2017 15" MBP RP560 + GTX1080@32Gbps-TB3 (AORUS Gaming Box) macOS10.13.1 & Win10 [Max Pham]^ // CUDA-Z runs
2017 15″ MBP RP560 + Aorus Gaming Box GTX1080
AKiTiO Thunder2 + EVGA GTX 960 + Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter
Aorus Gaming Box + GTX1080
Win10: AKiTiO Thunder2 + EVGA GTX 960 + Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter & Aorus Gaming Box + GTX1080
I received my AORUS GTX 1080 Gaming Box (AGB) two days ago. After enjoying it for a while, I would like to share my initial experience.
macOS High Sierra 10.3.1
I am using a MacBook Pro 15″ 2017. In order to make the AGB work on macOS High Sierra 10.3.1, I must use yifanlu’s NVDIA eGPU support. Otherwise, GTX 1080 won’t be recognized.
- Plugging in the AGB before pressing Power button results in system freeze just after the appearance of the Apple’s logo. I must plug it in after the login screen appears, then everything would be fine.
- Testing with CUDA-Z produces different results at different login trials. One kind of result is H2D = 16XX, D2H = 26XX, and the power transferred from AGB = 60W. The other kind is H2D = 15XX, D2H = 17XX, and power = 100W (I use the 0.5m TB3 cable coming with the AGB). It does not seem to be an H2D issue.
- Unplugging the AGB at runtime crashes macOS.
- I have tried with all 4 TB3 ports. They gave the same results as described above with CUDA-Z.
- All USB posts on the AGB works correctly as described.
BootCamp Windows 10 Fall Creators Update version 1709
Next, I installed BootCamp on MacBook. This was the first time I did that because I just got the MacBook a month ago (I also own a MacBook Pro 13″ 2015 working with Akitio Thunder2 + EVGA GTX 960).
- Windows 10 Pro Fall Creators 64-bit, version 1709
- BootCamp support was installed successfully (First time, BootCamp support was failed to be installed completely, preventing Windows 10 from shutting down completely – the trackpad still vibrated when clicking after that. Then I needed to re-install it).
- Then I shut down Windows 10, plugged in the AGB. Surprisingly, after a flashing and one reboot at Windows logo, I could log in. The GTX 1080 was recognized as Microsoft Basic Display Adapter in Device Manager. I downloaded the latest NVidia driver, installed it, and reboot the system. Next time, Windows 10 successfully recognized the GTX 1080.
- I did not make any modification to the system as shown in this post.
- CUDA-Z always reveals the same result H2D = 22XX and D2H = 26XX.
- Both NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 and Radeon Pro 560 are shown in Device Manager.
- I have tried all 4 TB3 ports, I receive the same results as described above.
- All USB posts on the AGB works correctly as described.
AGB sometimes does not turn on automatically.
- If you want to boot to Windows 10, you must plug in the AGB when the MacBook is turned off. The LED should be turned on immediately after you press the power button. If you want to boot to macOS, you must plug in the AGB at login screen and the LED should also be turned on immediately. In those cases, if the LED does not show up, you need to unplug power cable from the AGB for at least 10 seconds, plug it in again, and optionally change the TB3 port.
- On Windows 10, after logging in, NVIDIA Geforce GTX 1080 in Device Manager may still show the error message “No drivers installed …”. Just need to wait a few seconds so that Windows completely reinstall the driver (especially when you change the TB3 port in the previous step).
Safety guidance for plugging and unplugging AGB
- Hot-unplugging the AGB at runtime after it is recognized on macOS does crash the system. Hot-plugging it at runtime, however, does not cause any crash, but it is unrecognized by macOS as GTX 1080,
- Hot-plugging the AGB at runtime on Windows does 10 does crash the system. Hot-unplugging it at runtime, however, does not cause any crash. However, the system won’t recognize it when you plug it in again.
- In order to safely unplug AGB on Windows, you must press the button “Disconnect GPU” on NVIDIA GPU Activity as shown in the image above. Then, you can unplug the TB3 cable from your MBP. Next time, if you want to connect the eGPU again, plug in the TB3 cable and press the button “Connect GPU”. At this point, AGB may not turn on automatically (LED does not show up). In this case, just do the steps in previous section.
I am currently working on VR/AR. Here are my experienct with SteamVR + HTC Vive attached to the AGB:
- SteamVR on macOS is unstable. Controllers are usually unable to be tracked, causing room-scale setup to fail.
