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HP Zbook 15 G1 - Dual-Core to Quad-Core i7 CPU Upgrade Possible?


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tl;dr: Has anyone tested upgrading a dual-core Zbook 15 G1 to a quad-core CPU?




So, as the tittle goes, I currently own a Dual-Core Zbook 15 G1 which came factory-equiped with a Core i7-4600M CPU (2c4t).

I'm currently planning to upgrade it with a 4800MQ or a 4900MQ (both 4c8t) if possible.


Here's the thing, though: The service manual for this particular model lists different system board assemblies for dual-core (SPS: 734303-XXX) and quad-core (SPS: 734304-XXX) computers. A quick visual inspection of pictures found online tells me the only obvious difference is the lack of the two additional RAM slots under the keyboard[1], which I guess makes sense as a dual-core CPU would probably not be able to "see" the two extra DIMMs.


I could buy the desired CPUs off Ebay but most sellers won't accept returns in case of incompatibility, as that's the buyer's fault. It would be a shame to spend close to $100 in a CPU only to find it the computer isn't up for it!


I have looked hard in the local market but the best I could find is a Core i7-4710MQ, which is a bit slower than the 4800MQ and it lacks VT-d[2]. They're also asking about $150 for it so yeah, it's overpriced.


So, here's the big question: Has anyone been able to perform a dual-core to quad-core upgrade on this particular system? Or something similar? I guess there's been people would have tried to upgrade their dual-core Sandy Bride/Ivy Bridde EliteBooks to quad-core CPUs as well haha.


I've read about people successfully upgrading their dual-core mobile workstations but they were from different brands, most often Lenovo ThinkPads.


Thanks in advance for your time!



PD: this post was copy-pasted from the one I made in HPs official forums.




[1] Which I fully expected to get when I purchased this machine in used condition, **bleep** dishonest sellers!

[2] Which I plan to use for GPU pass-through under Linux.

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Per the HP Zbook G1 repair and service manual, there are 6 models of motherboards for the system.  3 are for Quadcore only, and 3 are for Dualcore only.  1 of each is reserved for Quadcore and Dualcore systems running Linux.  Also, the i7 is 10 watts TDP higher than the i5, but I don't think that would cause any significant cooling problems.


They do expressly say, "For use only on computer models equipped with an Intel ______ Core processor" in the repair manual, so it's really anyone's guess if it would ACTUALLY work.  Like you said, it's probably to do with the extra DIMM slots, because the i7s handle up to 4 DIMMS and the i5 only 2.  In theory it makes sense that it WOULD work, as long as HP didn't do like, a bios whitelist on installing i7s in i5 motherboards and vice versa (they have been known to do this in the pro-grade laptops).


I would look out for one with a return policy and just try it, so you have the insurance of getting your money back if it doesn't work!  But the official word is that Dualcore motherboards are incompatible with Quadcore CPUs, sadly.

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Ok it seems I'll have to pay a local tech shop to test their 4700MQ on my Zbook. If the 4700MQ boots up and works fine, I see no reason why a 4800MQ or even a 4900MQ wouldn't.


I'll report back when I get the chance to test this.


Thanks for your insightful replies!

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