Gigabyte Gaming Box 580 Egpu mini review

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by alaman64, Aug 12, 2019.

  1. alaman64 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2017
    #1
    so yesterday I received my Gigabyte Gaming Box 580 egpu from amazon warehouse deals, for about $400. I was a little hesitant at firsts based on the many negative reviews, but I figured I had a 30 day window to return it if it did not work out.

    I also picked up a 3 foot tb3 cable also from amazon. Model was Plugable Thunderbolt 3 Cable 40Gbps.

    First the problem I encountered.

    1) thing is very noisy, it's got 2 small case fans that are always on full blast. and one more small one in the PSU. (that was a deal killer, but I figured I would give it a chance)

    2) Mojave would not always recognize the egpu, it was a constant plug and unplug, but once it worked, it worked. It just that if you had to reboot, well it might recognize the egpu or it might not.

    There where people doing case mods, changing the fans to quieter ones, not really for me.

    I then found the gigabyte had a firmware update, that took care of the 2 load case fans. problem is you need a windows PC with thunderbolt to get the firmware update. So I setup a boot camp on my mini hoping I would be able to update the firmware. It did not work. windows did not find the egpu, I then download ATI drivers, rebooted still not luck. Then I shut down unplug the monitor from the mini and plug it into the egpu. I reboot and windows recognizes the egpu and I'm able to update firmware.

    I reboot into OSX, with the egpu plugged in, there is no boot selection screen, (this is fixed in the latest Catalina beta). so you have to use the bootcamp tools to tell it to boot into osx.

    Long storey short, problem 1 solved noise is pretty much gone. enough where I do not notice it.

    Then it would not recognize the egpu again, I plug and unplug. Did that about 10 times, till I give up and went back to a shorter 1.5 foot tb3 cable. It worked, and it worked every time, no plug and plug. It was the cable that was causing problem #2.

    So now after 24 hours.

    no freezes, no noise, temps when running Heaven around 70 degrees and frames are at about 45 fps

    So far happy with the improvement.
     
  2. hagjohn macrumors 6502

    hagjohn

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #2
    The graphics card is embedded. Can you swap it out, when you want to upgrade to another card? I have a Sonnet 350W and I do not hear the fans really at all, except when it's booting. I haven't tried any hardcore gaming with it yet.
     
  3. alaman64 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2017
    #3
    you technically could, but it would have to be very small card to fit in the box. The box itself with PSU is about the same length as a Mac mini and about half it's width.
     
  4. purplealert macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2018
    Location:
    Devon, UK
    #4
    I have one of these boxes, but it had an Nvidia GTX1080 installed. After Apple prevented Nvidia providing drivers for Mojave I did pick up an MSI Radeon 4 GB RX 560 AERO ITX which was the right size and known to work in these systems. The GTX1080 got repurposed and is a fantastic performer, shame Apple won't support those cards on recent mac os. I never found the box overly noisy, but I think I did update the firmware in the early days.

    The thunderbolt cable supplied with all of these boxes is terrible, the one I had never worked and that seems to be the general consensus. If you do buy one of this family of eGPUs, factor in the cost of a quality thunderbolt cable for trouble free operation.
     

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3 August 12, 2019