2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro)...
 
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2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [lwf]  

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lwf
 lwf
(@lwf)
Trusted Member
Joined: 5 months ago
 

I posted my original build in July. Since then I have swapped a 5700XT that I wasn't super impressed with, and my Valve index arrived! I am trying get the most out of an eGPU setup in terms of VR capability.

This morning I picked up a Zotac RTX 3070 OC. The results are mostly great, but I am not "feeling" a lot of difference in terms of VR. It's very playable with a 5700XT and remains playable.

 

System specs

2020 Lenovo Slim 7 15" - i7-1065G7/Iris Plus iGPU/16GB RAM/512GB SSD/Windows 10

 

eGPU hardware

ASUS XG Station Pro
Nvidia RTX 3070

 

Hardware pictures

Here is the Slim 7:

61019597 3C27 4702 970E B0C8021C78A0

The XGS Pro:

8975DF47 AFE5 4048 8813 2E8F27E3179B
0

 Installation steps

I was using the XGS Pro empty as a hub after returning the RX 5700 XT.

I turned it off, seated the GPU, turned it back on, and installed the nVidia drivers and she came to life.

Benchmarks

AIDA:

XGS AIDA 3070

Valley:

I have been trying to take consistent samples on Valley, here is a comparison of my rig on RX 5700 XT vs RTX 3070:

RX 5700 XT:

valley5700xt

RTX 3070:

valley3070

edit: by disabling g-sync I'm up to 5070 pts, 121.2 FPS.

Comments

Based on the Valley benchmark the RTX 3070 is head and shoulders above the RX 5700 XT, but my score seems lower than similar builds with RTX 2080 ti. This could be due to some of my driver settings, I will continue to tweak and test and post my best score here. Currently the RTX 3070 is running with HAGS and I hope to do some comparison on that as well.

 

2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [build link]  

James Knight, itsage, mr.ribeiro and 1 people liked
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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 4 years ago
 

@lwf, Thank you for sharing this build with the RTX 3070! Everytime I see the ASUS XG Station Pro I wish I could use it more, such a clean design and the cooling system was excellent! Was both benchmark results with an external monitor? It seems lower than what RX 5700 XT eGPU can do in Valley Extreme HD.

 

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

 
2020 15" HP Spectre X360 [11th,4C,G] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (AORUS Gaming Box) + Win10 2004 [build link]  


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drdoom2k
(@drdoom2k)
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Joined: 2 months ago
 

@lwf, very interesting, thanks for sharing. I had around 95fps with my 2070 super and am using it with my Quest 2 - I wonder if we are approaching the limits of TB3 (and 4) or if a stronger cpu would help...

 

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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lwf
 lwf
(@lwf)
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Joined: 5 months ago
 

@itsage, I'm using an external monitor. Not sure what is holding me back, it could be my driver settings in particular freesync, maybe my windows installed is gummed up. I am constantly tweaking and changing drivers so my benchmarks are not so consistent, but I always try to see how high I can score.

I still really like the XGS Pro, I have adjusted the GPU fans to keep the temp below the eGPU fan start, so just browsing the web is dead silent consistently (would prefer if I could directly control the eGPU fans). There are better enclosures performance wise, but this provides a good balance.

 

@drdoom2k, my sense is that the CPU and cooling makes a big difference. There should be some AMD 4000 laptops with TB3 coming soon, I look forward to seeing how they perform.

2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [build link]  

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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 4 years ago
 

@lwf, I have found Radeon 20.4.2 to be most consistent in terms of eGPU performance. Through an external monitor, the RX 5700 XT eGPU should get close to 100FPS in Valley Extreme HD. Your Thunderbolt 3 connection is good so I would say to keep a log on the CPU. Turn G-Sync/FreeSync off helps too.

