2016 15" Macbook Pro RP460 + [email protected] (AKiTiO Node) + macOS10.12.3&Win10 [achetnik]^ //LG Ultrafine 5K monitor  

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achetnik
(@achetnik)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 12
February 21, 2017 12:09 pm  

After spending 5 days trying to get it to work I am pleased to confirm I have the below setup working in MacOS and Windows:

  • 2016 15" Macbook Pro with RX 460 (16GB RAM) running 10.12.3 & Windows 10 Pro in Bootcamp
  • Akitio NODE with the latest firmware
  • MSI GTX 980 Gaming X 4GB
  • LG Ultrafine 5K Monitor
  • Fit Headless GS Adaptor

 

This was my process to get it working (Windows):

  • Install a fresh copy of Windows 10 Pro (using Bootcamp Assistant)
  • Install the Bootcamp drivers (again using Bootcamp Assistant)
  • Install the Intel Thunderbolt drivers
  • Update the Firmware on the NODE if not already done so (must be done before trying to setup in MacOS)
  • Configure the standard DSDT Override and TESTSIGNING mode ON
  • Restart
  • Confirm Large Memory within Device Manager - Resources
  • Hot Plug eGPU
  • Install the Nvidia Drivers
  • Shut down
  • Disconnect eGPU
  • Boot Windows
  • Remove all of the devices in Device Manager - Resources using the large memory space (All of the ones with a blue icon - not the USB icon one!)
  • Hot Plug the eGPU (Within a few minutes the eGPU will be usable without error 12 and the other devices will also come back and start working again)
  • Everything should work

 

This was my process to get it working (MacOS): - NOTE: Ensure NODE firmware is updated first (see above - has to be done in Windows)

  • Connect the eGPU before booting into MacOS (MacOS cannot hot plug the eGPU)
  • Run the Automate-GPU script (which will also install the drivers)
  • Reboot
  • All should be working on next boot (may need to set the primary monitor to use the eGPU either using a monitor attached to the eGPU or a Fit Headles adaptor)

 

NOTE: Heaven lies to you! Following the successful setups above, on both MacOS and Windows I ran Heaven to be told Heaven was running on the GTX 980 however I was getting vey slow FPS results. Heaven reports which GPU it is using in the top right hand corner however this appears to be incorrect. Once the primary display was set and the application was launched on the correct monitor, Heaven still reports the same GPU but much, much better FPS results.

NOTE: Using the Windows setup above, I have connected the Fit Headless GS adaptor to the HDMI socket on my eGPU to activate the eGPU as I have no monitor connected to it. I then connected the LG Ultrafine 5K display to the MacBook Pro using the TB3 connection. I made the Fit Headless the primary monitor display and setup the Dual Monitor tools app. This means any new launched apps will load on the Fit Headless ie the eGPU, then using a keyboard shortcut I can move the apps from that adaptor to the LG 5K monitor keeping the app running on the eGPU. Resulting in the dGPU RX 460 running the 5K display but the eGPU: GTX 980 running the game/app.  (I tried disabling the dGPU: RX 480 before the above to try and force the eGPU for all monitors however this deactivates the LG 5k monitor) LINK.  I also used a similar setup on MacOS.

CREDIT to those who made this possible: nando4, goalgue, theitsage, AVT, enjoy 

Not sure how I can add this to the implementations table?

Screenshot attached of running Heaven using Extreme preset, on Windows 10 using GTX 980.

Additional info: I did all of the same with a MSI RX 480 8GB Gaming X Card. In Windows it would not work at all, in MacOS it was found but no acceleration.

EDIT: GPU-Z is a great Windows tool to ensure the eGPU is being used (Sensors): https://www.techpowerup.com/gpuz/

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


goalque, theitsage and nando4 liked
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Mehenn
(@mehenn)
Estimable Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 103
February 21, 2017 1:16 pm  

Nice that you managed to make it work! The score on Heaven seems kinda low (I will try it myself home) because I got 2200++ on 1080p 8xAA on Valley. 

Also its curious why you could not run the AMD on MacOS... I mean the scores a way lower than the nVidia chipsets (1600++ for a RX 480) but should run...


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + [email protected] (TB3 to TB2 adapter) (AKiTiO Thunder2) + macOS 10.12.3
late-2016 13" MBP + Quadro M2000/FirePro WX5100/GTX750-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + macOS 10.12.3
(Custom Thunder cables)


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theitsage
(@itsage)
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Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 3227
February 21, 2017 2:14 pm  

@achetnik great work! Very interesting the RX 460 would power the 5K display and let the eGPU do the heavy lifting. Nando added your setup to the Implementations table.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide

86 external GPU build guides


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danfalconar
(@danfalconar)
Estimable Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 159
February 25, 2017 9:38 am  

My solution for my late 2016 13" MBP+TouchBar + Akitio Node + GeForce GTX 980 TI, similar to @achetnik's solution but with a few extra steps: 

