Late 2016 15" MacBook Pro + GTX [email protected] (ASUS XG Station Pro) + macOS10.13.5 [theitsage]  

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theitsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 3104
June 21, 2018 2:25 pm  

I'm testing @Goalque's EFI-boot loader to enable Nvidia eGPU in 10.13.5 and newer. The newest beta version is an pkg installer that's easy to use.

 

System specs:

2016 15" MacBook Pro - i7-6700HQ/Radeon Pro 450 dGPU/HD Graphics 530 iGPU/16GB RAM/256GB SSD

 

eGPU hardware:

ASUS XG Station Pro + ASUS Strix GTX 1080 Ti + 1.5m Thunderbolt 3 cable

 

Hardware pictures:

 

Installation steps:

First step was to install the Nvidia web driver for 10.13.5 [17F77]. If there's no matching drivers for macOS version (beta builds) I typically use Benjamin Dobell's script. Once I rebooted and confirmed Nvidia web drivers can load and set as default, it's time to install the EFI boot loader for Nvidia eGPU. The latest beta version from @goalque allows for installation to either an external media (USB stick) or an internal volume such as EFI partition. I opted for an external USB stick to keep my rEFInd setup intact.

Macs with AMD dGPU have framebuffer conflicts so the internal display may go black under certain scenarios. One example is when I ran Unigine benchmarks on an external monitor, the internal display went black. Once I quit out of Unigine, the internal display came back.

 

Benchmarks:

I ran Geekbench 4.1 without an external monitor attached. The Unigine benchmarks were through an external monitor.

 

 

Comments:

This STRIX GTX 1080 Ti pairs very well with the ASUS XG Station Pro. During idle and light work load, no fans were running on either the graphics card or enclosure. During heavy load, it's barely audible. The RGB can be controlled/synced in Windows with AURA Light Utility. Last but not least, the 330W AC adapter can definitely power GTX 1080 Ti without issues.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

84 external GPU build guides


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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
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Ningauble77
(@ningauble77)
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June 22, 2018 4:07 pm  

Looking forward to the public release of this workaround.  My setup is similar enough (MBPro 15 2016, GTX1080, Razer Core v2) that I am hoping this is a viable method to get my egpu working in MacOS again.  With Fre4k's script I could get CUDA working but no OpenGl/OpenCL/Metal and no external Monitor Display.

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.


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fireNice
(@firenice)
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Posts: 8
August 19, 2018 11:19 pm  

@itsage has this workaround been released yet? I'm thinking about using a 2016 mbp-touchbar with Station Pro+Founders 1070.

thanks for your hardwork.

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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Posts: 1497
August 19, 2018 11:42 pm  

@firenice Yes, EFI workaround is available. purge-wrangler should do the trick as well.

purge-wrangler.shpurge-nvda.shset-eGPU.sh
----
Troubleshooting eGPUs on macOS
Command Line Swiss Knife
----
Multiple Build Guides


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fireNice
(@firenice)
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Posts: 8
August 20, 2018 11:29 pm  
Posted by: mac_editor

@firenice Yes, EFI workaround is available. purge-wrangler should do the trick as well.

I noticed on the purge-wrangler page it states this-
"PurgeWrangler enables the following: eGPUs on Thunderbolt 1 & 2 Macs". 

This should not be a problem for TB3 on late 2016 as well? Or should I consider EFI workaround instead?  Which would be a safe bet to go through?

thanks again @mac_editor

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.


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mac_editor
(@mac_editor)
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August 20, 2018 11:31 pm  

@firenice No worries. The article is just listing what the script is adding as capability. Both use the same patches. EFI solution recommends booting with pen drive, while purge-wrangler directly modifies system files. It’s your call. 

purge-wrangler.shpurge-nvda.shset-eGPU.sh
----
Troubleshooting eGPUs on macOS
Command Line Swiss Knife
----
Multiple Build Guides


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fireNice
(@firenice)
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Posts: 8
August 21, 2018 12:28 am  
Posted by: mac_editor

@firenice No worries. The article is just listing what the script is adding as capability. Both use the same patches. EFI solution recommends booting with pen drive, while purge-wrangler directly modifies system files. It’s your call. 

