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Feedback to Clevo R&D Team: What's missing or broken in your Skylake laptops?

Discussion in 'Sager and Clevo' started by Mr. Fox, Oct 29, 2016.

  1. Prostar Computer

    Prostar Computer Company Representative

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    Can't you just see Robert Loggia getting down on that thing? :biglaugh:
     
  2. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    Welcome our new typing team to the company (2:20):

     
  3. ole!!!

    ole!!! Notebook Prophet

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    this is directly from clevo tw. whats broken in the laptop would be to add an additional 4th fan to the laptop, basically 2nd fan for cpu heatsink.
     
    Stress Tech likes this.
  4. Tanner@XoticPC

    Tanner@XoticPC Company Representative

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    Finally, a notebook that can fit enough cooling hardware and battery to satisfy the needs of power users.
     
    ole!!!, Timbabs123, temp00876 and 2 others like this.
  5. ole!!!

    ole!!! Notebook Prophet

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    plot twist, turns out that display isnt 4k
     
    Georgel and TBoneSan like this.
  6. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    Looks like a projector in the booth, likely 720p given the age of it :p
     
    ole!!! likes this.
  7. Tanner@XoticPC

    Tanner@XoticPC Company Representative

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    You're right, its 64K
     
  8. Dennismungai

    Dennismungai Notebook Consultant

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    Mine has to hinge on one primary complaint: BIOS updates.

    I'll provide an example: I own a variant based on the Clevo P751DM2-G (Branded as the origin Eon 15-X), and almost one year after launch, no new BIOS update is available.
    Yet, we have other vendors with similar offerings who have been gracious enough to offer BIOS updates for their SKUs, such as Obsidian PC.

    Clevo should enforce a Quality Control scheme where all their vendor partners are compelled to avail BIOS updates to their users , including the EC and TPM firmware.

    Three pending issues I have open at the moment, all related to the stock BIOS that came with this machine are as follows:

    1. Intel's Speed Shift (SST) for both SKL and KBL is not yet available with the stock BIOS,meaning potential performance losses.

    2. The Skylake and Kabylake hyperthreading bug remains unpatched.

    3. The TPM by Infineon Technologies still runs an older and vulnerable firmware version, which means that the vendor (aka Origin PC) is compelled to release a firmware update to address this, as directed by the security advisory here.

    And to top that up, the issue with the VT-d IOMMU grouping issue (that nukes the internal SATA controller when Thunderbolt docks are plugged in unless overriden by the Linux ACS patch, as described here) still persists.

    As an Origin PC client, this may be the first and last purchase I make from these guys. We shouldn't have to beg for baseline BIOS updates that actually fix security and usability issues.
    For instance, due to the unpatched Infineon TPM firmware issue (which you can confirm by running tpm.msc on Windows 10 Pro), I miss out on both:

    1. Full drive encryption with Bitlocker.

    2. And what sucks the most, TCG Opal 2.0 Self Encrypting Drive (SED) support. My workflow relies heavily on sedutil and a PBA to unlock my self encrypted drives prior to launching the bootloader, and with an untrusted TPM, I cannot use this feature.

    3. Sensible power adapter configuration: Why Origin PC does not include the 330W power adapter as a configuration option for the P751DM2-G variant (Origin Eon 15-X) is baffling. This is a unit, that on stock, will gladly draw approximately 270W from the wall socket under full simultaneous GPU and CPU load. I'm glad to see other vendors (Eurocom, Sager and OBSIDIAN PC) include this sensible option, where others (including System76) fail to do so. Why the 330W power adapter is not the default power supply with an unlocked Kabylake processor and a desktop-grade GPU is an oversight that has serious performance implications for the user down the road, which calls on stronger quality control checks for all suppliers.

