[SUCCESS]Quadro K3100M in Alienware M18xR1

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by GodlikeRU, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. GodlikeRU

    GodlikeRU Notebook Deity

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    I wanted to swap my broken 880M with Quadro K3100M but couldn't find any materials regarding Quadro cards in M18x so I bought the card, did the swap and decided to create a new thread and share my experience so far.

    Quadro K3100M is same factor as 880M, hell even same generation, it's on MXM3 and it's basically GTX 765M with wider memory bus. Card I used was some from Dell business laptop, not really used much and on stock vBIOS. When it arrived I disassembled the laptop and started swapping my GTX with Quadro. Sadly things weren't plug'n'play, Quadro I bought came with very different backplate and I wouldn't be able to tight the screws so I had to do a little mod.

    See the differences in red:
    nv-780m-gpu.png
    GTX 780M

    Nvidia-Quadro-K3100m-4GB-GDDR5-N15E-Q1-A2-2szt.png
    Quadro K3100M

    Backplate (red):

    71C6-Hh0aJL._SX425_.png

    I decided to rip off old backplate from my 880M and swap it. Be warned, it is glued to the card, be extremely careful while taking it off and take your time. Also make sure you also took off black piece of tape that is under the backplate, it separates metal backplate from the card. You have to re-use it on the other card or it will short with metal causing 8 beep. Im not sure if they all come with different bracket, you may get the correct one but I had to do the swap.

    Swapping that bracket was the hardest part, now just put some paste, thermal pads and insert the card like a standard one, go to BIOS and set Video Mode to PEG. After Save & Exit laptop should boot now exclusively on new GPU, if you get beeps then make sure backplate isn't in direct contact with card which causes shorts. Download drivers from Nvidia website, and... just install it. Suprise, you don't have to mod them! Installer does not really give a damn about possible configurations like it does with GTX cards, if it detects Quadro it just goes straight to the installation part.

    After system restart your GPU should be ready to do some work, play some games, run 3dmark or create something in CAD as Quadro it's way faster than comparable GTX in professional solutions. Sadly SLI isn't supported, the connector isn't present on the GPU itself so if you want to use two cards you're out of luck.

    It shouldn't be hard to cool it as it's not really power hungry, my 100W heatsinks are handling it with ease, maximum temperature was 68C under Unigine Heaven and 63C in normal play.

    g2n.png

    Hope this thread helps someone that want to repair their laptop with a small cost, there are a lot of Quadro cards on auctions with low prices as almost nobody wants to buy them. I assume it should also work with M18xR2, not sure about AW18 though.

    Regards,
    Daniel

     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
  2. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    Great info. Thanks for sharing. This is a very affordable way to repair an M18x with dead GPUs. Much better than using Intel HD Graphics.
     
  3. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    Dell should look back what the word " upgradability " really mean ...

    Great job bro ...

    Edited: easiest way is to just change out the X-Bracket
     
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  4. ssj92

    ssj92 Neutron Star

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    Then K5100M should work too which is nice. It's unfortunate @Swick1981 didn't release his untested BIOS that could have brought 980M SLI to the R1. I am still curious if R1 can run 9/10 series in SG Optimus mode lol
     
  5. GodlikeRU

    GodlikeRU Notebook Deity

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    Im not sure as SG didn't work with 880M
     
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  6. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    I hope swick is ok. Last time I talked to him on the phone at the time he was modding the m18x r2 bios, he was sick. Would love to at least see him poking his head in here.
     
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  7. ssj92

    ssj92 Neutron Star

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    That's very interesting! I wonder why that is since it works in PEG.

    Yeah I don't think I've seen him on TI either. Last time I talked to him, he released a updated M18xR1 BIOS but without the experimental mod for 980M SLI support.
     
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  8. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    Like a number of us, he won't have anything to do with TI any more. I spoke to him around 6 weeks ago and he is doing fairly well. Still having some difficult times with various physical ailments, but in good spirits otherwise.

    Not long after he purchased all of my Alienware stuff, he followed in my footsteps and washed his hands of the brand as well. Like most of us, he switched to Clevo and never looked back. To the best of my knowledge, he does not even use or offer customers Dell products in his IT business any more.

    When we recently spoke he was asking me about what was new in laptops, as he was thinking of buying something with RTX 2080 to replace the aging P870DM3 with 7700K and 1080 SLI that he purchased from HIDevolution. I mentioned the Area 51m and we had a chuckle about that. He ordered a new Clevo P870TM with 9900K and RTX 2080 from our friends at HIDevolution.

    I think the M18xR2 that he used for the BIOS mod died of a motherboard failure, got fixed and failed again. The Nebula Red M18xR2 that he bought from me was given to his mother. I am assuming it is still running. I haven't heard otherwise.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
  9. GodlikeRU

    GodlikeRU Notebook Deity

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    Can't really tell why, it just hangs on BIOS screen if SG is activated. 880M is card a lot newer than very old M18xR1, 980M does not even work in it at all.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
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