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I have a question that is really driving me crazy!

I have a dell xps M1210 laptop. The other day I opened it to apply thermal paste. There are 2 chips connected to the heatsink, one raised, and one lower.

At first I assumed the raised one to be the cpu, and the lower one to be the gpu, but then I realized that i had integrated graphics, which means that the graphics card is part of the cpu?

So my question is, what are those 2 chips? Thanks!

This is my mobo, from left to right: the raised chip (installed on mine, but not in the picture), the lower chip, discrete graphics that i don't have on my mobo.

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Does the chip has any name? Any letters or numbers on it? –  Ruslan Gerasimov Jul 29 at 9:20

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Integrated graphics means the GPU is built into the motherboard, not CPU.

Your first instinct was probably correct, the second chip you see is the GPU

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Correct; there aren't that many chips which require a heatsink. CPU and GPU are 2 common chips which do. –  MSalters Jul 29 at 9:25

It's the northbridge (sometimes called the GMCH). Your CPU is an old one with an FSB and no on-die video. The memory controller, PCIe controller, and GPU aren't on the CPU die but instead in a separate chip.

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According to this review, the XPS M1210 (released in 2006) used the Core Duo processor, so it did use a FSB and the GPU (either Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950 or NVIDIA GeForce Go 7400 TurboCache) would be integrated with the memory controller et al. as you stated. –  Paul A. Clayton Jul 29 at 14:54
    
Yah, it's a Intel "Calistoga" northbridge. In the original poster's picture, the empty yellow coloured socket is for the CPU, the northbridge (combined memory controller and GPU) is to right of the socket, and the Nvidia graphics chip is to right of the northbridge. The populated socket bellow the CPU socket and the northbridge is an SO-DIMM socket, you can just make where it says "DIMM" on the installed SO-DIMM. The ICH7-M southbridge is on the back of the motherboard. –  Ross Ridge Aug 2 at 16:03

notebookreview.com says:

The Dell XPS M1210 is a new 12.1-inch screen portable laptop that features the Intel Core Duo processor, rotating 1.3MP web camera, built-in EVDO and an nVidia Go 7400 graphics card.

So this chip is probably the nVidia graphics card.

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hmm, but I am sure that I don't have an nvidia card, only an intel one. The empty socket on my board that is filled in the picture is the nvidia card. –  blaine Jul 29 at 9:09

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