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2560x1600 resolution from 6990M

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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June 20, 2012 9:45:00 PM

Hey folks

I've got a weird problem here similar to what I'm seeing in a lot of discussion boards with no definitive fixes.

I have a ProStar (essentially a Clevo) P150HM laptop with ATI Radeon 6990M. On the website for the 6990M, it's specs clearly list that it supports 2560x1600 (though with a footnote indicating "Some custom resolutions require user configuration.") So I figured it would be a great idea to buy a Dell U3011 to do some photoshop work, maybe run some games though at that resolution though it's tough to say if the 6990M would keep up. Anyway, I receive the monitor a couple days ago and hook it up using the dual link DVI cable that came with the monitor...max resolution available is 1920x1080. WTF?

Other important info:
1) Driver for the 6990M is up to date. When I roll the driver back to the one included by ProStar, all of a sudden I can get resolution up to 1920x1200. Weird.

2) I've run this laptop on a 1920x1200 Asus monitor via single link DVI before no problems.

3) Called Dell and they had no clue how to fix this.

4) Emailed AMD and the guy said he's never heard of a laptop going over 1080p. So he is useless.

5) Called ProStar and he had no clue either.

6) Lot of discussion out there about tweaking either the vbios to lift some bullshit limitation put on the card, or tweaking .inf files associated with the monitor to force a resolution. Any ideas?

Personally I feel like it's the graphics card or laptop manufacturer that needs a new driver or bios to fix this. What do you guys think? What do you think the footnote from the ATI site means (http://www.amd.com/us/products/notebook/graphics/amd-ra...)? Thanks for the help, I really appreciate it.

Cheers

Matt
June 20, 2012 10:02:55 PM

what type of dvi out do you have? single link supports up to 1080p and it sounds like you have a single link dvi out.
Related resources
June 21, 2012 12:20:49 AM

The fact that the video controller itself supports dual-link DVI does not imply that complete interface (from the chip to the connector) is present, and the only ones to tell that are Clevo / ProStar. Neither Dell nor AMD/ATI know anything about that. So, escalate the issue to someone in ProStar who knows.

At least, try monitor + cable on a known-to-work system (you will probably have to lug it to a friend place if you don't have suitable desktop around).
June 21, 2012 2:33:43 AM

Bizarre additional symptom to add: I've got the older driver installed again (which at least lets me use 1920x1200). I just went to properties of the 6990M under device manager, bringing up the menu with the tabs "general", "driver", "details", and "resources". When i clicked on "details" the monitor off then came back on in 1920x1080. I closed the window I had open, disconnected and reconnected the monitor and it went back to 1920x1200.
June 21, 2012 2:44:35 AM

I have a u3011 and my laptop has a 6970m which works fine with it, it SHOULD work without any issues and shouldn't require a custom driver.

Dell does have a u3011 driver which is handy for getting a few added things working properly, try installing it

EDIT: I just took a look at the ProStar website and it does list your model as having Dual Link DVI. As others have said, this is symptomatic of the display only running at single link speeds. There could be a broken connector on the board, I would suggest RMAing your laptop and/or returning it.
June 22, 2012 12:34:19 PM

thanks for reply. I'm working on getting the RMA started. Surely that is gong to be a nightmare.

I also noticed that on the AMD site where they list the 6990M specs it indicates that it has DisplayPort 1.2. But on my laptop there is no DisplayPort. WTF? Is it possible that there's a trimmed down version of the card? Either way I'm going to get it returned.
June 22, 2012 6:14:50 PM

mpkrause said:
thanks for reply. I'm working on getting the RMA started. Surely that is gong to be a nightmare.

I also noticed that on the AMD site where they list the 6990M specs it indicates that it has DisplayPort 1.2. But on my laptop there is no DisplayPort. WTF? Is it possible that there's a trimmed down version of the card? Either way I'm going to get it returned.


you do realize that even if the CARD has displayPort 1.2 support doesnt mean the laptop carrier has to build that into the laptop. hell my gpu has mini usb support but i dont have that.
June 22, 2012 7:01:10 PM

mpkrause said:
thanks for reply. I'm working on getting the RMA started. Surely that is gong to be a nightmare.