- SteamVR on BootCamp works correctly as on my PC.
I have tried to attach both of my eGPUs to the MBP. They are connected to the ports located at different sides of the MacBook. If connected to the same side, the speed of the AORUS Gaming Box reported by System Information on macOS is reduced to 20 Gb/s.
- On macOS, they must be attached when the login screen appears. Although both eGPU enclosures are shown in Thunderbolt section of System Information, only the first-attached eGPU is recognized by nVidia driver and CUDA-Z.
- On Windows 10, both enclosures must be attached to the MBP when it is turned off. After logging in to Windows, they are recognized successfully after about 5 minutes (for downloading and installing drivers). H2D speed also reaches the maximum values for TB3 and TB2 enclosures.
Some final comments
I have another 2015 MacBook Pro 13″ running macOS-HS 10.3.1. After installing yifanlu’s NVIDIA eGPU support, I attach the AkitioThunder2 at login screen and it works exactly the same as on my MBP 15″. The AORUS Gaming Box, however, is not recognized by MBP 13″ through Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter.
I thought that I had to do a lot of things to make the AGB work on BootCamp but I didn’t need to do that. New firmware on mid-2017 MBP would be the reason. I haven’t had time to do further benchmarks but I am going to it soon
If you have any workaround to increase the H2D speed on macOS, please help me
Great write up! I have the same box and found the same results with you except that the USB ports on my AGB didn’t work simultaneously with a mouse and keyboard and in some cases my external hard drive locks up. I tested this with Macbook 2016 touchbar and Macbook 2017 touchbar. (Only windows)
I have 2 questions
1) does the aorus engine work for you?
2) did you do anything with firmware or anything to get the USB’s to function during windows operation?
Aorus graphics engine does not work for me. There is also no option for RGB customization.
I didn’t install anything to get the USB ports on AGB work. Those ports work simultaneously with a USB 3.1 gen 2 external hard drive, a USB 3.1 gen 1 external hard drive, and my iPad on both Windows and macOS. Of course, the transfer speed is limited to USB 3.1 gen 1 (5Gb/s).
I tried a similar system, 2017 15″ MBP RP455 + AGB-TB3 Win10 and although it has generally worked for my very limited usage so far, it has had two problems.
– Ran into error code 12 / device cannot find enough free resources.
– When it ran into the above error, I rebooted (may or may not have pre-pulled the TB3 cable) and windows permanently stopped working, e.g. right after reboot winlogo / half a circle of dots get a permanent black screen every time.
I’m suspecting the windows permanent black screen might indicate the igpu is disabled while simultaneously the egpu is ignored for some reason.
Other notable data – I had a keyboard, mouse, and monitor-hub plugged into the egpu’s usb.
I will be using this configuration more to see if it turns up. I also guess I need to read up on this error code 12 more too. I think there were no error code 12s when there were no additional usb devices connected.
I think that disabled iGPU seems not be the problem for my 2017″ MBP. On my Windows 10, only RP 560 shows up, intel HD630 disappears in Device Manager. You have RP455 so I guess your MBP is late-2016 instead of mid-2017. This post has reported that there was firmware update for 2017 MBP.
Apple has made some firmware improvements in the mid-2017 MacBook Pro. Windows 10 now shows “Large Memory” under Device Manager » View » Resources by connection. This means some Mid 2017 MacBook Pros may be able to use eGPU without encountering error 12, no workaround needed.
I am not sure if 2016 MBP receives the same firmware update. This might be a possible reason why your setup doesn’t work.
I think you could try some solutions:
- Install Windows 10 Fall Creators, version 1709 or above. I am not sure if newest version of Windows may help.
- Clean up everything that you have tried before (such as apple_set_os.efi)
- In addition, which GPU does your Aorus Gaming Box have. If it is GTX 1070 AGB, did you update its newest firmware?
- Reinstall BootCamp support with newest version.
I have followed your guide! Many thanks.
Have exactly the same hardware, and Windows shows both Radeon and GTX1080. BUT whenever i launch the game, it choses Radeon instead of GeForce.
How do you switch between dGPU and eGPU?
You need to use an external monitor in order to game with the GTX 1080 eGPU. Internal display acceleration with eGPU requires an active and functional Intel integrated GPU.
Because it is disabled by default. Take a look in the egpu windows bootcamp guide