Quantcast S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

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  1. #1
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    Default S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    This thread is getting too large, and too difficult to find useful information. Thank you to everyone who has put forth efforts into the investigation. At this time I feel we can safely say that there isn't any investigating left to do, so without further ado, please direct yourselves to this great help-thread with information about what the problem is, and how you can circumvent it:

    S-XPS 1645 Throttling Info. and Updates

    ====obsolete information====

    EDIT Time, I've removed all the old information as its mostly speculative, and replaced it with useful factual information.

    The following is from a post made by our user Khaledseif on the Dell Forum. I feel this update he posted is so well-written that it deserves to be included here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Khaledseif

    Here is our group findings so far

    1. The power conservative BIOS forces the system to throttle to 7x when the power consumption is around 90 watts due to one or more of the following reasons:

    a. Limitation of the power supply capability

    b. Limitation of the motherboard to accept more than 90 watts (This reason is from DELL, but we suspect it)

    c. To increase the battery life

    d. To limit heat generation

    obviously DELL should be blamed for poor design if it is a, b, or d.

    2. Thanks to unclewebb there is a software now to unlock the throttle, this one will almost certainly put the 90 watt charger to rest or fire.

    3. Due to the power limitation, it looks like the people with the RGBLED are most affected by the problem due to the added power consumption.

    4. DELL is aware of the problem, but according to them it only affects a small percentage of people that put the system on full performance.

    5. DELL keeps saying that the 130 watts adapter is not the solution of the problem, which is quite true as it needs both an adapter and BIOS update.

    6. After a long wait, DELL acknowledged that there is a problem and that they will address it soon without announcing a time frame.

    7. We as a group lack the trust in DELL fixing the problem to our satisfaction.

    I think most of our group will agree on the above.

    With all the above said, i am quite happy that mine was returned back to DELL after a frustrating experience with DELL level 1, 2, and 3 technical support. This doesn't represent the other members as most of them are happy with their notebook but expect action from DELL.
    ThrottleStop, brought to you by Unclewebb (developer of RealTemp) has been designed to combat the throttle "feature" Dell has implemented into the design of the XPS 1645 i7's BIOS. You WILL need a 130watt Dell branded adapter unless you understand how to limit your CPU through Throttlestop to keep it from blowing up your 90watt adapter (seriously).

    This program will LITERALLY transform the performance of your i7!, it's amazing! So don't be a stingy leech and send a PM to Unclewebb to see how you can send him a donation. With this application he is literally giving you a huge performance increase in games and other applications, so $10 bucks or so is the least you can do. The link is hidden below the screenshot, and by downloading it and using it you agree to do so at your own risk.



    http://www.fileden.com/files/2008/3/...rottleStop.zip
    Last edited by Zlog; 28th December 2009 at 12:43 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    old information from first post, (aka archive, skip over it)

    UPDATE TIME, ALL PREVIOUS INFORMATION PRESERVED IN TINY-TYPE IN CASE WE NEED IT AGAIN!

    More users have received their 130watt adapters and it has been discovered that different laptop configurations are benefiting less then others from the larger AC Adapter. I think it is the consensus that ordering a 130watt adapter is still helping out (it did with me in most cases, only some performance issues remain), however with the new reports and benchmarks and testing that has been provided there does seem to be another issue (related or unrelated) that is causing the 1645 to throttle it's performance down for some (currently unknown) reason, possibley thermal or power draw related.

    At this time, I personally dont feel there is any reason to be worried about purchasing this laptop. I've really enjoyed having it and as long as you have it several notches below max brightness on the RGB screen it runs like a dreamboat sailing on a moonbeam (you read that right, lolol)


    ====================Old Stuff===========================


    Thank you, Max420 for the hard work you put into researching and troubleshooting your way to sweet, sweet (almost)victory

    This thread is for creating a central location for posting information and findings related to the Studio XPS 1645's performance being forced to throttle down due to the AC adapter not being powerful enough to provide adequet juice to the system.

    ATTENTION: This seems to be resolved. Your Dell Studio XPS 1645 has shipped with an AC Adapter that does not provide enough power to your system causing it to choke and throttle itself during high-load tasks!
    You are urged to contact Dell Support and report this issue, and link them to this thread, and request a replacement 130Watt adapter at no charge. Dell may resist doing so, so kindly link them to this thread to show them that not only have they already sent out some 130watt adapters to people, but that it is FIXING the issue.
    Please follow the link below to see a screenshot of full proof of how our XPS performs on 90watt vs 130watt adapters as well as battery power.

