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2012 13" MBPr + GTX570@8Gbps-TB1 (TH05) + Win7 [kloper]

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NOTE: The US$180 BPlus TH05 (inc Thunderbolt cable) native Thunderbolt adapter used in this implementation was recalled in Jan 2013 due to (presumably) threats by Intel/Apple per TH05 recall notice. As a result refer to either of these solution that can be implemented today: http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/4570-%5Bguide%5D-2012-13-rmbp-gtx660-sonnet-echo-express-se-%40-10gbps.html#post63754 or 2013 11" Macbook Air + Win7 + Sonnet Echo ExpressCard + PE4L + Internal LCD [uS$250].

post-7879-14494994151396_thumb.jpg

First off, before anything, I really want to thank Tech Inferno Fan for all his help. There is no way I could have gotten anywhere nearly as far without his prompt replies and help debugging stuff. Thanks!

Ok, so, I have managed to just get this configuration working! As it was quite an effort, I felt like a tutorial was in order to help others in the future. Note that although this is mostly designed for 13" Retina Macbook Pros, different parts of this tutorial can be used for different computers. Also, realize that the Retina has different config in pci.bat from the non-Retina (see the Note at the bottom).

This tutorial is for Windows 7 BIOS (not windows 8, and not EFI). Although I was able to get Windows 8 EFI working with little to no effort, Internal LCD mode wasn't working likely because of immature drivers. Windows 8 BIOS also had a host of problems (see Notes section below for more details).

Although this tutorial might be useful for you, I'd really like your help! If you were somehow able to get Win 8 BIOS (or EFI) working with Internal LCD on this laptop model, please PM me so I can try it and update these instructions. See note at end about what happened when I tried Win 8 BIOS. It sucks because I'd like this tutorial to be designed for the bleeding-edge, but oh well, compatibility...

Anyways, here we go!

Benchmarks are coming, and I'll update this thread once they're done. Spoiler: It's fast :D

System specs

  • 2.9 GHz Intel Core i7-3520M (basically the most maxed out retina 13" mbp)
  • 8GB 1600 MHz DDR3
  • Intel HD Graphics 4000 768 MB
  • Windows 7 Professional 64-bit (BIOS)
  • 256GB Apple SSD

Requirements

  • TH05 Thunderbolt -> PCI-Express adapter. Note that this device is currently discontinued because Intel wants cases for all thunderbolt products. See the Facebook discussion and http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2680-th05-recall-notice.html for more details. The company is working for a summer 2013 release of the TH04 which should operate identically. Finally, although these instruction are specific to the TH05, they could also be relevant to other adapters.<br><br>
  • NVidia GTX 570 videocard. Note you can probably use any video card including ATI cards and these instructions should be identical. See note at end about Internal LCD rendering on ATI cards.<br><br>
  • 300W power supply capable of running the video card. Look at your video card's spec sheet to see the peak wattage only it uses (not the suggested value that often includes motherboard + hard drives, etc).<br><br>
  • 2013 13" Retina Macbook Pro. Instructions will differ for different macbooks. for example the non-retina macbook requires different config (see Note at end), and a 15" Retina/Non-Retina also requires different config (described here)<br><br>
  • DIY eGPU Setup 1.X, developed by nando, available for purchase here. This allows you to do the PCI bus remapping to allow windows to see both your internal Intel HD 4000 and the GTX 570<br><br>
  • A USB memory key that's at least 4GB for bootcamp and initial Setup 1.X configuration<br><br>
  • Other software: Windows 7 ISO (from MSDN / MSDNAA / etc). See Note at end of article about Windows 8

