We’re talking affordability, compatibility and portability
Aorus has revealed a new external graphics enclosure over at Computex, with the GTX 1070 Gaming Box aiming to deal with many of the shortcomings commonly associated with these solutions.
An external GPU box – which allows you to plug in a much more powerful desktop graphics card into your notebook – is generally speaking an expensive proposition, not to mention a hefty thing.
Typically, efforts such as the Razer Core or Alienware Graphics Amp come without a graphics card – you buy and fit your own, adding to the cost considerably. However, Aorus’ Gaming Box comes with a GeForce GTX 1070 card already built-in for just $599 (around £465, AU$810).
- Keep up with all the latest developments at Computex 2017
Compare that to the Razer Core which costs $499 (around £390, AU$675) plus the price of the (rather expensive) graphics card you’re going to put in there.
Or the Asus ROG XG Station 2 which currently commands a price tag of about £450 (around $580, AU$780) in the UK, again with no GPU. Dell’s Alienware Amp is admittedly far cheaper than these other rivals at $170 (around £130, AU$230), and that’s pretty much in line with Aorus’ price when you add the cost of the GTX 1070 – the problem here, though, is that this is a proprietary solution for Alienware machines only.
And that’s another strength of the Aorus Gaming Box: it can be hooked up to any laptop with a Thunderbolt 3 port. Aside from the Thunderbolt 3 connector, you also get an HDMI out, a pair of DVI ports, a full-size DisplayPort and four USB 3.0 ports.
Furthermore, as we mentioned, these external graphics enclosures can be pretty sizeable affairs, but the Aorus box has been made considerably smaller because it’s designed around a specific card. The exact dimensions aren’t available just yet, but we would say that the box is roughly half the size of the Razer Core.
So, this device is effectively attacking the competition on three fronts: affordability, compatibility and portability. In the latter case, being able to conceivably take the box with you easily enough, along with your laptop on your travels, could obviously be quite a boon.
The downside of the GTX 1070 Gaming Box is that you lose a little in the flexibility stakes. When purchasing, you don’t have a choice of GPU if you want something more powerful than the 1070, and if you wish to upgrade the card at a later date, the box won’t accommodate a full-size graphics card – you’ll need a Mini variant like this.
We’ve asked Aorus about the exact dimensions and PSU wattage of the Gaming Box, and will update this story when we hear back. We have been told, though, that the product should start shipping in the next few weeks.