Jump to content
AGmR

Help request for adding PCIex16 port on laptop (soldering)

Recommended Posts

Hello,

I am trying to add a PCIe port x4/x8/x16 on my laptop (model, dell inspiron 15r 5220), mainly for better eGPU performance. I am currently using an eGPU, and I recently upgraded to an R9 280x (which isn't quite working right now, but that's besides the point) from GTX 680 (which was working). I've searched a bit on it, but can't find anything that helps or it's too difficult to understand (google translate). I have a lot of soldering experience, so that should not be an obstacle. I also don't mind if I have to disable components (audio, etc) in order for this to work; although I prefer to avoid where possible.

Laptop Spec. :

Tg4WMGl.png

Mobo :

Front Side :

zNjmhlT.jpg

Back Side :

BiceboV.jpg

Thanks for reading, and I appreciate any responses. :)

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You have a socketted Ivy Bridge CPU. *if* you can enable the Northbridge x16 port, then consider using the dGPU-model E6430 schematic (available at http://forum.techinferno.com/dell-latitude-vostro-precision/9690-14-dell-latitude-e6430-performance-upgrades-system-mods.html#post118135 ) to solder wires to your CPU's x16 port on one side and the x16 PCIe slot on the other. You really only need x4 2.0 to get going. There are two TX + two RX pairs per lane with GND shields between them to prevent interference.

Otherwise if you have mPCIe+mPCIe ports that are port1+2, 3+4, 5+6 or 6+7 you could do a x2 2.0 implementation like discussed at http://forum.techinferno.com/dell-latitude-vostro-precision/9690-14-dell-latitude-e6430-performance-upgrades-system-mods-2.html#post130202

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems like your laptop comes with a dGPU (7670M). Can you enable/disable it in your BIOS?

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It seems like your laptop comes with a dGPU (7670M). Can you enable/disable it in your BIOS?

Yes thats right, yes i can enable/disable it by set "PCI reset delay to >> Disabled"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm in the same situation.

How would I go about doing that?

When I tested my iGPU-equipped Dell E6440, I could enable the dGPU port (Northbridge) using Setup 1.30. The E6440 has a iGPU+dGPU or iGPU-only model. The same bios applied to both. Appears then that the bios doesn't lock down that port.

Which seemed unusual to me. Previously tested iGPU-only Elitebooks had no ability to enable those dGPU ports.

If your dGPU port is locked, then need a strategy to enable it. Can try to modify UEFI variables as described at http://forum.techinferno.com/dell-latitude-vostro-precision/8176-%5Bguide%5D-dell-e6530-cpu-tdp-multi-unlocking.html#post111576 OR get a modified/unlocked BIOS that allows setting the PEG variable. If have an Elitebook/Probook then is virtually impossible to get that functionality.

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If your dGPU port is locked, then need a strategy to enable it. Can try to modify UEFI variables as described at http://forum.techinferno.com/dell-latitude-vostro-precision/8176-%5Bguide%5D-dell-e6530-cpu-tdp-multi-unlocking.html#post111576 OR get a modified/unlocked BIOS that allows setting the PEG variable. If have an Elitebook/Probook then is virtually impossible to get that functionality.

I had a private conversation with AGmR about his request. To summarise, he is using a modded bios with the ability to enable/disable dGPU/iGPU. He is willing to desolder his dGPU from the laptop in order to connect an eGPU riser (got his idea from here). He provided the Laptop schematics.

Problem is, if he desolder the dGPU how do we know which pin goes where? Do the PCIe signals go directly on the GPU chip or do they go on a different place on motherboard? (schematics are not very clear).

Can we find the pinout/datasheet on an 7670m card?

Maybe, we can use an MXM card, desolder the GPU off the card and find out where each PCIe signal goes. (?) Do 6xxxM cards and 7xxxM cards share the same layout?

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I had a private conversation with AGmR about his request. To summarise, he is using a modded bios with the ability to enable/disable dGPU/iGPU. He is willing to desolder his dGPU from the laptop in order to connect an eGPU riser (got his idea from here). He provided the Laptop schematics.

Problem is, if he desolder the dGPU how do we know which pin goes where? Do the PCIe signals go directly on the GPU chip or do they go on a different place on motherboard? (schematics are not very clear).

Can we find the pinout on an 7670m card?

