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Razer Core X External Graphics Card Enclosure with Thunderbolt 3 $336 + Delivery ($0 with Prime) @ Amazon UK via AU

860

Not the cheapest its ever been, but pretty close, and definitely a good deal, seeing how local stock goes for $550ish.

Price History at C CamelCamelCamel.

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closed Comments

  • +1 vote

    Does it actually work well ?

    • +26 votes

      I have this - theoratically great but lots of issues when running including drop outs and freezes
      Plenty on forums and I've given up

      •  

        Thank you. I will pass.

    • +3 votes

      I'm typing this from a Core X Chroma (the version with a USB hub and stupid RGB lights) connected to a 3070 and a Dell XPS 13 laptop.

      It works great. I use it all day for work from home (with a Xiaomi 34" ultrawide) and gaming in the evening when the toddler has gone to bed. I've no time to benchmark it, but I've never had a problem with frames per second yet.

      • +2 votes

        I've got a Dell Inspiron 14" 11th Gen Intel. Great CPU and RAM with low grpahics performance MX350 GPU. This laptop is super lightweight and super thin, not meant for gaming because of the graphics card how ever does have thunderbolt 4.
        Being so thin I wonder if using something like this would cause throttling due to overheating or is overheating less of an issue if the graphics card is external?
        XPS is similarly thin, do you find issues with this at all, can you give a brief rundown of what games you've been able to play and what settings? (Low, med, high etc.)

        • +2 votes

          The XPS (7390 4K - it's not 2-in-1) does not significantly heat up during gaming. Most games these days are GPU-intensive, not CPU-intensive. I think that's why. Given you've got thunderbolt and an 11th gen Intel CPU, I wouldn't be afraid to try this setup. My CPU is 10th gen Intel i7.

          My main game is Elite Dangerous and its new Odyssey expansion, which has known framerate issues. I can lock at 120fps in standard Elite Dangerous (to match 120hz refresh rate - could do 144hz and higher FPS, but have a dodgy displayport cable), but Odyssey only does 30-40fps, which is pretty good for Odyssey. I haven't had problems playing the expansion, apart from other bugs, while most people have had big problems even playing.

          I've also been playing Assassin's Creed Valhalla, which runs perfectly. Death Stranding also runs great and I want to find the time to progress in it. I've played bits of Total War Warhammer 2, Ghost Recon Wildlands and Breakpoint, Microsoft Flight Simulator, all with no problems.

          I've played part-way through Half-Life: Alyx on VR (using Steam on the PC connected via Virtual Desktop to Oculus Quest). That also ran smoothly and I didn't have any problems at all.

      • +2 votes

        do you have issues with the USB disconnecting and reconnecting on your mouse and keyboard?

        Do you unplug or plug yours in often / have issues disconnecting and reconnecting the egpu using the razor software?

        Do you get prompted for bitlocker keys when restarting your laptop in a different state than it was when it was turned off?

        • +2 votes
          1. Yes, but I found the solution. Start up the laptop, log in and let it settle, then switch on the Core X Chroma. Everything works just fine then.

          2. I have had in the past. See point 1 for the solution. If you end up in a situation where the issues don't seem to go away, switch everything off, walk away for a bit, then keep trying the solution in point 1. It seems to find its way back to normal and stay normal.

          3. Yes. I've learned to ignore that. Just go off/on with the power switch. The Bitlocker warning goes away. It's not real.

  • +1 vote

    Would buy if it was thunderbolt 4. Would have been perfect for 11gen laptops

    • +7 votes

      IIRC, Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 4 are the same speed. Thunderbolt 4 just has higher minimum requirements. So performance should be identical. Theoretically, anyway.

      •  

        Yes, performance will be better even on this model with TB4 laptop. The external enclosure doesn't have to be TB4, so if you have a TB4 laptop, this is a good solution.

      • +4 votes

        It turns out Thunderbolt 3 only has about 22Gbps PCIe bandwidth (instead of 32Gbps) from the testing I've seen and it's explained here. A Thunderbolt 4 laptop should perform better with this enclosure since the controller is integrated into the CPU with lower latency but a proper Thunderbolt 4 eGPU enclosure should perform even better from being able to use the full 32Gbps.

        As a deal, it's pretty alright… it's less janky looking than a R43SG TB3 setup which is the closest new option in price. It's about the right price vs used TB3 enclosures on OCAU.

