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Zbook 17 G2 - a few questions

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Hi, I'm going to buy the new Zbook 17 G2, but I have a few questions.

1. Do you know if the Nvidia can be switched off for longer battery life?

2. What are your impressions on the keyboard - I didn't like it but maybe you can get used to it?

3. The Bios allows for "disable Hyperthreading" and disable "Multi Core CPU" - can you explain how these options work. I'm a cad user and I could benefit from non-hyperthreaded CPU a lot!

4. Do you think that the M.2 SSD is well cooled - what are your temps?

5. How about the cooling in general? - it has only one fan?\

6. What about the battery detaching mechanism - it seems quite flimsy with two small plastic holders that are bound to snap after a few months.

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Hmm.. have been using a ZBook 17 G2. Admittedly, more as a desktop replacement with external keyboard, mouse, eGPU and LCD attached. The NVidia dGPU can be ran in either dedicated mode (dGPU, no iGPU) or in Optimus mode (iGPU + dGPU) via a bios setting. Have no M.2 SSD to comment. Cooling is OK. I can just get my i7-4810QM to run overclocked to 4GHz-4core mode withouth thermal throttling if I underclock the CPU. TDP settings can be increased using Throttlestop.

Warning though, the expresscard slot is not functional. If purchasing one this could be an avenue to get compensation from HP for misadvertising if it's something you wanted to use. At the very least, could get a Sonnet Echoexpress Pro Thunderbolt-to-expresscard adapter so could use the Thunderbolt2 port to host expresscard devices. See more at http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/9502-warning-hp-zbook-15-17-g2-has-non-functional-expresscard-slot.html

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Please elaborate - I didn't get the overclocking part. How do you overclock a locked multiplier CPU? Does disabling hyperthreading allow for higher clock speeds? Can you give more details on your e-gpu solution?

Sent from my LG-D802 using Tapatalk

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I haven't used a Zbook at all but I'll answer what I can.

1. Laptops have switchable graphics so the videocard turns on and off as needed. For example Nvidia Optimus.

2. I actually enjoy chiclet style keyboards on laptops. I guess you get used to them.

3. Why would you disable hyperthreading? I cannot see how having less threads will make your performance go up. It's the same CPU, you aren't doing a comparison of a non-HT but super fast quad core vs a HT-capable but slightly slower CPU. It's the same chip, just keep HT on, it doesn't save you anything to turn it off.

4. Overall the whole system is well cooled:

HP ZBook 17 G2 J8Z55ET Workstation Review - NotebookCheck.net Reviews

Those are pretty impressive temperatures. I know M.2 SSDs can run pretty warm with low airflow. But I don't think you should worry about it. Plus, that bottom cover is full vented over the M.2 slots.

5. See #4, cooling is quite good. That's a pretty beefy fan in there. And, most laptops only have one fan.

6. How brutal are you ripping your battery in and out??? And why would you take it in and out so often you are so concerned? I used to work in a computer repair shop for a couple years, I've never had this problem come up. With all the laptops HP has made, I'm sure they have figured out how to keep a battery locked in.

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Manu CAD applications (autocad) use only one thread! In autocad I have 12.5% usage of my quad core 8 thread CPU, which means that the application only uses half of the core! That's probably the reason to include the option in bios, I just wanted to know if it works. So yes - there are some usage scenarios, where I'd want HT off.

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Wow that ninja posts while typing my replies.

----

Please elaborate - I didn't get the overclocking part. How do you overclock a locked multiplier CPU? Does disabling hyperthreading allow for higher clock speeds? Can you give more details on your e-gpu solution?

Not all xxxxQM CPUs are locked. Some of the nicer models are unlocked.

Maybe?? However, disabling HT will not help you get higher performance. Plus, you remove half your usable threads, so that hurts you way more than any minute gain you might ever achieve with disabling HT.

