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Thunderbolt 3 builds - current status?

Joined
Sep 7, 2017
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Z270X Gaming 8
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Dear all,

I am new to this Forum and to the whole CustoMac thing and I would like to ask you guys (and girls) for help concering a CustoMac Pro Setup with Thunderbolt 3 connection. Thank you very much in advance for your help!!

However, I already know quite exactly what I am looking for: I am going to build a mac that I want to use for high-end audio stuff, especially a large midi template in Cubase. Currently I am working on a MacbookPro (original Apple), and I have definetly reached the limits of that machine...

So, I would like to build a Mac that can provide at least 64GB RAM and a top end i7 (7700K), and I have founds builds for that of course. But: It should also have a thunderbolt 3 connection onboard (for I would love to use a UA Twin MK II, which can only be used via Thunderbolt 3 onboard connection, not via PCI e., nor via USB).

I have found a thread on this topic here:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/thunderbolt-3-success-ga-z170x-ud5-th-startech-thunderbolt-3-to-thunderbolt-adapter.200902/

but it is old over a year by now, and it sounded alarmingly complicated and shaky to me, for I am a beginner concerning CustoMac builds. And: I am going to use this machine for business, so it should be working properly and stable.

I just wanted to ask about the current status concering Thunderbolt 3: Anyone here with up to date experiences, having a machine with the described specifications that can be got running without too many uncertainties, and that will finally work on a stable level? I have already listed parts that should work (taken from the CustoMac Pro buyer's guide), but I am absolutely unsure about stability and the Thunderbolt 3 thing:


- Gigabyte GA-Z270X-UD5 (for having a Thunderbolt 3/USB-C connection)

- Core i7-7700K (can be exchanged if necessary - just looking for a quick intel processor)

- EKL Alpenföhn Olymp (not listed in the buyer's guide - possible anyway?)

- Crucial Ballistix Sport LT (64GB) (can be exchanged if necessary)

- Samsung 850 EVO 1TB SSD
- Samsung 850 EVO 500GB SSD
- WD Red 3TB HDD


- Corsair RM 650x Watt (can be exchanged if necessary)

- be quiet! Silent Base 800 orange (not listed in the buyer's guide - possible anyway?)

no GPU actually, for I am not going to play games with this machine and onboard graphics with hdmi and display port should be enough.


I hope someone has the time and the experience to help me and give some advice. Thank you very much once again for your time and all your wisdom :)

Best,
Sebastian
 
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Joined
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So, I'm actually in the same position as you.

I'm selling my 2013 Mac Pro and building a CustoMac Pro.

I'm using it for professional audio work with cubase and logic, very intensive midi and plugins work. So performance and stability are paramount for me, and just minimal tweaking with kexts etc.

I've just ordered:

Gigabyte Z270X-UD5 because of its built in thunderbolt 3 connecter, which I will use to connect my Lunch Hilo interface to. This board should be as painless as can be for a hackintosh. I'll also be disabling PS2 ports, serial (if any), on board graphics, ethernet, onboard sound. So kexts won't be needed.

Crucial Ballistic Sport LT 32GB 2400MHz potentially doubling this in the near future. I'm not currently hitting a bottle neck with RAM with kontakt and 32gb ram, due to DFD. So doubling to 64GB *may* happen.

Intel i7 7700K native high Sierra support, and because core clock matters more than count for what we do, this will be de-lidded and overclocked to 5GHz.

Thermaltake Water 3.0 360mm AIO water cooling solution to help maintain the overclocked 7700k's temps

Corsair CX850M PSU should be enough power, consodering what I'm listing next.

Sapphire RX Vega 64 as this graphics card looks to be natively supporting with full compatibility in high Sierra. Literally no drivers, kexts required. Managed to get this at a bargain price of £460

Samsung 960 Evo 500gb NvMe M.2 not looking for regular SATA connection ssd's due to the interface bottleneck. This will be pleased to for the boot drive. Also, high Sierra will natively support NvMe ssd's.

Sound libraries for kontakt and all other virtual instruments currently live on a Sandisk Extreme 900 1.92TB internally in a RAID 0 external drive with a USB connection. this will connect to the USB 3 gen 2 port on the motherboard.

Corsair Crystal 570x literally just because it looks great

Fenvi T-919 this should bring native WiFi and Bluetooth support out of the box in Sierra and consequently high Sierra.


