Blackmagic eGPU

  • 2019

  • Product
    Consumer Electronics

Commissioned By:

Blackmagic Design

Designed In:


Designed by Blackmagic Design and co-developed with Apple in California, the eGPU is an external graphics accelerator that increases the processing power of Apple’s MacBook Pro. Costing $699, it is an affordable means of transforming a laptop into a professional workstation, enhancing graphics, gaming and video editing workflows.

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  • Rationalise engineering and manufacturing processes to deliver the world’s first silent external graphics accelerator for MacBook laptops. Redefine GPU aesthetics with a unique, simple design that is an antidote to the masculine styling typical in the category. The visual narrative should align seamlessly with Apple MacBooks while complimenting a range of environments. Develop a purpose-built product architecture that minimises footprint and perceived size while optimising thermal efficiency for silent operation. Ensure ‘Plug and play’ functionality and ease of use; must not require specialist set-up or assembly.

  • Typically, graphics accelerators are loud, unattractive, and take up large amounts of space. Driven by exhaustive research and testing, the eGPU is elegant and quiet, with a space efficient vertical format. Designed for optimal airflow, its floating form and bespoke thermal management system dissipate an unprecedented 235W of heat in virtual silence. Optimised by flow simulation technology, the unique grille is formed by a proprietary moulding process that eliminates interconnecting ribs, reducing noise and improving airflow. A global sell-out within two weeks of launch, it has had a profound impact on the way MacBook users handle professional video and graphics.

  • The core ethos of Blackmagic Design focusses on empowering creative people with affordable, accessible video technology. At $699, the eGPU offers plug-and-play functionality and high-end performance, eliminating the need for additional noisy, cumbersome and costly PCs to extend MacBook capabilities. This ensures independent colourists, editors and gamers can maximise their creative (and competitive) potential. This has significant cultural impacts, with creative expression and business success no longer constrained by affordability or technical expertise. Allowing access to high-speed, professional video acceleration the eGPU enables immersive gaming experiences, unlimited creative potential and efficient outcomes, freeing users from the constraints of inadequate technology.

  • Background - Prior to the release of the Blackmagic eGPU, many independent creatives and high-end gamers who required equivalent levels of performance were forced to purchase disparate components themselves, and construct systems that were invariably complex and bulky. With gaming and professional post-production occurring in increasingly unorthodox locations with limited work space, the ability to remain agile represents a significant competitive advantage. This comes with some drawbacks. First, off-the-shelf laptops and mobile platforms typically lack the processing power to handle professional 4K production workflows and the demands of high-resolution gaming engines. Second, while customised systems possess enough processing power, they are too cumbersome and complicated for effective mobile use, demanding time and effort for transportation and set-up that hinders productivity instead of enhancing it. The Blackmagic eGPU is the world’s first Apple peripheral to support 5K monitoring, exposing MacBook users to new levels of immersive image quality. Providing great versatility to a range of users, the eGPU also acts as a docking hub and charging station for laptops and peripherals like VR Headsets, 5K displays, big screen HDMI TVs, high speed storage keyboards, mice, thunderbolt monitors, etc.