External graphics card enclosures designed to add gaming performance to otherwise pedestrian laptops seem to be popular in 2016. Earlier this year at CES we saw an enclosure from Razer that connects to its Razer Blade Stealth ultrabook, and Asus unveiled the ROG XG2 graphics dock, which uses PCIe over USB Type-C. MSI later introduced an AIO PC with an external enclosure hanging off its back.
AMD also jumped into the fray by creating AMD XConnect, a technology (part of Radeon software) that allows AMD graphics cards to function over Thunderbolt 3.
PowerColor is the latest company to join the club with its PowerColor Devil Box, which leverages AMD’s XConnect technology. The Devil Box is a 15.75 x 6.75 x 9.5-inch enclosure that sits next to your mobile or compact desktop PC. The Devil Box features a 500w internal power supply, with 375w dedicated to the GPU. The additional wattage powers the enclosure itself, which also features a number of I/O ports. PowerColor included four USB 3.0 ports, one USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-C port, a gigabit Ethernet jack and a SATA III port to support an additional hard drive, and all of this is handled by a single Thunderbolt 3 40Gbps cable.
The Devil Box is large enough to handle graphics cards as long as 12.2-inches and as tall as 5.5-inches. The box is also only capable of enclosing graphics cards that are 1.96-inches wide (or less), which will make it difficult to fit many of the custom R9 390X cards since they are typically wider than the Devil Box’s limitations.
PowerColor said the Devil Box will support most of AMD's current GPU lineup, with the exception of the Fury X (no water cooling support), as well as the R9 285, R9 290 and R9 290X. Nvidia's entire Maxwell lineup, from GTX 750 through Titan X, is also supported. There was no mention of the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070, but we can’t imagine why they wouldn’t work also.
PowerColor did not say when the Devil Box would be available, and we don’t know the price yet.