K53TA.. The best deal ever... could be!

Discussion in 'Asus' started by UnXpectedError, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. ryanlecocq

    ryanlecocq Notebook Consultant

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    You can test your system with a system monitoring app to see if it is the CPU or GPU that is limiting the games or programs you are using. If the CPU usage is near 100%, then you would not get better performance.
     
  2. ryanlecocq

    ryanlecocq Notebook Consultant

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    I won't let this thread die. I actually have to use my (2nd) k53ta as my primary laptop for a spell, as it's the best of available options. I still have a desktop and a PS4 Pro, so it's not like I'm limited to the games of 2011-13, but I still want to try to do a little gaming on this thing.

    The good news is that even if I have zero luck running any current games, it streams from the above mentioned devices just fine. I was playing FFXV on it last night and the quality and responsiveness were excellent. I'll be posting some reports once I finish installing my steam games. I'm hopeful for GTAV, MGSV and Vermintide. Dark Souls 3 I'm betting no way.
     
  3. ryanlecocq

    ryanlecocq Notebook Consultant

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    K53TA December 2016 Update (as all-inclusive as possible):

    Since this thread is finally dead besides me, I'm going to drop what will probably be one of the last posts. Just to give anyone looking for info on this laptop the most current info on the last page of the thread.

    Windows 10: Although my initial clean install of Windows 10 64 was successful and bug-free, I eventually dumped it to return to Windows 7. I was able to find working drivers for everything and got the 15.7.1 graphics drivers to successfully install with a little effort.
    The problem was with those drivers mostly. The 15.7.1 AMD official drivers have great gaming performance in Win10, but terrible performance everywhere else. The general usage is slow, movie playback is choppy, even my boot time was slower. Then to compound this, I started to have issues with unsuccessful Windows updates messing things up. The problem didn't appear to have anything to do with my power or internet connection, it was simply issues with this particular system and Windows 10. Many older systems do, but this became so annoying combined with the slow performance that I gave up on it.
    If you can live with glitchy and slow graphics outside of games and botched updates making random parts of Windows stop working until you reboot, this laptop can run Windows 10.
    It should also be noted that you are pretty much forced to run the 15.7.1 drivers, as older ones give you black screens at boot and newer ones are even glitchier with this GPU.

    Best Graphics Driver: Still 14.4, modded or stock. 15.7.1 actually has slightly better performance for newer games, but freezes on Windows 7/8/8.1 and has the above issues on 10. 15.7 and newer betas seem to be designed to make old laptops work with Win10 and they have varying success with different cards.
    The big bummer about this is that the 14.4 drivers are ancient. They still run a lot of games well, but some games newer than the drivers that would run on this laptop (like GTA5), have glitches or will not start. Some people have had luck with putting the .dll files for newer drivers in the game's data directory to create an intercept, this only caused the game to crash mid-benchmark when I tried with GTA.
    So the short version is that the 14.4 AMD drivers are the most optimized ever released for this GPU (6650m). The only way you can play GTA5 on this laptop is to install Win10 and put up with the slow performance outside of games. GTA5 will run at 30-45fps at the lowest settings and 720p.

    Can you finally get any benefit out of hybrid graphics?
    No. That is a definitive no. As in I upgraded my APU to an A8 to make the GPUs closer, then downclocked the dedicated card until they were as close to parity as possible. Then I optimized the driver settings for the best frame pacing and used the best profiles for each game. I tested with World of Warcraft, Alien Isolation and Metal Gear Solid V. All games that do actually get frame boosts with Dual Graphics.
    There was still micro-stuttering that to me made it unplayable. It was vastly improved over drivers 5 years ago, but it was still not worth using in my opinion and I would imagine that of most gamers used to "normal" frame pacing.

    Can it run any newer games (2015-16)? Some. MGSV was very playable at low settings. Overwatch is playable at low settings. Many games that aren't new, but are updated with newer tech, like WoW, LoL or Starcraft II all run well at medium-low settings. GTAV is playable with extreme difficulty (see above).
    Doom(2016), Dark Souls 3, The Witcher 3, Battlefield 1 and Rise of the Tomb Raider are all completely unplayable, even at the lowest settings and resolution. Some of them will not even start or will kick you out of the game for bad performance.
    So YMMV, but most games that are too much newer than the latest working drivers (14.4) will start to give you issues.

