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Upgrading AMD CPU on a Toshiba

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I bought a Toshiba Satellite C655 last black Friday for an absolute steal, thinking I won’t be using it much (just like my last laptop) so I bought strong ‘budget’ laptop, but now I’m using every day and it’s not enough, I’m finding myself using various programs and multiple web-pages at once and the 2.2GHz dual core just can’t keep up. I upgraded the ram to 8GB (from 4) and its better but I see the processor maxing out every time I open up a tab in IE.

I hate to buy another laptop if I can upgrade the CPU for under $100.
The CPU is removable (opened up the laptop and was able to physically remove the cpu from the MB, so far so good, specs are as follows:

Athlon II P340
Speed: 2.2GHz
Cache: 512kb X2
HT link: 1.6GHz
Multiplier: 11X
TDP: 25W
Socket: S1G4

so my specific question about a CPU upgrade.

If I upgrade to a higher TDP then stock (say 35w), will I have a problem with overheating? Or the MB won’t be able to supply that power to the processor?

The current HT link is 1.6GHz will a CPU with a 1.8GHz be able to work?

Will the bios be able to recognize the CPU correctly? correct multiplier?

I’m looking at Phenom II N970 quad core, same speed, same multiplier, but 35 w and 1.8 HT

Or Phenom II N660 dual core, 3.0GHz, and 2Mb Cache, but again 35w 1.8HT
Thoughts and experiences?

UPDATE: see post 12
Edited by Checkered - 11/8/11 at 9:12pm
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post #2 of 12
The answer to all of your questions is obvious if there is another laptop in Tosh's lineup with an identical chassis, motherboard and all that, only with a 35W Quad. If that exists you can be pretty sure your mobo has BIOS support and can supply the right amount of power and also the cooling should cope well. If there isn't any Quad 35W Tosh on a similar chassis then you're taking some chances - all your concerns are valid. The cooling may not cope, the mobo may toast the VRM or may not even recognize the CPU, etc. The HT link isn't a problem, at worst it would run at the minimum common denominator.

Other thing, if the mobo can take the Quad, but the cooling can't - you can use a soft like K10Stat to manually dial CPU clock speed and voltage per speed grade (works on AII too) and by doing this you could undervolt or if needed underclock the x4 to fit within the power envelope that the cooling system can safely dissipate.

Last thing, why not an SSD? It may be a 100+ investment, but it would likely add more ooomph to the laptop and you can move it to your next lappy when upgrading. The CPU sould be bought only if you find yourself often with the CPU close to 100% for long periods of time, if the rig is sluggish it's the storage that is usually at fault.

cheers
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post #3 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragosmp View Post
The answer to all of your questions is obvious if there is another laptop in Tosh's lineup with an identical chassis, motherboard and all that, only with a 35W Quad. If that exists you can be pretty sure your mobo has BIOS support and can supply the right amount of power and also the cooling should cope well. If there isn't any Quad 35W Tosh on a similar chassis then you're taking some chances - all your concerns are valid. The cooling may not cope, the mobo may toast the VRM or may not even recognize the CPU, etc. The HT link isn't a problem, at worst it would run at the minimum common denominator.

Other thing, if the mobo can take the Quad, but the cooling can't - you can use a soft like K10Stat to manually dial CPU clock speed and voltage per speed grade (works on AII too) and by doing this you could undervolt or if needed underclock the x4 to fit within the power envelope that the cooling system can safely dissipate.

Last thing, why not an SSD? It may be a 100+ investment, but it would likely add more ooomph to the laptop and you can move it to your next lappy when upgrading. The CPU sould be bought only if you find yourself often with the CPU close to 100% for long periods of time, if the rig is sluggish it's the storage that is usually at fault.

