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GLE3
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Message 1 of 10

ThinkCentre M55 SFF 8808: possible ways to deliver HDMI using PCIe x1 slot

Hi, first time poster.  My workplace basically gave away some of these ThinkCentre desktops.  I figured I would take one home for my youngest son as he is only into playing browser based computer games.  Now after doing some reasearch, it appears my options are limited with outputting to a TV (HDMI) with this particular model.  It appears there is a DVI card lenovo makes that would output the video but there is no good way to get the audio and video to one input of a TV. Do they make a DVI to HDMI adapter with an audio passthrough? Also I am not aware that anyone has successfully got a video card to work in this model (Pci-e x1 or PCI), if anyone has heard otherwise please kindly send me the info.  At most, I would like play 1080p video if I could find a graphic card that worked (E6300 processor) Thanks in advance!

 

Mod:  edited the Subject line to add PCIe x1 information

GLE3
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Message 2 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Sorry, full model model number is 8808-vha.  Searching this site suggests rhat these cards may work: gt620, gt430, GeForce 210, ati 3***, ati 4***.  Can anyone confirm that?

I

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Message 3 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

BEWARE:  researching this question, I've found that there are different PCIe specs for M55.  Your 8808 has a PCIe x1 slot.  Other spec M55 have a PCIe x16 slot, ie 8814, ATI X300SE was a factory option; none listed for your spec system.  I suspect the systems with the graphics cards you listed above were used with the x16 spec systems. 

 

However, I have also read that if you have an open-ended x1 slot, and there's free space, no components after the end of the slot, so that a x16 length card can seat down in a x1 slot, it *may work*, you need to confirm slot situation before continuing. 

 

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Message 4 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Another option might be a USB 2.0 to HDMI adapter.  Pay close attention to the max resolution and refresh rate, as most are more suitable for a monitor rather than a TV, and the games maybe taxing on the CPU as the graphics work is done in software.  I have used a 'Professional' adapter from Startech for DVI with good results. 

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GLE3
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Message 5 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Thank you for the thoughts and ideas!  I have one of those Trinidad riser cards with a pci and a funny pci x1 / Lenovo add2 slots.  As of right now nothing open ended.  Do I have other riser cards to choose from?  Has anyone ever tried modding a card by removing lanes or modding that funny slot?

GLE3
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Message 6 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Just throwing out an update..  Took a bit of courage and an educated guess and spent $20 on ebay for an NVS 295.  Has an x1 interface so I didn't have to modify anything.  Video works!  Unfortuately can't hear any sound and am trying to troubleshoot that (using passthrough cable connect to the card from the motherboard - I don't think motherboard has an spdif but it does have an external speaker with a 'hot' and a ground).  Credit goes to on the education part!  Thanks!

 

https://forums.lenovo.com/t5/ThinkCentre-A-E-M-S-Series/M55e-Hardware-Support/m-p/1459319

 

If I can't get the passthrough thing working, does anyone know how this whitelist thing works?  Is it by model number or TDP of video card?  If it is by TDP then what should I try to say under?  Should I try to stick with PCI Express 2.0 cards or can I look into 3.0? 

 

 

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Message 7 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI


@GLE3 wrote:
If I can't get the passthrough thing working, does anyone know how this whitelist thing works?  Is it by model number or TDP of video card?  If it is by TDP then what should I try to say under?  Should I try to stick with PCI Express 2.0 cards or can I look into 3.0? 

 


Whitelist is by model number.  I suggest you stay at or under 30w, and with PCI 2.0 cards, as they have good compatibility with PCI 1.0 & 1.1.  I've read that compatibilty with PCI 3.0 cards can be hit or miss.  

 

__________________________________________________________________________
I do not work for Lenovo. I do not respond to Private Messages for help, your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where the information exchange may help others. If I helped you, click the 'Kudos' button, if solved, the 'Accept as Solution'.
GLE3
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Message 8 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Thanks BiggAl for all your help!  My employer often sells or gives away old business machines.  Nice to know I can go to a site that will help me repurpose them...  So I can't seem to get the passthrough working on this NVS 295, not exactly sure what is at fault.  I don't think it has SPDIF, but it does have a two lead audio out that goes to the onboard speaker.  I figured I would just attach the SPDIF cable to that and it might work but no dice.  So....  Thinking about returning that card and trying a HD 4350.  Might also try a HD 5450 but most of the info on here suggests that won't work.  What do you think my chances are with a GT 710 or GT 730?  I think both are PCI express 2.0 and x1 interface.  Looks like the bios of my machine was last updated in 2009, guessing that would play a role in whether or not newer cards would work?

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Message 9 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

I do know that the GT 710 works in a M57, the next gen system, and the BIOS looks to be evolutionary.  If you can find a M55 (including with x16 slot) with a GT 710 working, you could be golden.  I haven't seen any posts on what might work in a x1 slot (otherwise I would have posted it above.)    

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I do not work for Lenovo. I do not respond to Private Messages for help, your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where the information exchange may help others. If I helped you, click the 'Kudos' button, if solved, the 'Accept as Solution'.
GLE3
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Message 10 of 10

Re: ThinkCentre M55 8808 possible way to deliver HDMI

Another update...  Yeesh, spending way to much time on this..  Anyway, the 4350 works (DMS-59 to dvi to HDMI adapter to HDMI cable) and I may get some crap for this but the 5450 works too!  Everything on this board says ati 5*** doesn't work.  It looks like I got lucky!

 

Edit - I don't see my specific model in the 8808 FRU listings of the hardware manual for the m55.  The manual does make mention of special orders from ibm and they modify to the buyers specs..  Possible that I'm not whitelisted maybe?

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