That is good news. The cooler is just a generally good investment because the airflow coming from a replaceable product like that cuts down on the amount of work your laptop's fans have to do to keep your hardware cool. It extends the life of your very non-replaceable laptop fans by letting them not have to work as hard.
You know, another test that occurred to me after you said that is to try playing a game that allows you to disable hardware physics. Two I can think of off the top of my head are Mirror's Edge and F.E.A.R. If you have one of these and can crank all the other settings to max, you might be able to find out if Phys-X is what's giving you fits. Black screen when disabled means Phys-X isn't the problem. While enabled...well, then you'll discover a black screen during something like glass breaking, wind effects, or lots of bodies getting tossed ragdoll-style.
And...maybe someone can help me remember this...there's a way to display your SLI on screen while it's running. The last time I used it, it showed a kind of green band on the screen so you could gauge its performance. If you have SLI enabled, then see if you can choose this option ("Show SLI Visualizations", I believe it is). If you see it start to vary dramatically, either rocketing upwards or dropping down, before a black screen, then that might also help you pinpoint it to SLI.
I wonder if you could disable SLI and still telll Phys-X to use GPU #2? Wouldn't that be interesting...
Ever since I turned off SLI on my wife's laptop and let Phys-X be "automatic", she's not had any problems. Much as I enjoy SLI, I'm starting to come to the conclusion that it's not really necessary for good gaming--it's like a slight visual improvement that isn't always worth the destabilization risk on a product like a laptop. My 8700Ms have always been happy, but my 8800GTXs hated it, her 280Ms seem to do better without it, etc.
Alienware Area-51 ALX: Intel Core i7 980X, 12GB (3x4) G.Skill RAM, 2 x nVidia GeForce 480s in SLI, 1.8TB RAID0 (WD Caviar Black@ SATAII/64MB cache) on 48" Toshiba REGZA 1080p screen.
When I enable SLI and use GPU 2 to PhysX, the problem is even worse... I tried before somehow.
I think I would keep this setting until it gets worse. Thank you for your help.
My laptop screen still happen to black out randomly while watching video. While the screen hang, the whole unit hang including the keyboard. However, sound of the video still can be heard.
I am experiencing the exact same issue it sounds like. I have had a horrible time contacting Dell and Alienware.
Nvidia Geforce 260m
64bit windows 7
Dual Core 2.8Ghz
I tried recommended drivers and went through several installations of windows 7 and factory settings and proper drivers and they caused many programs to run poorly, updated my video driver and removed PhysX, and now everything is running smoothly, minus the black screen of death which happens whenever I am browsing the internet in a chrome window (havent tested other browsers yet) or during programs that utilize the video card.
Have we found any magical cure for this rage inducing issue? It is quite frustrating to have to restart my computer when I can hear the audio, but am locked out of doing anything. This issue has been happening across driver versions, and I have had RAM replaced along with the fan for the video card. Issue has persisted. I have tried doing several of the things through this thread including a cooling pad.
Any other tips from the community or dell? Side question, why would Dell/Alienware not respond to emails? I include the service tag number and they don't respond. Even when I emailed the agent that was helping me directly. I have checked spam filters, they have made no attempt to contact me. I have sent multiple copies so I am sure one has reached them.
Finally some people with the exact same issue as me. I got
Nvidia Geforce 260m (and the 9400m ofcourse)
BIOS Ver A07 1.000PARTTBLZ
64bit windows 7
Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU P8600 @ 2.40GHz (2 CPUs), ~2.4GHz
The sad thing was that my computer worked out "fine" but then I found out "hey, I am supposed to have SLI with 260m drivers, why can't I find them?". So when I got the drivers installed (correctly?) the 260m drivers would dissappear after some time. Yet now I got it fixed after reinstalling the bios and activating them inside the bios setup since they were somehow automaticly disabled there.
Now after getting them running I can run games on much higher graphics and such but I get the same problem as you guys. My screen turns black every now and then, I can hear audio and some times see the cursor. Often happens when gaming but also happend randomly while looking around at youtube for an example. And yeah, I noticed that it gets very heated at the back when I got SLI running.
Yet I have tried to clean the fans, but I haven't bought a cooler since it does not seem to be the main problem. Still, I will get one sooner or later anyhow.
But I would LOVE a fix for this black screen problem cuz I have found NONE. Else I will send it in to reperation but I doubt they will find a stable fix for it. I notice alot of people got this problem, but why is it so hard to find a good fix for it? It would suck to game with my 9400m card, force me to always have graphics on minimum in most games.
Please don't let this thread die 😧
now im feeling im not alone. This happened to my brand new m18x . it was black out and come along with very noise beeps. That i couldnt start up the window. The engine sounds were running normal, keyboard lights were on. If you're hoping for a fiix come to my thread en.community.dell.com/.../19403837.aspx
m18x? why didn't I even know that existed? And I who think my m17x is huge :S. Very well, noisy beeps? It actually happend some times for me when playing league of legends while using the 9400 card. It lasted for just a second and then the game kept running. Yet once I got a major lagg with extreme noise which gave me the black screen. Still I could hear the sound and see my cursor after it was over.
Same problem here, I just received my new Alienware M17XR3 laptop yesterday and I unfortunately already got a lot of these black screen freezes that are occurring randomly when I'm simply browsing the web or playing a game. Nothing can be done except hard rebooting the system...
Processor : Intel Core i7 Processor 2760QM (2.40Ghz, 6MB, 4C) 1
Display : 17.3in WideHD+ (1600 x 900) WLED LCD 1
Memory : 6144MB (1x2048 + 1x4096) 1333MHz DDR3 Dual Channel 1
Graphics : 1.5GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560M
It looks like it's a known problem with Alienware Laptops:
I looked on all of the above threads and no solution seem to work for me. Did anybody found a fix for this black screen problem ? Is it a hardware problem with a defectuous Nvidia GTX 560M video card ?
What is your advice for me since I just received the laptop yesterday ? Just get a complete refund and order a new one or giving it to repair ?
Thanks you very much !
I haven't found a fix for it yet. Gotta run my laptop on my intergrated card to keep it stable D:. Will try to reinstall windows and all the drivers and make sure I do everything in the correct order. Try out some different video drivers and see which works best. Will come back with results.
return it ... buy orginpc(ORIGINAL ALIENWARE) ,sager,asus, emachines has better build quality nowadays .. and its a low end acer LOL
Its Your call if you are set on alienware look @ video bios updates ect... dell isnt the only one with this issue if the name of a system dosent matter to you then look elsewere .. we can only give our opinion from our experiences and trust me if ends up like my M17X R1 .. and 3 R2's i wonder why i bought a DELL 17R a year later
Alienware X51 R3
M18X R2 🙂 (again)
Inspiron 11 Flip , Studio 1535 ,Inspiron 6400
M18X R2, M17X R2 ,M17X R1, XPS M1730 & M1530, Inspiron 17R
I answer questions here, but