Best eGPU for iMac Retina 5K (Late 2014)
 
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Best eGPU for iMac Retina 5K (Late 2014)  

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digitalinnovations
(@digitalinnovations)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

I am about to start experimenting with an external GPU for my Mac and I'm curious where is the point of diminishing returns on the best card to use? I am running OSX 10.12.6 on my iMac Retina 5K (Late 2014). Just for reference, I do not want to use this for a separate display; I only need to this to improve render / playback speeds in DaVinci Resolve and FCPX.

I was going to pickup Akitio Node and a GTX 1080 but I began to wonder if I would be able to take full advantage of the setup seeing as I am going from Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 via adapator (plus any other limitations I don't immediately know about).

I appreciate any advice.

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

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DANgerous25
(@danfalconar)
Estimable Member
Joined: 4 years ago
 

Hi there, I also have a late 2014 iMac 5k, using the TB2->Tb3 adapter with the Akitio Node. Originally I used a nVidia 980TI, then later upgraded to the 1080TI.  My application is different to yours, in that I am using an external screen and I'm using it for gaming of sorts. I thought the 980TI performance was excellent, but I still noticed an improvement [just visually] when I upgraded to the 1080TI. Benchmark improvements backed up the observation.

In short, I can recommend the 980TI and 1080TI... the 1080TI does make a difference although probably its full potential can't be reached. I suspect a similar story for the 1080 non-TI but I haven't tested.

You can read my guide on how to install here, which covers the pros/cons of this setup.

Good luck!

2017 27" iMac Pro (Vega64) [7th,10C,W] + GTX 1080 Ti @ 32Gbps-TB3 (AKiTiO Node) + macOS 10.13.2 [build link]  

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digitalinnovations
(@digitalinnovations)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Thank you, DANgerous25, for the reply!

It is great to know it can work and work well in second screen / gaming; I just wish I could find someone who used it purely for rendering / editing purposes as I don't need the second screen option. Someone in the thread you linked appeared to be doing just that but never came back to update if the problem he was having was solved and/or if it provided any improvements in render speed. I may try to post in that thread to ask and see if he'll give an update.

Thank you again!

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

.

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slinry
(@slinry)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Hey there, did you ever find out an answer to this? I'm in the same boat as you! Feel free to email me to continue the discussion: [email protected] (not .com, .co)

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

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deathtrapz
(@deathtrapz)
Eminent Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Theoretically it should work just fine without a display attached as it will usually accelerate the internal display. But however as it is 5K resolution I believe there is not enough bandwidth in the thunderbolt 2. But then again even if it is not accelerating the display you should be able to use it like a bitcoin miner, where there is no display output but the processing power is there. So I would suggest researching eGPU bitcoin mining because you should be able to apply the same concept.

2017 MBP 15" - Aorus Gaming Box 1070 - 2012 iMac 21.5"


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