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Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

W530/W540/W550 series specific matters only
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WizardOfBoz
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Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#1 Post by WizardOfBoz » Wed Apr 08, 2020 3:07 pm

Hi all. Just got a new to me w541 off ebay. 4940xm, 32Gb, 3k IPS screen, even has Pantone. It was filthy, but I cleaned it up and loaded Win 10 Pro. Checking it out now by running Passmark.

Some questions.

OEM SSDs: The thing was set up to run RAID via two Samsung 500Gb SSDs. These were Lenovo branded SSDs circa 2015. They ok?

Samsung 850 Evo Pro Better? I'm thinking that I'm going to set this up to run non-RAID via a single 500Gb drive, and probably will set it up with a Samsung Evo 850 Pro 500Gb. This is a more recent drive, and one that is less used I think. But would it be a step down in performance.

Does W541 do XMP? The machine has DDR3 PC-14200 1600MHz memory. My W530 has DDR3 PC-14200 which ends up running faster (I think 1866) as it is XMP . Thinking I'm going to use the W541 as my new main machine, so will swap memory. But will the W541 use the memory in XMP mode?

I'm using this with a docking station, interaced to a large (Dell) monitor. Any comments, bits of advice, etc? Thanks.

RealBlackStuff
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Thu Apr 09, 2020 1:14 am

Enjoy your new big toy!
Check the SMART results of your RAID-drives with https://hddscan.com/
(From memory) I haven't heard many positives about Lenovo-branded drives.
That Evo 850 Pro would most likely be a lot better.
Lovely day for a Guinness! (the Real Black Stuff). And pigs CAN fly!
Check out The Boardroom for Parts, Mods and Other Services.
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WizardOfBoz
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#3 Post by WizardOfBoz » Tue Apr 14, 2020 9:33 pm

Thanks, RBS (I was toying with calling you Alec, as in Alec Guiness, get it? You'd have a lot to live up to in the suave and good looks departments though!)

I decided that, for me, the sightly lower reliability (either disk goes out and your screwed) outweighed the slightly faster RAID setup (I'm not doing stuff that requires a lot of disk thrashing) so I went non-nraid. I screwed up and used my 850 Evo and not my 850 Evo Pro, so I'll have to delicense a program, clone the disk to the Evo Pro, and then relicense the software (Matlab).

I got the thing missing a key and with one loose key (fixed) and it didn't have a CD/DVD unit (it does now). It also has a dock (anyone need a 90W Adapter for a Yoga?) and two chargers. I'm going to benchmark it and then swap in the PC-14900 (1866MHz) for the PC-12800 (1600MHz) to see if it runs XMP and goes to 1866 like my W530 does.

All in all I've got a machine that's a few years younger than my W530, about 10% faster, with a 3k screen and a K2100M vs a K2000M. Plus, the think has a numeric keypad so that I can easily engter alt codes.

Next step is to build a desktop with about 3-4x computing power. Thnking of a Dell Poweredge T7910 with dual Xeon 2690 cpus and about 64Gb of DDR4 memory. I'm planning on transferring my Dell 1080p 27 inch monitor to my wife or son, and will get a 3k 27 inch monitor. The laptop and desktop will be run via a kvm switch, and the working directories will be mirrored. So if I do a model on my desktop, it will be installed on my laptop so I can run out the door and have a client meeting. That's the dream anyway.

Will report back on success/failure of XMP in W541

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#4 Post by RealBlackStuff » Wed Apr 15, 2020 2:02 am

WizardOfBoz wrote:
Tue Apr 14, 2020 9:33 pm
Thanks, RBS (I was toying with calling you Alec, as in Alec Guiness, get it?
You'd have a lot to live up to in the suave and good looks departments though!)
Objection, your Honor!
I think I look a lot better!
Image

WizardOfBoz
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#5 Post by WizardOfBoz » Wed Apr 15, 2020 1:15 pm

Whomever it is in that picture is indeed a good looker.

Natakranta
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#6 Post by Natakranta » Thu Apr 16, 2020 5:42 pm

Hi, I have W541 with exact same internals and 3K screen.
Is yours running hot?
Mine is both on W10 and on Mint. Even ThrottleStop undervoltung doesn't seem to help.
Fan is spinning blowing hot air like a vacuum cleaner. Watching movie on VLC player, it is wooshing the air, but worst is playing 1440p video on YouTube 9n full screen. This is hell unlished.
What's your experience?

I haven't repasted mine yet, which could help, or not. I have it less then a year and I don't know if or when was it repasted.
I just can't make myself to do it's a lot of disassembling, I know I did it once with T540p.

