Alienware Graphics amp question

Discussion in 'Alienware' started by Phoenix, Apr 15, 2018.

  1. Phoenix

    Phoenix Super Tweaker

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    If you want to connect an external monitor, do you connect the external monitor cable to the laptop or to the graphics amp itself or to the video card in the graphics amp?
     
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  2. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    Amp. Also don't get high end GPU's they will get bottlenecked.
     
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  3. Phoenix

    Phoenix Super Tweaker

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    what about for multiple monitors? i.e. if someone wants to connect using TB3, mDP, and HDMI
     
  4. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    I mean the card will simply be handled as an extra card. All cards you plug to the AMP card will be handled by the AMP card, when you connect the screen to the notebook then it will handled by the notebooks graphics solution (iGP or dGPU), however note:

    If you plug the card in your notebook instead of your AMP and use the AMP card, then the card will lose even more performance since it will have to route everything from the external card through the notebook to the monitor, instead of direcly to the monitor.
     
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  5. Phoenix

    Phoenix Super Tweaker

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    I see a typical graphics card has 3 mini display ports and one HDMI so thanks for the info about having to connect the monitors only to the GPU in the graphics amp to get the best performance and not connect one to the TB3 port on the laptop

    [​IMG]imagehosting
     
  6. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    Just make sure you don't mix anything crazy. The higher end the card the more the nerf.

    [​IMG]

    The performance is generally really unstable on external cards. The average seems decent, but the lows are really a problem. So be careful with that. I wouldn't really recommend using anything above a 1060 for this kind of setup. If you have a 1080 and just want to play for fun on a notebook and got a 1080 arond, go for it, but would never recommend buying a 1080 specifically for eGPU stuff.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. Phoenix

    Phoenix Super Tweaker

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    Wow that's crazy man, so Alienware still didn't fix the initial issues plaguing the graphics amp to this date? And there I was thinking one could buy an Alienware 17 R5 now and get the graphics amp for when the next gen GPUs are out to be more future proof
     
  8. rinneh

    rinneh Notebook Virtuoso

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    You are showing TB3 results. Which runs over PCH and thus causing more degradation in performance. I am running a heavily OC-ed 1070 (2100mhz) in an AGA for 2 years and recently I use my AGA on the newer AW15R3 which also has a 1070 built in. Both OC-ed and they perform pretty much identical which just a very very very slight edge for the 1070GTX in the AGA. What you say is basically incorrect.

    The AGA is nothing more than an external PCI express port, the cable is just sending the PCI express signal back to a mini pci express slot within the laptop which is connected directly to the CPU. You cannot compare this to the TB3 setups which run through the PCH and benchmarks have shown multiple times the AGA is far more consistent in terms of performance.


    His data shown TB3 results which is not comparable to the AGA. The AGA has yet to show any bottlenecks in my setup

    TB3 solutions run on the PCH, so it has to share resources with all other devices hooked onto the PCH. Those screenshots are from Jayz2cents channel where he tested a MSI laptop with a TB3 external dock.
     
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  9. Danishblunt

    Danishblunt Notebook Virtuoso

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    The newest interface has a max bandwitch of 30GB/s, TB 3 has 32GB/s. You cannot run a 1070 not nerfed, unless they made a 2018 version that magicially runs with much higher bandwitdh, which I'm not aware off.

    EDIT: nvm seems like the AGA uses PCI-E 4x which is around 40GB/s?

    Do me a favor and make a screenshot of GPU-Z.

    Also your AGA also goes through the PCH, Dell lied to you. If you want proof, go open HWinfo64, check your PCH tab and u'll see the card there.

    Also a notebook GTX 1070 (especially in a smaller notebook like your R3) runs significantly slower than a desktop 1070. If you have the same speeds on a desktop GTX 1070 wth a AW 3 1070, then you already confirmed, that there is a severe bottleneck.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    So yeah, no way you'll run a GTX 1070 stock let alone OCed at full speeds on PCI-E 4x.

    @Phoenix:
    Maybe one day there will be a PCI-E 16x connection which would allow to run at full speed, lets hope and pray =D
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
  10. rinneh

    rinneh Notebook Virtuoso

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    I cant comment on the for example older 13inch versions with ULV cpu's if on those the AGA is running on PCH or not But in the AW15R2/AW17R3, AW15R3/AW17R4 it does not run grom the PCH.

    Its marked in HWinfo as connected to one of the PCI busses as you can see in my screenshot. Not to the PCH slots which are filled except for one by my SSD's and Wifi card.

    Also as you can see from the GPU screenshot it is running at 4X speeds. same as what HWinfo says for that port. The AGA works by fully disabling the internal Geforce GPU and it is a reroute to an external port. That is why you also cannot see both GPU's at the same time.

    4X is still not a huge bottleneck for any current GPU out there as proven by various benchmarks. https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/NVIDIA/GeForce_GTX_1080_PCI_Express_Scaling/

    As you can see in the techpowerup article. Running the card through a PCH-PCI express slot (chipset results) matters.



    Both my 1070's are overclocked by the way thats why they score almost identical

    1070gtx in the AGA @ 2050, 7700HQ https://www.3dmark.com/fs/15122509
    laptop 1070 running at 1950 (but has more cuda cores) https://www.3dmark.com/fs/15120340


    So no TB3 and the AGA are not comparable at all. The AGA performs almost with no performance degradation (or lets say very minor). TB3 however is unfortunately handicapped by the fact that it is connected to the PCH and also has to deal with protocol overhead over TB3.

    Why I still use the AGA you might ask? Its a nice monitor, keyboard dock and the laptop runs completely with the fans turned off under load. that huge heatsink can cool an i7 7700HQ without spinning up while gaming.
     

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    Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
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