2015 17" Lenovo Ideapad Y700 (GTX960M) [6th,4C,H] + GTX 970 @ 32Gbps-M.2 (ADT-Li...
 
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2015 17" Lenovo IdeaPad Y700 (GTX960M) [6th,4C,H] + GTX 970 @ 32Gbps-M.2 (ADT-Link R43SG) + Win10 [FHQ]  

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FHQ
 FHQ
(@fhq)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

System Specs

Lenovo Y700-17ISK (2015, 17")

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-6300HQ
  • iGPU: Intel 530
  • dGPU: GTX 960M
  • OS: Windows 10 1607 (RS1)

eGPU Hardware

Installation

1. The inside of the laptop, with a schematic overlay of the attempted setup:

Y700 17ISK (1) Overview

Note that it says "Connector Location" as I was initially hoping to place a connector there (see comments below).

2. Optional prerequisite: enable full DMI link speed either (1) from the Advanced menu of a modified BIOS or (2) by editing UEFI variables with H2OUVE or similar tool.

Y700 17ISK (2) UEFI

3. Cut a hole in the bottom cover (the so-called "D" panel) to put the cable through.

Y700 17ISK (3) Hole


Not the most beautiful hole you might have seen but it gets the job done.

4. Remove existing nVidia driver with DDU in Safe Mode. Otherwise, expect error code 31 in Device Manager: "The driver trying to start is not the same as the driver for the POSTed display adapter."

5. If you already got the -TU version, skip this step. Otherwise (if you got the regular version), note that the -TU version of R43SG is actually the same product as the regular version: the cable can be turned backwards after removing the tape that holds it, however this can be done only once (try again and it'll break).

Y700 17ISK (4) Cable

6. Connect the adapter to the M.2 port.

Y700 17ISK (5) Connector

7. Put the bottom case back on:

Y700 17ISK (6) Adapter

8. Place the external GPU card in the slot, connect the power, and boot the system.

Y700 17ISK (7) Card
Y700 17ISK (8) Zoom

I've just got this card second-hand, and have yet to remove the heatsink, reapply thermal paste and, yeah, also get rid of the stickers that were supposed to be gone before first use (years ago!).

9. Install nVidia drivers.

10. Optional: disable Optimus dGPU in Windows Device Manager, and then in the BIOS after reboot.

Benchmarks

Interface Speed

CUDA-Z

Y700 17ISK CUDA Z

AIDA64 GPGPU

Y700 17ISK GPGPU

Comments

I first attempted the setup with R44SF (M.2 extension cable) as well to have a separate connector, which would allow me to disconnect the adapter more easily when not in use: it worked, however the performance was not acceptable (data loss during transfers, manifesting itself with textures not loading on time or at all). According to ADT (the adapter manufacturer), for stable performance there cannot be any connectors besides the onboard M.2, and the total cable length should not exceed 60 cm. They told me this in advance, I tried it anyway, and can now confirm that they know their stuff.

For a rough performance assessment, GTA V at 1080p with the onboard GTX 960M dGPU on Very High detail and no MSAA is at ~ 40-45 fps at most, with frequent drops to ~ 30-35 fps and below. Even on lower settings, it is difficult to go above 60 fps. On the other hand, the GTX 970 I got does Ultra with MSAA at ~ 70 fps average, and not < 50 fps at any time, and with MSAA off the numbers can reach 120 fps and more. These are based on just a quick preliminary test but it is obviously a different experience altogether compared to the GTX 960M.

The caveat is the need to give up the ability to use the M.2 slot for an SSD, which also means no NVMe. I was originally using an M.2 SSD along with a 1TB HDD. I used this as an opportunity to ditch the HDD altogether and upgraded to a 1TB (SATA3) SSD now that they're no longer expensive.

Comments welcome.

Lenovo ThinkPad X220 w/ Exp GDC 8.5c via ExpressCard & M.2
Lenovo Y700-17ISK w/ ADT-Link R43SG-TU via NVMe [More Info]
EVGA GeForce GTX 970 SSC ACX 2.0+ (Part # 04G-P4-3975-KR)
PSU: Dell DA-2 D220P-01 (18A), Tyco CAD240121 (20A)

 
2015 17" Lenovo IdeaPad Y700 (GTX960M) [6th,4C,H] + GTX 970 @ 32Gbps-M.2 (ADT-Link R43SG) + Win10 [build link]  


mr.ribeiro, AMZMA, REGEN and 1 people liked
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Atadam
(@atadam)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

Hi, @fhq

Got regular version of R43SG and need to convert it to TU version

Can you give more info about TU version conversion, how to twist wires etc.?

