2013 15" Lenovo T540p + [email protected] (EXP GDC 8.x) + Win10 [batist]^  

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batist
(@batist)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
February 16, 2017 9:48 am  

Hi guys,

I've recently finished my eGPU setup and I want to share details about the process.

 

Hardware:

- Lenovo Thinkpad T540p

- CPU: Intel® Core™ i7-4900MQ, 2.80GHz (3.80GHz turbo)

- Memory: 2x8GB DDR3 1600Mhz

- iGPU: Intel® HD Graphics 4600

- dGPU: none

- eGPU: MSI GeForce GTX680 Twin Frozr 2GB

- eGPU dock: EXP GDC v8.0, Expresscard interface

- screen: NEC E231W

 

Software:

- Win10 x64 (dualboot with Fedora 25)

- eGPU Setup 1.35

 

Details

I have to take my laptop with me daily so my choice was expresscard interface, because I can just unplug expresscard and take laptop with me. With Mini PCI-E it wouldn't be so easy.

After unpacking and connecting my new EXP GDC, I had an issue with black screens. Both laptop and external screen remained black, so I had to have switch PTD to 7s to avoid race condition. My BIOS must not see the eGPU otherwise it ends with black screen.

So after having PTD 7s I was able to see laptop screen working and I was able to boot successfully to win10. Windows Device Manager was able to detect my GTX680 but there was code 12 error: cannot allocate resources and external monitor remained black. So I was googling a bit and found great guide here ( https://egpu.io/forums/pc-setup/fix-dsdt-override-to-correct-error-12 ). My TOLUD is 3.5GB and I definitely didn't want to go down with my RAM so I've followed the guide to allow 36-bit addressing to host my eGPU.

In the guide I've tried both intel and microsoft method in step 1. But only microsoft method works for me. Intel method ended with ACPI BIOS ERROR during booting windows. Microsoft method was the hardest part for me to resolve all compile errors. There nando4 really helped me, thank you.

There are changes to my dsdt-modified.asl what had to be done:

Original line(s) Changed to
GNOT
0x2
0x0
GNOT (0x02, 0x00)
GDCK
Arg0
GDCK (Arg0)
ATMC() \_SB_.PCI0.LPC_.EC__.ATMC()
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.GLIS
0x0
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.GLIS (0x0)
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.GLIS
0x1
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.GLIS (0x1)
Or(Local1, ShiftLeft(Local2, 0x9, ), Local2)
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.AINT
0x3
Local2Store(DerefOf(Index(DerefOf(Index(BRTB, Local3, )), Local0, )), Local2)
\_SB_.PCI0.VID_.AINT
0x1
Local2
Local2 = (Local1 | (Local2 << 0x09))
\_SB.PCI0.VID.AINT (0x03, Local2)
Local2 = DerefOf (DerefOf (BRTB [Local3]) [Local0])
\_SB.PCI0.VID.AINT (0x01, Local2)

 

In step 2 I went with OPTION 2: Load your dsdt-modified.aml as an in memory DSDT substitution. I have MBR mode partitions so it was easy to paste my dsdt-modified.aml to v:\config\dsdt.aml and then I had to use Setup 1.35 to force allocate the eGPU with following steps:

-Boot Setup 1.35 -> menu-based

-Select PCI compaction->Endpoint=56.25GB (36-bit)

-Select PCI compaction->Run compact. When prompted for the scope select eGPU.

Since then my setup works fine except one thing: hot restarts. When I do cold start up PTD 7s works fine but with hot restart obviously doesn't, my BIOS sees my eGPU and all screens remains black, so I have to go with shut down -> start up rather than restart. But I can live with that.

The next step will be to make/buy some box where I can put my eGPU and ATX. Right now I have these unpacked on the table and it is not so practical. 

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1815
February 16, 2017 10:02 am  

Hey @Batist, thank you for your implementation guide. One thing I'm curious about, is your EXP GDC 8.x stable with a Gen2 link?

To confirm it's running Gen2 run GPU-Z and observe the "Bus Interface" item while putting the eGPU under load such as NVidia Control Panel->Adjust image (NVidia Logo spinning).

An unreliable Gen2 link will result in "NVidia Driver has stopped responding" hiccups, requiring a switch to Gen1 (via BIOS option if available or Setup 1.35) to correct.

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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batist
(@batist)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
February 16, 2017 10:30 am  

edit: wrongly pasted comment

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Posts: 1815
February 16, 2017 11:01 am  
Posted by: batist

 Hi Nando, AFAIK Gen2 link is working fine in my environment, I've played Wither 3 for ca. 20h and so far so good, no crashes no freezes. I'll try to check GPU-Z and to load my eGPU by NVidia Control Panel as you suggested. I'll let you know how it goes.

