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Aspire iDea 500

pyor6

Novice Member
It is sometime since I last contributed. Many thanks for advice already received. I have an Idea 500 running on 3 Gb RAM and a 500Gb WD hard drive with Windows 7. The system occasionally pauses to upload while watching TV. I have the original CPU but would like to upgrade this. I tried a T7600 but this would not boot up and I assumed it was specific to the Idea 510. I have also tried a T2600 but the system will not boot up with this also.

I may have made an error in purchase. I note that the original CPU is SL9S(5?)D. The code for the one I purchased is SL8VN. Is this the reason for the failure and should I look for a T2600 SL9SD?

Thanks in advance.
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
The last time I had a 500 it had a Core Duo T2300E (SL9DM) as standard, I did not keep this machine but I did play around with it a little. The Acer iDea 500 needs to be flashed with the BIOS from the 510 in order to support processors from the T5xxx and T7xxx range.

The T2600 (SL8VN) should be working without the BIOS upgrade though, can you confirm your T2600 is SL8VN?

The highest end processor I had running on the 500 was a Core 2 Duo T7200 (SL9SF) but there should be no reason why the T7600 (SL9SD) should not be working unless you have had some bad luck and got faulty processors.

When you install the new processors does the system display an image at all or does it hang at POST?
 

pyor6

Novice Member
The last time I had a 500 it had a Core Duo T2300E (SL9DM) as standard, I did not keep this machine but I did play around with it a little. The Acer iDea 500 needs to be flashed with the BIOS from the 510 in order to support processors from the T5xxx and T7xxx range.

The T2600 (SL8VN) should be working without the BIOS upgrade though, can you confirm your T2600 is SL8VN?

The highest end processor I had running on the 500 was a Core 2 Duo T7200 (SL9SF) but there should be no reason why the T7600 (SL9SD) should not be working unless you have had some bad luck and got faulty processors.

When you install the new processors does the system display an image at all or does it hang at POST?
Thanks John for the swift response. I confirm that the T2600 is an SL8VN. I tried to flash the BIOS for a 510 but got a message that the file was too large. So not too surprised that T7600 did not work. Both processors hang at POST.
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
The BIOS update reporting as being to large is strange, as far as I can remember it flashed easily. The good news is that hanging at POST is the same symptom I got before I flashed the 510 BIOS, after getting it flashed you should be fine to upgrade.

I keep a lot of files and notes from various upgrade attempts on the iDea range I've done over the years, I'll try to have a look through and find the update files I used on the 500.
 

pyor6

Novice Member
John,
Thanks very much. That would be great. I look forward to receiving them. Do you need my email address to send the file? I may need a word or two of instruction also to be on the safe side!
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
John,
Thanks very much. That would be great. I look forward to receiving them. Do you need my email address to send the file? I may need a word or two of instruction also to be on the safe side!
Before going forward I recommend you take a backup of your existing BIOS first, this can be done using WinFlash or Universal BIOS Backup Toolkit (Universal BIOS Backup Toolkit

There is a zip file attached containing an ISO image that will need to be burned to a CD or DVD, I use ImgBurn (The Official ImgBurn Website for burning ISO images but pretty much any burning software will do.

Once you have burned the disk you need to boot from it, reboot your system with the disk inserted and press F12 at POST and this will give you the boot menu. Select CDROM from the boot menu, press enter and allow the system to boot into DOS. When the command prompt appears type "update" and press enter, from there follow the on screen instructions.

As with any BIOS update, this is risky so only go ahead if you are 100% sure you know it could go wrong and could leave your system non functional. This was successful for me when I updated an iDea 500 with a newer CPU but I cannot offer any guarantees.
 

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Deleted member 647608

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Hello,

Processor - Core 2 Duo T7600 2.33GHz - SL9SD.

This is the max as far as I have tested, there is a possibility of a T7600G achieving more if the Acer BIOS will allow a multiplier change with a T7600G installed.

John
If you find a T7600G you can give it a try with Throttle Stop.
Heatsink surface look quite rough, lapping it could be a good idea.

I installed T7600 today and make a standard test with IntelBurnTest.
Result was ok. The max cpu temp measured by Core Temp was 74° C. in idle is about 47-48° C.
 

pyor6

Novice Member
Before going forward I recommend you take a backup of your existing BIOS first, this can be done using WinFlash or Universal BIOS Backup Toolkit (Universal BIOS Backup Toolkit

There is a zip file attached containing an ISO image that will need to be burned to a CD or DVD, I use ImgBurn (The Official ImgBurn Website for burning ISO images but pretty much any burning software will do.

