Fujitsu Celsius H920 teardown

Viestiketju alueella 'Kannettavat tietokoneet' , aloittaja Lagittaja, 02.02.2018.

  1. Lagittaja

    Lagittaja

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    Kirjoittelen tämän englanniksi kun kyseessä ei ole ihan niin yleinen raahattava niin ajattelin että puhutumpi kieli parempi valinta. Ja oletan että suurinosa tekkiläisistä sitä ymmärtää.

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    As I haven't found any proper teardown articles or videos of the Fujitsu Celsius H920, I decided to get into mine for the benefit of mankind. Or something.
    Especially the lack of pictures was mildly irritating.

    Posting this here (and maybe elsewhere) in the hope that those few people who are looking for this information may find their way here through Google search or whatever they're using.

    This will probably be 3 (or maybe 4) parts long and I may or may not do a full blown, remove-everything-from-scratch video someday but for now here's some pictures, I did take quite a few.

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    Part 1: how to get access to the CPU/GPU coolers and other bits and bobs underneath the laptop. (Difficulty level: rather easy, Time: probably 10 minutes)

    It's just a matter of removing couple dozen screws along with the obvious: DIMM slot cover, 2.5" drives and their covers, ExpressCard dummy card as well as the battery.
    All the various screws and their (rough) locations marked:
    upload_2018-2-3_12-51-40.png

    The bottom lifts off quite easily, I started from the front edge of the laptop which has the thinnest parts of the bottom cover, especially around the ODD bay. So go easy.
    Keep in mind that this laptop has a dock connector towards the back which is surrounded by EMI shielding ground "lugs" so as you're prying it off it might make an "unpleasant" scraping sound as those release from around it (blue box around them).
    There's probably a way to lift the bottom cover straight away from the laptop but mine was being stubborn so I had to resort to a little bit of force and lift from one side till the "lugs" and the rest of the cover released.. But no harm done.​
    upload_2018-2-2_14-36-5.png

    And we're in like sin.
    upload_2018-2-2_15-0-15.png

    And that's pretty much it. No real point to show how to remove the CPU cooler and such, use your common sense and hopefully experience to get around this laptop. It's not rocket science.

    Here's an Imgur gallery with 50+ pictures of the bottom of the laptop covering the motherboard and various PCB's and such from different angles. Enjoy.

    In part 2 I'll document how to remove the keyboard and the upper ledge. This will give you access to the miniPCIe slots (yes, plural, there's 2) and the two remaining DIMM slots along with the display hinges for example.
    I've been in there before and I have some pictures but they're not good enough so I'll hold off on that for now. I've been meaning to upgrade the WiFi from dual band 802.11n to 802.11ac for a while so that's when I'll probably do this. It won't be soon though.

    In part 3 I'll probably go back in through the bottom of the laptop, remove both of the coolers and take a looksie at the other side of the motherboard.

    ---

    I did of course remove the CPU cooler as I wanted to take a gander of what the TIM application looks like.

    This particular laptop has the Core i7-3720qm which is a proper quad core with HT, a 45W TDP work horse.
    Quite skookum and this laptop does hold the turbo reasonably well under intense load, about 3.2Ghz on all cores and seemingly for quite a long time.

    However as I was testing the CPU cooling a while back, I noticed that with intense loads the CPU did get uncomfortably hot and fast.
    Make no mistake, ~45W worth of heat for an itty bitty copper heatsink like that is quite a lot so I don't expect it to be cool as a cucumber nor expect the jump from idle to full tilt to be slow.​
    But with a rather silly synthetic load, IntelBurnTest on Very High, I was seeing the cores jumping up to and over 90*C pretty much instantly and very shortly the poor thing was hitting TjMax.

    Let's take a look, shall we?
    upload_2018-2-2_15-17-29.png

    Well, that's not as bad as I was expecting but that's not good either.
    Part of the CPU had very little if any contact to the copper base and probably air pockets.
    While the amount of paste, well, I've seen worse. Notice how the paste had almost ran off the PCB of the CPU on to the motherboard.

