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CPU Upgrade on Dell Precision 690

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  • Dell
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May 26, 2009 6:49:29 PM

I've inherited a Precision 690 and I'd like to upgrade the CPU - would love to go dual quad - well something faster than what's in there right now: single dual-core Xeon Dempsey.

I talked to Dell and they said the motherboard I have only supports adding another Dempsey dual core at over $500 ... I was wondering whether 2 Xeon Dempseys in there would be faster than a brand new Intel/AMD quadcore. Can I / should I scrap the Dell mobo/cpu/ram and get something off Newegg? Does anyone know whether that case is ATX or some kind of Dell proprietary thing? Probably should get new case if that's the case.

Suggestions much appreciated.

More about : cpu upgrade dell precision 690

May 26, 2009 7:03:44 PM

lets put it this way. if you have a 2.4 GHZ CPU and you decide to add another 2.4GHZ CPU then your system will still get speeds 2.4GHZ. the more CPU's you have the more programs you can run at once but the programs will still run at the speed the CPU is rated at. another way of putting it is your computer will not run at 4Ghz if you have 2 2Ghz CPU's installed
a c 203 à CPUs
May 26, 2009 7:26:54 PM

denzlite said:
Does anyone know whether that case is ATX or some kind of Dell proprietary thing? Probably should get new case if that's the case.
It's a BTX case (and BTX motherboard of course). Not exactly "Dell proprietary", but it might as well be. Just getting an ATX case won't fix anything since you also have the BTX form factor motherboard.
You should be able to get another Xeon Dempsey for about $165 if you shop around. Xeon 5063 3.2Ghz
The socket 775 version would be the Pentium D 940 3.2Ghz (about $88 currently) and you should be able to find benchmarks to compare that with the current quads.


Related resources
a c 203 à CPUs
May 26, 2009 7:32:41 PM

captaincharisma said:
lets put it this way. if you have a 2.4 GHZ CPU and you decide to add another 2.4GHZ CPU then your system will still get speeds 2.4GHZ. the more CPU's you have the more programs you can run at once but the programs will still run at the speed the CPU is rated at. another way of putting it is your computer will not run at 4Ghz if you have 2 2Ghz CPU's installed
Some reading for you: THG: Parallel Processing, Part 1: CPU Cores


May 27, 2009 9:56:29 PM

Hmm, interesting... I guess my primary motivation is to make this a video editing machine. I've got a new camera using the new AVCHD format and I'd like to get a quad core on there.

For my home computer I upgraded to a AMD 940 Phenom Deneb Quad and it seems to handle that AVCHD video a lot better than the 6400 AMD I had in there.

Would an ATX board fit in that case? I think I can convince my boss to get me new mobo, cpu and ram ... prolly not new computer. Since I got an AMD at home, I'd like to try one of the new Intel chips at work...

Thanks for the advice.
a c 203 à CPUs
May 28, 2009 4:04:47 AM

denzlite said:
Would an ATX board fit in that case?
ATX motherboard and BTX cases aren't compatible.

Compare the back of your ATX PC to the Dell Precision 690


June 18, 2009 4:54:53 PM

You'll want to check the chip set, of course, but if it's Socket LGA 775 it might support a Core 2 Duo CPU... Almost any C2D CPU would beat a single core Dempsey.


~ n8
December 23, 2009 8:43:12 PM

Can we revisit this topic? I have one of these and love it. Is it worth the money to get a new chip? what are my best options and rough prices?
Anonymous
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January 22, 2010 12:38:18 PM

Same here with a Dell Precision 690. Just tried installing a Xeon Quad Core 1,86 GHz (SL9MV, 1066 FSB) as a replacement for a Xeon Dual Core 5130 2,0 GHz (SL9RX 1333 FSB ), but got a message the cpu is not supported.

