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16GB memory for X240

X230-X280, X390 Series
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16GB memory for X240

#1 Post by sancat » Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:58 am

Hi all,

I'm considering buying an X240, mostly because of the screen resolution. One downside of the X240, is that it only accepts 1 single SODIMM, which to now were only available up to 8GB sizes. I do need more than that to process the datasets I use.

Has anybody tested these? Does the BIOS allow for 16GB?

http://www.intelligentmemory.com/dram-m ... 3-so-dimm/

They appear to have a module code IMM2G64D3(L)SOD8AG which appears to be the first 16GB, and can do DDR3-1600. They may become available by mid April at $300

This post suggests it won't work...


On the other hand, it was "undocumented" that 2 8GB sticks could be used in X2xx series back in the day..

Adding a bit more info
A person from intelligentmemory says that a Haswell machine will not work with these chips, unless a change of the memory reference code, which is part of the BIOS. It is not yet 100% sure if it can be fixed by a BIOS update or not. On March 10, 2014, they did have a customer make it work on an Ivybridge E by modifying the memory reference code. Lenovo could work with Intel, and change this code.

Any ideas? Any Lenovo and/or Intel folks around?



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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#2 Post by ajkula66 » Mon Mar 10, 2014 6:53 pm

Welcome to the forum!

Unfortunately, it's pretty clear that none of the existing Intel chips will work with these DIMMs. I can't find the discussion that went on NBR regarding the same issue right now, but the conclusion was the same: no-go.

And if you expect someone from Intel and/or Lenovo to do something about it, please be advise that I have a nice selection of bridges to offer for sale... :D
...Knowledge is a deadly friend when no one sets the rules...(King Crimson)


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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#3 Post by twmemphis » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:14 am


I work for a distributor of these 16GB SO-DIMM and DIMM modules.
The main problem really is the memory reference code (short: MRC), which is a little piece of software that is part of the BIOS. This MRC is coming from Intel.
Unfortunately, Intel did not yet realize that there is a demand for 16GB modules from the market. Supporting them is not "POR" (Plan Of Record) for Intel unless Intels customers, such as Lenovo, request Intel to add the support for those memories to the MRC.

And yes, as Sancat said, it is correct that one famous company (that I may not yet name) has modified the MRC on their own for one of their Ivybridge E based motherboards and the 16GB modules are working fine on that board now.
This shows that it is only a software-issue, not a hardware problem. Theoretically any Lenovo Thinkpad or any other system based on Intel CPUs could be upgraded with 16GB DIMM or SO-DIMM modules.
However, there could also be hardware-limitations for some Intel CPUs which we do not yet know of. The fact that it was possible to fix the MRC of the Ivybridge E to support 16GB modules does not yet mean that the same is possible for any other Ivybridge or Haswell CPU. Only Intel can verify that.

What I can say today is that any AMD platform and any Freescale platform we have tried so far is working fine with the 16GB modules. Also, Intel has officially added support for 16GB modules by a MRC/BIOS-update for their Atom C2000 processors. But Intel is not yet even "planning" to do an update of the MRC/BIOS for all the standard CPUs used on desktops, laptops and servers, unless their key-customers - like Lenovo - show clear interest in such a MRC modification and request to add the support to Intels POR for the CPUs.

All that end-customers can do is to ask your desktop/laptop and motherboard-suppliers to look at the 16GB products from I'M Intelligent Memory and work on adding the support for them. And eventually, Lenovo and others will then ask Intel to do the modification. If enough end-customers ask for it, then maybe Intel will take the move. But I think Lenovo alone is already powerful enough to convince Intel to make the little change to their MRC/BIOS.

If Lenovo needs samples, contact me!


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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#4 Post by rosswindows » Wed Jul 23, 2014 4:25 pm

Please add me to the list of Lenovo customers that would like to request support for these modules.

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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#5 Post by jdrou » Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:37 pm

With more ultraportable laptops having only one RAM slot available for upgrade I would certainly expect demand for higher-density modules to increase. Not so much with systems having 2-4 slots.
Current Thinkpads:
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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#6 Post by sancat » Thu Jul 31, 2014 8:14 am

Hi all,

It is frustrating that there appears to be no solution from Lenovo.

My company IT department has offered an HP machine that can do what we need. We are buying 2 for testing.

Will report back, once we get to some conclusions. What is going to be more challenging is to learn about the hardware reliability. Even when some of the X20x series were seriously lacking, Thinkpad/Lenovo has been overall a strong performer in that front.



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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#7 Post by sancat » Thu Oct 02, 2014 12:20 pm

Hi all,

After 2 months using the HP EliteBook 820, we are fairly happy with it.

http://h71016.www7.hp.com/dstore/html/p ... _Sheet.pdf

See message 38 on the lenovo forum
http://forums.lenovo.com/t5/X-Series-Th ... 774/page/4

The machine seems solid, and is able to support 16GB of memory. Granted, we don't have the fancy screen we wanted, but, at least we can process the datasets we work with.

Many of our processing is now cloud based, but, for prototype manipulation, in the age of 1M row spreadsheets, R, and multiple windows open at once, 16 GB appears as a must for our work.

So, we are going to be provide our staff, in need of a powerful windows platform with HPs, after 7 years of working with Lenovo. For the rest of the team, we are either providing them with Mac Air on OSX or Mac Air on Windows 7.

Good luck


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Re: 16GB memory for X240

#8 Post by LunaP » Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:48 pm


Glad to see we're not the only company moving away from Lenovo. After a long overdue process with our departments, we've finally ended our contract with Lenovo due to their poor customer service and support. We've been submitting issues and concerns to them for years however very rarely do we see any response on this. We've also taken the move to HP and so far our production has since gotten better. Customer support is quick and responsive and we have more room to breath now.

Hopefully with time lenovo realizes that time moves forward along with technology and gets their gears going again, however for now, until they decide to be productive they will continue to keep losing business. Hope the best for you and your company as well.

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