PART A: Generic prep of Windows 7 64-bit

  1. On your mac use Boot Camp Assistant to prep a USB key with Windows 7 64-bit<br><br>
  2. Still with Boot Camp Assistant, partition your main drive and start the Windows 7 installation process. I recommend around at least a 60GB partition. Games are big these days. If you just don't have the space, you can do what I do and turn off Hibernation Mode and the Virtual Memory Page File to save hard drive space (about 17GB together)<br><br>
  3. Once partitioning is done, your computer will auto reboot and the Windows 7 installer will start. Install Windows 7.<br><br>
  4. Once the install is done, go back to your mac partition (hold the Option button while booting). Go back to Boot Camp Assistant and download the Boot Camp Windows Support software. You can put it in a folder on the USB memory key.<br><br>
  5. Reboot to Windows 7, go to the File Explorer, onto your USB memory key, and run the Boot Camp installer. This will install a bunch of drivers to make Windows more usable (including your Wifi drivers).<br><br>
  6. Go to Intel's site and download the latest Intel HD 4000 drivers for Windows 7 64-bit.<br><br>
  7. Launch Windows Update and apply all required/optional patches. Reboot as required. Repeat this step until nothing’s left.<br><br>
  8. There's some clock weirdness when switching between Windows and OSX, so add the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\TimeZoneInformation\RealTimeIsUniversal with DWORD value 1

PART B: Putting together the eGPU and understanding the problem

  1. On the TH05, set SW1 to position 3 (6.9s, though note it's more like 30s). Set SW2 to 2-3 for 2X.<br><br>
  2. Plug in the power (the white connector) on the TH05 to your power supply. There is no need to plug in the Black and Red cable (this is for automatic powersupply control, which doesnt work on the MBP). Keep the pins disconnected on the TH05. Plug in the TH05 to your video card.<br><br>
  3. Plug in the motherboard connector to the included SWEX adapter. Make sure it is in the ON position (1-2). Also plug in any required 6-pin/8-pin connectors to your GPU. Mine required 2 6-pin plugs.<br><br>
  4. Make sure your laptop is shut down.<br><br>
  5. Plug in the thunderbolt cable to the TH05 and then the laptop. Also, make sure no monitors are plugged into the video card.<br><br>
  6. Turn on the power to the power supply, the GPUs fans should start, then start your laptop. Hold the Option key. Now wait for the red light to turn off on the TH05. Once it’s off, select Windows.<br><br>
  7. Go to NVIDIA’s site, download and install the latest drivers for your video card. When prompted to reboot, shut down the computer instead.<br><br>
  8. Turn off the eGPU’s power supply.<br><br>
  9. Start the eGPU's power supply and boot your laptop, waiting for that red light to go off again before selecting your Windows partition. You will always need to do a power cycle of the eGPU when rebooting your computer because of the way the TH05 works.<br><br>
  10. Once Windows has started, open the Device Manager. Select Scan For New Hardware.<br><br>
  11. Notice the GTX 570 is listed with the yellow exclamation mark. If you double click on it you’ll see the dreaded Error 12. This Error 12 means that Windows wasn’t able to allocate a contiguous block of memory for the video card. Yes you probably have 8GB in your laptop, but the PCI Bus doesn’t work that way. We’re going to get rid of that error by reallocating devices in the PCI Bus.

PART C: Getting rid of Error 12 on this Windows 7 (BIOS) install

  1. Go purchase DIY eGPU Setup 1.x here and run the self-extracting exe on Windows to install to c:\eGPU.<br><br>
  2. Shut down your computer and unplug the thunderbolt cable. Keep it unplugged until mentioned later. Restart the computer to OSX.<br><br>
  3. You’re now going to write the Setup 1.X raw disk image (ending in .img) to your USB memory key. Open a Terminal and type the following:

    diskutil unmount /dev/diskXs1
    sudo dd if=/Volumes/BOOTCAMP/eGPU/eGPU-Setup-YYYYY.img of=/dev/diskX
    diskutil list           (look for the /dev/diskX where X is the USB memory key)


    Make sure you replace the X and Ys with your disk number and Setup 1.X version.<br><br>

  4. Reboot to Windows 7.<br><br>
  5. If the version of Setup 1.X you received was 1.10b5, go to this thread: http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2123-diy-egpu-setup-1-x.html download the Patch named: Setup-110b5-updates.exe. Run it to extract. Instead of extracting to the suggested V:\ extract to the USB drive, which for me was E:\ (i'll be referring to this drive as E drive from now on). Select Yes when prompted to overwrite files.<br><br>
  6. Open up the command prompt in Administrator mode. Type the following to prep the boot image with your computer’s configuration:

    cd \devcon
    mkdevcon
    e:

    <br><br>

  7. In notepad create the file E:\config\pci.bat and paste the following into it:

    echo Performing PCI allocation for 2012 13" MBPr based off Tech Inferno Fan's MBP BIOS mode findings . . .

