Info HP ZBook 17 G2 MXM Upgrade Success!

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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I have a ZBook 17 G2 (as well as a G1) and can confirm the following:

Quadro M3000M

Quadro M4000M

Quadro M5000M

Quadro P3000

Quadro P3200

Quadro P4000

Quadro P4200

Quadro RTX 4000 Mobile

THESE CARDS ALSO WORK ON ZBOOK 15 G1 and G2!

I only was able to test the RTX 4000 Mobile for boot into windows, I did not have time to install drivers as it was not my card.

Drivers for Pascal will not install, even with INF mods, probably due to TPM or some other such thing beyond my comprehension.

To install drivers, I put in the M4000M, installed the driver, and then put the PXXXX in and forced it through Device Manager without uninstalling the driver first.

I sold my P4000 to someone else on eBay and they were able to install it in their G2 using the same method.

The P3000, P3200, and P4000 are all PNY models (although Eurocom will claim that PNY does not make them, Eurocom likes to lie and scam people on upgrade kits anyways). However, my P4200 came from a ZBook 17 G5 and the seller modded a BIOS chip onto it.

It should be noted that Maxwell v2 graphics (MXXXX) reduce outputs to 1 port (including on dock) and Pascal graphics are completely incompatible with the ZBook G1 and G2 display mux! I'm not sure why but this occurred on all Maxwell and Pascal GPUs I tested. I was unable to test Quadro RTX 4000 display compatibility.

ZBook 17 G2 running P4200 (System board ID 2255):



ZBook 15 G2 running M4000M (System Board ID 2253)



ZBook 15 G2 running P3000:

 
Last edited:
May 12, 2022
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that's very inspiring!
I almost break my card so I'm seeking an upgrade recently
Probably give rtx a try
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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I might be getting a P5200 at some point, but honestly anything above an RTX 4000 is a waste unless you're doing graphics-intensive actual work.

Even with my CPU OC'd to 4.2Ghz it still becomes a thermal bottleneck and a 4940MX isn't going to help when it's running at 100C. The CPU cooling in this laptop is abysmal and it's clear HP engineers prioritized GPU cooling.
 
May 12, 2022
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I might be getting a P5200 at some point, but honestly anything above an RTX 4000 is a waste unless you're doing graphics-intensive actual work.

Even with my CPU OC'd to 4.2Ghz it still becomes a thermal bottleneck and a 4940MX isn't going to help when it's running at 100C. The CPU cooling in this laptop is abysmal and it's clear HP engineers prioritized GPU cooling.
yep I agree, looks like P5200 is as far as this laptop can go. I have a 4930 and even don't bother to do any overclock on CPU because it's already too hot :D . Now the CPU is a bottleneck, also probably the slow memory frequency of old platform.
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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yep I agree, looks like P5200 is as far as this laptop can go. I have a 4930 and even don't bother to do any overclock on CPU because it's already too hot :D . Now the CPU is a bottleneck, also probably the slow memory frequency of old platform.
I think the laptop supports DDR3 1866, not sure, haven't tested it, my main priority is GPU.

I would go with RTX 4000 just for RT cores, but I don't play any games or do any work that would benefit from them.

New HP Zbook G7 doesn't even support MXM anymore. GPU is soldered so MXM prices will only go up in the coming years unless Dell does something but Dell has already moved to their crappy proprietary connector for GPU.

AD-LINK TECH makes MXM cards for embedded but orders must be bulk. They make an A4500 so if I can get my hands on one I can test compatibility. But you'd best be moving to a newer ZBook since Intel 4th gen is on its last legs.

My ZBook runs Cyberpunk 2077 just fine at Medium settings, but it's clear that 4 cores and 8 threads is a serious bottleneck alongside my DDR3 1600.

Overclocking CPU cache helps a little but just makes temps worse.
 
May 12, 2022
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zbook G7 is perfect if it do not use the crap GPU module like Dell, sad. and I heard that the cooling of G6 is even worse than G2. It's difficult to decide an update now.
Regarding the display output problem, seems like some of the display circuits of zbook motherboard is weirdly designed in order to be compatible for regualr screen and dreamcolor screen simultaneously. Are you using dreamcolor screen or regular display?
By the way, thanks again for the effort of testing and publishing
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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zbook G7 is perfect if it do not use the crap GPU module like Dell, sad. and I heard that the cooling of G6 is even worse than G2. It's difficult to decide an update now.
Regarding the display output problem, seems like some of the display circuits of zbook motherboard is weirdly designed in order to be compatible for regualr screen and dreamcolor screen simultaneously. Are you using dreamcolor screen or regular display?
By the way, thanks again for the effort of testing and publishing
It's the laptop displayport that don't work, internal display works fine

