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US$300 AKiTiO Node TB3 eGFX box (32Gbps-TB3)

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AKiTiO Node - Finally an affordable eGPU box

 

akitio node features

The Thunderbolt™ 3 eGXF box is a low cost expansion chassis designed to house an external graphics card. Connected to the computer via Thunderbolt 3, the additional GPU power instantly upgrades a regular laptop or a mini PC and makes it possible to do things that would normally require a high-end workstation or gaming computer. For video editors and colorists, the dedicated GPU reduces the time it takes to render the footage, a computer that was not powerful enough for a VR headset is now potentially VR ready and for those that like to play games, these can now run at much higher frame rates than before.

Features
  • Thunderbolt™ 3 for lighting fast transfer speeds up to 40 Gbps
  • 1 PCIe (x16) slot supporting full-length, full-height, double-width cards
  • Spacious enclosure for use with standard and large sized graphics cards
  • Built-in 400W SFX power supply to provide extra power to GPU
  • PCIe x16 slot supplying up to 75W of power
  • 4 lane PCI Express 3.0 compliant interface
  • Removable back panel for double-width cards
  • Carry handle to easily transport the device

4 Lane PCI Express 3.0 Compliant Interface

akitio node gpu card

Supports standard and large sized PCIe Gen3 x4 cards

The PCIe (x16) slot accepts full-length, full-height, double-width cards with enough space available inside the enclosure for both standard and large sized graphics cards. The four PCIe Gen3 lanes and the Thunderbolt 3 interface are capable of transfer rates up to 40Gbps, providing enough bandwidth even for the most demanding PCIe cards.

Extra power for graphics cards

akitio node psu

400W SFX PSU

The built-in power supply provides enough power for the AKiTiO Node (~10W) as well as for graphics cards. If the standard 75W through the PCIe slot is insufficient, two extra pairs of 8-pin power connectors are available inside the AKiTiO Node that can be connected to the GPU, providing a total of about 390W.

The power of external GPUs

akitio node benchmark

Thunderbolt™ 3

Thunderbolt 3 brings Thunderbolt to USB-C at speeds up to 40 Gbps, creating one compact port that does it all – delivering the fastest, most versatile connection to any dock, display, or data device. In combination with the AKiTiO Node, this makes it possible to instantly upgrade your regular laptop or Mini-PC and achieve a performance that usually requires high-end workstations or specialized gaming computers.

 

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Pretty cool that you found it so fast. We just barely announced it here at the US office. :whistle: More details coming soon!

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Cool! Would be nice if you had a variant with a handle on top :)

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
 

Edited by rene_canlas
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Good job AKiTiO!

Looks way better than the pink/purple thing you did show before ^^

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9 hours ago, rene_canlas said:

Cool! Would be nice ifvyou had a variant with a handle on top :)

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
 

 

Noted! It has been on our lists of features.

 

1 hour ago, Dschijn said:

Good job AKiTiO!

Looks way better than the pink/purple thing you did show before ^^

 

Thanks! Ahaha. The purple unit was a showfloor demo unit. We just wanted to be out of the ordinary and attract people! 

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11 hours ago, DanKnight said:

 

Noted! It has been on our lists of features.

 

 

Thanks! Ahaha. The purple unit was a showfloor demo unit. We just wanted to be out of the ordinary and attract people! 

 

It also looks a little smaller on the pictures, did you ditch the water cooling support or just shrink it a bit without losing that feature?

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So you're testing it with different gpus from amd and nvidia. That's great but what about different devices? Is it only skull canyon? Wondering about compatibility with the upcoming mb pro. Can it be tested now using tb3 to tb2 adapter?

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On 9/23/2016 at 3:16 PM, Splitframe said:

 

It also looks a little smaller on the pictures, did you ditch the water cooling support or just shrink it a bit without losing that feature?

 

We shrunk it enough that there is still enough room for the pipes and a radiator in the front.

 

10 hours ago, Ness said:

So you're testing it with different gpus from amd and nvidia. That's great but what about different devices? Is it only skull canyon? Wondering about compatibility with the upcoming mb pro. Can it be tested now using tb3 to tb2 adapter?

 

Currently in the US office, we are testing on the Skull Canyon and Razer Blade Stealth. We haven't ran tests on the upcoming MacBook Pro because Apple hasn't announced anything about it having Thunderbolt 3.

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DanKnight,

 

Can you release info on the maximum dimensions for a GPU that it can accommodate? What's the wattage of the PSU that it will be coming with? Dual PCIE 6+2? Price?