    :: The X16 root port
    @echo -s 0:1.1 1c.w=6030 20.l=AE90A090 24.l=CDF1AEA1 > setpci.arg

    :: Underlying Bridges in order from high to low
    @echo -s 4:0.0 1c.w=5131 20.l=AB00A090 24.l=C9F1B801 >> setpci.arg
    @echo -s 5:3.0 1c.w=4131 20.l=A700A200 24.l=C5F1B801 >> setpci.arg
    @echo -s 7:0.0 04.w=7 1c.w=3131 20.l=A300A200 24.l=C1F1B801 28.l=0 30.w=0 3c.b=10 >> setpci.arg
    @echo -s 8:0.0 04.w=7 1c.w=3131 20.l=A300A200 24.l=C1F1B801 28.l=0 30.w=0 3c.b=10 >> setpci.arg

    :: The NVidia GTX570
    @echo -s 9:0.0 04.w=400 0C.b=20 24.w=3F81 10.l=A2000000 14.l=B8000000 1C.l=C0000000 3C.b=10 50.b=1 88.w=140 >> setpci.arg

    setpci @setpci.arg
    set pci_written=yes
    @echo off

    <br><br>

  8. Again in notepad, open the file E:\config\startup.bat and replace the contents with the following. Note the vidwait and vidinit lines. They need to have the correct PCI ID for your video card. 10de:1086 is my GTX 570. If you have a different card (including an ATI card) it will be different.

    call speedup lbacache

    :: wait for GTX570 eGPU to be on the PCI BUS
    call vidwait 60 10de:1086

    :: initialize NVidia eGPU
    call vidinit -d 10de:1086

    :: Perform the pci-e fixups
    call pci

    :: Chainload to the MBR
    call grub4dos mbr
    :: Speed up end-to-end runtime of startup.bat using caching

    <br><br>

  9. Turn off your MacBook, turn the eGPU on from the power supply and plug the thunderbolt cable into the MacBook. The fan on the GPU should be spinning right now. Make sure no display is plugged into the card.<br><br>
  10. Turn your MacBook on while holding Option. There's no need to wait for the red light to turn off now before proceeding. This time select to boot from the USB drive.<br><br>
  11. Once you get to the Blue first menu, press enter for Option 1. This will prep the PCI Bus. Note it might take a few seconds for the eGPU to be detected (basically until the red light goes off)<br><br>
  12. Windows 7 should start. If you open up the Device Manager you should see the GTX 570 without the yellow exclamation mark! Horray! You fixed Error 12!<br><br>
  13. Double click on the NVidia icon in the system tray. On the left side click on “Adjust image settings with preview”.<br><br>
  14. I know it’s shocking, but if you see a spinning NVidia logo, your internal LCD screen is being rendered by your external GPU! If you don’t believe me, launch your favorite game and notice how there’s no way the Intel HD 4000 could render it so well. I recommend you now install your fav benchmarking software, GPU-Z, FRAPS, Steam, etc to take advantage of your laptop’s new abilities.<br><br>
  15. You win!

Bonus: Running Setup 1.X from your hard drive (not USB)

The initial USB install is necessary as the disk image writes don't quite work right on a Macbook. So once the USB stick works we copy it to the disk image for a faster bootup time with more convenience. Here's how to do it:

  1. Open an Administrator command prompt and run the Setup 1.X installer:

    setup-disk-image.bat answer Y when asked about mounting the image
    del “c:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\eGPU-Setup-mount.bat.lnk”
    xcopy /e e:\*.* v:\*.* assuming e:\ is your USB drive. overwrite all.
    cd c:\eGPU

    <br><br>

  2. Shut down the macbook and remove the USB memory key. Power cycle the eGPU (as usual) and start the macbook again. Select Windows from the hard drive this time.<br><br>
  3. Once the Windows boot manager shows up, select “DIY eGPU Setup 1.1xxxx”<br><br>
  4. Press Enter on the first option which will do exactly what your USB memory key used to do. Convenient!<br><br>
  5. Once the Windows boot manager shows up again, select Windows<br><br>
  6. Windows should properly boot and everything should be back to normal!

