03-10-2013 11:58 PM - edited 03-11-2013 12:02 AM
Thanks, ElbertR, are you sure you didn't mistype that, and that the BIOS version you have isn't actually instead 62.92.6E.00.10? I don't see any mention online of the version number that you typed.
I had seen some reports indicating that version 62.92.6E.00.10 was associated with HP. But I couldn't find any HP users who said it shipped with their laptop, and the only two users I could find who tried it on stock 8730w's had problems with it:
But IF 62.92.6E.00.10 IS working well for you, then we should include it in the list of viable card BIOS numbers. The W700 probably had better cooling than the 8730w, plus it had a higher-wattage power supply, making the 3700M work better on the W700 in general. Perhaps that BIOS went into laptops near the end of the product cycle, or perhaps it only existed in HP cards that were replacement parts.
Good tip about the bracket. Also, for anyone out there who contemplates updating their W700's main BIOS, I don't recommend doing so within Windows. Too many things can interrupt the BIOS update within Windows, which can brick the machne, requiring a motherboard replacement. It's safer to burn the ISO CD version of the BIOS update, verify that the contents of the CD are valid, and boot to that to run the update. Update the BIOS only if you absolutely have to.
By the way, ElbertR, do you do anything that stresses the GPU, like playing games, using the GPU for intensive computations, doing a lot of real-time graphics rendering, etc.? Thanks. And please be sure to tell us if you mistyped the BIOS version.
03-19-2013 06:43 AM
Thanks you both for all the help
It took a while but I finally found a Quadro FX 3700M at a reasonable price from an HP Elitebook 8730w and with the BIOS I need. The seller assures me his cards have the 62.92.51.00.05 and Rev number 180-10398-0002-A04 printed on the PCB as you can see from the pictures. Let's see what I get.
03-19-2013 06:47 PM
That's great! The card in the picture looks like the real deal, matches this pic of the same model card exactly (except for S/N, and that it's taken from a different angle), and the part numbers match ElbertR's. The only thing that seems inconsistent is that the seller has a typo in the listing's assy P/N (460724-001 instead of the correct 460734-001), although the number is correct in the seller's pic of the card.
So BIOS 62.92.51.00.05 apparently went at least as far as a rev. A04 board.
Okay, I'm sitting on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happens!
03-20-2013 02:55 AM
Hopefully this one will work. I'm just a little worried about the soldering work done on these cards as I believe all 3 were broken at some point. The description says they are refurbished and I can tell there's some reflow job done or even component swapping on the card. Take a closer look at the soldering of the second "cubical" grey component on the button left side of the front side, general picture and the 4 black smaller components with a + sign on top that line down between the the two bigger grey parts (not ram)...
I told the seller to send the card with either the higher BIOS number or if all 3 cards were the same version, then the newer or cleaner.
As a side not, yesterday I got refunded from the previous card and for my surprise, they only transferred back the price of the card and not the shipping costs (I was ok to pay from my pocket the costs to return the card). Ebay states clearly that if the item is broken or it doesn't match the description the buyer is eligible to get fully refunded yet, after a few emails back and forth, the seller didn't want to pay for the initial shipping costs. The card they sent was to my judgment, both broken and not described as it should on the items description (adding engineering sample somewhere). I'd like to transcript their message to show how far they can go at lying to their customers (I will remove their business name) but I'm not sure if that's against this forum's rules. At the end I got my refund in full but took a very harsh message from my part. To make the story short, if you ever need a replacement for your Quadro, stay away from engineering versions and check the BIOS so they are at least 62.92.5C.05.00 if they come from Lenovo or 62.92.5C.00.05 if it's an HP. As already mentioned before, Dell version will not work on Lenovo or HP machines.
03-20-2013 12:27 PM
Take a closer look at the soldering of the second "cubical" grey component on the button left side of the front side, general picture and the 4 black smaller components with a + sign on top that line down between the the two bigger grey parts
It's possible they've been resoldered, but you may simply be seeing reflections in the solder, vs. irregularities in the solder's surface. For example, what looks like a reflection in the solder of that lower gray package on the left matches the reflection in the solder of the right joint of C23 just above it. And all the packages along the left edge with the + sign on them have what look like matching reflections in their solder. The camera was very close to the card (you can even see the reflection of "Canon" in the top of the GPU), so the reflections in the solder will vary across the board, but be similar within any given small neighborhood among joints having similar orientations. Even after interpolating the image to 3x normal size and sharpening it, I can't be certain of any resoldering because of the lesser quality of the image compared to the images you shot. If those joints have been resoldered, at least they've cleaned up the excess flux afterward from the area surrounding the joint, unlike in the first ebay card you received.
Plus you'll likely recieve a different unit than was photographed. I guess you'll have to see what shows up at the door, and whether it works!
I have a natural distrust of ebay in general. But whenever you see feedback indicating someone was selling engineering samples when the listing didn't mention that, it's a big red flag that will scare off many buyers. Especially if the seller admits that he/she knew they were engineering samples (or whatever similar name they want to use), but didn't mention it. So I'm sure the feedback you leave on ebay will have an impact. Am I surprised at what happened? No. But at least we now have a much better idea of what to look for to see through all the smoke and mirrors.
03-21-2013 02:19 AM
I think what I see are irregularities on the solder surface but yeah, it's pointless to speculate on the card condition without knowing for sure which one I will end up getting.
As for eBay, unfortunately it is the only place where you can find these kind of Quadros on a regular basis and if something goes wrong, you get covered by PayPal (which in my opinion is an evil necessity). You can obviously wait for one to pop up on a forum but that might take months if it ever happens and still you don't know what you'll get. Buying on dedicated shops is another option but prices are 2-3 times of what you can find on eBay. As for leaving feedback, you guys are totally right.
04-03-2013 02:39 PM
The failure of a graphics card is usually due to the thermal load it is subjected to over time, resulting in loosening of the soldier joints. So it is all about cooling really. Have your laptop been running very hot, this can be the reason.
If the graphics card is dead and you are out of warranty, you have nothing to loose by trying to repair it yourself. Since these items are hard to source, it can be worth a try. Google "reflow", "reflow soldering" etc. Have not tried procedure myself, but it is an interesting read. Example link: