Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box eGPU Advise

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ilyasdesign37, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. ilyasdesign37 macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #1
    Hi need some advise.......

    Will this eGPU work with this mac? Plug and play or is there is additional parts to purchase? and can I use the iMac screen or I have use ex-display?


    Mac specs - Apple iMac late 2013 3.5 GHz Intel Core i7 GTX 780M/ 24GB PCIe Flash Drive – High MacOS 10.12.6 Sierra

    I spoke to a tech staff at BIZON they told me this would be the best best package for me
    below...............

    The best option for your tasks would be - This configuration includes everything:
    Code:
    https://bizon-tech.com/us/sonnet-egfx-breakaway-box#470:1616;472:1622,1624;481:1660;483:1664;669:2604
    For $795, you will get the Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box, GTX 1080 graphics card, an Apple Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter and a Thunderbolt 2 cable.
    I recommend you to upgrade to Windows 10, Windows 7 is not compatible with eGPUs.


    There is no need to purchase any additional software. You will get a detailed step-by-step installation manual. You will be able to use the iMac screen.



    Then from Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box eGPU support team


    There is no official support for your setup of Thunderbolt 2, and the Sierra Operating System.
    That being said, we do have an old setup guide that may or may not help you. You can find it here.
    Please be aware of these other issues with compatibility.
    1) Nvidia drivers are currently not supported for use as an eGPU on Mac. See here.
    2) Only certain GPU’s will work in certain breakaway boxes, and several will not work on MacOS. See here for a full compatibility list.
    3) If you want plug-and-play ability, use these select AMD graphics cards.
    4) Keep in mind these can only work in 10.12.6 - 10.13.3. Apple has officially dropped support for TB2 Macs like yours in 10.13.4, so you could never update past 10.13.3. For that you need to upgrade to a TB3 Mac.
    If you are an expert user, and must to use this setup, please refer to egpu.io under the software tab, and choose MacOS.
    Keep in mind that neither Apple nor Sonnet can support egpu.io or other setups at the current time.
    Despite all of these current caveats, we expect support and compatibility to grow over time.




    I would be grateful if you can advise as I'm confused now on what will work
    Many Thanks
     
  2. mcnallym macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2008
    #2
    You are going to be looking at egpu.io to get this working if on Mac OS.

    Bizon are saying windows 10, for what you want..

    Wether people like it or not then amd is where Mac OS is at in terms of gpu support.
     
  3. tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    $800 for an EGPU over TB2? I would put that money into a new machine. TB3 has twice the bandwidth of TB2 and GPUs will loose about 10% over TB3 so you will be loosing a lot of performance that its just not worth thinking about at that price.
     
  4. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #4
    I'm from UK don't mine but i'm a fan Nvidia not AMD, most new iMacs have AMD, not going to do intense design work or gaming! most graphic cards and eGPU are expensive anyway!

    this a package deal
     
  5. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    California
    #5
    You really shouldn't be considering an eGPU solution over thunderbolt 2. You will not get any speedup, despite having a more powerful graphics card in your eGPU enclosure, simply because the bandwidth of thunderbolt 2 is not sufficient.

    Further, if you want to run an NVIDIA card in an eGPU, you NEED to run Windows 10, not macOS, unless you want to tinker with system settings to whitelist your card. eGPU.io has details on this.

    I would advise that you DON'T buy the eGPU. Save up for a better Mac.
     
  6. tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    I’m from the UK too you quoted in dollars.

    But there’s your problem Apple supports ati and the 1080 will run about as well as a rx580 on a Mac with current driver support in Mac OS which is roughly 2/3s the power it’s capable of. You then loose another 40+% over TB2 as it only supports 20gb/S vs 40gb/S of TB3 a graphics card will saturate a TB3 connection and loose 10%.

    With an iMac you can’t get an external graphics card to accelerate an internal display natively and you loose more bandwidth as the data has to travel back and forth through the same cable rather than out.

    At the end of the day any ati card in an iMac will be far quicker than your proposed work around. So that $800 is a complete waste of money as you might get 30% of its potential power because of your bottlenecks.
     