    Here's where I will issue this public warning (for future reference), on a matter related to a measurement commonly referred to as the TDP. The TDP value you see plastered on Intel's ARK for specific processors is NOT a measure of power draw on the processor under any circumstances, but rather, a hint for the system manufacturer that directs the amount of cooling needed to dissipate heat at a rate that will keep the specific processor within operating temperatures under the worst case scenario. What you should be more concerned about is the actual power draw, measurable through a wall socket meter, and not on utilities running on the host operating system (which is why Intel's RAPL and GPU power draw estimates from NVAPI and AMD's ADL is not considered reliable, but as rough estimates, at best) and this will often dictate actual performance under most workloads.

    Remember that under full load, a processor such as the unlocked 7700k and similar mobile processors with unlocked multipliers will draw as much power as is needed to sustain their clock speeds, as as a rule, will often exceed the rated TDP especially when overclocked (also configurable via the power limit setting in the BIOS). So if you have one of these so-called "extreme" gaming laptops with a hint of an unlocked processor underneath, WATCH your power supply's limit closely. It's most likely to be your limiting factor. Quoting some worth while examples:

    (a). The same chassis exhibits premature throttling (amperage-based) on the stock 230W adapter, as observed on the Schenker XMG (2017, 15" SKU) an issue that some reviewers have documented on, in notes or in passing: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Schenker-XMG-U507-Clevo-P751DM2-G-Laptop-Review.209180.0.html

    (b). The infamous MSI GT80 Titan that CANNOT make use of the dual PSU or the 6920HQ chips well with SLI 980M and SLI 120W 980 solutions except for the purpose of benchmarks. The machine is designed to use a 330W power brick and draw any extra power from the battery, and will run down the battery to 0% after a couple hours of gaming (happens at stock clocks with 120W 980 SLI) at which point the machine will throttle components to make the 330W brick suffice. While attaching a second 330W brick is physically possible, the machine's EC is set to ignore the extra power and use from the battery, and an EC hack is required to make it work properly. This is not acceptable.

    I believe, firmly so, that someone who considers a Clevo based laptop that will sink in thousands of dollars does so as an investment, and as such, expects uncompromising feature support as on the date of purchase towards the longevity of the notebook. We applaud these vendors (such as Sager, Eurocom, OBSIDIAN PC, etc) that take this seriously and are prompt with firmware and software updates, but this kind of lapse with other vendors should be monitored, closely.

    And another issue, which affects Linux users: Hardware enablement patches are welcome, particulary around issues such as Audio device setup (hands up if your headset jack doesn't work on Linux!) , and to that front, we applaud the likes of System76 and Tuxedo PC. Keep it up!

    Edit: After I received my 330W power adapter (Thanks Eurocom), I did re-run some benchmarks and testing confirms that this is the appropriate PSU.

    See this:

    1. Initial result: http://www.userbenchmark.com/UserRun/5587729

    2. Follow up: http://www.userbenchmark.com/UserRun/5952654

    The follow up is with the new 330W PSU.

    And yes, 3DMark is seeing some substantial gains.

    Sky Diver went up by 2000 points
    With the 230W brick https://www.3dmark.com/sd/4861157
    And with the 330W brick: https://www.3dmark.com/3dm/23514783

    Further followup: With @Prema 's help, I was able to get his awesome BIOS flashed on the P751DM2-G and all throttling issues are gone. The AVX offset feature is very useful for Kabylake. And of great satisfaction is the fact that all the issues I had with the stock BIOS, even on Linux, are gone. No more ACPI errors on Linux, etc.

    What baffles me is that with such awesome people like Prema around, his BIOS isn't a default on all Clevo systems. Seriously, hire this guy and partner with him as many have done. This is the type of contributor that Clevo's R&D team should back up and work with, and maybe even give him a full time position without the corporate nonsense tied around gag orders and NDAs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017
  9. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    Have you emailed Origin your concerns?
     
  10. Dennismungai

    Dennismungai Notebook Consultant

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    I have, over several threads. They seem to be taking them seriously, but as for the BIOS updates, not much on that front.
     
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