NOTE: if you ever get a black screen when booting, it means you probably forgot to power cycle the eGPU.

NOTE: you won't be able to access the menu system from this hard drive boot mode. To change config do it using the USB drive and rerun these instructions.

Notes

  • For ATI cards to render on the Internal LCD, you’ll need to use Virtu. See http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2109-diy-egpu-experiences-%5Bversion-2-0%5D-35.html#post33187 for instructions on how to get this to work.<br><br>
  • If you have a non-Retina 13" Macbook Pro your pci.bat will be different, see http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2367-macbook-pro-retina-15-gtx-560-ti-%40-th05-3.html#post32194 for what yours will look like.<br><br>
  • Although the eGPU steps are identical and work on Windows 8 BIOS too, there are problems in Win 8. With NVidia cards, having a monitor hooked up to the eGPU will make the Internal LCD flash and with no monitor, the LCD just renders the Intel HD 4000 output (making the eGPU useless). With ATI cards, although it does work to render games on an external monitor, Internal LCD rendering does not work (when using Virtu, supposedly need Virtu MVP which doesn't install on notebooks!). Because of compromises on both these and the relative immaturity of Windows 8’s drivers, I decided to make this tutorial for Windows 7.<br><br>
  • If you ever change the video card you use, you'll need to update the startup.bat with the correct PCI ID.<br><br>
  • When doing Internal LCD mode (which you’re doing when you have no monitor plugged into the video card), PhysX might not be on. Open the NVidia control panel and switch it from CPU to Auto. When doing benchmarks, keep it on CPU though.<br><br>
  • Dont forget that every time you reboot, you must power cycle the eGPU.<br><br>
  • If someone knows how to get the eGPU to restart with a reboot of the computer, please let me know. Simply connecting the black and red cable isn't enough on the MBP from my observations. I tried the switch in both positions and both polarities.<br><br>

Oh and here's my "case": :D

post-7879-14494994151164_thumb.jpg

Enjoy, and I hope these instructions were helpful for you! If you're on Twitter, i'd appreciate a follow: @lg

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post-7879-14494994150657_thumb.jpg

post-7879-1449499415089_thumb.jpg

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Kloper great work mate!!

much appreciate. I'll have to set mine up after work.

I'll do some benchmarks and some videos. Once I get it running.

Internal screen is the main feature for me for egpu set up on the go.

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NOTE: The US$180 BPlus TH05 (inc Thunderbolt cable) native Thunderbolt adapter used in this implementation was recalled in Jan 2013 due to (presumably) threats by Intel/Apple per TH05 recall notice. As a result refer to either of these solution that can be implemented today: [url]http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/4570-%5Bguide%5D-2012-13-rmbp-gtx660-sonnet-echo-express-se-%40-10gbps.html#post63754[/url] or 2013 11" Macbook Air + Win7 + Sonnet Echo ExpressCard + PE4L + Internal LCD [US$250].

