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What would you do?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi there,

I hope I'm posting this in the right section but I'm wondering if I could get some help from people with more knowledge on this subject. I've never done anything like this so please bare with me if I make mistakes.

What I need help with is that I'm trying to determine whether it would be more beneficial for me to stick with my current laptop and swap some parts in to increase performance (As well as remedy a problem I will talk about later), or just get a new one. If I was to get a new one, what should I go for and where's the best place money-wise to get it?

The following are the specs of my current laptop (It's a HP Touchsmart TX2 that's around 4 to 5 years old. It still has all the components it shipped with):
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 250 GB Hard Drive
  • 2 GHz AMD Processor
  • Windows 7 OS (64 Bit) (It shipped with Windows Vista but I got a free upgrade to 7 from Microsoft)
  • No Graphics Card (It's some Intel Integrated BS that I think works through the processor)

The problem that I have been having with it as of lately is crashes. Most of the time they would happen when I would try and watch a video on it, but then it started to happen when I'd open a few tabs in Firefox, and most recently when it has just sat idle on its desktop. My suspicion was that the CPU was overheating and the laptop was crashing itself to prevent a meltdown, because just before it would crash the fan would be going nuts and the case would feel very hot around the CPU area. I tried things like decreasing the maximum clock speed of the processor and a cooling pad, and they worked for a while but eventually it went back to crashing on the desktop again. If my suspicion is correct, would including a Graphics Card help remedy the problem? Or would more need to be done? Or do I not understand the depth of the problem?

I'm not sure how relevant this is but I took the whole thing apart yesterday so it's in pieces right now. I have never taken a computer apart before (Nor have I put one together) and I didn't wear a ground strap so I might have damaged something, but everything looks okay and I've kept track of which screws came from where.

Thank you for reading and any help you can offer is much appreciated.
Edited by HanzBejinker - 7/22/13 at 7:58am
post #2 of 9
I would have started with blowing out the fan vents with compressed air, and maybe a reinstall of windows. It is unlikely in that notebook that you will be able to add a GPU to it. its likely completely integrated. You would have to do some research on the matter.

Since you have the notebook torn down, I would repaste the CPU with new thermal compound, then start assembling things, and dust it out real well, and see how it goes from there. You may want to reinstall windows on that hard drive or a new one, I would test it first to verify functionality.
     
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CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel 3630QM GTX 680m SLi 16gb ddr3 1866mhz 256gb Samsung SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
256gb Samsung SSD 750gb WD Black DVD/RW/BluRay notepal U3 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 18.4" 1080p 330watt power Brick Alienware M18x-R2 Chassis Black 
Mouse
Logitech G500 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i&-2720QM HP GM67 Quadro 1000M Generic 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
7200RPM CD/DVD-RW Stock Win 7 Professional X64 
MonitorCase
15.6" 1920x1080 & 22" Dell External 1680x1050 HP Elitebook 
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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
@identitycrisis:
Thanks for the speedy reply.

First, if I had to research that Integrated graphics stuff, is there a good site to go to for that stuff?

Second, so the CPU is pasted to the Motherboard? Thanks for that info because I didn't know.

As for the compressed air thing, I took a vacuum to it and got some crap out of it a while back and things improved a little. Is there anything I should worry about with the fan while using compressed air? Because I remember hearing somewhere that you can spin a fan too fast and damage it.
post #4 of 9
I have never worried about the fan I blow the dust out, to get it clean, big thing is making sure there is no dust trapped in between the heatsink fins.

The cpu may or may not be soldered onto the board, but what I meant was, you may be able to remove the heatsink and fan for the CPU and use new thermal paste to improve cooling, the thermal paste makes contact between the cpu and the cooler surface to conduct heat.

I am almost 100% sure there is no upgrade option for the GPU. But check the notebook review forums. they have specific forums for notebooks.
     
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel 3630QM GTX 680m SLi 16gb ddr3 1866mhz 256gb Samsung SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
256gb Samsung SSD 750gb WD Black DVD/RW/BluRay notepal U3 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 18.4" 1080p 330watt power Brick Alienware M18x-R2 Chassis Black 
Mouse
Logitech G500 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i&-2720QM HP GM67 Quadro 1000M Generic 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
7200RPM CD/DVD-RW Stock Win 7 Professional X64 
MonitorCase
15.6" 1920x1080 & 22" Dell External 1680x1050 HP Elitebook 
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CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel 3630QM GTX 680m SLi 16gb ddr3 1866mhz 256gb Samsung SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
256gb Samsung SSD 750gb WD Black DVD/RW/BluRay notepal U3 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit 18.4" 1080p 330watt power Brick Alienware M18x-R2 Chassis Black 
Mouse
Logitech G500 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i&-2720QM HP GM67 Quadro 1000M Generic 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
7200RPM CD/DVD-RW Stock Win 7 Professional X64 
MonitorCase
15.6" 1920x1080 & 22" Dell External 1680x1050 HP Elitebook 
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Sigh...

I see exactly what you're talking about now. What I THOUGHT was the CPU was something entirely different. I've removed the fan and I can now see inside of it and it is very dirty. I also see the thermal paste too.

The thing is though that this means the heat I was feeling was coming from the Hard Drive. Does that mean there's something wrong with the Hard Drive?
post #6 of 9
I've got a question here.... did you try all of your "software fix" options before you tore the laptop down? Did you try re-installing the operating system and bringing it back to it's original setup? Just wondering... as it seems kinda extreme to tear it all down if you didn't try software options first.
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post #7 of 9
Sounds more like the heatsink is clogged, which is why the pad worked for a little while until that no longer sufficed. Like the other members have noted though, both cleaning the heatsink and using new paste along with a fresh install will be very beneficial.

This will also be a prime time for an SSD upgrade, nothing fancy but it will breath some serious life into your machine. Ill check to make sure it has a SATA slot

Its not a natural SATA port, but it should have the adapter already supplied on your drive
Edited by TheReciever - 7/22/13 at 5:56pm
    
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post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Sorry for taking so long to reply guys. I had a term test in a third year university math course that I was really worried about.

@DarkFury: Well, anytime I would try those things it would crash. After cleaning it and hopefully putting it pack together successfully, I will definitely do a re-installation.

@TheReciever: I see you mentioned an upgrade to the hard drive but I have some questions about that. Since the computer came with a HDD, would changing to a SSD cause any issues? Where can I find out which SSDs would work in my laptop?
post #9 of 9
Shouldn't have any issues with changing to a SSD. Some have different thicknesses so just make sure its not thicker than the current HDD.
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