1. You may have noticed things look a little different around here - we've switched to a new platform (XenForo) and have some new forum styles and features. This how-to guide will help you find your way around. If you find anything that looks strange, post it in this thread.

DIY eGPU experiences

Discussion in 'e-GPU (External Graphics) Discussion' started by master blaster, Sep 18, 2009.

  1. bjorm

    bjorm Notebook Consultant

    Reputations:
    39
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    30
    hi, any progress there?
     
  2. V410

    V410 Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Hello everyone
    I am new to this egpu thing kinda brainiac for me need some advice.
    Here is my config:
    Vaio TT mn11 with original expresscard slot 4gb ram 32 bit windows 7
    Integrated gma 4500
    The Pe4h+gts450 seems to be powered by the expresscard slot so adding psu doesn't changeanything . I get 2 green leds (2 and 3). The card doesn't get detected. Tried with 2 gb ram , sleep mode not ok. I have ordered setup still waiting the link for download.

    Does my laptop support egpu? ( pcie ports show x1 @ 2.5gbs but nothing like x16). Is it memory allocation issue or pcie port mapping?

    Can't seem to find wich pcie port my egpu is connected.
    2 pcie ports have errors 1200 and others occupied by wifi +igpu...
    I will post more details soon as i get the setup.


    Thanks for your help!
     
  3. fr0z3n

    fr0z3n Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Hello all,

    I am a newbie at this and I am hoping someone can point me in the right direction.

    Current Setup:
    Lenovo T510 with Nvidia NVS 3100M (with the latest BIOS)

    Trying to make a external ATI Radeon HD 6990 work with the PE4H. (6990 is probably too extreme, but its from a friends gaming machine to test the system)

    When I plug in the expresscard windows detects a new device, installs drivers, but Video card is never found. It switches the drivers to generic windows VGA drivers. No ATI card is found. No crashes, no blue screen.


    I installed the latest ATI Catalyst drivers, but that do anything new. Rebooted a couple of times, hard reboot, battery pull - still the same.

    What am i doing wrong?
    Am I missing a step? Wrong drivers?

    Any help will be greatly appreciated.
     
  4. User Retired 2

    User Retired 2 Notebook Nobel Laureate NBR Reviewer

    Reputations:
    4,127
    Messages:
    7,897
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The GTS450 will require a 120W PSU to drive it, up to 75W for the slot and the remainder for the single pci-e power connector. Suggest use an ATX PSU to get it up and running. Would be great to have a Sony TT working example.

    HD6990 is a dual-GPU card requiring 2x256MB pci-e config space to accomodate. It will be challenging to get it up and running. However, the problem with the drivers should not exist. I'd suggest use AIDA64 or Setup 1.x to probe the pci-e bus slot, see what pci-e ID is identified there, then look up your drivers INF file to ensure it's in there.

    If your T510 is a switchable graphics version with Intel HD, then suggest disable the NVS3100M and run it with an NVidia Fermi or Keplar card for maximum performance.

    Lenovo T510 can run a [port3+port4] x2 link

    If you have only the NVS3100M version then to get decent smoothness would require running a x2 link. The schematic shows it has port1=wifi/mPCIe, port3=UWB/mPCIe, port4=expresscard. So you could run a [port3+4] x2 link.
     
  5. fr0z3n

    fr0z3n Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    You mentioned: "So you could run a [port3+4] x2 link."

    does this mean run two hdmi cables from the PE4H to the motherboard on the thinkpad? That means can't use the expresscard solution?
     
  6. fr0z3n

    fr0z3n Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Will x2 link still be the way to go for a single GPU video card?
    The T510 that i have does not have switch able graphics, so i am stuck with the NVS3100M.
     
  7. kizwan

    kizwan Lord Pringles

    Reputations:
    1,500
    Messages:
    3,229
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    106
    One of the cables will be connected to ExpressCard slot. What you need is one PM3N card to do x2 setup.

    BTW, did you try boot your notebook with eGPU already connected?
    Without Intel HD Graphics you can't do Optimus setup with Nvidia Fermi graphic card. So, the only way to get better/good performance is by doing x2 setup.



    @nando, I sent you PM. Please reply.
     
