*OFFICIAL* Alienware "Graphics Amplifier" Owner's Lounge and Benchmark Thread (All 13, 15 and 17)

Discussion in '2015+ Alienware 13 / 15 / 17' started by Mr. Fox, Dec 10, 2014.

  1. etern4l

    etern4l Notebook Evangelist

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    Deleted double post.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  2. etern4l

    etern4l Notebook Evangelist

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    Have you managed to resolve this? Thinking of getting a GA for my 15 R2,, but Dell only claims compatibility with 15 R3 in the website...
     
  3. rinneh

    rinneh Notebook Virtuoso

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    I run an aw15r2 and it works without issues.
     
  4. jace888au

    jace888au Notebook Geek

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    I realised on my new AW13r3, everytime I switch between inbuilt and AGA, I have to reinstall the 388.71 Nvidia drivers otherwise the 1080Ti in the AGA isn't detected and Nvidia Control Panel doesn't show up. Any ideas? I thought this issue was resolved ages ago.
     
  5. Ihtfp06

    Ihtfp06 Notebook Enthusiast

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    After you connect the amp and power up, try doing a restart. On the first boot mine is stuck with the intel 630, restarting resolves this for me without having to do the driver reinstall.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  6. gschneider

    gschneider Notebook Evangelist

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    Your wife got you all that for your Birthday????????!!!!! How do I get mine to do that?
     
    Jayce 71 and jace888au like this.
  7. 95TA

    95TA Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hey guys, a little background and then a few quick questions...

    First off, I just purchased a AW 17 R3. It was listed as new and everything about it seems like it is except for the fact the guy selling it replaced the MVNe SSD with a Toshiba SATA model and the 1TB Hitachi 7200rpm HDD with a 5400rpm WD Blue. Other than that it is a i7-6700HQ with a 4GB GTX980m, 16gb RAM and a FHD (1080p) display. Great laptop. I may end up swapping out the FHD display for a 4k UHD so I can do some drone video editing in the field.

    As fate would have it, I lucked out and found a Graphics Amplifier locally for a deal (guys wife bought it thinking it was audio equipment, which it obviously wasn't), so once I got the new 17R3 up and running I went and grabbed a GTX980 out of one of my kids rigs and popped it into the AGA to do some testing.

    Overall it runs well, best 3dMark Time Spy test at defaults without the AGA was 3052, best with the AGA and GTX980 was 4385 or thereabouts (this is all with 388.71 nVidia drivers). This was the best I could do benchmark-wise and it was both the first runs. The OS setup was an original 102xx Win10 Home that I did the in-place upgrade to 10699 to. I then installed all the drivers, things ran well. I did notice that when I press Fn + F1 nothing happens. If I press the button on the AGA cable, I shutdown (as per the ACC AGA screen). I am on BIOS 1.3.12 (latest).

    Me being somewhat concerned that I didn't do a fresh install of the OS on a laptop I bought from someone else might end up leave malware on it, I decided to play around a little driver/OS wise before I did a reset. I recovered back to 102xx OS, installed all the drivers there, then upgraded to 10699. My scores dropped to a best of 980m @ 3022 and 980 @ 4298. Now one thing I noticed is the system runs better with the power options at balanced as I get higher scores on both runs like that. On High Performance I get about a 30-40 score drop on both runs. I do notice that the AGA screen under ACC is not showing GPU statuses, it basically is acting like I don't have (or ever had) an AGA plugged in with just links to dell.

    So, I take that as a sign that I should stop messing around and just set the damn thing up correctly. So I kick off a OS Reset. It fully reinstalls, I log in, I start installing all the latest drivers (basically latest Dell stuff for everything except for RST, used the latest Intel download of 15.9.x.x, and the Killer NIC/Wifi/Bluetooth, as I used the latest from the manufacturer website for those).

    I did install the AGA driver before the ACC and I also made sure this time to update the Thunderbolt firmware and the TI Power Thunderbolt firmware as well, along with the latest Intel Dynamic Platform stuff.

    Nice part is I have the gpu status available under the AGA section of ACC again. Everything runs smooth. But, my scores are still on the lower side compared to when I did my first runs. I can hit about 3020 on the 980m and about 4265 on the 980 in the AGA.

    Now besides the small performance hit, I still get nothing happening when I press Fn+F1 at anytime (either at the desktop or even with the ACC up). Did they remove the Fn+F1 functionality in the latest BIOS or drivers/app?

    Lastly, I did some stress testing. With Prime95 the CPU gets to about 78-80c. With Furmark on the 980m I get about 64c at most. With both Prime95 and with Furmark together I get a max around 90c on the CPU and 71c on the GPU. I notice that the CPU at around the time I get to 90c, XTU shows that the processor starts power throttling and drops speed from 3.1Ghz down to around 2.8-2.9Ghz. Once I kill off Furmark temps drop back down to around 80-81c with Prime95 still humming away.

    Can I assume my thermal past is in good shape with temps like that?

    Is there any way to really increase my 3dMark scores back to where they were maxed out on the first runs?

    I do have Performance mode in the BIOS set to enabled, just not on the fans (too loud). Is this the best all-around configuration?

    Lastly, did Dell shut-off Fn+F1 to initiate shutdown to disconnect the AGA?

    Thanks guys, did some searching and really didn't find much on all this.
     
  8. deftrance

    deftrance Notebook Enthusiast

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    Have been having some issues recently... Boot loops on the Alienware Logo, which I can only resolve by unplugging the AGA for 5-10 seconds, plugging it back in and then booting up once more. And today... two of my USB ports on the AGA kept malfunctioning (mouse and keyboard) - the wonderful DONG of Windows recognizing a new USB device or disconnecting one. I am thinking it's time to replace the PSU with a Corsair. Thoughts?
     
  9. jace888au

    jace888au Notebook Geek

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    First year after marriage. Let's see how we go next year :)

    Back on topic it all works nicely now but I can't get both internal 1060 and external 1080Ti to work simultaneously like I could on my AW15R3.
     
  10. Djangi

    Djangi Notebook Consultant

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    Hi Zim415,
    Last week I purchaded an AGA and a Asus gtx1080 land basicly made the same modifications to make the card fit and to keep it cool.
    Thanks for your detailed post, it helped me a lot.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
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