Maybe, we can use an MXM card, desolder the GPU off the card and find out where each PCIe signal goes. (?) Do 6xxxM cards and 7xxxM cards share the same layout?

pg 34 of the linked Vostro 3560 schematic shows the x8 2.0 link pins to the 7670m chip. You'd be removing the 7670M chip and soldering lines to those pins and a PCIe socket. Then you'd run a powered PCIe riser externally to attach your video card.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My bad. Pg 34.

Got this. I assume that it AA38, Y37 etc, are coordinates on the board... I didn't realise that.

Tx, Rx, CLK, PERST ok

WAKE# signal is the only one that I can't locate, but maybe it is not crucial?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Got this. I assume that it AA38, Y37 etc, are coordinates on the board... I didn't realise that.

Tx, Rx, CLK, PERST ok

WAKE# signal is the only one that I can't locate, but maybe it is not crucial?

AA38, Y37 etc probably refers to the HD7690M pin array.

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sent an email to BPlus requesting expression of interest in making a PCIe adapter hosted off the CPU

From: Nando <Tech Inferno Faneva@gmail.com>

Date: Tue, Jun 2, 2015 at 6:54 PM

Subject: eGPU interposer off CPU?

To: BPlus

Hi BPlus,

Based on discussion at http://forum.techinferno.com/general-notebook-discussions/10100-help-request-adding-pciex16-port-laptop-soldering.html#post134686 we have found a previous example where a user has attached a PCIe slot to the internals of a systemboard like at Sprites mods - Adding SATA and PCIE to a HP T5325 thin client - The PCI-Express port

The cleverness there is the PCIe socket being used along with a riser.

The same idea could apply to i-core CPUs. They host a dGPU off the Northbridge off the CPU itself.

If that port is already unlocked (or can be unlocked with say a modded bios or EFI BIOS variable writes), then an interposer could be added between the CPU and systemboard that taps the PCIe port off to a PCIe slot. From that PCIe slot, a powered riser could be attached to host a video card.

One such system that could act as a candidate for this idea would be a 4th Gen iGPU-only Dell E6440.

So the question then is, would you be prepared to make an adapter that slots into the CPU socket that (1) passed through the CPU pins and (2) provides a PCIe socket attaching to the Northbridge x16 slot?. You could do with it being say x8 2.0 to reduce wiring. Ivy Bridge does have a PCIe 3.0 northbridge so if could get the signal integrity up that could be a x8 3.0 link.

A schematic of a 3rd gen system with dGPU attached (for pin reference) is at pg6 of https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9ENsVPn8E_lR2Q1X3dOMzV6a2s/view

This idea could be applied to an iGPU-only system or a system with an iGPU + MXM (detachable) dGPU. Systems with a iGPU + (soldered) dGPU could not do this unless the dGPU could be soldered off since would be using the same pins.

Your thoughts? Certainly a different approach to eGPUs that could get more performance. The adapter itself would be rather simple BUT needs the precision to make it that BPlus has the expertise to do.

Nando

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Then again the hurdle to get eGPUs may be answered with 32Gbps-TB3 (x4 3.0) : http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/10147-intel-unveils-thunderbolt-3-0-mentions-external-graphics.html released with the Skylake platform ETA 2016.

If your request with Bplus gets answered we may have x4/x8 3.0 with Ivy bridge socketed machines @ much lower prices...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sent an email to BPlus requesting expression of interest in making a PCIe adapter hosted off the CPU

Based on that, I would assume that mobile CPUs are detachable? That seems to be supported by the fact that online suppliers sell laptop M/B's without their CPUs.

Having a CPU - PCIe x8 adapter seems like a pretty great, easily marketable idea! However, I can't help but think that the adapter being fitted in between the CPU and the M/B would raise the height of the CPU, which would be an issue because of the cooling system that's above the CPU.

Do you think this could be fixed by simply bending the tubes, or something else?

I'm really looking forward to this! When do you think they might respond, in a few days/weeks?

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, don't you think it would be easier for those with dGPUs, to desolder their GPUs, and make an adapter GPU?

For example, a dGPU blank that has a PCIe x16 3.0 riser coming from it? This should be feasible since the dGPU itself is connected to the CPU with that connection, and so you should be able to salvage in that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Also, don't you think it would be easier for those with dGPUs, to desolder their GPUs, and make an adapter GPU?

For example, a dGPU blank that has a PCIe x16 3.0 riser coming from it? This should be feasible since the dGPU itself is connected to the CPU with that connection, and so you should be able to salvage in that way.

