03-17-2016 07:28 AM
I have a ThinkPad Yoga with a dead mainboard. My ThinkPad is the i5-4200U / 4GB model, and the mainboard says 'LA-A341P' on it.
I've found a replacement mainboard online, with part number 03X5234. However, I have also found what appears to be the next model up from my board - an i7-4600U / 8GB model, part number 04X5478.
Will the better model work in my laptop? Or should I play it safe and just buy the weaker one?
03-17-2016 02:45 PM
Depends what you want... I actually want an i5 in my laptop because the i7 is overkill. In my case I also have a desktop PC with an i7 for doing video processing... So, I would prefer a less powerful chip to carry around with better battery life, less fan noise, etc. Rather than replace your system board with an i7, why not get yourself a whole new i7 gaming laptop for $200 from China if that is what you need?
If you have a read of the hardware maintenance manual there appears to be no difference between any of the system boards with regards to installation, so really it is your choice as to what tradeoff between portability and power you want to make. Usually the i7 boards are a bit more expensive...
03-18-2016 04:51 PM
The 2 parts you mention are similar to each other. 'LA-A341P' is not a real part number and I cannot identify it. The difference between the two parts you list (becides the CPU and memory) is the OS license. The i5 has a win8 std license and the i7 has Pro. If you use the wrong one, you will have activation problems. In any case, if you have already upgraded to windows 10 you may not be able to activate your install unless the board you choose has a license that went through an upgrade.
03-18-2016 08:22 PM
Thanks for the advice! I am going to purchase the better of the two boards and see how it goes. I'll post back here with results.
In regards to the price, the boards are $240AUD and $260AUD (used), so the extra price isn't an issue. As for the windows activation - I use Arch Linux for my day to day computing, and W10 inside a VM for .NET development (which is coincidentally why I'd appreciate the extra RAM).
04-10-2016 11:56 PM
So, I ordered in the new upgraded motherboard and installed it. At first, the keyboard lit up and the fan whirred, but nothing appeared on the screen! I got quite a fright, and reinstalled a few times to no avail.
I then realised that I could see something on the screen under a light - it seems the LCD inverter is dead!
So overall - a positive result for the motherboard. It is compatible, and the computer came to life once more. Unfortunately for me, I may have to get a new LCD to fix my Yoga completely (I've been using it through an external monitor for now).
I've also noticed that my battery life seems to have diminished quite significantly - it seems I'd be lucky to get 2 hours of life out of it at the moment. I'm not sure if this has something to do with the damaged state of the laptop, or old age (the battery has had ~170 cycles), or whether the new improved motherboard is taxing it more. The CPU fan seems to be on almost always now.