        •  

          I have MacBook Pro 2019 and an old 980ti. Compared to desktop, 20% slower but much better than onboard.

          Have to replug every time after login and wait 30 seconds. I heard only a MacBook problem.

          Works perfect on a newer Lenovo ideapad. Unplug, replug. Spins up fans and connects within 5 seconds.

    • -1 vote

      For $336?

    • +1 vote

      Considering this is an external GPU and it will be doing the display output I don't there is any difference between thunderbolt 3/4 in this configuration. My understanding is that the key difference in 3 vs 4 is a standardisation in the support for multi displays from the port ie direct from your laptop. The bandwidth on the cable is the same 40Gbps - which is what you'll be pushing to your eternal GPU, and your GPU is directly connected to the displays so it can goto what ever it supports ie 1 / 2 / 3 monitors - right?

      •  

        "eternal GPU"

        Futurproofing is a thing but eternal? damn son…

  •  

    why don't get a complete desktop build as single GPU price is almost similar to pre-built system?

    • +1 vote

      I guess there are niche situations where this makes sense. For me - I'm tempted to grab one and drop a Quadro in it (I have a few sitting around) for 3D CAD work.

    • +12 votes

      i have an i9-9980hk laptop with 32gb ram already and buying another desktop with an equivalent CPU and ram just for gaming would cost 1000+ whereas this is less

    • +2 votes

      i have a laptop and travel a bit for work.. im sick of having multiple computers everywhere. I have my egpu and a ultrawide at home and plug it in when i want to play a game or something.. and then when im away i just take the laptop.

      When it works well it works very well.. however its a bit buggy sadly and i wish razer supported all thunderbolt devices on just blades etc. If they could fix the issues on it id recommend it to anyone.

  •  

    So you bought a laptop in the last 12 months thinking you'd never be able to afford a desktop GPU.

    •  

      Not about affording but finding a reasonably priced one.

  •  

    I need to run some graphic intense applications how would I set up this with my Dell XPS 13 Laptop form 2016 which does not have a graphics card.

    •  

      Plug and play aside from driver installation, i have one of these with an RTX 3070 plugged into an XPS13 9760

      •  

        So, You can plug in any graphics card in this thing? That RTX 3070 is really expensive!!!

        •  

          Yep as long as it's PCI/PCIE, and the wattage of the PSU can support the GPU.

    • +2 votes

      AS far as I know you need to have thunderbolt port on ur laptop, not every laptop has it, u should check ur laptop if it has or not?

      •  

        Yes, It has thunderbolt 3.

    •  

      Put graphics card in this, connect monitor to graphics card, plug TB port on laptop into box. Rejoice.

  •  

    $86.14 delivery fee?

    • +1 vote

      free prime delivery, i just checked

  • +7 votes

    For anyone new to eGPUs, egpu.io is a great place to learn all about them.

    •  

      +1 on this - MBPs have a work around to force boot into bootcamp with eGPU support.

      Was running an Mantiz eGPU prior - really helpful forums!

  • +4 votes

    on paper the tb4 is same speed as tb3, but from some tests on youtube you can see the frame loss for those tb3 GPU box running on a tb4 port perform much faster than on tb3 port. possible because tb4 the controller is actually in cpu, while tb3 is on external chip. so the frame loss on 1080 is only 10% compare to desktop, while on tb3 port it is around 30% loss.

    so it may worth it if you have an tb4 laptop. especially for the current market, when most parts price raise compare to 1 year ago.

    •  

      How does the price raise, incl. GPUs, makes buying this enclosure worth more?

      Also 30% frame loss sounds terrible. Is there a source for this information?

      • +1 vote

        It's 30% frame loss when running on the internal display from here.

        Not OP but I'm guessing it's because the enclosure is now much cheaper than a decent GPU to pair it with compared to it taking about half the total cost when these enclosures were introduced.

        • +1 vote

          I see, we're talking performance loss, not frames dropped.

          • -1 vote

            @pizzaguy: I think it was a case of moving one card down in performance.

            ie/ a GTX 1080Ti will perform more like a GTX 1080. Or a GTX 1080 will perform more like a GTX 1070.