TH05 eGPU Setup 13" Retina Macbook Pro Late 2012 [ATTACH=CONFIG]5759[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5760[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5761[/ATTACH]

eGPU+System Specs:
  • [FONT=Verdana]2.9 GHz Intel Core i7-3520M[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]8GB 1600 MHz DDR3[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]Intel HD Graphics 4000 768 MB[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]Windows 7 Professional 64-bit[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]512GB Apple SSD[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]Palet Jetstream nVidia GTX 670 2GB[/FONT]
  • [FONT=Verdana]PSU - Silverstone ST45SF 450w[/FONT]
Benchmarks: All benchmarks have been run 2x

3dMark11 Basic:

Score:

6477

Graphics Score:

7544

Physics Score:

4556

Combined Score:

4539

Click for results



3dMark Vantage Basic:

Score:

18699

Graphics Score:

23572

CPU Score:

11541

Click for results

3dMark06 Basic: "Note seems like a low score for 3dmark06" Score:

15405

SM2.0 Score:

6858

HDR/SM3.0 Score:

6544

CPU Score:

4232

[URL="http://www.3dmark.com/3dm06/17082875"]

Click for results

[/URL]

Heaven Benchmark v3.0 Basic :
FPS: 109.5
Scores: 2759
Min FPS: 30.0
Max FPS: 198.1
Hardware

Binary: Windows 32bit Visual C++ 1600 Release Mar 7 2012
Operating system: Windows 7 (build 7601, Service Pack 1) 64bit
CPU model: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-3520M CPU @ 2.90GHz
CPU flags: 2893MHz MMX SSE SSE2 SSE3 SSSE3 SSE41 SSE42 HTT
GPU model: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 9.18.13.1090 2048Mb


Settings

Render: direct3d11
Mode: 1280x800 fullscreen
Shaders: high
Textures: high
Filter: trilinear
Anisotropy: 4x
Occlusion: enabled
Refraction: enabled
Volumetric: enabled
Tessellation: disabled


Dirt 3 Video Benchmark
default settings on high for the most part, Resolution 2560x1600.

[video=youtube;0yMZLXJuOyQ]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0yMZLXJuOyQ&feature=youtube_gdata[/video] Borderlands 2 Gameplay Max settings for the most part, Resolution 1920x1200.

[video=youtube;anzmnq96-GI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anzmnq96-GI[/video]

Crysis 2 Gameplay Ultra settings + High res texture pack, Resolution 1920x1200

[video=youtube;bJ265vKifKg]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJ265vKifKg[/video]

Batman Arkham City Gameplay High settings, Resolution 1920x1200

[video=youtube;wcTHl6CiAQI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wcTHl6CiAQI[/video] Diablo 3 Gameplay Max settings, Resolution 1920x1200

[video=youtube;EC3lietNVlY]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EC3lietNVlY[/video] Call of Duty Black ops 2 Gameplay Max settings, Resolution 2560x1600

[video=youtube;pPFRrB1acaY]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPFRrB1acaY[/video] Starcraft 2 Gameplay Ultra settings, Resolution 1920x1200

[video=youtube;KX0JOKawu90]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KX0JOKawu90[/video]

....work in progress.

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Hi Kolper, congratulations on your setup.

Recently another forum member has suggested a simpler setup for e-gpu with his MBA. Since the MBPR-13 and MBA have very similar setup and configurations (iGPU only, 8gb ram Max...) I am wondering if the same setup will work for you.

http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2731-egpu-2011-macbook-air-13-inch-no-error12-no-scripts-required.html

If this works, then it would be amazing gain for the MBPR-13 and MBA's gaming capability.

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Recently another forum member has suggested a simpler setup for e-gpu with his MBA. Since the MBPR-13 and MBA have very similar setup and configurations (iGPU only, 8gb ram Max...) I am wondering if the same setup will work for you.

http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/2731-egpu-2011-macbook-air-13-inch-no-error12-no-scripts-required.html

i just tried what he did and i didn't have any luck. the gtx570 refused to come out of error 12 even with basically everything disabled.

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i just tried what he did and i didn't have any luck. the gtx570 refused to come out of error 12 even with basically everything disabled.

I wonder if it is a too much ram issues. borealiss stated that he only have 4gb of ram in his MBA. Hmm....

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I too have tried, with the same setup as Kloper 8GB ram.

No idea if that could be causing it.

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Just took delivery of a maxed out 13" Retina (Yep 768 SSD Baby) to mod it with an eGPU. This method looks awesome, but it seems I'm too late to pick up a TH05. Does anyone else know where I might be able to purchase this? Somebody has to have some dead stock.

if your reading this and your sitting on one, PM me with a price.