    >>> http://forum.notebookreview.com/show...&postcount=132 <<<

    The Issue:
    When connected to AC power, the 1645 will have degraded performance while in games. Users will experience slow downs to unplayable framerates and stuttering. People have done reports and investigations indicating that the CPU and/or GPU are failing to run at their full clock speeds. They are being throttled down as if by temperature or power requirements, however if you unplug your AC adapter and run off battery power you will experience no slow downs at all as long as you have battery saving modes disabled. (Please repost here to centralize the information!)
    Summary: On battery power, the laptop does not throttle down (unless you put it into battery saving modes). On AC Adapter power, the laptop throttles down as if it is trying to save power, or reduce temperatures. It's essentially backwards.

    Current owners' ideas of what the cause could be:

    *Under-powered AC Adapter (Ships with a 90 Watt).
    *Power Management Issues (Bug in the software, aka software patch needed).
    *Screen drawing more power at higher brightness settings and causing the issue.
    *Battery charge drawing enough power to cause the issue.

    (Grayed-out issues reflect ideas that seem to have been ruled out already).

    The results are in, we have confirmed that the 130watt adapter resolves all issues with stuttering, slowdowns, and crackling sound.

    Mods, feel free to edit information into this post as you see fit.

    Please post any information (copy/pasted or otherwise) that you have discovered or posted in the Owner's Lounge. This thread will serve as evidence towards our issue when we report to Dell with problems.
    Last edited by Zlog; 20th December 2009 at 12:39 AM.

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    Nl Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Format for test results. Credits to user Synthesia:

    Quote Originally Posted by Synthesia View Post
    I think best would be if the following comparisons could be made:

    1. Test on 100% charged battery system WITH the 90W AC Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)

    2. Test on 100% charged battery without the adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)*

    3. Test on <90% charged battery without the adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)

    4. Test on <90% charged battery WITH the 90W Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)

    5. Test on 100% charged battery WITH the 90W Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance) AND charging disabled in the BIOS

    6. Test on <90% charged battery WITH the 90W Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance) AND charging disabled in the BIOS

    7. And possible the most important one: repetition of tests 1, 4, 5 and 6 WITH a 130W Adapter.



    * Be sure to check that your Power Management profiles have not automatically changed to a lower performance/maximize mattery life type profile.
    ** In tests 5 and 6 with battery charging disabled in the BIOS this naturally means that this setting (battery allowed to charge) is kept as default/factory settings in the previous tests.
    I will be doing my own run soon, my 1645 was shipped yesterday. I'll probably receive it early next week.

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by sorenla View Post
    Hello

    I just recieved my new 1645 yesterday, but have been lurking this thread since it was first created.

    Thought i might tip in with some testing of my own, so here goes:

    Specs:
    Windows 7 x64 Pro
    Core I7 720qm
    4gb DDR3 ram
    16'' RGBled
    ATI mobility 4670*
    500gb sata

    *I have installed latest ATI drivers (8.671-091104a-091527C-ATI) using the MobilityModder from Driverheaven. All the other drivers I've just had windows handle.

    Performance settings:
    Power plan - High performance
    Powerplay - Maximum performance

    1. Test on 100% charged battery system WITH the 90W AC Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)
    6396
    sm2 2240
    sm3 2773
    cpu 2898

    2. Test on 100% charged battery without the adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)*
    7098
    sm2 2539
    sm3 3106
    cpu 2937

    3. Test on <90% charged battery without the adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)
    7026
    sm2 2489
    sm3 3092
    cpu 2930

    4. Test on <90% charged battery WITH the 90W Adapter @ Full Brightness, Wifi+Bluetooth On, etc. (Max Performance)

    6280
    sm2 2215
    sm3 2749
    cpu 2695

    So it seems I'm experiencing somewhat similar numbers as everyone else, atleast I'm seeing the same pattern with battery vs. adapter.

    I have also been running some wPrime tests aswell, using CoreTemp for monitoring meanwhile. While running wPrime 32M with only one thread, it doesn't seem turbo boost is kicking in. Not according to CoreTemp atleast. Fault with CoreTemp, or shouldn't turbo boost be kicking in at all in a situation like that ?

    On a side node. I'm experiencing sporadic flickering with the screen, when brightness is below 70ish %. Seems like the brightness switches between two different brightness levels very fast, if that makes sense? It's not very apparant, but now that I'm aware of it, it's very annoying. Anyone else experienced something similar ?

