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[Guide] Dell XPS 13 9360 on MacOS Sierra 10.12.x - LTS (Long-Term Support) Guide

Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
384
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
you were getting 5500/17500 in clover in MacOS? wow I only have seen those scores in linux. I will gladly share my OC folder as soon as I get back home. reminder, I'm using dell Inspiron and not XPS9360. also my power limit is set to 44w. not sure how you achieved 28w, but that could possibly be an issue. don't quote me on that since I really don't know.

@jkbuha could you tell me how to remove the acidanthera from motherboard and bios please?

Not sure I understand the acidanthera bit. Could you explain exactly what you want to achieve here?

With regards to TDP, I strongly suspect the Inspiron has better cooling techniques than the 9360.

This is a bit offtopic, but the best performance scores on the 9360 (7th and 8th gen) are obtained with the following:

1) Removing the heatsink, cleaning the thermal gunk that's gathered on the CPU/GPU, and replacing it with arctic thermal pads with 1.5mm thickness. The net effect is that the bottom lid becomes a heatsink, but the CPU cooling is phenomenal.

2) Undervolting CPU/GPU/Cache/SystemIO etc using setup_var and/or voltageshift. This is highly processor specific, though you should at least get -50mV (~4-6C) across all chips. The 8th gen can be better undervolted, I'm on -150mV at the moment.

3) Raising the TDP threshold, using setup_var. There are a few combinations that need to be applied, such as unlocking CFG, unlocking TDP_lock, and a few other tricks. They're explained reasonably well elsewhere, but if there's any interest on this forum I could put a rough guide together. However I've found that a stable balance is 28W, as with 44W there's too much up/down clocking leading to a drop in performance. It's worth exploring this again though, and I'll do that once I have an updated OpenCore baseline on which to run tests.

4) Unlocking the 4x PCIe lanes for faster memory and SDD/NVMe throughput. I've explained how to do this a couple pages back, it's a bit risky as you need to use a programmer (and the BIOS chip on this laptop is incredibly difficult to attach to) but there's a significant boost. However, there is a slight hike in temperature, which in reality might also lead to the TDP limits explained in 3).

With regards to overclocking, I recall that the U-series chipsets have their max multiplier locked, so I don't think it's possible to unlock. But if anyone has any additional info on this please get in touch.
 
Joined
Dec 20, 2018
Messages
439
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Gaming 7
CPU
i7-8700K OC 5GHz
Graphics
GTX 1080 Ti & UHD 630
Mac
  1. iMac
  2. MacBook Pro
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
Not sure I understand the acidanthera bit. Could you explain exactly what you want to achieve here?

With regards to TDP, I strongly suspect the Inspiron has better cooling techniques than the 9360.

This is a bit offtopic, but the best performance scores on the 9360 (7th and 8th gen) are obtained with the following:

1) Removing the heatsink, cleaning the thermal gunk that's gathered on the CPU/GPU, and replacing it with arctic thermal pads with 1.5mm thickness. The net effect is that the bottom lid becomes a heatsink, but the CPU cooling is phenomenal.

2) Undervolting CPU/GPU/Cache/SystemIO etc using setup_var and/or voltageshift. This is highly processor specific, though you should at least get -50mV (~4-6C) across all chips. The 8th gen can be better undervolted, I'm on -150mV at the moment.

3) Raising the TDP threshold, using setup_var. There are a few combinations that need to be applied, such as unlocking CFG, unlocking TDP_lock, and a few other tricks. They're explained reasonably well elsewhere, but if there's any interest on this forum I could put a rough guide together. However I've found that a stable balance is 28W, as with 44W there'swever I think you maybetoo much up/down clocking leading to a drop in performance. It's worth exploring this again though, and I'll do that once I have an updated OpenCore baseline on which to run tests.

4) Unlocking the 4x PCIe lanes for faster memory and SDD/NVMe throughput. I've explained how to do this a couple pages back, it's a bit risky as you need to use a programmer (and the BIOS chip on this laptop is incredibly difficult to attach to) but there's a significant boost. However, there is a slight hike in temperature, which in reality might also lead to the TDP limits explained in 3).

With regards to overclocking, I recall that the U-series chipsets have their max multiplier locked, so I don't think it's possible to unlock. But if anyone has any additional info on this please get in touch.
when I look at your scores on Geekbench your motherboard says Dell Inc. mine says acidanthera.
with regards to heatsink, I didn't change anything, fully stock. however I think you maybe right regarding different cooling on the 2 laptops. xps seems to be closed in like a MacBook. I didn't see many vents. I'm also using MacBook Pro 15,1 smbios. hope this helps @jkbuha could you help me get the HDMI port working? had it working in clover now can't seem to get it in Catalina and open core
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2020-10-21 at 2.10.34 AM copy.png
    Screen Shot 2020-10-21 at 2.10.34 AM copy.png
    277.5 KB · Views: 13
  • OC.zip
    61.9 MB · Views: 46
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
384
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
when I look at your scores on Geekbench your motherboard says Dell Inc. mine says acidanthera.
with regards to heatsink, I didn't change anything, fully stock. however I think you maybe right regarding different cooling on the 2 laptops. xps seems to be closed in like a MacBook. I didn't see many vents. I'm also using MacBook Pro 15,1 smbios. hope this helps @jkbuha could you help me get the HDMI port working? had it working in clover now can't seem to get it in Catalina and open core

Ah, now I see why your scores are higher. Your Inspiron has 32GB 2400MHz DDR4 RAM, the 9360 only has 8/16GB 1800/2133MHz LPDDR3 RAM. I still have to bring up the speed in OC to that of Clover, and there a few quirks/SSDTs that still need to be tweaked. Will revert shortly.