 

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

 
2020 15" HP Spectre X360 [11th,4C,G] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (AORUS Gaming Box) + Win10 2004 [build link]  


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lwf
 lwf
(@lwf)
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Joined: 5 months ago
 

@itsage, do you have any recommendation for best Nvidia eGPU driver?

2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [build link]  

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

@lwf, I don't use Nvidia eGPU as often so I can't really recommend one version that works best. Besides the RTX 3070 just came out so you're limited to which version has support for it.

 

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

 
2020 15" HP Spectre X360 [11th,4C,G] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (AORUS Gaming Box) + Win10 2004 [build link]  


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lwf
 lwf
(@lwf)
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Joined: 5 months ago
 

@itsage, well, I can report that using the "clean" nvidia drivers makes a +100 pt difference in Valley without HAGS, and +200 with HAGS.

Here are my results, bench was run after a clean boot each time:

Standard Driver:

No HAGS

FPS:
121.5
Score:
5086
Min FPS:
37.1
Max FPS:
188.7

HAGS

FPS:
121.2
Score:
5070
Min FPS:
35.8
Max FPS:
196.2

Clean Driver:

No HAGS

FPS:
123.4
Score:
5164
Min FPS:
37.6
Max FPS:
197.8

HAGS

FPS:
125.9
Score:
5268
Min FPS:
36.5
Max FPS:
201.4

I don't know what all is missing from the clean driver, I was concerned that it might cut out something necessary for eGPU operation but so far it is working just fine.

2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [build link]  

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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 4 years ago
 

@lwf, That's good to know. The performance is now more in line with RTX 2080 Ti eGPU.

 

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

 
2020 15" HP Spectre X360 [11th,4C,G] + RTX 2080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB4 (AORUS Gaming Box) + Win10 2004 [build link]  


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lwf
 lwf
(@lwf)
Trusted Member
Joined: 5 months ago
 

@itsage, since my last update I have done some additional tweaking and testing. I did experience some hot-plug problems with those cleaned drivers so I installed using NVSlimmer instead and kept a few more of the components. It seems to be working better, unfortunately I can't remember exactly what I ended up keeping (may have been Optimus) - but I cut out all the telemetry and bug reporting and experience elements. Still not sure if it is 100% fixed.

Another issue that I was having was quite bad coil whine but only at idle. It would go away briefly when the GPU would clock up, for instance when switching virtual desktops. I managed to get rid of it almost entirely using Afterburner - what I did was offset the clock down as far as possible. For some reason this would force the memory clock to double at idle, and the coil whine is almost gone. To maintain decent gaming clocks I manually adjusted the clock/voltage curve to 1.000v @ 2070GHz. I also have overclocked the memory by 200Mhz although I think it can go as high as 1000Mhz O/C. I may sell or return the Zotac 3070 if I can get another to see if the coil whine is only on that card.

I also figured out what was "holding me back", I have undervolted the CPU to help minimize power usage, heat, and throttling. To ensure stability I have a main profile that limits the clock multiplier (I also have another profile for browing etc designed to keep the fans from coming on). When I changed to my performance profile which is not limited at all, my scores increased significantly. This works in something like valley because the CPU is not really stressed too much, but in a game I would likely have experienced crashes.

Using these settings just now I ran Valley, I did not reboot and even kept firefox and chrome open, but the results were my best yet:

valley3070   slim,HAGS,perf

This is higher even than itsage's results on his new Tiger Lake laptop. Undervolting has been totally disabled in Tiger Lake but since it can clock so much higher I am sure that better performance can be had.

Anyway, I am reporting all of this in case anybody else may find it useful down the road.

CPU clock speed seems to be a big factor in eGPU performance. Not sure if this is especially the case on Ice Lake and later - perhaps TB3 performance on these CPUs is tied in some way to clock speed. Would there be any to way to test just TB3 performance in relation to CPU clock?

 

2020 15" Lenovo Slim 7 [10th,4C,G] + RTX 3070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 [build link]  

James Knight, itsage, drdoom2k and 1 people liked
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