Originally Posted by shazza
Hammerhead...you are truly amazing. That is truly an awesome score.
A question for you...if your video cards do flake out in the future - do you still have the option of getting them repaired/replaced by the original vendor? Note - I'm not going to OC my notebook, just always been curious about this point...
That's a good question...
Alienware's policy is pretty clear, overclocking voids your warranty. They tolerated minor overclocks of the video cards with AlienAdrenaline in the desktops, but the laptops are locked down on purpose. Without modification, the AW systems only operate correctly with AW certified drivers, and they make sure through the software that you can't overclock. AW has always had a very strict policy on overclocking the processors. If AW didn't OC the processor from the factory, any overclock voids your warranty. Period.
I'm absolutely sure since the warranty was voided, that AW wouldn't do the repairs free of charge. If they would do the work, I'm sure they'd charge hardware, labor and shipping costs so it would be very expensive. They may refuse to do the work at all as heat from overclocked parts, especially in a laptop can damage hardware near the component, or even the motherboard and peripheral components. If you bump the fsb, you essentially are overclocking everything in the system.
This is why I'm putting up disclaimers on this post. It is clear in the warranty that overclocking voids it, so if you're stupid enough to overclock your laptop AW should refuse to deal with the machine further.
Alienware has had a problem with some customers overclocking and burning up their hardware, then trying to make a claim under the warranty, but I know the people in charge of investigating these situations, and they're very good at what they do. You likely won't be able to get it by them, they have several ways of checking if the system has been overclocked. In fact, trying to claim under warranty though you've voided it blatently could be fraud.
I've been arguing with myself whether I should post the score I achieved as I'm sure it will concern some people at Alienware as there is absolutely no reason to overclock a system like this, and if done improperly can only lead to problems both for AW and the customer. I know they work very hard to squeeze the best performance they can out of these systems while maintaining a safety factor for safe use and longevity to protect themselves and the customers, but 11K+, WOWZA!!!
I did this out of personal curiosity. It's a personality flaw that's bit me in the past. But with all the overclocking done by other groups here and elsewhere, and the nature of the low clocked for efficiency and battery life hardware in this platform, I really wanted to know if I could reach 11k. Now that I have, nobody else has to risk their hardware trying...
Clearly the m9700 was designed with quiet fans and a heatsink setup that was efficient and very safe for the stock equipment set at stock clocks. The performance at stock settings keep the machine running at very reasonable temps and gives a very high yield so there is no justification for doing this to your machine.
As I said, I did it for myself, but I wouldn't encourage anyone else doing the same as every piece of hardware is different, and is only warranted to the stock specifications. Some cards will tolerate overclocking, others won't or will fail reasonably fast, so it's just not worth it.
Again, I argued with myself about posting this, as I'm sure it will upset some at AW that work so hard to make sure the machine is stable and performs well at stock settings. I don't want anyone else to try this, especially if you have no experience with this process, or if you can't afford to replace the machine yourself if you blow it up. If I ran into issues during the process, I would have told AW what I did, and hopefully they would sell me the hardware or do the repairs at my cost, but there are no guarantees.
Then again, once you've purchased it, it's yours, so if you want to risk it it's up to you I suppose. It only becomes an issue if you damage your hardware then lie to Alienware to try to get them to foot the bill on the repairs...
BTW, I'd also advise anybody buying a laptop to buy an extended warranty and not to void it. We've seen that laptop repairs can be very expensive...