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Thread: Laptop Upgradeability

  1. #1
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    Laptop Upgradeability

    I'm a bit of a novice when it comes to laptops. I'm quite competent at PC building and have built a good number of systems, but never even touched a laptop. I've got a few questions regarding the ability to upgrade them.

    Is it possible to upgrade the CPU?

    RAM is obviously upgradable as are hard drives .. how about graphics cards?


  2. #2
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    • staffsMike's system
      • Motherboard:
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      • e6600
      • Memory:
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    Graphics cards often aren't upgradeable in laptops..they can be welded in. But the cpu's are pretty much as straight forward as a desktop as long as you're willing to void any warranty you may have.

    modern laptops can offer Bluetooth and Wireless upgrades quite simply to

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    Senior Member burble's Avatar
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    CPU's are usually possible, just pull the thing to bits and chuck a new CPU in. Can be a lot of hassle though. Wheter it'll work or not is another question, the BIOS on the laptop may not support the new CPU and you may have cooling issues.

    GPU's though, no, they'll either be directly on the motherboard or on a daughterboard with a proprietary connector.

  4. #4
    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    • Funkstar's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte EG45M-DS2H
      • CPU:
      • Intel Core2Quad Q9550 (2.83GHz)
      • Memory:
      • 8GB OCZ PC2-6400C5 800MHz Quad Channel
      • Storage:
      • 650GB Western Digital Caviar Blue
      • Graphics card(s):
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      • PSU:
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      • Case:
      • Antec NSK1480 Slim Mini Desktop Case
      • Operating System:
      • Vista Ultimate 64bit
      • Monitor(s):
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    There is a new standard for mobile graphics that should let you upgrade them. Not many laptops have this though.

    Search the forums for "barebones laptop", someone spent a lot of time researching it all (can't remember who it was). Even if you won't don't go that route, it ould give you an idea of what is possible.

  5. #5
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    It is wholly possible to make your own laptop just like a PC, I think there was an article in CustomPC.

    The main problem is getting a suitable chassis with the correct motherboard, if you search the internet you'll find them (I think Acer might have a few?), like the other posters said above; Graphics are meant to be upgradeable but unless you're an OEM like Dell, Asus, Etc - you will have a really hard time getting hold of one.

    With mid range Core2Duo laptops available from £500-600 (Toshiba Satellite) it makes more sense to buy one of these than try to upgrade an old one. Incidentally I've upgraded the CPU on an old Sony VAIO and it really wasnt worth the hassle as it was only a step up in CPU speed which didnt make that much of an impact.

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    Thanks for the help. I was of the impression that CPU's were soldered into a laptop, not sure why.

    So if I bang a E6600 in a laptop the worst that can happen is a few cooling issues and an unrecognisable processor in bios. Sounds like its worth a go

  7. #7
    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    • Funkstar's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Gigabyte EG45M-DS2H
      • CPU:
      • Intel Core2Quad Q9550 (2.83GHz)
      • Memory:
      • 8GB OCZ PC2-6400C5 800MHz Quad Channel
      • Storage:
      • 650GB Western Digital Caviar Blue
      • Graphics card(s):
      • 512MB ATI Radeon HD4550
      • PSU:
      • Antec 350W 80+ Efficient PSU
      • Case:
      • Antec NSK1480 Slim Mini Desktop Case
      • Operating System:
      • Vista Ultimate 64bit
      • Monitor(s):
      • Dell 2407 + 2408 monitors
      • Internet:
      • Zen 8mb
    I don't think a desktop processor would work in a laptop. They are usually T, L or U series chips as opposed to E series. T is the normal, L is low voltage and U is ultra low voltage.

  8. #8
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    • staffsMike's system
      • Motherboard:
      • evga 680i
      • CPU:
      • e6600
      • Memory:
      • geil ultra pc6400
      • Storage:
      • WD 320gb
      • Graphics card(s):
      • leadtek 8800 GTS 640mb
      • PSU:
      • ocz gameXstream 700w
      • Case:
      • akasa eclipse
      • Monitor(s):
      • dell 2007wfp and Lg L194WT
      • Internet:
      • pipex homecall
    Yeah an e6600 is the wrong socket for MOST laptops

    http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=3783

    you have to love that.

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    HEXUS.social member Agent's Avatar
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    Some of the higher end laptops come with a MXM slot, or Mobile PCI Express Module. These mean upgrading the graphics card is easy
    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    And by trying to force me to like small pants, they've alienated me.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pob255's Avatar
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    • Pob255's system
      • Motherboard:
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      • CPU:
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    I'd also like to add that on a few of the laptops I've taken apart that the heatsink/cpu doesn't use a normal thermal paste but uses a thermal epoxy/glue instead

    I've encountered it in HP, Sony and acer laptops, it's yellow, has the consistancy of old chewing gum and is totally evil to remove it all for fresh paste to be applied for reseating the heat sink.

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    • Indi75's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus P5W DH Deluxe WiFi
      • CPU:
      • Intel Core2Duo E6850
      • Memory:
      • 8GB Corsair TwinX XMS2 DDR2 PC2-8500
      • Storage:
      • 2 x Western Digital Caviar RE 160GB 1600YS SATA-II 16MB Cache RAID0
      • Graphics card(s):
      • ATI Sapphire HD4870 512MB GDDR5
      • PSU:
      • 650W Corsair HX CMPSU-650HXUK
      • Case:
      • Antec P182 Super Midi Tower (Gun Metal Black)
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 7 Home Premium / Windows 8 Consumer Preview
      • Monitor(s):
      • Dell Ultrasharp 2408WFP 24" Widescreen LCD Monitor - Midnight Grey
      • Internet:
      • Orange Broadband 19.1MB
    I've got an Inspiron 9300 that I'd love to slap a T7400 into but neither BIOS or socket will have any of it.

  12. #12
    The King of Vague Steve B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    Some of the higher end laptops come with a MXM slot, or Mobile PCI Express Module. These mean upgrading the graphics card is easy
    i'd amend that to easier as MXM graphics cards tend to be thin on the ground dont they?

  13. #13
    HEXUS.social member Agent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B View Post
    i'd amend that to easier as MXM graphics cards tend to be thin on the ground dont they?
    Yeah, but its availability doesn't effect how hard it is to fit
    Quote Originally Posted by Saracen View Post
    And by trying to force me to like small pants, they've alienated me.

  14. #14
    The King of Vague Steve B's Avatar
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    cuts out cardboard shaped mobile 8800 and writes "OMGWTFCHOCOLATEMUFFIN8800FTWGTXMOBILE" on it
    look ma', i've got an 8800

  15. #15
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    omfg... you said that Steve - so I had a little goodle and found at Rock's website .. they've got what they call "xtreme ctx pro/thinnest 17" gaming notebook on steroids" which sports a core2duo, 2GB ram and NVIDIA 8700M GT 512MB ! obviously... it comes with a hefty price tag
    I found a review of the 7900 gtx version and they said it was really good... how can we suggest Hexus to review the 8700M version?

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