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ASUS K50IJ Notebook Upgrade Project

How I upgraded my ASUS K50IJ Notebook and for less than $150!

The ASUS K50IJ Notebook comes with 3 GB of RAM, a 160 GB hard drive, an Intel Core 2 DUO 2.1 GHz processor, and an Intel Video chipset. This computer model is a little over 2 years old and I have owned it for that long.

This notebook is now out of production by ASUS, I enquired at ASUS Support about spares for this computer, they are available for one more year for the extended warrantee computers only (large companies by in bulk, when they do they get a longer warrantee at a cheaper price) and from what ASUS Support has told me and my experience is that any spares the manufacture has will either go up for auction for bidders in bulk or they will sell them to a third party.

ASUS will sell you their stock as long as the extended warrantee computers are covered. When I asked for a memory up grade the only memory they have in stock for sale is the 1 GB memory module which I already have. Also they do not recommended upgrading the processor to a Quad. 


The battery life will not be as long as with the Duo processor. (That is ok, I have a spare ASUS K50IJ Notebook extended power battery for the laptop).

Note: That battery died a sudden death, one day it worked, was at about 50% when it quit, even my technique for restoring a dead Li-Ion battery didn't work. May do a review on the battery and the company because it cost a lot of money...

The hard drive is full so I ordered a Seagate 7200 RPM  320 GB SATA III Hard Drive, I am going for a faster hard drive for this laptop because the 160 GB that is in it is a 5400 RPM drive and sometimes it struggles when I play games when we travel.

The ASUS K50IJ Notebook only has one expansion slot for memory, currently it has a 1 GB memory module, I ordered a 4 GB PATRIOT memory module to upgrade the memory.

Although I will be using XP primarily and Windows 7 32 bit when I need it for a newer game the extra 2.7 GB of RAM can be used for the video because this is a system that the Video and System share the RAM when needed. (I might make 1 GB in to a RAM Drive for temp files)

(One game I play on it causes the computer to drag when the scene changes, when I get the upgrade done I will know if my theory works.)

This is a little map I made to help me decide on how to split up the hard drive for the operating systems and the storage for the computer. 50 GB for XP (it could be smaller but a couple of games I have install only on the System drive), 50 for Windows7, and 220 GB for files and of course Games!

The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....

320 GB hard drive for ASUS laptop, partition size map.

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As I told Kermit the other day if my eye sight gets back to normal I might (strongly say might) desolder the 2 GB base RAM on the motherboard and replace it with the RAM off a DDR 2 memory module, at $75 or so each module that would be a cheap upgrade (if I don't toast the motherboard) then the computer could have 8 GB of RAM.

If you look at the image of the ASUS K50IJ Notebook memory module in the slot just under the expansion slot is the base 2 GB of RAM, that will take some time and work to remove then solder the new RAM in. I will have to think about doing the upgrade, if the new 6 GB of RAM is sufficient I may forgo that upgrade.

In the near future I plan on putting a Intel Core 2 Quad processor in the laptop. I have been researching the possibility of a Quad at 2.4 GHz, they are available but they are not cheap.

Some images from my ASUS K50IJ Notebook upgrade experiment:

The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....
ASUS K50IJ Notebook, 320 GB hard drive, and 4 GB DDR2 memory module.    Bottom panel of the ASUS K50IJ Notebook, preparing for the upgrades.
The upgrade is for the hard drive and the memory pictured here.   This is one of the easiest cases I have opened in a long time, there is a panel on the bottom that is secured with five screws, then it slides off.
The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....


4 GB DDR 2 Memory module before installatioin.   The 4 GB memory module in the slot, do not use a lot of force to insert the module in th slot.
4 GB DDR 2 800 MHz Memory module   When inserting the memory module in the expansion slot use minimum force, if you bend a pin or break the slot the motherboard has to be replaced!


The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....
Image of the BIOS showing the 6.1 GB or RAM installed in the computer.   320 GB Seagate 7200 RPM hard drive that will be installed.
Upgrade complete 6.1GB of RAM   Next is the hard drive


The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....
The hard drive is in a mounting case, the black tab alows you to silde the hard drive about half an inch to disconnect the drive from the SATA interface.   The drive disconnected from the SATA interface, not much room between them but enough to lift the drive out of the bay.
Pulling gently on the black tab will slide the hard drive out of the SATA interface.   Once the drive is disconnected you can lift it out of the bay.


The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....
Top drive is the old 160 GB drive the bottom is the new 320 GB drive.   Insure the hard drive is fully seated in the connector.
The new 320 GB drive is thinner than the older 160 GB drive.   The new drive in the laptop and seated.


The image, table, or PDF was removed because it will not display on your device. Check back on a PC....
Next to see if it is initalized...   This is what you want to see, next make the partition, set it as Acitive, then instal the OS...
Picture of the BIOS settings for the mass media.   Picture of the new hard drive in the BIOS, upgrade complete.

When I do an upgrade I do a power on check after each step. I did the memory first, then the power on check.

Then I replaced the hard drive and did a power on check.

Once I was satisfied with the results I completed my restore of my data.

One thing that has bothered me about this new drive is the 50 GB partition for Windows 7 was corrupt after the Ghost image was put on the partition. I will troubleshoot that once all the data is restored.

ASUS K50IJ Notebook upgrade, 320 GB 7200 RPM Seagate drive and 4 GB Patriot DDR 2 800 MHz memory module, all done. About half an hour to do that plus the time to restore the data.

03/10/15 - I have since upgraded the laptop with a 480 GB OCZ Vertex 460 SSD, once the drive was installed I created the three partitions with my Custom ERD and restored the data with in one hour. The laptop starts a little faster. More room for games and the battery will last longer.

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ASUS K50IJ Notebook upgrade, pretty easy, saved about 3 hours repair shop time, close to $250...

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