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  1. My eGPU requirements are solely for daVinci Resolve on OS X to boost render times and size of files that can be rendered without the dreaded GPU Is Full message. No gaming, no monitor. Can’t get any simpler. The eGPU is to run on either a MacBook Pro Retina, 15in Mid 2015, AMD Radeon R9 M370X, and a iMac 27in Late 2013, Nvidia GeForce GTX 780M. Parts EVGA GTX 980 Ti Hybrid - Wanted a quite card and the Hybrid is spec’ed a little higher than a standard GTX Ti. Highpoint RocketStor 6361A - have had some success with Highpoint in the past and liked the neat power hook up via molex connection. Price was the same for me as the AiKiTo. And the finished results with the parts supplied looks very neat. Silverstone SFX-L 80+ Gold 500W Modular Power Supply - got it because I new it would fit and the modular cables keep the case neat. Silverstone Milo ML08-H - looks like its about the smallest case to fit a 10.5” card, ridiculously oversized cooling system, PCIe card and power supply. Comes with handle for and extra $10. The handle is not very comfortable. Not carrying to work on the bus any time soon. Build (in pictures)........ First up are some images of the Highpoint card with visual measurements. I had to make some educated guesses about dimensions and only just got it right. Hope these help. Test build and connected to the MBP. Downloaded the latest CUDA drivers for the laptop and ran goalque’s installation script https://www.techinferno.com/index.php?/forums/topic/7989-script-automating-the-installation-of-egpu-on-os-x-inc-display-output/. Rebooted the laptop and there was the 980 ti in the OS X systems report. Ran Resolve and it recognised the card and rendered at approx 3 times the speed of the non eGPU render. Sweet! Initial test fit. Tried to work out the best place to feed hoses through the space that is usually occupied by the motherboard. Little guy is Danbot. He pops up occasionally to give you a size reference. Stripped down Highpoint with modular molex connected. PCIe riser from Silverstone case and BONUS thunderbolt end plate from Highpoint. Riser attached to card. Note pen marks for cut out. And the flip side with riser poking through. Test fit of Highpoint. Pop rivet near the Made in China prevented me from test fitting it fully. Also, I removed the USB, audio and switch loom from the bottom centre of case. They were never going to be needed! Case cutting. Weapon of choice. You can see I wrapped the whole thing in plastic to try and contain the spread of metal filings. Waste of time - they go everywhere! Blew it all out with an air compressor. Okay now that pop rivet is gone - final test fit prior to case cut part 2. Note the markings for the Thunderbolt cut out. Do not do this! You will see why at the end. Case cut, and bracket for the cooling fitted. It was just 2 bits of aluminium bent at 90 degrees and pop riveted to the case. Sounds simple enough but took a while to get the 105mm x 105mm hole pattern all lined up for the fan. Aluminium is quite flexible. Splashed a bit of matte black paint on to stop the rust. My version of the paperclip trick. Soldered and heat shinked a couple of female pins I had lying around. Power supply in Highpoint card in. Nice fit. Everything lines up. With Highpoint card in place there is a roughly 12mm gap between the card and case. If I was not going to be moving the case around I would have let it float but as it might take some knocks I wanted to screw it to the case. So found some card risers (think that’s what they are called) and screwed them into two holes I drilled into the case. Now I know the gap - some precision engineering. And fitted to the Highpoint first, then screw to the case. Card in. Note the 4 pins for power. They just stuck out a little too much for me to leave alone. So I cut the hole in the case to make some room and (maybe) help with airflow to keep the card cool as it has no direct fans. Top view. Everything lines up. Card in. You can’t see it easily but I decided to secure the riser to the GPU with a bit of wire and a cable tie because every time I removed the card the riser was left in the Highpoint, which then had to be removed to take out the Highpoint . And they all came in and out a lot. The first casualty. Stupid fabric hose. Hooked it on the case in one of the early fits and they NEVER slide back down again - only up. The fraying is from my many attempts to push it back down. The radiator fan. Flipped. Took me a while to work this out. You want cool air sucking in to the case through the filtered side panel, and no matter how I tried, there was just not enough length on the hoses to fit the radiator with the fan on the filter side. Also with the radiator in the middle of the case the hose bends were too tight. Solution, take the fan off and put it on the other side of the radiator so it sucks air through instead of blowing it, as is the EVGA default set up. Protection for the hoses as they are hard against the metal edge. Its filed smooth but just to be safe. Used some 15mm irrigation hose slit down the middle and cable ties. Everything in. Cable tied the hoses to the case to clear the fan. I’ll never need to open this case again. Yeh, right! Finished. Well kind of. Just took this picture. What you don’t see are any pictures of the complete strip strip down when I discovered that my really neat cut out for the Thunderbolt connections prevented them seating properly (by the thickness of the case). Obvious in hindsight. Also, as I had it apart, I decided to put the LED’s back in and power them off the PSU in series with a 560 Ohm resistor. 