Jump to content
Andromedus

Acer Nitro V17 Nitro Black HQ + AKiTiO Node TB3

Recommended Posts

I recently purchased the Acer Aspire V17 Nitro Black edition with a 4k resolution 17" screen. I fully intend to purchase the AKiTiO Node for use with its Thunderbolt 3 port. The laptop includes a Core i7 6700HQ CPU.

 

Can anyone provide some guidance, wisdom, or insight on what GPU should perform best under these conditions? Is Optimus desirable over XConnect? Does one brand or line of GPUs suffer more or less from the potential bandwidth bottleneck? Is memory size likely to be a significant help (4 GB vs 6 GB vs 8 GB)?

 

Thanks for any help!

Edited by nando4
merged as requested

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Additionally, if its any incentive, I will post my journey and results in this thread as they occur over time. In this way I will attempt to give a little back to this community, which is a great resource.

 

Edit: I should add that I'm looking for something in the sub-$400 range but preferable sub-$300. From what I've researched so far, 4k benefits greatly from more memory. As a result, I'm leaning towards the RX480 8GB 1388 MHz OC edition found here: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16814150773

 

It offers the added benefit of crossfire support, which could make for an inexpensive upgrade down the road when prices come down even further. With that said, crossfire obviously wouldn't fit in a single AKiDiO Node, which would make the setup less organized and less portable. Still, it's an option.

 

I will probably wait until Black Friday to make a purchase in case there are any substantial price breaks on whatever GPU I settle on.

 

Criticism and opinions are welcome.

Edited by Andromedus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I noticed my thread was merged here. I don't see much Thunderbolt 3 discussion in many threads or guides, so I wonder if anyone can help.

 

My Acer V17 Black just arrived and AKiTiO's site offers some instructions on how to check for TB3 eGPU compatibility: https://www.akitio.com/information-center/node-gpu-compatibility 

 

Upon following the instructions (after updating all firmware, BIOS, and software I could find) I get the result shown in the attacked pic. I'm unsure what to do next. Does anyone have any experience here?

 

Thunderbolt 3.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I hunted around for a more up-to-date Thunderbolt Software package than Acer offers and found this: http://www.station-drivers.com/index.php?option=com_kunena&view=topic&catid=4&id=2249&Itemid=255&lang=en#13633

 

Being the most recent version I've been able to find, I installed it. After doing so, my result is the attacked picture. At least now the window is showing a few versions numbers. Still, the entire space where the "Thunderbolt Controller" section should be remains blank. I've tried searching for it and NVM and PD Firmware versions (whatever those are) and all I ever find is Thunderbolt Software similar to what I found in the above link.

Thunderbolt 3 2.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I returned to the Acer page http://www.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/support-product/6404?b=1 and downloaded the "Thunderbolt 3 (NVM: 15) Update Tool.

 

Note that this is something I had already done when I first received my laptop, and absolutely nothing happened. This time the updater progressed through, and I eventually was given the instructions shown here:

IMG_20161116_200907655 (1).jpg

 

 

After the restart, the result is what is shown here: 

Thunderbolt 3 3.png

 

Granted the "No" on the last line is highly disappointing, but so far I think this is forward progress. What I don't know is whether or not this computer will support TB3 given the proper software/firmware or whether this is something that is flat impossible. If it's the latter then I will be very disappointed, as an Acer Technician indicated it would be possible here: http://community.acer.com/t5/V-and-VN-Series-Laptops/V15-Nitro-TB3-eGPU-possible/m-p/412512#M7867

Edited by Andromedus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That "No" doesn't mean much. 

I have tested this on my P870DM-G, with and without a custom TB3 firmware.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, bloodhawk said:

That "No" doesn't mean much. 

I have tested this on my P870DM-G, with and without a custom TB3 firmware.

 

Where do you obtain your custom TB3 firmware?

