Netstor Hercules HL23T Review - Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick
 
Notifications
Clear all

Netstor Hercules HL23T Review - Speak Softly and Carry a Big Stick  

 of  7
  RSS

Sky11
(@sky11)
Reputable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Please don't get me wrong - this is an interesting device, but I do not want people to have illusions about what GPUs they can plug.
Since this box is dual-port, it cannot officially advertise eGPU support and hence the OEM has not tested that many GPUs - and there is no official compatibility list.

To do: Create my signature with system and expected eGPU configuration information to give context to my posts. I have no builds.

.

goalque liked
ReplyQuote
goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

True, there is no guarantee that your GPU would work in Windows. People should be aware that this is officially under macOS PCIe expansion category with the factory firmware: for major professional PCIe cards like Blackmagic Design video cards, audio cards, RAID controllers, and video transcoding such as Red Rocket-X are supported, as with the more expensive NA211TB3.

Samsung 960 PRO NVMe SSD is automatically recognized with the M.2 NVMe to PCIe adapter on macOS High Sierra. I’ve successfully daisy chained RX 580 and RX 480 but officially Apple supports just a single Sapphire RX 580 Pulse at the moment.

eGFX firmware will make it different. Unfortunately, I can’t say more about it for now but supposedly I can test and show results later.

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
wimpzilla
(@wimpzilla)
Honorable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 
Posted by: goalque

@wimpzilla:

I found one photo, testing the 3.3V part of 75W with a R9 Nano Smile

Thanks for this picture, i did not thought they would use the backplane to hold a part of the board voltage regulation.

As you wisely said, it seems to me too, the enclosure is pretty straight forward without fancy add-in options. The main board shown only the TB ic controllers and a bunch of voltage regulatory component.

What the 3pin on the main board stand for? It is the output for fans regulation of the box i think?

Just check if the backplane do not heat up, same for the main board. It should not since the whole box uses 12v for pci-e feed and 5v for the logic to power the main board. I think the 3.3v is pumped from the psu 5v, so the psu get only the load on the 12v rail and the 5v rail. So you should drain 70W max for the 5v and 300W from the 12v.

Should not be an issue on latest power efficient cards, but as you said with older card the topnotch Hp omen psu would be a advised. The mini-itx psu are often louder than the normal ones, especially on coil whine and switching noise. Some compromises are needed since the box dimensions.

*Note also the fan shroud that take some space in the box layout. I could only suppose you could disassemble AIB cards to remove their fan shroud and replace it with some 100mm fans, mounted directly to the box shroud. This should free some space on the card heatsink and maybe fit in the box even if the AIB card was bigger than the space allow. Also you could directly remove the box fan shroud to free some more space for the card.

2012 13-inch Dell Latitude E6320 + R9 [email protected] (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10
E=Mc²

 
2012 15" Lenovo Thinkpad T530 [2nd,4C,Q] + R9 270X @ 4Gbps-mPCIe2 (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

@wimpzilla: If I recall correctly, the 3-pin connector provides 5V to the TB3 card and powering on via TB host.

5V from the 4-pin on the backplane is converted to 3.3V by the DC-to-DC converter.

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
wimpzilla
(@wimpzilla)
Honorable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 
Posted by: goalque

@wimpzilla: If I recall correctly, the 3-pin connector provides 5V to the TB3 card and powering on via TB host.

5V from the 4-pin on the backplane is converted to 3.3V by the DC-to-DC converter.

Thanks you.

Edit: Gotcha, that connector should care the PSU sense pin, a ground and the 5vsb or -12v to the TB main board.

2012 13-inch Dell Latitude E6320 + R9 [email protected] (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10
E=Mc²

 
2012 15" Lenovo Thinkpad T530 [2nd,4C,Q] + R9 270X @ 4Gbps-mPCIe2 (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 
Posted by: Sky11

The power supply - 300W is a problem. Yes RX580 and WX7100 will be fine, however for anything beyond that you will need a beefier power supply.

Try to find a mini-ITX power supply >400W...   (with reasonable price and noise)

The R9 390 that I tested was a Sapphire Nitro R9 390 with two 8pin power connectors.

http://www.sapphiretech.com/productdetial.asp?pid=C436E37C-8A09-48B6-9F2B-F4AF86E377B6&lang=eng

The TDP of this card is 375W and I had no problems running it through Fire Strike stress loops (do not try this at home!). When running GPGPU apps, the power consumption is often much more less, and therefore I bet that HL23T's PSU can handle Vega FE's 265W-275W for rendering very well.

Unfortunately, there does not exist 400W PSUs at this size as far as I know (height 40.5mm)

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

I found Enhance’s product specification:

http://www.enhance.com.tw/new/enp7000-80plus-series/
http://www.enhance.com.tw/new/wp-content/uploads/sites/6/2013/11/ENP7030-SPEC.pdf

Notes:

( 1 ) The maximum combined load on +5V and +3.3V outputs shall not exceed 80W

( 2 ) +12V total DC output power shall not exceed 275W

( 3 ) When +12V load is 14A, the Min load of +5V is 3A.

