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PlannedObsolescence

Flashing a Y500 with a Y580 bios? Possible?

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Does anyone here believe flashing a certain Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 with a Lenovo IdeaPad Y580 would be successful and result in a functional PC?

 

Here are the specifications for the particular Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 I'm talking about:

Intel® Core™ i7-3630QM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 750M GDDR5 Version
16GB Ram
15.6" HD 1920x180 Display
JBL speakers with Dolby Home Theater v4 sound enhancement

 

Key Specs and Drivers Y500:

 

http://www.lenovo.com/shop/emea/content/pdf/IdeaPad/YSeries/en/ideapad-y500-datasheet.pdf
http://support.lenovo.com/us/en/products/laptops-and-netbooks/ideapad-y-series-laptops/ideapad-y500-notebook?c=1&beta=false

 

A bios taken from this particular Y580 with these specifications:

Intel® Core™ i7-3630QM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 660M
16GB Ram
15.6" HD 1920x180 Display
JBL speakers with Dolby Home Theater v4 sound enhancement

 

 

Key Specs and Drivers Y500:

 

http://www.lenovo.com/shop/emea/content/pdf/notebooks/ideapad/y-series/y580/en/Y580_DS_EN.pdf
http://support.lenovo.com/us/en/products/laptops-and-netbooks/ideapad-y-series-laptops/ideapad-y580?beta=false


"The IdeaPad Y Series laptops released by Lenovo in mid-2012 were the Y480 and Y580. Lenovo followed them up towards the end of the year with the Y400 and the Y500 which had almost similar specifications. The main difference is that the Y400 and Y500 have an ultrabay slot which can be swapped for another hard drive, another fan or another GPU which will work in SLI with the already integrated one to increase performance drastically."

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IdeaPad_Y_Series

 

I'm not sure what would happen to the functionality of the Y500 ultrabay, but there doesn't seem to be any specific settings for it listed in the default Y500 bios or the modded one for that matter.

 

Now, I know that the Y580 came with a 660M and the Y500 I'm talking about has a 750M GDDR5. However, based on the specifications of the two graphics, I have very good reason to believe that the 750M GDDR5 is an overclocked 660M:

https://www.game-debate.com/gpu/index.php?gid=688&gid2=1715&compare=Nvidia GeForce GTX 660M-vs-Nvidia GeForce GT 750M 2GB GDDR5

 

They also have the same number of transistors (1,270 Million). Examining the vbios of a 750M GDDR5 and the vbios of a 660M, it would seem like you could replace the vbios a 750M GDDR5 with a 660M one without compatibility issues and simply modify the core speeds and boost clocks to the original ones for a 750M GDDR5:

 

https://www.techpowerup.com/gpuz/details/3yyyu
https://www.techpowerup.com/gpuz/details/c5c8y

 

The device ID for a Lenovo 660M is 10DE - 0FD4, while the device ID for a Lenovo 750M GDDR5 is 10DE - 0FE4, so it looks like one letter was changed. Further, a stock vbios 80.07.95.00.17 for a 750M GDDR5 appears as modified in NVIDIA Inspector according to a post in this thread:

 

post-12486-14494995080335.jpg

 

So why would you try to flash a Y580 bios with a Y500 anyway?

 

Well, you cannot use the Intel HD Graphics 4000 on the Y500, but you can on the Y580, which is odd because as you can see you could have a Y500 and a Y580 with the exact same CPU. There is an option on the Y580 bios called "UMA Graphics" under "Graphic Device" in addition to the "Switchable Graphic" option which will disable the discrete GPU and only enable the Intel HD Graphics 4000.

 

"UMA generally stands for unified memory architecture. It indirectly refers to the fact that integrated graphics card uses the system RAM because it does not have any of its own integrated RAM. Therefore, whenever you come across the term UMA that is an indication of some sort of integrated graphics."