 

I'm having a hell of a time finding up to date firmware. I've installed and uninstalled so many things at this point my software/firmware now looks like this (notice many of the versions are different) and I've been unable to get it back to the way it was. I'm currently at a loss as to whether this is an improvement or a step backward (note PD firmware is "better" while most everything else is not)...

Thunderbolt 3 4.png

 

Edited by Andromedus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've managed to get my best results yet by using the Dell Chipset Driver here: http://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/04/product-support/product/precision-m7710-workstation/drivers/advanced

 

This resulted in:

 

Thunderbolt 3 5.png

 

This still leaves me at NVM Firmware version 15. I've read that there are versions as high as 30 out there, but I can't seem to locate them. Even if I did, getting them to install might not be possible, as I've found that the installer will check a BIN file vs an expected vendor and error message if they don't match.

 

With that, I'm really at a loss as to what to do next. I'm hoping for some community help if anyone else knows what I should do next.

 

Also, does anyone know what the "External GPUs supported" line actually means? Does it mean that "the PC this program is installed on was never tested in-house?" That's an entirely different statement than stating it is flat-out not supported at all. One is a liability CYA statement another is stating a physical impossibility. 

 

 

Edited by Andromedus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, Andromedus said:

Where do you obtain your custom TB3 firmware?

 

I'm having a hell of a time finding up to date firmware. I've installed and uninstalled so many things at this point my software/firmware now looks like this (notice many of the versions are different) and I've been unable to get it back to the way it was. I'm currently at a loss as to whether this is an improvement or a step backward (note PD firmware is "better" while most everything else is not)...

Thunderbolt 3 4.png

 

Unfortunately it's not public, and system specific. 

Also as I mentioned before, it doesn't matter. People have been used The Akitio Thunder 3 as an eGPU enclosure over TB3 , even though the status says No.

Even with my system I tested it out with both stores k firmware, which had the eGPU support as No, and with the custom which said Yes. Both cases it worked exactly the same .

That status won't matter till the time the notebook.manufactures goes the extra length to block eGPU support. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was able to get a response from an Acer Technician on the Acer forums here: http://community.acer.com/t5/V-and-VN-Series-Laptops/V15-Nitro-TB3-eGPU-possible/m-p/412512#M7867

 

He indicated some surprise that the software shows a "no" for eGPU compatibility, although he noted that I have not strictly adhered to Acer drivers during this process, which is true. However, the Acer drivers simply would not install properly. I can confirm this in hindsight because when I returned to the Acer drivers with an updated TB3 Software pack, I got a successful update complete with a computer restart, unplugging of cord, and pressing of the battery disconnect pin (as seen in the image above). None of these things occurred when I was updating off a stock, newly arrived laptop. This suggests a problem with the Acer TB3 drivers in addition to the apparent eGPU incompatibility.

 

The Acer Technician said that he raised the issue to the engineer level, which is a very good sign. I will most likely go ahead with the AKiTiO node purchase (when available) and report back my results. He said that updates would be posted at the above linked forum thread.

 

I'm still looking for input on the best GPU match, but the RX480 seems like a reasonable candidate, particularly considering AKiDiO has certified it with the Node already. This eliminates GPU/Node compatibility as a potential fault point.

 

So far I'm impressed with Acer's swift response on this matter. Needless to say, if the TB3 isn't fully implemented on enthusiast-level laptops that were promoted as if it were, this would be a marketing disaster. With the Node's upcoming release, the tech industry will be publishing countless reviews, benchmarks, pontifications, etc. on eGPUs in general and AKiDiO (and compliant laptops) specifically in the coming weeks/months. Any indication of poor or faulty implementation will be echoed far and wide, and will scare enthusiasts away. It's in the best interest of Acer, TB3, AKiDiO, and GPU manufacturers for this to be resolved now before the eGPU concept goes from enthusiast to mainstream, which I believe will be sooner than most people think. In fact, "TB3 eGPU compliant" is going to be one hell of a marketing hook, and quite honestly already would be today if it were exploited.

