New eGPU enclosures from Sonnet: Breakaway Box 750/750ex
 
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New eGPU enclosures from Sonnet: Breakaway Box 750/750ex  

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Magalainen
(@magalainen)
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As a follow-up to my thread (Why is there so little about the Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 650 OC?, https://egpu.io/forums/postid/89512/), I've kept a close eye on Sonnet and today they have come out with two new eGPU enclosures: 750 and 750ex.

Sonnet's own website of course has all the details as well with detailed pictures: https://www.sonnettech.com/product/egpu-breakaway-box/overview.html

My personal take: I see these as very interesting options, the 750 is clearly an update to the 650 OC, which itself was apparently a "half step" update to the original 650. The 750ex differentiates in having other I/O options (USB and Ethernet), at the cost of some of the power available for USB PD (85W vs. 100W). I also like the fact the PSU looks to be easily replaceable here as well.

How these are different to the earlier models remains to be seen. By the looks of it, both new models use an SFX sized PSU(?), unless my eyes are deceiving me. If true, that would mean only the lesser known 650 OC supports ATX sized PSUs, if that's something you care about.

Will we see a review of either model soon?

This topic was modified 6 months ago

ThinkPad T470 (Windows 10)
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itsage
(@itsage)
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@magalainen, While the footprint and design remains the same, these new models use ATX sized PSU. In one of the product photos, I could see the PSU fan and it looks like a 120mm fan. The Thunderbolt 3 mainboard layout looks similar to Mantiz Saturn Pro. I'm fairly confident they continue the partnership with TUL who is the manufacturer of all Sonnet eGFX products so far.

 

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Magalainen
(@magalainen)
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Ah, good to know! Yeah, I wasn't quite sure, but thanks for confirming. I'm loving these models already, but I would be interested to see if internally there's anything to warrant an upgrade over an existing unit (e.g. newer Thunderbolt chipset).

ThinkPad T470 (Windows 10)
Razer Core X + RX Vega 56


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hornedfrog
(@hornedfrog)
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Joined: 3 years ago
 

Anyone have one of these yet?  Looks like a revision to the layout and a full ATX PSU.  

https://www.sonnetstore.com/collections/egpu-enclosures/products/egpu-breakaway-box-750ex?variant=37770214801606

 

Mac mini 2018/i7/1TB/32GB RAM
Sonnet Breakaway Box 650W. Sapphire Vega 64 - (21275-03-20G card)
OWC Thunderbolt 3 14 port hub
AKiTiO Node Duo, 1 x Patriot Scorch M.2 512G SSD PCI-E 3.0 x 2 drive.


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hornedfrog
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So the original 650 had an sfx PSU and the 650 OC has the ATX PSU?

Mac mini 2018/i7/1TB/32GB RAM
Sonnet Breakaway Box 650W. Sapphire Vega 64 - (21275-03-20G card)
OWC Thunderbolt 3 14 port hub
AKiTiO Node Duo, 1 x Patriot Scorch M.2 512G SSD PCI-E 3.0 x 2 drive.


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Magalainen
(@magalainen)
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@hornedfrog, that is correct. In the 650 OC model, an ATX sized PSU is used. Except for the PSU, there's no difference between it and the Breakaway Box 750, except for some aesthetic changes.

I've reached out to Sonnet and they have confirmed the same Thunderbolt chipset is used in the new models as in the older 650 OC model. So there's no update in terms of the PCB components. Similarly, the new models still only support dual slot GPUs and not triple slot GPUs, which is a shame.

I'd wager most people would be interested in the 750ex, given its connectivity options that Sonnet hasn't ever provided before. It comes at the cost of USB PD only providing 85W as opposed to 100W, which is a shame. I can't imagine a 750W PSU being a limiting factor here, even if the most power hungry and overclocked GPU was being used.

There's something interesting in the compatibility chart: https://www.sonnettech.com/support/downloads/manuals/Compatibility_Graphics_Cards.pdf

At the very end, there's a mention of a "DuoModo eGPU" product, but Google didn't bring up any results. Is there perhaps a new model coming soon?

