Mr Maestro
1 Nickel

17 R5, AGA troubles

So I'm having very little success getting these 2 devices to work together.  I am going to outline as briefly as I can my experience and hope someone has some suggestions.  My R5 has a 1080 in it and in the AGA I tried a 1080 and a 1080ti.  Same results.  

Card is installed in the AGA (Alienware Graphics Amplifier), cable is connected to AGA ports, and powered up.

At the windows login screen I hear the sounds of a device being installed and then the screen goes blank.  Plugging in a second monitor to the AGA is also blank.  So I unhook the AGA and restart.  Windows boots.  I can see the Alienware logo.  I get to the login screen and the screen shuts off but computer is on.  Try plugging an HDMI and Display port cable to a second monitor and nothing is output.

So I restart the R5 in safe mode without the AGA attached.  The only way I can get in to Windows.  I go to device manager and disable the internal 1080.  Then I reboot.  I can get in with just the intel video operating.  Back to the device manager and I try to update driver on the 1080.  It says I have the best driver.  So I re-enable it.  Monitor flashes, shuts off, and I am back to nothing being out.  Another safe mode boot, disable 1080, reboot, and I'm in.  I download the Nvidia Driver package and do a Clean Install.  Now I can boot my computer without the AGA and it works perfect as it should before the mess started.

So for fun, I disable the 1080.  Shut down.  Hook up the AGA.  Boot up and it sees the card in the AGA but says there is a problem.  So I right click and select update driver from Windows.  It finds a driver, downloads, and reboots.  Now it works with the AGA via a second monitor.  Great!  Not so fast.  So I shut down, unhook the AGA, boot up, and I'm back to the screen turning off at the login!  I have to go back to safe mode, disable, and the rest.  

My best guess is that the internal 1080 is not playing nice with the AGA.  And once the AGA is removed some settings is keeping the 1080 from working right.  Maybe the driver with the AGA?

And since I leave no stone unturned I figured I would try it with a Thunderbolt eGPU enclosure.  Everything installs perfect, reboot, windows login screen.  NO VIDEO!!  What the heck.  Had to do the safe boot thing again to get back to normal.

So to summarize.

Internal 1080 works great.

AGA does something to the internal 1080.  So does a Thunderbolt eGPU.

And that's all I can conclude.  Any help is greatly appreciated.

TIA!

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5 Replies
DougalAW
1 Nickel

Re: 17 R5 with Alienware Graphics Amplifier troubles

One of the Alienware social managers made a post on Reddit about the M15 and Alienware Graphics Amp, so I wonder if it might be a similar situation with your R5, if it was a fairly recent purchase?

https://www.reddit.com/r/Alienware/comments/9so1mg/psa_the_alienware_graphics_amplifier_requires/

I don't have an AGA so not something I've had experience with, but potentially something worth trying?

Regards

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Mr Maestro
1 Nickel

Re: 17 R5 with Alienware Graphics Amplifier troubles

Thanks. I want to say originally I had the experience package installed but I will absolutely try it again. What’s odd is I get the exact same response trying it out with a thunderbolt eGPU
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Mr Maestro
1 Nickel

Re: 17 R5 with Alienware Graphics Amplifier troubles

Well I spent many hours with this.  Sadly I finally decided I had to return it.  I work in IT and have a pretty extensive knowledge of how to troubleshoot and I could not get the AGA to work with my R5 17 as intended.   I read many success stories but I just could get it to work.  I will keep checking the forums and I ever see some kind of firmware update to either unit I will be glad to jump right back in.

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Tanim2607
1 Copper

Re: 17 R5, AGA troubles

So u r saying that we, r5 owners, should not buy the AGA, right??

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Mr Maestro
1 Nickel

Re: 17 R5, AGA troubles

I think it’s worth a shot as long as you can return it.  As a side note I did finally get an egpu to work with the r5 using a razer core x and an msi 2080.

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