1/. they look cool and 2/. they let me know that I have left it on. Again in hindsight, I should have powered 1 off the Highpoint fan so I would know when the card itself was on. Left the case open where the motherboard sits to let as much air out as possible. And the revised Thunderbolt opening Benchmarks. I don’t think that they are that different to what others are reporting. I have 3 computers that I have access to. iMac Late 2013 27" GTX 780M (4 G RAM) MacBook Pro Mid 2015 R9 M370X (2 G RAM) iMac Late 2012 27" GTX 680MX (2 G RAM) Octane Benchmark Trench (Standard System) faster is better. MBP N/A (no CUDA), iMac 2012 3'48", iMac 2014 4'25" Octane Benchmark Trench (eGPU Headless) The results are the same with a monitor attached. MBP 1'13", iMac 2012 56", iMac 2013 57" Heaven (Standard System/eGPU Headless) Score/FPS MBP 311/12.3, iMac 2012 555/22, iMac 2013 540/21.4 Heaven (eGPU) Score/FPS MBP 1770/70.3, iMac 2012 1413/56, iMac 2013 1638/65 FurMark 2560x1140 (Standard System/eGPU Headless) Score/FPS MBP 1536/25, iMac 2012 1798/29, iMac 2013 1579/16 FurMark 2560x1140 (eGPU) Score/FPS MBP 6841/114, iMac 2012 3647/60, iMac 2013 6521/108 Resolve 12.3 (Standard System) FPS* MBP 2.57, iMac 2012 5.04, iMac 2013 5.63 Resolve 12.3 (eGPU Headless) FPS MBP 8.01, iMac 2012 6.12, iMac 2013 6.06 *Rendering 4992x2496 cineform to 4992x2496 ProRes 4:2:2HQ (7Nodes, 3 Keys with Blur and 3 windows with Blurs). The iMacs are Thunderbolt 1 and the MBP is Thunderbolt 2 so that probably goes some way to explaining the difference in the results. Its taken a bit of research and some advice from Blackmagic to come to the conclusion that the lower CUDA results on the iMacs on Resolve, are a result of lower bandwidth and not a conflict with the internal NVIDIA GPU’s. Note that the Octane benchmark is faster on the iMac. Is it leveraging both the internal GPU and the eGPU? Thanks to all that have posted before me and special thanks goalque. That script makes this whole process very simple.
  2. First off I want to say thank you to the community here. I wouldn't have been able to do any of this without the hard work and dedication of everyone who blazed the trail before me and shared their experience. I wanted to post my success story in case others were trying to do something similar. Hardware 15" MacBook Pro Retina, Mid 2012 2.6 GHz Intel Core i7 (Turbo boot to 3.6 Ghz) 16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 Sonnet Echo Express SE II Asus NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 4 GB LG Ultrawide 34" 34UC97 curved 4K display [3440 x 1440 @ 60 Hz] Apple Cinema Display 20" (2006 or 2008, I forget) [1920 x 1200] OS X (worked on both 10.10 Yosemite and 10.11 El Capitan I've been successfully using my eGPU under OS X for over a year. Thanks to Goalque's Automate eGPU script. Really is super easy. Major props. Some thoughts, in no particular order Original setup was using the MBPr in clamshell mode in a Hinge Dock --> Did not work well, issues booting, internal screen stayed on Updates can randomly break everything --> easy fix with the automate eGPU script Very stable --> quite pleased with the success Windows 10 Just got this working last weekend. I originally used bootcamp, which on my device sets up windows to use MBR. Could not get it to work even with the help of Setup 1.30 / 1.2. Out of boredom I nuked the windows partition and re-configured everything to boot EFI. I eventually got everything working using the DSDT override. Some additional thoughts, in no order The integrated Intel GPU causes all sorts of trouble. Windows updates drives a lot without telling you. Causes blue screens. Needed to keep disabling the device in safe mode This slowed down and frustrated the process, often times I didn't realize the integrated GPU was causing issues I believe the DSDT override was done correctly, and after that everything began working correctly (the large memory device is in device manager, but there is nothing below it) My game of choice is Heroes of the Storm. Conveniently I can test it in both windows and OS X. It runs much better in OS X Seems to be CPU limited. In OS X Turbo boost is constantly overclocking to 3.4 GHz. CPU temp in the mid 90s. Fans at Max. (GPU does not seem pushed, fans slow). 50-70 FPS @ max res, mix of Ultra on more GPU intensive settings and Low on CPU settings In Win 10, Turbo boost was all over the place 2.8-3.2 GHz. Game was much choppier. 25-60 FPS. CPU temps were ~102. Same settings. I have screenshots of everything. Unigine Valley benchmarks in both OS X and Win. I'll add tomorrow. Realize this may not be a great guide for others trying to replicate, but wanted to share my success story as a guide post for others with similar hardware. And to say thanks again to the community. I've been an avid reader of the guides and other builds as I worked through mine. Feel free to ask any questions. I'll help where I can.
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