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2018 15" Macbook Pro (RP555) [8th,6C,H] + RX 580 [email protected] (VisionTek Mini e...
 

2018 15" Macbook Pro (RP555) [8th,6C,H] + RX 580 [email protected] (VisionTek Mini eGFX) + macOS 10.14.4 & Win10 1809 [itsage]  

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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 3 years ago
 

Following the VisionTek Mini eGFX review, I'm testing it with different configurations. The power port of this enclosure is a standard 6-pin PCIe receptacle so I thought using a capable power supply I could run multiple eGPUs. I gave it a shot powering two Mini eGFXs with the Enermax 650W SFX power supply. Everything worked great in both macOS and Windows 10.

 

System specs:

2018 15" MacBook Pro - i7-8750H/Iris 630 iGPU & Radeon Pro 555X dGPU/16GB RAM/256GB SSD

 

eGPU hardware:

2x VisionTek Mini eGFXs + Enermax SFX 650W SFX PSU + RX 570 8GB & RX 580 4GB + 2x .5m Thunderbolt 3 cables

 

Hardware pictures:

 

Installation steps:

In order to use a SFX power supply to power the VisionTek Mini eGFX, I jump-started the ATX cable. Once this is done, it's plug-and-play in macOS 10.14.4 Beta. Both eGPUs could run through hot-plugging simultaneously, one after another, or connected prior to boot. I noticed macOS will use the eGPUs in the order of receptacle number. Receptacle #1 is right front TB3 port, #2 is right rear TB3 port, #3 is left front TB3 port, and #4 is left rear TB3 port.

In Windows Boot Camp, I didn't use any boot loader solutions. BootCampdrivers.com modified 19.2.1 drivers or newer are necessary to run the Radeon Pro dGPU alongside the AMD RX eGPUs. Here's the setup and usage procedure.

  • Install Windows 10 via Boot Camp Assistant and complete Apple driver installation.
  • Download modified Radeon drivers from Bootcampdrivers.com.
  • Run DDU (included in modified drivers) to remove Apple Radeon drivers.
  • Disable Windows auto-installation of new devices then install modified Radeon drivers.
  • Restart MBP after Radeon driver installation completes but do not connect AMD eGPU.
  • Hot-plug AMD eGPUs once MBP boots to the Windows Desktop.
  • Open Device Manager and locate the AMD eGPUs (should be yellow-banged by error 12 at this point).
  • Go to Devices by Connection then right-click the AMD eGPUs to Uninstall.
  • Leave the AMD eGPUs connected and restart the MBP.

If all goes according to plan the next boot should have both AMD eGPUs and AMD dGPU working as well as the internal display. This procedure (last four steps) requires one restart in Windows to get AMD eGPUs and internal display going.

Funny enough the order of eGPU used in Windows is opposite that of macOS. The left Thunderbolt 3 ports attach to PCIe Controller 1905 and being initialized and used first. With Large Memory allocation there was no error 12 even with two AMD eGPUs.

 

Benchmarks:

In order to accelerate the internal display with the eGPU, I manually assigned apps/games to use Performance GPU in Windows Graphics Options. The RX 570 8GB VisionTek Mini eGFX was connected to the left front TB3 port so it was chosen by Windows as the Performance GPU. Here are Unigine benchmarks comparing internal display mode vs external monitor mode.

Internal Display External Monitor

Here are 3DMark results through direct external monitor mode.

 

Comments:

We see optimized drivers and direct TB3 to CPU in this MBP making internal display and external monitor performance of the RX 570 eGPU identical. I also noticed VRAM amount effects performance significantly in Final Cut Pro X. Running BruceX in FCP 10.4.5 took 19 seconds with the RX 570 8GB, but took 28 seconds with RX 580 4GB. The 2018 15" MacBook Pro's Radeon Pro 555x dGPU took 39 seconds to complete BruceX.

This topic was modified 4 months ago

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

109 external GPU build guides


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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
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Joined: 2 years ago
 

So if I am reading this right internal vs external performance is pretty much the same give or take a couple of %? Far off from the 30% loss sometimes quoted places? Males me question the need to directly power my LG 5K Ultrafine if so....

2017 13" MacBook Pro Touch Bar
GTX1060 + AKiTiO Thunder3 + Win10
GTX1070 + Sonnet Breakaway Box + Win10
GTX1070 + Razer Core V1 + Win10
Vega 56 + Razer Core V1 + macOS + Win10
Vega 56 + Mantiz Venus + macOS + W10

---

LG 5K Ultrafine flickering issue fix


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itsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 3 years ago
 

@eightarmedpet Yes I found AMD drivers are very well optimized in Windows for external graphics use. Loopback vs external monitor shows single digit difference consistently in the past year with different Mac laptops. I will be doing a build using RX Vega Nano Edition + 2017 13" MacBook Pro shortly.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

109 external GPU build guides


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joevt
(@joevt)
Reputable Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 
Posted by: Eightarmedpet

So if I am reading this right internal vs external performance is pretty much the same give or take a couple of %? Far off from the 30% loss sometimes quoted places? Males me question the need to directly power my LG 5K Ultrafine if so....

The resolution used in the tests was only 1920 x 1080. Performance drops with higher resolutions. 5K requires 7.1 times the bandwidth than 1080p.

Also, the tests were run in Windows. macOS might give different results?

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts


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tsakal
(@tsakal)
Estimable Member
Joined: 10 months ago
 

@itsage
Is it the vega 56 with the gaming box ????

I cannot wait. When do you expect to be ready?
Best

A. 2.7 GHz I7 4 Cores, 16Gb, 1TB MBP 13 2018 TB3 , EGPU Gigabyte Gaming Box RX580 8Gb

B. 3.1 GHz I7, 16Gb, 1TB MBP 13 2015 TB2 , EGPU Gigabyte Gaming Box RX580 8Gb


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itsage
(@itsage)
Famed Member Admin
Joined: 3 years ago
 

@tsakal Yes, the Vega Nano is currently installed in the Gaming Box. This enclosure has a lowered H2D firmware so I will flash it to the full speed firmware prior to running tests. No issues with fitment or power up at all. I simply added a 6-pin to dual 6+2-pin PCIe power adapter and it started right up.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

109 external GPU build guides


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tsakal
(@tsakal)
Estimable Member
Joined: 10 months ago
 

@itsage

Thank you, looking forward to it. 

The only issue i would expect is the lack of full power due to the 450w psu . However, if you power the laptop through the apple power adaptor it should be able to get all the power it needs.

A. 2.7 GHz I7 4 Cores, 16Gb, 1TB MBP 13 2018 TB3 , EGPU Gigabyte Gaming Box RX580 8Gb

B. 3.1 GHz I7, 16Gb, 1TB MBP 13 2015 TB2 , EGPU Gigabyte Gaming Box RX580 8Gb


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