Looking for clarification on what I've been reading
 
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tenraek
(@tenraek)
New Member
Joined: 3 years ago
 

So in trying to do due diligence and read through this site and others on whats going to work best for me, I need some clarification. It's been over a decade since I've bought a GPU solo, so trying to get back up to speed.

Right now I'm using my new 2018 Mac Mini with a basic 24" ASUS 1080 screen.

I'm not going to be doing any graphic/video work, just some light casual sims and games - mostly x-Plane but I want to get into some other titles just for fun, not real competitive. Grant I'm coming from a 2011 Mac Mini, but so  far I'm actually really impressed with trying the X-Plane Demo under Windows with the Intel 630 *Imagines the entire PC Gaming community gasping and clutching their pearls at such blasphemy*.

As I feel 5K is going to be overkill for me (Heck I know 4k under 28" is kind of pushing it), I've decided I'm going to upgrade my screen to the LG 27UK650-W + Razer Core X + RX 590 . I think this will put me in the sweet spot of price/performance for my needs.

I know the 590 is still relatively new, and the Navi is coming up too, so I think the the current four boards from ASUS, Sapphire, XFX, and Power Color is all we get for the 590.

The 3 main questions I have are:

1. If I do go 590, I really wanted to get the XFX Fatboy, but have read they don't always play nice with MacOS because they are custom boards (Ya I know no 590 is reference), is this still true in an eGPU setup? I don't need the RGB and such the ASUS give although I think they're a great brand but I don't want to pay for the bells and whistles I'm not going to use. Of the Sapphire and Power Color which one probably going to be the better fit. I see a lot of Mac eGPU folks going with Sapphire, but I also see a lot of quality issue reports on their cards.

2. Grant I probably won't be doing this until I get my tax return, but might I be better of waiting to see what Navi brings?

I might just save some $ and go with a 580 that been tried and tested as good, then save up for the Next Gen down the road, TB 4 might be out by then and might have a solution to the 20% tax TB3 currently imposes.

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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Yukikaze
(@yukikaze)
Noble Member Moderator
Joined: 5 years ago
 

The RX 590 is a card that is very much not worth it. Get a RX 580 for under 200$, which is their current street price. Paying another 80-100$ for a 10% performance increase is not a wise move.

Want to output 4K@60Hz out of an old system on the cheap? Read here.
Give your Node Pro a second Thunderbolt3 controller for reliable peripherals by re-using a TB3 dock (~50$).

"Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done, and why. Then do it."- Robert A. Heinlein, "Time Enough for Love."

 
2012 Mac Mini [3rd,4C,Q] + RX 480 @ 10Gbps-TB1 (Atto Thunderlink) + macOS 10.15.7 [build link]  


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Eightarmedpet
(@eightarmedpet)
Famed Member Moderator
Joined: 5 years ago

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itsage
(@itsage)
Founder Admin
Joined: 5 years ago
 

The Gigabyte RX 580 Gaming Box currently at $420 is the best value eGPU for macOS use. Your proposed setup Razer Core X + RX 590 would be $600 and about 10% higher performance. There's no sign of Thunderbolt 4 in 2019.

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external graphics card builds
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2021 13" ASUS ROG Flow X13 (RTX3050Ti) [R5K,8C,H] + RTX 3080 @ 64Gbps-XG (XG Mobile) + Win10 20H2 [build link]  


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Yukikaze
(@yukikaze)
Noble Member Moderator
Joined: 5 years ago
 

@itsage - There is something to be said for getting a normal sized eGPU enclosure and getting a regular RX580 for around 180$. Yes, it is more expensive, but it is also a lot more upgrade-able.

The Sonnet 550 is currently 279$ on Amazon. And the ASRock RX580 8GB is 185$ on Newegg with an extra pair of games = For 464$ that is a pretty neat setup that can also be upgraded later.

Want to output 4K@60Hz out of an old system on the cheap? Read here.
Give your Node Pro a second Thunderbolt3 controller for reliable peripherals by re-using a TB3 dock (~50$).

"Always listen to experts. They'll tell you what can't be done, and why. Then do it."- Robert A. Heinlein, "Time Enough for Love."

 
2012 Mac Mini [3rd,4C,Q] + RX 480 @ 10Gbps-TB1 (Atto Thunderlink) + macOS 10.15.7 [build link]  


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