Alas, so late: Finally addressed F500 series GPU problem
If you object to fan noise, read no further. I realize many folks do, and it's OK. I don't. But if fan noise irritates you, just move on. There is nothing whatsoever in this post for you. Good-bye.
I finally have addressed the GPU heat problem in my Compaq Presario F572US . . . five years late. I owned two of these little ovens. One died and went back last year as result of the class action settlement. It was replaced for free with a CQ56-115DX. But my other F572US was virtually new with scant few operating hours. It worked just fine. I didn't send it in, decided instead to attempt repair of the irreparable. Here is what I did:
Total disassembly was followed by careful measurement of distance between top of GPU and heat sink using feeler gauges. That gap was bridged by a single silver shim of the exact thickness; not all that expensive as only 0.025" thick. The silver replaced existing thermal foam. Foam was in fine shape, BTW, as laptop had so few hours.
Unplugged fan and re-worked connector by removing yellow and white wires. They could be put back but, that's not going to happen. Re-assembled laptop.
The bad part for those with fan noise sensitivity is that the fan now runs full speed all the time. The good part is that my GPU temperature now is below 45°C all the time, as measured with GPU-Z.
As everyone knows by now, those GPUs had bad solder balls. So I decided to trade off fan life and fan noise annoyance in return for the lowest GPU temperature I could achieve. I figure I can replace the fan when it wears out. New fan assemblies cost circa $15 on eBay. But once the GPU checks out that's pretty much the end. It would not be worth purchase of a new MOBO for such an old laptop. And the ubiquitous heat and reflow fixes for these bad GPUs never appealed to me, even though the fix works for a while.
I did do an initial trial without modifying the fan. The silver shim helped lower my GPU temp by circa 10+°C, into the low 60's immediately after fan shutoff, extending up to about 68°C at which point the fan came on. But GPU-Z provides only an average GPU temperature. Those aware of the bad solder balls situation know there is hot spotting. Also, I did not like the temperature cycling, up and down, up and down . . expand, contract . . expand, contract. Bad. So I decided to go "all-in" in an effort to protect the faulty GPU to the best of my ability by holding a lower, steady temperature. It's the best I know how to do without cutting a hole in the laptop case and mounting a larger, supplementary, fan, as others have done. That option did not appeal to me.
Also, the Compaq modified BIOS solution where the fan runs at low speed all the time was unappealing. I believe it's necessary to do more.
Anyway, if the laptop lasts a few years I might have to replace the fan. It's a tradeoff I'm willing to make in hope of extending the life of the GPU.
Forgot to mention the obvious:
From very early in its life this laptop never has run Vista, even though it was shipped with Vista. It will never run 7 or 8. It's always going to be limited to XP Pro. This because XP places fewer demands and a lower load on the GPU than do the newer operating systems. This is not something that makes me happy. Just see XP limitation as necessary to coddle a very bad and compromised nVidia GPU.
Finally on the fan noise: Am finding it not as bad as anticipated. It's because it is always there and I guess for something constant like that the mind just sort of "tunes out". When fan is cycling on and off, on and off, I notice when it comes on, notice the noise compared with the previous quiet. But with constant fan noise, honestly not all that loud, but it's the constancy that makes it (for me) less intrusive and more tolerable than I had expected.
Last edited by shinobi1; 31st July 2012 at 09:43 PM.