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2012 15" MBP GT650M [email protected] (AKiTiO Thunder2) + Win8.1 (BIOS) [errin]

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Hi guys, I write this guide to remind myself how to setup the system and sorry for my bad english. it’s not my mother language. (Feel free to correct me if I wrong)

This guide is based on karthikrajanv’s post as following:

http://forum.techinferno.com/implementation-guides/8006-%5Bguide%5D-2012-15-macbook-pro-gtx750ti%4010gbps-tb1-akitio-thunder2-win8-1-bios.html#post109488

Some parts may be copied from his posts so the credit goes to him.

 

At first after I read many threads I was confused which method should I use and found out that Apple computer those were released after MacBook Air mid 2013 will have UEFI for the Bootcamp and all Apple computer’s released before will use BIOS. This would determine the method you have to use. For Windows 8.1 will use UEFI by default if it capable. For Windows 7 will use BIOS by default. The BIOS method do need DIY eGPU Setup 1.x from @Tech Inferno Fan so please donate if you want to use it. The UEFI method doesn’t need it so you can setup it easier than BIOS (If I understand correctly)

 

Things you will need:

Hardware

- MacBook pro 15” 2012 (non retina) 650m with TB1

- Akitio TB2 Box

- Inno3d GTX 960 (This manufacturer is not so famous in US but it’s the cheapest in my country which still cost around $216 included tax)

- Silverstone SFXL 500w

- PCI x16 riser with Molex you can find it from eBay

- Dell U2414H with Displayport

- Apple Thunderbolt Cable 2m (Akitio does include the cable but it’s too short)

 

post-30795-14494999664192_thumb.jpg

 

Software

- Windows 8.1 Pro

- DIY eGPU Setup 1.x

- Latest GPU Driver from website

 

Configuration:

Hardware

- Connect Graphic card to PCI riser female >>> Connect PCI riser male to Akitio >>> Connect Akitio TB to Mac

- Connect PSU molex male to PCI riser Molex female >>> Connect PSU 6 Pin to Graphic card

- Connect Display port cable from Graphic card to Monitor

- Do Paper clip trick for the PSU

post-30795-14494999664814_thumb.jpg

 

Software

- Install DIY eGPU Setup 1.x from @Tech Inferno Fan it will extract to your c:\eGPU

- Go to c:\eGPU, right click "setup-disk-image" select "Run as administrator" then reboot

- Choose DIY eGPU Setup 1.x from your boot screen (Before Windows start)

- Press 2 to select “Menu Based Setup” (don’t press anything else it will freeze the system)

- Go to initialize and select eGPU. This will create the startup.bat file.

- Go to PCIe compaction and choose a 3.87GB/32-bit PCIe compaction on ALL except SATA+.. with closeunusedbridges = off .(no root sign) This will create the required pci.bat file.

- In my and karthikrajanv’s cases this will freeze our Macbook saying "Remove disk a, Insert disk b" at the end of the compaction if it is, please following this:

- Force Shutdown by holding power button

- Reboot into DIY eGPU Setup 1.x again

- Go to PCI Compaction > Edit pci.bat and change all a:x.x and b:x.x to 0a:x.x and 0b:x.x (Beware the letters must be stick together not a space between them) then press F10 and go to File and Save or just press Ctrl+S then Go to Test Run and test it

- See if the right side of the menu shows “PCI Write” and “all_alloc (256MB)” are “YES”

- Reboot to DIY eGPU 1.x Setup again this time press 6 (Chainload using MBR) it will go to boot screen then press 1 “Automated Startup via Startup.bat” then boot to

 

Windows 8.1

 

In Windows 8.1

- The Intel HD4000 will not be able to use.

- Go to Nvidia Control Panel >>> Set up multiple displays from the left menu.

- Choose which display you want to use eGPU only or both then click Apply

 

Booting eGPU

- Turn on MacBook Pro and select DIY eGPU Setup 1.x

- Choose eGPU in Initialize like Software Setup

- Test run (not necessary but for making sure)

- Go to Chainloader and press Test then press 6 (Chainload using MBR) it will go to boot screen then press 1 “Automated Startup via Startup.bat” then boot to Windows 8.1

 

Troubleshooting

Like karthikrajanv’s post. My system has the same problem while starting eGPU sometimes (many) MacBook Pro will not boot in to BIOS. It will freeze at the white screen after the chime even I press alt to choose the drive it still freeze after I choose Bootcamp (though I can go to OS X without any problem).

