Clevo X8100 startup problem

Discussion in 'Sager/Clevo Reviews & Owners' Lounges' started by SimoDj84, Dec 14, 2017.

  1. randomrat

    randomrat Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    5
    This is really fascinating - I have owned my Sager X8100 since 2010 and it is also suffering from random shutdowns. All temperatures seem fine and it shuts down completely randomly. Sometimes it's when the laptop is idling, other times under load - there's no pattern to it.

    I too have also replaced the NEC Tokin cap with 3x 330uf tantalum caps and it seemed to work ok for a few weeks, however the problem has come back again.

    Fitting 4x 330uf caps over the pads proved to be very difficult, but I'm thinking I should go back and try fitting the 4th one? Would it make all the difference?

    Have you had any luck with your problems?
     
  2. randomrat

    randomrat Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Update: So I took out the 3x caps I installed and replaced them with 4 of the lowest ESR tanatlum caps I could find with a 125C operating temperature.

    Part number: T530X337M010ATE006

    It was extremely tight to get all four to fit, but I ended up getting three on one side, and the fourth on the other at a very steep angle. I wish I took a photo at the time! It was relatively difficult making sure the legs were properly soldered due to the huge groundplanes, as they were taking away most of the irons heat.

    It's been a few weeks now and touch wood the laptop has been fine! No random shutdowns or anything :) Very pleased
     
    Bratzi, KY_BULLET and senso like this.
  3. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

    Reputations:
    7,520
    Messages:
    47,190
    Likes Received:
    12,739
    Trophy Points:
    931
    Soldering onto groundplanes is never fun, nice job getting it going again.
     
  4. Bratzi

    Bratzi Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    5
    I recently got a clevo X8100 with startup problems / hard shutdowns shortly after boot that could have the same cause. Here's what I did so far:

    1. When I got it, it showed a "Cannot find MBR" error. BIOS is working fine and stable & detects all hardware correctly. It sometimes takes several power button presses to start.
    2. Booting a Windows 7 x64 Install Disc worked fine until the laptop did a hard shutdown during the section where "Windows is loading files", right before the Install Wizard should appear.
    3. I then tried running Ultimate Boot CD and did a MemTest86+ which the ram passes with no errors. FreeDos based UBCD tools (to monitor temperatures) froze (no hard shutdown!) at "InitDisk" (could be a problem related to running UBCD from a USB stick), so I removed the HDD just to exclude it as a potential source for the shutdowns.
    4. With the HDD removed I tried booting Knoppix Live Linux. It resulted in a hard shutdown during "Detecting hardware (graphics, input)..." when loading the OS (during the commandline part, before the GUI loads). So I was thinking it could be a GPU heat issue.
    5. I removed the two HD 5870 cards and replaced the thermal paste. The fans were clean and even the old paste was still in okay shape, nothing that could have caused heat shutdowns. All fans are connected and working. After putting everything together Knoppix booted succesfully, but once I could use the GUI for a seconds the laptop did a hard shutdown again.
    Since the symptoms of my X8100 sound a lot like what is described in this thread I think it could also be the NEC-Tokin issue.

    I would love to double check the HD 5870 before doing any soldering, but I get no video when I try to boot up with just one card. I tried: only master installed; only slave installed; and both installed but SLI/Crossfire cable removed. All setups lead to a dark screen with the system probably booting up (LEDs lighting up as they should, CPU fan starts after a few seconds and the DVD drive starts to spin after a few seconds).

    I would be really glad if some of the more knowledgeable folks here could help me with this:

    A) Is there something I need to change when I want to go from SLI/Crossfire to using a single card only? The Bios didn't have any options concerning the MXM graphics, it's restricted to setting date/time, bios password and boot priority. Are SLI/Crossfire cards flashed with a special vBios that needs to be changed to operate as a standalone card? Or is there a hardware switch/jumper or sth. similiar I have to change?

    B) What do I need for the NEC-Tokin --> 4x 330 uF replacement besides the capacitors. I have a pretty cheap soldering iron (15W blue plastic, no-name) - would it be good to get a better one to succeed with this fix? What flux/solder/solder-removel-things would you recommend to get to make this as safe and easy as possible.

    I'm thankful for any help!

    Config: Clevo X8100 USB 3.0, 2x HD 5870, i7-740m, 2x2GB RAM, 750GB HDD (removed)
     
  5. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

    Reputations:
    7,520
    Messages:
    47,190
    Likes Received:
    12,739
    Trophy Points:
    931
    The system wont boot with only slave card installed so forget that tester. It should work fine just with the primary card with no settings changed. The likelihood that both cards are dead is low so it may be related to the above.
     
    Bratzi likes this.
  6. Bratzi

    Bratzi Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Thanks Meaker, after reading your comment I gave it another try today and realised what was (probably) the reason for the single-card no video issue: The previous owner of that X8100 had switched the position of the two cards at some point. The X8100 has its MXM slots labelled "master" and "slave", but the card in the slave slot was probably originally the master card (the crossfire cable end on the master slot, as well as the crossfire socket of the card that was installed in the slave slot had some minor residue on them, probably because they were initially secured with a sticker or piece of tape).

    With the right master card installed in the master slot video output worked again. Since the random shutdowns persist I guess it is the NEC-Tokin then.
     