How many different GPUs are there? Then how many blanks would need to be made? Consider also the complexity of such a mod where the dGPU is hijaaked: systemboard removed, dGPU desoldered with specialist equipment and (likely) requires a BIOS mod containing a different VBIOS. You then have a very limited market. Not to say I'd love to see it done. Just that the market simply isn't there. BPlus would probably get a negative return on their time invested to make such blanks.

Besides, the more markettable CPU interposer idea can apply to the dGPU models as well. Either the dGPU gets desoldered or the *maybe* the power lines to it cut. I say maybe because at 5Gbps, the PCie lines would be sensitive to reflective noise if unterminated with matching impedance.

Though the CPU idea has a limited market space as well. There are predominantly soldered CPUs on notebooks these days.

Thankfully, Intel will be supporting eGPUs in the Skylake platform. Unless such mods can be cost effective and easily implemented it might be worth just waiting till 2016 to get one of these new TB3-equipped notebooks instead. http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/10147-intel-unveils-thunderbolt-3-0-mentions-external-graphics-skylake-2016-a.html

  • Thumbs Up 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, I see. I don't know why I didn't think of that.

Personally, I initially got interested in eGPUs because of cost efficiency. However, since I am a computer engineering major, the fun of it has kept me going, haha. I think I would probably build a desktop before buying a TB3-equipped notebook, simply because I could make it much more powerful.

However, if BPlus says it's possible to make that adapter, do you think space would be an issue or not?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool, I talked to nando in private about having a thin pcb/socket that sits between the CPU and the CPU socket to get PCI-E signals, and even about soldering to broken GPU Dell Inspirion 5110, and then this thread pops up. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
CRAP, did you try to solder directly onto your CPU port?!

Sent from my X9076 using Tapatalk

yeah thats ughh although i used right tools to desolder dgpu chip but @ finally Thankx GOD my mobo still works with iGPU :/,

Not yet cuz im not surely knw what specifically cpu ports pins to solder pcie pins on it but i hope to be done with this way + it will be better than dgpu way cuz benefit will be full x16 instead of dgpu x8 port.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
yeah thats ughh although i used right tools to desolder dgpu chip but @ finally Thankx GOD my mobo still works with iGPU :/,

Not yet cuz im not surely knw what specifically cpu ports pins to solder pcie pins on it but i hope to be done with this way + it will be better than dgpu way cuz benefit will be full x16 instead of dgpu x8 port.

That sounds really fun, hahaha, I don't know if I'd ever do it, though [emoji14]

However, if I was you, I'd buy a motherboard for my laptop's specific model off of eBay, and try to make a PCIe connection from the dGPU of the new motherboard. That way, if anything gets screwed up, the actual laptop will still be fine. They usually cost between $100 - $250, but you pay for safety [emoji14]

Sent from my X9076 using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

U can just buy specific mobo dnt need new laptop & it will cost much less bout 45 ~ 50 usd , my laptop mobo cost ~41 usd w/o dGPU = Clear balls for solder but in the end no $$$ nw lol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
U can just buy specific mobo dnt need new laptop & it will cost much less bout 45 ~ 50 usd , my laptop mobo cost ~41 usd w/o dGPU = Clear balls for solder but in the end no $$$ nw lol.

That's actually what I meant, but I may have miscommunicated. My laptop's mobo costs about $150, so you're lucky [emoji14]

What laptop do you have?

Sent from my X9076 using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's funny that I stumbled into this thread today.... I've been playing with the same idea for awhile, and I literally just bought a replacement motherboard with no dGPU to try ;P

But I can top all of you. My replacement motherboard was $15 with free shipping. (Crappy, i3 version vs. my nice i5, which costs $50...)

I'll watch this thread, and post any results I get. But I probably won't have significant time to work on this for awhile :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Similar Content

    • By djdblaster
      Hello guys, 

      I've got 2 graphics cards - 7970M's. I believe one card is Revision 1.1 and the other one is Revision 1.2 because it has double row of capacitors as described here: http://forum.notebookreview.com/threads/amd-hd-7970m-revision-through-software.788469/ 

      Laptop is XMG P702 Pro (P170EM). I bought it with 7970M (Rev 1.2) from a guy who said he played a game and laptop just went BSOD. Since then, the card doesn't work properly. Win 8 was installed, I removed it and installed Windows 7 so it's easier to boot in Safe Mode.

