Newbie to the M15X world and Lovin' it so far

Discussion in 'Alienware M15x' started by Guarddog32, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. Guarddog32

    Guarddog32 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hi all, I am not new to the computer world as I have been building, repairing, upgrading and buying brand name computers for years now. I have an alienware desktop, but this laptop was given to me as a gift by my nephew. He bought it brand new in 2011 and used it as his college computer. Now he has passed this baby onto me. Couple of questions and concerns about it. First of all, I have been reading on this forum a bit and also have the same issue with the bottom and sides getting very hot. I have since ordered a cooling fan for the bottom of it and will use that when it comes in. In reading briefly, do I understand right, you can upgrade your video card from the standard 1 gig that comes with it? If that's true, I will be all over that for sure. If that's true, can someone hook me up with a good link showing how to change out he gpu on this. Also, in my computer settings it says I have 16 gigs of ram, where as the owners manual says it only goes up to 8. Which is it and can you put more in than the 16 as long as it is ddr3 and 13333mhz so you wont burn the ram up. Thanks in advance for anyone can help me with these issues, i really appreciate it.

    Rich
     
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  2. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    Max CPU: 920XM/940XM, overclockable with throttlestop. Use liquid ultra metal TIM here
    Max GPU: Nvidia GTX 970M 6GB MXM 3.0B. Use good quality thermal pads and thermal compound (i use arctic 1.0MM pads and MasterGel Maker compound)
    Max RAM: 16GB DDR3-1333
    Check to see if you have the 1600x900P panel or the 1920x1080P Panel (latter is definitely more pleasent, can be overclocked to 120Hz)
    Add the largest capacity SSD you can afford. You can also dump the optical disc drive in favor of another hard drive or SSD in the same location. Speeds are limited to SATA II
    Make sure your wireless card is 3 x 3, such as intel 6300 or AR9380

    Still a capable machine today.
     
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  3. Guarddog32

    Guarddog32 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thank you so much for your info Raidriar, I really appreciate it. Is the cpu and gpu soldered to the motherboard or are they easily removed to be swapped out? Also, what about the heat issue. Just sitting almost idle on my laptop tray and typing to you and the bottom is pretty darn warm.
     
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  4. Arrrrbol

    Arrrrbol Notebook Evangelist

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    The CPU is PGA and the GPU is MXM - both are easily replaced. The heat is always going to be an issue as the chassis is made from aluminium. You don't need to worry about it though, its normal for these machines (my M17X gets toasty as well). A cooling pad will solve the issue.
     
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  5. Guarddog32

    Guarddog32 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thank you Arrrrbol for your response, I appreciate the help for sure. What does it mean when you say the cpu is pga and the gpu is mxm? Now, as far as prices for the better cpu and gpu, where would you recommend me shopping to get the best deals on them? Is it safe to buy used ones like if someone has one for sale on here?
     
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  6. Guarddog32

    Guarddog32 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Also how do I Check to see if I have the 1600x900P panel or the 1920x1080P Panel ?
     
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  7. Arrrrbol

    Arrrrbol Notebook Evangelist

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    PGA is pin grid array - its a type of CPU socket (AMD still use it). MXM means mobile PCI express module.

    They look like this: [​IMG]
    The one on the left is MXM 3.0A, the one on the right is MXM 3.0B. Your laptop has MXM 3.0B along with almost every other gaming laptop which has an upgradeable GPU.

    To check your display right click on the desktop and select screen resolution.
     
  8. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    Note, you can also use mxm 3.0A cards in your computer as well. You can opt to get the 965M MXM 3.0A card, but so little money difference between the 970M, you might as well go for that one.
     
  9. Guarddog32

    Guarddog32 Notebook Enthusiast

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    These seem kind of pricey on Ebay. Do people sell them on this sight for reasonable prices? Also, is there a way to speed up my page loads when using the internet or watching a video on the internet? I have 16 gigs of ram and the load times are not as fast as they should be for the installed ram.
     
  10. Raidriar

    Raidriar Notebook Prophet

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    Load times are not really dependent on your speed as much as they are on your CPU/network card and network connection

    970M pricey card but worth. Cheapest I ever seen was 280$
     
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