Best External GPU[Thunderbolt 3,Macbook Pro]:Ultimate Guide(2018)

External GPU or eGPU are great choice for people who want to convert their Mac or Laptops into main stream laptops with high graphical power. GPU are what make the windows laptops the leader of the computing industry. Most of the eGPU in the market work on the thunderbolt 3 type port as it can transfer data as a speed of 40Gbps. So, we write an ultimate guide to pick best external GPU for you

If you have a business laptop or a MacBook that is great on its own but lacks the power of a dedicated graphics card, this best thunderbolt 3 external GPU For laptops in 2018 are a great option for you to switch your business laptop to a gaming station whenever needed by just plugging in the thunderbolt 3 ports.

Before Reading: What I really think of the current external GPU

External GPU provide a great relief for the people who need the graphical power but owns a MacBook or a professional business laptop and cannot afford to get a separate gaming setup. Even though the eGPU are not as efficient as the same card being used inside your laptop but that is obvious considering the power losses and latency. Most of the external graphic cards work using the Thunderbolt 3 or USB type C ports. The eGPU can be a great investment and you need to gather some knowledge before purchasing one to make it worth.

Why you should buy an EGPU?

The EGPU is a great option if the laptop you own lacks the power to run modern day games or you work on professional 3D software and your computer can’t handle the pressure without external power. For those of you who own a business laptop but like to play hard-core games and don’t want to buy a separate laptop for the purpose, this External GPU for laptop can be a great option because you can just plug in your GPU whenever you need the power and remove when the battery life is a priority.

The current cutting-edge technology

The external graphic cards are great powerhouses of modern day that can boost up your frame rates and improve the quality of graphics when you plug in the dock to your laptop. Mostly a thunderbolt cord is used to power the computer. Installing this eGPU is as simple as installing a regular card, just install the graphic drivers and reboot your computer and you are ready. Once you set it up, your computer will work on the External GPU rather than the laptop GPU which usually lacks the power.

Best External GPU[Thunderbolt 3,Macbook Pro]:Ultimate Guide(2018)

A large variety of GPU are available for laptops in the market. These eGPU come with different docks and can be easily plugged in to a thunderbolt 3 port or the USB type C. These external graphic cards are of variable power and are easily compatible with modern devices. You won’t want to buy a very expensive card and then find that it won’t be able to work to its best on the device you own. So this guide will tell you about the best external GPU for laptop in the market in 2018 so you can choose which of them suits you best.

How we picked and tested

All the products that are listed in this guide have been separately tested under great load and are of premium quality. All the listed docks are also fully tested differently depending how power full the card it supports are.

These  eGPU were compared to each other on a standard benchmark  including the low budget and very high quality cards for laptops.

These external GPU were all checked to be compatible with modern day laptops and the input port was usually found to be USB type C or the standard thunderbolt.

Why you should trust me

Being a professional tech tester I am fully aware of what all are the basic requirements needed by you weather you are a professional worker or a casual gamer. With years of experience and working with these types of techs daily I am confident about my picks and can state that I am less to none when it comes to graphic cards.

Best External GPU

This guide will tell you about the different types of external graphic cards that you can easily purchase and worth your money. All these are great products depending on your personal needs. All of these products will provide you with power and low latency that is the primary objective.

Top 1: “Akitio Node”

About Akitio Node

The AKiTiO Node is one of the most affordable eGPU boxes in the market in 2018 at a price of 250 dollars. Currently this product only supports the AMD powered GPU for the MacOS High Sierra but multiple cards including the NVIDIA 10 series are supported over the windows 10 computers. This Node comes with a Built-in 400W SFX power supply that provides extra power to GPU . the x16 PCIe slot supports all the full length and full height cards so that you can plug in your favourite card from any manufacturer in this AKiTiO Node  that works on thunderbolt 3 port.

Pros and cons

Pros

  1. Thunderbolt 3 provides lightning fast speeds up to 40 Gbps
  2. The PCIe slot supports all full-length and full-height cards
  3. The carry handle makes it easy to carry.

Cons

  1. The AKiTiO Node only supports the AMD GPU for the Mac OS.

Bottom line

The AKiTiO Node makes it possible to upgrade you laptop to a full workstation class device at a very affordable price. This product is very compact and made of great quality metal. The slot can support most of the graphic cards in market. This Node from Akitio is a great product for personal use.

Top 2:  “Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 350 Bundle”

About Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 350 Bundle

This Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 350 Bundle includes a 8GB sapphire Pulse Radeon Rx 580 graphic card which is connected to your laptop or computer with the help of a thunderbolt 3 port. The 350W power supply gives an output of 60W to charge your laptop. This box comes with a 0.5M 40GB thunderbolt cable. This Breakaway Box supports MACs with thunderbolt support what have macOS high Sierra even with no boot camp supported. The MacOs can support up to 2 breakaway boxes. Most of the windows PC with windows 10 and thunderbolt 3 are supported by this breakaway box.

Pros and cons

Pros

  1. This breakaway box is supports in MACOS Sierra.
  2. This box comes with Radeon Rx 580 8 GB graphic card
  3. It works with thunderbolt 3 ports.

Cons

  1. If by mistake you unplug the enclosure while your Mac is running, your OS will crash so you have to be careful with that.

