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HP 8300 Elite USDT w/ Internal Desktop GPU

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trs96

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  2. Mac mini
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This project is still in developmental stages.
20200314_105454.jpg


20200314_111100.jpg

Why attempt to install a desktop graphics card in an ITX size mini PC ?

Answer:
The HP 8300 USDT models can only use Ivy Bridge CPUs and HD4000 integrated graphics at best. This means no 4K video output is possible. The best resolution available would be 1440p. The goal of this project is to enable the streaming of 4K content with this HTPC. This will also be useful to those with unsupported HD2500 graphics.

How is this even possible ? Isn't this machine only a little bigger than a Mac mini ?

Answer:
With very minimal changes to the case it should be possible to install a GT 710 with HDMI 2.0 output. The plan is to use a passively cooled 710 that can connect via PCIe x1. See it at Amazon: Zotac GT 710 1GB

Here is the available Mini PCIe x1 slot on the HP motherboard:

8300_USDT.png


Front 4 USB ports of the 8300

The HP 8300 USDT does have an MXM slot which holds a few models of HP branded graphics cards. None of them are macOS Catalina compatible. The supported Nvidia MXM cards from iMac models do not work with this motherboard and BIOS. HP does let you install the AMD 7650A card but it's a poor performer and is not supported by macOS.



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Screen Shot 3.jpg

AMD 7650a MXM graphics card (laptop class) A GTX 650 performs two times better than this MXM card.


Part Upgrades

Here is the required Mini PCI-e to PCI-e x1 adapter/riser card.
Screen_Shot_23_copy_6.png

You can upgrade to Noctua 60mm fans (PWM) in these HP USDTs. The stock fans are usually noisy. Both the front and back fans are 60mm so you can replace both if you'd like.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VXTANZ4/?tag=tonymacx86com-20

If you need to replace both fans and don't need PWM speed control, these Noiseblocker fans from Germany are a good value. Two 60mm fans for $22. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WVTEEWS/?tag=tonymacx86com-20

Any standard 2.5" Sata SSD will fit in these too. A 240 GB size is the most economical. I like PNY brand.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0719D9YL7/?tag=tonymacx86com-20
 
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trs96

Moderator
Joined
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Messages
20,311
Motherboard
GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
CPU
i5-4690K
Graphics
HD4600 / RX 570
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
  2. Mac mini
Mobile Phone
  1. Android
Update 4/19/20

Just received the Mini PCIe to PCIe x1 riser cable. Connected it up to my Zotac GT 710 and tried to boot into the BIOS. The Mini PCIe end fits into the slot fine. The x1 end seems ok also. Not getting any BIOS screen or boot screen via the HDMI port of the Zotac card. Here's how the Mini PCIe end looks installed beneath the SSD cage. No screws needed.

20200419_091350.jpg


I'm looking for some way to disable the integrated Intel graphics but it's not allowed in the BIOS Even once I connect the GT 710 card. It's likely an option once a graphics card is installed in the MXM slot.

20200419_092229.jpg


The ribbon cable is long enough to exit out the back of the metal case. Would only require cutting one small piece of metal in the following location. Inside the red colored rectangle. If I'm unable to get the GT 710 to work, I can always connect a Wifi BT card via a PCIe x1 adapter. That would give the very best Wifi and BT connections possible. Much better than a 1/2 mini PCIe Wifi card. Those then require antenna cables to run to the exterior of the case. The thick steel case blocks the RF signals from reaching the inside.

Screen_Shot_5.png


The simplest way, that doesn't require a dremel tool, snip the following two thin pieces of metal and run the PCIe x1 cable through the opening. After removing the fan of course.

Screen_Shot_5.png
 
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trs96

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Connected up the PCIe Wifi card (Broadcom BCM94360CD) and it works normally. It appears that some boards do have the 9 pin media header and some don't. You can connect the USB 2.0 cable to that header (5) for BT.

Screen Shot 9.jpg


Posterior view of the Wifi card adapter.
20200419_103203.jpg


So the biggest obstacle to using the GT 710 4K graphics card is not being able to switch to dedicated graphics via the BIOS. It just doesn't even see the Zotac graphics card at all. Maybe it would take a BIOS mod or something ? No idea how to proceed from here.
 
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For the graphics card did you provide power to the riser? Not sure if the minipcie slot provides enough power to the card even if it is 1x. If you can use an linux live boot usb and type lspci to see if it even detects the card on that slot too. I'm curious myself but for another reason
 

trs96

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  1. MacBook Pro
  2. Mac mini
Mobile Phone
  1. Android
Not sure if the minipcie slot provides enough power to the card even if it is 1x.
From what I researched it said up to 10W from the slot. The 710 says slightly more than that as a max power draw. It could be a problem I suppose. It may also be that if there is nothing in the MXM slot it locks down the igfx and you can't disable it to use a discrete card. Then it will not switch to the gfx card in the MiniPCIe slot.
 
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From my experience with mining and using riser cards it always helps to add separate power if you can. There's that power connector on the board that's usually for the DVD drive that would work to test that theory. W

hile you might not be able to boot from it per say maybe you can get the mac to use it as it's output once it switches to clover? To see if it even detects the PCI card run an ubuntu live usb and in the terminal type lspci to see if it even shows up at all.
 

trs96

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  2. Mac mini
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To see if it even detects the PCI card run an ubuntu live usb and in the terminal type lspci to see if it even shows up at all.
Nothing related to the Nvidia graphics card.

Screenshot from 2020-04-23 17-15-56.png


20200423_120838.jpg
 
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trs96

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That's not promising at all, is that with or without the power supplied to the riser?
Only the power from the mini PCIe slot. There was no 4 pin connector included to power the riser.
 
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And you'd essentially need a 4 pin female to female connector. Hard to come by unless you roll your own frankenwire from two floppy power cables if you have any power supplies laying round. I do think it needs that extra boost of power though.

Only the power from the mini PCIe slot. There was no 4 pin connector included to power the riser.
 
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