I recently decided I would build a gaming pc solely for playing the odd game on and to go alongside both my rMBP and Thunderbolt display.
The biggest obstacle with getting this solution to work was to buy a thunderbolt compatible motherboard. The Gigabyte Z77X-UP5 TH.
My understanding behind this was natively the Thunderbolt display would only run off the integrated graphics on the machine. (HD4000) and not the dedicated. The board however offered the feature (Virtu MVP) which is software that allows the dedicated graphics to be streamed (not a technical description) to the thunderbolt ports found on the motherboard. Allowing the monitor to be plugged into the motherboard and not the graphics card which does not support thunderbolt.
I have managed to successfully get everything setup with the thunderbolt display (all drivers and operation between both the HD400 and GTX680 graphics card)
Some games seem to work perfectly (FarCry 3, SimCity), however others (GTA,Skyrim etc..) seem to be shuttering terribly, which is not an fps issue)
What would be the best solution? Are there any alternative options? Should I replace the thunderbolt with a cinema and do any hubs exist yet to convert anything over?
I'm also interested in answers to this question. I am in the same boat in that I have a Thunderbolt Display for use with my Macbook Pro and would like to also use it with a custom gaming build. Virtu MVP is, in theory, supposed to solve this problem, but I've so far found mixed comments about the support and consistency that Virtu MVP provides.
Any first-hand experience or advice would be appreciated by myself as well. Is support specific to each game?
I'm currently running a gaming rig on a Thunderbolt display. Tho it took some doing to make sure everything worked properly i now have no problems with my setup. Each game is different in order to get it to work properly, and the nvidia drivers can make games crash from time to time. I found that the older 306.97 driver for my Geforce 680 works the best with the newest Virtu MVP available. I still haven't gotten it work under Linux if anyone is interested in knowing. Linux causes all cores of the i7 to max out while connected to Thunderbolt display thus lagging the system to an unusable state.
My system: Gigabyte z77x-up5 th
i7 3770k processor
16 gb ram
nvidia geforce 2 gb 680
240 gb ssd
1 terabyte western digital (internal)
3 terabyte seagate (thunderbolt external)
Also, i did have alot of shuttering going on with Bioshock when i first tried using it, playing with the Virtu MVP settings fixed it. I turned Hyperformance off and the game runs flawlessly now. Don't know it that will help with GTA or Skyrim, but hope this info helps.
Be aware that some of the Lucid Virtu technologies are very misleading on FPS. One of their technologies is used to reduce latency, but the method causes FPS counters to report FPS far higher than it actually is.