¿Best upgrades for M18X-R2? [CPU - GPU - RAM - Cooling] Best for the buck.

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by [Nikos], Apr 1, 2015.

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  1. [Nikos]

    [Nikos] Notebook Evangelist

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    Hello folks,
    I've reading for a while through all the upgrade questions I recently found over here,

    I'm very confused with which upgrades are the best for my laptop right now.

    I'm talking about the GPU's. With all the crap everyone put over NVIDIA regarding their 980M in conjunction with the Alienware. I'm not quite sure which option I should buy to get the best.

    I would like to do Overclock but what I do most is to play games such as Assetto Corsa or the new ones to come like GTA V & PCARS.

    Also I'm using Oculus Rift so the games must constantly run at 75 FPS.

    Right now I'm using a SLI GTX 680M @ slv mod vbios which can offer me something like 10K points @ Fire Strike.

    What do you think is it best for my rig?

    Buy SLI 780M and overclock it like hell or buy SLI GTX 980M?
    Third option, wait till AMD show its new GPUS a.k.a M390X?

    Which e-shops do you know for buying GPUS? (PowerNotebooks, Eurocom, RJTech, eBay... any others?)

    I do have a DUAL PSU (660W) so the watts are no longer a problem to worry about :p

    Also I was thinking to get a 3940XM instead of my 3920XM which is capable of doing 4.5Ghz with no problem. Do you think I can get better frequencies with the 3940XM?


    Talking about cooling as you may know I'm a big fan of CLU so no discussion about it the problems comes when talking about thermal pads for GPU's memory.

    Which one is the best?
    What do you think about this one in particular?

    http://www.frozencpu.com/products/1...onductivity_170_WmK.html?tl=g8c487s1290#blank

    Which size is enough?

    Which thickness? 1mm is ok?

    I'm not quite sure if it's ok to change the default ones for new and better thermal pads.

    Thaaaaank you sooooooooo much :) Have a nice day!

    PS: My current rig is right here on my signature ^^!
     
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  2. TBoneSan

    TBoneSan Laptop Fiend

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    I don't think the upgrade to 3940xm would be worth it if you already have a 3920xm. There isn't any evidence to suggest they are better binned or capable of attaining higher clocks.
    However, with your dual PSU mod and lust for higher CPU performance I'd perhaps advice against 980m SLI unless you already use Windows 8. Windows 8 affects CPU performance by a measurable degree. About 10-15% in my experience. Couple that with 980m SLI not letting you go past 320 watt system draw (even with a dual PSU), it's a bad proposition for an overclocker / pure performance nut.
    If you already have a dual PSU and use Windows 7 you might as well get the cheaper 780m's and overclock the snot out of them to be in the neighborhood of stock 980 SLI performance.
    If your happy to let overclocking play second fiddle (both CPU and GPU) to gaming then 980m SLI and a conservative OC of 4.3ghz will give you whisper cool and quite gaming and still awesome performance.
    I play assetto corsa and was netting 130-150fps even in Spa with almost max settings (x4 AA, medium reflections) and 24 cars on track.
     
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  3. [Nikos]

    [Nikos] Notebook Evangelist

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    I have been gathering data from benchmarks and I found that 980M outperforms 780M by 6K points on average.
    If I compare my best results to 780M I realize that I am not going to feel a very huge leap in performance so I guess the best for the buck this time is the 980M since is not so overpriced compared with 780M which I do not why is still so high (780M).
    SLI 680M
    [​IMG]
    SLI 780M
    [​IMG]

    SLI 980M
    [​IMG]
    Other question came to my mind, Eurocom claims that I need bios A11 which I can not find it unlocked. The last BIOS I managed to find was A10 @ techinferno
    I do not want to have to use a default BIOS if possible.
    Eurocom advice:
    [​IMG]
    PS: I've been a user of windows 8.1 a long time and I do not care continue on it.
     
  4. kenny27

    kenny27 Notebook Deity

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    I am currently using unlocked A10 bios no worries with the 980M
     
  5. [Nikos]

    [Nikos] Notebook Evangelist

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    I'm currently using A09 which also supports UEFI and W8.1 is it enough?

    Thanks
     
  6. Alienware-L_Porras

    Alienware-L_Porras Company Representative

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    I'd say that you shouldn't upgrade the processor because the performance increase will not be noticeable between those 2. You could try the 980m's, however it's not an official upgrade. This does not mean that it won't work, it means that we won't support it under warranty.
     
  7. kenny27

    kenny27 Notebook Deity

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    I cant see why it wont work, even if it doesn't you can just flash A10
     
  8. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    Exactly, if you have issues, put your old one in and update.
     
  9. [Nikos]

    [Nikos] Notebook Evangelist

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    SLI 980M on the way.
    Any tips before doing the assembling? Some VBIOS in particular?
    The package comes with this:
    1/ Nvidia GTX 980M VGA Cards x 2 cards
    2/ X-Bracket with matching screws x 2 sets
    3/ Thermal Pads (for VRAM chips)x 2 sets
    4/ Thermal Paste (ICD 7)
    5/ SLI Cable included
    Anything else I might need?
    I appreciate your help. Thanks.
     
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  10. kenny27

    kenny27 Notebook Deity

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    No not really, your good to go so long as you get the right drivers
     
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