Either way, I think the ultimate eGPU has yet to be realized. Sonnet's 750ex is close, but I'd like to see another update with:

1. A newer Thunderbolt 3/4 chipset. Now that Maple Ridge host controllers are shipping ( https://www.anandtech.com/show/16333/intel-maple-ridge-thunderbolt-4-controller-now-shipping), it's only a matter of time before we see new laptops using it and there's already products shipping using the equivalent device controller, e.g. this one from OWC: https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/owc-thunderbolt-hub.

2. Support for triple slot GPUs.

3. USB PD always at 100W.

Well, the dream lives on...

This post was modified 5 months ago

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odin
 odin
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Posted by: @magalainen

@hornedfrog, that is correct. In the 650 OC model, an ATX sized PSU is used. Except for the PSU, there's no difference between it and the Breakaway Box 750, except for some aesthetic changes.

I've reached out to Sonnet and they have confirmed the same Thunderbolt chipset is used in the new models as in the older 650 OC model. So there's no update in terms of the PCB components. Similarly, the new models still only support dual slot GPUs and not triple slot GPUs, which is a shame.

I'd wager most people would be interested in the 750ex, given its connectivity options that Sonnet hasn't ever provided before. It comes at the cost of USB PD only providing 85W as opposed to 100W, which is a shame. I can't imagine a 750W PSU being a limiting factor here, even if the most power hungry and overclocked GPU was being used.

There's something interesting in the compatibility chart: https://www.sonnettech.com/support/downloads/manuals/Compatibility_Graphics_Cards.pdf

At the very end, there's a mention of a "DuoModo eGPU" product, but Google didn't bring up any results. Is there perhaps a new model coming soon?

Either way, I think the ultimate eGPU has yet to be realized. Sonnet's 750ex is close, but I'd like to see another update with:

1. A newer Thunderbolt 3/4 chipset. Now that Maple Ridge host controllers are shipping ( https://www.anandtech.com/show/16333/intel-maple-ridge-thunderbolt-4-controller-now-shipping), it's only a matter of time before we see new laptops using it and there's already products shipping using the equivalent device controller, e.g. this one from OWC: https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/owc-thunderbolt-hub.

2. Support for triple slot GPUs.

3. USB PD always at 100W.

Well, the dream lives on...

I'm interested to see how long it takes to get some TB4 enclosures so we can see if 32Gb Data rate changes anything for performance. I would imagine it will be about on par with the m.2 pcie egpus or the alienware graphics amplifier.

2018 17" LG Gram 17 [8th,4C,U] + RTX 2070 @ 32Gbps-TB3 (Sonnet Breakaway 550) + Win10 [build link]  

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hornedfrog
(@hornedfrog)
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Posted by: @magalainen

@hornedfrog, that is correct. In the 650 OC model, an ATX sized PSU is used. Except for the PSU, there's no difference between it and the Breakaway Box 750, except for some aesthetic changes.

I've reached out to Sonnet and they have confirmed the same Thunderbolt chipset is used in the new models as in the older 650 OC model. So there's no update in terms of the PCB components. Similarly, the new models still only support dual slot GPUs and not triple slot GPUs, which is a shame.

I'd wager most people would be interested in the 750ex, given its connectivity options that Sonnet hasn't ever provided before. It comes at the cost of USB PD only providing 85W as opposed to 100W, which is a shame. I can't imagine a 750W PSU being a limiting factor here, even if the most power hungry and overclocked GPU was being used.

There's something interesting in the compatibility chart: https://www.sonnettech.com/support/downloads/manuals/Compatibility_Graphics_Cards.pdf

At the very end, there's a mention of a "DuoModo eGPU" product, but Google didn't bring up any results. Is there perhaps a new model coming soon?

Either way, I think the ultimate eGPU has yet to be realized. Sonnet's 750ex is close, but I'd like to see another update with:

1. A newer Thunderbolt 3/4 chipset. Now that Maple Ridge host controllers are shipping ( https://www.anandtech.com/show/16333/intel-maple-ridge-thunderbolt-4-controller-now-shipping), it's only a matter of time before we see new laptops using it and there's already products shipping using the equivalent device controller, e.g. this one from OWC: https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/owc-thunderbolt-hub.