  7. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

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    California
    #7
    @tomscott1988 means AMD when he says ATI, for those of us that only remember ATI as something from their childhood. :)
     
  8. tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

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    UK
  9. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #9

    ok I understand, don't like the new iMacs, don't know why apple dumped NVIDIA cards
    might look into hackintosh!

    btw how comes you only see a lot video of mac laptops with eGPU and only iMac pro with eGPU?
     
  10. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    California
    #10
    Apple dumped NVIDIA due to a legal dispute over the RMA process. Back in 2012 there were major NVIDIA card faults in the MacBook Pro, and NVIDIA refused to accept fiscal responsibility due to the verbiage of the contract signed with Apple. Apple has been AMD exclusive ever since. It never was any official reason, the two companies just dislike each other enough that they keep their worlds separate, to the loss of the consumers, in my opinion. We may never see another NVIDIA card in a Mac again.
     
  11. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #11
    Damm, would had been nice if they did on the new iMac 2019/20

    i goes my iMac was the last and only one
    --- Post Merged, Feb 26, 2019 ---

    how good is your iMac Pro, 18 Cores, Vega 64, 128 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD via bootcamp?
     
  12. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    California
    #12
    I haven't tried it in bootcamp actually, but I hear it performs very well. I tend to just use Windows in a virtual machine.
     
  13. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #13
    did you spend £5 or 8K on your iMac? i know that model is too expensive

    i been watching this guys video don't know how he makes the eGPU work on many models etc

    Code:
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyOYYXm5u0JoMVxXFJSKsNg
     
  14. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    California
    #14
    I ordered mine the day orders were available, and was one of the first 18 core models delivered. It cost 10,690.56$ (USD) after sales tax and Apple Care +, but I was able to write off most of the cost in my taxes, so the real effective cost to me was around 4,000$ or so.
     
  15. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #15

    wow that's expensive!
     
  16. giffut, Feb 28, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019

    giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #16
    That statement is absolutely wrong.

    You might loose about 25% in performance compared to the maximum bandwith the card provides on paper, BUT: In real world practice it doesn't matter much, if at all.

    For gaming any mac sold today by Apple can be outperformed by choosing a stronger GPU and use it via thunderbolt/eGPU with a mac much older.

    A real performance increase via eGPU acceleration comes in apps like DaVinci, Dx0 or Final Cut Pro, especially running older macs.

    I myself use a Sonnet 550 eGPU case with a AMD RX560 attached via Thunderbolt 1 to a Macbook Pro 15 (2011). The graphic performance is at least 10x faster than the internal dGPU. I actually can cut 4K footage from a Panasonic FZ1000 and get close to the performances compared to current iMacs or Macbook Pros.

    The eGPU is a vaible, economic and efficient way to extend the usefulness of old hardware. The best performance/price overall for mac applications is using an AMD RX580. Any eGPU case will work fine.

    If you plan to run Windows 10 for apps or gaming, get a NVIDIA card, the 1080 series is your best bet at the moment. Depending on your budget, anything goes.

    NVIDIA cards are not supported on mac os 10.14 (mojave) yet; you would need to stay on 10.13 (high sierra) or 10.12 (sierra).
     
  17. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #17
    Don't spend $800 for a "box" for an old iMac.

    Get a NEW 5k 27" i7 iMac with an SSD inside...
    or
    Wait for the 2019 iMacs later this summer.
     
  18. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502a

    SecuritySteve

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    California
    #18
    There is a difference between a laptop from 2011 and an iMac from 2013's graphics card performance. His machine would likely not see a significant speedup, due to the limitation of bandwidth. But yes, thank you for your inflammatory statement with your own personal story that has very little to do with his case.

    Please post your benchmarks to prove that you are actually getting 10x speeds over thunderbolt 1 from your dGPU though. That would be impressive. Otherwise this is all just hyperbole.
     
  19. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #19
    You will see a tremenduous speedup and be on par with most hardware sold today, for a fraction of the cost.

