Top Excellent external graphics cards (eGPUs) for Mac
We have prepared a complete guide to the EGPP graphics card for Mac, where we want to explain the benefits of using an EGPU besides giving you a full offer, which you can find around Apple’s Mac computers.
In the recent months, rumors have been talked about that Apple is developing some types of helmets or specs that will bring virtual reality (VR) or augmented reality (AR) into Mac and iOS devices.
Apple updates made by your ARKit software, as seen in WWDC 2018 events, have enriched this idea. Apple also showed a new MacBook Pro using an external graphics processing unit eGPU at this event.
And it is true that the iPhone and iPad are well-suited for augmented reality, because the popularity of the game in the mobile environment nurtures the graphic potential of these devices for titles such as Pokémon Go, such as superposing graphics on real-world images .
But there is no doubt that in general, apple platform platform games are never the power of the company, compared to CPU, other manufacturers, primarily implementing graphics chips and accelerators from AMD and NVIDIA, which are their own Uses.
The software demands a lot of graphics power to run VR 3D games, and many high end Mac models still rely on integrated graphics (instead of relying on dedicated cards with a main chip).
The advantage provided by a dedicated graphics card is that they usually free up the CPU’s workload with processing units or GPUs, who have nothing to envy to the computer’s main processor.
However, there are no internal expansion slots in any Mac in the current range, which allow you to install a more powerful GPU inside, so that you can provide more graphic power to your computer.
This is because of the reason that, if you want more graphics power, then you have to resort to solutions like shown here: External graphics (EGPP) that connect to one of Mac’s ports, mainly Thunderbolt 3
What is an eGPU?
As its name suggests, an EGPP graphics is a form of accelerators that gives Mac a boost in 3D graphics segmentation performance. To be precise, an eGPU has two components that you have to buy separately.
The first is the graphics card, also known as the GPU. The current Mac model does not have internal expansion slots, so we have the possibility to connect only EGPP to its ports.
Being an external GPU, we should have a suitable box on which the card can be added and feeds it with its own power source. These boxes usually have one or several PCIe expansion slots, which are able to connect many in parallel.
Finally, this box is connected to the Mac via one of the Thunderbolt 3 ports, which avails the high speed, which can guarantee up to 40 Gbps, the fastest connection which currently supports the computer or laptop connector. Could.
Thunderbolt has become 3, even on a Windows PC, a standard port, so many eGPS solutions, which we will talk about here, support both Windows PC and Mac computer.
Budget and update
Last year, Apple launched iMac Pro, which focuses heavily on Content Developers and Virtual Reality Projects. However, the most economical version has a price of € 5,499, some are costly for some mortal pocket.
The good news is that with this release, Apple announced plans to support the external graphics card known as eGPU, with the MacOS High Sierra version. This support became a reality with the advent of MacOS 10.13.4.
What are the advantages of eGPU?
One great advantage is that you can continue to work with your normal MacBook or MacBook Pro, you can take it away from home, and when you return to your home or office, change it to a full graphics station. Connect to EggPro solution for.
However, you should keep in mind that most ECGPU solutions are sold as empty boxes, in which one or more graphic cards should be added in an additional way. This NAS storage device is an analogy for the external box in which you add a hard drive.
What graphics cards are compatible with eGPUs?
As expected, you will first need the Mac in high Sierra operating system version 10.13.4 or later.
The choice of graphics card can also be complicated. Most EGPP boxes have a standard Thunderbolt 3 interface, which ensures connection to any Mac or Next Generation PC.
The PCI expansion slot between the makers of the motherboard, in which the external box is also quite standard, so you will not have any problem finding the graphic of the brand AMD or Nvidia, which dominate the market.
