AKiTiO Node Pro Review - Jack of All Trades
A note on the thunderbolt controllers. It looks like the difference between the JHL6540 and the DSL6540 is a non-issue. DSL6540 has been discontinued (see here https://www.anandtech.com/show/11692/intel-to-discontinue-first-gen-thunderbolt-3-controllers). JHL6540 appears to be the successor. Both chips are dual thunderbolt 3 port chips, so I doubt it'll cause latency issues. I can't find a copy of the datasheets to do a more real comparison, but from what Intel publishes, there are no differences other than the JHL is lead-free and DSL is not.
is it possible to run the Samsung drive and a gpu card in the same enclosure? is this possible with any enclosure? would be nice to not run an external ssd and external gpu separately
@kyle_jones It's not possible to have a Thunderbolt 3 enclosure hosting both an NVMe drive and eGPU at the same time. As you can see in the Samsung 960 EVO speed test, its read speed can saturate the TB3 bandwidth.
@kyle_jones , the buyer's guide has several enclosures (Powercolor Devil Box, Mantiz Venus, Omen Accelerator) with internal SATA-III connectors & bays to host an internal SATA drive. Just note that for best drive & eGPU performance you'd want to host them off their own separate cable. Such enclosures are also internal USB 3.1 Gen1 hub limited to 5Gbps for those drives.
Stepping up one notch, the AKiTiO Node Pro's daisy-chain TB3 port can function as a 10Gbps USB-C 3.1 port. Consider there:
Example USB-C 2.5″ drive components
Or as per @itsage , a NVME SSD can saturate TB3 bandwidth. There would need a separate TB3 enclosure with it's own TB3 port for best performance. Eg:
Hi, I bought the enclosure and should arrive soon and I bought an EVGA 1080ti SC2 hybrid. I’ve notice that the GPU has a fan, is there space to install it?
Can I use this card?
@jo_di_risio there's space inside but you'll need to create a custom mount for the radiator and fan.
Hi, I’ve ordered the akitio node pro and should arrive at the beginning of March.
I’m recapping what I need to do in order to let this work.
Having the Nvidia Evga 1080Ti hydro copper I will need the download the latest driver (I saw a thread on this website) install the latest High Sierra and should work?
Is there a step by step?
@itsage thank you. I actually stopped the order but did install 10.13.3 so in case I'd like to use an EGPU with my TB2 I should still be able.
Have had my Node Pro for about a week hooked up to a 13" Spectre X360 (8550U) with an Asus-braded RX 480. So far I have been happy with the performance of the Node Pro, but I have to say the fans are pretty crazy. The case fan (which is an exhaust fan, which seems odd to me) was pretty low quality and runs all the time. I found the sound it made to be, honestly, pretty annoying so I replaced it with an $8 92MM fan. It's bad enough that this fan seems to just run constantly, but it seems like Akitio skimped on the quality of the part as well.
The PSU fan get's what I would consider extremely loud. Significantly louder than my GPU. I'm not sure if the fan speed is controlled by power draw or temps, but my RX480 only seems to pull around 150W max under load, so it's not exactly stressing the power supply. It may get replaced some day with a model that is quieter.
The rest of the case is awesome and the quality / aesthetics of the Node Pro are fantastic, which is honestly the reason I shelled out more for the Node Pro vs the Node. I guess I just expected more for the price, but I suppose it isn't the most expensive case out there.
If anyone is curious, this is the fan I used: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002KTZJOQ/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 I have had good luck with them in the past. They don't move as much air as some other fans on the market, but the thermals in the Node Pro seem fine. My GPU never gets above 60c and I am venting directly against a wall with about a two inch gap, which is totally not ideal. Switching the bottom exhaust fan didn't seem to affect the situation whatsoever and makes the box much more pleasant at idle.
Other than that, peripherals absolutely do not work on the second TB3 port, which is as expected, and the rest of the enclosure works fantastically. Looks great, great thermal performance, rock solid stability, great performance, etc.
And for the record, I would totally recommend the Node Pro (without any experience with any other eGPU enclosure) - I still have a week or two to return it and I can't see that happening.
Does anyone know if it makes a difference if you plug a usb 3/thunderbolt hub into the second port of the enclosure or the second port of the device/controller? I'm asking because I have a 2 port "13 MacBook, this enclosure, and a usb 3 hub.