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mnrc last won the day on October 28 2014

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  1. This announcement by Dell is very interesting, mentioning a Surface type tablet with perhaps a low voltage Core i7 processor and with a Thunderbolt 3 connector from which we could hook up external GPUs. "Dell's latest will reportedly feature a 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) resolution with an InfinityEdge design that cuts down on bezel size. There'll be a stylus for it, and other specs include a Thunderbolt 3 port, 10-hour battery life, and cameras on both back and front (8-megapixel on the rear, with a 5-megapixel selfie cam)." We don't know yet about the processors, but it wouldn't be surprising to see similar options to Microsoft's Surface 3/4 Pro. If so, hooking this up to a dock and eGPU could make for a very portable and powerful tablet PC. Have a look here for more info: Dell is also building its own Microsoft Surface clone | The Verge
  2. For those following Sonnet's offerings, they recently refreshed their range of TB2 products as well as their prices. The new Sonnet Echo Express SEL has a new MSRP of $329 (previous $399) and a new black color scheme. They've also introduced a new model that sits in between the SEL and the SE II: the Echo Express SE I for MSRP $349. This has also lead to a great decrease in the price of the older SEL to $269 at BH. The new and old SEL seem to have identical specs other than color, so this is a great deal. I'm personally interested in the SE I because it can accept full height, double-width cards. Unfortunately, the mechanical PCIe connector is still stuck at 8x, requiring a riser or some filing away of the plastic end. AC adapter is rated at 80W, which is too low for any card other than the GTX 750Ti (or its successor) without an external PSU. Still, I think that this enclosure is ideal for a compact solution, ignoring the Akitio Thunder2.
  3. ASUS has announced their refreshed ROG laptop lineup, with the most interesting item being their new G501. It's a thin and light gaming laptop that takes many design cues from the Macbook Pro and the Razer line of laptops. Most importantly, it's another new notebook (see previously announced G501: Coolest Thin & Light 15-inch Gaming Laptop, With 4K, PCIE SSD
  4. I wonder about this as well. I'm guessing optimus still doesn't support more than 2 GPUs. It should be easy enough to disable the PCIe addresses of the dGPU within the UEFI shell I suppose. The lenovo is fine, but defeats the concept of a thin and light powerful ultrabook that can double as a gaming machine while connected at home. Will keep an eye out for the updated TB2 model. I see HiDPI laptops as ideal for productivity and a beautiful desktop experience, but of course gaming as such resolutions is too taxing. In the case of my MBP, gaming is done at half the native resolution, which provides performance without much visual loss. I find that these displays still display lower resolutions very clearly without much noticeable aliasing.
  5. Well I've used the GTX 750Ti, which is rated at about 60W, in the Sonnet SEL, whose slot is rated at 75W, and it worked without issues. Nando also confirms that the PCIe power spec states that it should power up to 75W. In the case of the Akitio, the 25W limitation seems artificially limited. Now that you mention it, the OWC does look a lot like the Akitio. The pics in the OWC manual (http://eshop.macsales.com/tech_center/manuals/OWCMANHELIOS1.2.pdf) do look awfully like the Akitio. If it is just a rebranded product, then yeah we would have every reason to buy the cheaper Akitio.