  8. thaatz

    thaatz Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    im trying to get chainloading to work on my setup. i have a macbook pro with windows 7 installed via bootcamp. when i use disk utility in mac os x, it tells me that my windows partition is on disk0 partition 4, so in in my menu.win, i changed it to say
    Code:
    chainloader (hd0,4)/bootmgr
    but it just sends me to a grub4dos prompt (grub>). so i typed "ls (hd[tab]" and i think my windows partition was being seen as disk1 partition 3, so i went back to change that but I get the same problem (grub prompt). how do i know for sure which partition my windows install is on, and why does it throw me to a prompt. i am missing something. can someone help me chainload my system?
    thanks.
     
  9. bjorm

    bjorm Notebook Consultant

    Reputations:
    39
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    30
    I read post about eGPU implementation with 8460p. everything ok but I'd like to ask is there any reason to not buy 8460p instead of E6320? is there possibility to change CPU for QM version as with 2560p? is there any issue I need to know before I decide buy 8460p with bargain price? I know that i need to avoid version with AMD GPU cause no switchable option issue. I'm strongly devoted to Dell but 8460p is gorgeous! :)
     
  10. User Retired 2

    User Retired 2 Notebook Nobel Laureate NBR Reviewer

    Reputations:
    4,127
    Messages:
    7,897
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    You are comparing a 12.5" 2560P, 13" Dell E6320 and 14" 8460P. It makes sense to group the first two since they are both 1366x768 units with pretty much similar specs with the 2560P being slightly lighter and has a socketted CPU. The 8460P has similar styling lines as the 2560P but bests the 2560P/E6320 by offering a 1600x900 LCD and has a factory i7-quad option. So if those features are important then it would make sense to go for a 8460P over the others. If you do get a lower dual-core i5/i7 version then you too can user upgrade it to a i7-quad since it too has a socketted cpu.

    If want a more compact unit then I'd be getting the 2560P or even look at a Lenovo X220 and Dell E6220. Though the Dell and Lenovo have soldered CPUs so no i7-quad upgrade is possible.

    I'm expecting 35W i7-quad IVB CPU options in upcoming refreshed Lenovo and Dell ultraportables though at a hefty $$premium. That will target the user wanting maximum performance in the smallest chassis.
     
  11. bjorm

    bjorm Notebook Consultant

    Reputations:
    39
    Messages:
    110
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    30
    thanks for answer.

    I've been considering 2560p but I'm afraid of its size. There is no a big differences between E6320 but direction arrows scares me. At this moment there is no bargains for 2560p in poland. I found a 8460p as bargain with WWAN, 8GB RAM an on-site warranty with price lower than for 2560p without WWAN and on-site. I do not need HD+ and QM for this moment because of use external monitors (U2312HM).QM upgrade maybe possible after IVB entry on market (to reduce QM sandy bridge prices). I wouldn't be keen on to pay huge prices for IVB QM.

    I used to have Vostro 3450 and his size was good, according to descriptions 8460p is not bigger than V3450. another reason is troubles eGPU with E6320.
     
  12. SimoxTav

    SimoxTav Notebook Evangelist

    Reputations:
    273
    Messages:
    443
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    30
    I was looking to replace the flat mHDMI cable of the PE4L 2.1 with a standard one (round) or another type of cable (to increase its length and make the curves easier). Any suggestions on what kind of cable should i use?
     
  13. fr0z3n

    fr0z3n Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5

    Thanks for the information.

    I have ordered PM3N card.

    What would be the fastest single eGPU supported with this setup?

    Will the ATI Radeon HD7970 work and perform well?
     
  14. V410

    V410 Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
     
  15. User Retired 2

    User Retired 2 Notebook Nobel Laureate NBR Reviewer

    Reputations:
    4,127
    Messages:
    7,897
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    BPlus' rounded cable certainly was easier to handle and might work at pci-e 2.0 speed if soldered onto the ends since it was the mHDMI connectors that caused the problems. I'd anticipate you'd need to shorten the cable to get reliable transmission. Consider that at pci-e 1.0 speed, their maximum rounded cable length for reliable transmission was 2m. With the flat cable they were able to extend that out to 5m. Running the individual wires in a parallel fashion minimizing crosstalk.