Sorry for the bunch of questions! 

 

Cheers!

 

Rene

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15 hours ago, DanKnight said:

 

We shrunk it enough that there is still enough room for the pipes and a radiator in the front.

 

That sounds interesting. Are talking about radiators for watercooled GPUs?

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22 hours ago, rene_canlas said:

DanKnight,

 

Can you release info on the maximum dimensions for a GPU that it can accommodate? What's the wattage of the PSU that it will be coming with? Dual PCIE 6+2? Price?

Sorry for the bunch of questions! 

 

Cheers!

 

Rene

 

Currently cannot release any info because the specs may change a bit by release. Don't want to mislead anyone!

 

9 hours ago, Dschijn said:

 

That sounds interesting. Are talking about radiators for watercooled GPUs?

Yes, radiators for watercooling! :D Did I get that term correctly? That's what we've been calling them. Ahaha.

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1 hour ago, errin said:

It would be good if it comes with 4 USB  and Lan Port like Razer Core design.

That will cripple/gimp your GPU performance . The TB3 interface can only handle so much data through put.

Edited by bloodhawk

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4 hours ago, bloodhawk said:

That will cripple/gimp your GPU performance . The TB3 interface can only handle so much data through put.

 

Nope? The TB3 connection provides 40 Gbps but the PCIe slot only uses 32 Gbps to follow PCIe specifications. Makes 8 Gbps leftover which can be used for peripheral stuff. Ethernet takes 1 Gbps, makes 7 Gbps left for the USB ports. Unless one is going to use only external SSDs with these ports, it's not going to happen that the bandwidth is used in a way that the GPU performance is crippled.

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5 hours ago, Morv said:

 

Nope? The TB3 connection provides 40 Gbps but the PCIe slot only uses 32 Gbps to follow PCIe specifications. Makes 8 Gbps leftover which can be used for peripheral stuff. Ethernet takes 1 Gbps, makes 7 Gbps left for the USB ports. Unless one is going to use only external SSDs with these ports, it's not going to happen that the bandwidth is used in a way that the GPU performance is crippled.

I guess it also depends on whether you're sending back video signal to internal display or not. Btw will it work with Node?

 

@DanKnight can you tell us what are the main problems you encountered during testing? There must be some sort of explanation why razer core is the only tb3 egpu product despite the fact that many manufacturers like asus, msi and giga exhibited their own products but never released em.

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59 minutes ago, Ness said:

I guess it also depends on whether you're sending back video signal to internal display or not. Btw will it work with Node?

 

@DanKnight can you tell us what are the main problems you encountered during testing? There must be some sort of explanation why razer core is the only tb3 egpu product despite the fact that many manufacturers like asus, msi and giga exhibited their own products but never released em.

Intel, Apple and Licensing. 

 

6 hours ago, Morv said:

 

Nope? The TB3 connection provides 40 Gbps but the PCIe slot only uses 32 Gbps to follow PCIe specifications. Makes 8 Gbps leftover which can be used for peripheral stuff. Ethernet takes 1 Gbps, makes 7 Gbps left for the USB ports. Unless one is going to use only external SSDs with these ports, it's not going to happen that the bandwidth is used in a way that the GPU performance is crippled.

 

From what i have seen with the Razer Core. It does.

Edited by bloodhawk
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2 hours ago, bloodhawk said:

Intel, Apple and Licensing. 

 

 

From what i have seen with the Razer Core. It does.

 

Taking into account what @Ness wrote: Did you use it on the internal or external display? I did not think about the internal display case at all. If you experienced it with an external display then it's weird to me but ok, experience > theory.

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This looks like a great product!  However I spend about 40% of my life on the road and any product that fits a desktop card is bigger than I want to carry with me.

 

I have been looking for something like the Acer Graphics Dock.  The issue with that is that it does not even come with last years top end card as it has a Nvidia GTX 960M.

 

Since we have a company rep on this form I figured I would ask if there is any chance that they are working on a something similar to the Acer Graphics Dock with a GTX 1080 in it?

 

What I really want is a slim laptop with a world class keyboard (In my opinion Thinkpads still have the best) and then have one of these docs to plug in when I get back to my hotel for the night.

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3 hours ago, Morv said:

 

Taking into account what @Ness wrote: Did you use it on the internal or external display? I did not think about the internal display case at all. If you experienced it with an external display then it's weird to me but ok, experience > theory.

External.

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19 hours ago, errin said:

It would be good if it comes with 4 USB  and Lan Port like Razer Core design.

