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Lawsuit against Dell

by bglines / June 30, 2010 5:23 AM PDT
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Dell Lawsuit
by kedscnet / June 30, 2010 8:43 AM PDT
In reply to: Lawsuit against Dell

This suit is based on bad capacitors used in MANY manufacturers' PCs.

Generally, the bad caps were used in desktop units. The problem was resolved 4-5 years ago, and chances of bad caps in any newer machine are low. This problem could re-occur, however, as long as Far East suppliers continue to supply cheaply made components. Any one with unusual failures might want to check the system board components for any unusual appearing parts (if not under warranty). If a warranty system board replacement is done, a check of the old board should be done before the technician leaves.

A large problem with the way computers are built today is that there is no real quality control for the components. Years ago, the USA lost most all RAM chip manufacturing to the Far East. US manufacturers did extensive testing of all chips, while the East did little or no testing, being willing to replace faulty chips in the field; this was the cheaper route. In the last few years, fully half of the after-market RAM modules I have purchased were faulty, even from the so-called "quality" suppliers.

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The focus of the suit
by bglines / June 30, 2010 2:16 PM PDT
In reply to: Dell Lawsuit

From my point of view, the focus of the suit isn't necessarily the bad capacitors but the fact that Dell know about the problem and didn't disclose it to their consumers.

It is very similar to how they are handling a current heat problem in their 15" Studio line of laptops running Intel I7 processors. They won't admit the problem but will say they tried to fix it... They won't admit to a cooling issue but will admit that there may be a problem when the screen is opened because it covers the only cooling exhaust port. Not very congruent statements. In my case, they will replace my Studio 15 laptop after seeing the CPU core temps and external chassis readings (done via IR thermometer double checked against ambient temperature)... They said they don't accept any third party utilities as evidence, even though these are industry proven tools, but upon seeing the temperature readings (CPU) via remote desktop administration, they immediately offered a replacement.

Odd. "We don't have a problem but will replace your laptop because of unsafe temp readings"

Sorry, forgot to mention this is not an isolated case. I'm into my 3rd such replacement... And the forums are full of such problems with their Studio 15s...

In my opinion, this shows a trend that Dell quality has plummeted in quality and in light of the quality issue even they won't admit it when they have a widespread design issue. Once incident of "we didn't know.." can be an "oops" or mistake. Multiple occurrences of uncommunicated problems across multiple product lines is a behavior pattern.

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by kedscnet / June 30, 2010 2:47 PM PDT
In reply to: The focus of the suit

One issue that Dell doesn't seem to want to address in cases of high temperatures is that of poor heat transfer from the CPU/GPU to the heat pipes. In many cases, a system board is replaced, but the old CPU is inserted into the board. It's possible that the repairman does not clean and apply new heat transfer paste to the CPU/cooler surfaces, and may not use a new heat transfer pad with the GPU. Some have gone inside and replaced the transfer media and obtained improved cooling. Some have also found loose heat pipes. My only personal experience was in trying to repair a bad DC socked in my daughter's laptop. There was very little paste on the CPU; only about 1/3 of the surface possessed paste. She was not having any thermal problems, but she doesn't stress the laptop.

Yes, the capacitors are an issue, because when a potential high cost recall is being faced by any company (can you say Toyota?), common sense and judgement seem to fly out the window. As in politics, the cover-up is much worse than the problem.

Some of the comments in these posts seem to show continuing obfuscation by support people with some problems, usually thermal. Any time a thermal problem arises in a laptop, after considering dust bunnies and bad fans, you must look at the CPU/GPU heat transfer. There is almost nothing else on the system board that will cause high temperatures. The chipset and RAM are contributers, but at much lower levels than CPU/GPU. Another possible problem is a faulty heat pipe, I have heard of only one case where the pipe is faulty. There is really no way to easily test a pipe except replacement. With system board replacements, the old pipe is always reused.

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by bglines / July 1, 2010 4:27 AM PDT
In reply to: Overheating

Gotta ya. Yeah, Dell has a reputation of replacement without taking a variable out of the equation. That being the heat pipe and CPU... They have a poor design with only one ventilation fan and exhaust port. Most I7 laptops I have seen have 4 exhaust ports. Not much of an improvement but at east it allows for more airflow.

As the lawsuit alleges, and I fully believe based on experience, Dell avoids releasing information about faulty designs and, from what I've read, almost aways moves with replacement parts. Not as user friendly move when most of these problems have been identified in the first couple days of ownership. "Here's you new laptop, but we need to crack it open and try to resolve your cooling problem with replacement parts that match what's already in your machine." Using existing parts doesn't address the issue.

The only case where I've seen the issue resolved resulted in the user, technically savvy, getting Dell to send him a new MB, CPU, Fan, heatsink. The prior fix was done by a "Dell Technician" and didn't work.

To this day, Dell won't admit to the problem. Same issue as the lawsuit I say. And this issue and Dell's overall design is part of the reason BestBuy won't stock the Dell Studio line with the i7....

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by kedscnet / July 1, 2010 9:24 AM PDT
In reply to: Heat

Yes, I think their recent single fan designs are a little edgy. A single fan/heat pipe for a 15" laptop is usually OK unless a top end CPU is used. This ***-U-MES proper installation, which doesn't always occur. My M1530 is fine, with no cooling problems. However, I don't over-clock or play demanding games. A 17" laptop with a single fan may be a problem because of the larger volume results in lower air flow rates. I don't know why the first attempted repair isn't to check out proper heat transfer. Maybe it's easier to replace the system board(???). There is really nothing on a new system board that would cause high temperatures other than CPU/GPU, and only the GPU is replaced by a system board in most machines. The high probability sources of heat are still in the machine after the repair: bad thermal conduction of a faulty heat pipe itself. Heat pipes contain only small amounts of working fluid, which could be quite variable considering the low cos for everything in a laptop.

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Replacement Issues
by _Tedmouse / October 11, 2012 5:01 PM PDT
In reply to: Dell

Time 10/12/2012

Though many years later dell still has problems letting their customers know that they have faulty parts.
and have many issues with their warranty service's
One such problem i faced was trying to get dell to replace my faulty fans in my alienware 17x rev 2. i had a full 3 year hardware warranty and they said that they could not check my system until i had a software warranty! I was stunned they refused to help me until i had the software warranty; they insisted that i had software issues when i noticed it would crash after i turned on a game or left it on. Um huh ok dell your right i guess the customer is always wrong, I'm so sorry to doubt you!(sarcasm) after arguing for hours one dude in a different department agreed to check my laptop out by using his software to find out that i had a overheating issue due to a faulty fan. The right side fan that is. They sent a guy to replace it and he has never taken apart a dell alienware before so he had to look up the instruction on how to on his phone, his phone! Well after he was done he turned on the laptop and my led keyboard was not working and there were grinding sounds coming from my laptop. apparently the fan was replaced with another bad fan, I talked to the tech before he left he said there was nothing he could do and that i need to contact dell if there is any more issues are to resolve this new one in front of me. I asked him if it was a new fan, he replied it's a old restored one and that it works.

So dells services have gotten worse from 2008-2012 and even on the phone I hear computer is not working? Try turning it off then back on again. Along with many other check to see if it works this way then get off phone if it does. Very customer unfriendly.
Except they have great selling service! We sell you new computer every 1-2 years!
whats funny about this? Simple your computer dies within 3-4 years

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