Undoubtedly, you’ve heard about external HDDs and SSDs, but did you know that external graphics cards also exist?
External graphics cards are one thing, and there are several reasons why you might want to get one, but which is the best reason?
They make playing on a laptop more comfortable than ever!
In essence, an external GPU is a standalone device that contains a power supply and a desktop version of a graphics card that is connected to a laptop or PC through a Thunderbolt port.
Now, if you want to play games on your laptop or do not have space on your motherboard to install a powerful GPU, we will give you a list of the best external graphics cards of today.s
The best external graphics cards 2019
It may interest you::
Unless you are entirely new to the world of computer hardware, then you know about Gigabyte. It was founded in 1986 and is one of the leading hardware manufacturers today. Besides, they are authorized manufacturers of Nvidia and AMD graphics cards, and these are often some of the best graphics cards you can find in the market.
The AORUS Gaming Box is an external GPU case that comes complete with the Mini ITX version of the GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card from Gigabyte. However, due to its tiny size and compact refrigerator, its overclocking potential is more limited and gets a little high when under load. However, he is still fully capable of taking on 4K and VR games.
As for the design, there is not much to say: the exterior is clean and minimalist, while the RGB lighting on the front that illuminates the front of the graphics card gives it that particular style of play.
When it comes to connectivity, there is no lack of variety here. It has a single Thunderbolt 3.0 port that is used to interact with a laptop or PC, while the GPU comes with an HDMI 2.0 port, a DisplayPort 1.4 and two Dual Link DVI-D ports. In addition to these basic concepts, Gigabyte takes the case one step further and gives it four USB ports, three of which are standard USB 3.0 ports, and the fourth is a fast charging port
Although Alienware started in 1996 as an independent company, it only reached its glory days after Dell acquired it in 2006. For the most part, the name Alienware had become synonymous with laptops for games (expensive), for what is natural. See some external graphics solutions for them.
The Alienware graphics amplifier is a GPU case designed for work mainly with Alienware laptops, using the company’s proprietary port instead of the usual Thunderbolt 3 port as a means of connection.
With an elegant black plastic exterior with a very detailed front and a striking Alienware logo, the Alienware graphics amplifier looks like an Alienware product.
The case does not come with a graphics card, but according to Alienware, it is compatible with all full-size graphics cards that date back to the GTX 600 and Radeon HD 5000 series. Besides, the 460-watt power supply can handle cards with a TDP of up to 375W.
As mentioned above, the Alienware graphics amplifier comes with a proprietary Alienware port instead of a Thunderbolt 3 port, which limits its compatibility to the following laptops, as indicated on the official product page i. Alienware: 13 R1, ii. R2 and R3, iii.Alienware 15 R1, iv. R2 and R3, v.Alienware 17 R2, vi. R3 and R4, vii.Alienware X51 R3, viii. Alienware Alpha R2
Besides, it has four USB 3.0 super speed ports that allow the convenient connection and charging of certain peripherals.
This Alienware external GPU is an excellent choice for owners of Alienware laptops who want to give an extra performance at home.
3. Akitio Node
Akitio is a name that many are probably not familiar with. It is an international company based in California that deals mainly with storage solutions and external expansions.
The Akitio Node is a case of a spacious and adaptable external GPU, although, it seems, it is more reminiscent of a complete Mini ITX computer case, more than any other product on this list.
With its 400-watt power supply and large interior, it can support any graphics card, in terms of size.
As for GPU compatibility, it supports Nvidia and Radeon GPUs, including the GTX 900 series models and later, as well as several Radeon R9 and RX cards. Besides, it also supports several Nvidia Quadro GPUs. You can see the complete list of supported graphics card models here.
It comes with a single Thunderbolt 3 port, which is a bit disappointing considering its size and price.
The size of Akitio Node merely is massive. Its weight is considerable 15.2 pounds (approximately 7 kg), and that is without counting the graphics card that will eventually go inside it. It can hold any GPU, but it is also the least portable case in this list. Apart from that, it is expensive, but if you need an external GPU to use in your home, then the Node would be a good option.
Asus is a company that almost needs no introduction. This Taiwanese giant has expanded to nearly every part of the hardware industry over the years, during which time the Republic of Gamers brand was created.