 

The Y500 bios doesn't have this "UMA Graphic" option in the bios, nor does it have the "Graphic Device" option or the "Switchable Graphic" function by default. I don't see any reason why the exact same CPU on the Y500 cannot use its own system RAM to produce integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics just like the Y580, unless they physically altered the Intel i7 3630QM CPU somehow on the Y500. Its possible that the Y500 cannot use integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics because of a bios restriction and or because they restricted the ability to use UMA graphics via the bios. This might also increase battery life on the Y500 laptop, or maybe even you the ability to use NVIDIA Optimus since the HD 4000 graphics would be installed and enabled.

 

Another reason you might want to flash a 660M vbios on a 750M GDDR5 GPU is because perhaps the 660M has better driver support.

 

Finally, the Y500 bios is very restricted and terrible overall (not like the Y580 bios is any better, but it would seem like it would be an improvement if it gave you the ability to use the CPU's integrated graphics capabilities).

 

I haven't tried flashing a Y580 bios on a Y500 myself, but I guess if I could remove the CMOS battery to reset the Y500 bios to its original settings (which I'm having trouble doing since the CMOS battery is unnecessarily soldered to the motherboard as decided upon by the manufacturer of the laptop), it might be worth a shot.

 

Edited by PlannedObsolescence

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The Y580 bios is only for Y480/Y580.

I think that no one will take the risk to check it out :)

Edited by Ursa

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I agree with @Ursa.

I do not own a Y500. But I do own a Y580. I believe the reason you cannot use the integrated chipset on the Y500 has something to do with Optimus support (I could be wrong, but take that as a direction to look for more answers). 

Try getting a Y500 motherboard off ebay for 200 bucks and try it out! Let us know your findings.

JK that's a bit ridiculous. But if you film it and post it on YouTube, you might get your money back :D

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I have a Y500 and I am very happy it doesn't have the Optimus-crap. I've been battling that in other laptops, in my line of work, and my experience is that it's way more trouble than it's worth, for the extra batteri time.

 

The main issue is that many games don't know how to switch to the nVIDIA GPU - regardless of the settings in the nVIDIA Control Panel.

Edited by ShamblerDK

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On 2/11/2017 at 0:15 AM, classicarl said:

I agree with @Ursa.

I do not own a Y500. But I do own a Y580. I believe the reason you cannot use the integrated chipset on the Y500 has something to do with Optimus support (I could be wrong, but take that as a direction to look for more answers). 

Try getting a Y500 motherboard off ebay for 200 bucks and try it out! Let us know your findings.

JK that's a bit ridiculous. But if you film it and post it on YouTube, you might get your money back :D

 

I found out that the recovery name for the Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 "QIWY3.bin" seems to correspond with a name that is used on a Lenovo IdeaPad Y480 motherboard. I just did a successful Y500 bios recovery from a USB flash drive. I don't know if you would be able to do a bios recovery for a Y500 if you flashed it with a Y580 bios though, or whether using a Y580 bios on a Y500 would damage the Y500's motherboard. I think that the recovery name for the Y580 is "QIWY.bin", and perhaps the recovery would work (in the event of a bricked Y500 as a result of flashing a y580 bios) if you renamed the "QIWY3.bin"  file to "QIWY.bin", but I'm not sure.

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I recently found out that the recovery name for a Lenovo IdeaPad y580 bios is the same as the one for the Lenovo IdeaPad Y500. It is "QIWY3.bin". However, there is no recovery name for the Y580 version 8.00 or 8.01 bios given when you use the Phoenix tool.

 

So in theory, even if you were to brick a Y500 trying to flash a Y580 version 2 bios on it, you might be able to recover from it using the appropriate Y500 "QIWY3.bin" bios. I don't think the recovery would work if you used a version 8.00 or 8.01 Lenovo IdeaPad Y580 bios though, because it seems there is no way to do a bios recovery using those bios versions.

 

I'm not trying to convince anyone to try this, but this is what I have discovered using the Phoenix tool and I'm letting you all know.

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