2014 15" MacBook Pro (GT750M) [4th,4C,H] + GTX 980 Ti @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (AKiTiO N...
 
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2014 15" MacBook Pro (GT750M) [4th,4C,H] + GTX 980 Ti @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + macOS 10.12 [mac_editor]  

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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
Famed Member Moderator
Joined: 3 years ago
 

If you are one of those risk-adverse MacBook Pro (Mid-2014) w/ NVIDIA 750M users such as myself, you probably already know that setting up an eGPU with this machine can be problematic. More specifically, we do not have many clear and concrete examples of the notebook being setup with the new Akitio Node. I will aim to be as extensive as possible. Perhaps this guide may be helpful to other dGPU MBP users as well.

 


Equipment

 

You require the following components for this build:

  • Thunderbolt 3 enclosure
  • NVIDIA GTX 980 Ti
  • Thunderbolt 3 > Thunderbolt 2 Adapter
  • Thunderbolt 2 Cable
  • External Display

 


macOS Setup

 

For macOS High Sierra 10.13 - 10.13.3, you require:

  • NVIDIA web-driver supported build of High Sierra
  • NVIDIA Web Drivers
  • NVDAEGPUSupport Installer

 

For 10.13.4-10.13.6:

 

Follow the instructions for High Sierra as linked above and you should have a working configuration.

 

For macOS 10.12.6 (older not recommended), you require:

 

Note that the script handles installation of web drivers automatically. Please follow these steps:

 

Step 1

Disable System Integrity Protection (SIP) by booting into Recovery (⌘ + R on boot) and run the following commands in Terminal:

$ csrutil disable
$ reboot

 

You should be back into macOS without incident.

 

Step 2

  • Connect an external display to the eGPU
  • Plug in your eGPU through the thunderbolt interface

 

Step 3

Run the script in Terminal:

$ cd /path/to/script/
$ sudo ./automate-eGPU.sh
$ sudo ./automate-eGPU.sh -a
$ sudo reboot

 

Your external display should light up with graphics acceleration on reboot.

 

 


Booting macOS

 

The MacBook Pro 11,3 EFI interferes when cold-booting and results in a power-on-self-test failure - preventing boot (lit black screen, no chime, etc. are symptoms). To circumvent this, the script in the setup process makes use of the -a flag. This may allow you to boot successfully. I have personally had mixed results. Alternatively, to ensure that boot is successful, you can follow these steps (after reading ALL):

  • Made sure your eGPU enclosure is powered up and ready to go.
  • Connect the eGPU to your external display via HDMI or DisplayPort.
  • Power on the Mac.
  • You will hear the boot chime and see the Apple logo.

 

Next, follow the steps based of your configuration:

 

Systems W/O FileVault

  • Before the loading bar appears, plug in the TB cable coming from your enclosure into your Mac.
  • The loading bar will slow down and stop around the halfway point.
  • Boot may be slower than normal.

 

Systems With FileVault

  • The initial login screen will appear where you will be prompted to enter your password.
  • Put in your password, but do not press return or proceed further.
  • Be ready to plug in the TB cable from your enclosure, and do so after pressing return and before the loading bar appears below your account as the OS completes the boot.
  • The loading bar will slow down and stop around the halfway point.
  • Boot may be slower than normal.

 

You will need to repeat this process per boot.


Issues on macOS Sierra

 

# Log Outs Not Supported

Logging out will crash your Mac. Restarts or shutdowns are the only option to switch users.

 

# Slow macOS UI Performance

Use of the eGPU-connected external display alongside the internal display may result in glitchy/slow UI performance.

Workaround: Disable Displays have separate spaces in Mission Control settings or disable the internal display entirely.

 

# macOS Updates

For any macOS system updates, script changes may be undone.

Workaround: Redo the setup process.

  


macOS Benchmarks

 

The configuration employs an HP 24ea 1080P display on the 750M versus the e980 Ti

750M:

  • Unigine Heaven: 8.8 FPS with a score of 221.
  • BruceX Final Cut Pro - Uncompressed ProRes Export: ~90s, H.264 Export: ~210s.

 

GTX 980 Ti eGPU:

  • Unigine Heaven: 64.2 FPS with a score of 1617.
  • BruceX Final Cut Pro - Uncompressed ProRes Export: ~56s, H.264 Export: ~120s.

