Figured some of you might appreciate the nerdgasm in this and/or have heard me whinging about this ingame a few weeks back. So I'm captain FIFO and I dropped a load of cash on MA IA, but after playing it on my desktop at home on R&R I realise I spend so long away I need a way to play it at work too. So I grabbed my trusty 5 year old laptop I acquired from my last job, and bring it with me. She's a bit of a beast so I figured she could handle the jandle. i5 CPU, 16GB RAM, SSD, 17" screen etc. Running an integrated Intel graphics. Shouldn't be too bad right? Well yeah it is actually, fucking terrible. I can roll the lowest graphic settings / 320x200 at screen percentage 50% and still not top 5fps. So I use my white privilege and borrow the latest and greatest laptop I can find from work, and faff with the settings and manage to get in the high teen's FPS. That was good enough to get me through the rest of the swing with my MA fix and getting shot in the face by WW but I needed a better solution. Cue a load of googling and I come across some websites showing how to build a DIY eGPU (e is for external!). I won't bore you too much with it, there is heaps on the googles. Most of it is from a few years ago and doom and gloom about hacking laptops with incompatible BIOS and frying graphics cards and all that. Things change, time moves on. I bought an express port - PCI-E adapter for $80. I grabbed my old GPU out of my PC (Geforce GTX560) and an old PC Power supply. I plug it all in. I get literally none of the driver issues, bios issues, power issues etc. By some magical coincidence I just happen to have the right combination of hardware and software that it literally works out of the fucking box. So here's the deal, the Nvidia GPU does that calculation, and displays it on the internal LCD screen via the Intel graphics card. I'm bottled necked by the express port, but I now get just under 50fps in game, all the time. If I connect the eGPU to an external monitor I get the ~120fps game cap. Nvidia made a driver set designed to hand off displaying the frames to the intel gpu so that manufactures can put 2 gpus into laptops, one for desktop (low power consumption) and one for gaming (high performance). With the latest drivers, my laptop thinks its one of them. It all just ... works. So for $80 I now have a laptop that would challenge most current gaming laptops. Its not the cleanest solution, but it certainly is the cheapest.
I hope you enjoyed my essay. Attached is a pic of where I play the Trobez for a month at a time. It reminds me I have to turn the graphics back to pretty and see where the fps wall is
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