 

I'll continue to keep this thread updated as things transpire.

Edited by Andromedus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the 15" version of this system ordered (Aspire V15 Nitro Black Edition aka Aspire VN7-592G) along with a Akitio T3T Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter. Assuming that the T3T adapter works perfectly, I'll be able to test the 592G/792G's eGPU combatibility with my Akitio Thunder2 + GTX 980 setup

Edited by Slovedon
  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Slovedon said:

I have the 15" version of this system ordered (Aspire V15 Nitro Black Edition aka Aspire VN7-592G) along with a Akitio T3T Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter. Assuming that the T3T adapter works perfectly, I'll be able to test the 592G/792G's eGPU combatibility with my Akitio Thunder2 + GTX 980 setup

That's excellent. If you don't mind, please post your results here (or a link to them). I'm very curious to know how the TB3 drivers respond to having a device plugged in. Does it start an update? Does it continue to read "no" for eGPU compatibility? Etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Success! My Akitio Thunder2 + 980 setup is working fine (so far) with the 592G's Thunderbolt 3 connection and Akitio T3T adapter. Now I'm just waiting on Akitio to release the Node for full Thunderbolt 3 speeds 

 

592G.jpg

 

On 11/18/2016 at 0:28 PM, Andromedus said:

That's excellent. If you don't mind, please post your results here (or a link to them). I'm very curious to know how the TB3 drivers respond to having a device plugged in. Does it start an update? Does it continue to read "no" for eGPU compatibility? Etc.

Windows 10 will get confused with the 960M/980 combo and install the notebook and desktop Nvidia drivers repeatedly, so you have to disable device driver updates.

 

The 980 showed in device manager after installing all the Acer driver & firmware updates from their website (most importantly the TB3 firmware) which let me install the desktop Nvidia drivers. After reboot, device manager gave a "OS could not find enough resources" error for the 980 (not uncommon when setting up eGPUs) but disabling, reenabling, and another reboot fixed it. Now the 960M and 980 are working perfectly for 10+ reboots, with and without eGPU connected.

 

The eGPU compatibility section isn't showing for me, but like @bloodhawk said, that "no" is meaningless anyways

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all -

DO NOT RUN FURMARK ON ANY GPU!!!!

 

There is a reason manufacturers have throttles built in to counter it. 

 

Secondly - 

 

Congrats bud! Happy to hear everything is working ! 

 

Easiest way to eliminate any driver issues is to - Disconnect GPU, go into safe mode , use DDU to uninstall old drivers. When system is rebooting, connect the TB3 cable and once in Windows , install the new/drivers of your choice.

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, bloodhawk said:

 

First of all -

DO NOT RUN FURMARK ON ANY GPU!!!!

 

 

Thanks for the heads up. I never got that memo :/

 

1 hour ago, bloodhawk said:

Easiest way to eliminate any driver issues is to - Disconnect GPU, go into safe mode , use DDU to uninstall old drivers. When system is rebooting, connect the TB3 cable and once in Windows , install the new/drivers of your choice.

 

Good to know, I'll give it a try if I have any driver problems in the future. I did a clean install of the desktop drivers, so hopefully that removed the original drivers completely

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/23/2016 at 9:54 PM, Slovedon said:

Success! My Akitio Thunder2 + 980 setup is working fine (so far) with the 592G's Thunderbolt 3 connection and Akitio T3T adapter. Now I'm just waiting on Akitio to release the Node for full Thunderbolt 3 speeds 

 

592G.jpg

 

Windows 10 will get confused with the 960M/980 combo and install the notebook and desktop Nvidia drivers repeatedly, so you have to disable device driver updates.

