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Dell XPS 9560 switches off and doesn't start when on battery


Tonsai

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Hi!
I've tried to fix it and I need help. 
My new/refurbished Dell XPS 9560 is a pain. Yesterday I started really using it, for videoediting w DaVinci Resolve, and the laptop switches off abruptly (as if someone would have pulled the plug from a desktop) randomly when on battery power. Battery indicator being anything from 60 to 98%. It refuses to start again while on battery, but if I plug the electricity cable in then i can start it. It has not switched off with AC adapter plugged in.
The fans werent sounding much before switching off, and I generally doubt it is overheating.
I ran the Diagnostics from BIOS, no issues. Battery health 96%, battery manufacturing date 6/4/2021. I also ran battery check from cmd, design capacity and full charge capacity corresponds to battery health 96%. Have updated BIOS, with Dell supportAssist ran diagnostics, checked and installed all drivers. I can find no issues.
At least two of 3 switch-off events happened when i was exporting a vid. Googled, people write such stuff could be CPU or MB overheating, - but then for me it does NOT happen if i am on AC power, so I doubt its overheating.. 
I checked the reliability report. When DaVinci stopped working, the fault module ntdll.dll
 I have 16gb RAM, intel i7 (4cores) 2.80GHz, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 4gb which is ok for DaVinci. Can it be the battery unable to hold the charge when stressed (export is demanding)? 
Drivers????
 I need this laptop to work; if I return it to the vendor I might not find another one here in Sweden that fits my specs. Should I ask the refurb vendor for a new battery if that's even possible? Should I live with it? 

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I wouldn't want to live with this...

 

I am doubting that this is a software issue at all and I can't see drivers causing the system to abruptly power off.

 

I think that most likely it is just a bad battery.  I'm assuming that this is not under warranty with Dell?  (Dell does offer a one-year warranty on Dell Outlet systems, but it sounds like you got it from someplace else.)  You can check the warranty status at dell.com/support, and if it does happen to be covered then you can just have Dell replace the battery.

 

Otherwise, here's what I would do.

  • Open it up and see if the battery is even a genuine Dell battery.  Non-Dell batteries seem to be problematic more often than not.
  • Reseat the battery cable while you are in there.  (Probably won't fix it but you never know...)
  • Replace the battery.  See if you can get your vendor to do this; clearly, it has a problem.  If they can't/won't source a genuine Dell battery, it's probably worth buying one on your own if you want to keep the system.
  • If the issue still occurs with a new (Dell) battery, I think you're looking at replacing the motherboard.

In any case, you shouldn't wait long before raising the issue with your vendor in case the system has some kind of return window that you could miss.

Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch, 2023 (personal) • Dell Precision 7560 (work) • Full specs in spoiler block below
Info posts (Dell) — Dell Precision key postsDell driver RSS feeds • Dell Fan Management — override fan behavior
Info posts (Windows) — Turbo boost toggle • The problem with Windows 11 • About Windows 10 LTSC

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Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch, 2023 (personal)

  • M2 Max
    • 4 efficiency cores
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    • 38-core Apple GPU
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  • 8TB SSD
  • macOS 14 "Sonoma"
  • 16.2" 3456×2234 120 Hz mini-LED VRR display
  • Wi-Fi 6E + Bluetooth 5.3
  • 99.6Wh battery
  • 1080p webcam
  • Fingerprint reader

Also — iPhone 12 Pro 512GB, Apple Watch Series 8

 

Dell Precision 7560 (work)

  • Intel Xeon W-11955M ("Tiger Lake")
    • 8×2.6 GHz base, 5.0 GHz turbo, hyperthreading ("Willow Cove")
  • 64GB DDR4-3200 ECC
  • NVIDIA RTX A2000 4GB
  • Storage:
    • 512GB system drive (Micron 2300)
    • 4TB additional storage (Sabrent Rocket Q4)
  • Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2021
  • 15.6" 3940×2160 IPS display
  • Intel Wi-Fi AX210 (Wi-Fi 6E + Bluetooth 5.3)
  • 95Wh battery
  • 720p IR webcam
  • Fingerprint reader

 

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3 hours ago, Aaron44126 said:

Otherwise, here's what I would do.

  • Open it up and see if the battery is even a genuine Dell battery.  Non-Dell batteries seem to be problematic more often than not.
  • Reseat the battery cable while you are in there.  (Probably won't fix it but you never know...)
  • Replace the battery.  See if you can get your vendor to do this; clearly, it has a problem.  If they can't/won't source a genuine Dell battery, it's probably worth buying one on your own if you want to keep the system.
  • If the issue still occurs with a new (Dell) battery, I think you're looking at replacing the motherboard

Thank you!!!! This was a very clear and detailed answer. 

