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9550 throttling woes making the machine almost unusable :(

Discussion in 'Dell XPS and Studio XPS' started by CraftyClown, Oct 13, 2017.

  1. GoNz0

    GoNz0 Laptop Engineer & Online games hosting.

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    I would hope either they have no mainboards or can't resolve it as that will result in you getting a 9560!

    Sent from my SM-G920F using Tapatalk
     
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  2. CraftyClown

    CraftyClown Notebook Guru

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    Oooh. I hadn't even considered that possibility! :D
     
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  3. GoNz0

    GoNz0 Laptop Engineer & Online games hosting.

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    Yeah having a recurring problem a few months before the warranty is up has its perks. Once the outlet no longer stocks your laptop you can be sure parts are also load stock, they have to upgrade you then.

    Sent from my SM-G920F using Tapatalk
     
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  4. CraftyClown

    CraftyClown Notebook Guru

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    Good afternoon all,

    I thought I should update this thread with my progress as it's been a couple of weeks.

    So as a brief reminder I have the 9550 6700HQ with 4k screen, 16 gig of ram and the 1TB NVMe PM951. I occasionally use this machine for my work which puts the machine under quite a bit of load as my business is video production meaning both the CPU and GPU can be heavily taxed for long sessions.

    I started this thread as I had been experiencing severe power limit throttling within minutes, under what I would consider medium to heavy loads. Upon testing I discovered I couldn't even get through a Prime95 test without being throttled down to 800mhz in less time than it would take to make a cup of tea.

    Fast forward a couple of weeks and I have got this puppy purring like a kitten now. Not only can it cruise through a Prime95 test, but I can also finish a 15 minute Realbench stress test without the throttle kicking in. (Disclaimer; This was with the device on a basic cooling pad)

    It's taken a fair amount of blood, sweat and tears to get here and a great deal of what I tried made no difference at all, but looking at the performance improvements I'm getting I'm glad I made the effort :)

    So my current setup is as follows;

    1. Targus AWE55EU cooling pad. It's not particularly powerful, however it does reduce temperatures across the board by 1 or 2 degrees whilst also allowing me to work more comfortably.

    2. I have added thermal pads to the VRM chokes. I used 2 x 1mm thick 6 W/mk pads to ensure they make contact with the case back. This has reduced the VRM ambient temps considerably and I rarely now see them rise above 80 degrees, even under sustained heavy loads. Despite the pads making contact with the case, their low conductivity is preventing the back side of the device from becoming noticeably hot, even without the use of the cooling pad.

    3. Using Throttlestop I have undervolted my CPU Core and Cache to 150.4 mV and the Intel GPU to 99.6. My system appears to be fully stable with these numbers.

    4. Once again using Throttlestop I have set Speed Shift EPP to 72. After much testing this is appears to be a sweet spot where I can maintain maximum speeds during the Realbench stress test.

    5. I have re-pasted the CPU and dGPU with Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut paste using the rice sized application method.

    6. I have re-padded the VRAM with 0.5mm 6 W/mk pads, except for the chip below the heatsink pipe where I have used a 1mm pad to ensure contact.

    7. I have updated DPTF to version A08

    8. My bios is 1.14

    9. The Intel GPU is set to Max battery

    10. The Nvidia GPU is set to High performance

    11. In Dell Command power management I have thermal management set to Ultra performance

    12. Under power options I have high performance selected


    Some of these tweaks and mods have probably made a lot more of a difference than others, however the bottom line is that I am now able to use the device as I had originally intended, without fear of a complete meltdown.

    Many thanks to all those who threw their advice into the pot and I sincerely hope this thread proves helpful to any others who may have similar issues.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2017
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  5. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    Thanks for the update @CraftyClown

    You are one of the few that have balanced the case bottom cooling challenge. It is easier with the 9550 as there is less overall heat than with the 9560. Plus you are using an external fan & weak thermal pads on the chokes only.

    You might be able to tweak a bit more performance in ThrottleStop (See @Vasudev comments in Throttlstop Guide thread):

    - Look in TPL window (reallocate Intel Power balance between Intel CPU & Intel GPU). My 6300HQ is at 31 and 13, respectively. I notice the bump in speed but additional lagginess of the Intel GPU during mundane tasks.

    - You might not want to underclock the Intel GPU as it seems to cause some studdering.

    - See @unclewebb 's comments relating to getting your C-states in C7+ say 98%+ of the time during idle to minimize thermals. That requires a bit of tweaking but the additional thermal headroom helps

    Also, you might consider bumping up the package power limits and times a bit (you need to do this both in Intel XTU and ThrottleStop- search my threads for details and warnings).
     
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  6. CraftyClown

    CraftyClown Notebook Guru

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    Thanks

    Regarding your additional suggested tweaks;

    1. How is the Intel power balance worked out? By default the 6700HQ appears to have it distributed as 9 to the CPU and 13 to the GPU. Is there any other info or documentation on this?

    2. I've not heard anyone else mention to not underclock the iGPU and I haven't seen any stuttering. Is this a known issue?

    3. Cool. I'll take a look at Unclewebb's comments on C7 states.

    4. Would increasing package power limits not push me back in the other direction towards PL throttling?
     
  7. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Prophet

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    Q1:No documentation just experience. You can tweak it as you like. Under CPU heavy tasks setting more power to CPU always help because preference is given to CPU instead of iGPU.
    Q2: Only handful of people notice this on Windows UI stutter when iGPU is undervolted. Even web browsers lag sometimes because of undervolting iGPU. Like I said, only small group of people noticed this(myself included).
     
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  8. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    This helped me reduce latency performance on my computer for huge live music software. #1 & #2 provided a big improvement on my system, which is already optimized for ultra-low latency.

    Search for my postings if you are bumping into what are flagged as power limit issues (PL). It might give you a bit more headroom at the margin. But if you are pushing hard, there is only so much power the VRM will spit out and it will eventually run out of steam.
     
  9. CraftyClown

    CraftyClown Notebook Guru

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    So if I understand correctly you're saying removing the undervolting on the iGPU prevents stuttering and latency issues?
     
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  10. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    I did #1 and #2 and low latency performance improved for my Virtual Instruments. I did not test those independently. YMMV but give them a try. . .
     
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