eGPUs - Thoughts? - Skull Canyon NUC with Thunder3 PCIe Box.

Aibohphobia

Jessica. Wayward SFF.n Founder
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Feb 22, 2015
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Neat, I was thinking it'd be fun to livestream the CAD process of a case design so this would be a good project.

I was leaning toward internal PSU. I was thinking either the upcoming HDPLEX 300W AC-DC or FlexATX. With the latter @iFreilicht may be interested in collaborating to finally get a production run going for that FSP.

And if @ilovelampshade's custom board is done in the nearish future then maybe we could use that and have a 19V output on the dock to power a NUC/Mini-STX so you could have a Mini PC + eGPU stack with only one power cord.

But if you're paying it's whatever you want :p
 

Runamok81

Runner of Moks
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Jul 27, 2015
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As far as design, I think we're all on the same page. Internal PSU and whichever makes the most sense between Flex or HDPLEX. There's also exhaust cooling to think about... If we're all serious, it should probably end up as it's own thread. More fun that way. Watch the design in process, solicit design ideas from the forum.

To get the ball rolling, I've just placed an order for the AkiTiO Node. I'm not moneybags, but I can help get this thing moving. I think it would be a fun project, and maybe pickup the torch where the Wolfe project left off? Could you PM me a sheet metal ballpark before I get too far ahead? I'm fine with you in the driver's seat.
 

Aibohphobia

Jessica. Wayward SFF.n Founder
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Feb 22, 2015
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With Protocase it'd probably be around $400 for a one-off if it's a simple design like the STX160.0.

But Protocase is typically on the higher side of pricing and there's a local sheet metal shop I've been wanting to try that's well equipped, so it could be more like $200-$300 if we're lucky.

And if we can round up a few extra orders then the price per unit should go down quite a bit.
 

Runamok81

Runner of Moks
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Jul 27, 2015
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I can swing the $200-$300 to seed the project. Sounds like we wait on the AkiTiO Node to get shipped to me and I forward it to you. Estimate a week to me. Will you need the Gigabyte GTX 1070 and HDPlex 160W AC-DC, or should I use them in other builds? Right now, they just collect dust.
 

PNP

Airflow Optimizer
Oct 10, 2015
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Another monster surfaces:

http://www.nextpowerup.com/news/32942/msi-unveils-external-gpu-case-for-notebooks/

 

Phuncz

Lord of the Boards
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May 9, 2015
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It looks so dangerous. Is gaming supposed to have sharp edges and pointy features so you can lose a finger or an eye ? I thought those were important for gaming.
 
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BobyMadrox

Chassis Packer
Oct 23, 2016
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Hi,

I have a NUC6i7KYK currently and I was looking for adding a EVGA mini 1060 via an Akitio Thunder3.
I just saw your investigation claiming than the Skull Canyon made compromise for the alimentation of the thunderbolt 3.
I am powering a keyboard, a usb mouse, a headset and a samsung evo 500 go M.2 SSD on it.

I am not an expert and my question is how much I am gonna loose in raw power over a normal eGPU thunderbolt 3 working on a non limited chassis ?
Do you think it is still interesting to add an eGPU or I should seek out another solution ?
Will a EVGA mini 1060 fits the Akitio Thunder3 out of the box without modding ?

I feel a bit scammed right now as it has always been the plan for me, add an eGPU along the road, I wouldn't have bought it if I knew something was wrong with his thunderbolt3 alimentation...

Thanks
 

Runamok81

Runner of Moks
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Jul 27, 2015
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@BobyMadrox
ALL external eGPUs have a 10-15% performance loss compared to native cards. This includes the NUC, MacBooks, XPS, and other notebooks.

Yes, the GTX1060 will fit into the Akitio Thunder3. But fitting it is only half the battle.
You will need to modify the chassis to both power and cool the card. So yes, modifications are needed.

For power, you will need to solder some wires.


Foe hear and exhaust you will need to cut a 110mm hole for heat exhaust.



There is mod work required. This techinferno thread about how to do these modifications.
 
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BobyMadrox

Chassis Packer
Oct 23, 2016
15
2
Why the card is not alimented by the akitio thunder3, I mean there is a connector to power it on my computer, they don't give this with Akitio ?
 

Runamok81

Runner of Moks
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Good question. The Akitio isn't using a TB3 controller (L6540) that supplies 100W of power. I haven't seen any of the eGPU manufacturers using this type of controller, yet. They should.

Update: Looks like that 100W is for "system charging." A GPU has heavy power spikes and
draw downs. I don't think a TB3 chip is designed to handle those power demands. This spiking is why eGPU manufacturers use full PSUs to supply GPU power. Just an educated guess.

The Akitio Thunder3 was designed for SSDs or other low power cards. Modifications are needed to make it support high powered cards like GPUs. However, the Akitio Node IS designed for high power cards. A modified Thunder3 is popular on this forum because of it's small size. The Thunder3 is 2.64 Liters. The Node is 14.3 Liters!
 
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Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Feb 1, 2016
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JayzTwoCents just posted a really decent video on performance loss with eGPUs. It was actually more substantial than I anticipated

 
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BobyMadrox

Chassis Packer
Oct 23, 2016
15
2
Thanks for the informations mens.

That's exactly why I want an Akitio Thunder3 instead of the Node, Runamok81, what's the point of having a desktop sized chassis for a GPU
><.
I will be waiting for the Zotac eGPU which sould be releasing during this year before I make any decisions though, thoses mods seem well documented and accessible so why not.
 

|||

King of Cable Management
Sep 26, 2015
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JayzTwoCents just posted a really decent video on performance loss with eGPUs. It was actually more substantial than I anticipated


The issue I have with his testing is that it required the video signal to go back through the chipset to be converted back to LVDS to be displayed on the laptops display. I want to see what it's like with an external monitor connected directly into the eGPU.
 

Runamok81

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The issue I have with his testing is that it required the video signal to go back through the chipset to be converted back to LVDS to be displayed on the laptops display. I want to see what it's like with an external monitor connected directly into the eGPU.

Not sure why JayzTwoCents is getting different numbers?
The number I've seen repeated is 10-15% performance drop. Seen in this video here

and this article here

http://www.ultrabookreview.com/10761-razer-core-review/
I’ve been doing a lot of research since originally writing this section and there have been a number of things I found out over the past few weeks. The first thing to mention is the performance hit the Core takes as opposed to using a desktop. If you compare my desktop+970 readings to the Razer Blade+Core+970, you’ll notice a significant fps drop. The CPUs in both machines offer very similar performance scores in benchmark tests, so the only thing I can chalk off the performance hit to is losses through the thunderbolt connections/driver issues. So if you’re planning on using a particular graphics card and are comparing it to desktop benchmarks, expect to see a 10-15% performance drop right off the bat.
 

Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Feb 1, 2016
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Probably the power draw of the LEDs on the ASUS eGPU combined with the cathode on the front is under powering the device. But hey, who needs performance when your enclosure looks like an alien spaceship and has more LEDs than any other enclosure.
 
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BobyMadrox

Chassis Packer
Oct 23, 2016
15
2
I got a little question about thoses GPU in eGPU devices.
How much difference do you think a 1060 3G VS a 1060 6G version makes in thoses cases ? Is this similar to the desktop ones ?