  7. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

    Reputations:
    7,520
    Messages:
    47,190
    Likes Received:
    12,739
    Trophy Points:
    931
    Did you try leaving the slave card out?
     
  8. Bratzi

    Bratzi Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Yes, I left the slave card out. On my first test I accidently tried to use the Slave card in the Master socket (since I didn't notice that the previous owner had switched the two cards for some reason - master card was in slave socket, slave card in master socket, but video worked fine). So single-card video works, but the shutdowns remain. So I'm pretty convinced right now, that both graphic cards are working and it's the NEC Tokin I need to replace. So I wanna assemble a list of things I'll need for that.

    Senso recommended 330uF 2.5V Capacitors with an ESR of 25m Ohm
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/4x-SMD-T...597050?hash=item362b5aadfa:g:JKwAAOSwAKxWXfB4

    While Randomrat used 330uF 10V Capacitors with an ESR of 6 mOhm
    https://eu.mouser.com/ProductDetail/KEMET/T530X337M010ATE006?qs=AaRlLUpeMsw53NLKZ0%2bwLQ==

    The original NEC Tokin 0D108 seems to have been a 1000 uF 2V Capactor with an ESR of 1 mOhm according to this site:
    http://www.lizbit.pt/store/nec-tokin/462-nec-tokin-od108.html

    I'm no expert in electronics, but from what I found on the web the voltage stated on the capacitors specs doesn't matter too much, as long as it's higher than the original 2V (since it's more like a max voltage the cap can handle if i understood that correctly, so anything in the 2V-10V range is probably ok?). But what about ESR? And will 105°C max operating temperature be fine or is 125°C required?

    Other than the capacitors I'll get some desoldering wick and flux to remove the solder of the NEC Tokin and rubbing alcohol and pads to clean up the PCB afterwards. I already got a 15W Iron, a heat gun, tweezers as well as an exacto knife and prying tool.

    What method is safer to do? Heating the NEC Tokin with the heatgun until you can remove it with tweezers or prying off the chip?
    @randomrat Which method did you use?
     
  9. senso

    senso Notebook Evangelist

    Reputations:
    169
    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    75
    Trophy Points:
    76
    The eBay ones work OK in core2duo based laptops, but it seems like the Clevo due to its beefier CPU needs the lower ESR caps, if you are buying from Mouser, I would grab the lowest ESR 470uF caps that there are available.

    For removing the NEC-Tokin cap, my go to trick is to remove the plastic cover(easy to do, stab it in the middle with tweezers or screwdriver and the rest comes of easy).

    Then, flux all around it, heat gun at 300ºC for 2 minutes, doing circular motions around the NEC, and with a hot iron, touch the solder that is around the NEC-Tokin, when it moves, grab it with a tweezer and its done.

    Then, solder the new caps.
     
    Bratzi likes this.
  10. Bratzi

    Bratzi Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    5
    The lowest ESR ones on Mouser are 4 mOhm, but at 33,70€ for 5 pcs they seemed rather expensive, when the cheapest 5 mOhm ones are 13,05€ for 5 pcs. But when I wanted to buy them I saw that Mouser adds 20€ shipping cost for Germany, unfortunately.


    Would any of these work too? If so, which one would you recommend to buy?

    470uF, 2.5V, 6 mOhm ESR, 7343 Case, 105°C max (Part number T520V477M2R5ATE006) - 8,20€ + 3,52€ Shipping for 5pcs - https://www.ebay.de/itm/272967417294

    470uF, 2.5V, 9 mOhm ESR, 7343 Case, 105°C max (Part number 2R5TPE470M9) - 5,44€ + 3,52€ Shipping for 5pcs - https://www.ebay.de/itm/273167850329

    470uF, 6.3V, 8 mOhm ESR, 7343 Case, 105°C max (Part number 6TPB470M) - 8,46€ + 3,52€ Shipping for 5pcs - https://www.ebay.de/itm/273151851458
    (Edit: Just realized the last one was 0,08 Ohm = 80 mOhm and not 0,008 Ohm. My bad.)

    Also thank you a lot for sharing your desoldering tips! I'll use this method too then.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2018
  11. senso

    senso Notebook Evangelist

    Reputations:
    169
    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    75
    Trophy Points:
    76
    If you are in Europe, try RS and Farnell, as well as Conrad(German company), and TME.

    Mouser shipping is free above 50€, but given that you dont need 50€ of components its a useless perk for you, all other companies are located in the EU.

    10mOhm ESR:

    https://www.conrad.de/de/tantal-kon...c-6tpf470mah-1-st-1179782.html#downloadcenter

    Or the exact part number of your third link:

    https://www.conrad.de/de/tantal-kon...-x-43-mm-panasonic-6tpb470m-1-st-1179768.html

    I would settle for one of those, they are higher capacity and the ESR is in the same ballpark, 1-2mOhm can be easily lost/gained by how well/bad they are soldered.
     
  12. Bratzi

    Bratzi Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Alright, I ordered the parts as well as some flux, solderwick, isopropylalcohol and cleanroom wipes. Thanks a lot for the help, Senso.

    I'll post an update with pictures of the process once all the parts arrived and I get to attempt the repair.
     
  13. senso

    senso Notebook Evangelist

    Reputations:
    169
    Messages:
    509
    Likes Received:
    75
    Trophy Points:
    76
    Any doubt, ask before doing.
     
Loading...

Share This Page