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HammerFET

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HammerFET last won the day on December 21 2015

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About HammerFET

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  1. Did you have to modify your Akitio Thunder2 to make your dual-fan GTX 970 fit?

    1. HammerFET

      HammerFET

      nope, I used the zotac card which is short. Only thing I did to the Akitio is remove the front fan

    2. jfraser

      jfraser

      I didn’t realize it until after I posted the question that you simply added a couple of fans. I originally thought that you were using a dual-fan graphics card.

       

      Why did you remove the front fan? Wouldn’t it be easier to just unplug it?

    3. jfraser

      jfraser

       

      I’m running OS X 10.11.2 on my late 2011 13” MacBook Pro, in which I’ve recently installed a Solid State Drive. After disabling SIP, I tried running your automate-eGPU.sh script, but I ran into a problem. It reports that it can’t find the board ID and that the kext files aren’t modified. I rebooted and checked System Information to see if the GPU was showing up correctly, but it wasn’t. What’s going on here? Is there a way for me to correct this? Is there a switch or argument I need to use in conjunction with the “./automate-eGPU.sh” command? I’d really appreciate some help!

  2. What an amazing response! Thanks all! I've added some more info to the main post on the internal wiring connections so be sure to check it out! The switch lets you use the standby function built into the Dell power supply. There is a pin that you must connect to ground to allow the PSU to give +12V at the connector. If you don't need a power switch, then you must have this pin always connected to ground. The reason I went with the switch is that getting this working with your mac sometimes requires you to turn everything off, and then back on again. Especially when running in windows with UFI mods for Optimus. I'd often have several blue screens on boot where turning everything off and on again would fix it. Having a switch here is much easier than having to unplug/replug the cable from the back. The LED was a bonus feature of the switch I bought so I thought I'd might as well use it, Its connected to the same pins the built in Akitio LED (obviously I removed the old one). Its controlled by the akitio motherboard and tells you when its started up. You don't need a resistor for the LED as there's one on the Akitio board.
  3. I've been sitting on this build for a while, meaning to make a build log but its been so long I've forgotten most of it! So here's the short and sweet version! My previous build with this card was a water-cooled wall mounted windows gaming machine. This was a great rig for a former student just having started a new job with still a fair bit of time on his hands... Then things got busy, and the water beast became stagnant. Long story short, I converted to mac mostly due to requiring portability yet still wanting a powerful machine that wasn't a total door stop to carry around. So it became that a GTX 970 soon found its way on my book shelf in a nice compact case. Just for kicks, heres my old rig! Firstly, why did i drop the water-cooling? The original plan was to make a similar wall mounted eGPU. After some pondering I came to the conclusion that this particular card I owned wasn't much of an overclocker. I hadn't actually bothered unlocking the card or overclocking it a whole lot. I had planned to do it, but it had never happened. For 5 months I had used the card running on stock power and it was still maxing out games on my 2560x1080 ultra wide. I went ahead a bought the Akitio thunder 2 off a german website, delivered to the UK within two days for a very good price! I initially used a 120W 12V power brick to run the card, clearly this didn't cut it, and the card would die instantly on load. I resorted to grabbing a Dell DA2 18A power brick and things started working great! This post by dschjin inspired me to try the noctua fans with the stock heatsink. To my surprise they worked very well and I was getting great temps under load. I could even hold my previous water-cooled overclock and it would hang around 75 degrees C. I then proceeded to create a funky case cooling design, and two days of drilling later I ended up with this! It looked great! But it was an awful cooling solution... absolutely useless, wouldn't even hold stock settings before throttling... I then decided to cut out the entire side and top panel with the idea of finding a grill/mesh material to put in its place. I ended up going with a desktop wire magazine holder like this one: Here it is cut out I then cut it to size and slid it between the fans and the edge of the aluminium case. Its all very much a tight fit and required a lot of effort to close while keeping everything in place. I used some PCIe power extenders that plugged on the top of the card as two six pin power. They required trimming of the plastic and heat shrink to get the clearance: As you can see the sharp inside of the aluminium enclosure already mangled the nice new heat shrink! The fans are also just about held in place with some bits of plastic. Due to the design of the heatsink, the fans couldn't be sat flush without having to cut some metal tabs and bending things. the way it is now lets the fans sit tight between the mesh and the heatsink. Once the case is closed, nothing can move. I then added a power switch with LED (switch contacts go on the dell PSU and led goes to the existing led pins on the Akitio motherboard. chopped up 24pin ate connector is in there as a total bodge job. The wires are breaded in pairs and simply pass through the vent holes of the card. Too easy! The wires are stiff enough that it doesn't really matter anyway. Finally, here are a few of my favourite things! Electrical tape to cover up sharp edges of steel. 