Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Laptops, PDAs, Cell Phones, and all other tech that you carry with you.

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Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:26 am

I have a friend said his graphics card was broken and was looking for recommendations for a new one. Naturally, I said, "Send an email with the relevant specs and I'll let you know." He sent this:

"I have an Asus laptop. 4G ram, runs Vista, nVidia GeForce 9800m 512mb video card (which is the broken component)."

Uh oh! Never replaced a laptop graphics card, so I'm looking for advice. Is it possible (I'm suspicious that the card might be soldered onto the board), and if so, is it worth the time/effort/expense? (I looked at Newegg and Amazon and didn't even see mobile graphics cards for sale.) He's not a tech guy, so he didn't know more specifically. Sounds like the laptop is from 2008 or so (judging by the graphics card).

Thanks!
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:42 am

No, it's not possible. No, it's not worth it.
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:52 am

The notebook's graphics card can pretty much only be replaced with cards specific to a few models. Replacement Asus MXM II graphics cards can be hard to find. This guide may give you an idea of what's involved:
http://forum.notebookreview.com/asus/45 ... -card.html
http://forum.notebookreview.com/asus-ga ... guide.html

Here are two listed on the auction site:
http://cgi.ebay.com/New-Asus-G50VT-G94- ... 3f04f2f8d0
http://cgi.ebay.com/New-Asus-G50VT-NSZV ... 3f04f5a535
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:45 pm

In theory, it is sometimes possible. In practice, it is very difficult. You pretty much have to get one of the cards that was exactly the one that was offered in that model when it was new; even slight differences can make it incompatible or cause driver issues. Ideally you pull a working one out of an identical laptop that was broken in some other way; otherwise, you're at the mercy (and pricing) of the vendor's replacement parts offerings, if they exist.

But what makes you so sure the graphics card is "broken"? Just the opinion of "not a tech guy" who thinks that is the case?
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 2:51 pm

laptops become outdated faster than desktops
I am sure you can get a new laptop for 500$ or less that would be better than a laptop 2 years ago
so shop around first before replacing any parts from a manufacturer
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:06 pm

potatochobit wrote:I am sure you can get a new laptop for 500$ or less that would be better than a laptop 2 years ago.
I challenge you to provide a link to a new $500 laptop with a 1680x1050 display, a dual-core 64-bit processor and a GeForce 9800M GS (or better) GPU for less than $500.
http://www.asus.com/product.aspx?P_ID=fdhHRbJtRlOCqy5C
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:16 pm

potatochobit
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:20 pm

What's the resolution on that display, and can you buy it for that price today?
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:35 pm

most sony laptops are 1600x900 or 1366x768

you know when I made that comment I didnt mean you can compare ASUS's top of the line gaming PC to the cheapest entry level notebook available today
i think you are not giving current gen IGPs enough credit. that G50Vt or whatever is a porker and I really doubt the FPS difference is going to be that much more noticeable over a 9800GS.
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:45 pm

swampfox wrote:"I have an Asus laptop. 4G ram, runs Vista, nVidia GeForce 9800m 512mb video card (which is the broken component)."
That sounds very much like the G50Vt to me, unless it's a similar G73 variant.

I use mine for gaming while I'm traveling.
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:25 pm

UberGerbil wrote:But what makes you so sure the graphics card is "broken"? Just the opinion of "not a tech guy" who thinks that is the case?


Unfortunately, nothing makes me sure that it is broken. Just him. We're not even in the same state, so I just offered to help over the internet. Sounds like I might not be able to do much though. :)
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:32 pm

Well, what are the symptoms? If he's seeing artifacts / corrupt video, it could be overheating due to dustbunnies for example.
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Re: Is a laptop graphics card replaceable?

Postposted on Mon Jan 10, 2011 1:46 am

If it turns on but is overheating (causing artifacts in games), cleaning the laptop case and possibly reseating the heatsink with better thermal paste could help. This stuff works pretty good:

http://www.heatsinkfactory.com/ic-diamo ... 16605.html
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