Samsung Q1 goes under the knife again: more RAM is the diagnosis

86 Comments

Q1_512 Well, since my two week return actually expired yesterday, it looks like I’m keeping the Samsung Q1 UMPC. I’ll have a full review and my reasoning as soon as I can. I actually thought my 14-days expired today, but James set me straight via a Skype video chat this morning. It was actually difficult to understand him because he was using the Sony UX; the conversation was in Japanese with English subtitles. ;)

So "Sammy" went under the knife again. This time it wasn’t just to see his private parts, it was to upgrade his memory from 512 MB to 1 GB of DDR2 RAM. You can see by my snipping here that he was only functioning with half his capable memory, so a planned purchase from last week that was sitting in a box was the ticket. Just why do they need a 1 cubic foot box for a small RAM module, anyway? Well, that’s besides the point: if you’re a faithful watcher of E.R. or just want to know how to upgrade the RAM on a Q1, this one’s for you.

BEFORE I BEGIN: if you decide to upgrade your Sammy, you’re on your own in terms of liability meaning: don’t blame me if something breaks! I’m sure that the warranty is void as well, so keep that in mind when making this choice.

DISCLAIMER #2: I didn’t think to boot into the AVS Station software after the upgrade, but Ramon did. He reports that the Windows XP Embedded side doesn’t boot after the upgrade and I confirmed the same behavior. I’ll be researching, but in the meantime, you should be aware of this issue.

You’ll need a small Philips-head screwdriver and a 1 GB DDR2-533 SODIMM, 200-pin replacement chip which can easily be found online. At the time of this writing, expect to pay between $108 and $185 for this. The first step is to make sure the device is powered down, unplugged and has the battery removed. Then, carefully remove the six screws that I’ve highlighted below.

Q1_ram_1

Once the screws are removed, the back cover of the case can be removed. Be very careful as there are two small "teeth", one on the left side and one the right side that keep the front and back together. Don’t rush this step. Once you’ve removed the back case, you’ll see the 512 MB RAM module in the center of Sammy’s guts.

Q1_512_1

See the two silver clips, one on each side of the RAM chip? Those are what keep the SODIMM module held in place. Carefully slide each clip away from the module, from inside to outside. Don’t be alarmed when the RAM chip pops up at a 45-degree angle; the clips are what hold it down, so this is expected.

Q1_45

Now the the 512 MB module is sticking up, carefully slide it out at the same angle from the memory bank. Once removed, you simply reverse the instructions by sliding the 1 GB module in at an angle, gently press it down flat against Sammy and move the silver clips back in place to hold it down. Once completed, you’ll see your 1 GB memory module in place and you can carefully replace the cover.

Q1_1gb

After all of the screws are back in place and Sammy is one piece again, you can replace the battery and or plug in the AC adapter. Once Sammy has a power source, just boot back up; there’s no need to make any adjustments in the BIOS as the Q1 and Windows XP will automatically identify and use the additional memory as evidenced by the below snipping after boot-up.

Q11gb_1

Although I haven’t benchmarked anything yet, the Samsung Q1 appears to respond a little snappier with the extra RAM. Keep in mind that the Intel graphics will use up to 128 MB of memory from your RAM module, so without the upgrade, there could be times where you’re running apps with a maximum of 384 MB of RAM; not an ideal amount of memory for running Windows XP Tablet Edition and a few apps concurrently. One other note; I booted into my Windows Vista partition after the upgrade. Previously, Vista was understandably sluggish on the Q1; with the extra memory, I see a marked difference in the response time of the new OS, so I may end up doing additional testing in that area. Watch for updates.

Since I had the case cracked open and some folks asked for additional pics the last time, here are some more, in no particular order for you sick-o’s.

-kct

Q1_usb
Q1_fan
Q1_boards

86 Comments

Danny

Thanks for the easy to follow how to. I didn’t want to tear up my new Q1. Your directions make it almost too easy.

Eugene Fullenwider

I have a Samsung Q1, I noticed that a person named Sears from this site has broken the screen & has torn apart his Q1, What I like to know is the Q1 CPU replacable? Is it possible to upgrade the CPU to the Pentium M 1.0GHZ chip(723) socket 479 to make it like its new counter part(Q1).

bit_bucket

Doug, you will need to reinstall the video drivers and you should be good to go…

dougthedaw

Made the upgrade and all works well except my external monitor will no longer connect…any ideas?

jamie potter

Help!!!! Ive cracked my screen on my Q1 and need advice as to wear to purchase a replacement…… Help!!!!

Paul J Shadwell

I have successfully upgraded my own Samsung Q1 to 1Gb using the following chip:
Corsair ValueSelect 1Gb SO-DIMM, DDR2-533
Fitting was simple and straight forward.
I’ve been monitoring the temp so far so good.

Only recently came across this site and I have been ploughing through the PodCasts. Great listening, keep up the good work.

