Adam Hosein
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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Most thermal pads can be cut into shape and use (as far as I know). Once the thermal pads have a high thermal conductivity, it should replace the stock pads.

Now I am glad we started talking about this topic, because this got me thinking that our crashing issues might be due to an overheating VRM. Thee are 5 white thermal pad, the one that is on the pipes of the heat sink I believe is the thermal pad for the VRM of the GPU.

I think I will buy some thermal pads and replace all of them and hope to god it fixes our issues.

By the mean time if you are looking for some pads to buy, here is an amazon link (high thermal conductivity is good, so look for pads with high thermal conductivity):

https://www.amazon.com/ARCTIC-Thermal-Pad-1-0-Conductivity/dp/B00UYTTDO6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1469...

FYI, don't cheap out on the thermal pads and before you ask, thermal compound isn't needed with thermal pads, but can be done (just a little though).

Kerio_Orisa
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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I have narrowed down the annoying fan noise problem. It is something to do with hard disk. My XP215 (L502X) came with a 750 GB WD 7200rpm hard disk. I created an image of my system on a portable drive, and restored the image on a 500 GB Hitachi 7200rpm, and well, the fan noises were gone. I don’t know how and why, but the fan behaves much better. To make sure that it is something to do with hard disk, I used the same system image to restore Windows on another 500GB hard disk (5400rpm), and the fan noises were back on that one. So, the only hard disk (among the three that I have) without fan noises is the Hitachi 500gb 7200rpm. I can’t explain why is it so. It is not a Windows issue, since I used the same system image, and did not re-installed a fresh Windows 7. Maybe some sort of software incompatibility with some hard disks, or something else. 

Another strange thing is that I thought the laptop would remain cooler on a slower 5200rpm hard disk, as the cpu would have to waite for processing due to slower read I/O from a slower hard disk,, but it apprently gets much warmer on a 5200rpm hard disk (compared to both 7200rpm hard disks). 
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Igor_Magalhaes
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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Hello, Adam!

Did you change the thermal pads? Worked?

Thanks,

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Adam Hosein
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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No I have not changed the thermal pads, can't find any locally available in my country. However, I am going for a whole new approach. I am going to be using an external video card solution using the EXP GDC Beast external graphics card dock and a GTX 750ti. It has been done with very great results. For more on this check these links:

eGPU on Dell XPS L501x - www.youtube.com/watch

eGPU Purchase - www.gearbest.com/.../pp_229101.html

I would be getting my dock within 2 weeks, I will post my results here.

I know it is not the solution we were looking for, but at this point the internal GPU seems to be fully shut, so we might as well use the other best option.

As I said I will be posting some results in 2 weeks, if I do not, then someone please remind me Smiley Happy

Adam Hosein
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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No, I have not changed the thermal pads in my laptop as of now, I can't find any locally available thermal pads to be bought. However, I am changing my objective with this laptop, instead of trying to fix what seems to not be able to fix, I am going to do an external GPU solution using the EXP GDC Beast external GPU dock for laptops. I am going to be using a desktop GPU with my laptop, It has been done with great results so this is my future endeavor for my laptop.

Links that will be useful:

eGPU on Dell xps L501X - www.youtube.com/watch

eGPU dock - www.gearbest.com/.../pp_229101.html

I will be getting my dock within 2 weeks, when I get it I will post my results.

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Adam Hosein
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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No, I have not changed the thermal pads in my laptop as of now, I can't find any locally available thermal pads to be bought. However, I am changing my objective with this laptop, instead of trying to fix what seems to not be able to fix, I am going to do an external GPU solution using the EXP GDC Beast external GPU dock for laptops. I am going to be using a desktop GPU with my laptop, It has been done with great results so this is my future endeavor for my laptop.

I cannot post links in my responds, but do a youtube search for:

EXP GDC BEAST Gaming Laptop (eGPU Set-up)

and

a google search for:

EXP GDC Beast Laptop GPU dock

I will be getting my dock within 2 weeks, when I get it I will post my results.

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Adam Hosein
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RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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So guys I have gotten my egpu dock and I am currently using an old geforce 9500gt and it is working great thus far. The only problem is that dell has whitelisted the wifi port that has to be used with this dock, but I will explain everything with this post.