Sometimes I'd like to edit on the go without an external monitor. How much of a performance boost can I expect from egpu(founders 1070) vs internal 460(amd)?

thanks @mac_editor

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.


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theitsage
(@itsage)
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November 4, 2018 4:08 pm  

A quick update on this pairing now that @goalque has released 1.0.5 eGPU EFI boot loader. I used Disk Utility to create a 256MB FAT partition on the internal drive then copy the EFI folder into it. This eliminates the needs for an external USB thumb drive. My 2016 15" MacBook Pro has no "Large Memory" allocation in Boot Camp so I copied the precompiled dsdt.aml into eGPU boot volume > EFI > CLOVER > ACPI > WINDOWS.

The PCI Express x16 Controller 1901 to the Radeon Pro 450 dGPU is disabled on a permanent basis now. I can switch back and forth between macOS and Windows without the needs to reattach internal display to dGPU in Windows. The eGPU EFI boot manager not only activates the iGPU but also facilitates internal display attachment during Windows boot. All four Thunderbolt 3 ports remain enabled and functional in Windows 10. Hot-unplug does not result in BSOD. The GTX 1080 Ti eGPU can connect to any of the four Thunderbolt 3 ports. It needs to be connected prior to boot though.

This eGPU EFI boot loader is now the single solution for both macOS and Windows. Nvidia eGPU in 10.14 should work once Nvidia and Apple sort out their dispute and release web drivers.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

84 external GPU build guides


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OliverB
(@oliverb)
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November 4, 2018 4:29 pm  

I had ordered 4 different eGPU enclosures (Aorus Gaming Box 1080, Asus XP Station Pro, Razer Core X, Razer Core V2) and I kept the Asus XP Station Pro. I even canceled the Razer Core V2 before arriving as I was already happy. Except for the PD-Problem, it's reall a good piece of hardwaare.

macbook-pro-15-2018-i7-asus-xg-station-pro-evga-gtx-1080-ti
early-2015-13-macbook-pro-gtx1080ti-11gb16gbps-tb2-asus-xg-station-pro-via-tb3-tb2-adapter-macos-10-13-6
macbook-pro-15-2018-i7-razer-core-x-evga-gtx-1080-ti-2
macbook-pro-15inch-2018-aorus-gaming-box-gtx1080


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theitsage
(@itsage)
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November 4, 2018 4:34 pm  

@oliverb I agree it's a very nice enclosure. Paired with a silent-mode capable GPU, this is the quietest eGPU solution currently on the market. Too bad there's no Power Delivery.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

84 external GPU build guides


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OliverB
(@oliverb)
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Posts: 136
November 4, 2018 5:10 pm  
Posted by: theitsage

@oliverb I agree it's a very nice enclosure. Paired with a silent-mode capable GPU, this is the quietest eGPU solution currently on the market. Too bad there's no Power Delivery.

The Power Delivery was almost a show stopper for me. It's the only problem with the enclosure, ok, it's a second cable now. The alternatives with sufficient PD weren't exciting (GamingBox: Very loud and no uprade possible, Razer Core X: Loud , huge and no ports).
As I wrote in my build post, another problem theoretically could be the 300 Watt limit, but not for the 1080 Ti.. so what?

macbook-pro-15-2018-i7-asus-xg-station-pro-evga-gtx-1080-ti
early-2015-13-macbook-pro-gtx1080ti-11gb16gbps-tb2-asus-xg-station-pro-via-tb3-tb2-adapter-macos-10-13-6
macbook-pro-15-2018-i7-razer-core-x-evga-gtx-1080-ti-2
macbook-pro-15inch-2018-aorus-gaming-box-gtx1080


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