     
  16. kizwan

    kizwan Lord Pringles

    Reputations:
    1,500
    Messages:
    3,229
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    106
    Successful eGPU allocation to 36-bit space using DSDT override

    I changed the range a little bit <strike>but it doesn't matter (see below), I think</strike>. (Edit) It does matter. My memory range is suitable for up to 12GB of RAM while the suggested range (see below) is suitable for up to 48GB of RAM.
    Code:
    QWordMemory (ResourceProducer, PosDecode, MinFixed, MaxFixed, Cacheable, ReadWrite,
        0x000000000000000,  // Granularity
        0x000000320000000,  // Range Minimum,  set it to 12.5GB
        0x000000F0FFFFFFF,  // Range Maximum,  set it to 60.25GB
        0x000000000000000,  // Translation Offset
        0x000000BF0000000,  // Length calculated by Range Max - Range Min.
        ,, , AddressRangeMemory, TypeStatic)
    Modified DSDT: dsdt_Dell 1557_C8000000_36bit.aml

    Boot procedure:-
    1. Boot with eGPU turn OFF
    2. Enter Setup 1.x OR halt windows loading by pressing F8
    3. Turn ON eGPU
    4. If in Setup 1.x, press F5 & make sure eGPU is detected
    5. If in Setup 1.x, Chainload
    6. Boot windows

    [​IMG]

    suggested_rangeI also tried the suggested range from nando4's DSDT Override page.
    Code:
    QWordMemory (ResourceProducer, PosDecode, MinFixed, MaxFixed, Cacheable, ReadWrite,
        0x000000000000000,  // Granularity
        0x000000C20000000,  // Range Minimum,  set it to 48.5GB
        0x000000E0FFFFFFF,  // Range Maximum,  set it to 56.25GB
        0x000000000000000,  // Translation Offset
        0x0000001F0000000,  // Length calculated by Range Max - Range Min.
        ,, , AddressRangeMemory, TypeStatic)
    36-bit allocation also successful.

    Modified DSDT: dsdt_Dell 1557_C8000000_36bit_C2.aml

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2015
  17. Blackett

    Blackett Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    5
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    After spending quite some time on following latest egpu progress and watching the recent deceleration with pcie 2.0 extender kit (ofc I know there're a couple of functioning units on sale currently :) ), I ultimately decided not to wait any longer and to come up with another, equivalent solution.
    Well, at the time I spotted this post, I knew it is possible to make an egpu on my own with my (limited) ordinary engineering skills and instruments, since pinout and wiring has never been an issue with all the required documents being published by pci sig and bplus (schematics) for a long time.

    To cut a long story short ... Since Ivq Bridge and therefore the development and commercialization of the (most) promising (in terms of speed and egpu purpose) interface Thunderbolt still lag behind its (former) schedule, I've built my own adapter for presumedly not expresscard 2.0 complaint dell 1340 (although spec sheets contradict in this case), just to bridge the 3-4 months till computex and products announcements:

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I'm still working on suitable case and and system's performance e.g. due to a successful established 2.0 connection (wondering whether it is possible with my current device at all :confused: )
     
  18. thaatz

    thaatz Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    so i was able to get past the grub prompt by typing "quit", but then it gives "error, chainboot failed"

    when i open the grub prompt to check my hard drives by typing "ls (hd" and [tab], it tells me my available drives are "hd0 hd1 hd2". i have 2 hard drives in my laptop. when i type "ls (hd1" and tab, it shows me the partitions in my first hard drive. My windows partition (the only one partitioned as ntfs) is labled as partition 3, so my menu.win looks like this atm (the only thing in the "user edittable section" now)
    Code:
    chainloader (hd1,3)/bootmgr
    however i still get a chainload error

    i have changed the chainload settings to chainload win7 in setup 1.x, but im not sure what the problem is. any help would be appreciated. perhaps i am overlooking something.
    thanks
     
  19. User Retired 2

    User Retired 2 Notebook Nobel Laureate NBR Reviewer

    Reputations:
    4,127
    Messages:
    7,897
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The disk image is mapped in as (hd0) and the first harddisk is (hd1). So the top part of menu.win7 remaps hd1 as hd0. Based on your indication that (hd1,3) is your ntfs partition, your \config\menu.win7 should have the RED line modifications below. You can even just do a test at the grub> prompt with 'chainloader (hd1,3)/bootmgr; boot' to see if it boots Win7.
    Code:
    #############################################################################
    # menu.win - boot using VISTA/W7 /bootmgr                                   #
    # Use 'grub4dos.Prompt' menu, type 'ls (hd[tab] to see drive mapping        #
    # DRV var passed by grub4dos: A=USB-FLOPPY(fd0), C=USB-HDD/DISKIMAGE(hd0)   #
    #                                                                           #
    # NOTE: Acer 3830TG will fail with a "vector probe" error. For those systems#
    # comment out the MAP lines below and chainload off a specific partition.   #
    #############################################################################
    # Quiet operation
    debug 0\ntimeout 0
    