 

18 hours ago, bloodhawk said:

That will cripple/gimp your GPU performance . The TB3 interface can only handle so much data through put.

 

8 hours ago, Ness said:

I guess it also depends on whether you're sending back video signal to internal display or not. Btw will it work with Node?

 

@DanKnight can you tell us what are the main problems you encountered during testing? There must be some sort of explanation why razer core is the only tb3 egpu product despite the fact that many manufacturers like asus, msi and giga exhibited their own products but never released em.

 

DISCLAIMER: Just because we're discussing about USB ports and Ethernet ports doesn't mean there will be any on this coming product. Maybe future product. :whistle: 

We're aware that the Core has crippled performance when the USB and Ethernet ports are in use. This is something we're researching about with our own product.

 

@Ness We haven't encountered any problems that we weren't able to fix! I don't have an answer as to why Razer is the only one that has an eGPU in the market currently. We've delayed ours, and maybe other companies as well, just to ensure we're using the latest technology and so we could deliver a stable, high-performance, quality product.

 

1 hour ago, The Reaver said:

This looks like a great product!  However I spend about 40% of my life on the road and any product that fits a desktop card is bigger than I want to carry with me.

 

I have been looking for something like the Acer Graphics Dock.  The issue with that is that it does not even come with last years top end card as it has a Nvidia GTX 960M.

 

Since we have a company rep on this form I figured I would ask if there is any chance that they are working on a something similar to the Acer Graphics Dock with a GTX 1080 in it?

 

What I really want is a slim laptop with a world class keyboard (In my opinion Thinkpads still have the best) and then have one of these docs to plug in when I get back to my hotel for the night.

 

The Acer Graphics Dock is a cool product, but at the moment we do not have any plans to have an all-in-one solution.

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4 hours ago, DanKnight said:

 

 

 

DISCLAIMER: Just because we're discussing about USB ports and Ethernet ports doesn't mean there will be any on this coming product. Maybe future product. :whistle: 

We're aware that the Core has crippled performance when the USB and Ethernet ports are in use. This is something we're researching about with our own product.

 

Thank you for being on the top of things Dan! Will keep an eye out. 

In the mean time, lets see how well the HDK works ;) 

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On 9/29/2016 at 0:12 AM, DanKnight said:

DISCLAIMER: Just because we're discussing about USB ports and Ethernet ports doesn't mean there will be any on this coming product. Maybe future product. :whistle: 

We're aware that the Core has crippled performance when the USB and Ethernet ports are in use. This is something we're researching about with our own product.

 

If the Node does not at least has an USB 2.0 port I'd rather consider other options.

I can live without a RJ45 port, because the Notebook has Wifi anyway, but having to plug in another
cable is a real turn off for me. I even hoped the Razer Core could charge the XPS 15, but it can't.

All in all I really hoped for a 1 plug solution ( Charge, GPU, peripherals ). In the future maybe...

 

On that note, is charging over TB3 of any significance in your planning?

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10 hours ago, Splitframe said:

 

If the Node does not at least has an USB 2.0 port I'd rather consider other options.

I can live without a RJ45 port, because the Notebook has Wifi anyway, but having to plug in another
cable is a real turn off for me. I even hoped the Razer Core could charge the XPS 15, but it can't.

All in all I really hoped for a 1 plug solution ( Charge, GPU, peripherals ). In the future maybe...

 

On that note, is charging over TB3 of any significance in your planning?

 

USB and RJ45 ports are on the table. They may or may not be put on the Node, but may in a future product. (I'm pushing for minimum 1 RJ45 / 1 USB!) Just curious, how many USB ports do you use on average and at most?

Power delivery is a more complicated situation that depends on the laptop's requirements and spec. Depending on laptop, it may or may not work, and that is something we're still in the validating process for.

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I asked a similar question to InXtron CS (Akitio ODM?) about charging. The reply I got was that their implementation of thunderbolt port on the board could provide up to 15W (5V/3A) of power.  That's too small to charge a laptop.

 

Maybe Dan can confirm?

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10 hours ago, DanKnight said:

 

USB and RJ45 ports are on the table. They may or may not be put on the Node, but may in a future product. (I'm pushing for minimum 1 RJ45 / 1 USB!) Just curious, how many USB ports do you use on average and at most?

Power delivery is a more complicated situation that depends on the laptop's requirements and spec. Depending on laptop, it may or may not work, and that is something we're still in the validating process for.

What matters most is egpu experience with different laptop manufacturers/gpus/os. Please don't try to do everything at once. USBs, RJs and powering laptop are all great but not essential. And certainly will postpone release date.

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