    All things aside though, I'm very happy with my laptop so far It's quite an upgrade from my previous 5 year old laptop.
    Thanks, Sorenla

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Link to thread to Dell Community by khaledseif:
    http://en.community.dell.com/forums/....aspx#19596373

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by khaledseif View Post
    Crysis benchmark

    On Charger, Battery full, maximum brightness

    Run #1- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: Low ~~ Last Average FPS: 68.75

    Run #2- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: Medium ~~ Last Average FPS: 30.24

    Run #3- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: High ~~ Last Average FPS: 20.38

    On Battery, minimum brightness

    Run #1- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: Low ~~ Last Average FPS: 80.31

    Run #2- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: Medium ~~ Last Average FPS: 50.93

    Run #3- DX10 1024x768 AA=No AA, 32 bit test, Quality: High ~~ Last Average FPS: 29.50

    Very strange indeed!!
    Thanks, khaledseif

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Asgaroth View Post
    Hey Guys, just want to thank you all for digging into this problem.

    I have THE SAME issue. Plugged in with high-brightness "Age of Conan" gives me 30-46fps but it LAGS every few sec it freezes and unfreezes after 1-2sec. Lowering brightness helps. and from the battery it's 20-30fps but no LAGS.

    i7-720 and I run stock Dell Drivers for Win 7
    Thanks, Asgaroth

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by max420 View Post
    i'm on hold right now with a support supervisor. he says he has heard of this issue. i have:

    Studio 16 XPS
    i820qm
    WLED 1600x900
    4gb DDR3 1333mhz
    256GB SSD

    i also get slowdowns in crysis, and the sound crackles as well while in game. I've been running the brightness low to compensate. I'm trying to get teh 130W cord from them, to see if that works.

    edit: they are sending me 130W adapter after using Dell Connect to view this thread. ^-^

    i showed them them page 56 post 559 of this thread, with the 3d mark score diff, told them about the crackling, and how it works on low brightness, and also that the cpu and gpu can take most of the power. they agreed.

    Thanks ikjadoon, you got me a new cord!! and nobody specified if i have to send the old cord back.
    This is our 130 Watt "Tester" when he receives it its either case closed, or more lol

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by eblock12 View Post
    My laptop is suffering even worse. I just ran some tests myself, to compare with khaledseif's run. The only difference in hardware is I have the RGBLED display. I ran 3dmark06 and Crysis, but I got lazy and didn't do the full test matrix, only one battery test on Crysis. I think these results are blatant enough. Ran with every power policy on maximum performance.

    3dmark06 (Using all defaults settings, just hit Run Test)
    A/C adapter (laptop display @ full brightness)
    5008 3dmarks

    A/C adapter (laptop display off, external monitor)
    6920 3dmarks

    Then I ran the Crysis GPU benchmark (island flyover), which I think is a more realistic test. This is on all High settings, 720p, no vsync or AA. Again all power policies at maximum including ATI PowerPlay, etc.

    A/C adapter (laptop display @ full brightness)
    Play Time: 310.13s, Average FPS: 6.45
    Min FPS: 0.36 at frame 85, Max FPS: 17.93 at frame 995

    Battery (laptop display @ full brightness)
    Play Time: 74.40s, Average FPS: 26.88
    Min FPS: 6.30 at frame 145, Max FPS: 33.65 at frame 981

    A/C adapter (laptop display off, external monitor)
    Play Time: 77.43s, Average FPS: 25.83
    Min FPS: 4.73 at frame 141, Max FPS: 33.08 at frame 874

    Other notes: When running on the A/C adapter (with laptop display) the sound would make crackling noises in Crysis, also the display rate was much lower than the framerate (i.e. even though its 6 fps, it was showing 1 fps or less). Also despite the low performance the laptop was very cool (fan stayed on low at all times). Obviously there is some bottleneck when running the RGBLED at full brightness on A/C power.
    Thanks, Eblock12

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    Default Re: S-XPS 1645 AC Power Throttle Issue Investigation

    Quote Originally Posted by Siphen View Post
    The 130W should be enough
    http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/p...9&sku=330-1830

    This one looks like a slim 210W:
    http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/p...9&sku=330-4128


    My work computer is a D630 laptop that comes with a 90W Power brick (basic core 2 duo/Intel integrated graphics); I run a 130W power brick on my docking station, way more than enough to power this laptop.

    Dell needs to send the Slim 130W Power Brick for the 1645.
    Thanks, Siphen

 

 
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