Need help about buying an M6800

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by toto29620, Oct 20, 2018.

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  1. toto29620

    toto29620 Notebook Consultant

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    Hi !

    I have an old alienware M17X R2 (the one from 2011) and it is starting to show its age.

    I have fried two HD7970M in it, the motherboard has some trouble too boot in Windows 10, some ding here an here ...

    It has been a great laptop for years, my best laptop ever in fact.

    I am starting too look for something newer, maybe a bit less shiny and less red, i will need to bring it too work some time so WAY less noisy, something that's not in your face you know. For those who does'nt know the R2, it can cool down a lot of heat but you clearly need a headset for gaming, forget about hearing footnoise in PUBG for exemple.

    I was thinking about the precision M6800. I love the look and it seems to have decent power, a good haswell cpu, lot of ram, mxm 3.0b graphic card, enought hdd slot for everything.

    I need to know :

    - can i overclock the cpu by a good amout ? i have pushed my 920 xm for years without trouble, i want to do the same with the next one

    - can i upgrade the grphics card for a non-professionnel one ? Like an HD7970m if the firepro failed or an maxwell card like an 970m. Is it as easy as it was with my alienware ?

    - is it noisy ? can it run very quietly for things like playing a film or something ?

    I dont really like the style of the newer one, i was thinking about buying an alienware M18X R2 but the Ivy bridge CPU is kinda old now, same problem as my M17X.
     
  2. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Virtuoso

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    1. The Precision BIOS does not allow overclocking the CPU (beyond the regular max turbo speed)... Even if you have an "unlocked" i7 extreme CPU. I'm not aware of any workarounds for this.

    2. You can install a non-pro GPU. NVIDIA Maxwell GPUs work (970M, 980M). Pascal GPUs have issues but we have reports of the Quadro P5000 (on par with GeForce 1070) working with a specific vBIOS. If you swapped the GPU in your Alienware, you're probably used to having to modify the driver INF file in order to get it to load, same case here.

    I'm not sure about the GPU heatsink situation on the M6800... M6700 has a different heatsink for AMD and NVIDIA GPUs.

    Note, early M6800 use LVDS but later ones use eDP, and getting an eDP model would put you in the best position for a GPU upgrade (beyond Maxwell). Some newer GPUs do not support LVDS.

    3. It can run quiet for light work or playing a video. Even under load it is way quieter than some other laptops I have heard.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2018
  3. toto29620

    toto29620 Notebook Consultant

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    Hi,

    Thank you !

    For the overclocking i have found this thread : http://forum.notebookreview.com/threads/throttlestop-overclocking-dell-precision-m6800.812606/
    So basically pretty much the same as my m17x if i understand it correctly.

    I don't need to overclock it right now but i like the fact that i can push it a bit more in the next years, i like to keep my computer for some time so it need to be kinda futur proof.

    For the GPU that's a great news ! I have the same problem with the LVDS not being supported by maxwell and so i am stuck with amd's card, is there a way to know the type of screen connector ? I mean does the motherboard have an LVDS and eDP port and depending of the screen you use one or the other or is there two different model of motherboard ? The gtx 10*0 series are a bit too expensive for me right now anyway, in 3 to 4 years maybe but i might get an other laptop at this point so not really too much of a problem i think. And yeah i have modified some nvidia driver before, it's not needed for amd card but i have some friends with gtx680m that needed it.

    I have seen some talk about putting in M6600 fans too, quieter and better cooling apprently.

    I think i will buy one, it really look like it can keep up for some years.
     
  4. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Virtuoso

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    AFAIK it is two different models of motherboard. You have to look up the panel type (hwinfo) and then search online to see what type it is. By the way, LVDS works with Maxwell, I have a Quadro M5000M (similar to GeForce 980M) with LVDS in my M6700. Pascal is the first that doesn't work with LVDS.

    Also, if you have a LVDS system and if you are OK with Optimus / graphics switching turned on, you can install a card that doesn't support LVDS (the Intel GPU will drive the laptop display).
     
  5. toto29620

    toto29620 Notebook Consultant

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    I was planning to get one from ebay, that will be hard to ask them an hwinfos report i guess. I will just take my chance and hope for the best, as you said that's not mandatory for maxwell anyway.

    For the M17X it's quiet an old machine, so it doesn't have optimus, just some pcie line straight from the cpu to mxm ports, no igp. Maxwell doesn't work in it strangely (it does on external screen but not the internal one), it works in the m15x (basically the little brother, everything is the same with just one mxm slot, and some power management issue here and there).
     
  6. z31fanatic

    z31fanatic Notebook Consultant

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    I believe that the ones with the i7-4810MQ and i7-4910MQ have the newer motherboards and are eDP.
     
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