Dell XPS 15 (Skylake) 9550 Owner's Lounge

Discussion in 'Dell XPS and Studio XPS' started by T2050, Oct 30, 2015.

  1. Jean-Cyril

    Jean-Cyril Notebook Enthusiast

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    A better cable can NOT fix a hardware limitation from 9550. Native HDMI port is limit to 4k/30Hz.
    But adapter thunderbolt usb type-c to HDMI with 4k@60Hz support will work at 4k@60Hz on a 4k@60Hz tv.

    You will see lag if you work on 4k@30Hz but if it is for movies, you'll not. Movies are very often in 24fps.

    So, buy a 15$ cable to be sure.
     
  2. Drew1

    Drew1 Notebook Deity

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    When you say lag if you work on 4k@30hz, you mean doing pretty much anything on my laptop except watching movies? You mean lagging on youtube as well?


    Okay but do you know which cable I need specifically though? So the one I posted earlier doesn't work?
     
  3. Jean-Cyril

    Jean-Cyril Notebook Enthusiast

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    yes everything will lag except movies. But some movies and a lot of youtube video are in 48fps or 50fps or 60fps so they will not be smooth at 30Hz.

    This one : https://www.amazon.com.mx/gp/product/B06Y6448WB/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ??
    the price is no sense ! very very very too high.

    just buy an adapter thunderbolt usb type-c to hdmi 4k@60Hz for 15$ and a regular hdmi male male cable for 15$
     
  4. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    Dell updated the BIOS for XPS 9550 to 1.14.0

    ***Note the plundervolt patch will disable undervolting; not sure if that could be undone.

    Fixes & Enhancements

    - Firmware updates to address the Intel Security Advisories INTEL-SA-00289 (CVE-2019-11157) and INTEL-SA-00317 (CVE-2019-14607).
    - Fixed the issue where the SMM Security Mitigation gets disabled while loading BIOS defaults.
    Version
    Version 1.14.0, 1.14.0
    Category
    BIOS
    Release date
    06 Oct 2020
    Last Updated
    06 Oct 2020
     
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  5. Splitframe

    Splitframe Notebook Guru

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    Hi,

    my 9550 just died from one day to the next.
    The last thing it did yesterday was installing a Windows 10 Update.
    Now it has the exact same symptoms as here: https://www.dell.com/community/XPS/Dell-XPS-15-9550-Black-Screen-on-Boot/td-p/7189829

    In short: Turning it "on" just leaves you with a no backlight black screen, no fans spinning.
    After some while, or if you press power again, the fans spin up and it turns completely off.
    SSD, CPU, GPU and Chipset do get warm, no output via HDMI whatsoever.

    I took the notebook apart and unplugged the BIOS Battery, but that did not help.
    It was working without issue the day before. Replacement motherboards are sadly
    sparse and it's in otherwise really good condition so I'd really like to repair it.

    Any hint would be really appreciated. Maybe it doesn't boot with no/empty CMOS Battery?

    Edit: After more digging it seems to be nearly unfixable. Some people suggest to heatgun GPU and CPU. Really disappointing.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2020
  6. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    Not sure. Do you remember what BIOS you were running and what Windoze update - so we can steer clear!

    Some quick ideas. @GoNz0 might have some better advice.

    ** In the NorthbridgeFix YouTube video, he is looking at a short on the VRM related to the CPU. He wrote that was a bad power module (mosfet) by Alpha Omega Semi (labeled PU1202 on the motherboard) and replacing it did not help. My 9550 has a slightly different p/n zs019qi-tasx13 (I think these are Dell proprietary numbers but might just be relabeled ala Apple). His bad mosfet might not have been the root problem but without the schematic it is tough to be 100% sure. There were some XPS schematics floating around the internet but I don't think for the 9550.

    Anyways you might replicate his test of the caps around those mosfets with a basic multimeter to see if you have a similar hardware problem (I think you should have the power off and the battery disconnected). If you have those VRM caps shorted, I suspect only a hardware fix would work.

    ** Are you getting any error codes flashing under the trackpad?

    ** Did the CTRL + D testing work?

    ** Try removing the RAM and reseating it. Try swapping the modules. Try with just module A in the first slot. Try with just module B in the first slot. Do NOT touch the delicate pins in the RAM slots. You should NEVER touch the gold contacts on your RAM modules (contamination is a popular failure mode in "server farms"); you might be able to clean them with iso alcohol (preferably 99%+). Can you borrow some known good ram modules (preferably that worked with the 9550 as some don't lol).

    ** Try removing the m2 drive and gently reseating it. Check the SSD gold contacts are immaculate. You must use a JIS screwhead or you risk stripping the head and will be in a world of trouble.

    ** The screen cable came loose for a few of us; but the HDMI out worked so I don't think that is your issue.

    ** This firmware thread might have some ideas if they replicate your problem and assuming your hardware is not shot
    http://forum.notebookreview.com/thr...-rom-hdr-extract-reflash-black-screen.810845/
     
  7. Chang_loo

    Chang_loo Notebook Guru

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    I had a very similar issue about a year ago and I posted earlier in this thread.

    I sended the XPS 15 to a company that does repair on chiplevel base. They could repair it and I have been told that the BIOS was corrupt. Anyhow, since I am living in Thailand and the Dell was repaired in Germany, my XPS could not make it back home due to corona. I do not know if the BIOS chip was just externaly flashed or if the chip was replaced (soldered).

    Good luck!
     
  8. Splitframe

    Splitframe Notebook Guru

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    Error Codes: No
    CTRL+D: Yes
    RAM: Tried everything
    SSD: Yes
    Screen Cable: Yes (and no HMDI Output)
    BIOS: I was on 1.13.1

    I will try the BIOS recovery flash procedure that you linked.

    Thank you very much for your extensive answer, I really hope I can bring it back and I will report back when I got something... or nothing.
    Also thank you to Chang_loo, this makes me hopeful the BIOS recovery might work.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2020
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  9. pressing

    pressing Notebook Deity

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    @Splitframe - I hope you get the 9550 running.

    It might be easiest at this stage to check for shorts with a multimeter as done in the video above. If the caps related to the 3 mosfets test without shorts, that gives you some level of confidence that those are not your issue. Failed caps probably won't magically recover after a BIOS recovery hehehe.

    I am running that 1.13.1 BIOS. 1.13.1 is the latest that does not block undervolting as far as I can see. I might consider flashing an older BIOS but that video and some forum posts with the failure were before the release of 1.13.1. And there is always a small risk of bricking a device with BIOS flashing. Sometimes, devices can be unbricked. There is a potentially "safer" BIOS update method but nothing is guaranteed.

    EDIT - what Windows version (and update) were you running at failure?
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2020
  10. codester

    codester Notebook Consultant

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    So the last thing you did was install a Windows 10 Update... I wonder if Windows Update also updated the BIOS and potentially corrupted it? I was thinking this sounded like a corrupt BIOS as well.

    There is a setting in the BIOS called "Enable UEFI Capsule Firmware Updates". If this is enabled, it exposes the BIOS to Windows / Device Manager, and Windows Update can download and install BIOS updates if it detects there's a newer version. I don't like the idea of Windows automatically updating the BIOS for me, so I have disabled it. Would you happen to know if you had this setting enabled or disabled?

    FWIW, I am running the latest version 1.14.0 from Dell with no issues.
     
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