Saturday, April 22, 2006

R51e overclocking tips

This is what I used to bridge the two pins on the cpu. A single strand of copper wire stripped from a telephone modem line. The job requires delicate hands and a pair of tweezers. Remember double check and re-check you have place the wire in the right hole before replacing your cpu. If you were successful, drop me email I would love to know about it.

In theory the following Celeron M wtih 400MHz FSB should work:
350, 360, 370, 380 & 390. Make sure your CPU is 90nm architecture; 130nm might be too hot.

What I would like to know is how fast the Celeron M 390 (1.7MHz)(400FSB) is going to be after overclocking . . . do share the results if you've done it.

Lastly, if your processor runs at 533MHz FSB then don't bother with this overclocking stuff. It shouldn't work at all.


Overclocking your Thinkpad R51e

First thing first, whatever you do with your notebook, you do it at your own risk. I disclaim all liability arising in connection with this article whatsoever. Overclocking carry risks . . .

HOw to overclock your Thinkpad R51e. If your Thinkpad has a Celeron M 370 (1.5GHz), it's possibile to overclock to 2.0GHz.
Have a look at the screenshots I have included. After overclocking, it is now faster than a Pentium M 745 (1.8GHz)/2MB L2 Cache, and only just slight slower than a Pentium M 755 (2.oGHz).

3DMark05 score shows a marginal increase too, from previous score of about 560 to 610.

The steps are simple:
1. Get the R51e Hardware Maintenance Manual from IBM.
Following the instructions to removal the CPU in the FRU section.

2. Following this guide here:
The steps are the same for overclocking the R51e.

Have fun :-)

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Sony's New Alpha DSLR

Sony today openned a website showing glipses (or should I say shadowy outline) of their new DSLR due for release this summer. It will be using the Alpha Mount from Minolta. Sony claims the new camera will fully inherit the Alpha product DNA and its lens user base of 1.6 million units out there.

Summer . . . that's June-August 2006, that would mean the news release would be available by May latest. By the looks of it there will at least be two models at initial launch, one plasticky low profile version to combat Nikon's inexpensive D50DSLR, Olympus E330 & Canon's EOS350D etc. & perhaps a higer end version to fight with Nikon's D70, Canon's EOS5D?

Even the lower end version should have at 10mp using the same CMOS from Sony's existing R1. At any rate, there are plenty of good offerings out there besides Sony. Worthy of attention is Panasonic's new DSLR & Carl Zeiss's F mount digital lens.


Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Acquired new IBM Thinkpad R51e

Intel Celeron M 370 (1.5Ghz) 1MB L2 Cache / FSB 400Mhz
Display: 14" - 1024x768
Ram: 1 GB DDR2 4200
Chipset: ATi Xpress 200m
Graphics: ATI X200m IGP / 128MB
Hard Drive: 2.5" Hitachi Travel Star 5K100 / 40GB / 5400rpm
Media: Ultrabay Enhanced DVD/CD-RW Combo
Other features: PCMCIA / Xpress Card 64 Slot / Thinklight
Connectivity: Wireless Lan B & G
1 Year Warranty
Price paid: HK$5,900-

Key Points:
1. User upgradeable CPU / mFCPGA Socket
Max: Pentium M 780 (2.26 / 533mhz)
2. Max ram of 2 GB
3. Weight-saver included / can remove DVD-drive to save weight
4. Ultrabay battery priced at HK$900 only
5. Spec should be good enough for Windows Vista

Am I pleased with it?
Well, considering the price I paid for it . . . yes. Solid good working machine, extremely reliable. Excellent power management software, I am getting about three hours from the six cell battery on everyday web browsing/emailing/typing task. The thinklight orange glow on the keyboard is lovely. The indicators are placed where they should be. Machine is quiet, really quiet. Hard drive uses fluid dynamic bearings, so it damn quiet.

I have been using Sony VAIOs all my life . . . this is my first Thinkpad. And this Thinkpad is good! I don't miss my VAIO. I got this Thinkpad for cheap as Vista will be launched next year (i.e. Jan 2007, nine months to go) so I don't want to spend too much but I do need a notebook given that I've been doing a lot of work at the library lately.

Besides almost everything in the R51e is upgradeable. Will upgrade the CPU when the fastest Pentium M's halves in price :) Intel Core Dual is out selling at over HK$10,000 . . . I really hate being an early adopter and given that prices on notebooks drop so fast nowadays, waiting a bit gives you enormous savings (btw, the same goes for Digicams too). Waiting 'A bit' means only 4-6 weeks only . . .

Thinkpad R51e with Celeron M 370 gets a 3DMark05 benchmark of 560 points. Intel GMA 950 graphics processor and a 1.66 GHz T2300 Core Duo CPU will produce a 3DMark05 score of about 530. So ATi Xpress 200M isn't bad at all. Of course it goes without saying the Celeron CPU is slower than the T2300 Core Duo . . .