I bought the laptop refurbished and am getting in touch with the vendor. No idea how they work, so I really hope they will agree to send me just a new battery. If they want me to send the whole laptop back i dunno what I'm gonna do since I really need it. 

Dell warranty has expired, I checked on their website. It's just the vendor's 30 days' return right and their 1 year warranty. 

A question.. If all else fails, would it be dumb to keep it in any case, and work on battery power only when I don't have high capacity tasks? Is there a chance the battery can damage the laptop? 

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Some info came up that raised a crucial question.

 

What happens is if I render the vid at 10fps, I can. If I render the vid on max speed, the laptop switches off. Once I understood the issue is with DaVinci video editor I went into DaVinci forums. This rendering issue (max vs 10fps) is known and indicates too low capacity. In this case, low battery capacity, because on AC power there is no problem.

 

Furthermore, this is what I got from guys on DaVinci forum: "In my experience, the only laptops that work well with DR under battery are recent MacBooks. Older MacBooks and all Windows laptops should be on AC power when rendering" and "we had to replace a 2000-watt UPS with our big Mac Pro on some difficult jobs. Now, we have a 3000-watt model and the problems disappeared"
 

So I guess the crucial question I want to ask you since you probably know, is - can a healthy but weak battery react to too high demands in a manner that it abruptly switches down the laptop (as if a plug would be pulled and you lose all your progress ofc) and refuses to start unless I connect it to AC adapter? 
If yes, I have my answer. If no, then the battery gotta be faulty and might cause damage to the laptop, I might need to look for another battery or laptop if the vendor doesnt cooperate


 

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Yeah, I was thinking that this could be an issue with the battery not being able to provide high power output. The system should not abruptly power off, no matter what load you throw at it. I’m still thinking the battery is the most likely culprit and I would not be the least bit surprised if it is a poor-quality non-Dell battery put in there by your refurb vendor, which would explain its apparent healthiness but poor behavior.

Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch, 2023 (personal) • Dell Precision 7560 (work) • Full specs in spoiler block below
Info posts (Dell) — Dell Precision key postsDell driver RSS feeds • Dell Fan Management — override fan behavior
Info posts (Windows) — Turbo boost toggle • The problem with Windows 11 • About Windows 10 LTSC

Spoiler

Apple MacBook Pro 16-inch, 2023 (personal)

  • M2 Max
    • 4 efficiency cores
    • 8 performance cores
    • 38-core Apple GPU
  • 96GB LPDDR5-6400
  • 8TB SSD
  • macOS 14 "Sonoma"
  • 16.2" 3456×2234 120 Hz mini-LED VRR display
  • Wi-Fi 6E + Bluetooth 5.3
  • 99.6Wh battery
  • 1080p webcam
  • Fingerprint reader

Also — iPhone 12 Pro 512GB, Apple Watch Series 8

 

Dell Precision 7560 (work)

  • Intel Xeon W-11955M ("Tiger Lake")
    • 8×2.6 GHz base, 5.0 GHz turbo, hyperthreading ("Willow Cove")
  • 64GB DDR4-3200 ECC
  • NVIDIA RTX A2000 4GB
  • Storage:
    • 512GB system drive (Micron 2300)
    • 4TB additional storage (Sabrent Rocket Q4)
  • Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2021
  • 15.6" 3940×2160 IPS display
  • Intel Wi-Fi AX210 (Wi-Fi 6E + Bluetooth 5.3)
  • 95Wh battery
  • 720p IR webcam
  • Fingerprint reader

 

Previous

  • Dell Precision 7530, 7510, M4800, M6700
  • Dell Latitude E6520
  • Dell Inspiron 1720, 5150
  • Dell Latitude CPi
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I might have found the problem and the solution!
A bit incredible but.. THE POWER PLAN. In the power plan the cooling fans were inactive in battery mode (advanced power settings - processor power management - system cooling policy(battery) - it was set to Passive and I changed it to Active now). The laptop switched off in a typical overheating fashion with no warning when CPU was on high load and heating up, but the CPU cooling was inactive and on passive mode when running on battery!! It was CPU overheating!
I did a short export already with the cooling on (in active mode), on battery power, and the laptop didn't switch off! I will still test but I think this was the problem!

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  • 1 month later...

That would make sense since if it's not turing on the fans while rendering it would go into overheat protection. 

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