Revived ASUS AIO ET2220INTI-I5 – Flickering Screens (Overheating)
Back in June 2013, I did an un-boxing review on the ASUS AIO ET2220. 4 years have since passed, and now it is starting to give a little problem – flickering greenish screens! Based on my test so far, the greenish screen only appeared after some time of usage (like 30 mins or so). And then the screen will then start to flicker until the screen finally turns itself off while the system is still running. And if you were to shut it down and power it up after 15 minutes, the system will be fine again. I then began performing some diagnostics using HWMonitor and found out that the temperature of the onboard graphics Nvidia GT610 had hit a high of 75°C. This is definitely not the norm as it should idle around 50°C and increase to approximately 65°C during load.
So what is the problem? It is likely to be associated either to the cooling system (i.e: heatsink and fan) or the thermal paste losing its effect. I decided to open up the chassis to take a look.
First, you have to remove the 5 rubber seals at the edges, and then remove the screws beneath it. And then remove the plastic cover for the stand and loosen the 4 screws.
The next step is to remove the back cover that are secured by the plastic clips. Please do this with care or you might risk breaking the clips as they are very soft. After releasing the back cover from the plastic clips, DO NOT pull the cover out as it it connected to the side ports via a ribbon.
After opening up the back cover, you will see that all the components are very well protected and only the cooling fan is exposed. You can then begin to remove the screens securing the metal covers to expose the hardware components.
If you are familiar with computer components, you should be able to identify the HDD, so-dimm rams, the heatsink connecting to the CPU and GFX card. Since SSD is pretty economical and boost much better performances, I decided to also replace the WD Blue 1 TB HDD to a Crucial M550 256GB SSD that I bought 2 years back. It is now replaced with the Cruical MX300 SSD. If you wish, you can also upgrade the memory. The default that comes along are 2x 2GB DDR3 PC12800 1600Mhz. I would recommend putting in 2x 4GB DDR3 to boost the performance.
Next, remove the heatsink that is connected directly to the cooling fan. Clean off the existing thermal paste before applying the new thermal compound. I decided to use Artic MX-4. Artic thermal compound has been in the market for many years. It spreads well and is long lasting. Since I am replacing the thermal paste for the GFX, I decided to do the same for the CPU as well to save me the hassle to replace it in the future.
Place back the heatsink carefully and tighten the screws back. You are done! So far, I do not see the flickering screens coming back after using for a few hours. The temperature of the GFX now hovers less than 60°C.