Once you have burned the disk you need to boot from it, reboot your system with the disk inserted and press F12 at POST and this will give you the boot menu. Select CDROM from the boot menu, press enter and allow the system to boot into DOS. When the command prompt appears type "update" and press enter, from there follow the on screen instructions.

As with any BIOS update, this is risky so only go ahead if you are 100% sure you know it could go wrong and could leave your system non functional. This was successful for me when I updated an iDea 500 with a newer CPU but I cannot offer any guarantees.
John,
Thanks very much again. I am in process of moving house and have only just been able to follow through. I followed your advice closely and with great success. I now have a working computer with an updated BIOS and a T7600, 2.3 GHz CPU working perfectly.

*****

In the process of upgrading I removed the front fascia to correct a fault with the on/of button and disconnected the cable to the infra-red and VFdisplay. When I now reconnect this, the computer fails to power on. Is this a fault with the cable or have the VFD and I-R cards blown? For my purposes, the computer runs as required, so these functions are not essential for me but would be useful. Any advice from members would be appreciated.
 
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JohnAddison

Active Member
John,
Thanks very much again. I am in process of moving house and have only just been able to follow through. I followed your advice closely and with great success. I now have a working computer with an updated BIOS and a T7600, 2.3 GHz CPU working perfectly.

*****

In the process of upgrading I removed the front fascia to correct a fault with the on/of button and disconnected the cable to the infra-red and VFdisplay. When I now reconnect this, the computer fails to power on. Is this a fault with the cable or have the VFD and I-R cards blown? For my purposes, the computer runs as required, so these functions are not essential for me but would be useful. Any advice from members would be appreciated.
Sorry for the late reply.

I'm glad the CPU upgrade is now working :), a T7600 gives them a kick in the right direction.

As to the new problem, this is usually the PSU or more specifically a couple of bad capacitors in the PSU. I have in the past repaired PSU's to correct this fault but its easier to replace the PSU. The good news is the replacement PSU's are quite common and cheap on eBay - 120W PFC PSU Acer Aspire iDea 500 510 FSP120-40GLS PY.12008.002 Power Supply PSU | eBay
 
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pyor6

Novice Member
John

Finally found time in the house move and aftermath to fit new PSU purchased following your link. Worked first time and back to full working order. Now to see what problems Windows 10 will bring. Again many thanks for help and advice
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
John

Finally found time in the house move and aftermath to fit new PSU purchased following your link. Worked first time and back to full working order. Now to see what problems Windows 10 will bring. Again many thanks for help and advice
Glad it worked :)

I did brief test on Windows 10 and drivers were not an issue, however I did not test the GeForce GO 7600 drivers from Vista - I had my HD2400 installed. As far as I know the only Windows 10 problem is the VFD software not working, I have not had the time to look at this yet though.
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
If you find a T7600G you can give it a try with Throttle Stop.
Heatsink surface look quite rough, lapping it could be a good idea.

I installed T7600 today and make a standard test with IntelBurnTest.
Result was ok. The max cpu temp measured by Core Temp was 74° C. in idle is about 47-48° C.
I managed to get a T7600G at a reasonable price this week, I paid £55 inc shipping - this was probably a bit on the high side considering the age of the CPU but not too bad.

The CPU works fine, it defaults to 2.33GHz and will work just like the standard T7600. The BIOS was never built with the T7600G in mind so a multiplier setting is not available but ThrottleStop functions very well. It allowed me change the multiplier and so far I've had my 510 running at 2.5GHz and 2.66GHz, no voltage increase is required for these speeds with the example I have.

Even better news is that ThrottleStop will allow voltage control, so I did a very brief run at 2.8GHz which required a tiny increase in voltage but I don't recommend this due to the increase in temperature.

As meravigliato points out the heatsink surfaces are very rough and lapping could not hurt but I'm also going to try and pick up a scrap 500/510 so I can work on some case mods to increase airflow. In theory this could be pushed beyond 3GHz but that's for another day after I have looked at cooling mods, so for the time being I have left it at the default 2.33GHz.

At least we know it works now :)
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
Got a little bit of hope for people with Windows 10 VFD problems - I let my iDea 510 do an in place upgrade from Windows 7 Ultimate to Windows 10 Pro (x86) and after the upgrade the VFD remained fully functional.

