Acer Predator (Vega 56+Ryzen 2) Helios 500

Discussion in 'Acer' started by ThatOldGuy, Jun 3, 2018.

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  1. Deks

    Deks Notebook Prophet

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    This is a problem with any OEM.
    They will give you vague references or replies to anything... even if they DO design a powerful machine.
    Which is just a waste.
    What's the point of having a powerful machine if support for it dies roughly 6 months after release?
    New software and hw keeps coming out, and OEM's have to understand that people cannot shell out £1500/$1500 every year for a new laptop/computer (very few people - if anyone - actually does this).

    To me, it says that OEM's are mostly lazy and neglectful cheapskates. They are happy to take your money initially, but won't care one way or another if you experience issues or down the line a problem crops up which could be fixed with a BIOS update... only to discover they don't intend on releasing such updates, and if they do, well, you better have a contingency plan in case the BIOS install fails for whatever reason (which was known to happen even if you do everything right) since the OEM's are too lazy to spend any extra resources (which are minimal to say the least) to have a secondary backup BIOS and reliable recovery for consumers in place because, lets face it... many crucial security, performance and compatibility upgrades will have to be done via BIOS microcode upgrades (which we see is being done today - for both AMD Ryzen and Intel hw)... and if the OEM's provide years long support for their desktop mobos free of charge along with microcode upgrades which allow installation of newer generation of CPU's (provided the chipset supports it - which is the case for AM4, but less so for Intel)... what's the problem in doing the same for laptops?

    I'm surprised more people aren't outraged by the state of affairs of how OEM's treat their laptops (and their consumers).
     
  2. TheReciever

    TheReciever D! For Dragon!

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    There is a reason I'm still using my ranger.

    Even the state of applications or at least the ones I use seem disparaging.
     
  3. ubersonic

    ubersonic Notebook Enthusiast

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    Sort of, I've been using desktop replacement notebooks for nearly 20 years now (since the Inspiron 9100 created the market segment) and used dozens of manufacturers, generally the top tier manufacturers offer better support than the lower tier manufacturers (but lower value to boot), but yeah upgradability of laptops has never been a strong point for anyone. Even with slot in GPUs they normally use firmware locks to limit what you can install, and nobody really adds support for additional CPUs, hell even when Intel do their tick/tock updates manufacturers never added BIOS support to laptops for the CPUs that kept the socket (I.E Ivy Bridge).

    Playing devils advocate here, but did Acer advertise upgradability as a selling point of the laptop? No they did not and so anyone who expected to be able to swap out the CPU is more a victim of their own abnormally high expectations than Acer's broken promises. Don't get me wrong I would love for us to be able to install newer CPUs, but this is not something that was ever promised/expected, it's not something you can normally do on a laptop (even in the £2000 range) and laptops that do promise that feature usually charge heavily for it.

    It's obvious that you're still annoyed about your failed BIOS flash issues (and who can blame you), but you have to understand that you fell victim to a one in a million issue. There's always a chance that a BIOS flash can go bad, hell even if you're hooked up to a UPS and running ECC RAM it's a possibility, this is why unlike drivers it's only recommended to update a BIOS if you need too (not saying you didn't just making the point), it's never guaranteed to be issue free. But it is also a one in a million issue, I've flashed over 1000 laptops in the last year and *touches wood* not lost any, this is why hardly any motherboards/graphics cards and practically no laptops use dual BIOS, because for the added cost to saving ratio (cos of adding it to every board vs replacing a failed board) it isn't worth it for the manufacturer or the consumer.

    Yes, that was the info I stated above that drew the angst from the guy who didn't seem to understand MXM/BGA not being exclusive terms.

    Using them ATM, no issues to report (that weren't already present lol).
     
  4. starkid84

    starkid84 Newbie

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    yeah, seems to be business as usual.

    I was aslo under the impression that upgrade ability was part of how they marketed this laptop. If not, a lot of the early reviewers were touting upgrading to future processors being a strong selling point.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 21, 2019
  5. starkid84

    starkid84 Newbie

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    So given that OEM's tend to abandon their HW almost immediately after initial sales. do you guys think Clevo laptops are a better option for getting a desktop replacement cpu?
     
  6. SMGJohn

    SMGJohn Notebook Evangelist

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    Upgrading is nice if it works but the problem is its expensive, VERY time consuming and problematic to upgrade laptops that do support it, I had laptops for 17 years and at no point until 2012 could I afford one that allowed upgrades.
    I also almost never found myself making good use of such heavy gaming laptops for gaming on the move.
    In my opinion if you absolutely need to take your 5 - 6kg gaming laptop with you just to play games then perhaps one should reevaluate life choices.
    And having no space for a desktop is nonsense, desktops can be built so damn tiny.
    The only legit use for a gaming laptop is if you travel a lot because gaming laptops are neither cheap or sensible long term.

    That AMD Acer is nice but upgrading CPUs over several generation has almost NEVER been possible on laptops except a few Clevos with custom BIOS.

    In fact if you want upgradable laptops then Clevo is the only way to go but even that is no guarantee and laptop MXM cards are extremely expensive when 1070 came out on MXM you could buy 1080 Ti for same price...
    Is that sensible? No.

    I do not understand this talk about Acer supporting second gen Ryzen on their laptop, this is Acer we are talking about, they make hundreds of laptop variants a year, its not like Clevo who make a few dozen, Acer had always been quantity over quality.
    Upgradability on Acer has always been shoddy even on their old MXM laptops.
    Want Upgradability? Buy a desktop, sorry but that is reality of owning laptops, BGA, PGA, LGA, MXM makes no difference but ease of repair.

