Thunderbolt 3 graphics card docks
Thunderbolt 3 graphics card docks


My desire to power up a laptop with an outside graphics card started in 2015 when I set out on a quest to come back into COMPUTER pc gaming– a precious pastime I ‘d neglected because of childhood years.

But the only PC I contended the moment was a 2011 Lenovo ThinkPad X220 laptop computer with Intel HD 3000 incorporated graphics. That just wouldn’t cut it for proper PC gaming. Sure, the laptop computer by itself jobs all right for older titles like Diablo III, particularly on the laptop’s small 1366×728-resolution screen, but ignore more graphics-intensive modern video games on an exterior 1080p display. That’s why I chose to examine exterior graphics card (eGPU) setups.

And also certainly, I located whole areas of individuals producing DIY configurations that connected desktop graphics cards to their laptops using ExpressCard or mPCIe slots to play games on an exterior display. It isn’t hard to configure, as well as using desktop computer graphics cards with a laptop computer has actually become even easier in recent times. The large schedule of Thunderbolt 3 integrated with exterior graphics card docks has actually streamlined the process much more for individuals with a modern-day notebook.

[Further reading: Our picks for finest COMPUTER laptop computers]
Numerous do-it-yourself types using Thunderbolt 3, ExpressCard, or mPCIe end up with a plug-and-play experience requiring little to no modification– though it takes some study first. When it’s done, nonetheless, you’ll be entrusted a console-toppling PC gaming arrangement for concerning the same cost as a brand-new Xbox One S, relying on which graphics card you choose. That’s much more affordable than developing an entirely new gaming desktop, and you can still make the most of your laptop computer’s mobility by detaching the eGPU hardware.

We’ll stroll you through the DIY process for configuring an outside graphics card later in this write-up, in addition to the sudden rise of streaming COMPUTER games from the cloud. Initially, allow’s tackle the modern-day strategy of using a graphics card dock via Thunderbolt 3.

Thunderbolt 3 graphics card anchors

A Razer Core attached to a Razer Blade Stealth laptop via Thunderbolt 3/USB-C.

Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) is Intel’s high-speed outside input/output connection, with the ability of speeds up to a blistering 40 gigabytes per 2nd (GBps) over a compatible USB-C port. For resource-intensive tasks like pc gaming, a quick connection in between your laptop computer and an outside graphics card provides a huge boost for performance.

Earlier efforts at outside graphics card anchors existed, but they were generally overpriced and relied upon exclusive connection technologies. Thunderbolt 3 degrees the playing field, and a number of companies currently offer TB3-based graphics card anchors, total with devoted power products, extra ports, as well as– of course– area to slot desktop computer graphics cards.

All is not best worldwide of Thunderbolt 3-powered graphics, nonetheless. Rooms are, generally, still a pricey suggestion– far more so than the Do It Yourself method we’ll layout later on. You’ll additionally need a fairly new notebook outfitted with a Thunderbolt 3-compatible USB-C port. These days most Thunderbolt 3 laptops and also graphics card rooms play well with each other thanks to Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 exterior graphics compatibility technology, which PC makers should specifically make it possible for.

If you remain in the marketplace for a new laptop-compatible with an outside graphics card dock, some great choices at this writing include the HP Shade x360 and the Lenovo Yoga 730. Still, Nando, an eGPU specialist that is a manager at, suggests researching your preferred laptop computer model for compatibility with graphics card units prior to purchasing just to make sure.

As soon as you have actually got your laptop computer sorted out it’s time to make a decision which graphics card dock to purchase. We can not cover all feasible units right here, as basically every major PC graphics card supplier is rolling out a graphics dock of its own, however, we’ll look at a few of the significant products available.


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