After a few weeks I have noticed a few problems with my M6400 Covet.
Here is an overview.
1.) Random hard-locks. My M6400 will sometimes hard-lock... it will completely freeze up. CTRL + ALT + DEL doesn't respond.. Caps Lock doesn't respond.. Everything simply freezes up. This is usually after I switch "off" the WiFi switch on the side of the covet.. or when connecting to a new WiFi network. I've updated the drivers to the ones on Dell's site.. It works for a while then does it again.
2.) Random video errors. My M6400's display will "freak out" every now and then. Seems to be completely random. Sometimes the machine is at idle, I come back and the screen has random artifacts on it.. sometimes it occurs when I'm working hard. It occurs when docked with an external monitor.. (however, it only affects the primary display on my docking station.. not the secondary display) and un-docked on the RGB LED E2E display. I think this is a driver error- but I've installed the drivers on Dell's website. Here is a screen-grab of the problem on the RGB LED E2E display. (Somehow I was *actually* able to prnt scrn it and save it in photoshop despite the horrible screen) My external monitor is fine and works fine with other computers.
3.) My WiFi/Bluetooth lights on the Covet don't always work. Sometimes i'm connected viai WiFi and the light isn't on. Strange. Are there supposed to be on-screen displays with the Covet? i.e. when you turn up /down the volume should there be an on-screen display? My old M90 did this.
Here are the vitals on my M6400 Covet: Intel Core 2 Dual Extreme Edition QX9300 2.53GHz, 1067MHZ, 12M L2 CacheDual Core 8.0GB, DDR3-1066 SDRAM, 4 DIMMfor Mobile Precision 1GB NVIDIA Quadro FX 3700M Mobile Precision M6400 Covet Intel X25-M 80GB SSD (main disk) 160GB Hard Drive 9.5MM 7200RPM FFS (storage) 17 inch Wide Screen Edge 2 Edge WUXGA RGBLED LCD, Blood Orange, for Mobile Precision M6400 Vista Ultimate 64-BIT Service Pack 1, with media, English Mobile Precision Integrated megapixel VGA webcam with single digital microphone, Mobile Precision M6400 Dell WLAN 1397 (802.11b/g) 1/2MiniCard for Latitude E/MobilePrecision
I am about to buy a new anchor and have narrowed it down to the above two options. Quotes pasted below. Prices ommitted.. The Covet is about 100 bucks more then the w700 out the door.
I have always been a Dell guy, never had much experience with the IBM/Lenovo's. (Dropped my D630 in a pool so I get to finally get a dcent computer) I understand the raw spec differences in that I am getting more power all around with the Dell. What I don't know is that if the Covet is of the same build quality as the lower end business or consumer models (Not so great) as opposed to the Thinkpads which are wonderful.
Also, is the only difference between the LED RGB E2E and the non E2E the piece of glass? Is it identical except for that? I have a 2009 Macbook pro 17" with the matte screen and think it is beautiful, did not like the Apple Glossy (read, glare) option. Am I losing out on anyhing other then the Glare with the Non-E2E screen? ...
Has anyone successfully calibrated the RGB LED screen on the M6400 Covet using a colorimeter?
I have a Pantone Huey Pro and I'm getting really bad results after calibration (washed out colors, greenish cast). After about 2 months of back and forth with Pantone they have told me that "maybe" my colorimeter doesn't have enough range for a screen with such a wide gamut.
The "maybe" part, which suggests they don't even know their own product, is what I find unbelievable
Is anyone else having stability issues with the Covet?
How would I go about measuring heat on the CPU and GPU? I can't seem to find any utilities.
NTune crashes Vista 64 so that's out...
What I'm getting is normal fast operation for maybe an hour, and then fairly reliably the screens will all blank out for a second and then come back. Windows delivers a popup saying the NVidia drivers have stopped responding and then recovered.
Event logs show the message also: Display driver nvlddmkm stopped responding.
I got the Quad Core Covet, and the Quadro 3700. I have it set in the High Performance power mode, plugged in to the wall on the (extremely large) factory charger. The system will run all day if I'm not using Maya.
Also ever since receiving this I have been getting a security audit failure:
Code: Code integrity determined that the image hash of a file is not valid. The file could be corrupt due to unauthorized modification or the invalid hash could indicate a potential disk device error.
File Name:DeviceHarddiskVolume3WindowsSystem32drivers cpip.sys Network works fine so I don't know what to think of that. Anyone have this too in Vista 64 Business or Ultimate?
From all the specs listed on this machine it should be a CAD powerhouse, however it seems that there are a number of people on the net reporting lots of driver issues when trying to run CAD software.
I'll be running things like Solidworks and some other engineering aps that use some 3D modeling and am wondering if there is any kind of a consensus yet as to weather this machine is good to go or not. This machine will be used for work, so I don't want to mess around with something that will be crashing all the time.
Is it just the Dell bloatware that is causing the issues? If I reformat and reinstall the OS how difficult is it to find all the proper (stable!) drivers to get this machine up and running again?
This is driving me crazy. The left rubber bumper on the keyboard deck of my m6400 keeps coming off. I called dell and they ended up replacing the entire deck just to replace this one little rubber piece and it just ended up coming off again.
I really don't want to call dell and set up a service call just to replace this one little piece. The last time I did the tech completely disassembled my laptop and it took him 3 reassembly attempts to get it to boot,
but I'm worried the my screen will get cracked if I don't (I have the covet with the glass screen). Seems like a really bad design.