Richard

Thanks Kevin for the pics and info. After seeing them I updated mine too. However… I was a little lazy and didn’t have a phillips head handy, so I used a flat head. I screwed up the grooves on the top of the screw, and couldn’t get it out at all. So, I found a phillips for the other ones. Since the one I screwed up was in the top corner, I could bend up the case every so gently, enough to get the old chip out and new one in OK without cracking the case. However for the rest of you out there… this memory upgrade is easy to do but harder if you are lazy :)

I haven’t run any benchmarks either, but it definitely is faster to respond…

Richard

Kevin C. Tofel

Kingston indicates that this memory module is compatible with the Q1. If it were me, I’d contact Kingston directly and see what they have to say, although it’s concerning that this worked before the BIOS upgrade. I’ve upgraded my BIOS and my 1GB is working fine. You might need Samsung support to get involved as well on this one.

James

I have the kingston 1G SODIMM M12864E40. All was fine before the BIOS update. First it hung the update process, and went into a blue screen reset loop. Then i change the old 512MB back and it booted fine. I grabbed the chance and complete the BIOS flash. Everything checked out fine, so I pop back the 1G ROM then its the blue screen again. Is the new BIOS preventing the ROM upgrade?

Frbl

Help – I want to do this upgrade but I am confused by all the different chips – which one(s) will work? I know I need a 1 GB DDR2-533 SODIMM, 200-pin – but I am especially confused by the different chips – even from the same company that match this spec.

A search at Kingston says to use their M12864E40 chip which matches the above spec but doesn’t give further details.

Another chip – which I can get much cheaper – is the Kingston KVR533D2S4/1G – it matches the above spec and lists more details – stuff I don’t know much about. Can I use this chip?

Here’s the fuller description of this chip: Standard 128M X 64 Non-ECC 533MHz 200-pin Unbuffered SODIMM (SDRAM-DDR2, 1.8V, CL4)

Thanks for any help!

Steve

I just went to Fry’s here in Las Vegas to pay $1100 for a Q1 but the assistant came out with a box labelled at $1299 – when I queried the price he realized that he had the new Pentium version. As I had already picked up a $100 DDR2 to upgrade it, I put the memory back on the shelf and I snapped up the new Q1 – Pentium based with 1GB pre-installed and a 60GB drive – I’m as happy as larry :)

My wife has the Sony Vaio UX180 which is nice but the screen is too small for my eyes.

I wonder if I can get a Sprint Aircard that fits in a CF slot?

Bill

OK, I finally joined the “people of the RAM”. I just came back from CompUSA where I paid too much for 1GB chip ($119) just because it was there. I had no trouble getting the cover off and pushing F8 during the AVS Now boot-up fixed that problem. Wow! what a difference! Can you say “zippy”? Thanks for the tips on how to make this upgrade!

Fred

Did the upgrade tonight. Worked flawlessly. Love the Q1 now that it can breathe easier. Thanks for the easy info on how to do it. For those that do it after me, listen to what is said above. When you take the back off it will make a sound that sounds like something small broke. Be carefull. Do it slowly. All will be great in the end. :)

Fred

Stu Gisburne

Sweeeeet! I was going to wait until after I went on vacation next week, but that darn 1GB memory chip was just spitting at me saying “I dare ya”. So, I disected my Q1 and upgraded the memory to 1GB. I figured I’d try the simple things first to get AVS to work before I did a system restore. Well, I have totally awesome news. After installing the new DIMM, I booted into AVS and pressed F8. The options were to boot normally or to delete AVS restoration data. Of course I told it to delete the restoration data and everything works! Screen rotation works as well. Thanks Dimitrios! Oh, and thanks to you Kevin for sharing your pioneer efforts (ie, taking one for the team)

Dimitrios L Scott

The Price is not worth it, from Dynamism,You can get the same rame on the internet for under $100.00 Check on Pricegrabber.com

AV Station now, I got it to work by Reinstalling AVS Now not The OS,and if the screen rotation stops woking reinstall the video card drivers.

Mesapilot

Can anyone comment on the increase in performance? Dynamism has the upgraded unit for $300 more. Is the price increase worth the performance boost?

Steve

I managed to get AVS working last night with a 1GB upgrade.
You’ll need a usb keyboard and whilst it tries to boot AVS just press F8 then select the option to delete settings or similar.

One problem I did have tho was I messed around in the Bios and enabled boot sector write protection. This meant I could no longer boot Windows it always ran AVS, no matter which way I pushed the powerswitch.

Steve.

Dimitrios L Scott

if you set the video ram to 128,in the bio’s it runs a lot better.does anyone know how to get av now to work after the ram upgrade. and does every thing work in windows vista?

LK

Matt- Just do in store pick up! That’s what I did. Before they even had them in store they had them in the back waiting to put them out.

Kevin C. Tofel

Actually, what I neglected to tell everyone is that I didn’t get the Q1 model; I got the Q.99 so it actually makes sense. :)

jk

Kevin, you got cheated out of .01 MB of RAM! I’d take it out and send it back.

Matt Smith

I’m planning on doing this upgrade when my Q1 arrives. Best Buy was to have shipped mine out today for delivery tomorrow (which I confirmed by phone this morning), but I just checked for a tracking number and it’s now showing backordered. Yet another Best Buy disappointment. The good news is that CDW has more than 100 units in stock, so I’ll hopefully still have my Q1 by Monday.

LK

I am so tempted to do this, as I have notice a bit of sluggishness. BUT, I purchased the additional warranty from Best Buy as well, and after paying $249 for that, I’d hate to void it. Do you think that warranty would be voided as well or just the Samsung one?

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