late-2016 13" MBP + Quadro M2000/FirePro WX5100/GTX750-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + macOS 10.12.3 [mehenn]^  

 

Mehenn
(@mehenn)
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February 20, 2017 12:10 pm  

I can report a mission success. I managed to build not one, but 3 compact eGPU. All 3 had 2 items in common:

  • AKiTiO Thunder3 enclosure
  • 120W 5.5/2.5 PSU

As GPUs I've used:

  • GTX 750 1GB
  • nVidia Quadro M2000
  • AMD FirePro 5100

All 3 options worked. But I failed to find one that I am actually happy with. Bang per buck ratios su*ked. I wont pay more than 700GBP for a solution slightly better than my integrated Iris Pro 550. At that level of performance the iGPU gives me more bonuses than the eGPU. Especially the hot-plug.

With sadness I report that I won't persuade this quest anymore. I am returning the M2000 to Amazon and selling my Thunder3 enclosure. 

The End


03/13/2017 edit

Running some tests with the M2000 resulted some disappointing scoring...

Screen Shot 2017 03 12 at 11.29.56 AM


03/08/2017 edit

I've returned the WX5100 since I could have not make it work properly and I am running on a GTX 750Ti right now. By Friday I will get an M2000. Hope will work better than the AMD counterpart. 

Meanwhile the 750Ti works adequate. My both monitors run in retina 1080p@60Hz one connected in the GPU and one connected in the DP port of the enclosure.

Screen Shot 2017 03 08 at 11.42.03 PM


03/05/2017 edit

The WX5100 arrived and I managed to make it work. On the 4th reboot. Just because my monitors do not autoselect the input source and I switched from DP to miniDP. Anyhow, steps:

  • plugged the enclosure, booted mac, ran TB3 enabler and rebooted. I got a link error, but the enclosure is recognized
  • hot plugged the enclosure with the WX5100, ran automate-eGPU. rebooted. repeated 3-4 times - last time ran with -a (because I was dumb and didn't selected the input signal port on my monitors)
  • tweaked enbale-baffin script (added option for 28 cores - I might got it wrong) and ran it; after reboot reported 28 CUs
  • ran some benchmarks (way way lower than the GTX 9800. 2200 on Valley with 1080p@8AA vs 833) which puts the setup right near a RX460...

TODO:

  • see if 14 cores is the max I can have enabled since techpowerup reports 28...

phpM6IDjGAM

phpDrmBvrAM

Screen Shot 2017 03 06 at 5.55.03 PM

phpSSCiNYAM

phpRDKtZKAM

systeminfo


Original post:

Hey guys!

My Thunder3 enclosure arrived for a while, so I am gonna start building my compact eGPU. I already have:

  • AKiTiO Thunder3
  • 120W 12V 10A 5.5/2.5 barrel plug adapter

What I am missing is the actual GPU. Since I would like to abuse my Amazon Prime UK subscription I am planning on testing every GPU I can that fits the requirements (I don't need that much power since I am only using it to power up my 2 4K monitors and play some easy on GPU games - Diablo2, SC2, Dota, etc):

  • fits in the enclosure (with/without fan)
  • uses 75W or 110W (but I need a way to draw power from the board/barrel plug socket to power up the card via 6/8 pin cables - suggestions?)
  • works with MacOS (I don't mind AMD)
  • has 2 DP - not mandatory since maybe my HDMI cable might not have been 2.0 ready. I found this one that specifically supports 4k@60Hz, will try it.
  • can be actually purchased in UK

Please let me know my options (I am leaning for a 750Ti) - since I would really want to use a more powerful card.

I might need to find a way send more than 120W through the barrel plug and draw some wires (6/8pin) for the GPU. Can I use an Asus ROG adapter that outputs 180W but 19V? How can I draw some power from inside the box?

Thanks!

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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
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February 20, 2017 4:14 pm  

Definitely try an RX 460 if you could find one that fits inside the Thunder3. It would be interesting to compare performance numbers with a 15" MBP  Radeon Pro 460.

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goalque
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February 20, 2017 5:03 pm  

@Mehenn: Take a look at this, you can enlarge the photos by right clicking and opening to a new window:

http://forum.51nb.com/thread-1651813-1-1.html

~100W GPU is the maximum because the TB controller and PCIe board circuitry consume at least 20W.

https://www.akitio.com/faq/270-thunder2-pcie-box-what-s-the-maximum-power-output-through-the-pcie-slot

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Mehenn
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February 20, 2017 5:46 pm  

@goalque that is a nice cable. Will that provide the needed boost to power up the GPU? All I need is that 4pin to 6pin cable? How can I get one?