    What are the best possible speeds out of a quad-core Llano APU?
    The highest speed a good chip will maintain during benchmarking is just above 3GHz for two of the cores, and any p0 state slightly lower than that for the other two. This is only possible with modified cooling and a chip that overclocks AND undervolts really well. I've tested this across 5 APUs now on 2 K53TAs and one DV6 and this is the final verdict. Some chips can occasionally hit a little bit higher speed on one core, but roughly 3GHz seems to be the hardware limit created by the design. With a solid undervolt I can maintain these speeds in most benchmarks on several different chips.
    While gaming you will almost never get a core above 2.4GHz on a lower end chip to 2.6 on the higher A8s and MXs. The A8 3500M I'm using currently is the best overclock/undervolt APU I've used yet and is able to game with one core at 3GHz and the rest at 2.6. None of the other 4 Llanos I have used have ever hit this speed, regardless of cooling. I am using Gelid GC-Extreme thermal compound and a slightly modified heat rail and vents.
    The raw output of the APU seems to top out at about 2350MHz per core. Although you can overclock above this, the hyperthread link of the APU appears to be full, so performance is capped. True across all Llano x4 models as they are all basically the same cores.


    With that I'm closing the book on this laptop. Please don't send me messages asking how to upgrade CPU or install drivers. There are links and guides for all of that early in the thread and in the owner's lounge. Be sure to read instructions before using k10stat or MSI Afterburner to overclock your CPU and GPU.
     
  4. OdU_Geek

    OdU_Geek Notebook Consultant

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    I'm using this as my primary computer, too, for awhile. Currently stuck on Linux with OK drivers but no hybrid graphics until I figure out how to reinstall Windows without buying a new license. My recovery partition got hosed, lol. I'm able to play World of Warcraft with Wine and Rocket League on the lowest settings.

    I've also found an awesome program for OC/UV of AMD CPUs on Linux: TurionPowerControl

    For anyone else looking for additional, possibly outdated info, here is atoneapone's info page: https://slickdeals.net/f/3183764-as...win-7-prem-64-bit-450?p=41552600#post41552600

    Thank you for your contributions to this thread, Ryan. Good luck and godspeed, remaining K53TAs! Long may you live...
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2016
  5. ryanlecocq

    ryanlecocq Notebook Consultant

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    You should be able to install windows off an OEM disc image. It has to be an OEM version (best to search this to make sure you get the right version, but OEM doesn't matter which manufacturer, just means for pre-built systems). Then instead of asking you for a key, it just checks the manufacturer database for your serial number and if Asus sold that laptop, you are activated. It's just a different kind of Windows install you need for pre-built laptops.
     
  6. 7race

    7race Newbie

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    Mine's still chugging along as well after all these years.

    Windows 10 works well. I don't really game on it, so I can't talk much to that, but overall performance is as snappy as can be. I don't get video playback issues like you seem to be. Display drivers are those issued by Windows Update. Everything is Windows standard-issue really, except for SMBus and USB Filter drivers as part of the 15.7.1 chipset.
    The only thing that's annoying is having to decide whether to disable ULPS or not, as "on" means horrendously long boot and wake times, but "off" means ~20% more power consumption in idle (i. e., more importantly, ~20% less battery life). If only there was a way to at least force the idle memory clock down - it sits at max. clock of 667MHz constantly...

    Windows Update is a little bugged in that it will sometimes just not stop searching. Even when triggered from the device manager.

    HWMonitor and CPU-Z don't work for some reason. They freeze at launch and can't even be forced shut through the task manager.

    What are the average idle temps for yours? I'm kind of tempted to take it apart can clean the fan, but I'm not sure whether it's worth going through with that hassle; I'm idling at around 35-40 or 45-50 °C right now - a few degrees increased idle temp surely due to the not-ULPS'd 6650M.

    Edit: Took it apart and cleaned the fan; 5-10 °C improvement.

    Strangely, when you wake the laptop from sleep, the GPU does clock down to 100MHz Mem clock. But when you just boot it up, it stays at 667MHz. What's that about?
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2016
  7. mirh

    mirh Newbie

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    Just for the records, all the "by Bothanspy" [broken] links there, point to this thread.

    And fiy every laptop has windows license sticker glued on the bottom.
     
  8. OdU_Geek

    OdU_Geek Notebook Consultant

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    Lol, yes, but I can't use the OEM key with regular Windows 7 installation media.
     
  9. mirh

    mirh Newbie

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    Yes you can. Microsoft issues the code and microsoft checks it. There's nothing else that matters.
     
  10. logast

    logast Newbie

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    Hello, If someone need
    Fan boost to 100%
    Info:
    1. install driver in folder launch_common_exe
    2. restart pc
    3.start fancontroller.exe and press full on

    Bios 214 - Sata3 + SG + unlock all bios(all amibcp configs in bios)
    Do not modify "PX Dynamic mode switch"
    PS. If you still changed something, but the laptop does not turn on, then you will have to disassemble it and remove the bios battery for 60+ seconds.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2017
    haymanali2006 likes this.
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