I have been brainstorming another idea. MikjoA (Check YouTube) modded his Vaio Z2 with a PE4L 2.1 and had good success. I have found a good mini wifi dongle that I could leave in one of the USB slots making the missing wifi card a non issue. I understand that I would have to purchase a second bottom plate and mod it, but the way the Wifi card sits inside the rMBP, it would be a breeze to complete.

I would instal the card and fabricate a thin protective cover when not needing access to the port. To make this even better, Spec and others make hard shells that would really protect it when our in the field.

I want to use the internal monitor and am not looking to line Sonnets pockets with $800 for their enclosure.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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Just took delivery of a maxed out 13" Retina (Yep 768 SSD Baby) to mod it with an eGPU. This method looks awesome, but it seems I'm too late to pick up a TH05. Does anyone else know where I might be able to purchase this? Somebody has to have some dead stock.

if your reading this and your sitting on one, PM me with a price.

I have been brainstorming another idea. MikjoA (Check YouTube) modded his Vaio Z2 with a PE4L 2.1 and had good success. I have found a good mini wifi dongle that I could leave in one of the USB slots making the missing wifi card a non issue. I understand that I would have to purchase a second bottom plate and mod it, but the way the Wifi card sits inside the rMBP, it would be a breeze to complete.

I would instal the card and fabricate a thin protective cover when not needing access to the port. To make this even better, Spec and others make hard shells that would really protect it when our in the field.

I want to use the internal monitor and am not looking to line Sonnets pockets with $800 for their enclosure.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

768GB huge !!!

Sadly I don't think there would be any place selling TH05.

They will be releasing a TH04 which I think is similar to the PE4L with a TB port not ETA though.

Since I've been able to get mine working through external and internal now, I won't be sending mine back since they have sent out a recall notice.

All I can say is, gaming on this eGPU setup is quite amazing, I will post my benchmarks later tonight and some pics and hopefully later some gameplay videos.

So far I've tested Crysis 2 and Borderlands 2. I have noticed an issue with the menu in Crysis 2 the cursor does not seem to match the actual screen, I'll need to follow up on that but playing full HD Crysis 2 is more than playable at max default settings. Borderlands 2 is no different max setting on max retina resolution is more than playable too although slow downs are noticeable when it happens although that was from a quick test. I'll do further testing tonight for updates.

A quick 3d mark 11 benchmark gave me around 4.4k on the internal display.

When I had mine set up with refit windows 8 external display I was getting low 6k.

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Just took delivery of a maxed out 13" Retina (Yep 768 SSD Baby) to mod it with an eGPU. This method looks awesome, but it seems I'm too late to pick up a TH05. Does anyone else know where I might be able to purchase this? Somebody has to have some dead stock.

if your reading this and your sitting on one, PM me with a price.

I have been brainstorming another idea. MikjoA (Check YouTube) modded his Vaio Z2 with a PE4L 2.1 and had good success. I have found a good mini wifi dongle that I could leave in one of the USB slots making the missing wifi card a non issue. I understand that I would have to purchase a second bottom plate and mod it, but the way the Wifi card sits inside the rMBP, it would be a breeze to complete.

I would instal the card and fabricate a thin protective cover when not needing access to the port. To make this even better, Spec and others make hard shells that would really protect it when our in the field.

I want to use the internal monitor and am not looking to line Sonnets pockets with $800 for their enclosure.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Stock of TH05 has disappeared. M-factors had it advertised and pulled it just as quick as BPlus. I figure only company that could pull BPlus' leash so hard would be Intel or Apple. Quite a coincidence them allowing a drip feed of TH05 units to get out till we figured out how to make them work on a Macbooks then they pulled them.

Cheapest TB-to-pci-e adapters are below:

* Sonnet Echo Express SE $320 https://www.google.com/shopping/product/14266218488794450654?q=Thunderbolt%20chassis&hl=en&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.&bvm=bv.1357700187,d.dGY&biw=1304&bih=589&sa=X&ei=pwvwUPjrGY7RmAX9wIDoCA&ved=0CGwQ8wIwBTgU&prds=scoring:p .

