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Stvwndr219
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎05-08-2012
Location: United States
0

W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Hi all,

 

After three motherboard replacements, I was hoping all my issues were all resolved, but a new bug has popped up.  Here's the list of reasons for replacing the motherboards:

  • SSS (sudden shutdown syndrome) when CPU power management was enabled, replacement was able to work with CPU power management enabled.
  • Motherboard DOA after less than a week (white screen, though the DisplayPort still worked), replaced motherboard worked fine
  • Machine wouldn't sleep when lid was closed.  Motherboard did not detect the closing of the lid (I assume it's a mechanism on the motherboard and not the lid as the computer is not magnetically driven in the latch mechanism.

So after these replacements, I've got a relatively stable working system.  However, I'm noticing that whenever I start up an application that uses the discrete GPU, the screen will flicker briefly and continue launching the program.  I know the discrete GPU is being activated because of the notification icon in the tray.  

 

Does this happen to anyone else?  I can confirm it's not a driver issue as I've tried various versions of the Lenovo driver and the nVidia driver and this still happens.  I don't recall it happening when I had the other motherboards previously.

 

Here's a video of a w520 launching a 3D program without flickering:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=fgyJP4XXKRA#t=847s

 

The flicker is similar to what happens when the machine starts up and shuts down.

 

Machine Specs:

Lenovo W520 427637U

Core i7 2620QM

4x4GB DDR3 RAM

Samsung 256GB SSD

Toshiba 500GB HDD

FHD

Quadro 1000m

Windows 7 Ultimate (clean install)

 

Thanks for reading!

Retired Employee
NINE
Posts: 2,840
Registered: ‎03-20-2012
Location: Malaysia
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

hi Stvwndr219,

 

Sorry to hear the series of problem that you faced with with your machine. I just imagine how breath taking the situation was. But in the end i'm really gald service had assisted you accordingly and system are running great. :-)

 

However in regards to the your graphics issues. Am not sure Enitrely what exactly is casing that flicker. I would sugget you checking your grapics in the bios settings just to make sure it is set correctly.

 

In the mean let dive into this further and let u know as soon as i can.

 

Do let me know how it goes with my suggestion. ;-)

 

Regards

Paper Tape
Stvwndr219
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎05-08-2012
Location: United States
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Hi NINE,

 

The BIOS settings show that the video card is set to "Optimus" and that OS detection is enabled.  Can I ask you if your W520 has the flickering symptoms when launching 3D applications?

 

Thanks!

Guru
ColonelONeill
Posts: 7,075
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: Toronto
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

[ Edited ]

Try setting all of the NVIDIA services to manual startup.
Also uncheck all NVIDIA entries in startup using MSCONFIG.

 

FWIW, my screen flashes once at startup, and doesn't do it on application load or shutdown.

W520: i7-2720QM, Q2000M at 1080/670/1340, 21GB RAM, 500GB HDD, FHD screen
X61T: L7500, 3GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
Paper Tape
Stvwndr219
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎05-08-2012
Location: United States
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Hi ColonelONeill,

 

The only service I have in services.msc is the nVidia device driver - which I'm pretty sure I need to start up the system.  No NVIDIA entries in startup of MSCONFIG.

 

Also, not to be obtuse or anything but when you say applications, you are talking about 3D applications correct?  Games, rendering, etc?

 

Do you think Lenovo would replace it for the flickers?  I just want it to be fixed once and for all.  Also, has anyone had them fix the creaky wrist rests?  After my last service at a local service technician, it came back with the area near the latch creaky and the left palm rest creaking.

Guru
ColonelONeill
Posts: 7,075
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: Toronto
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Surprisingly, the NVIDIA driver service isn't actually required. Set it to manual startup. I generally have no NVIDIA processes actually running during use, and Optimus switching works just fine.

Yes, I mean 3D applications. Most of them are games though.

I think it's more of a software issue rather than a hardware issue.
As an aside, try disabling UAC. Maybe it's sneaking in a prompt or something.
W520: i7-2720QM, Q2000M at 1080/670/1340, 21GB RAM, 500GB HDD, FHD screen
X61T: L7500, 3GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
Paper Tape
Stvwndr219
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎05-08-2012
Location: United States
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Just tried disabling the services and it still flickers when launching a 3D application.  UAC has been disabled from the beginning.  Not sure what else I can try.

 

Also, the laptop did not exhibit this behavior with the previous motherboard.  Any other options to test out if it truly is the motherboard?

Guru
PeterTWJ
Posts: 1,110
Registered: ‎05-29-2010
Location: Singapore
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

[ Edited ]

@ ColonelONeill
I am not sure about setting NVIDIA services to manual, I have tried it before and what I get is right-click at Desktop and the option appears 1-2 seconds slower.

@ Stvwndr219

How about updating with official GPU driver? It should work fine if you installed the latest OEM driver before updating with official driver. I have tried that with several different PC and it work well and sometimes official driver could resolve issues that persist in OEM driver. 

Intel HD Graphic Driver 64-bitNVIDIA Quadro ODE Driver

 

I would suggest updating Intel driver also as it is part of NVIDIA Optimus. NVIDIA ODE driver (296.70) is slight different from GeForce driver (296.10).

 

Hope this helps :smileyhappy:

 

Have a nice day! :smileytongue::smileyhappy::smileyvery-happy:

Peter

W520 (4284-A99)

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Paper Tape
Stvwndr219
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎05-08-2012
Location: United States
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

No luck, completely uninstalled Lenovo drivers and Intel drivers and installed the new ones you pointed me to.

 

Are you sure t his isn't a hardware issue?

Guru
PeterTWJ
Posts: 1,110
Registered: ‎05-29-2010
Location: Singapore
0

Re: W520 flickering/flashing when discrete GPU activated

Hi Stvwndr219

You do not need to uninstall Lenovo's Intel / NVIDIA driver, after the latest Lenovo's Intel / NVIDIA driver is installed, update the new ones I pointed you to (simply just overwrite) or update it.

By the way, right-click on Desktop and click Graphic Properties, choose either Basic or Advanced mode, ensure that the refresh rate is 60Hz and you are using the native resolution.

Have a nice day! :smileytongue::smileyhappy::smileyvery-happy:

Peter

W520 (4284-A99)

Does someone’s post help you? Give them kudos as a reward, as they will do better to improve | Mark it as solved if the solution works for you, so it could be reference for others in the future

=====================================

Sound Enthusiast and Enhancement (Post comments, share mixes, etc.)

Dolby Home Theater v4 ; IdeaPad Slate Tablet