So, it's my aim with this hackintosh to have a high end music production build, targeting intensive DAW work and heavy usage with virtual instruments, met with rock solid stability.

I've picked as many parts as I could that could be natively supported.

So, as soon as I build it, I'll report back with how thunderbolt 3 performs and if any issues.

I've read, that it should work just fine, given maybe one change in this bios.
 
Joined
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Hey arjunchawda,

thank you for sharing your plans! It would be really awesome if you could give a report on how it turned out - I'm keeping fingers crossed :)

No one else with any experience concerning stable Thunderbolt 3 builds with up to date hardware?

best,
Sebastian
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2013
Messages
40
Motherboard
Gigabyte GA-Z270X-UD5
CPU
i7 7700K @ 5GHz 1.43V
Graphics
Saphire RX Vega 64
Mac
Mac Pro
No worries I'm just waiting for the 7700K to arrive in the next day or two and I'll be all ready together going!
 
Joined
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Very interested to hear what you gentlemen come up with. Also looking for a solid TB3 hackintosh solution for heavy video editing.
 
Joined
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Intel i7 7700K
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Nvidia GTX 970
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I build a hackintosh based on the Gigabyte Z270X UD5 with an intel I7 7700K. So far everything works. I have it in dual boot and a Nvidia GTX 970 4GB. The only thing that I don't know if it works is the THunderbolt. I don't have any USB C/Thunderbolt devices that I can test it with. It does not show up for me. If you guys get it working. please share your solution to it. I might end up buying a USBC external HDD to test it later on.
 

Jamesbond007

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I have finally gotten round to do a test on the Thunderbolt 3 port on my GA-Z270X-UD5 motherboard and I don't have much success trying to use Thunderbolt on my present system.

I have an old Lacie Thunderbolt / USB3 3TB external hard drive which uses Thunderbolt 1 and USB3 connections. I got an Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 connector, connect the drive to the system using the connector and an Apple Thunderbolt cable, make sure the drive is turned on, and then boot into MacOS Sierra. The hard drive is not detected. System Report said "Thunderbolt : No drivers are loaded."

I have already updated the BIOS version to F5, the newest version which is said to fix the HT (HyperThreading) bug on Kaby Lake processors with HT, like my 7700K. I have also tried to change the Security Setting in the Thunderbolt Configuration menus of the BIOS from "User Authorization" to "No Security", which some had indicated before was what enabled Thunderbolt in MacOS Sierra. No dice.

The same drive is detected when it is connected via the USB3 port on the drive and the motherboard. Copying files to or from it works fine.

I have no other Thunderbolt hardware I can test at this moment.
 
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trs96

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I have finally gotten round to do a test on the Thunderbolt 3 port on my GA-Z270X-UD5 motherboard and I don't have much success trying to use Thunderbolt on my present system.
You may need to install Windows 10 first to activate the TH-bolt drivers. It's described in this guide:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/tonymacx86s-skylake-thunderbolt-3-test-build-ga-z170x-ud5-th-i5-6600k.199242/

Directions are under this part of the guide: STEP BY STEP THUNDERBOLT 3 SETUP
 
Joined
Nov 23, 2016
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I am working over 10 months with my hackintosh without any problem! I am using a UAD Apollo 8 Interface. It is connected via Startech TB3 / TB2 Adapter. I have finished my latest CD with this machine and Cubase Pro 8.5.

MoBo: GA-Z170X-UD5 TH
CPU: i7-6700K
RAM: 32GB
Integrated Graphic HD530
Harddisk: NVMe - SSD 950 PRO 256GB
macOS 10.12.6
 

Jamesbond007

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You may need to install Windows 10 first to activate the TH-bolt drivers. It's described in this guide:
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/tonymacx86s-skylake-thunderbolt-3-test-build-ga-z170x-ud5-th-i5-6600k.199242/

Directions are under this part of the guide: STEP BY STEP THUNDERBOLT 3 SETUP
But there is NO Thunderbolt Firmware Update Tool under the Utility section of the website for the GA-Z270X-UD5, in contrast to the GA-Z170X-UD5 TH. That's why I don't think I should ever need to "activate" Thunderbolt on the Z270 board. I may still try to install Windows and then the Thunderbolt drivers to see if such a step is still necessary, but it will have to be later.

Well, anyway, this was intended as a test only. Having no thunderbolt 3 at this moment has no impact on me. I should continue to watch if anyone can make it work consistently on these motherboards.
 
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