M.2/NGFF wireless cards in Precision M4X00, M6X00 (my experience with M6700)

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by Aaron44126, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. rhx123

    rhx123 Notebook Guru

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    I've now done the upgrade with my M6700. I have to say, I'm not blown away with the difference. I'm using a Wireless-AC 9260. I find the Wireless-AC 9260 is a fair bit faster when you are close to the AP, but as you get further away, the N6300 Ultimate becomes more reliable speedwise.
    However, the total cost was about £20, and for that I gained Bluetooth, which I am more than happy with.
    My house kills WiFi signals, so in a better environment, it may still be woth the upgrade.

    Side note - I installed my Wireless-AC 9260 in the WWAN slot so I could keep the N6300 too, I had to turn WWAN on in the BIOS for the Wireless-AC 9260 to enable properly.
     
  2. kingofswag187

    kingofswag187 Notebook Deity

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    I have both the 7260AC and 6300AGN, the AC is much faster when right at my access point (300Mbps+) while its close to a tie with the AC again beating the AGN at the end of my house (80-60Mbps vs 60-30Mbps) Either way, its nice to have so I can pass through the AGN to my desktop through ethernet or my various VM's
    I would love to do this mod, but I'm already maxing out my antenna's. Also, I've tried using a eGPU and it just doesn't want to recognize in device manager which is very annoying, it would be a ultimate setup though
     
  3. rhx123

    rhx123 Notebook Guru

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    For me, with the 980M, I really don't think much running over a PCIE 1x connection is going to beat it out all that much. Also back on topic, I was kind of dissapointed the Wireless-AC 9260 doesn't support Hosted Network, which the N6300 does.
     
  4. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    Are you just trying to set up a mobile hotspot off your laptop? I just tried using the Windows 10 hotspot feature and it worked fine (while also connected to my regular wi-fi).
    ...Or something else?
     
  5. DynamiteZerg

    DynamiteZerg Notebook Evangelist

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    All the parts ordered have arrived from China. I will install the 9260 with the adaptor and report back later! :)
     
  6. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    @Aaron44126 , do you need new antenna wires?

    I’m planning to do this to my m18x R2. This laptop has 3 pci-e slot :)
     
  7. kingofswag187

    kingofswag187 Notebook Deity

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    The M18X R2 only has two MPCIE slots and 3 antennas, yes you need adapter wires for it, I'd recommend it in the WWAN slot
     
  8. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    If you're not going to keep your current WLAN card then you can just re-use those antennas, as long as they will reach to wherever you plan to install the new card/adapter. You will need adapters for them (U.FL to MHF4, see first post) which also act as mini-extension cables so that might offer you some flexibility if you're not installing into the same slot.
     
    Rengsey R. H. Jr. likes this.
  9. DynamiteZerg

    DynamiteZerg Notebook Evangelist

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    Apologies for the long delay! I did promised to post my findings earlier but it sort of just ended up in the "will do later pile" for far too long!

    Where I got my stuff:
    1. M.2(NGFF) to Mini PCI-E Adapter Converter for WiFi Module
    2. U.FL female PCB to MHF 4 MHF4 plug male right angle 0.8mm Pigtail Coax cable IPX
    3. Intel 9260NGW 1730Mbps NGFF Dual Band 802.11ac WiFi Bluetooth 5.0 Wireless Card
    As can be seen from the side and rear view pictures, the converter that I used did not have the metal nut at the rear unlike the one chosen by @Aaron44126.

    Pro - Can't damage the motherboard
    Con - Have to be careful when installing the card so as not to accidentally break the tabs used for securing the 9260 to the converter and also the converter to the laptop.

    The pigtail converters I got looks different to what was in the ebay auction but turns out to be better made. It is made such that the rear of the connector is no longer an exposed solder and thus will not cause accidental short circuits.

    Everything works as it should. Tested it out on my old trusty E4310. Range, WiFi power levels and speed is very similar to the 7260AC that is the default WiFi card in the E4310. The test is pretty much limited due to my Asus AC68U router (using AdvancedTomato firmware) and the size of my apartment. This setup provides me the ability to upgrade to newer M.2 WiFi cards as they come along without being restricted to solely the 7260AC.

    I found out recently that the seller of the M.2 to Mini PCI-E Convertor also have an auction selling the convertor with a set of pigtail converters. It works out much cheaper too! However, I am not sure of the quality of his pigtail converters versus what I got separately. See here for the auction.

    Here are the pictures hidden behind spoiler tags so as not to clog the post.

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    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
  10. zogthegreat

    zogthegreat Notebook Guru

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    Really nice work Aaron44126! Sorry that you fried your board, at least replacements are cheap!
     
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