CLEVO W670RCQ
i7-6700HQ, 16 GB DDR3 Ram, AMD 5700 XT on 32 Gbps x4 3.0 ADT-Link R43SG M2 eGPU Adapter


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joevt
(@joevt)
Noble Member
Joined: 4 years ago
 

@atadam

I think you just bend the entire flat cable slowly, carefully, evenly, the other way.
https://www.adt.link/product/R43SG.html

 

Mac mini (2018), Mac Pro (Early 2008), GA-Z170X-Gaming 7, Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 580 8GB GDDR5, Radeon Pro W5700, Sonnet Echo Express III-D, Trebleet Thunderbolt 3 to NVMe M.2 case


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Atadam
(@atadam)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

Seems like it, thanks @joevt

CLEVO W670RCQ
i7-6700HQ, 16 GB DDR3 Ram, AMD 5700 XT on 32 Gbps x4 3.0 ADT-Link R43SG M2 eGPU Adapter


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Dinesh A
(@dinesh_a)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
 

Hey FHQ,

 

Thanks for the detailed post. I also have a Lenovo 15ISK and looking to get a R43SF TU to connect a 5600 XT , in the pictures i see that u kept the Gcard on top of the laptop. But how would u power it on when the Gcard is on top of the laptop. I really dont have to use the internal screen but icant keep it closed as i have to open the laptop to power it on.\

Do u have an alternate solution.

 

Thanks.

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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Dinesh A
(@dinesh_a)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
 

Hey FHQ,

 

Thanks for the detailed post. I also have a Lenovo 15ISK and looking to get a R43SF TU to connect a 5600 XT , in the pictures i see that u kept the Gcard on top of the laptop. But how would u power it on when the Gcard is on top of the laptop. I really dont have to use the internal screen but icant keep it closed as i have to open the laptop to power it on.\

Do u have an alternate solution.

 

Thanks.

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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Fridj
(@fridj)
New Member
Joined: 10 months ago
 

@dinesh_a, I found the lenovo button very useful in this kind of situation.

You'll find a little hole near the jack slot, you just need a hairpin to go inside and press it. It should power on the pc asking you for a selection from 4 options, but the first one is actually "Boot up windows normally".

So you just press enter with an external keyboard attached, and voilà.

EDIT: I totally forgot, in order to have that button functioning, you must firstly stop the detection of the lid closure. In order to do so, you'll need to remove 3 magnets under the screen bezel.

I don't know if all 3 magnets must be removed, but I removed all 3 of them to be sure, and I actually removed also 2 other magnets placed on the bottom cover to be super sure. You just need to hoove over a metal object to find where they are. After that, the Lenovo button will work even with the lid closed, yay.

I'm managing to upgrade my Lenovo y700 with an external GTX 1660 ti, so I'll keep with an update

 

This post was modified 8 months ago

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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seleroff
(@seleroff)
New Member
Joined: 1 month ago
 

Hi, can anyone please explain what is the difference between ADT-Link R43SG and ADT-Link R43SG-TU? And what would happen if I try to connect ADT-Link R43SG to Lenovo 15isk? Can anyone also explain bit more what "Twist cable" means. Is it unsoldering it and changing them in place? Thanks

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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Dinesh A
(@dinesh_a)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
 

@seleroff, Hey I did my setup with ADT-Link R43SG and when i connected it the board where u connect graphics card will be present in front of the laptop. If u buy the TU version the board where u connect the gcard will be in the back of the laptop as shown in the above tutorial. I did not do the 'twist cable' part as I was ok with the gcard being in front. I connected a monitor to the Gcard so it didnt bother me. anyways the length of the cable also matters depending on if you are choosing regular or TU as TU needs the cable to travel over 60% of the motherboard it would need a longer cable length. Anyways Im not using this setup anymore and I still have the ADT-Link R43SG. if you are in USA, DM me if you are interested in getting it from me. 

 

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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