    # Appears need the following line for highest compatibility across machines
    # If still see a A20-related chainloading halt then edit %DRV%:\fdconfig.sys
    # and change the himemx.exe /METHOD parameter as described in config.sys
    map --a20-keep-on=0
    
    #::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    # DRV=boot drv. If it's C then swap real hdd(hd1) as hd0 and set harddrive 
    # count=1 so the find doesn't use USB drive (clobbered USB sup)
    # NOTE: Acer 3830TG users getting "vector probe" hang during chainloading 
    #       will need to comment this out and chainload off a specific partition.
    #::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    # Cater for USB-HDD boot/clobbered USB controller
    echo .
    echo ÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄ
    echo If hangs with "Vector Probe" error then edit your config: Chainloader->!Edit
    echo ÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄÄ
    if "%DRV%"=="C" map (hd1) (hd0)
    if "%DRV%"=="C" map --harddrives=1
    if "%DRV%"=="C" map --rehook
    
    #::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    # User edittable section below
    #::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    #Use find to set root to location of Win7/Vista's /bootmgr then chainload it.
    [B][COLOR="Red"]#find --set-root --ignore-floppies --ignore-cd /bootmgr
    #chainloader /bootmgr
    [/COLOR][/B]
    #OR chainload bootmgr off a specific partition, eg:hd0,1
    [B][COLOR="Red"]chainloader (hd0,3)/bootmgr[/COLOR][/B]
     
  20. dav_jw

    dav_jw Notebook Guru

    Reputations:
    126
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    15
    I've been reading this thread since a long time, and thought I should contribute.

    I recently sold my G73 and, thanks to this thread and Nando4's compilation of egpu-approved notebooks, I chose to purchase an Elitebook 8460p.

    Today, I received my PE4L V2.1a kit, which I ordered on ebay (redtrontech) on 01/03/12. I read about issues regarding this particular model, but my sample did not have any problem (shipped on March 14th).

    I used an antique LiteOn 300W PSU (19A on the 12V) and an almost-as-antique Geforce GT 430. ExpressCard Port set at x2 in BIOS, switches set accordingly with no delay. Notebook specs in sig, OS is Win7 Ultimate x64.

    The installation was surprisingly simple and straight-forward; you wouldn't believe at first that those kind of things are plug-and-play, but it was (almost).

    Basically, all I had to do was to connect everything, plug the card in the notebook with the computer booted-up, open the Device Manager, scan for hardware changes. The card was detected as a generic VGA adapter. Then, I installed the latest Nvidia (desktop) drivers (296.10), unplugged the card and rebooted. According to a post by danenick1212 describing his experience with the same notebook, it is necessary to plug the card just after the POST to have the card working with the integrated display, which is what I wanted. I did no further testing on the matter, so I cannot confirm if this is really necessary. With the drivers installed, the only thing left to do was to set the e-gpu as default in the Nvidia control panel.

    I did not do any benchmarking yet, I will probably update this post in the next few days, I, however, tried to play Mass Effect 3. The results surpassed my expectations: around 40 FPS, with all graphic options enabled, 8xAF and 1600x900. On the internal LCD.

    Edit: Ran some benchmarks, will update when I have time for more.

    External screen, pcie 2.0
    3dm06: 7488
    RE5 : 57.4 FPS
    DMC4 : 67.8 FPS
    3dmV : 3611
    Heaven : 318
    3dm11 : 964

    [​IMG]

    Internal screen, pcie 2.0

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Edit: Upgraded to a GTX 460 1GB and a Corsair CX430. That card is impressive, from a price/performance standpoint. I did a quick benchmark on "The Witcher 2", with a light overclock. 43 fps average on a 25 minutes gameplay run. 1600x900 (internal screen), Ultra preset with ubsersampling and cinematic DOF disabled.

    Some benchmarks:

    All scores on the internal LCD, @ 849/1698/1920.

    3dm06*: 16883
    3dmV: 14033
    3dm11: 3595

    *1280x800 resolution used
     

Share This Page