late-2016 13" Macbook Pro + RX480@32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Thunder3) + macOS10.12.2 [ikir]^  

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ikir
 ikir
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December 10, 2016 11:18 am  

Received my MacBook 2016 yesterday (it is my dream machine!!!) I will update this thread with my experience  building an eGPU with Thunder3

 

 My configuration:

MacBook Pro 13" touchbar, i5 2,9Ghz, 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD, Iris 550

Thunder3 modded with Radeon RX480 4GB connected to LG Ultrawide 4K display

 

Hardware Installation

1. Opened Thunder3 classic (i will need some time to build an enclosure)

2. Put RX480 in place

3. Connected Thunder3 to DA-2 PSU with a modded cable which power both RX480 (8-pin PCie) and Akitio Thunder3 (barrel plug)

 4. Connect to Mac

 

macOS configuration

1. Disabled SIP with csrutil from Recovery terminal

2. Downloaded TB3 enabler to let MacBook Pro use Thunder3 (sadly if you don't want to edit kext there is no way yet since Apple software blocked older Thunderbolt 3 devices)

3. Run new automate-GPU script for macOS 10.12.2+ (coming soon)

4. Optional run script for unlocking all Baffin  units to boooooooost OpenCL

 

 Preliminary benchmarks:

I get OpenGL, OpenCL and Metal acceleration, the gfx card is super silent and very fast (and cheap too). There are still issue but i didn't got any artifact connecting it directly to Thunderbolt3.

 

 Valley Benchmark 4K 3440x1440 ultrawide 2x ultra:

Iris 550 5fps - 207 score

Thunder3+RX 480 23.4fps - 980 score

 

 

 Geekbench 4 GPU:

Iris 550 30584 OpenCL score

Thunder3+RX 480 (with baffin script) 107071 OpenCL score

 

 

Luxmark luxball:

Thunder3+RX 480 (with baffin script) 14222

Thunder3+RX 480 (with baffin script) + Iris 550 15423

Cinebench R15 OpenGL:

Thunder3+RX 480 68,70 fps

 

UPDATE: there are issues with TB3 connection and Radeon cards, so for now i discourage anyone to build this setup. I was able to boot after many many tries. I switched to Nvidia GTX 780ti and it runs fasteeer and boots most of  time.

https://egpu.io/forums/builds/late-2016-13-mbp-gtx780-ti32gbps-tb3-akitio-thunder3-macos-10-12-3-ikir/

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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demon151
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December 10, 2016 11:55 am  

Can u try with nvidia gpu over bootcamp windows 10 or 8.1 ??? Thanks 


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ikir
 ikir
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December 11, 2016 10:52 am  
Posted by: demon151

 

Can u try with nvidia gpu over bootcamp windows 10 or 8.1 ??? Thanks 

   

No sorry i just use macOS and this time i want to try Radeon, it should be simpler to get it work, it consumes much less and has only one power cable... and it cost less. I paid RX480 4GB very little last week.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
 ikir
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December 14, 2016 10:37 am  

Received Thunder3. Opened the case and plugged RX480. Still waiting for PSU and power cable.

Downloaded TB3 enabler 🙂 https://github.com/KhaosT/tb3-enabler

 Thunder3 works, connect 40Gbps, thanks to TB3 enabler script. [ Thunder3 picture posted in opening thread ]

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
 ikir
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January 5, 2017 1:17 pm  

First benchmark [RX480 versus Iris550 moved to opening post ]

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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samklee
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January 5, 2017 2:57 pm  
Posted by: ikir

 

Received my MacBook 2016 yesterday (it is my dream machine!!!) I will update this thread with my experience  building an eGPU with Thunder3

   

Great job!  Are you beta testing the 10.12.2+ automate-egpu script?


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FricoRico
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January 5, 2017 3:35 pm  

Nice progress Ikir, could you also run Valley/Heaven in Extreme preset? This is makes it easier to compare between benchmarks.


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ikir
 ikir
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January 5, 2017 3:36 pm  

@FricoRico

 

Sure i will do as soon as i can, probably in 2 days since i'm working 10h/day until sunday!

 

@samklee

Yup, it will be released soon, keep checking this website/forum!

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
 ikir
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January 6, 2017 10:57 pm  
Posted by: FricoRico

 

Nice progress Ikir, could you also run Valley/Heaven in Extreme preset? This is makes it easier to compare between benchmarks.

 

Heaven  Extreme preset 36,2 fps

Valley Extreme preset 36,6 fps

Schermata 2017 01 07 alle 00.18.25

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
 ikir
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January 6, 2017 11:50 pm  

Got even better results: Sapphire Nitro + RX 480 has a switch to activate a little overclock.

these are the new results: [ picture in opening post of thread ]

 

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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nando4
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January 7, 2017 12:42 am  

@Ikir, very nice indeed. You are I believe the first to showcase a AMD RX series eGPU on OSX 10.12.2 with a late-2016 MBP. Congratulations.