            With that said, a dGPU in a Gaming Laptop is still going to be slower than a dGPU in a desktop due to thermals. ie/ GTX 1080 is going to be more like GTX 1070Ti. Or a GTX 1070Ti is going to be more like GTX 1070.

            And if we're talking about streaming, a la Google Stadia, it's actually worse than the above due to compression. It's more like getting GTX 1060 performance out of a GTX 1080 hardware.

  • +1 vote

    Damn would've been so keen at this price a year or two ago for my Intel Mac mini… going to be getting a new Mx Mac at some point in the near future though, and there's no current support for external GPUs on that architecture.

    •  

      Work well for Mac mini but guy above is right the m1 chips are better way to spend money.

  • +1 vote

    eGPU's that use m2 (pcie 4x 3.0) are significnatly faster than TB 3/4 and cost less than 1/4 that this does. Although an m2 breakout cable is not as convenient as a thunderbolt cable, many laptops and mini PC's these days have multiple m2 ports and they work on computers without thunderbolt (such as Ryzen 4/5xxx series laptops).

    Look into the R43SG.

    Here's a video about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrmHVL6zgGs

    •  

      thx for the information good to know, but on laptops it would require the user to remove the bottom plate and also it doesn't come in a nice box

      • +1 vote

        For me with a Ryzen 4800H in my new laptop, purchasing a bottom plate on aliexpress for $40 (so that I can cut out a slot for the m2 breakout cable from one of the 2 m2 slots yet still retain my warranty) and the eGPU for $50 is much, much cheaper and faster than purchasing a TB3 eGPU like this (which my laptop doesn't even have a TB3 port).

        For those who don't mind a bit of tinkering, I think the m2 approach is cheaper and better than Thunderbolt.

        •  

          Can you link to an example of the bottom plate you are talking about, or something similar?

    •  

      Remember PCMCIA cards?

      It would be neat if we could go back to something like that.

      •  

        Yes, I still have an Audigy 2 ZS soundcard that was actually really decent for it's time that was PCMCIA or maybe the newer express card format.

        Quite a few laptops around the end of Intel's Core2Duo and start of i3/5/7CPUs had an express card slot. There's actually an eGPU for those older machines. The EXP GDC Beast is capable of connecting to older laptops via expresscard or mini pci-e (what wifi cards use, different connector to m2 nvme).

    •  

      Well you can't get nintendo switch like experence without all in 1 convenient thunderbolt cable for video + charging but it's nice Ryzen has an alternative option to use egpu. Sadly it isnt idealy to keep on continuously disconnecting and reconnecting m2 breakout cable at bottom of laptop.

      •  

        I don't think many people who purchase 8 core Ryzen laptops are using their laptops like a Nintendo Switch, but I could be wrong :)

        Sure you can use a single cable, but then all your USB traffic is on the same cable as your eGPU data and that's not a good idea if trying to get the most performance over a Thunderbolt connection.

        Also if using a TB3/4 eGPU but using the laptops internal screen there is significant bandwidth loss due to needing bidirectional traffic (display signal being sent back to laptop LCD on the same cable that is sending the data from CPU to eGPU).

        TB3/4 with 40gbps eGPU is much better having the display signal sent to an external monitor. I believe it has around half the bandwidth of m2 pcie 4x 3.0 (which is around 80gbps I think).

  • +1 vote

    I had the Razor X Chroma - which is the same sort of setup with the addition of a USB hub and a slightly higher wattage PSU.

    My experience was it was a night and day difference with my XPS 15 9570.

    This is incredible value for a brand new unit. It was only a few months ago you'd have struggled to get a used one for this price.

    Sure you mightn't get the max performance of your GFX card through this, but it's a great solution for those that prefer using a laptop as your base setup. I.e. i only had a work laptop and so could then game using it.

    I now have a desktop for reasons… But it serves a purpose and for the price is a bargain.

    Yes you can go a direct m.2 eGPU, but there are other issues such as modifications. For many, the uplift in gaming performance or CAD operations would be well worth the investment.

    •  

      How well does it handle hotplugging on what I'm assuming a XPS 9570 with the 1050Ti? That's the one thing TB3 has going for it over an M.2 connection, and how I plan to use it everyday with my X1 Extreme if I pull the trigger

      •  

        It worked really well. Occasionally i had issues with a black screen cropping up. But yeh I had the 1050ti, and then a GTX980 in the eGPU. I had a lot of peripherals connected via the eGPU and overall it was almost flawless.

