Tell me everything about eGPUs

Hi there,


I have a pretty massive project running on my 2020 16" MacBook Pro. The project runs smoothly but it takes about 4 minutes to open. I am using the maximum allowed number of Ebosuite plugins. Looking at Activity Monitor I can see that my AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 8 GB - is completely maxed out just having the project open. CPU is under a load but not to a crazy extent. I’m outputting to 4k and using ableton/ebo for livestreaming setup AND also separately recording to Syphon.

Those of you who have used an eGPU - how effective are they?

What is your specific set up?
How many tracks have Ebosuite plugins on them?
What is your output resolution?
Do your sessions open quicker when using an eGPU?
What specific make and model GPU are you using and how many GB on the card?

I’m getting exactly the results I want from the software, it is just very sluggish to make changes and take 4 minutes to start up.

Hi Scott, I have no experience with eGPU’s but I know that multiple EboSuite users are using EboSuite and they seem happy with the results. In EboSuite 1.71 we made it easier to select which GPU EboSuite uses, so make sure to update to 1.71. I hope other users will give you some good advice. Interesting! Cheers

I ended up purchasing a Razor Core X and a Radeon RX 5700 XT and so far, the results are positive. Activity monitor shows that its using the eGPU and the fans on my Macbook are no longer going full bore all the time. The only issue is that its still using almost all the eGPUs bandwidth plus some of the internal 5500m AND sometimes the iris GPU.

If I’m recording in Ableton AND recording Syphon at the same time - the GPU and CPU are really working hard but they are working. Syphon audio wasn’t recording audio properly without the eGPU and now WITH it, its still not lining up but seems to be improving. I can expand on that if needed.

I hope this is helpful info for other folks who might be curious about the same thing. My next test (if I can ever afford it) is to see if I can make use of two eGPUs simultaneously. For this project I may have to, but we’ll see.


Hi there. I am not tech savvy enough to ask this question in the right way, but I’m going to give it a shot. I’m using EboSuite to trigger individual png files. About 150 of them. I’m also using the eSampler functionality to manipulate opacity and sustain with knobs on a MIDI controller. Its working well, but it is a bit sluggish. I’m currently using an 8GB external GPU.

There is actually no audio in my project at all and I’m wondering if I’ll see EboSuite working better if I move to a 16GB external graphics card. Does Ebosuite use the GPU in this way, or is it more about render speed? Do you think I would benefit from two 8GB graphics cards or one 16GB GPU or is it essentially not going to make a difference because Ebosuite doesn’t care as much about the amount of video ram? I hope this makes sense.

Hello @Scott,
nice to hear you had a good experience with the eGPU and EboSuite!

Currently, EboSuite uploads all the PNGs to the GPU memory when they are loaded. When they are on the GPU they are in uncompressed format that takes about 8.3mb of vram for a full hd picture(1920x1080x4 bytes). For a set of 170 pictures that would be about 1.5Gb which is not that much for any of your setups:)
If they are 4k, then we are closer to 5Gb which should still be fine even for a 8Gb gpu.

In general, larger amount of GPU memory is better for sets with a lot of clips, because EboSuite needs to cache a lot of frames in advance so they can be triggered swiftly.

About recording: Syphon Recorder needs to move resources from GPU to CPU, so it will always create a bottleneck. I’m not sure what is the difference between eGPU and internal GPU in this regard.

It would be really awesome if you could send us the set with 150 images to so we can have a look at what is going on.

Thanks for your feedback,


Hi! I’ll send my set BUT at the moment I have all the files on an external SSD. Could that be a bottle neck? Its a pretty fast SSD (Samsung EVO) but not NVME fast. I’ll copy them separately for the set.

As for Syphon Recorder, I know thats not your software, but do you have any tips for how to synch the audio properly? I’m having an issue where the sound records slightly faster than the video as if its in a different sample rate or something. I got it to work once but have since changed things around and can’t figure out what happened. The audio records but is all sped up at the beginning of the clip and doesn’t even kind of line up.I just realized I’ve been using iShowU Audio Capture - maybe I don’t need to?

I haven’t found a combination of inputs or outputs using “Audio MIDI Setup” to create an aggregate device. Also, I’m using the eSyphonOut plugin.

I have everything switched over to a Mac Mini with TWO eGPUs with AMD 5700xt’s and it seems like the video side of things is looking pretty good. It sounds like what you’re saying is the processing aspect of the GPU is more important than the memory size and it looks like two 5700s work just fine.

I did notice (if you need more info to help other folks with this stuff) that the second GPU did absolutely nothing for ebosuite OR syphon until I plugged my monitor into it - Previously I was trying the HDMI out from the mac mini and one GPU hdmi out was going to a capture card. Now that both eGPUs have an HDMI plugged in, I’m seeing them take the majority of the work from the built in Mac mini GPU

Hi @Scott,

Hard disk should not be a bottleneck if your set is only pictures - they are read from disk only when the set is being opened.

I’ll let my colleagues comment about the Syphon Recorder - I don’t have much experience with it.

GPU stuff:

What is more important is really up to the specifics of the set, but in general, for sets with a lot of sources(especially pictures), the VRAM(memory on the GPU) is extremely important.

Processing power is important only for video effects and complex ISFs.

EboSuite currently uses only one GPU, which is automatically selected on startup.
You can also select GPU manually if you are not happy with what was autodetected:)

MacOS is finicky about GPUs in general, and for the best performance I think that everything should go through one GPU, for example a setup like this:
eGPU-1 is selected in EboSuote
eGPU-1 has a screen attached
EboSuite window is on the screen attached to eGPU-1
there are no Syphon routings that go to the apps using other GPUs

If there are any other gpus/displays involved, than MacOS has to copy data between GPUs, and although this is incredibly fast nowadays, it could cause issues with cutting-edge sets:)

If there is a capture card involved, then the optimal routing would be: eGPU1->Capture Card->Screen

Hope this helps!