3M VHB tape can stick anything to anything like foam tape! Then come off like it was never there. I swear by this stuff! sharpie to coverup dings and dents Wago wire to wire clamps, these things are quicker and much more reliable than terminal blocks if you're too lazy to solder wires together. Like me! stick on foam to space out bits of floating mesh grill and make a snug fit mains powered dremel with EZ click metal cutting disk. This thing makes short work of thick aluminium. And don't forget boys and girls, always wear protection! Software woes Lets just say the hardware was the easy bit.. I started out with a bootcamp of Windows 10 and the card would just about start. It seemed very unreliable, sometimes it would work everytime, then I'd get home one day and the thing just didn't want to start.. Optimus made everything worse, though it was great when it worked. I ended up going to several installs of windows 10 and 8.1, even a UEFI rebuild.. Finally I gave in a resorted to OSX drivers. Automate GPU is fantastic and it just works. I've been very surprised how well most of my steam library works on OSX. I had a nice surprise the other day when I found out Thief was available for OSX and that sold it to me. I got rid of my windows partition and all my gaming is done in OSX now. Overall this seems to be a great solution for portable computing and still having the ability to run desktop graphics. I've been very surprised and look forward to Thunderbolt 3 where this should be natively supported! For those interested, I did manage to get a fair bit of overclocking done within windows when I had it working, here are the results: CPU temps: Card info: Over thunderbolt: running this card on a Z77 desktop motherboard with i5 3570k @ 4.2GHz gave : In OSX again:
  4. I've been sitting on this build for a while, meaning to make a build log but its been so long I've forgotten most of it! So here's the short and sweet version! My previous build with this card was a water-cooled wall mounted windows gaming machine. This was a great rig for a former student just having started a new job with still a fair bit of time on his hands... Then things got busy, and the water beast became stagnant. Long story short, I converted to mac mostly due to requiring portability yet still wanting a powerful machine that wasn't a total door stop to carry around. So it became that a GTX 970 soon found its way on my book shelf in a nice compact case. Just for kicks, heres my old rig! Firstly, why did i drop the water-cooling? The original plan was to make a similar wall mounted eGPU. After some pondering I came to the conclusion that this particular card I owned wasn't much of an overclocker. I hadn't actually bothered unlocking the card or overclocking it a whole lot. I had planned to do it, but it had never happened. For 5 months I had used the card running on stock power and it was still maxing out games on my 2560x1080 ultra wide. I went ahead a bought the Akitio thunder 2 off a german website, delivered to the UK within two days for a very good price! I initially used a 120W 12V power brick to run the card, clearly this didn't cut it, and the card would die instantly on load. I resorted to grabbing a Dell DA2 18A power brick and things started working great! This post by dschjin inspired me to try the noctua fans with the stock heatsink. To my surprise they worked very well and I was getting great temps under load. I could even hold my previous water-cooled overclock and it would hang around 75 degrees C. I then proceeded to create a funky case cooling design, and two days of drilling later I ended up with this! It looked great! But it was an awful cooling solution... absolutely useless, wouldn't even hold stock settings before throttling... I then decided to cut out the entire side and top panel with the idea of finding a grill/mesh material to put in its place. I ended up going with a desktop wire magazine holder like this one: Here it is cut out I then cut it to size and slid it between the fans and the edge of the aluminium case. Its all very much a tight fit and required a lot of effort to close while keeping everything in place. I used some PCIe power extenders that plugged on the top of the card as two six pin power. They required trimming of the plastic and heat shrink to get the clearance: As you can see the sharp inside of the aluminium enclosure already mangled the nice new heat shrink! The fans are also just about held in place with some bits of plastic. Due to the design of the heatsink, the fans couldn't be sat flush without having to cut some metal tabs and bending things. the way it is now lets the fans sit tight between the mesh and the heatsink. Once the case is closed, nothing can move. The model of the fans