Unfortunately, while writing this article, High Sierra 10.13.4 only works with a limited selection of AMD graphics cards, the list that we offer below:
- AMD Radeon RX 470 and RX 570
- AMD Radeon RX 480 and RX580
- AMD Radeon Pro WX 7100
- AMD Radeon RX Vega 56
- AMD Radeon RX Vega 64
- AMD Vega Frontier Edition Air
- AMD Radeon Pro WX 9100
At this point, you should keep in mind that there are high end graphics cards such as Radeon Pro and Vega models that require powerful power supply. The manufacturer of the outer box usually indicates the values, for which we should pay special attention.
Some well-known manufacturers like HP and Lenovo create their own eGPU solutions with graphics that are already installed inside. You can also personalize your solution and buy boxes and graphics separately.
The technique for Mac is still new, so it should be expected that in the near future, the development of drivers and the use of Nvidia graphics will come in support, a brand in which Apple has traditionally gained confidence for its graphics .
In the meantime, you can find a summary of the best EGPP outer graphics solutions below, with which you can convert your Mac into a real graphics station which is capable of running high-end graphics software or 3D games.
Excellent external graphics (eGPUs) for Mac
1. Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box
Power Supply: 375 W
While testing the beta development program for McNet High Sierra, Sonnet’s EGFX Breakaway Box was the official EGPU of the Apple, so it is one of the most popular products among the Mac community.
The manufacturer also has a long history of building products for Apple Computer, so it stands as a trusted solution with professional support for Mac users.
Breakaway box prices of EGPP starts on the basis of the power of the selected configuration of the box and the power supplied by the power supply, and think of using one or several graphic cards associated with each other.
Inside, you have a single PCI slot for placing an AMD or Nvidia full-size graphics card (though the guidelines of the applet are only for using AMD). If you use the MacBook, it connects through the Thunderbolt 3 port with the possibility of charging at the same time.
2. Razer Core V2
Power Supply: 500 W
Core V2 solution is designed primarily to use with the range of razor-branded Windows-based notebooks, but the current V2 model uses a standard Thunderbolt 3 port that will also work with Mac.
To do this, you should consider getting it with a compatible AMD graphic. The company’s experience in games is clearly in this product with professional finish in terms of cooling and quiet operation.
If you are also thinking about using eGPU for a gaming environment with your Mac, then Razer Core V2 becomes the most suitable solution. Its metal box has finished to ensure the cooling of the components.
You can also play with some visualization and lighting effects, you can connect them with your mouse or keyboard for razor games, many of which are also compatible with Mac.
Its 500-watt power supply is powerful enough to hold most of the graphics cards, regardless of their length or power. It also includes the USB 3 and Ethernet port to work as a hub or hub
3. Akitio Node Lite
Power Supply: 400 W
The solution, marketed by Akitio, provides compatibility with AMD Radeon RX570, RX580, WX7100 graphics for Mac. If you want to use it for Windows PC, you can also use the Nvidia GPU, as we have already said.
The brand is known in the market for offering a wide variety of external box solutions, and is known not only for graphics but also for NAS-type storage devices, or external sound solutions.
The design presented by the Node Lite model is quite simple, with a metal finish and a single internal PCIe expansion slot, in which the power supply to connect the PC or MAC and the Thunderbolt port located on the back.
You can find a node Pro model in addition to the Thunderbolt 3 port offering, there is a displayplot video output to connect to an external monitor, which adds additional functionality to use as a secondary display with your MacBook laptop is.
4. Mantis Venus (MZ-02)
- RRP: $ 389
- Power supply: 500 w
This brand, which sells its products directly on its website, currently you will not be able to get your equipment through Amazon. Therefore, if you find it interesting, then you should know that you have to get it directly in your online store.
Physically, the box is rather voluntary, but you have to positively assess the fact that you can get to install each other connected 3 graphics cards, what AMD says to work in parallel in Crossfire mode is. Imagine the performance you can get.
Commented Mantas Venus box also has a SATA connector, so that you can add a hard drive or SSD to complement the storage presented by your Mac.
Already in the connectivity section, Venus Mantix is very versatile with a Thunderbolt 3 port and five other USB 3 ports (on the front and back three), with Ethernet port to facilitate connections from different systems or platform PCs Or MAC.