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Alienware m17x R3 gpu upgrade

Discussion in 'Alienware 17 and M17x' started by Kamil Ilyas, Feb 25, 2017.

  1. Kamil Ilyas

    Kamil Ilyas Newbie

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    Hello everyone,

    I know this has been discussed on many other forums as this is an old model of Alienware that i have but i still wanted to know the differences. Currently I have (or had) gtx460m that started giving me problems and has almost completely stopped working so I was looking for an upgrade/replacement. I had seen some good online buys for the gtx460m so there is that option for getting the same thing but what I wanna ask you guys or get a suggestion on is that should I upgrade to a better card (which i can, as the price diff is not that much). I have looked into compatible cards with BIOS updates for my R3 and for my 3d screen that runs at 120hz, namely the gtx580m, gtx765m, gtx770m, gtx780m. I mean obviously one would go for a more recent or better hardware card but all of these cards have a lower score than the gtx460m on http://gpuboss.com/, whats up with that ? How is this card better even from the acclaimed gtx780m ? All this has left me really confused and any help or suggestions would be really appreciated, thanks in advance.
     
  2. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    Hi there, my R4 was originally an R3 replaced by dell.

    The best card for a machine of that vintage is the 680m. I can attest to the way-superior performance over the original 675m. Unfortunately you loose 3d and need to mod the driver to install.

    No BIOS mods needed on the 120hz model.

    The 580m should be plug and play as that was the R3 top card before the R4. This keeps 3D but the 580m was a very poor card and died all over the place. I've lost count, NEVER OC this card! On stock the average life I've seen is around 18months to 2 years

    You will prob also need the heatsink. I got mine directly from the AW help line. Asking for the 680m R4 heatsink. Comes ready to screw together so no need to hunt down pad sizes or placement :D.

    Good luck
     
  3. Kamil Ilyas

    Kamil Ilyas Newbie

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    Hey MickyD1234. thanks for the reply, I'm not really up for 3d thingies, so I can live with that. So what you are saying is that the 680m is much better and would be compatible with my machine ? also, what kind of modding would the driver need as I have never done and what kind of obstacles it entails. Some links for the 680m buy would be great :)

    And thanks again for confirming what I have heard about the 580m, i think i will avoid it altogether.

    Won't the standard 2-pipe heatsink for the gtx460m work for this card ? and what about the power supply ? Thanks in advance.
     
  4. ll_r1d0_ll

    ll_r1d0_ll Notebook Consultant

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    Hi sir..having a problem here...actually my card (gtx580) died after 2 years and as i bought the laptop used and i dont even know how it died..i was using it under load for cracking some hashes and by sudden my laptop turned off and didnt turn on ..everytime i plugged the charger it gave a sparking type sound and burning smell from charger's front tip and the charger's led light turned off....then i removed my card and the laptop turned on ( i am typing from this laptop) ..now as in my country it is almost impossible to find cards for these laptops...i have got 3 ATI cards at my friend's shop...all of them get detected in bios as ATI GFX but when the laptop boots windows( i am using windows 8.1 pro) and attempt to install the drivers...it fails...in device manager i can see them as ATI 6900 mobility driver something i guess..my friend tested all of the 3 cards on the m6700 machine and they worked..btw i have a modified A12 bios and i am out of ideas that what to do ...i cannot stay on INTEL VGA :( I am tired of playing DOTA on lowest graphics lol..suggest me what to do ? your help will be appreciated...awaiting your answer :)
     
  5. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    The card needs a 3 pipe heat-sink as it's a 100w card. When I got mine from dell it was reasonably cheap. Around £40.00 for the heat-sink/pads in-place, and a semi-hard phase-changing paste :eek: no idea if true. I was told in a conference call with AW engineers). Anyhoo I tried it by just screwing together and testing. The temps were so low I never went back to use expensive paste!

    The driver needs an ini file edited with your machine ID and card ID. Only approved combo's get to install.

    I used to get them (just the inf) from laptopvideo2go.com. The site has gone through a major change and you'll need to look at their forums. Somebody always posts the file when a new driver comes along. If you get 'hardware not found' in the NV driver this is what happens if it is not modded.

    If you are running win 8 or 10 there is also another step to allow modded drivers to install.

    Reason for 680m over others:The 780m is just an overclocked 680m (with a few more cores) and runs quite hot. Also known to have audio problems on the R3. The 880m was a horrible card from what I saw when it released. Hundreds of complaints so that one is out IMO.

    The 680m also runs very cool and has great potential. I run mine with around 35% clock increase along with a voltage hike. I was seeing around 80fps in Batman AC.

    I got mine from a private ebay sale so can't advise there but I will check out any links you find. Preferably you want a 2 mb version. There is also a 4gb Clevo version. This works fine AFAIK in the R3 (and it's already unlocked ;)).
     
  6. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    Sorry man, I know nothing about ATi drivers. I've not used them for years. If you see the card description then some sort of driver is loaded. Could be a win one and is conflicting with a fresh installation?. There is a utility for stripping driver information from everywhere.DDU http://www.wagnardsoft.com/ is the author as this gets posted all over the place.

    Might allow the Ati driver to install.

    Just a thought, try the 580 card in again (unless it has burn marks anywhere on it!). If it starts then you might have fixed the fault just by luck??

    Good luck
     
  7. ll_r1d0_ll

    ll_r1d0_ll Notebook Consultant

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    hi thanks for the reply..as for trying the card again..i really didnt saw any burned marks ...i diagnosed every single part but couldnt find any damaged or burnt component..i tried to diagnose the capactiors with a multimeter set at BEEP mode...all the capacitors were ground on both terminals..dont know whats wrong with it.... :(
     
  8. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    That sounds wrong! When a capacitor blows they stink and often are warped - well the ones I am familiar with many years ago... Thinking about it, it could be a ground on the common feed line. All I can suggest at this point is a reflow.

    The card goes into an oven at a set temp and bakes the card softening the solder.
     
  9. ll_r1d0_ll

    ll_r1d0_ll Notebook Consultant

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    currently not having an oven ..but have an SMD WORKSTATION xD..i guess i can give it a try
     
  10. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    That's a serious piece of kit! Good luck...
     
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