Which external graphic card would you advise?

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Panoptical
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Tue Apr 25, 2017 9:08 pm

Hi Rombout: Thats what i am finding. I set the node up on imac 2014, and rendered presto mc with
Limits:
Time (min) 10
Samples 1024
macbook pro 2016 8 minutes 16 seconds to complete , imac 2014, 8 minutes an 32 seconds. image looks the same in both cases.
So doesnt make a diff wether i am using TB3 or TB2 or rendering from macbook pro 2016 or imac 2014.

What is interesting is that when i rendered on the macbook pro, and the imac 2014 and imac 2013 (with NVIDIA GeForce 780) as nodes, the imac 2014 contribution was 10% and imac 2013, contribution was 20%.
The card makes a big difference.
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Anthony
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Wed Apr 26, 2017 4:38 am

Alas these are uncharted waters here so no way I can provide an accurate response to the question. You can render with 1x PCI Express mode btw as I have seen some PCI Express extender kits so Thunderbolt 2 is more than enough.
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Rombout
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Wed Apr 26, 2017 7:32 am

Perhaps with IR it would show a bit but these setups are made for game engines. I think playing hi FPS game does need a lot more transfer data then render data of a still image. But im no tech guru.
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Anthony
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Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:04 am

No I would disagree, what happens in IR mode is that your rendered image is 720p. The viewport frame buffer is rendered by your local display GPU but the image content being refreshed is delivered by your rendering GPU (which can also be your display GPU).

How much bandwidth would you need for transferring a 720p image in real-time from your GPU through the PCI Express data bus to main memory? In terms of actual size, you're talking about 4Mb/s (1280x720x32bpp/8/1024) and with double buffer 8MB/s. I think this type of bandwidth is more than enough even for the most primitive data bus standards (and even Thunderbolt gen1 does that).
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Panoptical
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Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:57 pm

HI TWC: I've got my eGPU running on my imac 2014. Works fine. What did you do about a monitor? Currently im am using a 2k monitor until i get the display port emulator. Seems silly to buy a new monitor when my imac is 5k. Did you use an emulator so you can use the imac screen?
Thx
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Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:27 am

Hello mate,

As I only needed cuda acceleration I run the node/card headless using the egpu.kext on egpu.io rather than use it for primary display. This is the best setup for simple cuda acceleration. If you need the node for other stuff like games (or adobe apps as they don't currently work right headless) then the faux display adapter/emulator thing is the way to go.

Cheers
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Panoptical
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Mon May 01, 2017 11:33 pm

TWC: That works- thanks! Only weird thing is the start up i.e. screen appearing to freeze and then upon sleep and rewake it works!
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Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:47 pm

I am looking for an external graphics card that will support Thea renders features and run on Mac Metal (Mojave). It appears there are some older Nvidia cards that are supported by metal. It also appears I should be using Nvidia if I want to use Thea.

But how old is too old? There are references to age such as "Maxwell and newer". I have no idea age is being indicated and what features of Thearender are supported.( I suppose Optix denoising won't work on Mac in any case). I'd like to get something that will get me a few more years before I just go ahead and buy a windows machine.

(I need to use a Mac PowerBook Pro for work--needs to be a Mac and portable). I want to move toward Thea Render, for SketchUp so any advice is appreciated.

I've looked at a couple old external card suggestions from Apple. Might get them used/cheap, but are they worth the trouble?

I'm sorry, I've looked through the thread but some of it is old (now that we are faced with Mojave) and a lot of it is beyond me my comprehension. Thanks!
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nigec
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Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:05 pm

going by this
viewtopic.php?f=167&p=185365#p185365
Kepler onwards should be ok, currently compute 2.x cards work but they are on borrowed time

The Optix denoiser and whether that is supported I don't know, I have a card that's going to be defunked soon
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Rombout
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Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:56 pm

Well I'm not sure how old that MacBook Pro is, but you at least need a thunderbird 2 port to use external cards. It's a lot of hustling Ng I believe to get it to work on MacBook with tb2

There are some links to egpu forums which show certain MacBooks with an egpu
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