2018 15" MacBook Pro (RP560X) [8th,6C,H] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Break...
 
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2018 15" MacBook Pro (RP560X) [8th,6C,H] + RX Vega 64 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway 350) + macOS 10.14 & Win10 [mac_editor]  

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

System Specifications

  • MacBook Pro 15" (2018)
  • CPU: 2.6 GHz Intel Core i7 (i7-8850H)
  • GPU(s): Intel UHD 630, Radeon Pro 560X
  • macOS 10.14.x Windows 10

 

eGPU Specifications

  • Sonnet Breakaway eGFX 350W -> 600W Corsair Upgraded
  • Sapphire RX Vega 64 8GB
  • Apple TB3 Cable

 

Installation

The installation process is usually straightforward if you use one of the solutions on this forum.

For macOS

Native compatibility: This eGPU setup has official support and does not require any additional software-work to get working. It is also easy to connect multiple such eGPUs.

Not all applications take advantage of external GPUs. For that, one can use set-eGPU.sh or Prefer External GPU option in Mojave.

 

For Windows 10

Drawback: Unable to use internal display, but performance gains worth it on external monitor(s). Thanks to @itsage and @chris_moran, we stumbled upon a way to keep the internal display active.

The setup process is simple:

  1. Download a copy of AMD drivers from bootcampdrivers.com  (my recommendation: 19.3.3).
  2. Use DDU to uninstall Apple-provided drivers. It is recommended to do so in Windows Safe Mode.
  3. Boot back into Windows normally and install the downloaded drivers.
  4. Once the Radeon Pro 560X is up and running, hot-plug eGPU. It should default to Error 12.
  5. Once you see error 12, uninstall the Vega device from Device Manager > Displays.
  6. Reboot with the eGPU plugged in. All displays should be active.
  7. Repeat Step 5-7 for every Windows boot to ensure the internal display works. If the internal display is not required, just boot with the eGPU plugged in.

 

Basically, to keep the internal display active, the eGPU needs to be uninstalled from the Device Manager in a prior boot. Then the eGPU + internal display should function as long as you boot with the AMD eGPU plugged in.

 

Undervolting Vega

For my reference Sapphire design, I had the following goals:

  • Efficiency: I am using a 600W supply, less than the recommended 650W.
  • Consistent Performance: Tying into efficiency, power throttling means inconsistent performance.
  • Overclocking Comes Free: If I can, overclock a little.

 

The results were positive, as can be seen in the following GPU-Z capture:

My settings:

  • Clocks: Core -> Untouched, Mem -> +145 MHz to 1050 MHz, and haven't tried to push even.
  • Voltages: Core -> -150 mV, could go lower too I think, Mem -> -240 mV, excessively lowering voltage may cause hard-lock at 500 MHzSee comments for more insight regarding memory voltage.

 

Benchmarks

Some interesting benchmarks on macOS (Valley: 1440x900 Ultra 8x):

Valley, Radeon Pro 560X

Valley, Vega 64

LuxMark, Radeon Pro 560X

LuxMark, Vega 64

 

Comments

My experience and benchmarks make the following clear:

  • Compute performance over 560X: ~6x.
  • Valley really does not do well on AMD cards, and both cards perform better on the bench in Windows.
  • Vega has tremendous potential when undervolted. On the reference cooler, I was able to manage about 70-75°C at 1600/1040 MHz with 200-220W GPU-only draw. I'm sure I could push clocks higher but not by much as loudness is a factor as well. I have steeply undervolted, at least ~-150mV. I am not a hardcore clocker, so as long as the GPU maintains it's advertised 1600+ frequency I'm ok. Note that as @kelvin_tan pointed in one of the posts below, Wattman memory voltage only represents floor voltage, and not peak voltage, which I thought I was changing. This means most of the above gains come from the undervolted cores.
  • I have looked into overclocking/undervolting on macOS and might build a little tool to achieve the same on macOS, but Mojave is generally great at handling the GPU. The other communities have developed solutions for this, such as VegaTAB. While the kext itself did not work, I essentially generated the PowerPlay Table and updated the original controller with the settings for a successful undervolt. Due to my use case on macOS, there was meagre difference so I decided to forego undervolting on macOS.