( 4 ) The maximum continuous average DC outputs power shall not exceed 300W

It has an over-power protection:

3.1 Over-power protection

The power supply will be shutdown and latch off when output power over 110% ~ 150% of rated DC output.

As a rule of thumb, your floor power strip’s energy meter should never exceed 300W readings. R9 390’s Fire Strike stressing 320W peak was the whole eGPU system power consumption. R9 390 and Vega FE go over the limits so these cards are not recommended.

I hope that Netstor can provide a new PSU in their future versions to serve also Vega FE and Vega 64 users. They may work in rendering tasks continuously, but heavy gaming should be avoided.

My wish would be a customized PSU with a quiet, 8cm bottom fan. 

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


itsage liked
ReplyQuote
wimpzilla
(@wimpzilla)
Honorable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I think each setup need to be tested before, especially if testing Vega or power hungry cards. Including all other parameters that are the psu T°, main pcb's t°, power consumption of the various box component, psu behavior depending the load and the box t°, etc. To clearly describe the overall product behavior when used and stressed.

Nevertheless as you said, the psu 5v should not excess 80Watt. I hope the whole TB main board + backplane + charge, do not pump so much.

If i not mistake here, the load of the psu rail is divided, since it is a small psu. So if you do not use the 5v you can pump max current on the 12v and vice-versa.

Here you should not load the 5v too much, so imo, the psu could reach peak of 20/23A on the 12v, so almost 275Watt. It is quite a lot for a single gpu, especially if the gpu/vrm t° are low. Obviously overclocking or mining with it is strongly not recommended, for a heavy professional use, it need to be tested before with a power hungry gpu like.

Just for the sake, what also matter is the psu current and voltage stability/quality, in few word the build quality of the psu. You could have a 30A cheap psu beated by a lower but branded 20A psu, when testing the overall power delivery behavior. It is another key aspect that one should consider when buying a psu.

Usually the component are rated over the manufacturer specs, if good quality build, often it run fine even under heavy stress, because well studied for that.

2012 13-inch Dell Latitude E6320 + R9 [email protected] (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10
E=Mc²

 
2012 15" Lenovo Thinkpad T530 [2nd,4C,Q] + R9 270X @ 4Gbps-mPCIe2 (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10 [build link]  


goalque liked
ReplyQuote
goalque
(@goalque)
Noble Member Admin
Joined: 4 years ago
 

The specs of PCIe slot are 12V @ 5.5A and 3.3V @ 3A for a total of 75W. It’s generally not much more than 3 Amps when the 5V is converted to 3.3V. The backplane and the TB3 card are not power hungry. Their TB2 variant worked without the 3-pin connector and I suppose the TB3 behaves the same way. I think the main purpose of the 3-pin is just to power on the PSU, and the TB controller relies on PCIe slot power.

The total power consumption matters, and the PSU manufacturer stated that 300W should not be exceeded.

Here are the exact Vega FE numbers, measured by an oscilloscope:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd-radeon-vega-frontier-edition-16gb,5128-10.html

automate-eGPU EFIapple_set_os.efi

Mid 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro eGPU Master Thread

 
2018 13" MacBook Pro [8th,4C,U] + Radeon VII @ 32Gbps-TB3 (ASUS XG Station Pro) + Win10 1809 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
wimpzilla
(@wimpzilla)
Honorable Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 
Posted by: goalque

The specs of PCIe slot are 12V @ 5.5A and 3.3V @ 3A for a total of 75W. It’s generally not much more than 3 Amps when the 5V is converted to 3.3V. The backplane and the TB3 card are not power hungry. Their TB2 variant worked without the 3-pin connector and I suppose the TB3 behaves the same way. I think the main purpose of the 3-pin is just to power on the PSU, and the TB controller relies on PCIe slot power.

The total power consumption matters, and the PSU manufacturer stated that 300W should not be exceeded.

Here are the exact Vega FE numbers, measured by an oscilloscope:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd-radeon-vega-frontier-edition-16gb,5128-10.html

That's why you could, i think, run and bench the box with a power hungry card like a R9 390, without too much problems. The overall consumption on the 5v is low, so the 12v get almost all the current. The real question as you wisely said, it's "how much" time and if it "will be stable" for long runs.

Vega as all news gpu die in general, have a strong correlation between power consumption and gpu t°. So the watercooled vega will consume less for example than the aircooled, at same clocks/voltage. It is also why if you are a overclocker, you wish have your GTX 1080Ti under water, to ensure that the card hold his max boost clock without dropping frequency.

So the overall for sure, i would not recommend a Vega FE straight with this kind of psu. Without at least have some folks that have tried it before, under different workloads.

2012 13-inch Dell Latitude E6320 + R9 [email protected] (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10
E=Mc²

 
2012 15" Lenovo Thinkpad T530 [2nd,4C,Q] + R9 270X @ 4Gbps-mPCIe2 (EXP GDC 8.4) + Win10 [build link]  


ReplyQuote
 of  7