This one is ok? Or can I build one from this one and a 6pin PCIe male?


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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goalque
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February 20, 2017 7:05 pm  

I suppose this 4-pin to 6-pin cable is capable of delivering up to 75W, if you use thick 12V wires (AWG 22).

A 4-pin floppy connector might have the same pin pitch, but it’s not the same housing. JST XHP-4 is likely the correct one:

http://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/pcb-connector-housings/3531636/

I am not aware of any ready-made 4-pin to 6-pin cables...

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Mehenn
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February 21, 2017 11:13 am  

Ok. I've ordered the 3s version of this cable. I'll solder it to a 6pin male and see if I can power it up. The RX460 seems to go for 90W while this 950 will use 110W. Should I stretch for the 110W version (if I can find it...)?


Later edit 

I have found this GPU. But the specifications says that is way to high (12cm) to be able to close the enclosure. But doing some crude image manipulation it looks like it could fit perfectly (without the fan) inside the box. First 2 images are from the two 970 that I actually had in my other enclosure and was able to close it (with the front cut off) and the last one is the RX460 I'm looking at.

How about the HDMI 2.0 cable I linked? Will that handle 4K@60Hz?

Any ideas?

Thanks!

 

Screenshot 2017 02 21 12.07.33
Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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enjoy
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February 21, 2017 5:34 pm  

You must remove the Akitio Fan, you can close the Akitio Cover, just remove the front fan! 

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goalque
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February 21, 2017 5:48 pm  

It relies on the PCIe slot power only. This might be a problem:

https://egpu.io/forums/thunderbolt-enclosures/help-akitio-thunder2-and-power-overload-a-cautionary-tale/

Posted by: Mehenn

 

How about the HDMI 2.0 cable I linked? Will that handle 4K@60Hz?

Any ideas?

Thanks!

 

Your Dell P2715Q supports only 4K@30Hz (HDMI 1.4).

Edited: 1 year  ago

automate-eGPU.shapple_set_os.efi
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late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + Vega64@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS & Win10
late-2016 13" Macbook Pro nTB + GTX980/RX580@32Gbps-TB3 (Netstor HL23T) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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Mehenn
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February 21, 2017 10:43 pm  

Thanks guys...

Damn, 2 bad news. Only good one is that the 460 can fit inside the enclosure. Back to drawing board. 


Later edit

How about using a HDMI 2.0 cable and one of those adapters? The GPU will output 4k@60Hz while the monitor will receive the signal through the adapter in a mini DP port.


Later later edit

I also found this cable. I've read here that this MSI RX460 might fit with no modifications. But that guy has only 2 posts and no pictures, I could not find that GPU somewhere I can return and I am concern about the hump it has above the fan. Anyone seen it?

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Yukikaze
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February 21, 2017 11:32 pm  

mDP/DP to HDMI adapters are typically unidirectional ONLY, and work in the DisplayPort to HDMI direction ONLY.

EDIT: There is a relatively simple way to know if the GPU is too high or not. If its highest point above its mounting bracket is lower than the height of the thumbscrew that the Akitio uses, then it fits. Since some of the GPU components always have the same height, such as the DVI connectors, you can always scale the image as to make this check against the screw size.

Edited: 1 year  ago

My eGPU Zoo - Link to my Implementations.

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Mehenn
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February 22, 2017 6:06 pm  

I am getting drawn closer and closer to the final 2 options:

  • sell the damn enclosure (anyone wanna buy it from UK?)
  • use a WX5100 - which actually makes my endorphins fly. Anyone ever tried it or has seen it used this way? @Yukikaze is the one who pointed out and endured all my questions (I felt bad for him until I learned that he actually loves this kind of low end architecture digging and coding) but as we all know he is not a Mac user. So, for you all mac experts out there. WX5100 anyone?

Thank you!!!


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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
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February 22, 2017 6:28 pm  

@Mehenn WX 5100 would be a fun project. It shares the Ellesmere personality with other Polaris 10 GPUs such as RX 470 and RX 480. However, the PCI ID is different (RX 470/480 is 67DF while WX 5100 is 67c7). Technically it should work with existing kext edits under macOS.

Due to cost and unproved success, nobody has tried one yet to my knowledge. A German architect contacted me about the possibility of running WX 7100 in his Mac Pro tower. He said he would send me an update when he gets the WX 7100.

Edited: 1 year  ago

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Mehenn
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February 22, 2017 6:54 pm  

Oh. Ok.

So here is another question. I've read somewhere that people had to reinstall OSX because something was a hit and miss on the installation process. Since the path I am about to go on is having at least 2 things uncovered by the automate script (the new PCI ID and the fact that you need to actually exit kext by yourself to make the TB3 work) I do wonder if I can use the time machine to create a snapshot of my working OSX and fall back to it if anything goes sour. Because...