are: Noctua NF-A9x14 PWM 92mm Fan I then added a power switch with LED (switch contacts go on the dell PSU and led goes to the existing led pins on the Akitio motherboard. chopped up 24pin ate connector is in there as a total bodge job. The wires are breaded in pairs and simply pass through the vent holes of the card. Too easy! The wires are stiff enough that it doesn't really matter anyway. Here is the overall schematic of what's going on inside. The akitio boards are powered using the preexisting 4 wire connection that goes between the thunderbolt adaptor board and the PCIe/power board. The four wires are actually two pairs of wires that are connected together on each end. Two wires for +12V and two for GND. This means that if you cut one of each wire, you can then feed power into them to power both boards. Nice! The switch is a locking type with built in LED. The LED goes to the Akitio board as shown and the switch goes between ground and the first pin on the DA2 plug. This lets you completely cut power to the unit of you need it. Useful for problems when booting and you need to cycle the power every so often. The fan connection has been left empty as I used the fan header on the GPU itself. Don't forget the PCIe 6pin power connections. YOU MUST have the sense wires connected otherwise the GPU wont start, I forgot to do this and it took me several days to figure out what was going on... Finally, here are a few of my favourite things! Electrical tape to cover up sharp edges of steel. 3M VHB tape can stick anything to anything like foam tape! Then come off like it was never there. I swear by this stuff! sharpie to coverup dings and dents Wago wire to wire clamps, these things are quicker and much more reliable than terminal blocks if you're too lazy to solder wires together. Like me! stick on foam to space out bits of floating mesh grill and make a snug fit mains powered dremel with EZ click metal cutting disk. This thing makes short work of thick aluminium. And don't forget boys and girls, always wear protection! Software woes Lets just say the hardware was the easy bit.. I started out with a bootcamp of Windows 10 and the card would just about start. It seemed very unreliable, sometimes it would work everytime, then I'd get home one day and the thing just didn't want to start.. Optimus made everything worse, though it was great when it worked. I ended up going to several installs of windows 10 and 8.1, even a UEFI rebuild.. Finally I gave in a resorted to OSX drivers. Automate GPU is fantastic and it just works. I've been very surprised how well most of my steam library works on OSX. I had a nice surprise the other day when I found out Thief was available for OSX and that sold it to me. I got rid of my windows partition and all my gaming is done in OSX now. Overall this seems to be a great solution for portable computing and still having the ability to run desktop graphics. I've been very surprised and look forward to Thunderbolt 3 where this should be natively supported! For those interested, I did manage to get a fair bit of overclocking done within windows when I had it working, here are the results: CPU temps: Card info: Over thunderbolt: running this card on a Z77 desktop motherboard with i5 3570k @ 4.2GHz gave : In OSX again: This article was promoted on 12-20-15.
  5. Question about your fan setup. I'm doing the same thing with two noctua fans and they seem to run extremely fast. In idle before boot up the fans are very slow and quiet. Once the system starts the fans ramp to about 45% and the sound of the air is quite noticeable. During this idle time in Windows or Mac, the gpu stays very cool and I'm sure the fans are going much faster than they need to be so I'd like to slow them down. Under load the speed increases slightly and the card gets to about 80degrees and holds there with fans at 53%. How loud is your fan setup and are you using any resistors? The sound of the airflow with mine are definatly louder if not as loud as the stock fans at this speed. I'll try some speed reduces and see if they make a difference, I know I have quite a bit of headroom in the pwm range anyway.
  6. I'll give that a go, in general I've not noticed any difference in the order of which I start the eGPU or plug in the TB cable. Even if I power/plug during the boot menu, it'll still work in Windows and OS.. until now I have the 15" 2015 MacBook pro retina
  7. 1) Power on eGPU 2) Plug in TB cable 3) Power on MBP 4) Hold Alt and select windows (NVidia logo) GPU-Z shows me the NVidia card is fully loaded and intel iris is at 60% while I'm benchmarking. Internal display has no windows open, just the desktop A straight forward answer I like! External LG Ultrawide connected via HDMI to eGPU. For some reason, both in windows and OS X, I can only seem to set this monitor to run in 1920x1080 rather than the native 1920x2560 On my previous desktop build this ran at native res with the same card and same port. If I connect the HDMI to the MBP directly, then I can also run it at native res. Not set to main display, but I try to start the games from that monitor yes.
