Dell XPS 8700Just received after old 435MT was just having too many issues. More to come.- 4th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-4770 processor (8M Cache, up to 3.9 GHz)- 16GB Dual Channel DDR3 1600MHz - 4 DIMMs- 1TB 7200 RPM SATA Hard Drive 6.0 Gb/s- NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 645 1.0GB GDDR5- Windows 8.1 with some 7 Modeling etc
Upgrading to a Solid State Drive this month. To be honest, the speed difference from my optimized 435MT running in RAID 0 with 6GB of ram is not as much as I had imagined.
Dell Studio XPS 435MT
In early 1/09, I ordered a refurbished Studio XPS 435MT for an amazing deal, this configured with i7 920, 1.28TB via 2x640GB HD in RAID 0, 6GB 1066Mhz DDR3 RAM in Tri-Channel, and the ATI 4850 512MB. For the longest while, I was not 100% on this selection as I waffled between the 435MT and a DIY i7 build alternative. The final solution was hinging on ultimate performance and the machine's potential noise and configuration issues. At the least, twin hard drives, another external eSATA for backup, and the ATI 4850 would seem to put the minimal 350w PSU at the edge, especially since ATI recommends 450W. Alas, the PSU worries were for naught, as the system was performing with no issues on 150W with normal activity, only hitting over 285 when pushed (I don't game, however).
The real rub was the case fan "leaf blower" mode issues, as the system struggled to stay cool with the insanely hot ATI 4850 video card mixed with the hotter Core i7 with the mATX case. Ultimately, this system might have been better served with a front case fan or perhaps a larger case. Still, with Vista 64 (and I was not a Vista fan at all till SP1 and 3Gb shackle was left behind), this system has not missed a beat, seemingly on for 95% of the time since arrival. At the insane price, still much lower than you can find a comparably equiped i7 option, you couldn't come close to building anything near its spec. And the bios/driver updates mentioned below have gone a long way in quelling preliminary complaints.My i7 920 idle core temps at my system's current 2793Mhz are @ 44-47C with it moving to the low 50s when pushed hard, totally respectable given the loaded case with 4850. The working GPU temp is 68-70C, up a bit since the warmer weather.No matter what computer you own, and especially if you own the 435MT or 435T, the following links and free programs are excellent for monitoring your system performance, including cooling, obviously an important point considering the high temps from the Core i7 and ATI Radeon 4850. See relevant 435MT/435T links.
Dell Studio XPS 435MT Info
435MT Drivers & Downloads
435MT RAM Install Info
Dell Studio XPS 435T Info
435T Drivers & Downloads
435T RAM Install Info
Excellent System Performance Monitor Software
CPU-Z (Total System Info Report)
GPU-Z (Graphics Card Total Report)
Real Temp (CPU Report and Core Temp Monitioring)
Core Temp (CPU Report and Core Temp Monitoring)
Fan RPM Reading & Control Software
Speedfan (Fan RPM reading plus User Control)
Prime95 (Ultimate CPU/Memory test for your i7 System)
IMPORTANT STUDIO XPS 435MT INFORMATION
Remove Fan Ramp-Up "leaf blower" mode with 1.1.2 BIOS UpdateIf you are experiencing the random "leaf blower" case fan outbursts, download the 1.0.12 BIOS update(no longer available - use 1.1.2 version above). This 3-13-09 Bios update stops the random ramp-up of the 92mm case fan, one of the main complaints with this machine. While the 70CFM fan still exhibits more drone than average, more common with a fan that moves this much air, the update is a tremendous help in making the 435MT a much quieter system. Other more silent case fans that move less air have resulted in increased CPU core temps. You can help some of the drone by moving to soft mounts to isolate the fan body from case. Others have reported lower temps and noise with the 2000rpm, 58CFM Scythe 100mm Fan.
1333Mhz RAM will ONLY run at 1066Mhz for i7 920 and 940 CPUIf you upgrade to aftermarket 1333Mhz DDR3 RAM, and have the i7 920 & 940 CPU, your new ram will ONLY run at 1066Mhz. Dell does not tell you this in the 435MT manual. The only way to achieve the 1333Mhz rating, is to move to the uber expensive 965 CPU. The only other option is for Dell to release a BIOS update that will allow the user to change the multiplier to enable the RAM to reach spec at 1333Mhz.. This is unlikely unless many owners push for this as Dell marketing rules leave the advanced BIOS settings to their higher end game machines. There is now a rumor that Dell might supply this very BIOS update. Indeed, there have been two separate reports that DO specify that Dell is working on a bios update that will allow this to happen, all very good news for the 435MT or 435T owner with the 920/940 CPU. I'll believe it when I see it. As of the 4-28-09 1.1.0 update, this is evidently still not addressed.See the two banks of 6 DIMMS represented below. Making sure the same spec/type RAM populates the corresponding bank is important in achieving proper Tri-Channel configuration.