2015 15" MacBook Pro (R9 M370X) [4th,4C,H] + RX 5600 XT @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer ...
 
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2015 15" MacBook Pro (R9 M370X) [4th,4C,H] + RX 5600 XT @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer Core X) + macOS 10.15.5 & Win10  

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Anton Puzorjov
(@anton_puzorjov)
New Member
Joined: 1 week ago
 

System specs

15" MacBook Pro Retina (Mid2015):
-2.5 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7 (I7-4870HQ)
-16 GB (1600 MHz DDR3)
-Radeon R9 M370X 2 GB

External monitor: Dell U2518D (2560 x 1440 at 60 Hz)

OSX: Catalina 10.15.5
Bootcamp: Windows 10 Pro build 18362.295 19H1 1903

 

eGPU hardware

Razer Core X + Gigabyte Radeon RX 5600 XT Gaming OC 6GB GDDR6 (old vBIOS, 12 gbs)
(Apple) Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter
(Apple) Thunderbolt 2 Cable (2m)
Headerless Ghost

 

Installation Steps

In general, I followed this guide from a similar MBP model (massive thanks to @marco_cirillo for sharing!) but there is a more detailed process I followed below.

OSX

  1. Make sure eGPU is NOT plugged.
  2. Install purge-wrangler following this guide.
  3. Run purge-wrangler
    1. If I connected the eGPU at the first step I would end up with a reboot loop (see #44 on GitHub)
    2. Therefore, skip eGPU detection (press ESC) and follow the installation
    3. Ti82 support: no
    4. eGPU Vendor: AMD
    5. Legacy drivers: yes
  4. Reboot and plug in eGPU (both TB2 ports on MBP work) either at the OS picker stage (press option key when mac starts booting) or just hot plug after logging in macOS

Windows

  1. (I assume you start with a fresh Win10 install and have already installed all Boot camp drivers installed by Boot Camp Assistant automatically).
  2. Download latest DDU.
  3. Reboot into safe mode.
  4. Run DDU (remove GPU drivers for AMD, Intel and Nvidia without restart). Then restart into normal Win10.
  5. Start the computer, hold option so you see the OS picker (Windows and OSX).
  6. Plug in the eGPU (both TB2 ports on MBP work)  (at this point the graphics card fans started to spin, then quickly stopped, and the LED indicator on the card turned on). I waited for 5-10s to make sure the GPU started.
  7. Boot into Win10.
  8. Open Device Manager, verify your graphics adapter shows up as Microsoft Basic Display Adapter (same title for both eGPU and dGPU).
  9. Install the latest Bootcamp drivers (Adrenalin April 2020 Red Gaming edition. The actual driver inside is 20.4.2.
  10. Restart Win10.
  11. Open Device Manager, expect both dGPU and eGPU identified properly, but eGPU will have Code 12.
  12. Install eGPU-Toggler
    1. This step is device-specific. Follow the readme to figure out how to find your Hardware ID. 
    2. Open egpu-toggler.bat with Notepad.
    3. For my particular setup, I had to replace 2 instances of "PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_66AF&SUBSYS_081E1002" with "PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_731F&SUBSYS_231C1458"
    4. I have also added a 5s delay to make sure the script waits before re-checking the status of Code 12 (otherwise the script only runs one round of enable/disable). To do this, add "timeout /t 2" just before "REM timeout /t 1 >nul"
    5. Run the script and after few round of enable/disable expect your external monitor to run on (Code 12 issue resolved). The script will stop automatically. If for some reason the Code 12 is still there after 10+ rounds of enable/disable, restart Win10 without unplugging eGPU and try again. For me, it takes 3-4 rounds of enable/disable and Code 12 disappears.  

 

Benchmarks

Link to my Geekbench profile (all results). All tests performed with the external monitor connected.

MacOS

Geeekbench 5:

  1. dGPU (R9 M370X) OpenCL: 10509
  2. eGPU (RX 5600 XT) Metal: 29198
  3. eGPU (RX 5600 XT) OpenCL: 37008
  4. eGPU (RX 5600 XT + HDMI Dummy) Metal: 52020
  5. eGPU (RX 5600 XT + HDMI Dummy) OpenCL: 47502

PS I also tested with two HDMI and DP Dummies connected: there was no performance boost. One Dummy is enough.

Unigine Heaven 4.0 (extreme preset):

  1. dGPU (R9 M370X) FPS: 11.7, Score: 295,  Min FPS: 5.0, Max FPS: 26.4
  2. eGPU (RX 5600 XT) FPS: 60.3, Score: 1520,  Min FPS: 9.3, Max FPS: 122.5

PS HDMI Dummy did not provide any boost in performance in this test.

Windows

Geeekbench 5:

  1. eGPU (RX 5600 XT) OpenCL: 51672

Unigine Heaven 4.0 (extreme preset):

  1. eGPU (RX 5600 XT) FPS: 76.5, Score: 1926,  Min FPS: 8.9, Max FPS: 156.4

 

Comments

Took me 2.5 day to make this thing work on Win10... I started with Win10 1909, which Is known for Code 12 issue. Unfortunately, I have not tried eGPU toggler on this Win10. Maybe it could have saved me days (!!!).

On Win10 1909 I tried the following:

  1. apple_set_os.efi approach. Managed to load with iGPU activated (I had a total of 3 graphics adapters in Device Manager, dGPU was inactivated), but Code 12 was still present even after dozens of attempts of manual enable/disable of different ports/devices/etc.
  2. startup.nsh EFI Shell script approach. I would always be either stuck at 'Set as vendor to Apple Inc..' (apple_set_os.efi step within startup.nsh) or with the black screen. Once even though I bricked MBP... No reaction on turn on button whatsoever, just black screen, no fans, no keyboard light, nothing... only NVRAM reset helped (a combination of Command + Option + P + R + turn on button for 20s).

Therefore, whoever is experiencing the Code 12 issue, I highly recommend starting with the eGPU toggler (!!!). If you have any questions, please ask!

The overall experience of having it all working? I played Tom Clancy's The Division the night before on minimal graphics with 15 FPS. Next day I played it at Ultra 1440P at 60 FPS on the same 5 years old laptop. To say I was freaking out is not to say anything. I was having an orgasm after seeing the snow flakes, reflections of NYC in the puddles and could spend days just sitting and looking at fire. I honestly could not be happier 😀 !

This topic was modified 7 days ago
2015 15" MacBook Pro (R9 M370X) [4th,4C,H] + RX 5600 XT @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer Core X) + macOS 10.15.5 & Win10 [build link]  

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itsage
(@itsage)
Illustrious Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

@anton_puzorjov, Thank you for sharing this excellent build and your experience setting it all up. I hear you on the joy of getting everything working in the end.

 

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

To say I was freaking out is not to say anything. I was having an orgasm after seeing the snow flakes, reflections of NYC in the puddles and could spend days just sitting and looking at fire. I honestly could not be happier 😀 !

Ah, I echo this feeling! To me there is as much joy in the process of supporting eGPUs as using it. Was my exact reaction when I got things going first time around. It just opened up access to proper AAA games for me.

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