Bottom line

Sonnet eGFX Breakaway Box 350 Bundle with 8GB of RX 580 is great gpu that costs around 500 dollars and is worth each penny. This is the ultimate choice for high level graphic designers or 3D modeling due to the 8GB graphic memory it provides by its thunderbolt 3 port.

Top 3: “ASUS ROG-XG-STATION”

About ASUS ROG-XG-STATION

The ASUS ROG-XG-STATION-2 is an external card dock by Asus republic of gamers or ROG that lets you upgrade your tablet or laptop to the GeForce GTX 9 series GPU like 940,970,920 or higher. It supports The AMD Radeon cards of series R6 or Rx and higher. After you plug in your external graphic card in the 16x PCIe card the external power supply of 600W provides power to your card and provides your laptop computer or Mac with enough power to play any game or do any graphic intensive work. Asus itself recommends you to use this with their UX series Zen books or the Transformer 3 Pro.

Pros and cons

Pros

  1. This ASUS ROG-XG-STATION-2can support any card you want.
  2. The thunderbolt 3 type port provides you with speed of 40Gbps.
  3. This dock has been tested with Mac Books and Asus PCs.

Cons

  1. Thunderbolt 3 port is necessary to use this ASUS ROG-XG-STATION-2 to its full potential.

Bottom line

The ASUS ROG-XG-STATION-2  from Asus is a great and easy to set up device that lets you plug in your favourite GPU to your windows 10 or mac laptop with a power supply of 600W and minimum power losses. For those who want to game on their laptops this device from Asus is the best purchase.

Top 4: “Razer Core V2”

About Razer Core V2

This eGPU from razor works with windows 10 and Mac , is compatible with any external GPU and is designed for laptops with thunderbolt 3 ports to provide a speed of 40GBps. Windows 10  systems  need EPU support and RS1 with compatible GPU from NVIDIA or AMD. This box provides you a power supply of 650W and 100W for laptop charging. For mac users Macos High Sierra 10.13.2 or later is required along with a compatible graphics card from AMD. This Razer Core V2 can turn your laptop into a gaming desktop class machine with its power to add NVIDIA GeForce ,AMD graphics or even NVIDIA Quadro along with 650W power supply via USC type C to compatible laptops to providea  truly spectacular gaming experience.

Pros and cons

Pros

  1. This Razer Core V2 can support GTX 10 series graphic cards.
  2. USB type C is also supported with thunderbolt 3
  3. This case has been tested with Mac Books and different windows 10 laptops.

Cons

  1. Thunderbolt 3 port is necessary to use this Razer Core V2 to its full potential.

Bottom line

The Razer Core V2 is one of the best graphic power solutions for pro gamers or Pro editors who want to boost up their laptops. This product provides you a significant increase in power. It works on thunderbolt 3 that can provide speed of 40 Gbps.

Top 5: “Node Pro”

About Node Pro

The Node Pro is a fully certified eGPU what works on thunderbolt 3 and provides lightning fast speed of 40 Gbps. This special eGPU comes with a dedicated display port to expand your output options for additional monitor. The 2nd port included supports the thunderbolt 3, the display port devices and even USB 3.1. Both the output ports provide a power output of 60W to all the compatible laptops. The PCIe slot supports all standard full length, double width and full height cards so you can plug in any of your favourite graphic card from AMD or NVIDIA and use it on your Mac or windows PC with minimum power loss. This product comes with a thunderbolt 3 cable included in the box.

Pros and cons

Pros

  1. The Node Pro comes with a dedicated display port to expand your output options.
  2. A thunderbolt 3 cable is included in the box.
  3. The PCIe slot supports all standard cards.

Cons

  1. Some Mac users get problems when using NVIDIA cards due to drivers.

Bottom line

The Node Pro is a great produce under price range of 450 dollar that comes with a PCIe slot for you GPU and an external output for your monitor. This product works great due to the fact that both the USWB and thunderbolt ports provide you same power output and this product has a great build quality.

Comparison: Top 5 picks, what I really think of

The ASUS ROG-XG-STATION-2 is an external card dock by Asus republic of gamers that is a perfect choice for hard-core gamers who own a ROG laptop. The Razer Core V2 is one of the best graphic power solutions for professional gamers. The Node Pro is a great produce under price range of 450 dollar that comes with a PCIe slot for you GPU and an external output for your monitor. The AKiTiO Node makes it possible to upgrade you laptop to a full workstation class device at a very affordable price. All these are great choices depending on what your basic requirement is and what Os or what card you are going to use. All these docks work on thunderbolt 3 and are a great fit to be in the list.

Short Buying Guide

If you are about to buy an external GPU for your Mac or laptop you might need to look for some knowledge before going for it.  Some EGP comes with built in graphics card that provide great power at great cost. But if you have a graphic card and just need a dock then you have many options to look for.Most of the eGPU work on the thunderbolt 3 so that you can get a great speed of 40GBps needed to transfer the power.Most of the eGPU for the Mac work for the MacOS High Sierra.

Further Reading Time: Read Best gaming laptops under 500 dollars

If you need to purchase a laptop that can fulfill all your needs and cost fewer than 500 dollars then you need to check out our ultimate guide on Gaming laptops under 500 dollars. This guide will provide you detailed information on all the laptops in the market that are worth your money under the price.

Final Words

So that was all about the thunderbolt 3 external graphic cards in the market in 2018 . Each of these products were tested and observed and are fit to be in this list for a reason. It is just a matter of choice for what you might like from these top picks.

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