An eGPU, aka an external graphics processing unit, allows you to power and connect the graphics card of your heart's desire/dreams/budget to your laptop with thunderbolt 3 connections.
Despite customers demanding ever smaller/lighter laptops, laptops really have levelled up to desktops in many areas, with fast and light SSD’s and new super-efficient processors that are now available, but the one component that just can’t compete with a desktop is the graphics card.
If you use a laptop for anything more than sending emails and watching cat/dog/monkey videos, you will have undoubtedly come across the trade-offs that you are making having a laptop that is thin or light or (if you are lucky) both.
Discrete or dedicated graphics cards are big and power-hungry and they need a bit of room to dissipate the heat that all that power generates. That’s fine if you have a dedicated desktop for your graphics intense activities, gaming, CAD, design work, video rendering, but if not, until recently you were basically stuck. The introduction of Thunderbolt3 and USB-C technology has increased the speed at which a computer can communicate with the outside world hugely (40Gbps, if you’re interested) nearly 1000 times faster than USB 2.0, this means a GPU can realistically be housed outside the computer it's working on.
Generally, the eGPU is the housing, power supply and communication hub required to connect your computer to the aforementioned graphics card of your dreams/budget. The graphics card is supplied separately.
Here are some examples from our Sonnet and Akito from our website.
However, there are eGPU such as the Sonnet eGPU Breakaway Puck RX 5500 XT** below which has a graphics card built-in and is rather more portable than the desktop models.
Please click here to see the full range of eGPU products