* OWC Helios is $339 https://www.google.com/shopping/product/343371908683020134?q=OWC%20helios&hl=en&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.&bvm=bv.1357700187,d.dGY&biw=1304&bih=589&sa=X&ei=-gvwUKHtMYjFmAXviYCoDQ&ved=0CDQQ8wIwAA&prds=scoring:p. At least they are advertising it as 10Gbps.

So these give you x2 2.0 + 12.5% plus very easy attachment via the Thunderbolt port. I'm wondering if they have the PERST# delay the TH05 had necessary to get them working in BIOS mode? I'd be guessing they don't.

To answer your question, a $71 PE4L-PM060A (or recommended $74 PE4L-PM100A) could be made to work in a MBPr. Only dilemma is some vendors like HP and Lenovo whitelist that port but Setup 1.1x has anti-whitelisting methods. Doubt Apple do whitelisting. The eGPU would be connected using the wifi mPCIe port in place of the wifi card. Be sure to check how accessible the mPCIe slot is before going ahead with the purchase.

If it's possible, have you thought of starting with a 13" Sony SVZ rather than a 13" MBPr? It has a i7-quad, lighter chassis, PMD, RAID-0 storage. Mikjoa shows how easy it is to mod a PE4L-PM060A for use in it.

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Thanks for all of the input.

I have an SVZ as well but was looking to sell it off in the near future. While its a great machine, I am not confident in its durability and Sonys subpar warranty service. I have also had the raid error happen more than once during ownership. That's really a scary situation.

I don't mind spending $350 on those adapters if I would get the same speed as I would with the P4LE. It would be much cleaner for sure.

Would the speed be the same?

I could exchange the rMBP for the 15", but the footprint is annoying. These eGPUs would wipe the floor with the 650m, correct?

Thanks again!

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Thanks for all of the input.

I have an SVZ as well but was looking to sell it off in the near future. While its a great machine, I am not confident in its durability and Sonys subpar warranty service. I have also had the raid error happen more than once during ownership. That's really a scary situation.

I don't mind spending $350 on those adapters if I would get the same speed as I would with the P4LE. It would be much cleaner for sure.

Would the speed be the same?

I could exchange the rMBP for the 15", but the footprint is annoying. These eGPUs would wipe the floor with the 650m, correct?

Thanks again!

The Sonnet Express SE and OWC Helios have a 10Gbps Thunderbolt link. That's more than twice faster the mPCIe/expresscard slot and 12.5% faster than the now no longer available TH05. Either of those would imho be more sensible than hacking the MBPr to use a PE4L + wifi slot and give better performance too. Even though I do like the idea of such a hack.

A 15" MBP/MBPr has the quad-core CPU and GT650m. Problem with them is no one has so far got it's iGPU active in Windows. That's important because the eGPU needs the iGPU for internal LCD use via either Optimus (NVidia) or Lucid Logix (AMD). Additionally, you get pretty lousy battery life in Windows since it uses the GT650M dGPU instead of iGPU.

To answer your question, a HD7870+ or GTX660+ will easily outbench the GT650M.

So far the most versatile Thunderbolt eGPU implementations have been on a 13" MBP/MBPr or 14" Lenovo T430s/S430. Both have the iGPU active. Only negative is both max out at dual-core i7 CPUs.

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Sounds good. Lastly, what is the fastest card I could use before bottlenecking comes into play. Also, will this Sonnet combo will allow internal screen use like yours?

Many thanks!

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Sounds good. Lastly, what is the fastest card I could use before bottlenecking comes into play. Also, will this Sonnet combo will allow internal screen use like yours?

Many thanks!

I found AMD cards bottleneck less than NVidia cards here. However, NVidia gives Optimus drivers so allow internal LCD to work. AMD's Enduro is a while away yet to do the same, but LucidLogix Virtu does do that and will supposed be purchasable next month for $30. Lastly, some games are optimized better for one over the other.