      Things I have tried so far:
       
      - with XMG BIOS (version 1.02.17)
      1) BIOS recognizes the GPU - 7970M
      2) Safe Mode works, I see the GPU, if drivers installed it is 7970M, if not, then Standard VGA Graphics Adapter, I can run DDU no problem
      3) Windows detects the GPU under Display Adapters as Standard VGA Graphics Adapter
      4) I have tried different AMD drivers, some of them install the drivers with no problems in Windows and the GPU shows as 7970M with no warnings or such, some show black screen during installation. Clevo 7970M.zip (believe driver is 9.1.0.0) package from Clevo website installs normally and during Windows loading screen, I see the mouse and after few seconds I see the black screen with top left underscore blinking. I also hear the Windows welcome sound. (Tested with Teamviewer autostart from my PC, I see the desktop, but it's like Minecraft, whenever I drag mouse around, it creates some blocks)

      - with latest PREMA BIOS (version 1.02.17PM v2)
      1) After installing Clevo 7970M.zip driver, laptop boots to Windows and 7970M shows Code 43 in Device Manager.
      2) Safe Mode works, DDU too, 7970M shows up when drivers installed, Standard VGA Graphics Adapter when not installed.

      Now with the second 7970M... Revision 1.1. 
      1) doesn't pass POST screen with old BIOS
      2) doesn't pass POST screen with PREMA BIOS (I press F2 and it shows as selected, but just hangs on it at that moment)
      3) laptop starts beeping and shutdowns
      Note: 7970M has been tested in Alienware 17 R1, BIOS shows 7970M, Windows show 7970M, drivers installed, all good.
      Question: does Rev. 1.1 work in P170EM? If so, could it be wrong VBIOS?

      P.S. After checking out physically 7970M Rev. 1.2, I found everything to be messy around the double row of capacitors, especially one bridge so I decided to remove it and make everything clean, but later I found in the first link I posted, there should actually be a bridge? Acted too fast, stupid... (I have quality soldering station, hot air station and microscope). I didn't examine the GPU at first, I tried all the methods above, didn't work, then I proceeded with desoldering the bridge and trying again the GPU. Didn't work either. I can resolder the bridge if necessary?

      I can give you pictures from the GPU's, VBIOS or anything else that you might think could be useful. 
      If it turns out 7970M Rev. 1.1 needs another VBIOS, I was thinking of getting EEPROM Programmer, desoldering the GPU BIOS chip and flashing new (compatible) one to it. Ideas?

      P.S. #2 if anyone could drop a hint on what to physically check on the 7970M Rev. 1.2, that would be great. I googled the black screen problem and could it be that voltage regulator is blown? I don't mind resoldering another one.
    • By kos
      Hi there,
       
      just a short thread to give you some inspirations. My setup consists of:
       
      Macbook Pro Retina 15" Late 2013 OSX + Windows 10
      EVGA GeForce GTX 960 Superclocked ACX 2
      Akitio Thunder2 PCIe Box
      Dell-DA2 PSU
      Dell U2311H Display 
      Samsung TV and Onkyo Receiver
      Steam Link
      XBOX One Controller / XBOX 360 Controller
      Apple Thunderbolt Gigabit-Ethernet Adapter
       
      I spend almost 30€ on Adapters and Cables, Crimps etc just to find out that it does not work well and it does not take much to get a sleek and simple design. You just have to be brave enough and willing to cut the Dell PSU
       

       
      The cut Dell-PSU. White is 12V, black GND, blue needs to be shorted against GND, red is not required and can be cut or isolated. I don't know whats that blank is for, so I just cut it. There is some additional cable from 1x 12V and 1x GND to be connected to the Akitio's Power Supply, I don't use the Barrel-Plug anymore. 
       

       
      I drilled a hole (about 10mm width) right above the Power Connection. Intelligent people put the cable through the housing first, other (like me) have to force it
       
       
       

       
      Cables go under the board, there is about 1 cm of free space. Now it's time to solder the boards power supply. (No pictured) 
       
       
       

       
      The tiny pins can be bought at Ebay ("PCI-E Pins"/ "PSU Power Connector Pins"). There are also "Wire End Sleeves"with crimp-able necks available which might work as well but I didn't try them. You might give them a try too
       
       
       
      .
       
      Doesn't look good but fits well. I use the lower plastic parts of one PCI-E 8 Pin Power Adapter to make the Pins fit in there, otherwise they would slip out the plug. 
       
       
       

       
      Holes drilled for better cooling. The front Fan is still connected and blows air into the housing. The GPU Fan presses it out through the selfmade holes.
       
       
       

       
      Final and simple Setup, I'am streaming the games over network to my Steam Link. I still need to try if I can connect the TB-Ethernet Adapter to the back of the Akito.
       
       
       
      best regards 
      kos
       
       
×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.