2. Support for triple slot GPUs.

3. USB PD always at 100W.

Well, the dream lives on...

Thank you for the information.

Mac mini 2018/i7/1TB/32GB RAM
Sonnet Breakaway Box 650W. Sapphire Vega 64 - (21275-03-20G card)
OWC Thunderbolt 3 14 port hub
AKiTiO Node Duo, 1 x Patriot Scorch M.2 512G SSD PCI-E 3.0 x 2 drive.


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Pressy
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I was able to grab a RTX3060 recently at MSRP and purchased a 750ex to setup an eGPU to use with a Dell XPS 13 9310(personal) and a Lenovo T490s(work).  The initial setup was very easy and so far the only issue I have had is needing to perform a full restart on the T490s to get the RTX3060 to be detected (it still sees the 750ex and any peripherals though the integrated USB hub). I'll try to post builds soon.

The product page lists the 750ex as having a second controller on to handle peripherals/Ethernet.

Sonnet also posted an interesting video on why they are not using TB4 on eGPUs and will be sticking to TB3 due to a PCIe limitation. They don't plan on transitioning to TB4 for any of their PCIe focused products, that change will be limited to docks. I'm curious if anyone can confirm this is why there have been no TB4 eGPU enclosures released from any manufacturers.

 

Let me know if you have any questions about the 750ex.

2021 13" Dell XPS 13 9310 [11th,4C,G] + RTX 3060 @ 32Gbps-TB4 (Sonnet Breakaway 750ex) + Win10 21H1 [build link]  

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joevt
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@pressy, that's interesting. So the Thunderbolt 4 peripheral controllers (Goshen Ridge) only have one lane of PCIe instead of the usual four. If Intel would publish proper specs, this wouldn't be a surprise and wouldn't need to be explained in a video. Actually, Intel does mention the single lane at https://ark.intel.com/content/www/us/en/ark/products/189982/intel-jhl8440-thunderbolt-4-controller.html Intel does not show this info for the earlier chips though.

I guess I missed that. Previously, I though Goshen Ridge might have the extra two Thunderbolt ports by removing the two DisplayPort sinks (inputs) that Maple Ridge has.

So, instead of using Goshen Ridge, could they use Maple Ridge in peripheral mode? That would have 4 lanes of PCIe like Titan Ridge and Alpine Ridge. Titan Ridge can be used in peripheral mode and keep the two DisplayPort sinks. Sonnet uses Titan Ridge for the Sonnet Puck 5700 and 5500 XT. Maple Ridge won't be suitable unless it includes a separate USB port like the Titan Ridge JHL7440 does.

It seems that after Alpine Ridge, starting with Titan Ridge, Intel made separate chips for host and peripheral (the set of chips that can be used as host controller does not overlap the set of chips that can be used for peripheral (device) mode.

This means Maple Ridge (JHL8540 and JHL8340 which might not exist) is only for hosts. Goshen Ridge (JHL8440) is only for devices.
https://newsroom.intel.com/news/introducing-thunderbolt-4-universal-cable-connectivity-everyone/#gs.0pbt4k
https://newsroom.intel.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/11/2020/07/intel-thunderbolt4-announcement-press-deck.pdf

Titan Ridge has the JHL7540 and JHL7340 for host and the JHL7440 for device.
https://thunderbolttechnology.net/sites/default/files/18-241_Thunder7000Controller_Brief_FIN_HI.pdf

The Alpine Ridge chips can be used in either mode.
https://thunderbolttechnology.net/sites/default/files/18-241_ThunderboltController_Brief_HI.pdf

 

Mac mini (2018), Mac Pro (Early 2008), MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015), GA-Z170X-Gaming 7, Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 580 8GB GDDR5, Sonnet Echo Express III-D, Trebleet Thunderbolt 3 to NVMe M.2 case


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