Laptop has eDP to LVDS adapter board inside display bezel
 

gangtchen

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May 15, 2022
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It's the laptop displayport that don't work, internal display works fine

Laptop has eDP to LVDS adapter board inside display bezel
Hi, do you mean the non-DreamColor variant can use Pascal and later cards for internal display?
I recently purchased all the parts to upgrade my 8770w to DreamColor... The only difference with zbook 17 G1 and G2 is that my iGPU is permanently disabled.
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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Hi, do you mean the non-DreamColor variant can use Pascal and later cards for internal display?
I recently purchased all the parts to upgrade my 8770w to DreamColor... The only difference with zbook 17 G1 and G2 is that my iGPU is permanently disabled.
All variants of zbook g1 and g2 can use pascal and newer.

Only dream color elitebook can use pascal and modification is required.

Zbook is better than elitebook, 3rd gen processor cannot be overclocked.

Zbook has 4th gen, all 4th gen mobile CPUs can be overclocked.

I would sell elitebook and all parts get a zbook with dream color instead, less expensive than elitebook. Too many people use elitebook which makes parts scarce.
 

gangtchen

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May 15, 2022
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All variants of zbook g1 and g2 can use pascal and newer.

Only dream color elitebook can use pascal and modification is required.

Zbook is better than elitebook, 3rd gen processor cannot be overclocked.

Zbook has 4th gen, all 4th gen mobile CPUs can be overclocked.

I would sell elitebook and all parts get a zbook with dream color instead, less expensive than elitebook. Too many people use elitebook which makes parts scarce.
Thanks! I wish I had known before... I sent back a Zbook because the seller thought it was DreamColor when it was not.

But I still intend to keep my EliteBook. I already have all parts for the upgrade to DreamColor, only the cable missing but it should arrive soon.

What modifications are required for Pascal and newer cards on EliteBook?
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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Thanks! I wish I had known before... I sent back a Zbook because the seller thought it was DreamColor when it was not.

But I still intend to keep my EliteBook. I already have all parts for the upgrade to DreamColor, only the cable missing but it should arrive soon.

What modifications are required for Pascal and newer cards on EliteBook?
you need a dremel rotary tool to cut out the heatsink of the mxm cooler because the vrm is shaped differently. I had to do this on zbook as well, but not as many cuts.
 

gangtchen

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May 15, 2022
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you need a dremel rotary tool to cut out the heatsink of the mxm cooler because the vrm is shaped differently. I had to do this on zbook as well, but not as many cuts.
Thanks a lot for your answer. After checking, they look identical to me, do you have some pictures of the vrm layout?
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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Thanks a lot for your answer. After checking, they look identical to me, do you have some pictures of the vrm layout?
ZBook ships with either AMD R9 280M or Quadro Kxxx GPUs. Kepler has much different VRM shape than Maxwell or Pascal... Maxwell is identical to Pascal, and RTX XXXX makes another slight change. Fully custom cooling is required for Turing since MXM mount is different. I didn't have time for this even though I have solder paste and heat gun...need more time :p

 

gangtchen

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May 15, 2022
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ZBook ships with either AMD R9 280M or Quadro Kxxx GPUs. Kepler has much different VRM shape than Maxwell or Pascal... Maxwell is identical to Pascal, and RTX XXXX makes another slight change. Fully custom cooling is required for Turing since MXM mount is different. I didn't have time for this even though I have solder paste and heat gun...need more time :p

Indeed... I upgraded to maxwell without paying attention to VRM shape so I think I will not modify the heatsink if I only upgrade to Pascal. I was thinking about 3D printing for a Turing upgrade, I will keep the forum posted if I ever have time and money for an RTX 3000 or more with 3D printed support.
 

Etrius vanRandr

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May 11, 2022
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Indeed... I upgraded to maxwell without paying attention to VRM shape so I think I will not modify the heatsink if I only upgrade to Pascal. I was thinking about 3D printing for a Turing upgrade, I will keep the forum posted if I ever have time and money for an RTX 3000 or more with 3D printed support.
Check your elitebook...the MXM heatsink may not be flat to the card and your VRMs may be overheating. This is very bad if you did not check the shape!
 

gangtchen

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May 15, 2022
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Ye then I got banned for making fun of a guy who burned three GTX 1070 because he improperly installed without cutting heatsink
Haha, I sure don't want to be that guy. My heatsink seems flat though... I will launch a test and check temperature. Only symptom that I could think of is a very faint high pitched noise in 3D benchmarks... Do you know what it could be?
 
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