  • Got the eGPU working in MacOS without any problems using the well documented automate_eGPU.sh method
  • Installed rEFInd so that I have a nice boot selection menu (see this post for details)
  • Created a "startup.nsh" script that does the "VGA enable" fix (see this post for details). Note that if I don't use this fix then I get a blue screen of death (BSOD), so for my setup at least it seems a necessary step.
  • Install a fresh copy of Windows 10 Home (using Bootcamp Assistant)
  • Install the Bootcamp drivers (again using Bootcamp Assistant)
  • Using rEFInd I've chained apple_set_os.efi into the boot process (see this post for details) so that I can boot with the eGPU plugged in, which prevents Windows from hanging on startup. 
  • Install the Intel Thunderbolt driversI didn't do this explicitly
  • Update the Firmware on the NODE if not already done so (must be done before trying to setup in MacOS)I didn't do this explicitly because I got an error message saying "Thunderbolt (TM) Service Does Not Exist"
  • Install the Nvidia Drivers - Done
  • Configure the standard DSDT Override and TESTSIGNING mode ON - Done
  • Restart
  • Confirm Large Memory within Device Manager
  • Run bcdedit.exe -set PCIEXPRESS FORCEDISABLE in an admin command prompt.
  • Hot Plug eGPU in top right TB3 port (I can't get it to work in any other port, I'd done all steps up to here using one of the left hand TB3 ports), wait for BSOD and auto-reboot
  • Shut downThe BSOD did this for me
  • Disconnect eGPUNo need, I have the apple_set_os.efi fix (see this post)
  • Boot Windows
  • Remove all of the devices in Device Manager - Resources using the large memory space (All of the ones with a blue icon - not the USB icon one!) -  I didn't need to do this
  • Hot Plug the eGPU (Within a few minutes the eGPU will be usable without error 12 and the other devices will also come back and start working again) - I didn't need to do this
  • When Windows restarted after its BSOD the external screen came to life, yipee!

Please note that there was a lot of trial/error in the above steps. It's possible that one or more of them were not necessary (I really hope for anyone else's sake that the DSDT override isn't necessary, as that's a pain... but I think it is).

 

 

Edit: Got it working at last, amended the post to reflect all the things that I did, based on the OP's list.

late-2017 27" iMac Pro RPVega64 + [email protected] (AKiTiO Node) + MacOS 10.13.2
late-2014 27" iMac 5k R9 M295X + [email protected] (AKiTiO Node via TB3->TB2 adapter) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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DBL R
(@dbl-r)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 8
March 11, 2017 4:02 am  

I can confirm that achetnik's method works. I will say that using the internal monitor with this setup has about 50% or so reduction in overall frame rates. 

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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briax
(@briax)
New Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 1
March 21, 2017 11:58 pm  

Hi,

First of all, awesome work 🙂

I have a question regarding the egpu setup.

Lets say you're in OS X and want to launch a game, WoW. How do you trigger said game to utilize the GPU and not the 460?

Thanks!

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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achetnik
(@achetnik)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 12
March 22, 2017 8:57 am  

You would need to ensure the Active/Primary monitor is running on the E-GPU Card and launch the app on that monitor.

Then you can move it to a different screen.

I do the same thing in Windows, see above.

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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chocomonsters
(@chocomonsters)
Eminent Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 39
March 24, 2017 2:51 am  

@achetnik,

Which Intel Thunderbolt drivers did you use?

Tks,

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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achetnik
(@achetnik)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 12
March 29, 2017 8:58 am  

http://drivers.softpedia.com/get/MOTHERBOARD/Intel/ASRock-Z270-SuperCarrier-Intel-Thunderbolt-Driver-16-2-52-250.shtml#download

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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JonnieCache
(@jonniecache)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 16
April 14, 2017 1:24 am  

Could you take a look at my post here? For now, I'm just trying to get it working on the Mac side. I have this weird extra VGA Display that shows up when I use my LG 5k. Also, what resolution settings are you using on the LG versus the fake monitor?

Thanks!

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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silvioalessi
(@silvioalessi)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 18
May 17, 2017 2:05 pm  

I have the same MacBook Pro RP460 with a GTX1080, not Ti. In MacOs, when I use an intense graphic app, like heaven benchmark,  after quitting app, Intel HD 530 disappear from about this Mac window, and the Mac LCD looses its graphics acceleration, only workaround is to logout-login again. Anybody has this behavior ? With my old MacBook 13-inch early 2015 this bug did not happens. Another problem with this setup is that FCP X 10.3.3 open and unexpected quits, with MacBook 13-inch early 2015 FCP X works perfectly.

Upgraded AKITiO Node with 450W SFX PSU + NOCTUA NF-S12A fan + ATX on switch


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frustatedEGPUer
(@frustatedegpuer)
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 12
May 24, 2017 11:33 pm  

If you disable testsigning to get rid of that watermark does it still work?

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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kragiosplooch
(@kragiosplooch)
Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago
Posts: 8
July 8, 2017 2:02 pm  

If I do not wish to use the eGPU in OS X, do I still have to update the Akitio Node firmware?

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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