Dell Inspiron 1520: Viable After Market Upgrades

Discussion in 'Dell Inspiron and Dell Studio' started by Mihael Keehl, Oct 1, 2011.

  1. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    If anyone here needs help trying to upgrade their Dell Inspiron 1520 or end up running into a problem and don't want to upgrade to a new laptop, here are some upgrade solutions available to you. All of the following upgrades are possible via parts found on eBay, you can find all of these as long as you know what you are looking for.

    Processor Note: Processors in the blue will run much more efficiently and produce less heat than the ones in the red, as they are manufactured by different companies. Another underlying difference is that the red processors are built upon the 65nm and the blue processors are built upon the 45nm. 45nm uses less power and produces less heat than 65nm and since its smaller allows more transistors to fit into the same space. The X9000 would probably run cooler than the X7800/X7900 for the reasons I just stated, I've marked as red as it's going to run hot because it's an overclockable processor. Furthermore, let me give you a seller warning, not to fall for the small price gimmicks, e.g. do not buy a processor that is listed at much more lower price, than others of the same kind, odds are you are buying an engineering sample or worse, a faulty processor. Check to make sure your seller is top-rated and will allow you to return the item, if you do not like it.

    Buying Screens: Try to see if you can find a combo that sells an inverter and screen together, preferably from the USA and not a knock off. There are some screens that sell for way cheaper but are also made from cheaper material. Best approach to this is buy a combo (inverter + screen) from a top-rated seller who will give you warranty of some decent amount of time. At the moment, you can get the WUXGA Screen Glossy or Matte for less than $100 on eBay. The hardest ones to find are the WXGA+ (1440x900) and WSXGA+ (1680x1050) in matte or glossy, if you find some make sure to do some research or post on the forum, so as you are not getting scammed.

    SATA Note: All SATA II (3.0 Gbps) Drives (SSD or HDDs) are backwards compatible with the Dell Inspiron 1520 SATA interface (1.5 Gbps) at no performance loss whatsoever. So do not worry about that, SATA III speeds will not be reached on the 1520.

    3G Networks: Mobile broadband is possible by purchasing the cards and installing the software which was originally intended for XPS-line but I have found that it is possible to use it on the Inspiron 1520. I tested both the Verizon/Sprint Cards and they worked, so based on that, I'm assuming it will work for the others as well.

    Bluetooth: The Dell Wireless Bluetooth 360 Module will work with the Dell Inspiron 1520 as well, I was able to determine this by accident when I ordered the wrong piece and I just installed it and use the Toshiba Bluetooth Stack in order to run it. If anyone wants that let me know they have a trial version before you can purchase the real version or choose to re-install it after 30 days.

    Windows 7 (64-Bit) Drivers: http://www.megaupload.com/?d=K3RKKWRE and for nVIDIA GeForce Driver

    That's as much as I came up with thus far, if I do any other performance modifications, I will let you all know but for the moment, this is what I have and I also ended up putting it on the WikiPedia Page so that people can look at it there as well. I'll try to update this page as much as possible, instead of people always asking what's possible, I made it so that you can all see what is possible through the course of me upgrading my laptop, I was able to understand this thing inside and out. All of these upgrades should be theoretically possible for the Inspiron 1720 aside from the LCD/Display types, from what I remember I don't know if the 1720 has a WUXGA available or not, it should have the WSXGA+ available regardless.

    Also, just a reminder, that most of these hardware components can be substituted into a Dell Vostro 1500, Dell Vostro 1700, with respect to their model. For instance, the optical drives aren't going to get any bigger or smaller with any of these models, nor will the RAM. I know that the RAM on the 1520/1720 can be upgraded to 6GB, but I haven't owned a Vostro to confirm this on the 1500/1700. But everything else should theoretically work properly, as both of these laptops were made with same motherboards with the BIOS being the only difference.
     
  2. Commander Wolf

    Commander Wolf can i haz broadwell? Super Moderator

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    >>> T5200, T5300, T5500, T5600, T7200, T7400, T7600

    These are Socket M processors for use with the 945 chipset. They won't work with a 1520/1500.
     
  3. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    Oh wow, updating now, thanks for clearing it up
     
  4. Tsunade_Hime

    Tsunade_Hime such bacon. wow Super Moderator

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    Just to add my .02

    Any 800 FSB Core 2 Duo will work. I'm pretty sure you could swap in Merom 2M based Pentium Dual cores, Celeron dual cores (not that you'd want to).

    If you have the Nvidia 8400M GS, the 8600M GT is a straight drop in upgrade. No need to flash the vBIOS or anything like that, it is a Dell proprietary unit. G84M/G86M cores are going to all fail, but the Vostro 1500/Inspiron 1520 have a removable graphics card module, so that shouldn't be a major concern. Intel GMA3100 owners will have to buy a new motherboard + Nvidia GPU module to get discreet graphics or use ExpressCard and do external GPU or eGPU.

    X7800/X7900 are Merom 65 nm Core 2 Extreme's and run much hotter than X9000 (which can be had for under 200 dollars). Also the TJmax is 5C lower (100 vs 105) for the X7x00 vs X9000, respectively.
     
  5. MasterSgt

    MasterSgt Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hi
    I'm running on a Dell Inspiron 1520 that I have had for about 5-6 years

    Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU T8300 @2.4 GHz 2.39GHz/ 2.99 GB RAM/ OS Win XP SP3/Mobile Intel(R) 965 Express Chipset Family/Conexant HDA D330 MDC V.92 Modem/ Broadcom 440x 10/100 Integrated Controller/ Dell Wireless 1395 WLAN Mini-Card/

    I keep getting a Blue Screen with the error message

    BAD_POOL_CALLER
    error code
    0x000000C2

    Does anyone have any idea's on how I can fix this. I have done all I know how.
    I have re-installed OS by removing partition and installing
    I have reinstalled all my drivers including BIOS

    If anyone know how to fix this please help me out here...
    (P.S. apparently my system can't play Minecraft which sucks cause I wanted to)
     
  6. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    I think this was a compatibility issue with the .NET Framework Update and Platform Update thing a while back, which they fixed for Windows Vista (SP2) & Windows 7, make sure you have all Windows Updates and if you continue to get these errors it's not your fault, it's because you have an outdated OS.

    However, I didn't have this problem on Vista or 7, so you may just want to think about updating to either OS, I would say go for 7, I don't think you should have a problem at all then. You can also find all the drivers you need here as well.
     
  7. MasterSgt

    MasterSgt Notebook Enthusiast

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    thanks for the help.
    here is something though lol
    turned on computer today got critical message alert from dell support center
    says that it is having trouble detecting my modular bay.
     
  8. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    What kind of drive do you have in your optical bay? As in what company was it manufactured by? You can find this out by accessing "Device Manager" and then by expanding the bracket that says "CD/DVD Drive." If you cannot turn on your machine at all because of this error then I would flip over the Dell Inspiron 1520 and unscrew the one hinge holding the optical drive in the bay and when you pull it out. Follow these directions and you'll be able to identify what company made the drive (e.g. Toshiba and etc.)

    The error you got above and the one prior to this one gives me the impression that you may have a faulty optical drive all together, but no worries, you can get a replacement for a good deal on eBay.
     
  9. MasterSgt

    MasterSgt Notebook Enthusiast

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    Wdc Wd3200bevt-75a23t0

    mistake.... i looked at disk drives on device list... will need to open since it is not detected
     
  10. MasterSgt

    MasterSgt Notebook Enthusiast

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    GSA-T21N 12.7 tray IDE DVD+/-RW
     
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