    PSA: if you're replacing the thermal paste and you're applying it to a bare die, cover it completely. Too much thermal paste doesn't hurt as long as you're not being silly e.g. emptying a whole syringe on there but covering every corner of the die is very important in my opinion.
    You can use a credit/whatever card or a plastic spudger or whatever you find handy to do it. If you really don't have anything but the TIM syringe, you can use it's tip to spread the paste around. Hell, a finger will do in a pinch if you don't mind it getting covered with TIM.

    So, what did the temperatures or clockspeeds look like after?
    To recap, the CPU holds on to 3.2Ghz turbo on all cores, it momentarily might kick one core down to 3.1Ghz according to HWMonitor but realistically it keeps the 3.2Ghz 99.9% of the time.
    Using IntelBurnTest on Very High settings again, the cores were hitting maximum 84-84-91-88 after one round of IBT or around 2 minutes in to the test. Package max was 91.
    After three rounds or around 5-6 minutes in to the test, the maximum numbers were 88-91-96-93 and package 96. This is where it seemed to stabilise.

    Not so bad considering it's holding 3.2Ghz under that kind of load which this laptop rarely sees. And that heatsink is just puny.
    And keep in mind these are the maximum numbers which the CPU hits for a split second.

    I'm going to call that a success. It's no longer hitting TjMax.
    The above however is quite an unrealistic load.
    Thankfully, I have ran PCMark 10 Extended on this laptop before I reapplied the TIM and PCMark does log the temperatures. (yey)
    All I need to do is run it again so we'll have a pretty good comparison. I'll do that later today.

    Edit: So I did run the Extended test again.
    The overall extended score didn't change much, from 2562 to 2609.
    Essentials from 6758 to 6895 (+2.02%) while productivity went from 4881 to 5118 (+4.85%) which is nice.
    Digital Content Creation went from 2137 to 2149 (+0.56%) which is well within margin of error and Gaming (obviously) didn't change, 1652 vs 1651.

    The big thing is that the CPU isn't hitting TjMax anymore, maximum temp now was 87C briefly during the Rendering test when before it hit 104-105C.
    Another example is the Photo Editing test when before it was peaking up to 98-99C and now it's only going up to 82C.
    [​IMG]

    I'd show the nice graphs here that PCMark 10 logs but as stupid as it sounds, they're not to the same scale AND when you compare them it doesn't show them on the same graph and they're still on different scales. Booo Futuremark, boo!
    If you're really interested then you can find the result files attached to this post inside an uncompressed zip.
     

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  2. Lagittaja

    Lagittaja

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    Varaan tämän tulevaisuutta varten.
     
  3. Dacoco

    Dacoco

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    Thank you for this great teardown guide of the H920! :)

    One question - Would you mind measuring if a Hard Disk Drive with 15mm height (e.g. WD 2TB 2,5") would fit in at least one of the two bays or even in both?

    I would really appreciate it.

    Thank you
     
  4. Lagittaja

    Lagittaja

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    Welcome to the forum! And you're more than welcome, glad that there's someone who benefits from the pictures.

    I don't mind measuring but even without measuring I can tell you that a 15mm 2.5" won't fit.
    But I did go ahead and take a couple of measurements with pictures, see them attached to this post.​

    See Notebookcheck.net's review, scroll down ~ quarter of the way down to where it says Warranty before Input Devices section begins and to the right you should see an image captioned "All important components are easy to access".
    Review Fujitsu Celsius H920 Notebook

    Let's tackle the bays one at a time
    1) The center HDD bay. The drive is "upside down" and the HDD cage is "above" the drive. See my picture (first one), I have a 7mm thick SSD in there. Note the gap between it and the chassis. If there was a 9.5mm drive, the gap would be closed. So 9.5mm is the thickest you can fit because when the Z-height grows the SATA connectors stay in the same place.
    2) The "left" HDD bay. The drive is the "right way up" and the HDD cage would (I don't have it) be "below" the drive. See my picture (third one), I think the HDD in there is also a 7mm one and the same kind of applies here, the bay was designed with the cage in mind so despite there being a gap below the drive it won't be used by the drive itself as the taller drives just increase height in one direction.

    So I'll say 9.5mm is the thickest.
    MAYBE a 12.5mm might fit in the "left bay" but I don't have one to try and it would be a really tight squeeze.
     