I also noticed that on the AMD site where they list the 6990M specs it indicates that it has DisplayPort 1.2. But on my laptop there is no DisplayPort. WTF? Is it possible that there's a trimmed down version of the card? Either way I'm going to get it returned.


Laptop video cards are OEM parts. If the manufacturer decides to build it differently they can do so
June 26, 2012 5:52:28 PM

Okay I definitely didn't know that about OEM parts for laptops.

Pinhedd, I tried the Dell u3011 driver but no luck. I did swipe my old dell studio xps13 back from my parents last weekend and gave it a try on the u3011. the xps13 has a displayport connection and it worked fine. the graphics in the xps13 were nvidia 9500.

I am now working with Prostar to get RMA. Hopefully this goes smoothly...

Thanks for the suggestions everyone.
June 26, 2012 9:03:46 PM

Sounds to me like one or more of the differential pairs is busted internally
June 26, 2012 9:09:34 PM

I always though you needed DVI-D or mini/Display port... You do have two DVI outputs though right? Run two DVI to the monitor and enable eyefinity...

Another option, you should have display ports... use them.
June 26, 2012 9:11:41 PM

RussK1 said:
Pretty sure you need DVI-D... You do have two DVI outputs though right? Run two DVI to the monitor and enable eyefinity...


DVI-I carries both Single/Dual link DVI-D and DVI-A. I have a u3011, only a single Dual link DVI-I/D is necessary.
June 26, 2012 9:41:23 PM

Pinhedd said:
DVI-I carries both Single/Dual link DVI-D and DVI-A. I have a u3011, only a single Dual link DVI-I/D is necessary.


You're right. Difference between the two are

DVI-D is Digital -to- Digital format only while -

DVI-I carries both digital and analog formats.


He's on a laptop, couldn't he just use two connections and enable Eyefinity? I know it's been used as a workaround for other high res displays. Notably 4k...
June 26, 2012 10:41:57 PM

RussK1 said:
You're right. Difference between the two are

DVI-D is Digital -to- Digital format only while -

DVI-I carries both digital and analog formats.


He's on a laptop, couldn't he just use two connections and enable Eyefinity? I know it's been used as a workaround for other high res displays. Notably 4k...


Unfortunately, It doesn't work like that. The u3011 is a single display and while it has two Dual-Link DVI inputs only one can be active at any one time.

Dual Link doesn't mean "capable of handling two displays" it means that it has twice the digital bandwidth as single link because there are twice as many differential signalling pairs for the pixel information. Single link has 4 pairs, dual has 8. In single link mode the maximum payload capacity is 2.75 megapixels per frame at 60hz which is just enough for 1920x1200, but a 2560x1600 display clocks in at 4.1 megapixels.
June 26, 2012 11:30:40 PM

I know the difference between Dual and single link DVI.

Looked at the specs u3011 and seen it has two DVI-D inputs so naturally thought that it could be treated as two displays or used to send a signal from a machine not powerful enough to send a 2560x1600 60hz signal through a single DVI.

Eizo 4K dispaly~

http://www.brightsideofnews.com/news/2012/6/18/the-4k-g...

Quote:
For connectivity, we were forced to use two DVI cables (provided by EIZO) to connect the GTX 680 to the EIZO FDH3601. This monitor, as we showed in our preview, has a few drawbacks to it. One of the major drawbacks is that it only accepts two DisplayPort cables or two DVI cables. Each cable drives one half of the monitor rather than having one cable driving the whole monitor, which is a little disappointing. We would've preferred to have a single DisplayPort 1.2 cable and have our 4096 x 2160 resolution that way.


Quote:
This situation was something that we had experienced across the board in Windows when using the NVIDIA GTX 680, only getting the taskbar to cover half of the display. When using the XFX AMD HD 7970, we simply enabled Eyefinity and the system treated the EIZO 4K display as one large display rather than a combination of two displays. Because of this, the entire Windows and Photoshop experience was much more enjoyable and natural with the AMD HD 7970 than it was with the NVIDIA GTX 680. Without a doubt, in this scenario, we would have to say that the AMD card certainly won against the NVIDIA card purely due to better user experience. Although performance was virtually the same, the experience on the HD 7970 easily makes it a better choice in this arena.


