Are the current BGA chips better than the ones ATI/Nvidea put out in 2007 and after?

Discussion in 'Hardware Components and Aftermarket Upgrades' started by MatteBlacke, Aug 8, 2020.

  1. MatteBlacke

    MatteBlacke Notebook Enthusiast

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    As the title states, I'm running a very old Sony VAIO which is currently running on a half dead GPU and I've had to use the hard-dryer GPU heat stuff to make it work every 10 days. I looked a lot into this and found out about why this happens and what the solution is(Throw the laptop it is ;) ). Louis Rosmann was a great resource. Looks like Nvidea put out chips that failed in 2007 and ATI went through that phase soon after...

    I'm terribly frustrated whenever I have to disassemble the laptop and heat the chip and reassemble it again.


    Now, I'm in the market for a new laptop and thinking about this, I'm wondering if the current chips are any good in reliability... Especially since most of the components are being soldiered on. The CPU on my laptop is socketed and still works well.
     
  2. moral hazard

    moral hazard Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    It was particularly bad in 2007, I don't think it's really ever been the same since.

    However there were some more recent examples where that type of issue pops up, like the PS4.

    Sometimes the Nintendo switch can have a BSOD error which is "fixed" with the bga reflow method.

    Having said that, I personally wouldn't stress over that issue in 2020, I do think it's nowhere near as frequent. There's plenty of other ways GPUs and CPUs fail though.

    I never noticed as many failed Intel CPUs in 2007, but these days on eBay I can find a lot of dead coffee lake CPUs.
    And I have in my possession 1 dead skylake and 1 dead kaby lake cpu.

    I prefer to pay a premium for a machine that has replaceable components (like Clevo). And at the same time I go for a bulky machine with better cooling over a thin and light one.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2020
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  3. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    @MatteBlacke

    1. Modern chips generally don't suffer from the same problem, at lest in any meaningful numbers.

    2. Most modern CPUs have iGPUs, so even if a discrete GPU dies, the laptop remains perfectly usable.
     
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  4. senso

    senso Notebook Deity

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    The problem was the solder between the IC and the interposer, due to rushed move away from lead based solder to the initial SAC alloys that where brittle and didn't withstand thermal cycling.
    New products can also fail due to thermal cycling stress leading to broken solder balls, but now its either bad mechanical design that transmits vibrations for the PCB, or crappy cooling solutions that create high thermal variation(99ºC under load to ambient temps when off), plus bad PCB design by not taking thermal effects into the design.
     
  5. MatteBlacke

    MatteBlacke Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thanks for detailed yet brief answer! So what this explains is newer machines are more reliable and only die when used extremely and or they have crappy/Faulty designs.
     
  6. pete962

    pete962 Notebook Evangelist

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    that particular problem was solved, but there are no guarantees new ones don't show up, some totally unexpected. For example some keys on my laptop keyboard broke, when trying to replace it I broke the trace, so I ordered whole new keyboard. Now, replacing keyboard on the laptop used to be simple and straightforward job, which I did few times in the past. This new laptop to replace keyboard I had to take whole laptop apart, including screen hinges, usb ports and break off about 50 plastic rivets, freaking nightmare. And actually I feel older laptops were build to last and to be fixed if something broke, where new stuff is build to last less time and be thrown away if something breaks.
     
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  7. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    True. Even business-class and workstations have become less durable and often harder to repair, over the years.
     
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  8. saturnotaku

    saturnotaku Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    This is why it no longer makes sense to spend tons of money on a high-end machine. You're better off going with something that has more modest specifications and putting the leftover funds away toward a new laptop in 2-5 years. It's a sad effect of our throwaway consumer culture, but it is what it is.
     
  9. pete962

    pete962 Notebook Evangelist

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    That's exactly what I do. Not worth it to buy high-end and be disappointed for some shortcomings, you may not even know exist until later.
     
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