2018 Mac Mini [8th,6C,B] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Razer Core X) + macOS 10.14.6 & Win10 [ttamnogard]
Hi, I m running windows 10 version 1909. would this work also for me ?.
I m trying to get this to work but with no luck.
no matter what I tried, 1903 build 295 is the sweet spot. I manually patch the machine with the various KB items and security updates (like various runtime engines etc).
My machine runs perfectly as is... I keep Mojave updated (10.14.6) and windows as I said before. I ended up going with the 1440p 165htz monitor and just absolutely love it. The VII can peg the FPS in windows at 165 pretty easily with my custom settings. I can hold 100 fps on epic with a bit of playing around in Windows.
I am at a point where I either wait for the next generation of mac mini or just consider this a complete build for what it is. I have tons of RAM and HD space room... and my cooling solutions, while not perfect, are the best as it can get for now... even with fans pegged and a bigger fan. Since I would have to really play around with the enclosure, there isn't really a water solution that will work. I tried putting a massive radiator (with thermal padding) on the enclosure and saw no difference... it came down to always booting in Mac... if I want to game, set the fans to full blast and reboot... I still hit throttle on various cores (95C) but the clock speed it holds at is still way more than I need for what I do.
This set up still cost me the mobility but the trade off is what it is.
Thank you for the explanation. it really helped me get this to work.
I have some questions still : sometimes when i reboot ON macos it won’t load when the GPU is connected on boot. this happens 20% of the time or once every 5 reboots (approximately). what can be the problem ?.
Another questions is : how can i maximize the use of the GPU ?. For example , When i play Need For Speed Heat at 4K ultra settings i get 30-35 FPS while the GPU is only used at 40%. Does that mean that the TB3 cable is the bottleneck or something else is the bottleneck ?.
Finally, how can i prevent windows from updating to the 1909 build. I want to avoid a scenario where windows will update to a build that will cause the GPU to not work again ?. how do you prevent this ?.
Other than these concerns i really like the setup. Thank you for your help.
I modified it with a bigger fan (Noctua). The key is that the cut aluminum fits perfectly with the mac body. Good seal. I also added extended feet... I also run Macs Fan Control and have it manage temps... unless I am running Google Chrome, my mini already barely hits 60C... now, when I am running boot camp, I first boot into Mac and set the fans to full blast... since this is saved in a protected location, the fans stay on full when I am in Windows (it remembers what is set). Running games etc, I will throttle at 95C on a few cores even with everything on full. This is powering both a 1440p on high settings and well as a 1080p on high... There is only so much you can do with the antenna plate in the way underneath. I tried thermal padding and radiators on the outside chassis but that did nothing... I considered a custom external water cooler but again, you are only cooling the external aluminum.
The Speed cooler is interesting but my testing of airflow shows that the antenna plate and restrictive existing fan make its usefulness limited. Now, if you remove that antenna plate (so, using the hardwired ethernet) and move the old fan out of the way, I would be interested in seeing the thermal results (that may be my next experiment).
I'll add a picture to my set up once I get home tonight. Is there anything you'd like me to test for you?
No not really. It seems then it's not worth it then. I can't remove the antenna plate as I need wifi. Thank you for your detailed post. You should post a youtube video about this fan as there are limited reviews online. The seller of the fan has a couple videos but they're terrible.
I was out of the area for a bit and I did not see your question.
Regarding a failure to boot... I never have had this as the mac mini natively supports eGPU with 10.14.6 (my OS X version). I have only ever had to use the native iGPU when I was building the Boot Camp set up initially. GPU utilization is an interesting thing in Mac OS. You can, at least prior, tell OS X to "Prefer eGPU" for an application but it is ultimately up to the code of the game to tell the system what to do. It's why there is so much fun when comparing Adobe Premier to Final Cut Pro... they both utilize the system differently...
If you are looking to boot into Windows consistently, then 90% of the time you should be fine... I only got in trouble when I updated a driver for the monitor and it wasn't happy.
To stop the upgrades, Windows has the tool called gpedit (Group Policy edit). What you need to change is under Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates ->Windows Components->Windows Update
You should see a list of Settings in the right pane... you want to click on Configure Automatic Updates (a popup will appear)
In this popup (reading from top down), first click the Enabled Radio button.
Below are 2 side by side windows, the window on the right is just FYI, the window on the left is what you want to set up... in the pulldown, select 2.
Apply and ok....
Now, when you check for updates it will just notify you... you will have to download and install KB items by hand where applicable ( https://www.catalog.update.microsoft.com/Home.aspx )... it requires a bit of legwork to understand the various KB items, but you'll be good to go when it comes to things like updating virus definitions or specific component updates.
My wife tells me to not post videos because I say "um" way too much (I have posted a few videos on the sounds of various car exhausts hahahaha).
I did follow a video of a user who updated their fan (that's what I did too). I don't have any before or after but I can always run istat menu or whatever it is called to log temps of the system running as-is and then when the fans are on.
To your point:
The SPEED is not really worth it in that the mini is not built for forced air... it is designed for air to be pulled by the internal fan. Whatever Apple airflow spec they chose is the max cap. The Speed does nothing but keep the antenna plate cool which is NOT, based on my amateur testing, a heat dissipation spot. If you are really pushing to cool your internals, using the Mac Fans control (which works fine in Mac OS with or without the T2 just not in Windows without starting up in Mac, turning on the fans, then rebooting to Windows), will see your best performance... (I set her to full blast and it keeps the system right on target for 90% of usage). Also, the mini is design to push the heat to the chassis... which is also aluminum (see below). Induction cooling would require an iron plate. Treating the external case as a CPU and you are attaching the CPU cooler is another thought... (I just don't see this as a logical or reasonable approach).
Now, to think wildly outside the box:
Where things get useful for the SPEED is if you can figure out how to do lower-than-ambient cooling. The Speed is cut from Aluminum so you can't cool it specifically using induction cooling but if you can figure out how to add an iron base or platform, then you can have the SPEED blowing actually "chilled" air...
personally, if you can get the case lower than ambient temp, run the fans at full, and without getting too cold that you risk condensation.... you have something there...
More for the fun of it I would assume at that point... so of course I am going to try it. 😉