 

Windows benchmarks will be added soon.

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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esatamacmodular
(@esatamacmodular)
Estimable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

very nice! wondering if win10 internal display limitation is for all 2018 15" MBP ?

For Windows 10 Drawback: Unable to use internal display, but performance gains worth it on external monitor(s).

iMac 2013 10.14.1, Macbook Air 2013 10.11, MBP 2016 13" 10.13.6 , HP 4530s 10.11, node lite, DA-2 PSU w/mod, PE4L 2.1b expresscard34, GTX460,1050Ti,1060,1070/Ti RX470,560,580

 
2016 13" MacBook Pro [6th,2C,U] + GTX 1060 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Node Lite) + macOS 10.13.6 [build link]  


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

@esatamacmodular Yes, when coupled with an AMD eGPU internal display doesn't function.

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

Nice build! It's too bad about the internal display. I no longer have the 2018 15" MacBook Pro to test but here's an idea if you'd like to try. In my 2016 15" MacBook Pro + dual RX 580 eGPUs, I disabled the PCIe controller to the TB3 ports that's not in use. The PCIe controller 1901 to dGPU was disabled too. In your build though we need the dGPU to be enabled and working.

My suggestion is to boot into Windows with @goalque's EFI solution and no AMD eGPU connected. Make sure at least one PCIe controller is disabled and Large Memory allocation is present in Device Manager. Hot-plug the RX Vega 64 eGPU and see whether the system would detect and prompt you to reboot.

external graphics card builds
best laptops for external GPU
eGPU enclosure buyer's guide

 
2020 13" MacBook Pro [10th,4C,G] + RX 5700 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Prototype eGPU Enclosure) + macOS 10.15.4 & Win10 1903 [build link]  


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

Have added some data on undervolting/GPU performance in Windows after some tuning.

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]  


hornedfrog and itsage liked
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Sam.mcbride
(@sam-mcbride)
New Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

Great work! Do you think the set-egpu script will work with macOS 10.14 with an Nvidia card? (I have the 1080ti/Mantiz Venus/macbook pro 15 in 2017)

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

@sam-mcbride Mojave has the feature built in and for the time being set-eGPU does not work on Mojave.

Though for NVIDIA you need to wait for web drivers. 

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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OliverB
(@oliverb)
Noble Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 
Posted by: itsage

Nice build! It's too bad about the internal display. I no longer have the 2018 15" MacBook Pro to test but here's an idea if you'd like to try. In my 2016 15" MacBook Pro + dual RX 580 eGPUs, I disabled the PCIe controller to the TB3 ports that's not in use. The PCIe controller 1901 to dGPU was disabled too. In your build though we need the dGPU to be enabled and working.

My suggestion is to boot into Windows with @goalque's EFI solution and no AMD eGPU connected. Make sure at least one PCIe controller is disabled and Large Memory allocation is present in Device Manager. Hot-plug the RX Vega 64 eGPU and see whether the system would detect and prompt you to reboot.

@itsage: I have this setup, of course, there is no internal display. Im willing to try things. Disabling 1905 unfortunaly didn't help. This Error 12 only comes when I hotplug the Vega eGPU:

Erro12ForVega

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

 
2018 15" MacBook Pro (RP560X) [8th,6C,H] + RX 5700 XT @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 & macOS 10.15.4 [build link]  


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3mVideo
(@3mvideo)
New Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 

Tell please after Upgraded power supply 350W up-dating-> 600W  you received charging for MacBook Pro 15"  in 87Вт?

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

@3mvideo No, power delivery does not change. That is dependent on the enclosure firmware.

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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