Alienware M17xr3 Overheating/Throttling

pleasehelp

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Hello all,

I have an Alienware M17xR3 (bought Sept. 2011). It is fully loaded, 580m, 256 GB SSD, 3d vision, 8 gb ddr3 1600 etc.. However, I have always been disappointing with how it deals with heat. I have it on a cheap belkin cooling pad (one mistake I know, just ordered the CoolerMaster U3 after reading great reviews on it). I have the latest Graphics Card and Motherboard BIOS, which were suppose to take away the lower end throttle (I think around 68 C) but still it throttles at 76 C. I installed HIWINFO 64, and when I go into the game I adjust the fans to spin at maximum. Using this program completely gets rid of the throttling for me, but now the gpu gets to around 80-83 C, and shuts off the computer when it hits around 88 C. I am using MSI Afterburner overlay while playing games, so I am monitoring the temps while playing. It seems like one thing people do is re-paste the graphics card with new thermal paste...would make sense laptop is 2 years old. If I do this along with using my new U3 pad, do you guys think this will adequately reduce overheating?

If there are any other ideas out there I am all ears. I was playing Civilization V, runs as smooth as butter but still such high temps. BF3 would also run hot, reaching high 70's. Are these dangerous temps? I never had a warranty, so I obviously don't really want to deal through Alienware, especially since all the forums I have read say they don't help solve the issue anyways.

Any ideas or comments regarding this heating issue would be great! Thanks
 

kookie3010

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Yeah hope its help.it is.usually the case with them m17x.i still.got.it up to this date and never had that problem anymore.The new.Aw 17 is awesome.its a tad lighter than my old m17.performancr are great.run crysis 3 at very high setting with aa set to.fxaa and.still get a nice fps with the gtx765m.ordered a gtx 780m a few days ago to improve the performance more.only downside no option for sli.but that really doesnt matter since i just got myself the new aw18 with gtx770m sli.:pthe 18 just stays at home since its brick heavy.i mainly bring the 17 around.
 

pinging

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Mine started doing the same thing about 3 weeks ago. No idea why, but after 2 years of working perfectly its starting to throttle at 78/79 degrees. I have been looking furiously to find an answer for this. Please let me know if anything works for you. I am considering re-pasting at this point but dont know if it will help at all.
Thanks!
 

kookie3010

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It might be time to replace the thermal.paste.when was the last time you had ur paste replace?i use to.have the same issue with my old m17x(now i got a new Aw 17)and i opened up my laptop,clear out any dust and reapply thermal grease and it works.great afterward.Also take additonal note,when i opened it up the thermal paste is.already harderned.i suggest u replace them asap to avoid any damage.now i make it a habit to replace paste.every 7-8 month atleast.
 

pinging

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Ok I will try that and let you know how it goes. Thanks!
BTW, how is the Aw17? Much improvement over the m17x? They look nice thats forsure :)
 

kookie3010

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Yeah hope its help.it is.usually the case with them m17x.i still.got.it up to this date and never had that problem anymore.The new.Aw 17 is awesome.its a tad lighter than my old m17.performancr are great.run crysis 3 at very high setting with aa set to.fxaa and.still get a nice fps with the gtx765m.ordered a gtx 780m a few days ago to improve the performance more.only downside no option for sli.but that really doesnt matter since i just got myself the new aw18 with gtx770m sli.:pthe 18 just stays at home since its brick heavy.i mainly bring the 17 around.
 

pleasehelp

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Sorry I never responded to this. I put new thermal paste on and that dropped the temp by about 10C! Now my 580m is dead though, so going to be upgrading to 770m.

 

pinging

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The m17xr3 supports this? I didn't know. where do u source the part or is dell doing it all for you? Thanks
 

pleasehelp

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Alienware tech told me they don't deal with the 580m anymore. Apparently they don't even stock the card anymore. They told me to get one on ebay. The 580m,680m,770m,and 780m are all interchangeable according go alienware tech support. Various forums are also claiming this to be true. I got a 770m for $300, so hopefully everything goes fine.
 

pinging

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So, an update on this, after such a long time. I have taken it in for repairs to a local repair shop that deals with Alienware laptops. The guy told me the GPU fan is not receiving enough power and that he has a solution to solder the power to another location hopefully giving it enough juice. If its not that he believes the motherboard is screwed. I really hope this guy isn't taking me for a ride. Also, why would this happen, he tells me every generation of Alienware laptop has some issue like this. But in his opinion based on his experience with gaming laptops, Alienware are still the best :(. If his solution doesn't work, its $450 for a new mobo, and I don't think I'm going to do that. Any thoughts.
 

pleasehelp

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I totally forgot about this thread. I actually replaced the 580m with the 770m over winter break and it fixed all my issues. I have been playing all my games (when possible I am a full time college student) without an issue. Crysis 3 and BF4 I play completely maxed and they run smooth as silk. I would find a 770m on ebay and replace it. All you have to do is find the custom nvidia driver to make the laptop recognize this graphics card. This is where I found the custom driver: http://forum.notebookreview.com/alienware-17-m17x/732251-upgrading-nvidia-gtx-770m-alienware-m17x-r3-2.html

Again this fixed all of my issues with this laptop. The 770m is also a great deal more powerful and is a great upgrade. Runs a lot cooler also!

 

Jagovanni

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I found that if you change your power plan to balanced and adjust the maximum processor state to around 80 percent, the heat is significantly reduced and there is no noticeable performance drop. I was playing Skyrim with heavy mods and it was blue screening on me due to excessive heat. After I made this adjustment, everything runs fine. Might work for you. Good luck!

 

mshirey

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I feel like I'm missing something... one person says that they set their fans to run full all of the time... how is this done? Another says "change your power plan to balanced and adjust the maximum processor state to around 80 percent", where/how is this done?

Thanks!

-- M.
 
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