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Coswyn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-24-2011
Location: Phoenix, AZ
0

W520 Noise

While plugged in my W520 is silent, but when unplugged and running off the battery I hearing a noise that seems to eminate from the general area of the left palm rest (I'm unable to pinpoint it, though I know it's not the drive (SSD) because I removed and replaced it with an HDD and the noise persisted, and when I tried the SSD on another machine there was no noise coming from it).

 

The noise itself fluctuates with activity and alternates between a consistent high-pitched but low volume sound (about as loud as the lowest setting on the main system fan), and a high-pitched chirping (about the same volume, maybe a decibal louder) when there is activity.

 

I'm on a fresh install of Windows 7 Pro 64-bit with all Windows updates downloaded and installed and all Lenovo software and system drivers updated (via manual installation and the ThinkVantage System Update tool). I also tried multiple power settings and none of them had any effect on the noise.

 

Keep in mind, again, that this noise is not heard (not to any audible level, at least) while the system is plugged in and charging. But it pretty well defeats the point of having a mobil machine to have it plugged in at all times, so I'm hoping to solve this issues as soon as possible. :smileyhappy:

 

Has anyone else experience this issue with the W520 (or W510, or any other ThinkPad for that matter)? Are there any solutions to it, or options to potentially solve it?

 

If you need more details or need me to clarify anything please let me know.

 

Thanks.

Token Ring
thitiv
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎02-13-2009
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
0

Re: W520 Noise

It is the notorious "CPU whine" plagued with Intel CPUs for ages. Google for the term to learn more about it :smileyhappy:

Twitter @thitiv | Work | ThinkPad W520 (4270-CTO) Core i7-2960XM 2.7/3.7 GHz | 16GB Kingston HyperX PnP DDR3-1866
2 x 256GB Crucial M4 & C300 SSDs | Intel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 | Ericsson F5521gw WWAN | Ultrabay Blu-ray Burner
NVIDIA Quadro 2000M | 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 | ThinkPad Battery 55++ (9-cell) & Battery 27++ (9-cell slice)

Paper Tape
Coswyn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-24-2011
Location: Phoenix, AZ
0

Re: W520 Noise

 


thitiv wrote:
It is the notorious "CPU whine" plagued with Intel CPUs for ages. Google for the term to learn more about it :smileyhappy:

 

So it's the CPU? Is this an issue that affects only some Intel CPUs or do they all experience it? Are there any solutions to it? Do you know if it's covered by Lenovo's warranty?

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Coswyn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-24-2011
Location: Phoenix, AZ
0

Re: W520 Noise

I'm still hearing the same noise intermitently (particularly when the system is not sitting idle but is under load), but I should add that I'm now hearing a kind of fluttering or flickering sound from that area, almost like the sound of an electrical short. I wouldn't say it's loud but it's definitely noticable and a bit louder than the fan on low, and it's also constant regardless of activity.

 

Again, this is only when it's running off the battery. When I plug it back in the sound immediately ceases, whether idle or under load.

 

Does this sound like part of the same issue? Any thoughts on this?

Token Ring
thitiv
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎02-13-2009
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
0

Re: W520 Noise

@Coswyn, what you describe is exactly the description of a CPU whine. Try opening Power Manager in Advanced Mode. Look at System settings in the Power Plan tab, then Disble the CPU Deeper Sleep option in the Battery settings column. This should reduce the noise somehow.

Twitter @thitiv | Work | ThinkPad W520 (4270-CTO) Core i7-2960XM 2.7/3.7 GHz | 16GB Kingston HyperX PnP DDR3-1866
2 x 256GB Crucial M4 & C300 SSDs | Intel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 | Ericsson F5521gw WWAN | Ultrabay Blu-ray Burner
NVIDIA Quadro 2000M | 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 | ThinkPad Battery 55++ (9-cell) & Battery 27++ (9-cell slice)

Paper Tape
Coswyn
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-24-2011
Location: Phoenix, AZ
0

Re: W520 Noise


thitiv wrote:

@Coswyn, what you describe is exactly the description of a CPU whine. Try opening Power Manager in Advanced Mode. Look at System settings in the Power Plan tab, then Disble the CPU Deeper Sleep option in the Battery settings column. This should reduce the noise somehow.


I don't have a "CPU Deep Sleep" option in that part of my Power Manager.

Guru
PeterTWJ
Posts: 1,093
Registered: ‎05-29-2010
Location: Singapore
0

Re: W520 Noise

Previously, I have this issue on my W510 and it whines regardless of using AC or battery. After suffering from overheat and sound, I refunded it. By the way is your W series running on Core i5 or i7? I remember my Dell Studio 15 with i5 does not have this issues, just dunno y some ppl are affected, some ppl are not when using the same CPU chip.

Now, I am using a W520 and so far so good, running BIOS v1.21, hopefully would not encounter this issue again on my W520.

 

Have you all tried enable Lenovo TurboBoost+ and see if the whining still persist?

Best Regards
Peter
=============================================
Does someone post helps you? Give them a kudos as a reward, as they will do better to improve :smileyvery-happy:

Token Ring
thitiv
Posts: 127
Registered: ‎02-13-2009
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
0

Re: W520 Noise

There may be a change in W520. Mine is a W510 with i7-920xm. Let us hear from friends with W520, esp. Peter, then. FYI, the whine happens during changes in CPU speed steps. At a certain step the noises happen. What people try is to avoid that step at the expense of battery juice.

Twitter @thitiv | Work | ThinkPad W520 (4270-CTO) Core i7-2960XM 2.7/3.7 GHz | 16GB Kingston HyperX PnP DDR3-1866
2 x 256GB Crucial M4 & C300 SSDs | Intel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 | Ericsson F5521gw WWAN | Ultrabay Blu-ray Burner
NVIDIA Quadro 2000M | 15.6" FHD 1920x1080 | ThinkPad Battery 55++ (9-cell) & Battery 27++ (9-cell slice)

Guru
PeterTWJ
Posts: 1,093
Registered: ‎05-29-2010
Location: Singapore
0

Re: W520 Noise

IBM Service Center replaced a new CPU for my W510, then the whine sound reduce, not as loud. By right, it's not allowed as noted by Intel as "normal", but they replaced it as a goodwill. Although with whine sound, I can still live with it as it is an acceptable level, almost unaudible level.

 

This is Intel's fault, not Lenovo or IBM fault. Other manufacturer laptops like Dell or HP are also affected and whine sound is even noisier. You can try go youtube and see the video.

 

W520
Under Power Manager > Global Settings > Advanced options > CPU: Disabled. (I rather hear buzzing sound then sacrifice battery)

You need to verify by putting ur ears near the fan as it may be the near RAM part whining. If it's CPU, it's not warrantied, if I am not wrong. However, they may replace a new CPU if they want to go for the extra mile to satisfy the customers.

 

Best Regards

Peter

=============================================
Does someone post helps you? Give them a kudos as a reward, as they will do better to improve :smileyvery-happy:

 

Broadband 3G
JDay
Posts: 999
Registered: ‎01-06-2011
Location: Sacramento, CA
0

Re: W520 Noise


PeterTWJ wrote:

I remember my Dell Studio 15 with i5 does not have this issues, just dunno y some ppl are affected, some ppl are not when using the same CPU chip.



Because the problem is not the CPU, it is a capacitor that is making the noise.