June 27, 2012 1:57:53 PM

Update on the problem:
I just took a closer look at the DVI port on the back. Eyesight is not great so I didn't notice this until I used a magnifying glass: 2 of the tiny pins that occupy opposite corners of each square were out of place. In fact, this had occurred in two of the squares. The upper pin in each of the affected squares was pushed down to the bottom. I just took a syringe needle and carefully forced the pins back up to their corner...I'm at work right now but will find out if this fixed the problem when I get home tonight.
June 28, 2012 7:32:27 PM

Grand Finale:

Prostar originally said given the problem I would get RMA and a full refund. No problems. Now the tech support guy, after speaking with the RD department, has done an about-face...they won't do a refund. He says the RD guys said that their connection to the 6990M chip doesn't support 2560x1600. Even though their website indicates that it has a dual link DVI connector (and it is a dual link DVI connector on the outside), I guess that the internal connection only hooks up to it like a single link DVI.

Sooooo anyone want to buy a used Clevo/Prostar laptop?

EDIT: forgot to mention, the bent pins mentioned in the above post were not the culprit.
June 28, 2012 7:44:31 PM

mpkrause said:
Grand Finale:

Prostar originally said given the problem I would get RMA and a full refund. No problems. Now the tech support guy, after speaking with the RD department, has done an about-face...they won't do a refund. He says the RD guys said that their connection to the 6990M chip doesn't support 2560x1600. Even though their website indicates that it has a dual link DVI connector (and it is a dual link DVI connector on the outside), I guess that the internal connection only hooks up to it like a single link DVI.

Sooooo anyone want to buy a used Clevo/Prostar laptop?

EDIT: forgot to mention, the bent pins mentioned in the above post were not the culprit.


I would get a second opinion on that
June 28, 2012 8:03:24 PM

Pinhedd said:
I would get a second opinion on that


Agreed.

From AMD's website:

AMD Radeon™ HD 6990M Graphics


Quote:
Cutting-edge integrated display support
Dual-link DVI with HDCP *12
Max resolution: 2560x1600 *13
DisplayPort 1.2
Max resolution: 2560x1600 *13
Multi-Stream Transport
21.6 Gbps bandwidth
High bit-rate audio
HDMI® 1.4a with Stereoscopic 3D Frame Packing Format, Deep Color, xvYCC wide gamut support, and high bit-rate audio
Max resolution: 1920x1200 *13
VGA
Max resolution: 2048x1536 *13

Footnote *13- "Some custom resolutions require user configuration."


http://www.amd.com/US/PRODUCTS/NOTEBOOK/GRAPHICS/AMD-RA...
June 28, 2012 8:05:57 PM

Who would you suggest? I was thinking of maybe contacting Clevo and some of the other re-sellers to see what they say. Or take it in to my local NCIX or tigerdirect repair guys and see if they know anything?

Forgot to mention that Prostar offered RMA only to replace the graphics card. My problem is I live in Toronto and but bought this laptop in the US. I don't want to go to the expense of getting the laptop across the border twice on the possibility that replacing the card won't change anything. The Prostar tech guy I've been dealing with says that they don't have a 2560x1600 monitor to test the output on, otherwise he would have taken one of the their laptops and tested it for me right away. So I'm kind of stuck now. I'll glady seek out second opinions wherever you suggest (I think the second opinions I've gotten here have been very clear that Prostar should refund the laptop :) 

Also, out of interest Pinhedd, what make/model of laptop have you got the 6970M in?

Thanks for all your suggestions.
June 28, 2012 8:24:05 PM

I have it in an Alienware M17x R3. The difference between the OEM laptop cards and the retail desktop cards is that the signal outputs aren't attached directly to the video card on the laptop models. They're all routed through the OEM's internal backplane and connect to the graphics card through the same connector as the PCIe lanes. If you don't mind taking your laptop apart you can see what I mean. If you're comfortable cleaning it then you can do that too, reseating the card might help because those connectors can be finicky.
June 28, 2012 8:25:08 PM

should be fine with that setup... update your drivers
June 28, 2012 11:04:40 PM

mpkrause said:
Grand Finale:

Prostar originally said given the problem I would get RMA and a full refund. No problems. Now the tech support guy, after speaking with the RD department, has done an about-face...they won't do a refund. He says the RD guys said that their connection to the 6990M chip doesn't support 2560x1600. Even though their website indicates that it has a dual link DVI connector (and it is a dual link DVI connector on the outside), I guess that the internal connection only hooks up to it like a single link DVI.

