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Question about upgrading XPS M1730 from 8700M GT SLI to 8800M GTX SLI


Guest olivehehe_03

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Guest olivehehe_03

Got a question just as the topic says and I figured a few people here may have tried and learned a few useful things :)

First of all, I'm in Australia and Dell don't offer the upgrade themselves here which means I can't get the upgrade from them or a tech out to install it, so instead I'm looking at buying the cards from overseas and installing myself. I've got two youtube video's bookedmarked which tell me how to pull my laptop apart, swap the cards and put it back together and I'm confident enough to do it myself but there something else I'm worried about.

Ages ago before the upgrade was out Dell made a post on their Direct2Dell blog regarding the upgrade saying that there was an issue with their drivers for the 8800M GTX SLI which was causing delays. Basically, Dell Media Direct was interfering which meant it had to be upgraded. To do that, a user had to format their HDD, repartition the drive as the updated version of Media Direct needs more space, installing that and then installing Windows, drivers and everything again. My question is would this incompatibility only occur with the Dell drivers (which as far as a I know at the moment are a 17x.xx series) or would I be safe to use modded drivers from here (I've currently got 179.14 and running Vista 32-bit, just remembered to mention that part) to get around having to reformat everything?

I'm actually willing to reformat everything if I have to, I'm sure people will agree the (supposed) 50% performance increase is more than worth it, but I mostly want to know other people's experiences upgrading the card themselves in case there's something I should know or if it's just a case of swapping the 8700's out and putting the 8800's in. Thanks in advance

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Hi

First you tube videos are great but Dell support actually offer a step by step tech manual for doing any work on it yourself. The 8800GTX is a single board and chip nothing spantastic about that and upgrading it from the 8700GT is great since I never really heard great things about that card whatsoever.

To be honest I would keep moaning to Dell if your under warranty until they upgrade your card under warranty as well to be honest I thing when they supply sub standard equipment they should be prepared to deal with the repercussions. beside if you have extar warranty cover that hardly cosst them anything since its almost like insurance.

I suggest you visit my blog... read down to the relevant post trust me you cant miss it... Click the progress bar on my signature.

Edited by X3lectric
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upgrading to the 8800m will require a whole new motherboard. will also have to pay for two 8800gtx cards, will cost about $1000-1,500 AUD

may pay to sell it and go for the new XPS 17" beginning of next year with the 9800 SLi, and 1033 FSb/ DDR3 ram.

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upgrading to the 8800m will require a whole new motherboard. will also have to pay for two 8800gtx cards, will cost about $1000-1,500 AUD

may pay to sell it and go for the new XPS 17" beginning of next year with the 9800 SLi, and 1033 FSb/ DDR3 ram.

Im sorry but I know the XPSM1730 inside and out and I assure you that you can upgrade processors from any existing to the X9000 and GPU's From 8800GT to 800GTX and the newly introduced 8800GTS, memory up to 8GB with 64bit OS and A09 bios, wifi card and other components without motherboard upgrade. at all.

The motherboard for the M1730 is the same on all machines.

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thats not what i am saying. of course you can change little things in your laptop like CPU and ram.. but if you have an 8700 GT in your XPS 17" and want to go to an 8800m SLi then (as far as i am aware) you do have to change the motherboard.

** going from non SLi to SLi will require a whole new motherboard **

EDIT: This has been confirmed by XPS tech support.

EDIT 2: Well.. interesting. I think he also said that you dont have to change motherboard going from non-SLi to SLi. Its really hard to understand his english.

OliveHEHE- If your system has sli, then you are def. able to upgrade yourself. As far as having one 8700m GT, i could not get a coherent answer out of him.

You will not need to change anything in your sytem (sotware or hardware) to change the GPU. As far as performance the 8800m has double the pipeline (96 - unified shader) and also double the memory bus width (256 Bit) but dont expect double the performance. In saying that you will get significantly improved gaming. If i were you i'd do it.

But doing this modification yourself... - will void your warantee. XPS records will show what your system was sold with, and any modifications will be noted. So doing this yourself wont be noted...

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Guest olivehehe_03
To be honest I would keep moaning to Dell if your under warranty until they upgrade your card under warranty as well to be honest I thing when they supply sub standard equipment they should be prepared to deal with the repercussions. beside if you have extar warranty cover that hardly cosst them anything since its almost like insurance.

Tried this after the whole "anything based on a G84 chipset is faulty" thing, but they said they'll only replace things under warranty with the same part number that came with the laptop to begin with. I'd be tempted to give it another go if I can find a definite source to quote about the cards being faulty to se what they'll do. Also wook, I've got the 8700M GT SLI already, so I do have an SLI card already (albeit an underpowered one)

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erm they use the same socket pci-e the same size gfc card board... I dont really know who on Dell support told you that but well I know better then to trust level 1 support they dont kow the keyboard from the screen. and everything else is the same except the card name and function there is no two cards on the M1730 for SLI its one board exaclty the same size as with all the other ones.,rights down to the pink heat tranfer goop they use, trust me on this All XPS M1730 have only one motherboards now other xps models that a whole different kettle of fish. specially the 1530 with the rubbish integrated gfx the motherboards and the chipsets are all the smae from the low end XPS M1730 to the fully laiden like mine with all bells and whistles well minus the tv card...

