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Looking for an egpu case and suitable graphics card(s) [Alienware R3]
 

Looking for an egpu case and suitable graphics card(s) [Alienware R3]  

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(@the_radiant)
New Member
Joined: 3 months ago
 

I have an Alienware R3 laptop which I've had for 4 years now and is in desperate need of an upgrade. I want to get an egpu and graphics card, as since I have a laptop I cannot simply replace the current graphics card.

I have done a bit of research and stumbled upon the Alienware Graphics Amplifier. It turns out that the eGPU does not use thunderbolt 3. Does this matter? My laptop has a thunderbolt 3 port and multiple USB ports.

My Specs for my laptop if required:
Proccessor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6700HQ CPU @ 2.60GHz 2.59GHz
Installed RAM 12GB
Current Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
System type: x64

If I shouldn't get the Alienware case, then which one should I get? I don't care for RGB lights or anything like that. I don't care for portability. I primarily care for power, future proofing and easy of use.

Also what graphics card should I get? Should I stick with NIVIDIA? I like NIVIDIA

Thanks for your time and your comments.

This topic was modified 3 months ago

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts


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Boltoway
(@boltoway)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
 

Based on your specifications I believe you are using a late 2015 Alienware 17 R3 (Correct me if I am wrong.)

At the rear of your laptop you should have a port that looks like this one on the left. This is the proprietary Alienware Graphics Amplifier port. 

You should by all means use the Alienware graphics amplifier, for two reasons: 1, it is actually slightly faster than Thunderbolt 3 eGPU's because it connects straight to the CPU and 2, you might run into some issues in getting the Alienware to accept a normal Thunderbolt 3 Enclosure. 

Stick with NVIDIA, that way you won't need to install drivers from different providers, and the setttings and interface will remain the same. 

To take full advantage of the graphics card, particularly over the 970M you have installed already, I would suggest getting no less than a GTX 1070 and running it into an external monitor.

Alienware make excellent laptops, and their Graphics Amplifier is an excellent solution. The specifications of your machine are more than capable of lasting many more years, with the only downfall being your graphics card.

Look for second hand Graphics Amplifier boxes online in your area, I have seen some go for very cheap! 

Make sure you make a build and upload it to this site, will be interested in seeing what you make of it. All the best with the build! 

Dell XPS 13 9380 (i7-8565U, 16GB RAM, 1TB Samung 970 Evo Plus) + Razer Core X + AMD RX VEGA 64 Limited Edition + Acer Nitro 27" VG271UP


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(@the_radiant)
New Member
Joined: 3 months ago
 
Posted by: Boltoway

Based on your specifications I believe you are using a late 2015 Alienware 17 R3 (Correct me if I am wrong.)

At the rear of your laptop you should have a port that looks like this one on the left. This is the proprietary Alienware Graphics Amplifier port. 

You should by all means use the Alienware graphics amplifier, for two reasons: 1, it is actually slightly faster than Thunderbolt 3 eGPU's because it connects straight to the CPU and 2, you might run into some issues in getting the Alienware to accept a normal Thunderbolt 3 Enclosure. 

Stick with NVIDIA, that way you won't need to install drivers from different providers, and the setttings and interface will remain the same. 

To take full advantage of the graphics card, particularly over the 970M you have installed already, I would suggest getting no less than a GTX 1070 and running it into an external monitor.

Alienware make excellent laptops, and their Graphics Amplifier is an excellent solution. The specifications of your machine are more than capable of lasting many more years, with the only downfall being your graphics card.

Look for second hand Graphics Amplifier boxes online in your area, I have seen some go for very cheap! 

Make sure you make a build and upload it to this site, will be interested in seeing what you make of it. All the best with the build! 

Thanks for your swift response.  You mention that I should get at least a GTX 1070. I'm really not to familiar with graphics cards in terms of the nomenclature. Could you perhaps produce a list of NIVIDIA Graphics Cards at different price points, starting of course with the GTX 1070. The egpu case is relatively cheap as you've said, so I can focus more on getting a great graphics card. , not just the bare minimum.
I will defiantly upload the completed build!

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts


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Boltoway
(@boltoway)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
 
Posted by: The Radiant
Posted by: Boltoway

Based on your specifications I believe you are using a late 2015 Alienware 17 R3 (Correct me if I am wrong.)

At the rear of your laptop you should have a port that looks like this one on the left. This is the proprietary Alienware Graphics Amplifier port. 

