Replacing Processor for 1520, Before/After Effects

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Mihael Keehl, Apr 28, 2011.

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  1. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    [​IMG]

    Well, I have been a novice in changing processors so this has been a really interesting process for me overall. I've never done this before but I will however, post my methods and some pictures/screen shots on how I was able to do this. For those that don't know, I've had quite a difficult time acquiring a legitimately fast processor that hasn't arrived DOA, it's happened to me twice with T9500. So you can imagine my surprise when I was able to get the T9300 for $135, brand new and unused.

    Materials Needed:
    (1) CPU Thermal Grease (IC Diamond or SIIG)
    (1) Intel Core 2 Duo T-series P-socket (478-pin) Processor (new, preferably)
    (1) Flat-head screw driver
    (1) Phillips screw driver (magnetized, preferably)
    (1) Wide sheet of anti-static wrap enough to put your screen, keyboard and palmrest
    (1) Heatsink (new)
    (1) McDonalds Snack Wrap and Sweet Tea (highly recommended)

    Getting Started
    • Remove the battery and unplug your laptop
    • Use a flat-head screw driver and pop up the hinge cover
    • Properly dismount the keyboard (Official Dell Instructions)

    Dismount Display Assembly (Official Dell Instructions)
    • Turn laptop around and remove the screws next to the power jack and modem (see picture)
    • Open Wi-Fi Door and disconnect all cables from respective PCIe cards
    • Remove all the screws in the top row (see picture)
    • Turn laptop over, open the display and lift it straight up as it should be unscrewed completely (see picture)
      • Make sure you do this with care when turn laptop over, as it is unscrewed you want to hold the laptop from the base not the screen.
      • Leave a little space to the right, (you may want to put something underneath the laptop to raise it) so you can lift the screen up without getting the antenna wires tangled.
      • Rest the Display Assembly onto the Anti-Static Wrap Sheet (see picture)

    Dismount PalmRest/Touchpad (Official Dell Instructions)
    • Remove all screws on the back except for the one holding the Optical Drive in and the 4 mini-screws holding the HDD (see picture).
    • Flip laptop over and remove four mini (2x3mm) screws to the middle of the hinge cover (see picture).
    • You may have to play with it a little but it should be loose and if you don't have enough anti static paper, like me just flip upside down and leave on your bed (see picture).

    Remove nVIDIA GeForce Video Card & Heatsink (Official Dell Instructions: VC | HS)
    • Loosen the 3-screws holding the VC in and gently pick it up from it's longer end and it'll pop out.
    • Loosen the 4-screws holding the Heatsink over the CPU and it'll pop out (gently play with it if it doesn't).
      [*]Place both the Heatsink and the VC onto the Anti-Static Paper and this is how your laptop should look generally..


    Installing the New CPU
    • Look at the orientation of the CPU, you want to put the new CPU in the same exact manner, detail for detail.
    • Using the flat-head screw driver, turn the nob for the CPU to unlock and while having your Anti-Static Bands, pull out the CPU (it should come straight up).
    • Place old CPU into AS Wrap and correctly align and input new CPU onto it, DO NOT FORCE ..
    • Then apply small amount (1/2 the size of the square) of thermal compound to the square part and gently spread over the square (see picture)..
    • Place heatsink properly and lightly tighten all the screws first and then tighten them all the way..
    • Eat the snack wrap and then put everything back together in reverse order and voila it should work.

    Make sure that you have checked CPU compatibility with your laptop, sometimes some processors will give you errors, if for instance you don't have a proper BIOS update and thus the CPU isn't listed in your BIOS. I've noticed threads where people trying to use T7700's at first were unable to because of the BIOS limitation.

    Notable Differences: Windows Experience Rating (Before | After)
    As you guys can see much of my ratings have improved since last. And you can immediately tell as well, I mean I went from a T5250 (1.50GHz/2MB/667MHz) to a T9300 (2.5 GHz/6MB/800MHz). Most people would say get an SSD because the performance boost you would get is far more but in my case I think going up 1GHz makes much more sense for $135 as opposed to getting a 128GB for $200. Just saying, it's a whopping 67% increasing in performance for me and the boot time is liquid crazy as well. I'll eventually get the Seagate Momentus XT, which would make it even faster, so I'm not discounting anything as of yet.

    And as a final result, when you boot up, just click on Computer and then System Properties and this will pop up. Assuring you that you have the processor you requested for.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Bear123

    Bear123 Notebook Geek

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    Congratulations on upgrading the CPU.
    It feels nice, doesn't it?