I hate reinstalling everything!!!

Will that work?

Beside editing the kext to make TB3 work, and running the v1.0 of the script what else should I do? Add some params to the script? - I have no experience with AMD. I used only nVidia.

Thank you!


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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DANgerous25
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February 24, 2017 4:59 am  
I do wonder if I can use the time machine to create a snapshot of my working OSX and fall back to it if anything goes sour. Because...

I hate reinstalling everything!!!

Will that work?

 
Hi @Mehenn, I will soon have an answer to your question as I toasted my screen res on the iMac 5k! I had previously taken a backup before doing anything and also a backup after. I am trying a "re-install MacOS Sierra" over the existing [toasted] installation first, the theory being it just updates all the system files and leaves all apps, config, etc. If that doesn't work I'll try a restore from backup. Ok toasted is a bit far, but I challenge anyone with a 5k iMac to accept running it at 4k by putting it in and out of sleep first!

 

Edit: Yes, it worked. Re-install of Sierra (over existing installation) restored everything, and was miles quicker than doing time machine restore. However I think that this shows that time machine would work too.

Edited: 1 year  ago

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late-2014 27" iMac 5k R9 M295X + GTX1080Ti@16Gbps-TB (AKiTiO Node via TB3->TB2 adapter) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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Mehenn
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February 24, 2017 7:58 am  

Hey @DANgerous25! Please let me know how it goes. Meanwhile I have found this thread where it explicitly says:

You can use Time Machine backups to recover deleted files, or to do a full re-installation and migration. This helps tremendously if you happen to install a system update or a wrong kext, causing an unbootable system.

I have the WX5100 and a 5TB Seagate on my crosshair already 😀


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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February 24, 2017 8:00 am  
Posted by: DANgerous25 

Edit: Yes, it worked. Re-install of Sierra (over existing installation) restored everything, and was miles quicker than doing time machine restore. However I think that this shows that time machine would work too.

Question: Did that restored all you apps, settings, savefiles, etc? Or you need to use time machine for that?


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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DANgerous25
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February 24, 2017 9:14 am  

Question: Did that restored all you apps, settings, savefiles, etc? Or you need to use time machine for that?

It restored everything back to how it was before I broke everything, keeping all my apps/settings/saves. All I had to do when I first signed in again was enter my iCloud password and back to normal. No need to do anything in time machine.

One thing to consider is the use case: In my case, I broke the system. Hence re-installing MacOS fixed that, and it's great how you can just restore the system without touching everything else. However let's say I broke my drive, or deleted some apps, or broke some apps, whatever, then Time Machine is probably a better option. I've used TM before, it took a looonnnnggg time.

Although now slightly off-topic, I have now ditched TM and I'm now using Carbon Copy Cloner. Much quicker because I can make a direct connection to my backup media, still gives you bootable drives, has much more control than TM. But hey, that's just my preference.

late-2017 27" iMac Pro RPVega64 + GTX1080TI@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + MacOS 10.13.2
late-2014 27" iMac 5k R9 M295X + GTX1080Ti@16Gbps-TB (AKiTiO Node via TB3->TB2 adapter) + macOS10.13 & Win10


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Mehenn
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February 24, 2017 7:03 pm  

Seems logic. Thanks. 

I am not down to the 'Will WX5100 work, and if it works will it work better than the M2000?' I guess I will just order both, test 'em, decide and return the looser.

I really want to make the Fire Pro work..


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Yukikaze
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February 24, 2017 7:19 pm  

I am going to be mighty envious of your WX5100 setup when it is working. It is such a neat little solution with quite a bit of graphical power!

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ikir
 ikir
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February 26, 2017 12:55 pm  

Interesting idea about WX5100!

let us know!

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enjoy
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February 26, 2017 2:23 pm  

US$234 HighPoint RocketStor 6361A Thunderbolt 2 PCIe (16Gbps-TB2)  

Is perfect for WX 5100 but TB2 🙁

 

 

 

ϟ AKiTiO Thunder2 + EVGA GTX 1060 6GB SC Gaming (macOS Sierra 10.12.4 and Windows 10)
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Mehenn
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February 28, 2017 1:02 pm  

I let go of my old eGPU and now I MUST go for the TB3 enclosure. Ordered the WX5100 and will arrive by friday. Hopefully I will be able to make it run.

As a wrap-up:

  • Disable SIP via recovery mode - already done for previous eGPU
  • Use this tool to enable TB3 connectivity
  • Run the v1.0 of the automate-GPU
  • Brace myself and hope to work

Did I miss anything? Also I've read on @ikir's thread that he:

Optional run script for unlocking all Baffin units to boooooooost OpenCL

What is that?