  8. @Dschijn @Morv I got Optimus working last night, though a bit of a strange procedure required having done the EFI mod. If I boot into windows 8.1 with the eGPU connected, I get a BSOD reboot loop during the windows loading screen. However, if I start windows without the eGPU connected, then hot plug it, after a few seconds everything is happy and I can run heaven benchmark across both internal and external screen at high FPS. It seems though whenever my eGPU is loaded, the intel iris GPU gets loaded too (to around 60%), resulting in heat on the MBP. This happens even if I'm just using the external eGPU connected screen for graphics acceleration. I've yet to try optimus without an external monitor, and in OSX I don't see any optimus behaviour. Is this possible to achieve in OSX? For some strange reason, OSX eGPU accelerated graphics seems very sketchy, heaven runs at good FPS but stutters quite often and none of my steam games will start.
  9. I noticed the same thing but assumed it was Windows doing it's indexing or something like that. Will look again when I get back. I I tried to disable/uninstall the iris gpu but it re-enables and reinstalls itself everytime I reboot. Doing this though makes the internal screen slow and unresponsive and seems to disable things like screen brightness control
  10. Yeah my Zotac card has little nibs on it too that keep the fans about 1cm above the fins. This makes them sit a little high for the case to close. I'll have to grind the nibs down a bit so it closes. It should be a nice snug fit after that though. I've also made a plastic shroud that holds the fans in place and directs the air through the fins rather than around them. The plan is to drill holes all over the side top and bottom of the enclosure so it can get air. I was going to go with fan grills like yours but decided this would be easier. I don't plan to use this a huge amount, I only play 3 - 4 high graphics games per year so it's mostly going to sit at home. Saying that, this macbook is my first laptop in about 5 years so maybe that will change
  11. I was quickly throwing it together last night and ran out of space to fit these last two sense wires into my terminal blocks, I ended forgetting about them after that and half assumed it was just an extra ground connection that would be shorted on the GPU anyway >.< Still need to clean the build up so there's wires everywhere. I ended up dropping the watercooling idea I had. Looking at one of your builds with the noctua fans, I've decided to do the exact same thing and go with space saving enclosed solution rather than insane performance. How's that running by the way? This does mean I have a full water loop sitting doing nothing now :/
  12. ARGHHH I FIXED IT!!!! First I started with a fresh windows 8.1 install to see if it made any difference. Nothing changed and the result was the same "device has been stopped due to a problem". If I disabled the device and re-enabled it again, the problem would go away and GPU-Z would show the card. I noticed however that everything looked good except the core and memory clock were showing 0MHz, indicating the card was powered but not running. Then thanks to a post on tomshardware PCI Express Auxiliary Graphics Power Connectors - Power Supply 101: A Reference Of Specifications I noticed that I forgot to solder the two 6pin PCIe sense wires to ground! I'd connected the +12V and ground lines, but not the sense! Gods sake! After this the card shows up in device manager as expected and GPU-Z shows all the status as good. I'm running windows 8.1 now... wish I'd figured this out before I nuked my win10 partition The card also shows up correctly in OS X too. Anyway, I'll try to hook the card up to my monitor when I get home and see if I can get some benchmarks. I guess nvidia optimus is the next step to use the internal display? I can't believe it was a PSU wiring issue.. I've built so many PCs and re-cabled so many PSUs. It still gets me EVERY SINGLE TIME
  13. I've just got the new Akitio box hooked up and its working fine this time, shows up as a thunderbolt device in system report and my GPU seems to be detected. I can run the automate-eGPU.sh script and everything looks like its being setup fine. My setup is: Macbook pro retina - mid 2015 - 15inch OS X 10.11.1 El Capitan Zotac GTX 970 Nvidia web driver: 346.03.03f02 Problems is that when I look in the system report again, I see this under graphics/displays. Using an external display connected to the HDMI of the 970, I get no output at all. NVIDIA Chip Model: Chipset Model: NVIDIA Chip Model Type: GPU Bus: PCIe PCIe Lane Width: x4 VRAM (Total): 256 MB Vendor: NVIDIA (0x10de) Device ID: 0x13c2 Revision ID: 0x00a1 ROM Revision: preset 1.0.0 From what I can find, people are having huge issues with 2015 MBPs, does anyone know the reason as to why its different to all the MPBs? As far as I can tell, I have the latest nvidia driver and everything is setup fine. I've even tried installing the nvidia driver on a Windows 10 bootcamp. The driver installs fine and boots with eGPU connected. In device manager however I see the 970 connected but "not running due to a problem" (yellow exclamation mark).
  14. This should be it: Akitio Thunderbolt 2 External PCIe Expansion | eBay I've sent a refund request for this one and ordered a new one from Germany (gear4u.de) Hopefully that one arrives quickly and I can get back to testing again.
  15. Hmm, I suspected this might be the case. The box looks a little used and I'm missing the setup guide. I found it on ebay, supposedly new. I'll take a picture of the card when I get home tonight.