WizardOfBoz
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#7 Post by WizardOfBoz » Thu Apr 16, 2020 9:43 pm

Natakranta, I'm running 50° C or so with minimal fan action. You might try taking off the keyboard and palmrest (not too difficult - a ten minute job) and blowing any dust out. Use canned air and blow both ways. You might be surprised at how congested the airways are. Hope that helps.

Correction: I'm running about 42° C, per Core Temp.

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#8 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Apr 17, 2020 3:24 am

Natakranta wrote:
Thu Apr 16, 2020 5:42 pm
I haven't repasted mine yet, which could help, or not. I have it less then a year and I don't know if or when was it repasted.
I just can't make myself to do it's a lot of disassembling, I know I did it once with T540p.
You know where to find me...

Natakranta
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#9 Post by Natakranta » Fri Apr 17, 2020 4:56 am

RealBlackStuff wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 3:24 am
You know where to find me...
I do, but there is no excuse for me not to do it myself, apart of laziness and procrastination.
I did it once with T540p last year using W540 YouTube tutorial, so I know how , just need to find the when ;)

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#10 Post by Natakranta » Fri Apr 17, 2020 4:56 am

WizardOfBoz wrote:
Thu Apr 16, 2020 9:43 pm
Natakranta, I'm running 50° C or so with minimal fan action. You might try taking off the keyboard and palmrest (not too difficult - a ten minute job) and blowing any dust out. Use canned air and blow both ways. You might be surprised at how congested the airways are. Hope that helps.

Correction: I'm running about 42° C, per Core Temp.
Thanks, that give me hope repasting may help. Fingers crossed.

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#11 Post by WizardOfBoz » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:13 am

Natakranta wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 4:56 am
Thanks, that give me hope repasting may help. Fingers crossed.
Well, again, I think I'd start with blowing as much dust out of the fan/heat exchanger as I could. You might be surprised at how much this improves heat transfer.

I had an older model (can't recall if it was a T61p, or if this was related to my W530), but it sat in the dock a lot and at one point started shutting down randomly. I blew the the dust out (like a little explosion of dust) with canned air. Dropped the temp 15-20°C I think!

Repasting involves immensely more work than does just blowing out the fan. This might be helpful:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_mU6oC_MZ4

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#12 Post by Natakranta » Sat Apr 18, 2020 12:55 pm

WizardOfBoz wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:13 am
Repasting involves immensely more work than does just blowing out the fan. This might be helpful:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_mU6oC_MZ4
Thanks for the link. I didn't know this one, I'll definitely watch it.
Last time I used this W541 disassemble video when I was repasting T540p, that are same body, only graphics and ram slots number difference. I don't understand a word he says but video shows everything good enough to follow him step by step.

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#13 Post by Natakranta » Sun Apr 19, 2020 6:16 pm

Well guys, your virtual kick in my butt worked wonders to motivate me.
A bit of spare time in the evening helped as well.
My W541 CPU uncovered. Thermal paste was dry like Sahara desert sand. That explains a lot. GPU thermal paste was in a bit less bad condition, slightly moist, but just slightly.
Anyway repasted now and booted :D seems quieter, but it is late and not much time to better test.

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#14 Post by WizardOfBoz » Mon Apr 20, 2020 2:49 pm

I salute you for attempting this. Glad you got it back together. Not gonna do this till my CPU temp tells me to.

WizardOfBoz
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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#15 Post by WizardOfBoz » Tue Apr 28, 2020 12:22 pm

Natakranta wrote:
Sun Apr 19, 2020 6:16 pm
Well guys, your virtual kick in my butt worked wonders to motivate me.
A bit of spare time in the evening helped as well.
My W541 CPU uncovered. Thermal paste was dry like Sahara desert sand. That explains a lot. GPU thermal paste was in a bit less bad condition, slightly moist, but just slightly.
Anyway repasted now and booted :D seems quieter, but it is late and not much time to better test.
And your example motivated me to attack my W530. New paste, max temps dropped about 15C, normal temps dropped about 8-10C.

Thanks for showing the way, Natakranta.

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Re: Just picked up a new (to me) W541 - Questions

#16 Post by Natakranta » Tue May 05, 2020 6:12 am

That's a really nice drop in temperatures. Well done!
I've been using a bit my W541 since repasting CPU. On Windows 10 it seems quieter now when browsing web. ThrottleStop shows temperatures around 45-48°c occasionally jumping to 60ish°c
On Mint it is definitely hotter and louder than on W10, that's a disappointment.

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