At first I thought my problem is different and I almost give up on eGPU but after many tries I found 3 solutions that might work

1. Boot up normally if lucky it will go straight to select boot Windows or DIY

2. If it freeze try disconnect yellow and black wire from Akitio like karthikrajanv’s post and replug at Menu Based (But mine still can’t find eGPU after that even though I press F5, weird?)

3. If it freeze try disconnect yellow and black wire from Akitio shutdown both Akitio and MacBook Pro boot up everything then reconnect the yellow black cable

 

These give me 2/5 times for successfully boot into Windows with eGPU so I’m okay with this and waiting for refresh of the next MacBook Pro to replace this one with less hassle. LOL

 

edit: I tried using 90 degree riser between the card to raiser and the booting performance is greatly increased. It's now almost no problem at boot up.

Here are 3DMark score for 960 compare to 650m (same system except gpu)

960: http://www.3dmark.com/3dm/6203202

650m: http://www.3dmark.com/3dm/6205394

 

post-30795-14494999664419_thumb.jpg

post-30795-14494999664619_thumb.jpg

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Are you considering to put it in a case?

You get a nice Physics score in 3Dmark, have you already done any CPU voltage reduction?

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Yes, now they're in RVZ01 but if I can use the Molex to Barrel instead of riser I will DIY the Akitio case to mount them instead.

And no, I didn't do anything with the CPU. Is there anything wrong about my setup?

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Nothing wrong :D

But you can lower your CPU voltage a bit to improve boost clock stability: Intel XTU tool

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Hi @Dschijn,

 

I have the hardware for a eGPU setup 

Macbook ProRetina 13" Late 2012

Akitio TB2

Galax GTX 970

PSU

PCIe x16 Raiser   

 

I used @goalque's script to setup OSX too, but was sad to realise that the internal display in Mac cannot be powered by the eGPU, had not planned to get a new monitor 

 

And was not so sure about the Windows route - 25-30 GB free in SSD + Windows OS + @Tech Inferno Fan  Setup 1.3x script even after which an external monitor is a recommended approach.

 

Needs some advice please.... 

 

 

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@Zoheb There is not a real pleasent way of gaming on the internal display in OSX (imho).

Best option is to use Windows 8.1 and you shouldn't have to use the Setup 1.3 there.

I am not sure how good the performance will be since you only have TB1 and a Dual Core CPU.

Best option (and the easisest) is to use it with an external monitor.

 

Why did you go for a riser? We try to convince people NOT to use them.

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just keeping my options open to return stuff it does not work out .. :) 

 

eventually will move into the enclosure that is the reason i got the Galax card .. but it looks like i am still a couple hundred bucks away ..

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I have almost the same setup with you, but there's some bottle neck issues.

 

Hardware:

  • Macbook Pro Retina Mid 2012 (thunderbolt 1)
  • NVIDIA GTX Titan
  • Akitio box
  • 850W ATX PSU

Softwares:

  • OSX 10.11.5
  • Windows 10 pro (BIOS External USB 3.0 drive)
  • WebDriver: latest
  • Cuda Drivers: latest
I've test a few times on Windows and OSX, I found that Windows system is more stable than OSX. When I try to do some benchmark such as Unigine Heaven or Valley, it just freeze after a few minutes, sometimes it can't not even reach the result and freeze, I wonder if it's because of the power supply of the PCI-e slot, but refers to what Nando told us https://www.techinferno.com/index.php?/forums/topic/5661-us189-akitio-thunder2-pcie-box-16gbps-tb2/&do=findComment&comment=115060
Other than Molex to barrel plug, there's no modification needed for the Akitio PCB board right? Does anyone know how to fix it?

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In my case eGPU with OSX is far more stable than Windows with goalque's script it works almost flawlessly with only 2 problems (Safari stuttering and Sleep-Wake though there are ways to fix them)

 

My setup doesn't use riser anymore just the card on Akitio. Since my PSU is fully modular I use PCIe to PCIe for the card and 6Pin to barrel to power the Akitio.

 

I can say that it almost 90% working with Windows except Pre-booting to windows is quite random (like 2-3 times to boot on) and I can't run it with updated Windows 10 but with the old released Windows 10 is good to go (also Windows 8 and 8.1).

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