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P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

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P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

#1 Post by naanac02 » Thu Apr 29, 2021 5:30 pm

Hey all,
I have recently been asked by a coworker to repair a ThinkPad P52 laptop which is experiencing the following symptoms: cannot detect P1000 GPU, external displays do not receive any input, has issues with network and bluetooth connectivity, runs slower overall. Coworker says he had been running multiple resource-heavy programs at once at the time of failure, so I have reason to believe that this is a result of overheating.

Because of this, I think a GPU replacement would be a good place to start with the repair. Unfortunately however, all of the online documentation that I can find points toward the GPU being soldered directly to the system board, so I have started looking into replacing the entire board.

This is where I hit somewhat of a brick wall. The serial number for the replacement system board is 5B20W22205, which when searched reveals this description: WIN,i7-8750,M1,4G,TPM,RA. I understand that the i7-8750 part is referring to the processor, however I cannot tell from this description what GPU comes installed. It is possible that the M1, 4G part is referring to a Nvidia M1000M GPU, however that card is not powerful enough for what this computer is used for.

Additionally, I came across the 5B20W22221 (WIN,i7-8850,M3,6G,AMT,TPM,RA) system board which is said to be compatible with this computer. If my theory about the part number is correct, then this card has an 8th gen i7 and 6gb M3000M GPU for only $340??

Any help understanding these system board/GPU part numbers is appreciated, or if anyone knows of a way to replace the GPU without replacing the entire system board that would help too.

- Canaan

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Re: P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

#2 Post by Brad » Fri Apr 30, 2021 12:49 am

Welcome to the forum.

Replacing a soldered in GPU is not an easy task so I think you are going in the right direction to replace the system board.

Unfortunately Lenovo part numbers leave much to be desired to determine what you need.

From what I understand the highest spec'd system board for the P52 has the nVidia 3200 GPU and the Xeon processor. You may need a different cooler for that one. Replacing the board with the same GPU and CPU would be the easiest option as you could use the existing cooler without issue.

If the system board is used then the S/N and UUID is most likely present. If new though you would have to add that information.

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Re: P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

#3 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Apr 30, 2021 1:12 am

Here are all the numbers that I could find:
WIN,i9-8950,P3,6G,TPM,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22225
WIN,i9-8950,P3,6G,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22226
WIN,i7-8850,M3,6G,AMT,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22222
WIN,i7-8850,M2,4G,AMT,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22218
WIN,i7-8850,M1,4G,AMT,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22214
WIN,i7-8750,P2,4G,TPM,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22209
WIN,i7-8750,P2,4G,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22210
WIN,i7-8750,M1,4G,TPM,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22205
WIN,i7-8750,M1,4G,RA SYSTEM BOARDS 5B20W22206

M1/M2/M3 = probably nVidia P1000/P2000/P3200 (as seen below)
P2/P3 = dunno
4G/6G = 4GB/6GB video RAM
AMT = Active Management Technology
TPM = Trusted Platform Module
RA = dunno

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Re: P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

#4 Post by H-Atkinson » Fri Jun 18, 2021 3:43 pm

You are going to be looking at a new system board. Luckily yours isn't high spec (the Xeon and P3200 models go for absurd amounts still), so it shouldn't cost a huge amount. What I would say though is first look at what the warranty status is, and if you qualify for extended warranty. You may be able to save money and hassle by going through Lenovo for this.
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Re: P52 System Board/GPU Replacement

#5 Post by joshtexas » Wed Jan 12, 2022 4:29 pm

I know what RA in RA-SYSTEM BOARD stands for here: RA is short for RAID.

There is a little history behind this. When ThinkPad/Lenovo/IBM in North Carolina released ThinkPad P50 earlier in October 2015, it followed the tradition of ThinkPad W540/W541 that some of them configured with RAID with notion Y-RA SYSTEM BOARD and some of them don't with N-RA. A few months later, ThinkPad got so much complaints that such an expensive work station came without RAID. After much debate ThinkPad released a new BIOS (ver 1.28?) with RAID enabled on all P51 to make everybody happy. So the subsequent model P51, P52, and P53 all got RAID enabled in the BIOS as standard issue. For anybody who purchased a P50 system with RAID enabled earlier, ThinkPad sent a docking station or backup battery as a token later, too. I got a docking station for free for instance. The rest is history.

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