*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. cookinwitdiesel

    cookinwitdiesel Retired Bencher

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    The power draw from the fans is negligible. Does it work with the top open? Size could be an issue if the card is not seated well when all closed up.
     
  2. rickdeckard

    rickdeckard Notebook Consultant

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    No difference with the top open but it can't close any way, card is FAR too large as you suspected but I've reseated it many times to be sure.
     
  3. DrewN

    DrewN Notebook Evangelist

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  4. rickdeckard

    rickdeckard Notebook Consultant

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    Oh man, I bet you've nailed it and I suspected all along it was something Asus did with this card, I'm sure that's the issue here. I'll know for certain when I try it with a spare PSU next week but I expect nothing will change. All these little quirks make the PC hobby interesting but also pretty darn frustrating as now instead of a decently-powered AGA for my son to game with I'll likely end up selling an effectively brand new card on ebay, what a shame.
     
  5. Zelb

    Zelb Newbie

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    Hi all,
    I have an alienware 17r3 (i7 6820HK and 980m) and after 3 years+ of using it i decided to get an alienware amplifier since they were on sale. Incidentally Nvida released their rtx super cards so I got the 2070 super FE as well. After installing the amplifier and reinstalling the Nvidia driver (only the latest one supports the card), everything was recognised and I noticed the card was running very quiet. I ran a few benchmarks and as the load increased the card remained quiet up until around 70C where the fans started spinning at full speed. They would be stuck at full speed from that point on even at idle so I tried restarting, reconnecting the amplifier, reseating the card, unplugging the psu and reconnecting. The fans would go back at low rpm seemingly at random at some point. When they were stuck I would restart, put some load into the card to hopefully get the rpm back to low at idle.

    MSI afterburner fan control did not work when the fans were at full speed. When they dropped at low rpm, I was able to set the default fan curve for the card and now the fans respond according to temperature. So after all this I'm not sure if the card is faulty, if it is a driver problem, if it is related to the alienware amplifier or the fact I use it with the laptop screen and I don't have a monitor connected. Has anyone seen this behaviour before? Should I stick with the card now with the custom fan curve or return it?

    I have modified the curve a bit to not allow the card to reach 70C otherwise the fans would go at full speed again.
    I have the latest available Bios in the 17r3 and latest command center/amplifier drivers.
     
  6. Kevg13

    Kevg13 Newbie

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    Hello,

    I also just bought an AGA and a RTX 2070 Super from Nvidia's Store.
    My PC is an Alienware 17 R2 and for some weird reason, I cannot see the Graphics card on device manager nor I am able of unplugging the amplifiervia "FN+F1". I am starting to get out of ideas of why it's not working. I've tried the desktop drivers and even the notebook's RTX 2070 to no avail.
    How did you installed yours for it to be seen on your system?

    Thanks in advance!
    K
     
  7. Zelb

    Zelb Newbie

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    I updated the Bios and the alienware command center to the latest versions from the Dell product support page first, for my specific laptop. The command center also includes the graphics amplifier driver.
    Then switched off the laptop, connected the amplifier with the card installed and booted up. Then checked the command center -> Alien Adrenaline ->Graphics amplifier if the card was detected. It would say External GPU ON - Internal GPU off - Integrated GPU ON. This would mean the amplifier works fine.

    Device manager would show 2 unrecognised devices (with an exclamation mark), one was the gpu, the other i believe was the pcie interface it is connected to. Even though I was already using Geforce Experience and had the latest drivers, I downloaded and installed them again. I did a manual driver search on nvidia's website for Geforce RTX 20 series Notebook drivers, selected 2070 (even though i don't think it matters) and it was the DCH driver. There is a field you can select that. After you click on search it should be the first result "Geforce Game ready driver 431.36 (9th of July). This is the only driver available for now that supports this card. Downloaded and reinstalled on top of my existing version. After that I restarted and device manager would show the correct card.

    I then tried to redeem the game codes through Geforce experience and it would say I am not eligible.... after spending some time with nvidia support on a road to nowhere, I shut down, disconnected the amplifier and booted up with the internal gpu. Then shut down again, reconnected the amplifier, opened geforce experience and then I could redeem the codes. After that i ran into the fan problem so watch out of that!
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2019
  8. rinneh

    rinneh Notebook Prophet

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    The USB part is separated in the cable, its not assurance it works. The only test is to try another GPU. THe cable is even so finicky, that a small piece of dust can force the card into 1x instead 4x mode.
     
  9. Zelb

    Zelb Newbie

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    Some benchmark results with the rtx 2070 super in the alienware amplifier and the 17r3.
    There is a huge jump in performance compared to the 980m as expected, even though I am using the 4k laptop screen and not an external monitor.

    Firestrike:
    i7 6820HK Stock and 980m - Score 8027 (http://www.3dmark.com/fs/19772640)
    i7 6820HK Stock and 2070 Super - Score 13807 (http://www.3dmark.com/fs/19816500)
    i7 6820HK @3.8 and 2070 Super - Score 14764 (http://www.3dmark.com/fs/19838689)

    Timespy:
    i7 6820HK Stock and 980m - Score 2943 (http://www.3dmark.com/spy/7642093)
    i7 6820HK Stock and 2070 Super - Score 7769 (http://www.3dmark.com/spy/7734836)
    i7 6820HK @3.8 and 2070 Super - Score 7986 (http://www.3dmark.com/spy/7747186)

    Port Royal
    i7 6820HK Stock and 2070 Super - Score 5460 (http://www.3dmark.com/pr/117603)

    Timespy Extreme
    i7 6820HK Stock and 2070 Super - Score 3697 (http://www.3dmark.com/spy/7758965)

    Firestrike Ultra
    i7 6820HK Stock and 2070 Super - Score 5547 (http://www.3dmark.com/fs/19848226)

    In practical terms from the games I tried all with the laptop screen, the expectation is at resolution 2048x1152 most games should play at max settings.
    Assassin's creed Odyssey at the same resolution and 100% resolution modifier mostly high settings to get 60fps average in the benchmark.
    It is very evident that my cpu is the weak link here.

    4k can be done on well optimised games like Diablo III and Starcraft II, I guess it all depends on what games you play.
     
    etern4l likes this.
  10. rickdeckard

    rickdeckard Notebook Consultant

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    Good info on the cable and I was pretty well certain at this point that testing a new PSU would be pointless but hey, the TX750M arrived today so I gave it a whirl.
    Long story short, it worked but with a bit of a twist. First off, I simply swapped the PSU's, booted it all up and immediately had output from the AGA (the part where I always stalled before). Notably, the behavior is identical in that the fans spin up to low RPM but the RGB lights never come on using either PSU. Next, installed the latest 431.36 drivers (no Geforce Experience required), all 3 GPU's now show as operational in device manager and I can play 3D games to my heart's content (looping the Atomic Heart RTX demo presently for a little burn-in).
    The twist is that after everything was up and running, I powered it all down and put the OEM PSU back in and sure enough all continued to work perfectly so make of all this what you will. I will tell everyone this though, put a GPU in your amp OTHER than the Asus ROG-STRIX-RTX2070-A8G-GAMING...make sure you get a card that follows the Nvidia reference or FE design so you know it will work.
     
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