        Only thing I'd highlight is the TB3 only provides 100w of power and the XPS required 130w. So i was still using the laptop power supply as well. Otherwise it was great and would happily recommend the setup.

        •  

          I would've thought offloading the GPU work to the eGPU would make 100w more than sufficient, there you go.

  •  

    Should I buy this for the price? Or wait to buy the chroma core x with the extra ports?
    For Reference I have a Dell xps. 2 in 1 and would like to get a egpu with a 3070

    •  

      The price is decent, if not the best I've seen for a new Thunderbolt 3 enclosure, with only secondhand or a R43SG TB3 setup being cheaper but that skips the enclosure part.

      •  

        Yeah so you reckon its a cop? Or wait for the chroma x with the sub ports to go on sale? Do they even ever go on sale this is like my first time seeing this.

        •  

          In my opinion, get this or second hand chroma core x or core v2 if you dont plan on using buffy gpu. Fresh new Chroma core x rarely goes on sale iirc.

  •  

    Will this work with a macbook pro m1?

    • +2 votes

      I don't think the M1 work with eGPUS
      https://machow2.com/m1-mac-egpus/

    • +3 votes

      No, unfortunately not. M1 Macs don't currently support eGPU. Hopefully that changes when they release the new MacbookPros later this year.

      I had one running on my old Intel MBP and it was fantastic. Just make sure you buy an AMD gpu.

      But yeah, don't touch it if you have an M1 mac right now.

  • +1 vote

    Used a Core v2 combined with a RTX 2080 ti for a while with both a Hades Canyon Nuc and a Dell Inspiron 7577 Gaming Laptop (Core i7 version).

    Found the overall performance (1440p) to be comparable to my HTPC at the time (ryzen 1600 + RTX 2060).

    • +5 votes

      No GPU. $300 for the adapter, a PSU and the box. Seems like good value for money to me. Not sure if you could assemble one yourself for cheaper.

      • +1 vote

        I didn't think this one had USB ports on it.

        •  

          Correct, the chroma one does but this one doesn't

  •  

    I have a (very Noob) question, I have the NUC (NUC8i5BEH) with thunderbolt 3 support, if I disconnect this Razer Core X External Graphics Card Enclosure, how does the computer cope with being disconnected from it's graphics card, or does it seamlessly switch over to its internal graphics and operate as normal? The reason I ask is I had another computer with a built in discrete graphics card and as I gamed so rarely I decided to turn off the graphics card to stop the fan noise, electricity use, heating up the room etc, but the computer did not like it at all. Basically what I'm asking is can I just connect this to my NUC computer when I want to game then disconnect it when I've finished without having to deal with device manager and other stuff in Windows, thanks.

    •  

      Should be just like unplugging a usb device.

  • -1 vote

    I mean it's a great idea however it's it worth buying this plus a GPU where you can just use the $330 buying a cheap desktop and add a GPU?

    • -1 vote

      Obviously you are not the market. This would be good for someone who has a work laptop or student laptop. Keeping the laptop light and portable and having the power of a full gaming laotop/pc at home

      •  

        I understand the whole rationale however I'm thinking cost wise, I'm not convinced it's a practical as you think. I have the Alienware amplifier (so yes I know how it works); although it focuses on proprietary laptops, they're fiddly and buggy. I'm sure the Razer is no different. I would have both portable and standalone systems. There's always caveats & performance losses, issues with hybrid connections. Please read comments here with owners experiences.

  •  

    I have a core X Chroma…
    Works with my HP Envy Thunderbolt 3 laptop (Sold my desktop pc and bought this to use as a dock as that has USB and LAN ports on the eGPU)

    The plugging and unplugging can sometimes be clunky, and occasionally i have to put my bitlocker password in if i unplug or plug in at the wrong time and power it on… Windows must see the hardware change as above threshold.

    My USB ports disconnect and reconnect randomly when using KB and Mouse… so i dont even bother using them anymore

    Its great as an eGPU when its working, but its definitely not for someone that cant workaround its issues on the fly.

    Ive recently upgraded to a laptop with thunderbolt 4…but yet to plug it in as im locked down interstate!

  •  

    Would this come with a UK power plug? Just swap with an AU IEC?