One of the products of the RoG line is the RoG XG Station 2, which takes the aggressive and eye-catching design that is a staple of RoG products and applies it correctly to an external GPU case. The Station 2 has a profoundly bold design: angular, full of details and, of course, equipped with RGB lighting in the form of a ‘plasma tube’ visible on the front of the box. And despite what you may think when you look at the price tag, the standard station two does not come with a GPU included.
Considering its size, it is compatible with full-size graphics cards and is consistent with the GTX 900 series cards, the Radeon R9 series cards and the newer generations. Besides, it even has several internal fans that help with cooling.
Naturally, it comes with a standard Thunderbolt 3 port, but also includes four USB 3.0 ports, a USB Type B port, and an Ethernet port.
5. Razer Core X
Razer is a company known for its extensive and costly gaming products.
It may not stick the Core X for a Razer product at first glance, since its exterior design is quite clean, without RGB. Its spacious interior can accommodate even triple-width graphics cards, which is great if you have your eyes on a larger model. Also, with a 650-watt power supply, you can be sure that even the most power-hungry card will not give you any trouble.
The Razer Core X is compatible with the Razer Blade, Razer Blade Stealth and Razer Blade Pro notebooks, although it is compatible with any Thunderbolt 3 equipped notebook that supports external graphics cards.
When it comes to connectivity, the Razer Core X keeps things simple, like the Akitio Node: it only has one Thunderbolt 3 port, and there are no additional ports to talk about, unfortunately.
In general, the Razer Core X is a very viable external graphics card hosting, mainly because it supports a wide range of GPUs and is not much more expensive than most other products of this type.
Unfortunately, it does not have a USB hub, but if all you need is a case to hold a full-size graphics card that you do not intend to move from your desk, then the Razer Core X would be a good buy.
It may interest you::
Do you play on a Laptop or Desktop?
It’s true that external GPUs are a response to the need for better graphics processing on laptops, but there are valid reasons to explain why you might try using one, even if you own a desktop PC.
More commonly, those reasons are the lack of space and the incompatibility of the motherboard. If you have a more compact Micro ATX or Mini ITX case, some graphics cards may not fit inside. On top of that, your motherboard may not have enough space or may lack a functional PCIe port. Maybe even your power supply is insufficient to support a new GPU.
But any of the above scenarios would be quite rare nowadays, and it could be said that it is better to save some money and put together a suitable gaming platform, since external GPUs are quite expensive, not to mention that Thunderbolt 3 is just not that fast as a PCIe connection, so there is always a performance gap between the external and internal GPUs.
However, an external graphics card could be quite attractive if you have a desktop computer and a laptop on which you want to play since you could switch between the two easily, without seeing any significant loss in performance, as long as both have specifications decent CPU and memory.
On top of that, an external GPU is almost an obligation if you intend to play on a Mac since the GPUs found on Macs are often not suitable for dancing, be it a MacBook, an iMac or a Mac mini. we are talking about
Do you prefer power or portability?
No GPU can achieve the maximum possible performance potential while maintaining a low weight and a modest size.
But, luckily, it is quite easy to determine which priority should be given priority by merely considering whether you will only use the GPU at home or if you intend to take it with you frequently.
If you plan to play mainly in the comfort of your home, then portability is not that important. Any of the external GPU cases listed here can be moved quite quickly within the confines of your own home.
However, if you move a lot and need an external GPU that you can easily carry wherever you go, then a lighter and more compact solution would be appropriate. Unfortunately, most manufacturers want their boxes to be compatible with full-size graphics cards, so the Gigabyte Aorus Gaming Box is the best option if you are looking for a more portable solution.
It may interest you::
What is the best external GPU?
While its limited flexibility when it comes to possible future updates may be a deciding factor for some people, the Gigabyte Aorus Gaming Box does everything else correctly.
The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 that comes with this case is a graphics card prepared for 4K and VR that will not go out of style soon. Also, few laptops these days go beyond a Full HD 1080p screen resolution, and this particular GPU will be more than enough for 1080p games unless you also plan to use an external screen.
More importantly, when we think of laptops, we think of mobility. Unlike the other external GPUs currently on the market, the Aorus Gaming Box can perfectly preserve that mobility. No other case can approach in this respect since it is significantly lighter and smaller than the competing models.