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2017 15" HP ZBook 15 G4 (Q M1200) [7th,4C,H] + Quadro [email protected]>TB1 (Sonn...
 

2017 15" HP ZBook 15 G4 (Q M1200) [7th,4C,H] + Quadro [email protected]>TB1 (Sonnet Echo Express Pro) + Win10 [Yukikaze]  

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Yukikaze
(@yukikaze)
Prominent Member Moderator
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Continuing my list of eGPUs in weird places and using weird devices series 🙂

I stumbled across an ancient Sonnet Echo Express Pro at work. It hasn't been used in years. The Echo Express Pro is a dual PCIe slot TB1 enclosure that takes two single-slot, full-length cards. I cannot snap pictures here due to workplace policies, so this build report is going to be very short on visuals.

Essentially, my workstation has three monitors: Two 4K screens and a 1200p monitor. The TB3 dock provided for my ZBook G4 cannot drive two 4K monitors by itself (even if the downlink TB3 port on it is used for this purpose), which meant that I had to run a USB-C to DisplayPort cable from my laptop's second TB3 port to the second 4K monitor, with the first 4K monitor and the 1200p one connected to the dock. Having to use two cables to dock at work, where I constantly run about to and from my desk was a little annoying, so I conspired to come up with a solution, and the Sonnet Echo Express Pro provided it.

I picked up a Quadro K2000 on ebay (it was mislabeled as a Quadro 2000, without the K, and thus cost 20$). It is a single-slot card based on the GK107 Kepler chip. It has 2xDisplayPort 1.2 outputs and a single DVI output. This matches my screen arrangement perfectly.

So now I have the following arrangement:
[ ZBook G4 ] <-- TB3 Cable --> [ HP ZBook TB3 Dock ] <-- Apple TB3 to TB Adapter --> <-- 2m Apple TB cable --> [Sonnet Echo Express Pro w/K2000] <-- 2xDP, 1xDVI --> [ 3 Monitors ].

This worked immediately. I guess it isn't terribly surprising in of itself, but does make for a pretty long chain. The more interesting part is running 3 monitors via an eGPU on a Thunderbolt1 link. I've ran a single 4K over TB1 before, but not two, and definitely not two with a yet another display in tow. This highlights just how much less data is being sent to the eGPU as compared to the video output going to the monitors (TB1 cannot run a single 4K at 60hz if used as a DisplayPort, since TB1 doubles as DisplayPort 1, rather than 2).

Obviously my use here isn't for gaming (my laptop's M1200 is a lot more powerful than the K2000 anyway), but this highlights how TB1 can be used to add multiple high resolution displays to an older system that otherwise would not be capable.

Hardware details

  • Laptop: 2017 HP ZBook G4 (i7-7820HQ, Quadro M1200, 32GB of DDR4-2000, 256GB NVMe SSD).
  • Screens: 2 x Sceptre U275W-4000R (3840x2160) via 2 x DisplayPort, HP LA2405wg (1920x1200) via DVI.
  • OS: Windows 10 Enterprise 64-bit (Version: 1709, Build: 16299.665).
  • eGPU: NVidia Quadro K2000.

0000SonnetEchoExpressProK2000Resized

This topic was modified 4 months ago

My eGPU Zoo - Link to my Implementations.
Want to output [email protected] out of an old system on the cheap? Read here.
Give your Node Pro a second Thunderbolt3 controller for reliable peripherals by re-using a TB3 dock (~50$).

"Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done, and why. Then do it."- Robert A. Heinlein, "Time Enough for Love."


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OliverB
(@oliverb)
Noble Member
Joined: 9 months ago
 
Posted by: Yukikaze

I picked up a Quadro K2000 on ebay (it was mislabeled as a Quadro 2000, without the K, and thus cost 20$). It is a single-slot card based on the GK107 Kepler chip. It has 2xDisplayPort 1.2 outputs and a single DVI output. This matches my screen arrangement perfectly.

You know that this particular card will run under Mojave? (Of course only the card with a "K").

2018 15" MBP & 2015 13" MBP connected to RTX2080Ti GTX1080Ti GTX1080 Vega56 RX580 R9-290 GTX680


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Yukikaze
(@yukikaze)
Prominent Member Moderator
Joined: 3 years ago
 

It is a Kepler generation card, so it might work even without any webdriver additions. It should be supported by the existing web drivers if the default drivers do not work with it. I am not 100% certain, but I think it should work with purge-wrangler.

EDIT: Side note, there's also a Quadro K2200 which is similar in form factor, but more expensive (I've seen them for 60-80$ or so). That one is a GM107 based Maxwell card, essentially a GTX750Ti (rather than the GTX650 that the K2000 is). That one should work via webdrivers, but will not work with the built-in drivers.

This post was modified 4 months ago

My eGPU Zoo - Link to my Implementations.
Want to output [email protected] out of an old system on the cheap? Read here.
Give your Node Pro a second Thunderbolt3 controller for reliable peripherals by re-using a TB3 dock (~50$).

"Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done, and why. Then do it."- Robert A. Heinlein, "Time Enough for Love."


ReplyQuote