Friday, 10 July 2009

Dell Inspiron 9100 Internals part 2: Video card

Part 1 of pulling-apart my laptop is here.

In this part I'm showing pictures of the video card before and after removal.

Here is the exposed shot again:
At the top left you can see two sets of cooling fins with a copper pipe running diagonally to a daughter board. This board is my ATI Mobility Radeon 9700 M10 with 64Mb RAM (woohoo!). Other options are the Mobility 9700 with 128Mb RAM, and the Mobility 9800. (I wish I had the 9800...)

Below the heat sinks on the far left is a fan. One heat sink transfers heat from the video card (furtherest back) via the copper pipe you can see. The other heat sink transfers heat from the CPU via a copper pipe that runs under the video card. You can just see it running parallel to the back edge.

Follow the Dell instructions for removing the video card (and my disclaimer) in Post 1. It looks like this:
You can see the copper transfer pipe, and the cooling fins. Copper is excellent at transferring heat! You'll see why in Part 3.

The next photo shows what the system board looks like without the video card!
You can now clearly see the CPU heat transfer pipe, as well as a third copper pipe under the video card. The third pipe looks like its attached to the northbridge heat sink. This third pipe runs diagonally to the CPU cooler, and ends in a small aluminium heat transfer block under the black plastic cover you can see.

The video card slot is visible next the the fan. Kudos to Dell and other laptop manufacturers for making laptops almost as modular as desktops, however replacement video cards are hundreds of dollars! I can't find any cheap second hand parts. If you can, let me know!


Plastic Card said...

This is good guidelines about different video cards. The third one card which is without to the video card what are you talking about....This is nice ideas i have no ideas of the replacement of the video card.

Iain said...

Plastic Card: In the third photo the video card is removed. You can see a white connector running vertical to the photo, on the left hand side near the fan. That's where the video card plugs in.

Anonymous said...

I tried to clean my cooling assembly from dust but I canot lift off the processor, it is stucked to the cooling assembley.
I have heated it upp by a hairdryer but it does not help.

Iain said...

Have a read of Part 3. You should try and remove it while the machine is warm (from use).

If you are using a hair dryer, make sure you don't point it directly at the CPU or any other parts, only point it at a copper pipe or heat sink.

I used a heat gun, which may have worked faster than your average hair dryer. You should be able to feel the heat sink over the CPU get warm, but not too hot to touch.

Once it's warm, there may still be some resistance to removing the heat sink. You can try a thin plastic edge (like an old credit card) to "crack" the seal, but be VERY careful, you can damage your CPU with static or force.

Hope this helps!

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