    If you have money to burn, go and buy a new machine from Apple.

    If your budget is tight, be reasonable and resourceful and try an eGPU.

    You dont' need to replace your iMac yet, that's ridiculous. Yours got plenty of guts left

    Thunderbolt 1/2 port hardware is perfectly capable to run an eGPU of any kind.

    Check egpu.io forums for any help or inspiration.
     
  20. ilyasdesign37, Feb 28, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019

    ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #20
    I think their is away around just need to do more research!

    I did have the 2017 just didn't like the AMD card they over heat
    --- Post Merged, Feb 28, 2019 ---

    the new iMac design would be nice but will have AMD card which only mid range cards unlike NVIDIA cards!
    --- Post Merged, Feb 28, 2019 ---
    many thanks for info thats what tech guy said at BIZON - NVIDIA GTX 1080, 8 GB, DVI, 3 DP, HDMI (2560 CUDA Cores) memory - 10bps
    Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 350W, I don't need too much power as I'm not a heavy game user

    yeh will stay 10.13 (high sierra)

    overall package deal $795
     
  21. mikehalloran macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2018
    Location:
    The Sillie Con Valley
    #21
    Apple dumped support for eGPU over everything except TB3 in OS 10.13.4. With Mojave, they put some of the functionality back but only TB3 is supported officially.

    The main reason, as has been stated, is that with limited bandwidth, no one had it working really well. So, anything less than TB3, you pays your money and takes your chances.

    As for hackintosh, every Apple Engineer I know has built one. None I know treat it as anything other than a toy that they have to keep fiddling with to make current..
     
  22. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #22
    It is a simple software lock, nothing more. It got nothing to do with bandwith limitation.

    Even thunderbolt 3 is much too starved in i/o to utilize a gpu to its full potential. For games you might see an overal decrease of about 20-30% in framerates compared to a fully supported pcie interfaced gpu card. Another 10-20% comes from OSX redundancies in their kernel software. For games you always must run windows to get the best perfomance, be it egpu or internal gpu.

    I could game 15fps-30fps with my macbooks dgpu, but with the egpu I get between 60-90fps, around 5x the speed. For software acceleration it is more then 10x. That´s a huge difference.

    I use a thunderbolt 1 connection with a egpu and it works flawlessly. But I had to unlock it because Apple didn´t want me to use it. I run it with Davince Resolve and Final Cut X mostly.

    With a dgpu present you can´t utilize its full potential within mac os. That´s why many macbook pro users with vega report that external egpu support is abysmal - but this is a software limitation and a conscious choice by Apple.

    They also don´t offer first party hardware egpu cases or thundebrolt docks, nevertheless interfacing third party hardware does have trouble interfacing with Apples mediocre software/hardware support. But also the whole USB-C standard is a mess in terms of interoperability.

    Keep in mind: Apple is not really supporting egpu functionality 100%, so I am wary of their commitment. I lost lot of trust in recent years with them, regarding stability and quality in software and hardware.

    Basically Apple now completely puts the burden on third parties, while they got lazy developing their USB-C/thunderbolt 3 i/o rock solid. Their hardware/software reliability is no longer top notch, but just good enough.

    Actually egpu functionality is much more stable using windows 10 - crazy, right?
     
  23. spheris, Mar 8, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2019

    spheris macrumors member

    spheris

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2018
    Location:
    The American Empire
    #23
    You are out of luck with a thunderbolt 1 or 2 link, There's just not enough bandwidth available that the capabilities were developed on those platforms. The method described by support means that you would be running a pci16x video display at just under usb3.1 (5-10GB) specs. Roughly 1/8 to 1/4 of Thunderbolt 3's bidirectional capacity.
     
  24. ilyasdesign37 thread starter macrumors regular

    ilyasdesign37

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2014
    #24

    So their is hope it may work for me just tricks with software etc?
     
  25. giffut macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    #25
    This is the place you start with, regarding all information, practice and trouble shooting around egpu usage:

    https://egpu.io
     

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26 February 25, 2019