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Inspiron E1505 Video Card Mod


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I have a Dell Inspiron E1505 that I purchased less than 2 years ago and purchased it almost totally decked out. Unfortunately, I didn't know I purchased the laptop at the end of that chassis/chipset design as they switch over to the 965 instead of the 945 chipset. I have always been displeased with the ATI x1400 video card which is a shared 256mb (hypermemory) video card which utilizes your ram for the additional video memory.

Being that I enjoy cracking open electronics and modifying them I under took the task of retrofitting a Dell 8600m gt card. I had to desolder the NIC port on the board as well as the wireless apdapter port on the motherboard and the wireless card attachment on the board. I made a 1/4 inch thick custom copper heatsink that mounts where the stock heatsink went. I had to do a bunch of other tweaks but it looks to be good and you can't tell from the outside that anythings been modded. I will be getting a wirless and ethernet card that slides into the side of the pcmcia slot of my laptop.

Now the problem I can't get my laptop to take nvidia's 8600m gt video drivers. I think this is because my bios doesn't recognize the card. When I enter Dell's bios, it states under video settings (can't modify them)

Video Controller = Unknown

Video Bios Version = .

Video Memory = 256mb

I believe that my bios is reading the card since it picks up that my 8600m gt card is 256mb of video ram.

SO the question is, how can I get my bios to pickup the card. I checked under device manager and it shows my video controller (VGA as having 14mb). Now as far as I know, I thought the 945 chipset that has the pci express video slot didn't have integrated graphics at all. Not to mention my laptop screen does work fine and I can put the resolution up to 1680 x 1050. I ran the vista score test and it gave me a 1 in graphics score so its definitely not working.

In a nut shell, Need to get Dell inspiron E1505 with an ati x1400 card to read a Dell 8600m gt card. I have the latest E1505 bios version which is A17. I was thinking of flashing my motherboard with a inspiron 1520 bios or a XPS M1530 bios, but the chipset is a different family and that could render my motherboard dead.

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