So what happened to the eGPU display?

Bifurcated

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Hey Rene,

Last year one of the rumours that had me most excited was the possible Apple display with integrated eGPU. So of course Ming-Chi Kuo got it wrong that time, and it never surfaced.

What has me bewildered is that not only did Apple decline to release its own eGPU, it has made it really difficult for anyone else to do so. Even with all the heroic hackery that's gone on, we're nowhere near the plug and play functionality you get with, say, a Razer Core and Windows.

Do you have any insight into what's going on with Apple and eGPUs? Any idea why they backed off the rumoured eGPU display? Any idea why they are blocking off-the-shelf eGPUs from working properly? Any idea if there's something magical in the pipeline?

Thanks!
 

Rene Ritchie

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Apple may have prototyped one (they prototype everything any of us could think of that makes any sense at all) but it was never a product, far as I know.

No idea how that rumor got started.

I'm not sure why third-party eGPUs have been accommodated. Apple likes to write to the metal, and use Metal, and so they avoid things like NVIDIA which prefers to keep them out and insists on CUDA.

I've never spent much time looking into eGPUs, though, so no idea if there are similar reasons. If I hear anything, I'll let you know!
 

cuttheredwire

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I thought this would happen before the rumors started. The displays were being pulled from the store while using USB 3.0 for eGPUs was coming out. That would have paired well with low GPU MacBooks. Apple can make hardware work together beautifully, so this made sense.

Sadly, it boils down to wishful thinking and coincidence.
 

Rene Ritchie

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At this point, I'd guess getting the Apple Displays finished would have meant fewer resources for the iMac update and that was already taking until 2017. So...
 

Bifurcated

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My suspicion after the fact is that Apple was indeed working on this, but with the goal of being able to support 5k in retina mode, not so we could play mad games. They clearly figured out another way of doing this without the eGPU, and so the project was shelved.

I still hold out great hope that Apple will unblock eGPU use at some point. I really don't see any reason why they wouldn't want to let us plug in a Razer Core or whatever. NVIDIA's job ads for people on their Mac driver team hopefully points to something being in the works.
 

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