[Teardown] Late 2020 Mac mini: Apple Silicon M1, Thunderbolt 4, USB4, PCIe 4.0
 
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[Teardown] Late 2020 Mac mini: Apple Silicon M1, Thunderbolt 4, USB4, PCIe 4.0  

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ikir
 ikir
(@ikir)
Prominent Member
Joined: 4 years ago
 
Posted by: @joey_roman
Posted by: @craftsman
Posted by: @joey_roman

So all that is missing to use an eGPU are drivers?

 

I am able to play non AAA games just fine on the MacBook Pro M1.  But it cannot even remotely handle my 38" monitor.  Would be in heaven if I could connect an eGPU.

I have it connected to a 49 inch 4K display and the interface speed is better than the 5700 XT, especially video playback. Rendering in Media Encoder is another story, but not too bad.

Oh, I just meant gaming on my 38” is a no go lol. Everything else works fine. If I want to play games I just use the native Mac screen and 1650x1050 resolution. 

Resolution is too high on that 38" even for a discrete GPU.


MacBook Pro 13" 2020 Touch Bar M1 8-core CPU 8-core GPU - 16GB unified memory - 512GB PCIe SSD
MacBook Pro 13" 2020 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.3Ghz - 16GB RAM - 1TB PCIe SSD

my awesome Radeon VII eGPU
my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.15 [build link]  


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craftsman
(@craftsman)
Estimable Member
Joined: 2 years ago
 
Posted by: @ikir
Posted by: @joey_roman
Posted by: @craftsman
Posted by: @joey_roman

So all that is missing to use an eGPU are drivers?

 

I am able to play non AAA games just fine on the MacBook Pro M1.  But it cannot even remotely handle my 38" monitor.  Would be in heaven if I could connect an eGPU.

I have it connected to a 49 inch 4K display and the interface speed is better than the 5700 XT, especially video playback. Rendering in Media Encoder is another story, but not too bad.

Oh, I just meant gaming on my 38” is a no go lol. Everything else works fine. If I want to play games I just use the native Mac screen and 1650x1050 resolution. 

Resolution is too high on that 38" even for a discrete GPU.

 

No problem gaming at 4K with a discrete GPU (I have tested 5700 XT and 2080 Super) on such a display. I've also tested them both as eGPU, there's about 15% loss but playable.

 

Unless you mean a laptop discrete GPU, in that case you are correct. Only the top mobile RTX cards can manage it, but Macs don't have those.

This post was modified 2 months ago
2019 16" MacBook Pro (RP5500M) [9th,8C,H] + RX 5700 XT @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Razer Core X Chroma) + macOS 10.15.1 [build link]  

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ikir
 ikir
(@ikir)
Prominent Member
Joined: 4 years ago
 

@craftsman

Yes I mean mobile / Mac mini. We all are comparing notebooks and low-end Macs and Apple Silicon is already impressive, GPU performance too. But you can't expect to play in 4K with first generation, low-end solutions especially when most games are incredibly demanding on 4K resolution even with high-end GPUs like 5700 XT.

it is an impressive start... we will see if eGPU support is coming and which performance will M1X bring!


MacBook Pro 13" 2020 Touch Bar M1 8-core CPU 8-core GPU - 16GB unified memory - 512GB PCIe SSD
MacBook Pro 13" 2020 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.3Ghz - 16GB RAM - 1TB PCIe SSD

my awesome Radeon VII eGPU
my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Mantiz Venus) + macOS 10.15 [build link]  


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UliP
 UliP
(@ulip)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I have the same mini and a Sonnet eGFX Breakaway box with a Radeon 580. Far cheaper than Apple's offer, also silent, but upgradable. The whole thing is running very close to a Mac mini M1 8GB under Cinebench. Go figure!

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

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joevt
(@joevt)
Noble Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

@mac_editor, in your picture at 
https://egpu.io/forums/desktop-computing/teardown-late-2020-mac-mini-apple-silicon-m1-thunderbolt-4-usb4-pcie-4/#post-89551

and in @itsage's picture at
https://egpu.io/forums/which-gear-should-i-buy/apple-event-first-arm-macs-10-11-what-will-this-mean-for-egpu-users/paged/18/#post-89528

link width says x16, but link width in a Thunderbolt enclosure is always x4. Do these GPUs have a built-in PCIe switch? Or is Big Sur on M1 Macs defaulting to capability value instead of status value for GPUs?

@itsage's picture doesn't show Link Speed.

You have to check ioreg for PCIe switches (or use pcitree.sh at https://gist.github.com/joevt/e3cd4ff08aae06279134969c98ca3ab7 but that can't work without an update to pciutils for M1 Macs... maybe replace AppleACPIPlatformExpert with AppleARMPE or create a new DirectHW.kext...)

 

Some M1 Mac performance info not discussed:

People have found that the USB controllers have less than optimal performance (≈200 MB/s slower than expected) so 760 MB/s directly from the M1 USB-C port. You should be able to get the full performance (≈980 MB/s) from a USB 3.1 gen 2 port (that is not powered by an ASMedia ASM1142) of a Thunderbolt 3 dock.

 

Mac mini (2018), Mac Pro (Early 2008), MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015), GA-Z170X-Gaming 7, Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 580 8GB GDDR5, Sonnet Echo Express III-D, Trebleet Thunderbolt 3 to NVMe M.2 case


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