Sooooo anyone want to buy a used Clevo/Prostar laptop?

EDIT: forgot to mention, the bent pins mentioned in the above post were not the culprit.


threaten or take them to small claims court. always works for me on laptop stuff. they cant advertise something that the laptop doesnt support.
June 29, 2012 1:10:31 AM

So I emailed a bunch of the Clevo rebadgers and Eurocom here in Canada replied:

"AMD cards do not support DVI dual link, you can switch to NVIDIA GTX if DVI DL is required

This is AMD limitation - they support DisplayPort 1.2 instead

We designed P150HM to support both AMD and NV cards but outputs are driven by the VGA cards and not ports.

I hope this helps you to understand better your hardware and its limitations"

Does this make any sense???

I thought about the small claims court thing, and them knowing I'm in Toronto and they're in California means they'll probably just laugh that one off. The cost of going after them isn't worth it... another reason to stick with buying locally I guess.
June 29, 2012 1:15:20 AM

mpkrause said:
So I emailed a bunch of the Clevo rebadgers and Eurocom here in Canada replied:

"AMD cards do not support DVI dual link, you can switch to NVIDIA GTX if DVI DL is required

This is AMD limitation - they support DisplayPort 1.2 instead

We designed P150HM to support both AMD and NV cards but outputs are driven by the VGA cards and not ports.

I hope this helps you to understand better your hardware and its limitations"

Does this make any sense???

I thought about the small claims court thing, and them knowing I'm in Toronto and they're in California means they'll probably just laugh that one off. The cost of going after them isn't worth it... another reason to stick with buying locally I guess.

can you just switch to a displayport then?
June 29, 2012 1:42:01 AM

mpkrause said:
So I emailed a bunch of the Clevo rebadgers and Eurocom here in Canada replied:

"AMD cards do not support DVI dual link, you can switch to NVIDIA GTX if DVI DL is required

This is AMD limitation - they support DisplayPort 1.2 instead

We designed P150HM to support both AMD and NV cards but outputs are driven by the VGA cards and not ports.

I hope this helps you to understand better your hardware and its limitations"

Does this make any sense???

I thought about the small claims court thing, and them knowing I'm in Toronto and they're in California means they'll probably just laugh that one off. The cost of going after them isn't worth it... another reason to stick with buying locally I guess.


That actually does make a little bit of sense. It's a more thorough answer to be sure. They never advertised anywhere on their site that the laptop was capable of 2560x1600. Their NVidia page mentions it, the AMD page does not. My 6970m connects through either HDMI or mini-DisplayPort, no DVI output on my M17x R3. I wonder if they'd be willing to upsell you an NVidia card.

The desktop cards definitely support dual link DVI though
June 29, 2012 1:54:46 AM

cbrunnem said:
can you just switch to a displayport then?


Problem is there's only HDMI and DVI ports. Like Pinhedd suggested, I'll see if they will switch to an nVidia card, like the 675M. The newer P150EM laptops they sell have 670, 675, and 680M options and it looks like the exact same laptop except it has a modified back cover to allow for a display port as well.

To save the hassle and cost of sending it over the border and back (they pay for shipping but not customs) I'll see if Eurocom or other Canadian versions of Clevo will do the upgrade.
June 29, 2012 12:32:00 PM

mpkrause said:
Problem is there's only HDMI and DVI ports. Like Pinhedd suggested, I'll see if they will switch to an nVidia card, like the 675M. The newer P150EM laptops they sell have 670, 675, and 680M options and it looks like the exact same laptop except it has a modified back cover to allow for a display port as well.

To save the hassle and cost of sending it over the border and back (they pay for shipping but not customs) I'll see if Eurocom or other Canadian versions of Clevo will do the upgrade.


There should be no customs fees if you declare the package to be a warranty return. I usually ship returns with FedEx.
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