I'm guessing there is some WMC dependency that's carried over in the upgrade process that allows this, I'm looking into the issue at the moment to see if a fix can be found and hopefully allow the VFD to work on a fresh install.

VFD aside, Windows 10 is performing very well on my 510 :)
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
VFD Workaround

It's taken me a little while longer than expected to get around to looking at the VFD issue but I do now have a workaround. This has only been tested on Windows 10 x86 at the moment, I will try and check this with Windows 8 but the instructions are the same so if anyone wants to try it on Windows 8 please let me know your results. It's not a massive pain not to have the VFD working but I quite like it displaying the time :)

As I posted previously, if you install Windows 7 plus the VFD software and then do an in place upgrade to Windows 10 then the VFD will remain functional. I was convinced that some dependency was being carried over from Windows 7 during the upgrade process that allowed this to happen but it looks like I was wrong. This post will describe the steps I took to allow the VFD to work on a fresh Windows 10 install using just the normal VFD software.

Following a fresh Windows 10 installation and before you install the VFD software complete the following steps:

1. Open device manager and expand the "Universal Serial Bus Controllers" section.

2. You need to identify a specific one of three "USB Composite Device" that are listed.

3. You are looking for the device on "Port_#0001.Hub_#0006".


3. Once identified right click on the device and click "Uninstall".


4. Click "OK" to confirm device uninstall and wait for a moment for it to complete.


5. Right click on the computer name at the top of the device manager tree, click "Scan for hardware changes" and wait for a moment for it to complete.


6. Close device manager.

7. Install the Acer VFD software as you would on Windows 7 and below and follow the installers instructions including allowing the system to reboot at the end.

Enjoy your working VFD :) I'm not certain why this resolves the issue but I'm just happy that it works.

Antenna Upgrade


While I'm on the subject I picked up another Acer iDea 510 from eBay, it looked quite good in the pictures but it ended up being a bit of a pig that was badly packaged but it was salvageable. I've upgraded it to a similar specification to my existing unit but while I had it stripped down I did the extra antenna upgrade to go with an 802.11n card.


 
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fpatera

Novice Member
HI all. For all upgrade to windows 10 i have a question. I try a fresh install of w10 all works great but i dont find the original drive of mobility radeon hd 2400. I have to download windows 8 version in compatibily mode? Or i have to use windows driver?
Thanks for your support.
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
HI all. For all upgrade to windows 10 i have a question. I try a fresh install of w10 all works great but i dont find the original drive of mobility radeon hd 2400. I have to download windows 8 version in compatibily mode? Or i have to use windows driver?
Thanks for your support.
I have let Windows 10 automatically grab the latest driver via Windows Update, these work perfectly.
 

paulroberts

Novice Member
Glad to see people still posting here, I haven't been here for a while, I think posted around page 19!

Well I still have my 510, I use it constantly, it has been rock solid and since I last fixed my PSU several years ago it's been fine. I have upgraded the WiFi card to 'n' but only using 1 antenna, so I may try the double antenna mod sometime, is there a parts list?

I am still running Win7 with MCE, quite happy with this so don't really have a need to change. I have noticed the system struggles a bit with 1080 content, so I was interesting in upgrading the CPU and GPU. In fact my reason for posting was I came across a T5750 CPU for a fiver so thought I would give that a go, but the system will not boot and I get nothing on either the HDMI or VGA output. Anyone know why this CPU won't work because its very similar to the stock T5500, see this list from Intel:

Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor T5000 Series

Cheers,

Paul
 
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JohnAddison

Active Member
The second antenna upgrade is pretty straight forward but its worth noting I did this when I had the system fully disassembled, this was done to avoid any swarf from drilling the hole finding its way to somewhere vital. Be very careful removing the motherboard, it would be easy to damage a couple of surface mount components on the bottom of the board.

1 * U.FL IPX to RP-SMA cable
1 * SMA antenna
1 * 6mm Hole

Windows 7 is the best OS choice for a 510 with the original graphics card due to driver issues with newer versions of Windows, Windows 10 works great on a maxed out 510 but it requires a graphics card upgrade.

The T5750 is a Socket P processor, the Acer iDea is only compatible with Socket M processors. Both Socket P and M have 478 pins but they are not electrically compatible.

One of the most cost effective compatible CPU upgrades is the Core 2 Duo T7200 2GHz (SL9SF), these can be had for under £7.50 inc P&P most of the time on eBay. I never had any problems with 1080p when I ran with a T7200 but if you want to max it out there is always the Core 2 Duo T7600 2.33GHz (SL9SD), these have dropped to around £30 lately.

