2018 15" Dell XPS 15 9575 (VegaMGL) [8th,4C,G] + GTX 1070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (AORUS Gaming Box) + Win10 [usafballer]
Some folks probably interested in this build!
System specs (model inc screen size, CPU, iGPU, dGPU, operating system)
- Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 (9575)
- Core i7-8705G with Radeon Vega M GL graphics (4GB HBM2)
- 16GB DDR4 Ram
- 512GB SSD (SKHynix)
- FHD Screen
- Windows 10 Home Fall Creators update (I think)
eGPU hardware (eGPU enclosure, video card, any third-party TB3 cable, any custom mods)
Custom Mod to make the Aorus Box quieter using aftermarket fans and resistors
Will try to upload, but I am currently on a military deployment, so my setup is in my tiny box of a room
Installation steps (what did you do to get it all going?)
- Plugged In to top-left most port (second TB3 port closer to TAB key has issues with eGPU)
- Approved device in TB3 software to always connect
- Selected device from Device Manager and let windows find updated driver
- Disable Internal Video Card as I’m trying to drive the internal display only
- Subsequent uses of the eGPU are plug and play, although I seem to have to plug in once, get a message in windows that says “device functionality is limited” and then when I unplug, wait 10 seconds and plug in again, it seems to work that time to attach the 1070
- I am currently running the slower H2D firmware – because that had better performance/reliability with the AGB’s attached storage on my Macbook Pro – I may try the full-H2D firmware to see if it all works well
- I am having more issues driving internal display with many titles though, some work perfectly fine, others refuse to accelerate with the 1070
- Wish I had an external display to test it out with as it would likely be a significantly more straightforward use
- Oddly CUDA-Z reports severely restricted H2D bandwidth in both firmware updates. UPDATE: This must be a bug because all my benchmarks are in line with what they should be for internal screen mirroring.
- Checking HWInfo report - seems all should be fine right? 4X PCIe lanes and 8.0 GT/s throughput?
Comments (eg: how has the eGPU improved your workflow or gaming?)
- So far I find the performance driving the internal display only a minor upgrade over my 2016 Macbook Pro w/TB setup (maybe 10-20%), but I am still experimenting with various settings on this complex laptop. Full H2D firmware reports the same limited H2D in Cuda-Z...this is weird. Macbook Pro reports 22XX MiBs though, so I know the firmware is working.
- Using the "quiet" fan mode in the Dell Power Manager ensures the fans are relatively quiet when using an eGPU.
- Recent BIOS update to 1.1.5 is continuing to improve the overall fan situation, and overall, even under load, this laptop is quieter than gaming notebooks
- It’s still spotty on the overall initial connection with the eGPU – having to plug in once, unplug, and then plug in again to have the 9575 recognize the 1070 is troubling, but this may be a Windows update/driver/firmware thing
- The eGPU is a more stable gaming experience than using the internal Vega chip, which tends to have confusing behavior at times (i.e., sometimes I can game on the Vega at the full 1,011 Mhz, and sometimes it power throttles).
- The 100W power delivery from the AGB is not sufficient enough to game on the 9575 without battery draining – which is surprising, and this also impacts performance as the system will act like it’s operating on battery power. Plugging in both OEM AC adapter and the TB3 cable are required.
I will update this Implementation guide as I learn more. It’s not as straightforward as I would like.
I decided to delete this post - the information may have been bad. Seems the upper left most TB3 port on the 9575 might be working better then the one closer to the tab key, but still so much more testing required.
I can't login using my reddit linked account while at work, but this is the same guy as the OP.
Some updates worth mentioning. I've returned the 9575 due to 3 things:
- Primary reason for return - PL throttling on the internal Vega GPU. Unreliable at gaming without an eGPU
- Second Reason: Initial eGPU connection was ALWAYS a failure. I received "Thunderbolt Device Might be Limited" message and the external GPU would not mount. A second plug would work though.
- Third Reason: There was a firmware bug with how the 9575 would remain stuck in AC power mode after unplugging the eGPU - it would report "plugged in not charging" despite nothing being plugged in at all. I could clear this state by plugging in the AC adapter to the same port the eGPU was previously plugged in to.