    Sent fra min SM-G970F via Tapatalk
     
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  7. starkid84

    starkid84 Newbie

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    I honestly use gaming laptops as mobile workstations for multimedia creation.

    I own several desktops that I built personally for my studios, but I am traveling a lot, doing a lot of work outside of a static work environment and would prefer to invest 'mobile setup' that can perfom on par with my desktops.

    I would hate if I purchased an AMD Helios 500, just to find out they are releasing a new version in 2 months.... especially if they wont support an upgrade for at least 1 generation of new AMD cpu's.
     
  8. SMGJohn

    SMGJohn Notebook Evangelist

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    Those are legit reasons, if you travel and need power, gaming or workstation laptops are the only way but I hate to put it this way, its a common practise by Notebook manufacturers to never really offer any form of upgradability and instead profit from releasing newer models forcing people to buy them, makes sense business wise ethically its just poor taste, not even Clevo "officially" have any form of upgrade program for their laptops, all those upgrades are done by third parties and aftermarket offerings like Eurocom.
    MSI and Dell/Alienware also had some form of upgrading paths for their laptops but those were only one upgrade offering, specially with Alienware you only got to get one newer gen GPU but that was it and you had to pay blood money for those upgrades.

    It is in my humble opinion that today it makes a lot more sense to buy some BGA laptop, use an external GPU for extra power and actually there are a lot of good offerings these days with pretty powerful GPU's, 1660Ti, 2060 etc and some even have Rx 580 and those are good GPU's even today its by no means bad.

    But in my humble opinion, only Clevo have good upgradable laptops and its only because of the community behind it who made it all possible specially thanks to all those who made custom BIOS/UEFI for them allowing them to support all sorts of GPU's and CPU's, remember the Clevo P1x0 does not support 10xx gen GTX without unlocked BIOS.
     
  9. Deks

    Deks Notebook Prophet

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    Meh, even top tier manufacturers have a tendency to abandon support for their laptops relatively fast.
    It only further fuels the problem of laptops being neglected by OEM's.
    This shouldn't be tolerated by consumers.

    To clarify... I did NOT buy the Helios 500 solely on the ground of it being upgradeable, however, the laptop costs £1700/$1700, and is classified as a gaming/productivity machine.
    To be honest, lack of ability to upgrade replaceable components (such as the CPU) is ridiculous for that kind of machine, especially because AMD continuously provides new BIOS updates that include microcode updates, security, efficiency and performance updates, and Acer used a socketed/removable desktop grade CPU. If they had no intention of including support for Zen 2 and Zen 3, they should have soldered the thing to the mobo like they did with the GPU.

    Furthermore, RAM upgrades would be needed to eek out maximum performance from the Ryzen+ CPU, and Acer messed up things on that front by putting 2400mhz RAM inside (they should have included 2400 or 3000 MhZ RAM with low timings) and on top of that placed it beneat the keyboard, which makes it impossible to upgrade the RAM without full disassembly (and that can be precarious for many people along with too much effort).

    Also, Acer themselves released several BIOS updates for Helios 500 that tout hw compatibility for Windows 10 and proper display performance.

    You cannot expect of people to NOT upgrade their software (such as Windows) which relies on new updates to seal security breaches, improve performance, etc. and then tell them 'upgrade the BIOS at your own risk' (which you need to ensure compatibility with latest software).
    Why offload responsibility of BIOS updates to the consumer when its the manufacturer that made them in the first place and is their job to ensure they work?

    I am still annoyed about my failed BIOS because I have work to do and I cannot do ANYTHING because its taking a ridiculous amount of time to ship the new mobo to UK so the repair crew can replace it (as opposed to me having the ability to recover the BIOS myself on an existing mobo within 10 minutes - so basically, they turned what should be a 5-10 min job into a month long haul that's costing me precious time and projects).

    Also, I don't agree that integrating dual BIOS or a suitable/working contingency to restore previous working BIOS adds too much of a cost/time... its a minor feature that should have been integrated a LONG time ago.
    Heck, if Windows OS can be repaired or restored to earlier functional version, why not the same with the BIOS?

    I don't care if its a one in a million issue. The fact you can still end up with a corrupt BIOS despite doing everything 'right' and with no way of repairing the damage in 2019 is nothing short of absurd (and the issue affects a lot of people to this day).

    BIOS upgrades are becoming necessary today due to security and compatibility of hw to ensure it works as intended with latest software.
    If AMD is providing frequent BIOS updates, and OEM's include them for free for their desktop mobos, then quite frankly, I don't see the problem of doing the same for laptops (especially on high end gaming machines).

    Premium or not, OEM's shouldn't abandon their product support. They should support it for AT LEAST how long the warranty lasts (typically 2 years).
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
  10. SamuelL421

    SamuelL421 Notebook Enthusiast

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    My HP 8770w received it latest bios update in May. That marks about 7(!) years of really solid support. I really want a new workstation laptop but no one has delivered a well-supported (Asus / Acer Ryzen systems) solution in that doesn't cost a small fortune (take your pick of i7/i9/Xeon DTR notebooks).

    Acer came close with the Helios 500, it checked all the right boxes with the exceptions of support and an MXM GPU. I'm hoping Acer steps up its game and brings an update to market soon - either that or another OEM takes the mantle and delivers a desktop replacement AMD system.
     
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