Snoopey
1 Copper

XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

Hi all,

I'm having an issue with my new 7390 2-in-1 16GB i7-1065G7.

I bought this laptop specifically because it supports thunderbolt 3, so that I could get a nice 4K portable monitor that would connect with a single cable for power and data.

I ended up getting one of these: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07Q2JJZ9V

The issue is, I cannot for the life of me get the screen to work with this laptop via a direct USB C connection. I have verified the screen works by plugging it into my other half's macbook, which works fine with a single cable. It even works well with my Samsung S9+ via USB C, though does need external power for the screen.

With this laptop though, I can't get any video signal to work directly via USB C. The screen gets recognised as a Generic PnP monitor, but I can't enable any resolution modes. Whenever I try to extend the display or enable the second display I get an error:

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I have a USB C to HDMI adapter that works with the laptop, but unfortunately only supports up to 4K 30Hz or 1080p 60Hz, plus I have to power the screen separately.

Can anyone help me debug? I've updated all drivers and BIOS via SupportAssist and Windows update, and I ran the intel auto updater too.

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9 Replies
losing_my_mind
1 Copper

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

I'm not super-tech savvy so my two cents for what it's worth, but pretty sure you have to have an actual Thunderbolt cable (or adapter) connected to your laptop, not just a USB-C. 

This is the reverse of your issue (where the display is T3), but probably is still relevant...

"Thunderbolt 3 ports are backward compatible with USB-C, meaning one can plug USB-C devices into a Thunderbolt 3 port, but data will transfer at the USB-C speed of 10Gbps. However, the reverse may not be true: If a Thunderbolt 3 device is plugged into a USB-C interface, it might not work properly. For example, if a Thunderbolt 3 display was plugged into a laptop port, the laptop will likely charge but the external display might give a message saying it’s incompatible." <Non-public info removed>

 


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Snoopey
1 Copper

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

The cable came with the screen and works fine with my other half's macbook, and my phone, so I don't think that's the issue.

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Highlighted
Moderator
Moderator

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

Hi,

 

Thank you for contacting Dell Social support team and for sharing a brief description of the issue. I see you have performed almost most of the troubleshooting steps. 

I would like to check to which USB-C port are you connecting the system monitor to. Is it the one on the left corner?

 

Geoffrey

Thanks and Regards,
Geoffrey Rozario
Dell Social Media and Community Professional
Order Status : http://dell.to/1fgKSTr
Download Drivers : http://dell.to/1hcxG98

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Snoopey
1 Copper

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

Hi Geoffrey,

I have tried plugging the screen into both ports, both of which have the same issue, but usually I have been using the right port.

And after the last comment I did try buying an "official" thunderbolt 3 cable, unfortunately this did not work either in either left or right port. https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B076D76DRQ/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_eqWODbZFKN400

 

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Moderator
Moderator

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

Hi,

Thanks for getting back. I see that the system model 7390 has one Type-C DP in port on the left side of the system. This should allow you to connect the system to the external display. 

However, I do not see a type-c port on the right. Are you using an external adapter to connect it with a Type-C port on the Monitor? As even the HDMI port is on the left of the system.

Also, have you tried connecting the type-c port to another external display and check if that works?

Alternatively, have you tried a different adapter to connect the Monitor with the system?

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jphughan
5 Rhenium

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

@losing_my_mind  I would be shocked if that display actually required Thunderbolt rather than regular USB-C.  Native Thunderbolt displays are very rare.  4K 60 Hz is possible over regular USB-C as long as you're not also trying to carry USB 3.x data over that link, and since this display doesn't have any built-in USB 3.0 ports to plug peripherals into, I don't see why it would do that.

@Snoopey  the only thing I can suggest here would be to update your Intel Graphics drivers and system BIOS if you haven't already.  If you've done those, then I suppose there might still be some bug even in the latest versions of those items that would have to be fixed, in which case keep an eye out for updates there, but this setup should absolutely be plug and play.  I have a similar display, namely the ASUS MB16AC, and it works with no fuss at all on my XPS 13 9350, Latitude 7480, and ThinkPad T480.  It's 1080p, but I actually prefer that for a 15" display because several Windows applications still don't work well when displays scaling is enabled, although if your XPS 13 also has a 4K display, then using a secondary 1080p display simultaneously carries its own problems because you'll end up having to run multiple scale factors simultaneously for your different displays, which adds even more complexities on top of scaling in general.

Snoopey
1 Copper

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

@jphughan - Yeah I thought it should all be plug and play, I've updated all drivers including the BIOS and intel display. I even updated the intel display drivers manually to the latest version as they were a newer version that the ones available from dell with no luck.

I specifically bought a 4k screen as I have the 4k version of the 7390 2-in-1 because I was tired of scaling issues across multiple screens, having come from an original Surface Book. So tired of apps (looking at you Outlook) freaking out when dragged across screens, or window sizes becoming tiny whenever I unplugged the second display.

@DELL-Cares - I have the 7390 2-in-1 https://www.dell.com/support/home/uk/en/ukdhs1/product-support/product/xps-13-7390-2-in-1-laptop/ove....

It has 2 thunderbolt 3 ports, one on each side of the laptop. It has no HDMI out.

I've used a USB C to HDMI adapter which worked with the screen, but only at 4K 30Hz and I had to power the screen separately. I've ordered another adapter which supports 4K 60Hz to USB C which will hopefully work.

Still doesn't solve my issue though as I want to use this screen for travel, and it's far more convenient having a simple plug and play solution!

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losing_my_mind
1 Copper

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

I know you wanted to just be able to plug right in, but I ended up getting a Cable Matters dock for mine. I had too much else I needed to plug in and didn't want to bother with figuring out the cable issues. That way everything plugs into the dock and there's just one cable that goes into the laptop. But it was definitely a little pricey. 😞

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jphughan
5 Rhenium

Re: XPS 13 7390 2-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 display issues

@losing_my_mind  the display that the OP is asking about is a 15" display that is USB-powered and meant to be carried around.  The idea is to give you an easy way to have dual displays on the go since you just plug the display into the system and don't even need to connect the display to external power.  A dock isn't really meant to be carried around everywhere, and it would definitely require external power.

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