    I just recently, less than a moon ago, upgraded from my T9500 to an X9000.
    The original was a T7200.

    The last upgrade was not as 'impressive', even though the clock-stepping has gone from 2,0GHz>2,6GHz>3,2GHz. Clockwise, the stepping has added new 600MHz each time, but the cahce-boost that the T9500 gave compared to the T7200 (6MB vs. 4MB) was earthshattering (not to forget the 45nm vs. 65nm lithography reducing the heat).

    Now, I believe your next step will(?)/should(?) be to undervolt the CPU with the use of Rightmark CPU Clock Utility. This way, you'll be able to use your new sweet fast upgrade with even less power.

    Again, congrats. Always nice to read about people tuning and improving their computers.
     
  3. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    Normally, I was going to dedicate a whole day to just simply underclocking and virtually minimizing the heat being dissappated by my processor, as my previous, 65nm T5250 with working temps not high but definitely not desirable (44*C-55*C), even while undervolted, I would get about 55*C at its maximum multiplier. It was such a drag and I would feel the temperatures become really hot as my laptop would get really hot from the bottom, perhaps because I used it on my bed a lot.

    The T9300 runs beautifully at 28-30*C, just regular work nothing CPU intensive, I haven't really seen it get higher than that. It may have something to do with the IC Diamond Thermal Compound I used, people said that they were able to lower ambient and regular working temperatures severely with that. Not to mention, I removed my older heatsink and replaced it with a new one to go with the newer processor. It could be anything but I think it's a combination of all those factors, generally, seeing temperatures below 30*C is almost unheard of.

    Furthermore, I ended up upgrading to Windows 7, I must admit, I'm thoroughly satisfied with this version of Windows. After I upgraded via clean install and using 64-Bit, I was able to simply notice a smoother feel compared to the Vista SP2 32-Bit (perhaps because I can access all of my RAM). I'm not sure how much I can attribute that to the processor, ram or the software, I mean technically speaking, I went from 2MB to 6MB Cache. Also, I added the Flash Cache Module (2GB), which has proven to be really impressive piece of equipment as well, it could be because of that I'm experiencing such a boost but since I did these upgrades all at once, so it's probably all of them in tandem.

    I just ordered a 4GB card for memory, as I believe the Inspiron 1520 (A09) is able to theoretically handle 6GB of memory (I hope I'm right). Successful or not, I will definitely post a thread about it and the process that led me to that point. I'll be looking to getting either Momentus XT or something along those lines as the HDD/Hybrid that I would like to utilize. I need something right at 500GB or 640GB anything smaller than 500GB would be a waste of money for me.
     
  4. Ring

    Ring Newbie

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    Hey, I have just upgraded mine with a T9500, but CPU-Z, Intel processor ID Utility and Everest all says it's running at 2166Mhz and FSB at 667Mhz instead of 800... did you encounter any problem like this ?
     
  5. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    Hmm...that's strange are you using RightMark?
     
  6. ArkRaven000

    ArkRaven000 Notebook Enthusiast

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    I've been thinking about doing this, same laptop except it has a Intel Pentium 1.46 processor in it. If I got a new heatsink and processor, it would work out the same right? (as long as i don't stab a screwdriver through my hard drive or anything like that)
     
  7. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    I believe you'd have to update your BIOS before you can actually replace the processor. I never had any pentium processors but you may have to check the socket-type, mine was the P-Socket (478-pin), mostly, I was trying to revive some life into my laptop, it was just getting so slow. I'll probably add an SSD before upgrading to a new laptop.
     
  8. Tsunade_Hime

    Tsunade_Hime such bacon. wow

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    1520 has 965GM/PM so it should do all Core 2 Duo with 800 FSB. You shouldn't have to replace the heatsink, should be the same one with IGP or DGPU.
     
  9. ArkRaven000

    ArkRaven000 Notebook Enthusiast

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    I believe I have the latest bios = A09 right?

    @Tsunade_Hime so it really is just a switch job then?
     
  10. Mihael Keehl

    Mihael Keehl Notebook Evangelist

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    Yup, that's one I'm running right now. When you replace the processor make sure you put on just enough thermal transfer compound, as I did up there. Don't overdo it. But good luck to you mate, hopefully you'll be able to pull this one through.

    Just know that, you will be literally breathing new life into your machine when you do so. I replaced the heatsink on mine because it was cheaper bundled deal for when I got the processor (T9300) on eBay.

    And yup, it really is but you have to be careful (use anti-static wrist straps).
     
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