cheers
^This, An SSD is an amazing thing for a laptop it will extend the life of the laptop and increase load times by a ton. I have used an SSD on an aging laptop with similar specs and that laptop felt like new plus you don't have to worry about data loss if you accidentally drop it.
post #4 of 12
yeah-the craptastic 5400rpm Hdd's are pure dogs.SSD.
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post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragosmp View Post
The answer to all of your questions is obvious if there is another laptop in Tosh's lineup with an identical chassis, motherboard and all that, only with a 35W Quad.
Toshiba doesn’t publish the specs on the MB, so I felt stuck on that front, I had to do some digging around to find that info, I found a source to look up the MB specs on various Toshibas….thanks for that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragosmp View Post
Last thing, why not an SSD? It may be a 100+ investment, but it would likely add more ooomph to the laptop and you can move it to your next lappy when upgrading. The CPU sould be bought only if you find yourself often with the CPU close to 100% for long periods of time, if the rig is sluggish it's the storage that is usually at fault.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fateful_Ikkou View Post
^This, An SSD is an amazing thing for a laptop it will extend the life of the laptop and increase load times by a ton. I have used an SSD on an aging laptop with similar specs and that laptop felt like new plus you don't have to worry about data loss if you accidentally drop it.
I realize an SSD will give both better battery life and faster load times, however currently the cheapest 500GB SSD is $700 which is almost double what I paid for the laptop, $700 is a tough pill to swallow when a CPU upgrade will be around $40-60 after I sell me current CPU, also the limited write on an SSD is a big downside, I use the laptop for downloading movies/shows/games so it won’t last more than 5 years. I will wait for the price to come down to a more reasonable 0.40-0.50 cents per GB.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dragosmp View Post
Other thing, if the mobo can take the Quad, but the cooling can't - you can use a soft like K10Stat to manually dial CPU clock speed and voltage per speed grade (works on AII too) and by doing this you could undervolt or if needed underclock the x4 to fit within the power envelope that the cooling system can safely dissipate.
As far as bios, I found the bios used in various Toshibas but they are all same CPU or slower, the only better one that I found was 100MHz faster, hardly worth the upgrade. I didn’t realize there was a tool for that, thanks again, REP for you
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post #6 of 12
Grab a 64GB SSD for roughly $120 (I recommend the Crucial M4) and pick up a larger HDD say maybe 300GB seeing as the price on these drives has skyrocketed lately or if you hurry you can get a 1TB via best buy,wal-mart, or staples for $70~$80 before they adjust their prices but if you do this you need to make like the wind because they'll be gone before the end of the week. Oh and make sure you get an External 500GB or 1TB drive for your storage and run the SSD with windows.

Other helpful tips:
If your laptop has a Mini-Pci expansion slot on either side you can get USB3.0 Adapters for these so if you pick up a USB3.0 external you can really enjoy the good transfer speeds. I speak from experience on this and let me tell you it really helped out my old HP that's been through Iraq with my dad and a several tours through Germany.
post #7 of 12
If the SSD isn't an option maybe a hybrid HDD/SSD might be: click
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post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
I don’t want to hassle with an external drive, and SSD (or HDD hybrid) is not in the cards right now, definitely in the future.

Just ordered an AMD Phenom II Quad-Core X920 Black Edition 2.3GHz, the shop has a 15% restock fee in case it doesn’t work.

I was contemplating between a faster Dual Core with bigger Caches…or a quad…and looking at my cores the last few days they are always busy but never really maxed, so more cores will benefit me.
Edited by Checkered - 11/4/11 at 10:24am
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post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Checkered View Post
I don’t want to hassle with an external drive, and SSD (or HDD hybrid) is not in the cards right now, definitely in the future.

Just ordered an AMD Phenom II Quad-Core X920 Black Edition 2.3GHz, the shop has a 15% restock fee in case it doesn’t work.

I was contemplating between a faster Dual Core with bigger Caches…or a quad…and looking at my cores the last few days they are always busy but never really maxed, so more cores will benefit me.
Wut. Your cores are never maxed, then it's not a CPU bottleneck most likely. EDIT: Ok I saw the OP, so even if you were maxing 2 cores, that doesn't mean you'll be able to use 4 cores effectively(if you use programs that can use 4 cores, disregard.). Anyways a Phenom II X2 N660 would've been better - the Phenom II quads are underwhelming (i3 dual-cores at ~2ghz are the same speed for multi-threaded).

Ex: If you went from Athlon II to 3ghz Phenom II: 2.2ghz -> 3ghz = 35% performance gain, plus maybe 5% for more cache etc. Big gain regardless of whether you're using only 1 thread, or 2 threads.

The X920 won't make your system slower of course, but do you really think opening a tab in IE can use 3 cores? Consider that per-core performance is maybe 10% higher.
Edited by jrbroad77 - 11/4/11 at 5:37pm
 
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post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
I guess I’m not explain myself, I want to be able to do more things at once.

Ex: I have bit-torrent in the background and surfing the internet…no problem, but as soon as I want to do something more, like play background music everything slows down.

Same thing if I have a P2P and a bit torrent running at the same time, if I try to open word…I have to sit there and wait for the sucker to open (looking at my cores @100% for 15-20 sec), but if I have nothing running the background it opens instantly.

Playing a DIVX movie (CPU intensive codec) if I have anything else running it starts to lag.
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