I'll mention that a bootcamped Win10, if configured right,  can offer you an eGPU accelerated internal LCD mode using AMD X-Connect. No requirement for an external LCD then.  Goalque's starting pointers to do this are at https://egpu.io/forums/mac-setup/thunderbolt-3-egpu-with-late-2016-macbook-pro/#post-49

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ikir
 ikir
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January 7, 2017 1:21 am  

@nando4

Thanks! I've enjoyed a gaming night with Elder Scrolls Online and Bioshock in 4k thanks to eGPU 😀

I'm interested only in macOS, i know X-Connect can be enables in win side but i always connect my Macbook to LG 34" 4k UltraWide display at home for work and fun anyway. Maybe i will post a photo of my desk but i would love to create a box for my eGPU first.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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Mark
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January 7, 2017 2:11 am  

Hiya,

Congratulations for getting it set up! Can you see if you can play a 4k video with either Photos or Quicktime without any problems? Thanks!

2016 13" MBP with Touch Bar
Sonnet III-D modified with Sonnet SE1 TB3 Upgrade Card and 600W PSU
MSI RX Vega 56 Air Boost OC
OS X 10.12.4


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nando4
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January 7, 2017 6:37 am  

@ikir, if you decide at any point to load Win10 on your system I'd be curious if you get a full run of 3dmark11. The Thunder2 would fail with R9 cards part way through which we attributed to power drop outs. The equivalent HD79xx card would work fine.

Wondering if the Thunder3 has the same issue with new AMD cards?

2013 15" Dell Latitude E6540 HD8790M + RX580@4Gbps-EC2 (EXP GDC 8.x) + macOS 10.13.5 & Win10
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ikir
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January 7, 2017 9:23 am  
Posted by: Mark

 

Hiya,

Congratulations for getting it set up! Can you see if you can play a 4k video with either Photos or Quicktime without any problems? Thanks!

   

Downloading this  http://4ksamples.com/elysium-4k-trailer/

It seems to plays ok, no issue to report. Also tried to play in Photo a 4k shoot by me with iPhone 6s this last summer, no problems at all.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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goalque
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January 7, 2017 12:22 pm  

@nando4, the known AMD issue in low power conditions seems to be marginal - the only reports are from Rx 200 and Rx 300 series cards which cannot operate well when mounted on a single-slot enclosure. Fiji and Polaris based cards don’t suffer from these problems.

Starting from Crimson Edition 16.7.1, AMD improved power distribution of the reference RX 480. However, this fix applies to Windows only and since the power is passed through the TB board of Thunder2/Thunder3, there is no guarantee that you can safely stress test the reference RX 480 on macOS.

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

Sapphire Nitro+ RX 480 has a 8-pin AUX power connector and it consumes only ~60W from the PCIe slot:

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3098825/components-graphics/sapphire-nitro-rx-480-review-polaris-rethought-and-refined.html

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ikir
 ikir
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January 9, 2017 1:29 am  

Played FireWatch and Elder Scrolls Online in 4K Ultra for few hours without issues!

Schermata 2017 01 09 alle 01.52.12 copia

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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may
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January 9, 2017 5:03 pm  

hello ikir
do you use Final Cut Pro X?
Can you do BruceX benchmark with and without RX 480?
http://www.apple.com/final-cut-pro/trial/
https://blog.alex4d.com/2013/10/30/brucex-a-new-fcpx-benchmark/
Cheers


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Inotna
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January 9, 2017 10:53 pm  

I might go for this setup. I have the same MBP as except that I only got 256Gb and I already have a Sapphire Nitro RX 480 8GB. 

 

Can you link to the Power Supply and power cable?

And how does it work? do have to shut down the Mac plug in the eGPU boot the Mac up or is hot pluggable?


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ikir
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January 10, 2017 1:54 am  
Posted by: may

 

hello ikir
do you use Final Cut Pro X?
Can you do BruceX benchmark with and without RX 480?
http://www.apple.com/final-cut-pro/trial/
https://blog.alex4d.com/2013/10/30/brucex-a-new-fcpx-benchmark/
Cheers

   

Hi sadly i've tried tonight but Final Cut crash when doing anything after loading! We will try to investigate!

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
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January 10, 2017 1:57 am  
Posted by: Inotna

 

I might go for this setup. I have the same MBP as except that I only got 256Gb and I already have a Sapphire Nitro RX 480 8GB. 

 

Can you link to the Power Supply and power cable?

And how does it work? do have to shut down the Mac plug in the eGPU boot the Mac up or is hot pluggable?

   

There are still issue, i'm trying to understand why sometimes my Akitio Thunder 3 fails to load. I'm using a DA-2 with a custom created cable which go in 8-pin PCIe power of Radeon RX480 and also in Akitio barrel plug.