   

If it is running Gen2 successful, can you take some detailed photos of your eGPU adapter version? Would like some sample to look at for Gen2 reliability. I've otherwise been suggesting users buy a pricier PE4C-EC060A with soldered cable to get greatest Gen2 reliability.

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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batist
(@batist)
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Posts: 5
February 17, 2017 8:17 am  
Posted by: nando4

If it is running Gen2 successful, can you take some detailed photos of your eGPU adapter version? Would like some sample to look at for Gen2 reliability. I've otherwise been suggesting users buy a pricier PE4C-EC060A with soldered cable to get greatest Gen2 reliability.

Hi @nando4, I was trying do the test you asked for and I have some difficulties. In CPU-Z  I cannot see "Bus Interface" item. 

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Posts: 1815
February 17, 2017 8:27 am  

Pls use GPU-Z rather than CPU-Z to check the eGPU bus interface.

 

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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batist
(@batist)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
February 17, 2017 9:30 am  

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Posts: 1815
February 17, 2017 9:46 am  

Nice.. it's a Gen2 link. Is it stable under hours long use? Would you mind posting close up photos of it too? Would like a reference for which EXP GDC adapter version to get for reliable Gen2 operation.

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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batist
(@batist)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 5
February 20, 2017 8:39 am  

Sure, as I wrote I've played Wither 3 for 30 hours and I haven't seen any issues so far. There is a picture of my EXP GDC BEAST V8.4d.

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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WolfFX
(@wolffx)
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Posts: 2
March 28, 2017 12:59 am  

@batist, could you tell me where you bought your kit?

I'm confused with EXP GDC Beast kits, because I can't find any stores saying it is version 8.4d, only 8.0. 
I'd assume the newer hardware has a better chance of being stable... and since the soldered options are now 160+ USD, I'm searching for the Beast kit 🙂

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Posts: 1815
March 28, 2017 3:05 am  
Posted by: WolfFX

 

@batist, could you tell me where you bought your kit?

I'm confused with EXP GDC Beast kits, because I can't find any stores saying it is version 8.4d, only 8.0. 
I'd assume the newer hardware has a better chance of being stable... and since the soldered options are now 160+ USD, I'm searching for the Beast kit 🙂

   

The EXP GDC 8.4x kits are available from gearbest and banggood.com. The soldered cable PE4C 3.0 can be had for US$98 linked from eGPU.io's buyer's guide: https://egpu.io/external-gpu-buyers-guide-2017/#expresscard2-interface

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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OnABudget
(@onabudget)
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Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 10
June 22, 2017 3:58 am  

I want to also use an expresscard (with 1050 ti) but the thing that confuses me is the bandwidth speed which is at 4Gbps. I looked up the specs for the gtx 680 and the bandwidth speed was at 6Gbps. So are you getting 2/3 the performance? I feel like this is a naive way of thinking but I want to truly understand it.

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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June 22, 2017 4:05 am  

@OnABudget, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express#PCI_Express_2.0 explains this:

PCI Express 2.0

Like 1.x, PCIe 2.0 uses an 8b/10b encoding scheme, therefore delivering, per-lane, an effective 4 Gbit/s max transfer rate from its 5 GT/s raw data rate.

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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OnABudget
(@onabudget)
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Posts: 10
June 22, 2017 4:33 am  

Thanks for the quick reply, alright I think I get it. So on Batist's image with his GPU-Z info, he has a bus interface capable of transferring at 2.0 x16 (500MB)*16(Lanes) = 8GBps which is also 64Gbps (max transfer rate), but he is running @ 1(lane) * 500(MBps) = .5GBps which is also 4Gbps (max transfer rate) which would be the ExpressCard's max speed.

So the image I attached has the memory specs for the GTX 680 which can transfer at 6Gbps does this mean missing out on some performance or there is no difference?

 

 

EDIT: Does the mPCI-e slot we use when replacing wifi chip only go up to 2.0x1? (which would be the same as an expresscard)

 

EDIT 2: I know all I need to know looking up some more stuff thanks for opening the door for lil' o' me

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 37
July 8, 2017 7:25 pm  

Hi Batist, did you finaly identify the "original" issue with the 540p? I'm trying with an GTX970, and for the moment , black screen, with or without 7s delay, new/olders geforce.

If I plug express card manualy, system recognize it but not the screen / geforce drivers.

I have bought"DIY eGPU setup".

