How to switch easily between GPU and eGPU on Mac Mini 2018?
 
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How to switch easily between GPU and eGPU on Mac Mini 2018?  

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(@jangoloti_1)
Estimable Member
Joined: 6 months ago
 

Dear all

I finally managed to make my setup (Mac mini 2018 + Sonnet Breakaway 550 + Nitro+ RX 5700 XT) work, even after Apple support tried to convince me I needed the 650 W enclosure.

Anyway, now I have the setup working but I do not use the eGPU all the time, it stays unpowered often, and I need a clever way to jump between both solutions without having to unnecessarily unplug connectors from the back of either the Mac Mini, the enclosure or my HP Z31x monitor.

I have 2 HDMI cables in use, but have DisplayPorts available too if needed, on the card and the monitor. I also have bought SwitchResX, in case it helps.

  • HDMI 1: Connected to Mac Mini
  • HDMI 2: Connected to RX 5700 XT
  • DisplayPorts, 2 unused in monitor and AMD card.
  • "Mirror Displays" selected in "Displays" under System Preferences to avoid having one hidden display.

The switching between ports on the HP Z31x is through an OSD selector, but that leaves two displays being fed by the Mac mini (as I look in the System preferences) that reduces by 60% the performance of the AMD card (tested with Unigine Valley), forces me to "Mirror Displays" on OS, and is clearly not very smart.

What would you do? If we number the solutions I can think of:

  1. The current solution, with all its disadvantages.
  2. Using an HDMI splitter to use only one port in the back of the monitor.
  3. Some type of keyboard shortcut for Mac OS or SwitchResX?
  4. Any other third party application?

There is probably a much smarter solution I have not thought of.

Hoping somebody can enlighten me, best regards,

Jaime 

This topic was modified 2 months ago

Mac Mini 2018 i7 16 GB 512 GB SSD, Mac Book Pro 2016, HP Z31x, Sonnet Breakaway Box 550 W, Nitro+ RX5700 XT, KFA2 SNPR 1060 6GB eGPU,...


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(@branislav_benak)
Eminent Member
Joined: 1 year ago
 
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@jangoloti_1,  Hi. I chose the way of HDMI splitter. It is very fast way how to switch input. Monitor response almost instantly. 

 

 

1. Macbook Air 13" 2014 + Akitio Thunder2 RX560 (optional GTX1050Ti).
2. MacMini 2018 i3 + Sapphire Gearbox Vega 56.


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(@jangoloti_1)
Estimable Member
Joined: 6 months ago
 

@branislav_benak,  

Thanks, I have ordered one compatible with 4K/60Hz, not all are.

One question: I suppose the Mac mini GPU sees the monitor as disconnected when the splitter is getting the input from the eGPU, right? That would solve the issue of the decreased performance and Mac OS thinking it is feeding two screens.

I can always find another use for it if I am not happy anyway, there are never enough HDMI ports in a television set.

Best regards,

JA

 

 

 

 

Mac Mini 2018 i7 16 GB 512 GB SSD, Mac Book Pro 2016, HP Z31x, Sonnet Breakaway Box 550 W, Nitro+ RX5700 XT, KFA2 SNPR 1060 6GB eGPU,...


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(@branislav_benak)
Eminent Member
Joined: 1 year ago
 

Yes you are right. As soon as the splitter is switched to eGPU, macmini output is disabled and vice versa. I'm using the eGPU only occasionally. Mostly I'm using macmini internal Intel 630. 

I bough this splitter and cables.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HDMI-Bi-directional-Switch-3D-UHD-4K-HDMI-Switcher-Splitter-Hub-1x2-HDCP-Female/254331448474?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

https://www.ebay.com/itm/PREMIUM-UltraHD-HDMI-Cable-v1-4-0-5M-1M-1-5M-2M-10M-High-Speed-4K-2160p-3D-Lead/273176216074?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

 

 

1. Macbook Air 13" 2014 + Akitio Thunder2 RX560 (optional GTX1050Ti).
2. MacMini 2018 i3 + Sapphire Gearbox Vega 56.


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