diy egpu

DIY eGPU: How to build an external GPU for 8K video editing, gaming, and VR

DIY eGPU means you’ll learn how to build an external graphics card for your laptop which can be used for gaming on the best settings, editing 4K or 8K footage and handles VR easily.

With a very customizable eGPU enclosure like the ADT-Link R43SG-TB3, you can build yourself the best external GPU or eGPU best suited to your needs whether it’s for gaming, machine learning, animation, 3D rendering, VR/AR and so on.

External GPU is a great way to enjoy a superior visual experience easily. But buying a top-quality external GPU might cost higher.

Also, purchasing an eGPU is not that much easy. You have to keep many different things in your mind before spending your money on an eGPU.

But what if I tell you that you can prepare your own external GPU as per your need. The best thing is that the DIY eGPU will cost you a lot less in contrast to the eGPU that you will buy from the market.

egpu diy

If you don’t have any experience in dealing with hardware, then you might think about how you can build an eGPU.

Whether you are new or professional, making an eGPU is not going to be a difficult task for you. You only have to follow the steps given here to get a budget-friendly DIY eGPU.

1. Back up everything

The first thing that you should do in the DIY eGPU process is to take the backup of your files. Not only building an external GPU, if you are doing anything new to your system, you should first prepare the backup of your data so that you don’t regret after losing it.

Back up will help you to perform the task without any worry. The DIY External GPU process is not going to harm your files, but you should be careful.

2. Compatibility

Don’t go to the market and start buying random stuff for your external GPU. The process of making a eGPU is simple, but you should do your homework so that you can get the best outcome.

Check the compatibility of the device on which you are going to run the eGPU. If you want to run all the latest high-end games and video editing software, then ensure that you also have the latest device with good features.

Also, check whether your device has HDMI, USD Thunderbolt connect, which you may need to connect the DIY eGPU with the system.

Further, go through the power restrictions of your device. You can note all these details because you are going to need them while buying stuff for your external GPU.

Without checking the compatibility, you might end up building a worthless eGPU for your device. So have a closer look at the compatibility before taking any further action.

3. Boot Camp

If you are a Mac user, then you might be familiar with the Boot Camp. It is a utility that comes with all the Mac devices. It will help you to use macOS as well as the Windows operating system at the same time on a single device.

Not all the software and games that you want to play are compatible with both macOS and Windows. Most of the software and games are compatible with a single operating system.

But Boot Camp will help you in enjoying all the software on a single device by letting you shift from one operating system to another. If you do not know how to install a window on a Mac device, then you can take support from the Boot Camp Assistant.

It will make the window installation process a lot easier and simpler for you, even if you are a beginner. Keep it in mind that you are installing the latest version of an operating system to get better performance.

Other than Mac devices, most other systems do not provide a built-in Boot Camp. But you can find many software that can play the role of Boot Camp in those systems.

4. Buy Hardware

The main process of DIY eGPU is buying hardware. You need to purchase some suitable and compatible hardware that will give you outstanding results.

First, you have to spend on a graphic processing unit. If you are going to prepare an eGPU for video editing or normal gaming tasks, then I would suggest you choose an RTX 2060 or 2070 GPU.

These devices will deliver you a smooth video editing experience. However, if you want to perform some 4k video tasks as well as high-end gaming, then the RTX 2080 will be a good option.

However, the RTX 2080 Ti is expensive but will give you the best outcome. You might also require a PCIe extender cable for some of the graphic cards. So make sure to check the PCIe before investing on the card.

If you want to keep your external graphic card in a closed container, then you should go for a suitable case. Before buying the case, you should check if it is compatible with your GPU or not.

You must also look at whether the case supports Thunderbolt 2 or Thunderbolt 3. The eGPU enclosure will accommodate you in connecting the card with the device. Also, it will prevent the card from all sorts of external damages.

Read my guide on the best eGPU enclosures to buy in 2020.

You will further need a power supply unit. Before selecting a power supply unit, you have to look at the card that you are using.

If you are using a low-end card, then it will demand less power, while for a high-end card, you need to invest in a superior performing power unit.

Buy a PSU with above 500 watt power. This will enable you use high end graphics card like the latest AMD and Nvidia GPUs.

Buy a PCIe Powered Flexible Riser

At last, you might also need to own a PCIe 16x to 16x Powered Flexible Riser. It is a cheap peripheral that will not disturb your budget. However, some of the cards will not demand this equipment.

5. Assemble

how to build an external GPU

As you have bought and received all the required hardware and peripherals, now you need to assemble them. You will also get a manual with most of the peripheral devices. You can connect the peripherals using the manual.

This assembly stage is quite easy. You’ll mostly need to do some plugging and light manual work.

6. Install Required Drivers

The last step in the DIY eGPU process is driver installation. You have to download the required graphics drivers before operating the eGPU. However, you can locate the drivers from the manufacturer’s website.

This step is very easy, just head over to AMD’s or Nvidia’s website, select your GPU model and download the drivers. These drivers are needed for your GPU to perform at max performance.

Also, make sure you download the latest drivers and update the drivers whenever there’s an update.

7. Launch your new external GPU (eGPU)

Once you are done with the driver installation process, you can start using the DIY eGPU and get top-quality performance. You will surely mark a notable change in your system performance after connecting the eGPU.

Bottom Line

Engaging in the manual DIY eGPU process is worth it in the end because you get the exact power and performance you want and can afford.

But, before doing something as technical as this please do your due diligence. Do a lot of research around your laptop. If it’s compatible and able to use an external GPU because most laptops can’t because they don’t have Thunderbolt 3 ports.

After checking if your laptop can work with external GPUs, check if it can work with the GPU you want to buy, an example can be check if your Dell Insipiron Laptop can work with an RTX 2080 Ti card as an external GPU.

Then finally, check if all your components (GPU+PSU+Enclosure) are compatible with eachother so you don’t waste money and time buying the wrong components.


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