2017 15" MacBook Pro (RP560) [7th,4C,H] + GTX 1080 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + Win10 [dbuckingham]
- Mid-2017 15" MacBook Pro with Radeon Pro 560 and 3.1GHz i7
- Windows 10 v1709 (Fall Creator's Update)
Just to be clear, I take no responsibility if you harm your system while using this guide.
- Create a Windows 10 Boot Camp partition using Boot Camp Assistant on MacOS (I am running MacOS High Sierra 10.13.2). I used the Windows 10 Fall Creator's Update ISO from the Microsoft website. I also ran Apple Software update in Windows after the installation.
- Note: I originally had the Anniversary Edition (v1703), but wanted to update to 1709 to use some programs that require it. Windows Update did not say that I had an update to 1709 ready, so I downloaded the v1709 installer and ran it. I would suggest NOT doing this. The installation failed. It automatically reverted back to v1703 without issue. However, I found that the process created a recovery partition on my hard drive. The presence of this partition prevents Boot Camp assistant from running, including to remove the Boot Camp partition. I had to manually remove my entire Windows partition using diskutil on the Mac command line with some guidance from the Boot Camp section of the Apple forums (Note that the partition itself still worked fine, it just could no longer removed using Boot Camp assistant). I then created a new partition with 1709 (and hit another issue where my computer couldn't partition the hard drive, resolved by colinbenson's response in this thread on the Apple forums) and started from scratch.
- I would also consider some Boot Camp backup software like Winclone and/or making a NTFS partition on an external drive to use Window's native backup utility.
- Install the graphics card in the Mantiz Venus
- Not sure how necessary it is, but I used a grounding bracelet attached to the plugged-in (but turned-off) Venus.
- Take out card holder and side panel from Venus.
- Plug power into card first, then put card holder back, then place card into PCIe slot (otherwise power cords will be unreachable behind the card and card holder will hit card and not fit in when you try to put it back in from the outside of the box).
- Screw card bracket down with the two small black screws (they go through the card holder, may need to push card from inside the box a bit to make sure holes are exposed). Then screw in card holder by hand, put side panel back on.
- Disable automatic installation of drivers in Windows 10
- Settings > Advanced system settings (search for it) > Hardware > Device Installation Settings > No > Save Changes (I turned this back on after setting up).
- Turn computer off. Plug in any devices you intend to use alongside the eGPU (I originally tried to plug in a mouse after booting with the eGPU and crashed. I have been plugging into MacBook itself through an adapter, have yet to try Venus IO). Plug Venus into wall socket, connect monitor and MacBook to Venus (I used the top right Thunderbolt port on my MacBook, closest to the power/Siri button).
- Turn on the Venus. This caused my computer to turn on as well. Boot into Windows.
- Download and install drivers from EVGA website (or your card's brand). I did a custom install and chose only the drivers themselves and the PhysX software. Reboot when prompted.
- At this point you should be good. I plan on shutting down my computer before unplugging anything/plugging anything in, and unplugging the eGPU before booting back into MacOS.
For running on the internal display:
- I used the fit-Headless GS, as I did not want to bother with apple_set_os and gpu_switch, and wanted windowed rather than scaled applications when running on the internal display. You may be able to to get your applications in fullscreen mode or appear to be in fullscreen mode without NVIDIA Optimus, however, the following steps would not apply.
- The major hey here is that the shortcut command-shift-[arrow key] moves the selcted window between monitors, depending on the monitor arrangement in Display Settings and which arrow key you press.
- Boot in same manner as described above, but with the GS plugged in instead of a monitor.
- Open the display settings (right click on desktop and select it). Windows defaulted to display mirroring for me. If it doesn't, I you may have to use the above shortcut to get the window on your internal screen.
- Under "Multiple Displays", choose "Extend these displays". This may cause the display settings window to be "moved" to your GS. Use the shortcut to get it back. Apply the change.
- Select the monitor corresponding to the GS (probably monitor 2) in the display settings. Check "Make this my main display" (so programs are accelerated by the eGPU when launched). This also may make the window move. Apply the change.
- You should now be set. Programs will now generally launch on the GS and have to be moved back to your internal display. I have found that some programs are occasionally finicky with the shortcut. Some, but not all, "remember" being moved and will start on your internal display the next time you launch them. Remember to set applications to launch in windowed mode.
- If you boot to a black screen after this setup, try unplugging the GS, signing into your user account, and plugging it back in.
The following are Unigine Superposition benchmarks using external and internal displays (The external display I used was a 720p TV that I made Windows send 1080p signal to. Not sure if this impacts results). Very similar!
2. Tried 4k gaming on it?
3. Any performance slowdowns compared to how the GPU should perform in a similarly specced PC?
Yes, I didn’t need to do any tricks. I think the lack of tinkering needed also depends on the computer itself, however.
I have not, but it does well with 1440p.
Yes, but only very minor, especially at 1440p.