How to install the 260m GTX into the Area-51 m15x

Discussion in 'Alienware' started by Matrolz, Dec 3, 2009.

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  1. Matrolz

    Matrolz Notebook Guru

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    How to install the 260m GTX into the Area-51 m15x

    [​IMG]


    Hi Guys

    Last week I received my 260m GTX GPU from R&J tech so I were finally able install it into my m15x. There are however a few issues and I’ve solved some of them. So, because I received some PM’s about how I did, this thread is gonna show you how to install the 260m GTX into your area-51 m15x.


    Price
    All in all this cost me around $ 488:
    Thermal module for 8800 GTX - 14.58 Euro ~ $ 22 (incl. shipping) (Brought it from Alienware UK)
    260M GTX $ 415 (excl. shipping)
    4x screws + 4 metal rings as on the last picture(I have no idea what they're called)

    Modifications
    When I received the card from R&J tech it looked like this:

    [​IMG]

    You have to remove the upper-cover gently with a flat screwdriver in the holes marked with red. Then unscrew 3 screws under the aluminium cover and your card will be ready.

    Now for the heatsink. I originally had the 8600M GT in my m15x, which uses another heatsink. Here's the difference:

    [​IMG]

    As you can see the 8600M one is much smaller and won't have enough cooling efficiency.
    At this moment the GPU and the heatsink will fit together, but there will be a gap between the GPU and the cooling paste on the heatsink.
    What I did was shorten the metal marked with green. I drilled them out and then sanded them. They don't have to be absolutely flat, I shortened them about 1/4' of the lenght. Also make sure you mask the purple cooling pads and the cooling paste.

    [​IMG]


    Now you are ready to install the card
    Remove the old card at an angle and put 260M GTX in. To install the card you need 4 screws. The screws from my old graphics card were too wide, so I found some that fitted from an old laptop. Here's how they look:

    [​IMG]

    Put the metal slice on the screw and screw them in. Remember to tight them in this order: 1, 3, 2 and 4.

    Issues I'm still facing!

    1. When I turn on the laptop with the alienhead(the power on button) the screen will not turn on. It wont even show the bios. I have however found a solution that makes the screen work. Turn on the laptop by holding down the right mouse button. This will boot your laptop on the internal GPU. Now shutdown the laptop - holding the power on button while windows is starting works(if you want to save time...). Now, after it is shut down, turn it on as you normally would, with the alienhead. The screen should now turn on properly.
    2. I can't connect any external monitor

    Performance
    My setup is:
    Windows 7 pro 64bit - T9500 2.6 GHz - 2GB DDR2 RAM - 260M GTX.

    The first thing I wanna test is the heat.
    To stress the card I'm using nvidia's GeoForms stresstest which looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    After running this for 25 mins at max settings the GPU should be hot, and the fans sure were pumping.
    Here's the result:

    [​IMG]


    That's it for now. I'm gonna update this if I find any other problems.

    I hope some of you find this useful! Please ask if you have any questions or suggestions :)

    //Matrolz
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  2. Speedy Gonzalez

    Speedy Gonzalez Xtreme Notebook Speeder!

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    nice and congrats ;) sorry i quote and delete your pics it was to big​
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 8, 2015
  3. viking87

    viking87 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Congrats.... looking forward to hearing how you like the new card in your m15x :D I'm thinking about doing this myself. Hope you get the remaining issues ironed out!
     
  4. mr_fro2000

    mr_fro2000 Notebook Consultant

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    congratz! sounds awesome.

    many people have been curious about this so reps for you.
     
  5. nodeffect

    nodeffect Notebook Evangelist

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    great tutorial! this should be pin or saved to some thread...
     
  6. Matrolz

    Matrolz Notebook Guru

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    I'm glad you like it.

    Now, if I could only use this as my English essay for tomorrow, it would be killing two birds with one stone :)
     
  7. viking87

    viking87 Notebook Enthusiast

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    I agree... isn't there a thread that contains all of the useful articles/guides related the the m15x? This should be included as it contains some information specific to the 260m if others don't want to go the 280m route.
     
  8. Matrolz

    Matrolz Notebook Guru

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    --update--

    I currently don't have the 260m gtx installed as I got some bluescreens saying
    *** Hardware Malfunction
    Call your hardware vendor for support
    NMI: Parity check / memory parity Error
    *** The system has halted ***
    I'm trying to narrow down the problem, and it seems to be the 260m card. I guess it's a bad card. Contacting R&J tech atm. :)
     
  9. dwend

    dwend Notebook Evangelist

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    what driver are you using, will it boot to safemode?
     
  10. Matrolz

    Matrolz Notebook Guru

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    186.91 from laptopvideo2go is the only one I can get to work. You mean safemode with the 260m GTX in right? - I think I did that, what are you suggesting?
     
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