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Author Topic: eGPU on a 2016 MBP in Windows?  (Read 4251 times)
binarypaladin
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« on: November 17, 2016, 04:25:57 AM »

Hey everyone. I'm pretty new here. I haven't messed with anything from around these parts since building a 10.6 Hackintosh ages ago.

I'm here because getting any answers or support from hardware manufacturers about the new MacBook Pros is contradictory or impossible. Reading around it seems like this place has actual answers.

I'm interested in using an eGPU on the nMBP. I ordered a 13" Touch Bar model that I expect will be in hand in a couple weeks. I would really like to hook up an eGPU, but I honestly only care about Windows support. I'm a web developer at no point do I find myself going, "Man, I really need more than integrated graphics," during a work day. However, I have a Bootcamp partition on my current MBP (2013 15" model) and use that for occasional gaming with friends. Obviously, the dGPU in this machine is much nicer than Intel's integrated option.

So:

1. As has been posted here and elsewhere, Apple—for whatever reason—decided not to support a horde of existing Thunderbolt 3 devices (thanks guys!). Can anyone confirm if this is a hardware limitation or a software limitation? (It seems to be the latter.) Will an "unsupported" device in macOS "just work" in Windows on the same hardware? (This appears to be yes, but if anyone can confirm, that would be great.) I'm guessing if it works in Windows I don't run the risk of damaging my laptop.

2. Since the nMBP has multiple TB3 ports, can I connect one of the ports to something like a Thunderbolt dock (I have the TB2 Elgato dock which works fine in Windows as well and I have a TB3->TB1/2 adapter from Apple) and another port to the eGPU but render through the dock port? This is just a convenience. Basically, at my workstation, I sit down, plug in to a dock and have my keyboard, mouse, Ethernet, drives, monitor, etc. Convenient. I'd like to have that, but when booting into Windows just plug in the eGPU and have at it without having to plug the monitor into the eGPU. I have no idea if that's possible. I did see on one of the Bizon Box videos for their TB2 offering (and I know what they're up to, I researched them after watching) that in Windows they at least claimed to render on the laptop monitor using the eGPU, so it seems at least in Windows you can use a different output but still harness an eGPU. I just have no idea how this works.

Obviously, real, actual, official support from Apple and an Apple-supported device would be ideal but that's not an option right now (and who knows if it'll ever be a real option).

I'm thinking of this: https://www.akitio.com/expansion/node

The price is good and since I already have a dock at my disposal, I need nothing but an eGPU box which makes it much more compelling (price-wise) than the Razer Core.
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Rominator
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« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2016, 04:26:52 AM »

Only working solution is on this board.

Read the thread with "Apple bones us yet again" in title.
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Rominator
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« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2016, 08:03:19 AM »

I just got 4th or 5th Nvidia eGPU on 2016 No touch bar going via Razer Core.

Just need folks with a brain and who can follow instructions.

No DSDT modding needed.

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binarypaladin
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« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2016, 09:06:59 AM »

Thanks for the information and the hard work. I'll likely have the laptop tomorrow and now have an idea about what equipment I need.

The only question I have is whether I need the display hooked up to the eGPU's output or if I can render via another output (specifically one of the other Thunderbolt ports).  It doesn't matter too much except for convenience purposes.

Again, thanks for the follow up. Reading this forum has been illuminating. When I have equipment that works, I'll share my results.
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« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2016, 11:21:03 PM »

Having the display info go back down the TB3 cable and then out another will GREATLY slow things down.

COnnect display to GPU whenever possible to avoid using up bandwidth
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binarypaladin
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« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2016, 06:04:26 AM »

Oh yeah. That perfect makes sense. Thanks.
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