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  5. Dacoco

    Dacoco

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    Hi Lagittaja,

    thank you VERY much for this extensive Review and the Pictures. Great to see that there are still Forums where people actually help each other :)
    So i suppose i will use a 1 TB 9,5mm then. There are 2TB Seagate HDDs with 7,5mm but they are SMR and i don't like that.

    As you said there are two mini PCI Express Slots - would it be possible to use 2x 9,5mm HDDs in both bays and a mini PCI Express SSD here?

    And do you know if it is possible to replace the ODD with a HDD? But i suppose there would be a Maximum height of 9,5mm also as the device isn't that high.

    Thanks
    Have a great day
     
  6. Lagittaja

    Lagittaja

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    No problem again.

    I don't like SMR either but if I'm honest then the storage needs sounded a bit more like archival or long-er term storage where the speeds wouldn't be that big of an issue.

    Although are you aware of the Seagate (/Samsung) M9T hard drives? They're 9.5mm but up to 2TB. And still PMR.
    Hard Disk Drives (HDD) mit Formfaktor: 2.5", Gesamtkapazität ab 1.5TB, Bauhöhe 2.5": 9.5mm, Aufnahmeverfahren: non-SMR Preisvergleich | geizhals.eu EU
    Samsung Spinpoint M9T Hard Drive Review | StorageReview.com - Storage Reviews

    As far as the mini PCIe slots go, I'm not quite sure but I'll still say no to that. (As far as I know they're intended for wireless and mobile broadband cards so don't think they support mSATA or such)

    Yes you can replace the ODD with a 2.5" drive. You just need an adapter which you can get from Ebay for few dollars. (FYI the H920 uses a 12.7mm ODD.)
    These adapters claim you can use a 12.5mm drive in them but I'm not sure about that. Even if you could, 12.5mm drives aren't that common and they're still not bigger than 1TB.

    P.S. You've mainly been talking about HDD's, are you not going to have an SSD in the laptop?
     
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  7. Dacoco

    Dacoco

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    I did a little research about the Samsung drives which are Seagate now. Unfortunately Seagate are the only ones with thin 2,5" drives and the statistics aren't really good regarding durability. But thank you for the suggestion. Maybe i'll alternatively go with a 1TB SSHD + 1TB HDD from WD. I'm still not sure about that.

    About the ODD Drive. I searched on eBay but did only find generic bays. Do you think this one will fit?
    AliExpress Cheap Bay

    I think the same about the mini PCIe Slots. Even on my Dell 27" AllInOne i can't use these slots for a SSD.

    About the SSD Thing. I have a 256GB SSD (7mm) i want to use in one bay. The other bay (maybe additionally the odd bay) should be storage.
    So a combination of SSD 7mm in Bay 1, 1TB in Bay 2 and 1TB in ODD would be absolutely sufficient.
    Do you think the ODD connector is as fast as the other SATA ports? Or will there be a kind of Speed limitation?

    I don't have the H920 yet but i'll get it in a couple of weeks. That's why i ask questions i could theoretically find out by myself. :)
     
  8. Dacoco

    Dacoco

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  9. Lagittaja

    Lagittaja

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    I wouldn't worry about it that much.

    Yes. 12.7mm optical drive size is a standard so it will fit just fine.
    Though, as a word of warning, the adapter might be a "snug" fit. I haven't used one of these adapters in this particular laptop but sometimes the fit is a bit more tight than it should be so occasionally I've had to push the darn thing inside with moderate force. Don't worry, you won't damage anything if it's a tight fit because it's just that, a tight fit.
    But if it's a rather snug fit then it's going to be "fun" to remove it if you catch my drift.

    The H920 has the QM77 chipset which has 6x SATA out of which only 2 can be SATA 3.0 (6Gb/s / 600MB/s) while the rest are SATA 2.x (3Gb/s / 300MB/s).
    Mobile Intel® QM77 Express Chipset Product Specifications
    The HDD bays are obviously SATA 3.0 so in my opinion you should put the SSD in one of the HDD bays and have one of your HDD's in the ODD adapter.
    And in regards to "one of your HDD's in ODD adapter", if you've two different types I'd put the one with lower power consumption and/or lower usage one in the ODD adapter. The drive is going to be isolated quite well inside the bay, well the HDD bays are like that as well but the ODD will be a bit more isolated in terms of thermals.​

    It's a good thing to ask questions.