I've had my covet for arround less than a month now and i've now got serious issues with photoshop cs4 and all the cs4 suite.. like selecting actionscript in flash cs4s actionscript panel.. (major lag)
It must be the graphics drivers, but i have installed all the varieties i have read about on this forum both from nvidia & laptovideo2go to no availe.. after opening a few psd's and trying to move layers around from one to the other (via the tabs etc..) it really starts to become unusable.. it feals like there is a graphics card memeory leak or something, also when i open the nvidia control panel to see what's going on the 3d logo start to stutter when i move my mouse over it continiously...
is anybody else having issue with cs4..?
covet, quadcore, 8gb ram, 3700m + 320 hd..
about to install another 320 hd and was happy to see that i don;t have to reinstall everything.... via (ludicrus speed)
***I should also note that some of the close screen shots are a little blurry. I wasnt using a camera stand and taking shots with no flash. So like in the sunset shot, dont compare resolution cause the m6400 pic looks blurrier than the 9100 pic. Just compare color and brightness. Sorry, I just noticed this hours later *
Ok, Ive taken some side by side pics. Old laptop, Dell 9100 15" about 4.5 years old. New Laptop - M6400 Covet
As you can see, for me at least, buying this 17" isnt much bigger than the 15" Im used to. Ok, yeah. I wish the power supply wasnt so big but I will still carry this daily with me to work.
I have a backpack by Spire that I LOVE. They make a sleeve that fits this laptop fine and though the backpack I bought isnt SUPPOSED to fit that big of a sleeve, it actually works.
I highly recommend Spire backpacks. My old one for the 9100 has been carried almost Daily for over 4 years with good weight in it and it still really seems like new esp in the strength department.
I am no expert in video card and monitor stuff as Im an audio guy, so I havent tweaked anything with these screens. They are just both set to highest brightness level and as they came. Im not sure how "fair" it is to compare these since one is an LED screen and one is not and right there, you should expect one to be "colder" and one "warmer".
The LED on the m6400 is definately more saturated with color and way brighter. In whites, my old one looks a bit yellowish though it doesnt really show on the pics.
I tried to so some comparison glossy vs matte (9100) screen. Yep, the Covet is glossy as it IS glass after all, but nope, it doesnt bother me a bit. My first glossy screen too.
I tried to show the screen at angles but both these screens seem to have a wide angle range for viewing.
So yeah I wasn't exactly handling the thing with utmost care, was holding the open laptop one-handed by the left front corner, heard a plastic snap sound... I press down on the flat black plastic area where your left palm would rest, just above the PC card slot.. it's a bit squishy. Does it flex for yours too, am I paranoid? Its not a problem just wondering...
Dell is finally starting to help me out as far as the screen glossiness and some other issues I've been having.
Before I tell them what parts I need in a replacement, I need to know if the M6400 RGBLED screen (not the Covet) is matte finish?
I'd really appreciate it - I can't trust their sales staff to actually know. My gut instinct would be that the E2E RGBLED screen is glossy, while the other is matte... but I don't want to replace my glossy with another glossy!
How black is your RGBLED screen? If you look at the black screen (say, black desktop background) in a completely dark room, is the screen uniformly black? Mine has some slightly brighter "shadows" (well, it's actually the opposite of a shadow) towards the middle of the screen. Granted, this is a tough test for a laptop LCD, but for that kind of money I would have expected more. My M90 certainly does better in that regard, but I do seem to recall that the screen on that laptop had a similar issue, and did improve over time.
So, is what I am seeing normal, or should I get them to give me a new LCD?
2 Intel X25-M 80GB SSD drives will be replacing those 80GB's.
First - my first thoughts are that this system is Fantastic!
The screen is great - its an LG, fantastic colors, no dead pixels. Typical viewing angles for non LED screen, not great, but not noticeably bad either.
No noticeable bleeding, no graininess - very happy with the screen.
Ran 3Dmark 06 (1280x800, stock drivers) - 11,619
GPU temp was around 80 C - not bad at all.
So far, very happy. Putting the SSD ddrives in now - will post more thoughts as I do more. Will post pics ASAP.
Update 1: 2 80GB SSDs are in place - this has Intel's Matrix Storage which allows the creation of one RAID1 volume (which I will use for valuable data) and a RAID0 volume for the rest of the space - this is very nice - get the benefits of both types of RAID in one system!
Update 2: The power brick is completely absurd. Its HUGE - 210W. The good news is that I plugged in a 130W from a M4400 and although I get the popup about the AC adapter not being at least 150W, it does charge the battery and allow the system to run. To me, this is an acceptable alternative to lugging around the giant brick, at least for most things on the road - Later on, I will test the system with this adapter and see what kind of slowdown is caused.
Next to a M4400 (that I believe I'll be returning very shortly):
Next to an older E1705 - these are virtually the exact same size - its astounding what new tech can cram into the same space
Whilst working away at my desk, M6400 docked it just powered down.
Pressing the power button causes it (the power button) to light briefly and then go out. Pressing FN+Power (as requested by Dell Tech) does nothing at all.
I've tried it with another PSU (I got 2, one with M6400, other with docking station) - and if you plug the PSU in, and then hit power on the laptop - the blue light on the PSU goes out - and doesn't come back on till the power is cycled. The M6400 does nothing during all of this.
The PSUs work just fine with my D820.
Dell techs are coming tomorrow to fix it. I'll let you know what they say!
I recently noticed that you can not configure a 64bit covet any more, which results in not being able to configure more than 4GB Ram. Also, the covet has only a few specified configurations that are allowed.
Is there an issue with the 64bit? Anyone know why Dell removed the 64bit options?