As to the motherboard name, that is usually set from two places: config.plist and SMBIOS. The 9360 is specific as there's a bug in the BIOS, but when I publish my latest OC.zip you can take all the settings I use and plug it into your own OC folder.

The HDMI port is set using framebuffer injection. It's set under Device properties. You also probably have an SSDT that is missing and/or misconfigured in the config.plist.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2014
Messages
18
Motherboard
ups 9360
CPU
i3-330m
Graphics
HD 5650
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Portable
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
@jkbuha

quite interesting in how to raising the TDP threshold.
i've do some google search ,but not found the answer yet.
would you mind give some hint? or a tutorial will be better.
thanks in advance.

here is my geekbench4 score compare to yours .

- bigsur beta10

- cpufriend provider , performance mode

- Overclock, CFG, WDT & XTU enable

- 0x4DE -> 00
- 0x64D -> 01
- 0x64E -> 01

- TDP Boot Mode to performance
- 0x4DF -> 0x02

- 2mm thermal pads between heatsink & button lid

- cpu undervolt about -100mv

- a circulator fan to cooling


1603426428574.png

1603426054628.png
 
Last edited:
Joined
Dec 20, 2018
Messages
439
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Gaming 7
CPU
i7-8700K OC 5GHz
Graphics
GTX 1080 Ti & UHD 630
Mac
  1. iMac
  2. MacBook Pro
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
quite interesting in how to raising the TDP threshold.
i've do some google search ,but not found the answer yet.
would you mind give some hint? or a tutorial will be better.
thanks in advance.

here is my geekbench4 score compare to yours .

- bigsur beta10

- cpufriend provider , performance mode

- Overclock, CFG, WDT & XTU enable

- 0x4DE -> 00
- 0x64D -> 01
- 0x64E -> 01

- TDP Boot Mode to performance
- 0x4DF -> 0x02

- 2mm thermal pads between heatsink & button lid

- cpu undervolt about -100mv

- a circulator fan to cooling


View attachment 492862
View attachment 492861
can you share how you made HDMI work?
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2014
Messages
18
Motherboard
ups 9360
CPU
i3-330m
Graphics
HD 5650
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Portable
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
can you share how you made HDMI work?

hdmi?
sorry,there isn't any hdmi port on my xps 9360.

if you are using xps 9360, you could try those EFI below.
it's using DisplayPort Alt Mode to transfer video signal by usb type-c port.

 
Joined
Jan 2, 2014
Messages
18
Motherboard
ups 9360
CPU
i3-330m
Graphics
HD 5650
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Portable
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
1603446524488.png

sometimes when watching youtube video under 4k monitor.
gpu ate all the power out.
hence cpu is lack of the power.
only 1Ghz or even less
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
384
Motherboard
XPS 13 9360
CPU
i7-8550U
Graphics
UHD 620
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
@jkbuha

quite interesting in how to raising the TDP threshold.
i've do some google search ,but not found the answer yet.
would you mind give some hint? or a tutorial will be better.
thanks in advance.

here is my geekbench4 score compare to yours .

- bigsur beta10

- cpufriend provider , performance mode

- Overclock, CFG, WDT & XTU enable

- 0x4DE -> 00
- 0x64D -> 01
- 0x64E -> 01

- TDP Boot Mode to performance
- 0x4DF -> 0x02

- 2mm thermal pads between heatsink & button lid

- cpu undervolt about -100mv

- a circulator fan to cooling


View attachment 492862
View attachment 492861

Awesome setup. Thanks for posting.

I'm assuming you have an XPS 9360? If so could you please share your OC.zip here, I should be able to increase your single core scores.

With regards to TDP_limit I'm working on a full set of variables to change with setup_var. One of them is the TDP boot mode as you correctly identified.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2014
Messages
18
Motherboard
ups 9360
CPU
i3-330m
Graphics
HD 5650
Mac
  1. MacBook Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Portable
Mobile Phone
  1. iOS
Awesome setup. Thanks for posting.

I'm assuming you have an XPS 9360? If so could you please share your OC.zip here, I should be able to increase your single core scores.

With regards to TDP_limit I'm working on a full set of variables to change with setup_var. One of them is the TDP boot mode as you correctly identified.

My OC zip mainly come from this repo

Compare other EFI, it won't wake up every 2 hour automatically.
it's perfect.

And i've modify some part.
- with BCM94360cs2 replaced ,wireless&bluetooth related kext is deleted, but i need wake on lan(homeassistant automation), so i add -brcmfxwowl to boot-args
- CPUfriend provider is needed, or the performance will be very poor
- SecureBootModel to disable
- other stuff ...

looking forward your work on full set of variables to change with setup_var.
 

Attachments

  • EFI-xps9360-oc062.zip
    14.7 MB · Views: 15
Last edited:
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