  6. http://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/HELIOS1TB2/ Anybody have any experience using this enclosure? Price: Sits in between the Akitio Thunder2 and the Sonnet SEL, without the small size of the SEL and (perhaps) without the power slot restrictions of the Akitio. Specs: - Power adapter is 120W - Supports single double width, full height, half length card. - PCIe slot is 16x mechanical, 4x electrical (like all other TB2 enclosures) - "25W (slot) +75W (supplemental power cable)" - What does this mean? Does the slot really deliver 75W as per PCIe spec? Usage: I'm still looking for a self contained solution that can power a <75W eGPU like the GTX 750Ti (and perhaps its successor, GTX 950Ti?). So far, the Akitio needs an external PSU due to 25W PCIe slot power restriction, and the SEL is too small and needs a riser, besides being more expensive. The Sonnet EE SEII works best right now, but is even more expensive. Any thoughts/use/discussion? Full specs: Product Specifications: PCIe cards supported One half-length (up to 7.75"), full-height, double-width x16 PCIe 2.0 card Expansion slot One PCIe 2.0 x16 (4x mode) Device Interface PCIe (PCI Express) Port Configuration (2) Thunderbolt 2 ports, backwards compatible with Thunderbolt Compliances CE FCC Max Data Transfer Rate Thunderbolt – 20Gbps Bootability Bootable on Mac as long as the specific PCIe card installed is bootable System Requirements Mac running OS X 10.9 or later PC running Windows 7 or later Available Thunderbolt port Note; Boot Camp® is not supported. The Thunderbolt certification process does not include Macs running Windows through Boot Camp. External Case Dimensions 5.7 in (W) x 9.2 in (D) x 2.9 in (H) 114.78 mm x 233.68 mm x 73.66 mm Enclosure Weight (without card) 3.85 lbs. (1.75kg) Product Manual Helios Manual (2.2MB PDF) PCIe Card Minimum Guaranteed Power 25W (slot) +75W (supplemental power cable) Power Supply UL Listed Universal auto-switching power supply AC input 100/240V 50/60Hz DC output 12V/10A Adapter cables for International use sold separately.
  7. For those looking to a sweet light alternative to using Macbooks for Thunderbolt powered eGPUs, check out this new beast! - 4K 15.6" IGZO display - Core i7-4712HQ (Haswell) - Quadro graphics (dGPU) and Intel graphics (iGPU) - Thunderbolt 2 port! It's not cheap, but neither are Macbook Pros. AnandTech | Dell Updates Ultrabook Thin M3800 Mobile Workstation With 4K Display
  8. Great implementation, but yeah, we've known about Netstor for some time and their prices still aren't worth it. Still waiting for a <$300 compact solution...
  9. Because these websites all have in common the fact that they pretend to be tech websites
  10. Hi all, This guy has started popping up around tech sites, and I thought it's interesting that another mainstream manufacturer has released an eGPU solution! This box is a compact solution that includes the PSU and enough space for any graphics card. Build quality seems average, but good enough compared to the frankenbuilds we've been making. Now I know that it uses a proprietary connector like the Vaio Z, but it appears to be some kind of PCIe connection. I'm curious as to whether this is Thunderbolt with a different connector, like they did with the Z. If so, could it be modified to fit a standard Thunderbolt cable? Another possibility is that it's on the market because Dell did not go have to seek Intel's approval because this is not Thunderbolt at all. Who knows, one may hope. Here's some pics and a link to one of many articles out there for those interested. http://www.anandtech.com/show/8653/alienware-graphics-amplifier (added AnandTech link) Hands on: Alienware graphics amplifier | Digital Trends
  11. Yeah, seems pretty unlikely to be able to run a 750ti without auxiliary connectors in a Thunder2 without an external PSU. Pretty much rules out the most compact solution. I hope they release an updated model without slot power restrictions! Until then, I guess the Sonnet SEL does a decent job, other than on price haha.
  12. Hmmm... Seems like he is talking about powering the card through the Thunder2 without using a riser? Seems like nobody tried to power a card using a powered riser that was fed by the Akitio's power supply using a barrel to molex connector. But even if this works, I wonder if that 60w power supply would provide enough power to everything...
  13. I can confirm the SEL made a somewhat annoying scratching/buzzing sound when the GPU was being used, such as any time 3D graphics were displayed. Performance seemed not affected, though games would occasionally skip a beat and this would coincide with the sound skipping as well. I have now sold the SEL and am considering buying a new one. However, I would prefer an Akitio if, and only if, it can work with a 750Ti with no auxiliary power connectors. In other words, can you confirm that using the Akitio with a powered riser, then using a barrel to molex connector to power the PCIe slot alone would make the card work? Would there be no need to power the Akitio board itself? Can the Akitio PSU alone power the entire card like this? Thanks for confirming, or if there are other possible solutions!
  14. When I play games without eGPU on my MBP 15" Iris only, temps eventually go up and fans spin loudly. With my eGPU, the MBP fans do not spin up during the entire gaming session. I guess that the eGPU is offloading enough power from the computer that it doesn't heat up that much. Depends on the game though I guess. The only thing I hear is the GPU fan, which in itself is extremely quiet (ASUS 750Ti).
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