So you have received your dock, PSU, GPU and want to hook it up, well follow this guide:

-Start your laptop as normal without hooking up anything or removing anything.

-Download DDU (Display Driver Uninstaller) and run it (it would want to run in safe mode, do so); [this would remove any drivers and files of the gtx540m drivers properly, but don't remove anything to do with intel graphics].

-Restart your laptop twice (just a save measure).

-Once you have restarted and in windows, put the laptop to sleep (yes to sleep).

-Whilst the laptop is sleeping, flip it over, undo the cover to reveal the ram and wifi module.

-Remove the wifi module (yes this is how it is done to bypass dell's whitelist).

-Hook up the egpu mpcie cable to the wifi port and screw it down.

-Don't rewake the laptop just yet.

-Hook up the rest of the egpu components; [the GPU to the dock, the mpcie cable to the dock, the power supply to the dock (see manual for this, and REMEMBER, DON'T ATTACH THE 4 PIN CONNECTOR TO THE DOCK POWER CABLE THAT IS TOGETHER WITH THE 20 PIN ATX CABLE, USE ANOTHER 4 PIN CONNECTOR, THIS WILL CAUSE A SHORT CIRCUIT AND BURN YOUR PSU).

-Once everything is connected awake the laptop, the laptop screen would power on as normal.

-Go to device manager and look under display adapters, you should see some generic microsoft driver with a yellow exclamation mark, right click and update (you would need to have an ethernet cable plugged in).

-Once it finish updates (takes anywhere from 5 minutes to 20) it would prompt to restart, DON'T`!!!

-Put the laptop to sleep and take out the mpcie cable and put back the wifi module, wake the laptop and then restart.

-Once the laptop has restarted, wait a few minutes for it to properly start and then go to device manager

-Under device manager, look under "Network adapters" and disable everything under it (except for "Intel(R) Centrino(R) Wireless-N"

-After, put the laptop to sleep.

-Once again, replace the wifi module with the mpcie cable and then wake the laptop.

- You would notice nothing happens, this is normal.

-Go to device manager and look under display adapters, you would notice your GPU is there but with a yellow exclamation mark, the error code you would see is error 12, this is normal and a good sign.

-While in the Device manager, click on "view" and "device by connection".

-Expand "Microsoft ACPI x64-based PC" and nested under that would be "Microsoft ACPI-Complient System" expand that as well; nested under this is "PCI Express Root Complex" expand that.

-Look for anything pertaining to the old gt540m and disable it, also look for anything pertaining to bluetooth and disable it, but not wireless-N. [to note, the stuff for the gt 540m would be nested under its own thing, disable that whole tree that nests the gt 540m].

-Once this is done, close device manager, put the laptop to sleep and replace the mcpie cable with the wifi module and restart.

-After restart, wait a few minutes and put it to sleep.

-Replace the wifi module with the mpcie cable and wake the laptop; do not do anything at this point, wait a few seconds and your secondary monitor would start to show a display.

-At this point you have setup your external GPU.

Things to note:

In order to go between your GPU and your wifi module, you must put your laptop to sleep and switch them, (that's why anything pertaining to wireless-N was not disabled). Trying to start the laptop with the GPU already attached would not work, everything would be blank but yet your laptop would seem like it wants to do something. The error 12 code is pertaining to not enough resources for the new PCIe component to be ran.

If you are looking for a simpler means of this external GPU setup, there is a software called Nando Setup 1.3 that simplifies the setup without need to disable anything and for the constant sleep to swap GPU with wifi module, you can also boot with the GPU already attached using the software, but it costs US$25.

If you are using a recent card after 2010 and is nvidia, you can use the laptop screen instead of an external display; however, I would recommend using one during the setup procedure. BUT, using the internal monitor would reduce the performance of the GPU to about 30% less, this is because the mcpie lane is being over saturated.

If you guys got any questions, feel free to ask, I will try my best to answer.

RE: XPS-15 L502X Well-Known Problems

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Thanks for this post, i have had the same issue on on my l502x. But could not find a sollution to this problem. I will try your suggestion later this day

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