- Various other reasons: Vega driver was spotty, and running an NVidia eGPU and internal AMD GPU may have caused some sub-optimal behavior. Additionally, CUDA-Z only reported that 8XX MiB/s performance.
I need to update my bottom line observations as well:
- Game performance wasn't a big upgrade over my MBP. Some titles ran better on the 9575, some worse.
- Better titles: Doom, Dying Light, Far Cry 5, Uningine Valley, 3DMark Firestrike
- Titles that Performed more or less the same: Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Dishonored 2
- Titles that Perform Worse: AC: Origins, Civ 6 (although both were very playable)
- The internal Vega GPU ran Origins better than the eGPU! This was similar with Deus Ex: MD
Bottom line - I know there was a new TB firmware update the day I boxed up and returned the 9575. Continued BIOS improvements also may sort things out. The troubling CUDA-Z report on the H2D bandwidth was odd, but overall the benchmarks reported consistent scores with other 1070s I saw on this forum.
I'm chomping at the bit to see how the 9570 performs and behaves with eGPUs. The reality is I may have stuck with the 9575 if I didn't struggle with PL throttling when not using the eGPU, but that was the back breaker. It is possible the H2D bandwidth was really handicapped, and while it may not have shown up on the standard benchmarks, may have impacted some of these games. with erratic performance, especially since I ONLY drove the internal laptop screen in all my tests.
Yes its very surprising, looking forward to your results!
As i was thinking about getting a 9570 as well i found this report:
take a look at the Thunderbolt 3 section where they talk about the eGPU perfromance, honestly it doesnt look good >.> firestrike below 12k with a 1070 is just not great especially with a graphicsscore belo 13k - it scored worse then the 13 inch 9370 <.<
hope you fare better - let us know how it goes!
I responded to this discrepancy with the 9570 and eGPU in another thread:
Same guy said he got better scores on his 9575 - so this basically is killing my desire to go with the 9570 for now. Cost benefit is falling apart, and the Alienware 15r4 offers more bang for the buck for me. Not that anyone probably cares, but since I love my MacBook Pro for all non-gaming tasks, I really didn't want to part with it.
- My 9570 (15% military discount too) + $2TB SATA Drive (not necessary, but I want to avoid external storage use with eGPUs) + eGPU + 2M Cable
- $1788 + $461 + $550 + $60 + parts I needed to make the Aorus gaming Box quieter ($40) = $2899
- My MacBook Pro used value + Alienware 15r4 (i7/1070/256GB SSD/GSync/1TB HDD/16GB) + 1TB add'l SSD
- $1300 + $1566 + $200 = $3,066
- I lose the best 4K touch screen on the market and having to maintain one computer, but retain my love of MacOS and all that I find useful about it and my iPhone, and gain a ridiculously powerful laptop gaming system.
I realize I'm a big edge case - but I want games running at max settings 45-60FPS, and eGPUs aren't consistently doing that for me. I also realize you could buy a lower end XPS15 for 1 grand and pair with an eGPU, but after adding the necessary storage, you will still be above 2 grand for the setup.
I'm not hating on eGPUs, I love the concept, and the thermal/acoustic benefit when systems run quietly without fans (my MBP is perfect at this). I hope TB3 gets direct connections to CPUs, and included in more and more cheap systems as time goes on. Add that to increasingly cheap eGPU enclosures and hopefully cheaper GPUs in late 2018 and beyond - and it's still on the right path.
Nice post! Just like in the other post i agree with the conclusion >.> im at a very similar point, i went into detail here: https://egpu.io/forums/which-gear-should-i-buy/ultrabook-buyers-guide-external-gpu/#post-38996
if your interested i also there talked a bit about integration of TB3 into the CPU in the 2019 chip of intel which they announced in 2017, i think this is the right track and im very much hoping for eGPUs + super portable ultrabooks to soon replace everything else i am using atm computer wise, but i also think we arent there yet >.> the AW15 is a good option, so is the G3 or the Omen... a laptop to keep up with what i do till eGPUs are ready.
maybe by then we can also get our hands on things like THOR I ^^