This is still an early step, i suggest to all you wait a little. Or if you want to try a eGPU setup keep in mind it should be an hobby for now,  not a practical solution for everyone.... yet.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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theitsage
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January 10, 2017 2:35 am  

@ikir I tried a reference RX-480 with a similar setup (DA-2 and Thunder2) and during heavy load, the setup would crash. I've since switched to using the RX 470. You'll find discussions on the other forum that these RX 480 cards are quite abusive to the PCIe slot. Goalque had done a few mods to his eGPU board to accommodate the power draw from the slot.

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Yukikaze
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January 10, 2017 2:47 am  

That RX480 issue was a part of my decision to grab a Fury. The Furies only draw ~30W through the slot.

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Inotna
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January 10, 2017 7:51 am  

Thanks. So is 470 a better choice for eGPU in the thunder 3?

Now the Node works in macOS then there should be no power issues with 480, right?


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ikir
 ikir
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January 10, 2017 12:52 pm  
Posted by: theitsage

 

@ikir I tried a reference RX-480 with a similar setup (DA-2 and Thunder2) and during heavy load, the setup would crash. I've since switched to using the RX 470. You'll find discussions on the other forum that these RX 480 cards are quite abusive to the PCIe slot. Goalque had done a few mods to his eGPU board to accommodate the power draw from the slot.

   

Thanks, yes i've seen the thread. I should not have this issue since my card have 8-pin. I have no problem under heavy load, no crash yet during gameplay.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
 ikir
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January 12, 2017 1:21 am  

Theoretically i've resolved issue with my Thunder3, my kexts were already modified from previous installation. Copied extension form a clean install, fixed permission with terminal and rerun TB enabler and automate-ogpu scripts. Everything runs smooth now.

 

Tonight i've tested Dying Light (wow such  great game!!) in 4k runs quite good but it is a kind of game which need to be super smooth so i will try to tweak settings or lower resolution, but also in 4k is playable! Can't load screenshots at full resolutions in PNG since they are 8MB ah ah ah

 

dl 1

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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ikir
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January 12, 2017 10:26 pm  

New OpenCL benchmark with Luxmark and Geekbench 4. Also OpenGL Cinebench.

Updated first post.

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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Anchoricex
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January 13, 2017 8:28 pm  

Really really bummed that FCPX is crashing with the RX480.

Does an AMD card in an EGPU enclosure need to be powered on before the macbook is turned on in OSX?


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goalque
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January 13, 2017 9:31 pm  

One user reported that FCPX upgrade to 10.3 caused similar errors. Prior to version 10.3 (support for the Touch Bar on MBP), he was running two Titan Z’s with the Mac Pro 6,1 (automate-eGPU.sh v0.9.9). It’s a pity that most of the macOS apps are not designed with eGPUs in mind.

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Anchoricex
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January 14, 2017 7:17 pm  

Yeah and it's interesting that rolling FCPX back to 10.2.2 works fine with eGPU/RX480... it very well may be a change that was implemented in later versions of FCPX that is accidentally breaking it. At any rate, I actually submitted a bug report to FCPX here. http://www.apple.com/feedback/finalcutpro.html

 

Will they read it? Probably not, but worth a shot. I don't think that they're impervious to the fact that people use these newer cards in their mac pros. This might be something the FCPX dev team wants fixed so anyone can and should file a report. 


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ikir
 ikir
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January 14, 2017 9:20 pm  
Posted by: Anchoricex

 

Really really bummed that FCPX is crashing with the RX480.

Does an AMD card in an EGPU enclosure need to be powered on before the macbook is turned on in OSX?

   

Yes!

 

@Anchoricex

very interesting, we still have hope 

eGPU.it | LG 34" 4K 34UC88 curved ultrawide display
MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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Anchoricex
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January 15, 2017 12:59 am  

https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/enabling-amd-rx-4xx-cards-in-sierra.201364/page-18

 

No idea what the first post on this page means but apparently this guy has FCPX/iMovie working fine now with a 480 card. 


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goalque
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January 15, 2017 1:29 am  

It’s not just the FCPX version. Another variable is hardware. 10.3 worked fine with some older MBP (don’t know which model). Ikir’s TB3 MBP apparently is not compatible.

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Anchoricex
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January 16, 2017 6:40 pm  

https://egpu.io/forums/mac-setup/2016-13-mbp-rx480-sonnet-iii-d-os-x-10-12-2/#post-1555

 

Mark's TB3 2016 13" MBP claims to have no crashing issues with the rx480 and FCPX. Sonnet enclosure & PSU are the different factors here?

 

edit; nvm apparently extensive testing hasn't been done yet


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ikir
 ikir
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January 19, 2017 12:02 am  

Even 9to5Mac new video about eGPU report FCPX crashing

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MacBook Pro 2018 Touch Bar i7 quad-core 2.7Ghz - 16GB RAM - 512GB PCIe SSD --> my Mantiz Venus extreme mod with Sapphire Nitro+ RX Vega 64


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