AKiTiO Node Thunderbolt 3 eGPU

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Chocomonsters, Oct 29, 2016.

  1. Chocomonsters macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 22, 2007
    #1
    Hope either new announced AKiTiO Node TB3 eGPU or available Razer Core TB3 eGPU will be compatible solution for new MacBook Pro.

    AKiTiO is cheaper ($300 vs $500) but has smaller PSU (400W vs 500W) and missing RJ45/USB 3 connections. No ETA yet.

    https://www.akitio.com/expansion/node
     
  2. killawat macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2014
    #2
    Oh cool, they finally posted it on the site.

    I don't think the extra ports are going to be missed on the Node, and the price is very very reasonable considering people have already been purchasing the Thunder2s and Thunder3s for a while now, for the same price but needing to do extra mods (external PSUs and such) for high powered cards. Add in the fact that all Thunderbolt Macs should be compatible (TB1/2 will just be slower but don't quote me), I think Akitio have a hit on their hands.
     
  3. Rkuda macrumors regular

    Rkuda

    Joined:
    May 23, 2016
    #3
    Awesome! Thanks for the heads up about the Akitio Node.

    Hoping the 460 in the MBP will be sufficient for a few months but I want to get in some eGPU stuff next year. Maybe after the Vega/Volta stuff is out and with luck a 2nd gen VR headset.
     
  4. theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    #4
  5. ultraman982 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 24, 2007
    #5
    Did you get yours direct from AKiTiO for early testing or from B&H? Also keep us posted, very curious in the Windows results to see if we can expect similar level of plug and play as the Core.
     
  6. krendel macrumors newbie

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    Jun 23, 2015
    #6
  7. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    Dec 13, 2004
    #7
    Anyone try plugging this into a TB2-capable MBP with the apple adapter?
     
  8. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #8
    what do i need to connect my thunderbolt 2 computer to this? it seems most adapters are for a thunderbolt 3 machine to tb2 devices
     
  9. ihatetoregister macrumors 6502

    ihatetoregister

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  10. theitsage, Dec 18, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2016

    theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #10
    The AKiTiO Node uses Texas Instrument TPS65983 USB-C/Thunderbolt controller which is fully compatible with macOS and 2016 MacBook Pro. Problem is there's a software block in macOS to prevent eGPU from working through this very controller. I confirmed this by trying a PCIe Flash SSD which works immediately. No luck with a graphics card.

    Apple went as far as rolling out Thunderbolt 3 enclosure block on all Thunderbolt equipped Macs with the latest macOS 10.12.2. This means Razer Core, AKiTiO Thunder3 which have the older TPS65982 controller will show the Unsupported message not only on 2016 MacBook Pros but also on all Thunderbolt Macs. There's currently a workaround for this TPS65982 TB3 enclosure block (discovered by kid2010 on netkas).

    I really hope Apple would allow eGPU in its next update or the eGPU community can find a workaround soon. My 2016 MacBook Pro works great with this AKiTiO Node in Windows 10. This eGPU setup is running with a GTX 980 Ti Hybrid and able to power the internal display. Check out Valley benchmark video here.

    2016-macbook-pro-akitio-node-gtx-980-ti-egpu-benchmark.jpg

    You can use Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter. However, it won't work in macOS atm due to Apple's restriction mentioned above. It may work in Windows 10. I'd recommend going with the AKiTiO Thunder2 for older Macs. If you plan on future proofing your eGPU enclosure, go with the Thunder3. I've used it successfully with a 2015 11" MBA and 2011 17" MacBook Pro via the TB3<-->TB2 adapter. It even works in Windows 10.
     
  11. padaxax macrumors member

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    Oct 31, 2015
  12. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #12
    Why Thunder 3 vs the node?
     
  13. theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #13
    It's not plug-n-play but it has gotten much easier compared to other eGPU builds. For my non-touchbar 13" MBP, I have to disable the PCIe bridge for the iSight webcam in order to make this eGPU work. After I saw "Microsoft Video Adapter" in Device Manager, I simply pointed to the Nvidia driver folder for Windows to install the right drivers.

    AKiTiO Thunder3 uses the older TI82 controller which is not blocked for eGPU use in macOS. It also works great with the Apple TB3<-->TB2 adapter in macOS and Windows 10. I can't say the same for AKiTiO Node with its newer TI83 controller.
     
  14. KabalWE macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    #14
    A greeting to all.
    I read all the answers and then I came to the conclusion that I can buy the Akitio Node with Apple adapter TB3/TB2 to use it with my Macbook Pro 13 "of 2011 that the TB2 door without problems. Is this correct?
     
  15. theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #15
    It's not as straight forward but should be possible with a couple workarounds.

    The AKiTiO Node is now working in macOS with all Late 2016 MacBook Pro. Here's a quick video of it running with a 15" MacBook Pro and a GTX 980 Ti. For further info and development, check out https://egpu.io/forums/

     
  16. SoyCapitanSoyCapitan macrumors 68040

    SoyCapitanSoyCapitan

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    Jul 4, 2015
    #16
    Fantastic. Does Akitio support the Node if you flashed it with the new firmware from Ti?
     
  17. borgusio macrumors regular

    borgusio

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #17
    Things are getting better and easier by the day:


    Once the Macbook 12 supports thunderbolt 3, I may substitute my mac mini with an AKITIO node plus OWC docking station and my Macbook 2015 with the new Macbook
    .
     
  18. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #18
    FAIL

    I was thinking about buying the Node to replace my original Akitio but it does not support daisy chain.
     
  19. cheezeit macrumors 6502

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    Jul 10, 2010
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    #19
    Wouldn't the Akitio node + OWC thunder 3 dock be more expensive than say a PowerColor Devil box? I too was looking at a docking solution and possible eGPU. Came across the Power Color Devil Box and it seems to be a combination on the two. eGPU with extra ports all in one. Thoughts?
     
  20. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #20
    Having something that is not a pure PCIe box is asking for trouble and incompatibility.
     
  21. theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #21
    It's possible to use an eGPU to power the internal display on Mac laptops. Full instructions here.

     
  22. john.simatos macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2017
    #22
    I was thinking of doing the same but I cannot for the life of me find one for sale anywhere. Let us know if you find one haha
     
  23. theitsage macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #23
    There are more eGPU enclosures coming in Q2. Intel could have sped up the certification process but that doesn't seem to be the case. Besides the PowerColor Devil Box, Mantiz Venus is another eGPU enclosure with extra ports as well as SATA connection.

    I've been testing the Mantiz's Thunderbolt 3 main board and daughter board with the I/Os. It's capable of charging a TB3 laptop (60W), adding more ports (5 USB 3.0, 1 Ethernet, external SSD through SATA), and boosting graphics performance. All done through one Thunderbolt 3 cable.

    mantiz-tb3-board-expansion-board.jpg

    mantiz-tb3-rx-470-egpu-external-ssd-components.jpg
     

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