---

Manu CAD applications (autocad) use only one thread! In autocad I have 12.5% usage of my quad core 8 thread CPU, which means that the application only uses half of the core! That's probably the reason to include the option in bios, I just wanted to know if it works. So yes - there are some usage scenarios, where I'd want HT off.

So how is HT hurting you here? If it's using one thread, it's using one thread. The fact you have other threads doesn't divide the performance.

Let's say you have a 3.0GHz HT-capable dual core since I'm lazy and don't want to type too much. You have this with HT off

3.0 GHz thread

3.0 GHz thread

You run your CAD application:

3.0 GHz thread (CAD)

3.0 GHz thread (for all the other random background tasks)

Now lets enable HT:

3.0 GHz thread (CAD)

3.0 GHz thread (other background things)

3.0 GHz thread (music?)

3.0 GHz thread (web browser?)

You can spread it around, your clock speed doesn't divide with more threads (kinda). There is a max core ratio multiplier with a certain number of ACTIVE cores. So like:

HT-off:

3.0 GHz thread (active)

(inactive thread)

HT-on:

3.0 GHz thread (active)

(inactive)

(inactive)

(inactive)

Now with more active threads

HT-off:

2.9 GHz (active)

2.9 GHz (active)

HT-on:

2.7 GHz (active)

2.7 GHz (active)

2.7 GHz (active)

2.7 GHz (active)

While they are slower, you are getting a whole lot more done overall.

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Well then, it seems I shouldn't worry about HT that much then.

Can you tell me if the 4810QM is unlocked - that would be super cool, as I'm probably going to get this cpu.

I was wondering if I should save a bit on video card and get the Radeon M6100 - it's supposedly on par with the quadro K3100M but I'm not sure if it's a really good choice. (it's cheaper, that's for sure).

I could also get a machine without the Zdrive if that's not such a great performance bottleneck, I could use a regular SSD and get an m.2 SSD later if I need one. I could save the money on the Zdrive and get a traditional SSD double the size for the same money. I could, of course get the 256GB Turbo Zdrive and just put two of my 1tb WD Blue's in RAID.

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Well then, it seems I shouldn't worry about HT that much then.

Can you tell me if the 4810QM is unlocked - that would be super cool, as I'm probably going to get this cpu.

I was wondering if I should save a bit on video card and get the Radeon M6100 - it's supposedly on par with the quadro K3100M but I'm not sure if it's a really good choice. (it's cheaper, that's for sure).

I could also get a machine without the Zdrive if that's not such a great performance bottleneck, I could use a regular SSD and get an m.2 SSD later if I need one. I could save the money on the Zdrive and get a traditional SSD double the size for the same money. I could, of course get the 256GB Turbo Zdrive and just put two of my 1tb WD Blue's in RAID.

Yeah, I just leave HT and enjoy the threads.

Yes the 4810MQ is unlocked.

Since you are doing CAD work, check with programs you use to make sure they work with your card correctly. Some things work better with AMD and others work better with Nvidia. You should pick one that suits your programs best.

Guessing Zdrive is the HP name for the M.2 SSD? Personally I always get the cheapest drives possible from the manufacturer (since I always clean install any new computer anyways). I find it a lot cheaper to buy and install the better drives myself. I take what they supply the computer with, format it, and make it a secondary drive (or external). Do you have any programs that use a lot of disk IO? If you don't then you don't really need the M.2, although since you would have two slots, it is nice for fast storage. Also double check to make sure if the M.2 slots are SATA based or PCIe based (same with the SSD).

For PCIe M.2 drives, the Samsung SM951 is super nice. There are two versions, the ACHI and the NVMe. The NVMe version is newer and can be tricky to get a hold of, but motherboard support can be iffy for NVMe.

I'm not sure for SATA based M.2, I never cared to look since my M.2 slots are SATA based.