Sorry I dont mean to sound like a I know better then you but I know because Ive seen it replaced in fact not very long ago it was this afternoon. And as a matter of just small fact it was my Video card that blew up. I got a chance to see the whole lot.

Edited by X3lectric
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no thats cool. just finished talking to tech. bloody confusing!

oliveHEHE - as far as drivers from our site... Totaly fine! 179.14 is very good, but runs hotter that most. 178.26 is a good all round driver. low temp, good performance and totally stable.

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Tried this after the whole "anything based on a G84 chipset is faulty" thing, but they said they'll only replace things under warranty with the same part number that came with the laptop to begin with. I'd be tempted to give it another go if I can find a definite source to quote about the cards being faulty to se what they'll do. Also wook, I've got the 8700M GT SLI already, so I do have an SLI card already (albeit an underpowered one)

i have been there too. my XPS did the whole underclocking thing. 3 motherboard replacements/ GPU/ CPU heatsink etc. I asked if i could upgrade instead of getting the same part. tech said no thats a different dept. Send it in for an upgrade, pay the money (if you have 1-2 years left on warantee) its too much of a risk with the whole underclocking thing and not having warantee support.

Sorry didnt read the first part. XPS wont upgrade.. Thats rubbish. Do it yourself, save a few hundie and argue your case for warantee suport.

(off topic i traded my XPS in for my current G70. Way better)

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Here let me be more specific in what you need to do, if you guys flinch wiith dell they have you for suckers and your money...

this applies to any country all you need is to be smart abouut it and be prepared to fight until the end. I mean dont be rude but dont give in.

I buy laptops from Dell like sweeties and I had same rubbish last year witha 20 repairs laters M1710 dead laptop with 2 years left on the warranty I just refused to take a replacement after they failed to deliver the replacement after 30 days or what your contract says. I suggest you read it as for what procedure you need to follow to beat any company including Dell at their own game is here on my blog...

Enjoy the reading

BTW I got a M1730 as a replacement for the M1710 but it took me 3 months of speaking to all sorts of people gathering dates and promises and case numbers and failed returned phone calls delays hell I used the lot of the information on a two pages letter.

In sum I followed my own Advice

http://x3webworx3.spaces.live.com/blog/cns...E!368.entry

I know laws may be different on your contract and countries so bear that in mind but guidlines are on the money. but ultimatly a letter to the head office with all the data you collected when manager opens that letter and starts seeing how much stick you got from the suppurt they call you back withing 2 days to resolve the matter.

I been Dealing with Dell for too many years to be stand iddle and let anyone take me for a ride...

Edited by X3lectric
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Guest olivehehe_03
I been Dealing with Dell for too many years to be stand iddle and let anyone take me for a ride...

I know what you mean. Luckily enough I've worked in a Call Center for Telstra Bigpond for a while so I have a reasonable understanding of the whole complaint process (for them at least but I imagine there's not a whole lot of variation elsewhere). Of course I'd rather call/email someone and get a reasonable resolution first go but in a realistic world that's likely not going to happen.

Just curious too, been checking through Dell's terms and conditions to see what they are contractually obligated to do for me (I'm looking here. Found a few interesting things, first of all section 4.1 which covers the 8700M GT's being possibly faulty (check the article here, or google "G84 faulty"). The part which I think they'd catch me on would be 4.2 © and (e) as well as 4.3 (a), basically saying that Nvidia hardware is not their responsibility. Also section 5.2 which says that any replacement parts "shall have substantially the same fittings and at least an equivalent specification to the faulty Products or parts thereof" which could be used to say that they can't use faulty 8700M GT's to replace my current ones.

Pretty much if I'm gonna call Dell to try and get these replaced I'm gonna do it properly and with as much information as possible. And if it helps I've got 350 days left in my warranty which include Complete Cover, Next Busines Day On-Site, Parts Only and XPS 24/7 phone support. Any other advice to try and get me the best result?

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  • 1 month later...
Guest AluminumHaste
I know what you mean. Luckily enough I've worked in a Call Center for Telstra Bigpond for a while so I have a reasonable understanding of the whole complaint process (for them at least but I imagine there's not a whole lot of variation elsewhere). Of course I'd rather call/email someone and get a reasonable resolution first go but in a realistic world that's likely not going to happen.

Just curious too, been checking through Dell's terms and conditions to see what they are contractually obligated to do for me (I'm looking here. Found a few interesting things, first of all section 4.1 which covers the 8700M GT's being possibly faulty (check the article here, or google "G84 faulty"). The part which I think they'd catch me on would be 4.2 © and (e) as well as 4.3 (a), basically saying that Nvidia hardware is not their responsibility. Also section 5.2 which says that any replacement parts "shall have substantially the same fittings and at least an equivalent specification to the faulty Products or parts thereof" which could be used to say that they can't use faulty 8700M GT's to replace my current ones.

Pretty much if I'm gonna call Dell to try and get these replaced I'm gonna do it properly and with as much information as possible. And if it helps I've got 350 days left in my warranty which include Complete Cover, Next Busines Day On-Site, Parts Only and XPS 24/7 phone support. Any other advice to try and get me the best result?

Man ###### Dell Support stop talking to front line monkeys and second line Case Managers, and go directly to Corporate. The numbers on their website, you will get much better support their, just start off angry and get a new laptop. :)

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