 

The 980 showed in device manager after installing all the Acer driver & firmware updates from their website (most importantly the TB3 firmware) which let me install the desktop Nvidia drivers. After reboot, device manager gave a "OS could not find enough resources" error for the 980 (not uncommon when setting up eGPUs) but disabling, reenabling, and another reboot fixed it. Now the 960M and 980 are working perfectly for 10+ reboots, with and without eGPU connected.

 

The eGPU compatibility section isn't showing for me, but like @bloodhawk said, that "no" is meaningless anyways

I've been out for the holiday but just wanted to say thank you for returning to give us this information.

 

You are now officially the resident expert :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it seems Asus announced the XG Station2 https://www.asus.com/Graphics-Cards-Accessory/ROG-XG-STATION-2/?_ga=1.210323921.530795800.1466973933

 

it mentions that it supports the GL702VM, so looking at the forums i cam across this thread https://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread.php?89041-GL702VM-Thunderbolt-Not-working/page2

 

the TB firmware has a new release (which i presume is to support eGPU)

 

@Andromedus seeing you've been trying TB firmware from various vendors,  the "External GPU Supported" is marked as "YES" with this one (this firmware according to the screenshots in the asus thread)

 

any word on the akitio node yet?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HI ....... 

 

ime new to all this .. but ive got a Vn7-592G and ive got a Akitio Node ...... with a MSI gtx 1060 hooked it all up ..... and nothing doing .... im ruining the version 15 of thunderbolt and i get the attached .... i try and update the firmware thunderbolt  update tool and i get the attached picture..

 

please help....... ive tried updating the thunderbolt to 16 version but still the node deosnt connect ....

 

this is the first ever thunderbolt device ive connected to this laptop....

 

Thanks

 

and please help :(

Capture.JPG

Capture.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please if you are able to use the 1060 with accer notebook please follow up with what you have done. I´m deciding if the notebook is worth buy to pair with gtx 1070 later. If possible can you run some benchmarks?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi! I'm searching infos about vn7-592g compatibilty with egpus. are there problems with drivers/firmware? akitio node or razer core are able to start with this acer?

Edited by sicily428

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hi sicily428,

 

there is unfortunately, you need to get your thunderbolt NVm to 15 , which is possible with the acer update tool  but .... theres problems with that , ive got a node with a gtx1060 been trying to 3 months now , i finally got the thunderbolt controller to show up in device manager abd thunderbolt to detect it but only as port 1 , see attached my NVm is only 10 and i need at least 14 for a thunderbolt 3 device to be detected ,

 

ive contacted acer and they about as helpful as a chocolate fireguard and im waiting for a technical  call back , every time i run the update tool i get the second attachment ... it says checking then disappears and nothing  when, when i finally got the thunderbolt controller going in my device manager i updated it which updated the thunderbolt version to 16.1.47.1 but the nvm didn't  hence my node is not being detected 

 

so theres a few problems :-) , dunno if that helps at all , if you check your thunderbolt software and its nvm 15 , i dont see any reason why it shouldn't work :-), ive lost a bit of hope but not all together .......if anyone can help i would be great full, only thing i can think of is i cant run the batch file for the fimwear update in administrator  but acer said that should not matter 

 

hope that helps

Capture4.JPG

Capture 2.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hi

 

yep i seen all those links, but the update still says checking then disappears, would be greatfull if anyone could help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

acer , have booked a repair prolly means a complete reinstall of the system :( .... PLEASE HELP !!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2/3/2017 at 0:38 PM, haz100 said:

hi

 

yep i seen all those links, but the update still says checking then disappears, would be greatfull if anyone could help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

acer , have booked a repair prolly means a complete reinstall of the system :( .... PLEASE HELP !!!

could you post a question on the blog Egpu io :)

 

Edited by sicily428

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WOW.......!!!!!!

 

i dont know if this is the best place to post this but after 3 months of trouble with my thunderbolt , i have finally got my node with a GTX 1060 going with my VN7 592g :w00t:

 

finally .........

 

im testing but it all seems good WOW

 

can someone tell me where i should post this ... in all its details 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.