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The HP m.2 slot is PCI-E Based, thus leaving me with very little choice of aftermarket SSD's. I got an acceptable offer, 1800 Euro excl. VAT or about 2100 EURO with VAT for G2 17", 4810MQ, 256 GB PCI-E M.2 and 750GB (or was it 1 tb) HDD. The machine comes with k3100m and 2x4 RAM, but I have one 8GB stick that I can use and probably get another 8GB to make it 24GB total. I was wondering if I can go cheaper with m6100 and only HDD included from HP and get the upgrades cheaper from local resellers (I could easily save for 512GB or even 1TB SSD).

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The HP m.2 slot is PCI-E Based, thus leaving me with very little choice of aftermarket SSD's. I got an acceptable offer, 1800 Euro excl. VAT or about 2100 EURO with VAT for G2 17", 4810MQ, 256 GB PCI-E M.2 and 750GB (or was it 1 tb) HDD. The machine comes with k3100m and 2x4 RAM, but I have one 8GB stick that I can use and probably get another 8GB to make it 24GB total. I was wondering if I can go cheaper with m6100 and only HDD included from HP and get the upgrades cheaper from local resellers (I could easily save for 512GB or even 1TB SSD).

Nice, glad it's a PCIe based M.2 slot. Yes the aftermarket options for it are limited, but at least you can get the Samsung SM951 on Amazon (at least in the US).

Did you check with the CAD applications you use to see if they prefer AMD or Nvidia?

I would go with the best GPU you can reasonably afford. Then get the drives + RAM separately (unless HP is giving a reasonable price on RAM).

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Well then, I guess I'm going to get the 17 G2 - it seems to tick all the boxes for me. I'll take a look at the 6800m too, but it seems the HP has an edge with pricing and availability where I live.

There is only one thing more - I spoke with HP representative and they were glad to answer my questions. They also said, the G3 is just behind the corner and due October 2015, with Nvidia Maxwell on board. I'm really tempted to get the G2 now, but I'm wondering if I should wait.

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Well then, I guess I'm going to get the 17 G2 - it seems to tick all the boxes for me. I'll take a look at the 6800m too, but it seems the HP has an edge with pricing and availability where I live.

There is only one thing more - I spoke with HP representative and they were glad to answer my questions. They also said, the G3 is just behind the corner and due October 2015, with Nvidia Maxwell on board. I'm really tempted to get the G2 now, but I'm wondering if I should wait.

ZBook G3 ETA of Oct 2015 is entirely possible given that the desktop Skylake (6th gen i-core) have just been released: Intel launches 6th generation "Skylake" processors . The eGPU ppl are particularly looking forward to the 40Gbps Thunderbolt3 interface using USB-C connectors scheduled to be released with the Skylake platform. There we'll see a x4 3.0 link to the video cards, giving true real desktop-level graphics performance.

I'd suggest waiting the couple of months for the G3.

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It turns out I don't have enough cash available as we'll need to fund soem other stuff so I'll have to wait. Until then I'll probably get rid of my M14xR2 and get something cheap like a Dell m4600 or a HP 8760w.

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Hi!

I just got a free Zbook 15 G2 - 4810M + 16GB ram + K1100M + (my own 512 SSD EVO 850)

I'm now thinking that I could just sell my old 1366 socket - E5620 Xeon and make this laptop my new gaming Rig.

From your words:

Seems like I would need:

GPU * - I already have 780Ti. I hope it works

AKiTio Thunder 2

My doubts:

HDPLEX - Do I need this?

We have plenty 230W adapters here in the office from previous HP's Zbooks and 8770W versions

Cant I just use one of those?

I'm not understanding the need of the HDPLEX / Power adapters the adapters.

My last doubts:

I will mostly use this with my external home projector or lcd. However, if I go a week out of the country (I travel a little bit), is this solution working with internal laptop screen? (mostly probably not, but I had to ask)

Ohhh.. and this laptop brings a K1100m. So, I hope it works with the 780ti. Otherwise I might get a R9 Nano. Does this works with HD4600 hybrid swaps?

Thanks a lot!<!-- google_ad_section_end -->

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Edit: I had some questions but made a new topic for them.

 Haven't found a way to delete this post... Sorry.

Edited by 3RYL

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