all the time. Still isn't impressing me at all... But an Nvidia GTX 1060 on windows which I can't run on Mac OS unfortunately... Puts out over 100 frames all day long..... Radeon vii using only 50-90% GPU putting out 39-90 with high response time.... So it's really not impressing me.. yet it scores over 225,000 on geekbench 4 I believe ... So I'm guessing it's some serious driver issues and I've tried the two latest plus 2 in December and destiny 2s performance is awful.

  3. 3 Posted by mel on 14 May, 2020 11:18 PM

    mel's Avatar

    The stock power supply on the 5,1 does not supply enough power to the mini-6pin power ports on the motherboard to power the Radeon VII. You either need to downvolt the card (Google "downvolt radeon vii Mac" for the MacRumors thread), use an external PSU, or modify your PSU using the Pixlas Mod.

    I ended up using the Pixlas Mod, which is a lot easier than it looks, as long as you use Posi-Taps instead of the quick-splice taps shown in the House of Moth instructions. to me it was worth it just to avoid the hassle of having to go through the undervolting procedure, and certainly much more elegant than using an external PSU.

  4. 4 Posted by Wade on 14 May, 2020 11:24 PM

    Wade's Avatar

    I'm using a pixla's mod I even have an external GPU as well... I stated that also . I'm not using the pcie connectors on the motherboard.

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