Dell XPS 15 + eGPU + Dock?
I recently purchased a 9560 on sale with the intent of switching out my old Desktop for a more mobile solution with the power of an eGPU on deck.
The thing is I'd also really like the flexibility of all the IO and a single cable solution for my Laptop as well, so my plan was to do the following:
eGPU > Dell TB16
Dell TB16 > Laptop
I'd have my displays plugged into the eGPU of course, and my peripherals plugged into my TB16 dock.
I've read on reddit from a few people that think this will not work, since the 9560 is only 2 lane Thunderbolt 3.
Can anyone confirm or does anyone have any thoughts on this?
As the XPS9560 has a single TB3 port, you'd require a TB3 enclosure with a daisy chain port like an AKITiO Thunder3/Node Lite or Node Pro to attach your TB15 dock to: https://egpu.io/external-gpu-buyers-guide-2017/#tb3-enclosures
We have no record of how that combo would work other than say their attachment in such manner is within the Thunderbolt guidelines.
I was thinking as much, I haven't found record ANYWHERE of anyone with real world experience actually doing this.
If I take the plunge and decide to be the guinea pig I'll definitely contribute to the site and let everyone know who's interested on the actual results
I believe one guy on Reddit ran a Devil box chained to a TB15 (XPS->TB15->Devil Box) and it nearly halved his 3DMark performance. Unfortunately, he didn't run any other benchmarks to my knowledge. In other words, it will work but the performance hit is significant. If single-cable docking is important, you're better off spending more for an enclosure like the ASUS ROG XG Station 2, Mantiz Venus or Powercolor Devil Box that provides USB ports and networking.
So I found this thread before testing and decided to take the plunge. I currently have a Mantiz eGPU hooked through the Thunderbolt port on my TB15 which is connected to the Thunderbolt port on my Precision 5510 and it works. There was a hiccup or two, discrete graphics needs to be disabled (in my case it was the nVidia Quadro M1000M), but it works flawlessly afterwords. Not sure if I can get graphics acceleration on my main display, but that isn't a factor, I only use graphics intensive programs on my external monitor which is connected through DP on my eGPU.
Make sure graphics drivers and Thunderbolt drivers are updated. Also, all eGPU USB and Gigabit internet are fully capable. GREAT SUCCESS!
I have a similar setup as described by OP, i.e. Razer Core X with GTX 1080 Ti connected to Dell TB16 connected to Precision M5530. As soon as eGPU is plugged in, the Intel's Thunderbolt Software is going complain that external graphics should connect directly to the computer. I haven’t seen anyone on the Internet mentioning about this fact. Anyways, you can just ignore this warning and install drivers (as usual make sure your firmware is up-to-date and old drivers are uninstalled). The device-to-host bandwidth takes a performance hit of around 20-25% compared to a direct connection, as both dock and eGPU effectively are sharing same PCIe lanes. Given a performance hit from putting a GTX 1080 Ti into the Razer Core X, I estimate it lost about 30-50% of its original performance in total depending on the application, so think twice before deciding on going that way.
EDIT: I've just noticed that TB16 will disable USB audio and networking to save bandwidth when Razer Core X is active. As soon as eGPU is disconnected, the ASMedia USB Hub needs to be reset (disable->enable in Device Manager) if you want network and audio work again. Something to keep in mind.