 

Graphics rendering improvements on eGPU over dGPU: 8 x

FCP Export improvements over on eGPU over dGPU1.6 x

 


Windows Setup - Not Possible

 

Is currently not possible using the Akitio Node on this MBP because Windows fails to detects the Node with an NVIDIA 9xx series chip. If you require Windows and want to use an NVIDIA 9xx card, setups using the Akitio Thunder2 would be more suitable for this Mac.

An easy working setup with an AMD GPU is possible, however. See here.

purge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


Georgios Lachanas, hypernurd, nando4 and 1 people liked
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432koi
(@432koi)
Active Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I think I may be running into the same problem as you, but I have a mid-2014 15' MacBook pro GT750M with a Razer Core, rather than an akitio node, and a gtx 1080. I can not seem to get it to recognize on windows 8.1. And when I boot into windows with the internal intel gpu with the external GPU connected it just gets stuck on a black screen.

When I tried with a 2014 13' MacBook pro, it worked flawlessly, the only differences I can think of is that it does not have the dedicated GPU and is running windows 10

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

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ed_co
(@ed_co)
Reputable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

So is this because the 750m card?

There are examples of other MacBook Pro non-tb3 which works like a charm in windows with the node...

https://egpu.io/forums/builds/2015-macbook-pro-retina-15-tb2-apple-adapter-akitio-node-gtx-1060-win10-success/

Are you following these guides?

2017 15" MacBook Pro (RP560) [7th,4C,H] + GTX 1080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.13 & Win10 [build link]  

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goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

Not only the 750M card - the difference is also the older TB2 controller and Mac firmware. I happen to own the Mid-2015 15" MBP (M370X) and it's very easy to get working on macOS and Windows. It also supports hot-plugging on Windows (AMD XConnect).

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
Famed Member Moderator
Joined: 3 years ago
 
Posted by: ed_co

 

So is this because the 750m card?

There are examples of other MacBook Pro non-tb3 which works like a charm in windows with the node...

https://egpu.io/forums/builds/2015-macbook-pro-retina-15-tb2-apple-adapter-akitio-node-gtx-1060-win10-success/

Are you following these guides?

   

I have looked at the guides. The issue is that my Mac does not support hot-plugging of devices such as the Node (on Windows). So I am stuck at the detection phase rather than the GPU configuration phase. I would celebrate if I got an error 12 on Windows ;p.

purge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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Gotsche
(@gotsche)
Active Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I got the akitio node (with MSI GTX 1080) now and I'm getting also Problems while the detection phase / GPU configuration Phase with my iMac (late 2013, i7, 780M)....

Will Microsoft fix this Problem?

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

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markbam
(@markbam)
Active Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I'm experiencing the same lack of detection in Windows with my 2014 rMBP, 750m, akitio node, and an EVGA Geforce GTX 1060 w/ 6GB.

My dusty old Geforce 480 is detected just fine.

Mid-2017 MacBook Pro 15 inch Touchbar (Radeon Pro 560)
- Akitio Node (Radeon 580)
- Aorus Gaming Box (Geforce GTX 1080)


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
Famed Member Moderator
Joined: 3 years ago
 

For anyone with the same configuration as above (including the enclosure) - you could try this setup with a GTX 10xx series card and the newly released BETA Pascal drivers for Mac. Do post an update if you could get it working!

purge-wranglertbt-flashpurge-nvdaset-eGPU
Insights Into macOS Video Editing Performance

Master Threads:
2014 15-inch MacBook Pro 750M
2018 15-inch MacBook Pro

 
2019 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [build link]  


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markbam
(@markbam)
Active Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

My 1060 is running great on MacOS with the new Pascal driver. Windows is still a no-go.

Mid-2017 MacBook Pro 15 inch Touchbar (Radeon Pro 560)
- Akitio Node (Radeon 580)
- Aorus Gaming Box (Geforce GTX 1080)


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Lkt
 Lkt
(@lkt)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I have my 1060 running nicely in macOS now. I also got Windows running (Thunder2 though), but the boot process was so unstable that I eventually nuked the Bootcamp partition, it wasn't worth the effort repairing Windows everytime something broke.

The hang at POST issue is extremely annoying though.

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

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