Does anyone have an external graphic card for laptop (windows)?

Hello folks!

So, I was thinking about the possibility of upgrading my system which has an Intel Iris Xe graphic card with an external graphic card. Has anyone ever done that? I have an Intel 11.

Do you have a laptop or desktop PC?

The graphic docks cost the same as a decent laptop, and you still have to add in a good graphics card. I wonder what the use case is where it is worthwhile. SketchUp is also quite dependent on your CPU and adding an ultracool whizbang graphics card doesn’t make your single thread CPU performance any better.

Lots of laptops don’t actually support them very well - you tend to need a very specific type of connection to the motherboard to get the most from it.

Is it to to try and help with SketchUp or for rendering?

I have a laptop. I know the ideal cenario would be to have a desktop pc, but I don’t want to waste this laptop which is a good one and it’s doing the trick. My only goal is to accelerate the rendering process. The rest is fine. And it’s not like it’s taking long hours to render a room, but I am now learning the light thing, and I am using interactive rendering to edit those light parameters, and it’s kinda slow.

I see… And also I have never met anyone who’s ever used an external graphic card for a laptop. I would love to know a direct opinion from those people … lol
I think gamers tend to use this strategy.

What are you using to render?

V-Ray. Actually, I just remembered… When I used the “bump” thing once for the floor it took several hours to render. So yes, maybe I do need a desktop pc with an Nvidia card.
But it would be awesome to just upgrade my precious laptop.

There are a couple of other options that might help -

1: Using V-Ray cloud rendering - you buy credits and then press to a button to have Chaos do the final render for you.

  1. Using Swarm Rendering - for this you have another computer somewhere on your network (some people buy an old laptop) and basically V-ray can split the rendering between the laptop you are on and the old computer.

I messed around with external GPU many years back trying to get more performance out of an older Dell laptop. I had a Mantiz Saturn Pro external enclosure with an nVidia Geforce GTX 1070Ti graphics card. Did it work? Yes, but I didn’t get the performance increase I expected for the amount of money and time spent and frustration trying to get it to work. Mind you, this was 5-6 years ago, so the hardware and technology wasn’t as evolved. I found out that I was losing bandwidth (performance) with the Thunderbolt 2 cable. It was a bit better using an external monitor and worse using the laptop display but overall marginally better than using the integrated graphics of the laptop. I wound up dismantling the eGPU and using the graphics card in my son’s PC.
I suggest doing more research – here’s a really good website: https://egpu.io with lots of information on external GPUs. Here’s an interesting blurb from that site:

That’s great. Lots to read. Thank you for the suggestion of the website! Now I am a bit more confused then I was before, but that’s the whole point of learning, right?!

I will check these options. Thanks for the help! :hugs:

There are a couple of other things worth checking on your current laptop too to ensure it’s working as fast as it can

  1. You are connected to power (Laptops will always run slower on battery)
  2. Check your laptop is on “best performance” mode when you are rendering

In Windows go to Start > Settings > System > Power & battery

Make sure the power mode is on “best performance”

It might be hotter and noisier than it normally is in this mode.

I might try to do the 2 laptops thing, I have an ASUS here doing nothing…
I changed the performance of my laptop and it’s always connected to power :alien:
Now I’ll go on and have fun while it’s rendering. V-ray interface changed to a 95 decade old style graysh and bizarre now. All of the sudden! Is it because I changed the performance of the system?

What are your V-Ray settings? It may be that you need to reduce the quality and size down a bit to match the performance / hardware of your laptop. Make sure that ‘Progressive’ is turned off in the Render Settings. I also recommend using Medium quality (at best). You may also want to try V-Rays Performance Benchmark test - V-Ray Benchmark – test your CPU/GPU rendering power | Chaos to see where you compare.

Thanks! Quality is medium and progressive is turned off. It’s rendering at an OK speed for a simple room.

As @ch3ck5ix writes, the performance may not be what you expect. And to start with, does your laptop have the required connections? I have a recent nice Asus ultrabook, and it doesn’t even have a Thunderbolt connection.

Now, what does this mean? Okay, I am checking performances and mine sucks. Lesson learned!

I’ll have to check on that! Thx!