Laptop woes: Insufficient PSU or MB?
I've had various issues with my laptop when it comes to demanding 3D applications (ie games) over the past two years. Namely, I seem to be registering poor performance in relation to the components in my system. I originally looked into heat issues, as any laptop with a P4 tends to get hot. However, I now use a reliable aluminum cooling pad, and heat does not seem to be the primary cause of my woes.
Recently, a friend suggested that poor framerates, unusual crashes, and random choppiness could be the result of a poor PSU. Upon consideration, it would seem that the standard, cheap laptop PSU would not suffice for such a power-consuming machine. However, I have been unable to confirm these suspicions.
Regardless, I have taken countless steps to try and resolve my issues, but to no avail. I will list the ones I can remember below:
-Compaq tech support
-Upgrading RAM (from 1 GB to 1.5 GB)
-Upgrading HDD (to 7200 RPM unit)
-Updating drivers and experimenting with various 3rd party drivers (current video drivers: Omega based off of the 6.5 Catalyst)
-Changing pagefile size and function
-Tweaking registry for various optimizations
-Running Windows with visual styles disabled
-Spyware, worm, virus, and trojan checks
-External LCD monitor (the notebook is widescreen, so I have tried non-WS display options)
-Cleaning the fans frequently for dust buildup
-OCing the video card (both RAM and GPU; the card can only be pumped up a few MHz before artifacting appears, and underclocking does not help either)
That's the big list, for now. The reason why I suspect faulty (or insufficient) hardware is based on the fact that I've tried all the possible fixes that I have ever come across. Any suggestions, ideas, or insights would be appreciated!
3.2 GHz P4 (w/ HT)
1.5 GB DDR 2700 RAM
ATi Mobility Radeon 9600 w/ 128 MB VRAM
80 GB Hitachi HDD @ 7200 RPM
Creative Audigy 2 ZS Notebook PCMCIA card
Windows XP Professional SP2