2017 13" MacBook Air [5th,2C,U] + RX 460 @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer Core X) + macOS...
 
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2017 13" MacBook Air [5th,2C,U] + RX 460 @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer Core X) + macOS 10.15.4 [steve_pan]  

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Steve Pan
(@steve_pan)
New Member
Joined: 7 months ago
 

System Specs 

- 2017 13" Macbook Air (1.8Ghz Intel Core i5-5350U) (rare species here, but posting it for students who aspire to play SOME games smoothly to help them out)

- iGPU: Intel HD Graphics 6000 1536 MB 

- RAM: 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3

Using internal LCD for the time being as running a low entry level graphics card, and was also afraid of the CPU bottleneck if using a higher tier graphics card. Was obviously on a budget. 

 

Hardware 

Razer Core X, thunderbolt 3 cable and thunderbolt 3-2 adapter. And of course the RX460 graphics card. 

 

(Hardware pictures aren't available before making 5 posts, but basically just connecting wires to the correct ports, simple Smile )

Installation Steps 

Since RX460 is an AMD card which is supported by Apple and tested to be plug and play by a lot of Mac OSes (yes, including Catalina), installation steps were as simple as plugging in the RX460 into the PCIE slot,  using purge-wrangle.sh from https://github.com/mayankk2308/purge-wrangler/wiki/Beginne r's-Guide, and you're good to go Smile I believe that's the same for most AMD cards out there using Mac OS (using in bootcamp will bring you on an exciting adventure called Code 12 which I would not want to go through)

 

Benchmarks 

No benchmarks were run, but managed to play some of my favorite games as shown below. 

 

Total War Three Kingdoms (that's hell ambitious right) : average of 30 fps on Low 

The Long Dark: average of 30-40 fps average on Ultra 

Sleeping Dogs Definitive Edition: 30-40 fps average on Medium

 

Comments 

And there you have it. It's quite possible to play on a pathetic Macbook Air with "acceptable" quality, if you're on a tight budget and not aiming for a 60+fps in gameplay. 

However, Razer Core X does not support RX460 cards as stated from their official webpage (surprising because Razer Core X seems to be the silver bullet for all eGPU compatibility problems for TB3 laptops), hence there were some problems with connectivity and getting Purge Wrangler to detect the eGPU. I had to plug and unplug the eGPU several times before getting Purge Wrangler to detect it, which was a hassle. Other than that, after setting it up, everything was plug and play on my internal LCD, no hotplugs or EFI bootloader required in Mac OS Smile Safe as hell to boot up with the TB2 cable plugged in an eGPU on too. 

Recently just got a nVidia GTX 1660 Super to work with bootcamp, because I dont have to go through code 12. Will post up another topic specifically on it after i've managed to get it working within the internal LCD. 

2017 13" MacBook Air [5th,2C,U] + GTX 1660 Super @ 16Gbps-TB2>TB3 (Razer Core X) + Win10 [build link]  

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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
Noble Member Moderator
Joined: 4 years ago
 

Grat to see what you can do with a Macbook Air and eGPU... a Node Lite and an RX460/560 would also have been a great little combo to pair with your Air.

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar
GTX1060 + AKiTiO Thunder3 + Win10
GTX1070 + Sonnet Breakaway Box + Win10
GTX1070 + Razer Core V1 + Win10
Vega 56 + Razer Core V1 + macOS + Win10
Vega 56 + Mantiz Venus + macOS + W10

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LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix

 
2017 13" MacBook Pro [7th,2C,U] + RX 5700 XT @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.15.4 & Win10 2004 [build link]  


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