Why would you need a GPU expander for your new Macbook Pro, which already cost you thousands of dollars? Most people—even filmmakers—don’t.
However, there are certain situations where you need more graphics power, and a Thunderbolt expansion chassis with a strong graphics card can be a great addition to your system. If you work regularly with video and find yourself waiting on the progress bar more than you would like—either hours-long outputs of a feature in your NLE or days-long renders from programs like Da Vinci Resolve, After Effects, or Maya—adding more graphics horsepower can be a very cost-effective way to speed up the render. While it is expensive, it saves you hours of your life.
Why Thunderbolt 3? Aside from the obvious limitation that the new MBP doesn’t use Thunderbolt 2 and only offers Thunderbolt 3 connections, you could use a dongle to attach a Thunderbolt 2 expansion box if you wanted, but it wouldn’t take full advantage of the new standard. Thunderbolt 3 has a speed limit of 40gb/s, as opposed to the 20gb/s limit of Thunderbolt 2, and while most devices won’t use all the available bandwidth, graphics bandwidth is an area where it will likely be put to use.
What’s most surprising here is that not only is BizonBOX 3 the first Mac compatible GPU expansion box for the new MBP, but, so far, it appears to be the only one released. Thunderbolt 3 isn’t a surprise—hard drive manufacturers like Lacie came out with Thunderbolt 3-enabled storage devices almost immediately to support the new laptop. Especially considering the graphics limitations of the new computer (and the Razer Stealth gaming laptop already showing the power of the combination), it’s surprising that there hasn’t been more activity from competitors such as mLink, Magma, or Sonnet.
- Supports full-length, full-height and double-width cards
- Aluminum + SECC sheet metal case
- 1 x Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) port, 1 x internal PCIe (x16) slot with 4 lane PCI Express 3.0 interface
- 1-year limited warranty with 2-year extended option
- 4.4 Lbs / 2 Kg case
- 14.17 inches x 3.5 inches x 8.07 inches, 36 cm x 8 cm x 20.5 cm
- 200W power included, 400W power (for cards like the Titan) optional
- 6-pin + 8-pin PCI–E power connectors for graphics card, 8-pin + 8-pin with 400W supply