My experience is that DX9 and DX10 games do better with AMD cards. It's touch and go with DX11. I believe NVidia has the faster tesselation engine. Here's the final twist, x1.2Opt (expresscard/mPCIe) can see DX9 apps faster than a x2 2.0 TB link on a NVidia card due to the driver implementing pci-e compression upon detecting a x1 link. A x1 link can be set on a TB link by cellophane taping the second lane as shown.

If you believe Lucidlogix will deliver, then a $380 AMD HD7970 will give you stellar performance. That's about GTX670 pricing. You can also have a go at hacking LucidLogix to work on your system as explained to get internal LCD working.

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Do you happen to know if the Sonnet Pro will hold and power a 7970 or the GTX670/80.

If it works, I might just bite the bullet and pick one up for clean plug and play.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

Just found this on an ASUS GTX670

"Power Consumption up to 225W2 additional 6 pin PCIe power required"

The Sonnet Pro only has a 150w Peak. :/

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Kloper,

Could you please run Heaven Benchmark v3.0 Basic again at native/max internal Retina resolution?

Curious how that would turn up score wise.

Thanks!

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Quote

Kloper,

Could you please run Heaven Benchmark v3.0 Basic again at native/max internal Retina resolution?

Curious how that would turn up score wise.

Thanks!



I did a run results but this is with a gtx 670

Heaven Benchmark v3.0 Basic

FPS: 36.1
Scores: 908
Min FPS: 17.8
Max FPS: 49.6
Hardware

Binary: Windows 32bit Visual C++ 1600 Release Mar 7 2012
Operating system: Windows 7 (build 7601, Service Pack 1) 64bit
CPU model: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-3520M CPU @ 2.90GHz
CPU flags: 2893MHz MMX SSE SSE2 SSE3 SSSE3 SSE41 SSE42 HTT
GPU model: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 9.18.13.1090 2048Mb
Settings

Render: direct3d11
Mode: 2560x1600 fullscreen
Shaders: high
Textures: high
Filter: trilinear
Anisotropy: 4x
Occlusion: enabled
Refraction: enabled
Volumetric: enabled
Tessellation: normal
Unigine Corp. © 2005-2012

I will post more vids later. Just got your comment on youtube about black ops 2. I've got bf3 ready to test.

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So these give you x2 2.0 + 12.5% plus very easy attachment via the Thunderbolt port. I'm wondering if they have the PERST# delay the TH05 had necessary to get them working in BIOS mode? I'd be guessing they don't.

What is the drawback of not having "BIOS" mode?

I can get a good price on a Sonnet Pro. So all I would need then is the card and a Power Supply?

Just found this...

http://www.ebay.com/itm/281046968127;jsessionid=C6212A24F05FC1FDFD7519B882406249?ru=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fsch%2Fi.html%3F_sacat%3D0%26_from%3DR40%26_nkw%3D281046968127%26_rdc%3D1

Price aside, it has a 250W PS. Would this work as an all in one solution for a GTX670?

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A quick Borderlands 2 gameplay vid is up on my post on page 1.

I will add Batman Arkham city, BF3, Starcraft 2, Diablo 3 and Black ops II when I get the chance.

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Fantastic! What FPS are you getting on Borderlands? Do you have Physix on?

Everything is on max settings at 1920x1200, physx is on high as well.

I should have put fraps on when recording but the fps was capped at 60, during gameplay and battles it would drop quite a bit to 20fps in really heavy battle on average I'd say fps within 35-45.

I'll have to do more runs as that video was running very smooth while I was playing a lot smoother than a quick run with fraps on, could be just me realising the fps with fraps on though. Still the gameplay is more than playable although I prefer to lower the settings.

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The reason I asked is that I have read that Borderlands and Physx do not play nice with eGPUs.

Interesting,

thanks for the heads up, I'll turn physx to low and compare the results.

I have just uploaded a quick gameplay vid on batman arkham city, will run a benchmark post a vid as well getting roughly 40s on average on arkham city.

Currently uploading crysis 2 on ultra+high res texture pack, fps is in the 30s low 40s.

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