I wrote up a quick upgrade summary a while back that I keep updated now and again - Aspire iDea Upgrades
 

paulroberts

Novice Member
Thanks John, I couldn't find anyone selling 6mm holes so guess I'll have to make one myself! ;-)

Found the other bits on amazon for the princely sum of £3.05. Also noticed an 802.11ac wifi card for 22 quid, so may try that at some point (Intel 7260.HMWWBR - Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260: Amazon.co.uk: Electronics)

I didn't realise the T5750 was a different socket, I couldn't see anything on that list from Intel. Somewhat annoying but it was only a fiver.

I don't have any plans to upgrade Windows, I hear they dropped MCE from Windows 10 anyway.

Cheers,

Paul
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
Yea, those 6mm holes can be elusive :) Since I posted the pic I've upgraded the antennas from the standard parts that shipped with Acer iDea's to some chunky looking 10dBi units to try and get the best signal I can.

The wireless card you linked to on amazon will not work in these systems as they only have Mini PCI slots, the card linked requires Mini PCI Express. I am not aware of any 802.11ac Mini PCI cards at the moment, I would be surprised if any will ever be produced.

There are adapters that will convert a Mini PCI slot to Mini PCI Express but I've never looked at them too seriously - Flexible MiniPCI to MiniPCI Express Adapter - Amfeltec

Yea, I noticed from the link you posted that Intel seem to have removed the socket information for the specification but it used to be there. I will update my summary with a compatibility list I think, the Socket P issue has come up before.
 

leafmann

Novice Member
I am trying to source a UJ225S, but can only find "Panasonic UJ-225 Blu-Ray Burner Writer BD-RE Slot-in Slim Internal Drive G568C" on ebay. Does anyone know what the difference is?
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
I am trying to source a UJ225S, but can only find "Panasonic UJ-225 Blu-Ray Burner Writer BD-RE Slot-in Slim Internal Drive G568C" on ebay. Does anyone know what the difference is?
I would not read too much into the labelling, my drive label shows UJ-225 but in device manager it reports itself as a UJ-225S and as far as I know they are not separate models.

G568C is the Dell part number for a UJ-225 from what I can tell, various OEM's will have their own part numbers for what is essentially the same Matsh ita / Panasonic drive.

One thing to watch out for is a lot of UJ-225 drives on eBay come without a bezel and while its not visible you do need a drive with a bezel so the eject button will work correctly. There are sellers on eBay you can provide the bezel by itself if you end up buying a drive without one.
 

leafmann

Novice Member
JohnAddison and great - thank you for your prompt and reassuring replies. I have ordered the UJ-225, and will verify the bezel issue. On my 510 I have replaced one blown PSU, upgraded hard disk, 3GB, Win10, waiting for UJ225 and 8600M deliveries. I will upgrade processor later.
 

leafmann

Novice Member
I received video card part VG.8PG06.001, installed and no output to DVI for BIOS screen or windows. I let it run until Windows had loaded and after replacing the original video card I noticed that Windows update was loading an update "NVIDIA driver update for NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT".

Any ideas? Any BIOS setting requiring change?
 

JohnAddison

Active Member
Hey, so I just completed the "second antenna upgrade", this is awesome, my wifi throughput has tripled! You can read about it and see some pics here:

Adding a second wifi antenna to Acer Idea 500/510

Cheers,

Paul
Nice :) I got a similar increase in speed, overall its well worth doing. If my memory is right the factory 802.11g card had two antenna connections, it makes you wonder why Acer never bothered shipping with two antennas as standard.

I received video card part VG.8PG06.001, installed and no output to DVI for BIOS screen or windows. I let it run until Windows had loaded and after replacing the original video card I noticed that Windows update was loading an update "NVIDIA driver update for NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT".

Any ideas? Any BIOS setting requiring change?
No changes are required, VG.8PG06.001 is a drop in replacement. Was the part new or used? Genuinely new ones are thin on the ground these days, occasionally I've picked up used VG.8PG06.001 that had the graphics BIOS flashed with something other than what the card ships with (for use in another manufactures system etc.) which caused the same symptoms. The VG.8PG06.001 graphics BIOS used on the cards I tested successfully was I think 60.84.62.00.29.

If it was used it could be worth asking the previous owner what system it was pulled from and if the BIOS was ever flashed, it could also be DOA :(
 
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