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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nando4
(@nando4)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1815
July 8, 2017 7:35 pm  
Posted by: tygpu

Hi Batist, did you finaly identify the "original" issue with the 540p? I'm trying with an GTX970, and for the moment , black screen, with or without 7s delay, new/olders geforce.

If I plug express card manualy, system recognize it but not the screen / geforce drivers.

I have bought"DIY eGPU setup".

with reference to the EXP GDC switches:

As the delay switch isn't working for you, proceed to set the switches as:

- disable the delay on the EXP GDC PTD switch (far right)
- enable the PSU to be permanently on (ATX PWR far left)

Then boot the system with these steps:

1. disconnect the EC adapter *or* the HDMI cable that runs between the EC adapter and EXP GDC
2. poweron the notebook
3. boot into Setup 1.35 -> menu-based. Hit F5 to rescan the system which will loop for a few mins trying to detect the eGPU
4. Plug in the EC adapter or HDMI cable (test both).
5. Select Chainloader->test run, boot into Windows, install Geforce drivers.
6. Reboot system using same steps as above, check eGPU status (eg: working or error 12) and deal with appropriately.

If still need further help here, then please contact me via email. I provide offline Setup 1.35 support.

 

eGPU Setup 1.35    •    eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference Table    •    Several builds
2015 15" Dell Precision 7510 M1000M + macOS 10.14 & Win10


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Posts: 37
July 9, 2017 9:24 am  

OK thanks nando4! I will answer via mail.

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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bwerkman17
(@bwerkman17)
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Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 2
July 12, 2017 4:46 pm  

I'm having the same issue with the ATMC() on my X230. Exactly which line do you need to change? I used Ctrl+F to search for it but I got 5 results. Should I change the one above the buffer values that were changed?

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Posts: 37
July 12, 2017 7:07 pm  

I have finally succeed in charge batist .aml via DIY eGPU setup! No more error 12!:)

For the exact change, batist had created a table, I don't know if it is compatible with x230.  For the buffer value, compare with your asl file.

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Posts: 37
July 13, 2017 7:33 am  

Bad news!, I let the installation of the witcher3 run last night... The notebook was "asleep" this morning, I unplug expresscard , reboot and replug it just before prompt to boot with "DIY eGPU setup". I have a few BSOD with this error code : "VIDEO TDR FAILURE"

I have tried the two complementary steps (but too late perhaps?)

"-Select PCI compaction->Endpoint=56.25GB (36-bit)

-Select PCI compaction->Run compact. When prompted for the scope select eGPU."

After a few other tests, I'm now back to error 12! And windows don't see the egpu !! 🙁

Subsidiary question, I have an unidentified peripheral devices "ACPI\VEN_INT&DEV_INT33A0" , I don't know if it's appeared before/after I try to play with this egpu settings! 🙂

And a little (and perhaps "strange") second one! When you active PTD  on the "exp gdc beast", you don't have to let ATX PWR on ?

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Posts: 37
July 18, 2017 7:29 pm  

Hello, here are the news!!

The Egpu works well but with PCIe set at 1.1, my first benchmark are lower than with the T530 but better and more stable in PCI 1.1 . I have done this setting via "DIY eGPU setup v1.35" and Nando4 advices! 🙂

I have finally reinstalled all setup from start whitout "complementary step". And just set PCIe to gen1 after a few error "VIDEO TDR FAILURE" often associated to nvlddmkm.sys  or dxgkrnl errors.

here is a first Firestrike 1.1 benchmark :

 

Unigine heaven :

 

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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tygpu
(@tygpu)
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Posts: 37
July 22, 2017 5:34 am  

I have succeeded to run another benchmark with PCIe GEN2 settings, it's about 15% better, if someone know a better bench to test the PCIe load?

Nando talks me about EM interferences linked to the quality of the "hdmi"/EC cable of the Exp GDC 8.4. I could not test the "ferrite beads" as described here :

 
I ask me if the T540p is particularly in cause? I had no problem with T530 with same configuration.
Another remark, it seems that usage of  an external usb3 dock for hdd increase the issue.
 

 

 

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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Merkaber
(@merkaber)
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August 24, 2018 3:00 pm  

I am new to the topic of an eGPU. I got an T540p and now I am wondering if the issues explained here are just specifically related to the setup with an express card to the T540p. I got a GTX 980 and need to get the best performance. I just want to take it with me when I travel, so it doesn't matter if I have to screw some parts apart. So with the best setup, what rate of performance can I expect?

Soon I will add my system & eGPU details or a build link to this my signature to give context to my posts


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