You should by all means use the Alienware graphics amplifier, for two reasons: 1, it is actually slightly faster than Thunderbolt 3 eGPU's because it connects straight to the CPU and 2, you might run into some issues in getting the Alienware to accept a normal Thunderbolt 3 Enclosure. 

Stick with NVIDIA, that way you won't need to install drivers from different providers, and the setttings and interface will remain the same. 

To take full advantage of the graphics card, particularly over the 970M you have installed already, I would suggest getting no less than a GTX 1070 and running it into an external monitor.

Alienware make excellent laptops, and their Graphics Amplifier is an excellent solution. The specifications of your machine are more than capable of lasting many more years, with the only downfall being your graphics card.

Look for second hand Graphics Amplifier boxes online in your area, I have seen some go for very cheap! 

Make sure you make a build and upload it to this site, will be interested in seeing what you make of it. All the best with the build! 

Thanks for your swift response.  You mention that I should get at least a GTX 1070. I'm really not to familiar with graphics cards in terms of the nomenclature. Could you perhaps produce a list of NIVIDIA Graphics Cards at different price points, starting of course with the GTX 1070. The egpu case is relatively cheap as you've said, so I can focus more on getting a great graphics card. , not just the bare minimum.

I will defiantly upload the completed build!

I can't really produce a list that would be accurate to you, as I do not know your location or budget. In saying that a 1070 is by no means low end, I was merely using it as an example of what would be the minimum I would recommend to really see an advantage over your 970m. All the best with your build.

Dell XPS 13 9380 (i7-8565U, 16GB RAM, 1TB Samung 970 Evo Plus) + Razer Core X + AMD RX VEGA 64 Limited Edition + Acer Nitro 27" VG271UP


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(@the_radiant)
New Member
Joined: 3 months ago
 
Posted by: Boltoway
Posted by: The Radiant
Posted by: Boltoway

Based on your specifications I believe you are using a late 2015 Alienware 17 R3 (Correct me if I am wrong.)

At the rear of your laptop you should have a port that looks like this one on the left. This is the proprietary Alienware Graphics Amplifier port. 

You should by all means use the Alienware graphics amplifier, for two reasons: 1, it is actually slightly faster than Thunderbolt 3 eGPU's because it connects straight to the CPU and 2, you might run into some issues in getting the Alienware to accept a normal Thunderbolt 3 Enclosure. 

Stick with NVIDIA, that way you won't need to install drivers from different providers, and the setttings and interface will remain the same. 

To take full advantage of the graphics card, particularly over the 970M you have installed already, I would suggest getting no less than a GTX 1070 and running it into an external monitor.

Alienware make excellent laptops, and their Graphics Amplifier is an excellent solution. The specifications of your machine are more than capable of lasting many more years, with the only downfall being your graphics card.

Look for second hand Graphics Amplifier boxes online in your area, I have seen some go for very cheap! 

Make sure you make a build and upload it to this site, will be interested in seeing what you make of it. All the best with the build! 

Thanks for your swift response.  You mention that I should get at least a GTX 1070. I'm really not to familiar with graphics cards in terms of the nomenclature. Could you perhaps produce a list of NIVIDIA Graphics Cards at different price points, starting of course with the GTX 1070. The egpu case is relatively cheap as you've said, so I can focus more on getting a great graphics card. , not just the bare minimum.

I will defiantly upload the completed build!

I can't really produce a list that would be accurate to you, as I do not know your location or budget. In saying that a 1070 is by no means low end, I was merely using it as an example of what would be the minimum I would recommend to really see an advantage over your 970m. All the best with your build.

Somewhere within the £300-£450 price range. And would all of the NVIDIA cards be compatible with the Alienware graphic amplifier.

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts


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itsage
(@itsage)
Famed Member Admin
Joined: 3 years ago
 

Get a used GTX 1080 Ti once the RTX Super launch in a few days.

Best ultrabooks for eGPU use

eGPU enclosure buying guide


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Boltoway
(@boltoway)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
 

I agree with @itsage, a second hand GTX 1080 Ti paired with your laptop would produce outstanding performance for a very affordable solution.

Dell XPS 13 9380 (i7-8565U, 16GB RAM, 1TB Samung 970 Evo Plus) + Razer Core X + AMD RX VEGA 64 Limited Edition + Acer Nitro 27" VG271UP


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