External graphics cards are useful for adding graphics horsepower to your laptop. Plug an external graphics card into your laptop, and it will offer you turbo-charged game performance – not quite on a par with a desktop PC, but certainly enough to support a bit of gaming on the go.
There are a few different kinds of external graphics card. Razer offers the Razer Core – an eGPU unit that comes in at graphics-card prices, and that works only with a handful of machines – but that offers stunning performance when it does work.
There’s also the PowerColor Devil Box – another Thunderbolt 3 based box that comes with four USB ports, an ehternet port and an internal drive bay, as well as, of course, a lot of graphics power. This particular device is, again, not certified to work with all Thunderbolt 3 equipped laptops – the ‘officially compatible’ list is incredibly small. It will most likely work with devices not on the list, but that’s quite a risk to take.
The Alienware Graphics Amplifier works with a number of Alienware laptops, and it’s perhaps the best external graphics card for those who are just looking to experiment. It’s far less expensive than many of the other models, but still offers stellar performance, and, since it’s made by Alienware and designed for use with their laptops – which are some of the better gaming laptops on the market these days – you can be confident that you’ll get decent performance out of it.
A desktop will always be a better option for gaming, but this is a great way of getting your laptop up to competent performance if you spend a lot of time working on the road, and still want to game.