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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March 1, 2017 6:19 pm  

Update time.

Ran the TB3 enabler script and I got an error (the 3 patches ran ok):

symlink("/System/Library/PrelinkedKernels/prelinkedkernel", "/System/Library/Caches/com.apple.kext.caches/Startup/kernelcache") failed 17 (File exists) <createPrelinkedKernel 2795>

But after reboot it seems that the TB3 enclosure is no longer unsupported. That means that I am now ready to insert the GPU once arrives?

Screen Shot 2017 03 01 at 6.18.15 PM


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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ikir
 ikir
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March 1, 2017 7:55 pm  

@Mehenn

There is a thread made by goalque which enable all gnu cores to boost OpenCL https://egpu.io/forums/mac-setup/enable-baffin-cus-sh-script/

About you error... cache? From your script it seems supported now.

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Mehenn
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March 6, 2017 6:40 pm  

Ok, so the WX5100 is in, running, but slow as a snail... It is reportedly using 14CUs...


Later edit

Edited main post with new info/pics

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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March 6, 2017 6:45 pm  

Rebooted, now it shows 28 😀 Wooo wooow


Later edit

Still sucky scoring (compared to 460's...)


Later later edit

I just noticed (based on the screen shot) that one of my screens is running in 30Hz... Damn! Will check it again while at home...

systeminfo

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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March 8, 2017 11:44 pm  

With deep sorrow and sadness I announce the fact that I returned the WX5100. I could not make it work better than a GTX 750Ti which kinda is not right. I am running a GTX 750Ti for now (one monitor plugged in the DP of the GPU and one in the DP of the Thundefr3 enclosure) and waiting to get a M2000 by friday. I will try it and it still works lower than expected, 750Ti will be.

Screen Shot 2017 03 08 at 11.42.03 PM

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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March 12, 2017 8:21 pm  

The Quadro M2000 arrived and its in. Worked from the 1st boot. That is the good news

Screen Shot 2017 03 12 at 11.25.12 AM

The sad news is that is working still way below expectations:

Screen Shot 2017 03 12 at 11.29.56 AM

I think those cards are just slow. I will try one more thing before deciding what to do next. I ordered 2 USB-C to mDP adapters and just connect the monitors in tha MBP and use the Intel Iris Graphics 550 card to power them up. If that works and gives kinda the same results in Valley (above 500, 600) will just see my TB3 enclosure and return the M2000. My mission (to build a compact and powerful) eGPU failed.

If the dGPU fails to perform, I think I will have no other option that to put my Dell DA-2 to work, chop the enclosure and make a modded one.

 

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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Mehenn
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March 13, 2017 6:02 pm  

I've got the 2 USB-C to mDP adapters, fired up my 2 monitors in 4k and they work. So I am suspending my quest to build an compact eGPU since I could not find any GPU that will consume only 75W, have 2 DP ports and run on MacOS on a decent $/performance ratio.

Screen Shot 2017 03 13 at 5.50.32 PM


Edited main post also

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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nando4
(@nando4)
Noble Member Admin
Joined:2 years  ago
Posts: 1679
March 13, 2017 6:20 pm  

@Mehenn, there are three 75W GTX950 cards available:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/10150/msi-geforce-gtx-950-gpu-75w-tdp-2gd5-ocv2-2gd5t-ocv3

GTX950 cards have HDMI 2.0 output (+DP) making it possible to drive your 2x4K displays within macOS using a Thunder3 enclosure.

eGPU Port Bandwidth Reference TableeGPU Setup 1.35


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Mehenn
(@mehenn)
Estimable Member
Joined:1 year  ago
Posts: 103
March 13, 2017 6:23 pm  

@nando4 thanks for the info! I was looking for one of those, but could not find any in UK... I was even prepared to power up one of the monitors through the DP adapter of the Thunder3 enclosure if I would have found it.

Still looking for 'em at a decent price. I cannot use HDMI since my monitors know only HDMI 1.2 and 4K@30Hz scratches my eyes 😀

Edited: 1 year  ago


late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + GTX980@16Gbps-TB2 (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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(@peter_floor_kousgaard)
New Member
Joined:3 months  ago
Posts: 1
March 9, 2018 4:03 pm  

I have a macbook Pro late 2015 running OSX Sierra High, and a Sonnet thunderbolt 1/2 enclosure with a tempo ssd and a WX 5100 inside. But I can't for the life if me get the damn thing to register the wx5100 at all. how did you get it to work/register the card?


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