Would also like to know experiences of people with the same workstation who did have, or have not, had any succes replacing the CPU for a (dual) Quad Core.
February 21, 2010 3:52:54 AM

I had the same problem after changing to Quadcore, here the solution:

Mainboard with newest revision MY171 (see mainboard label): upgrade bios to rev A08, mainboard with older revision DT029 and F9394: flash bios to rev A01 (newer versions don´t work with Quadcore on older mainboards), remove bios battery and mains-plug for 3 minutes to get a full bios reset, then replace battery an start the system. The bios will detect all drives and new cpu type during first start. Don´t forget to set system time after restart.

Flashing Bios to rev A01 can only be done in DOS mode from a diskette drive, to find the file use search function on DELL support side, query: dell 690 bios a01.

My system (mobo DT029, bios A01) didn´t show any problems with windows 7 64bit and Quadcore CPU Xeon E5345 (2.33MHz) with this bios revision.

Hope you get your system running now with Quadcore.

February 21, 2010 5:37:11 AM

Some more:

When you start the system with case open you´ll get an error massage "cooling system corrupt", detected by a little switch located at the rearwall nearby the harddrive. Close the case before start or hold the switch down by a piece of tape.

The 690 mainboard only supports Xeon 51xx and 53xx, if you want to run Xeon 52xx or 54xx replace the mainboard by p/n RW199 from Dell Precision T7400 Workstation. It has the same size and all components of the 690 fit. It also has 2x PCI-E 16x and fits CPUs with 1600MHz FSB with its 5400 Chipset. Search on Ebay or Google.

When upgrading the system to 2nd cpu the is another problem: where can i get this heatsink (p/n FD841) cheap? There are several shops selling this part, prices from $60 to $180. The cheapest seller I found was impactcomputers.com: $59,- +shipping.
Coolermaster S3N-PGUTS-L5-GP also fits, but its also hard to get this type.

If someone found a cheaper distributor please post.
June 8, 2010 1:39:22 PM

How can I tell which motherboard I have in my 690? The only relevant thing I can find is a sticker that says Revision A00. I can't find anything that says MY171, DT029, or F9394. If it helps, this system was purchased in January 2007.
Anonymous
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October 27, 2010 5:42:41 AM

The motherboard has a marking on it that starts with CN- then a long series of numbers. Right after the CN you will find the 6 digit code, then more dashes and numbers that aren't relevant. It is near the top on mine, running horizontally when looking straight at the computer with the case panel removed.
December 27, 2010 6:57:21 AM

Hi bullfrog666,

Thanks for the useful information. i have a precision 690 with MY171 mainboard and i intend to upgrade to Xeon 53xx processor. From your quote that need to flash the memory to A01 in DOS, how to do this? make a bootable floppy disk? i have download the A01 bios from dell website, so could you please be so kind to share step by step or abit more details on this for me to complete the upgrade. thanks alot... :D  :D 


bullfrog666 said:
I had the same problem after changing to Quadcore, here the solution:

Mainboard with newest revision MY171 (see mainboard label): upgrade bios to rev A08, mainboard with older revision DT029 and F9394: flash bios to rev A01 (newer versions don´t work with Quadcore on older mainboards), remove bios battery and mains-plug for 3 minutes to get a full bios reset, then replace battery an start the system. The bios will detect all drives and new cpu type during first start. Don´t forget to set system time after restart.

Flashing Bios to rev A01 can only be done in DOS mode from a diskette drive, to find the file use search function on DELL support side, query: dell 690 bios a01.

My system (mobo DT029, bios A01) didn´t show any problems with windows 7 64bit and Quadcore CPU Xeon E5345 (2.33MHz) with this bios revision.

Hope you get your system running now with Quadcore.

December 27, 2010 7:42:20 AM

the point is, DELL precision 690 is upgradeable from the original Xeon 51xx to Xeon 53xx.

I am not interested if DELL or INTEL gonna help on this. I just need some advice from the people who has done the upgrading successfully and Bullfrog666 has done it!!
a b à CPUs
December 27, 2010 8:40:26 AM

Bullfrog666 also hasn't posted anything since February.
!