You may have seen different Thunderbolt enclosures. Some use the term “external graphics eGPU”, other use “PCIe expansion”. Did you know there is a difference in both hardware and software comparing these devices? In this article we will examine the pros and cons of eGPU’s and PCIe expansions. Lastly, we will examine how our product, BlackBeast Pro, the first product to combine the features of an eGPU and PCIe expansion.
Firstly, Thunderbolt enables your computer ability to dramatically expand functionality with a simple plug-and-play connection. You can connect to a large number of accessories with high-speed ports, blazing fast NVMe SSD, you can daisy chain other Thunderbolt devices, and utilize a desktop class graphics card directly on your computer.
PCie expansion devices are for more general use. You can install PCIe cards such as storage, network and audio cards. They typically also come with high-speed ports and daisy chain which let you daisy chain other Thunderbolt products. Still, they are not designed and certified to use graphic cards.
The PCIe enclosures are normally fitted with lower capacity power supplies, and on some designs, the PCIe bridges introduce additional latencies that may affect GPU performance. The second Thunderbolt port also drains too much bandwidth to get a satisfactory result. Lastly, the software is working differently on the PCIe expansion slot than on an eGPU.
External Graphic cards (eGPU) are dedicated to graphic applications and are specifically designed for use with high-performance graphics cards. The power supply is of higher capacity, at least 80+ gold standard to support the peak current demands of these high-performance graphics cards. To ensure a consistent performance and user experience for graphics applications, they don’t have high-speed ports, NVMe SSD support and nor are they capable of daisy chaining.
Our product, BlackBeast Pro is the first Thunderbolt product to combine the performance of an eGPU and the versatility of a PCIe expansion device, certified by Apple and Intel. With its dual cable design, BlackBeast Pro is equipped with high-speed ports, daisy chain, NVMe SSD and a desktop class graphics card without sacrificing bandwidth.
In short: BlackBeast Pro provides you with a single unit that turns your laptop into a powerful desktop workstation, while giving you full flexibility to install YOUR choice of graphic card and YOUR choice of NVMe SSD.