Create Thread: E7440 + GeForce GTX 750 TI = Great Success

Discussion in 'e-GPU (External Graphics) Discussion' started by bennni, Aug 30, 2018.

  1. bennni

    bennni Notebook Evangelist

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    I decided to throw together a budget EGPU, with a used 750TI and the GDC Beast connector - running into the vacant M-PCIe slot on my E7440. I don't play super demanding games but some of them (Hitman Absolution being the main culprit) were really struggling with the iGPU of the Haswell CPU. Many games suffered poor framerates but a few such as Hitman were unplayable on some certain levels. We're talking circa 5 FPS level of terrible.

    So, the goal was simple: add an eGPU and allow these games to be played at a decent FPS - if it allowed them to be played at a higher settings, then all the better. A few factors made this attractive - the E7440 has a very easy (Although not as easy as the E6410) to access M-PCIe slot and there was no BIOS weirdness or whitelist. BIOS issues seem to be a problem for other people – in my experience, Latitudes don’t care what cards are plugged into the M-PCIe.
    Unfortunately, there is no M.2 PCIe connection, so it’s still restricted to a single PCIE lane - but not much can be done about this. On the other hand, it’s PCIE Version 2, which means a more bandwidth. The Dell PSU has a huge power brick but is not too heavy – I still feel that it’s better than using an ATX power supply, since my card is low power. In truth, I already had the Dell PSU, which made this a no-brainer.

    I used the following parts:
    1. PSU: Dell DA-2 Series 12V, 18A – 220W PSU (Used – 28 USD)
    2. GPU M-PCIe dock: EXP GDC Beast AC774 (New – 30USD)
    3. GPU: NVidia GeForce 750TI (Used - 87.62 USD)

    Set-Up by doing the following:
    1. Plug Dell PSU into the 8 pin connector of the EGPU Dock.
    2. Insert GPU into EXP GDC Beast EGPU dock
    3. Insert M-PCIe connector into M-PCIe slot of E7440
    4. Connect EGPU to monitor
    5. Turn the system on

    I was surprised at how plug-and-play the system was – no settings needed to be changed in the BIOS. Went straight through to the Windows log-in page. Windows 10 update found the GeForce drivers straight away and installed them with no effort required. I felt a bit deflated – I’d prepared myself for the same level of troubleshooting as setting up Hackintosh but it just worked. The internal monitor remains turned off when connected to the EGPU and the signal was passed through to the external monitor just fine.

    So, how does it play those games? Very, very well, is the answer. Hitman Absolution runs consistently at about 50-60 FPS on high settings. I’d previous run some benchmarks, just to get an idea of what the iGPU was achieving, so I decided to run some new ones. Regardless of how bottlenecked the card is, the results speak for themselves. I’ve included some screenshot below:

    Unigine Superposition 720 - Integrated Graphics - 1420

    Unigine Superposition 720 - Integrated Graphics - 1420.JPG

    Unigine Superposition 1080 medium - Integrated Graphics - 516

    Unigine Superposition 1080 medium - Integrated Graphics - 516.JPG

    Unigine Superposition 720 - GeForce- 7195

    Unigine Superposition 720 - GeForce- 7195.JPG

    Unigine Superposition 1080 medium - Geforce - 2898

    Unigine Superposition 1080 medium - Geforce - 2898.JPG

    I'll add some more results in a second post...
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
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  2. bennni

    bennni Notebook Evangelist

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    Cinebench - Integrated - 22.26 FPS

    Cinebench - Integrated.JPG

    Cinebench - GeForce - 70.65 FPS

    Cinebench - Geforce.JPG

    3D Mark Time Spy - Integrated - 198

    3dmark timespy 1080 - 198.JPG

    3D Mark Time Spy - GeForce- 1299

    3dmark timespy 1080 - Geforce - 1299.JPG

    3D Mark Sky Diver - GeForce - 10460

    3dmark skydiver - geforce - 10460.JPG
     
  3. bennni

    bennni Notebook Evangelist

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    Two More images:

    IMG_20180830_000254.jpg

    GPU-Z

    gpuz.JPG

    GPU-Z was reporting a X1.1 PCIE speed at first - it's actually confirmed now as X1.2.

    If there are any benchmarks that you'd like to see, feel free to comment below and I'll do my best to post the results.

    I reckon that it should be possible to use Optimus for this setup but my system seems to be presenting issues. I will try sleeping the system and then hotplugging the Beast connector to the M-PCIe slot. From what I can tell, the PCI compression should allow better performance.

    Thanks
    Benni.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
  4. bennni

    bennni Notebook Evangelist

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    OK, so a quick update...

    The EXP GDC HDMI cable hangs quite cleanly out of the system as standard however it has a habit of getting snagged on furniture etc... I added a M-PCIe extender and it's made for a less annoying set-up. I'm not fully satisfied with how the ribbon cable is exposed but so far it's held fine. Now I can just plug the EXP GDC connector in externally - it is necessary to be careful though and I would not recommend this if you need to be connected to the eGPU on a daily basis.

    Haven't experienced any effect on performance or unreliability as a result. Cost about 15 bucks from eBay, although I did have to wait forever for the item to arrive from China.

    Still can't get Optimus working but it's not a huge deal - has enough performance for what I require from it. Tried halting the boot process and connecting the eGPU, sleeping Windows and connecting - neither works. I have a feeling that PCIe hotplug support is not present or is blocked. If anyone has any suggestions, kindly hit me with a PM or post in this thread.

    IMG_20180925_171309.jpg
     
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