Real notebook reviews and analysis by real people

How to Fix Throttling on the Dell XPS 15 9570 / 9560

By Douglas Black , last updated on September 12, 2019

Note: title has been changed to reflect that the XPS 9570 has the same problems and the same solutions as the XPS 9560. I’ll update the contents if needed when I get a 9570 to test (already did, here’s the review), but for now these tweaks will work on both builds.

So, you’ve already maxed out your Dell XPS 15 with 32GB of DDR4 RAM and the best 1TB NVMe SSD for the money—now your XPS 15 is as good as it gets, right? Nope, not yet!

Without some hardware and software tweaks, your brand-new XPS 15 won’t be able to perform anywhere near its potential due to throttling.

In this article we’ll tell you how address this issue, but be aware that while this procedure works and is safe when done correctly, it may void your warranty or damage your computer if you don’t know what you’re doing. We’re just providing a guide and cannot be hold accountable for your actions, so proceed at your own risk.

Before you begin the journey of optimizing your XPS 15, you’ll want the following: 1.5mm 6.0W/mK thermal pads, Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut (best thermal paste at the moment without resorting to the liquid metal variants), some highly pure rubbing alcohol and some microfiber cloths.

As mentioned in our detailed review, the XPS 15 9560 with the Core i7-7700HQ processor (as well as the 9570 with the i7-8750H update) is prone to two types of throttling:

  1. Thermal throttling of the CPU or GPU (generally the CPU) when temperatures get too high
  2. Voltage Regulator Module (VRM) throttling caused by it getting too hot and being unable to deliver enough power

The first type of throttling is quite straightforward to all but the most uninitiated: the CPU and GPU have temperature limits to prevent damage. Exceeding the temperature max (100C for CPU, 97C for GPU) will cause an instantaneous shutdown—but you should never see temperatures anywhere near that as the components will throttle their performance long before they get to that point.

There are softer limits than 100C and 97C for the CPU and GPU respectively, however. The GPU will reduce its clocks to keep its temperature below 78C, and the CPU will dynamically reduce its turbo-clocks based on temperatures and power consumption.

The second type of throttling is also the result of heat, but because people generally look at CPU and GPU temperatures alone when benchmarking, it went undetected for a long time.

The VRM’s job is to convert 5 or 12V power from the adapter or battery into much smaller voltages to feed the CPU and GPU (generally 1.5v or less). A VRM has several components, but we are primarily interested in only two: MOSFETS (short for metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor, but you don’t need to know that for any reason except trivia) and chokes. The MOSFET is responsible for switching the voltage down to a manageable level to feed the CPU and GPU; the chokes stabilize the current.

In this image (courtesy of iunlock of Notebookreview), the MOSFETs and chokes have been identified with their temperatures under load. Throttling occurs around 78C.

To get your XPS 15 to run at its maximum potential, we will need to solve both these problems. First, let’s take care of the CPU and GPU heat directly. For this, you’ll need your Grizzly Kryonaut, 99% rubbing alcohol, and those microfiber cloths.

  1. Use a T5 screwdriver to remove the 10 Torx screws around the edges of the bottom panel.
  2. Open the service hatch and use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the two Phillips-head screws.
  3. If this is your first time opening your XPS 15, it will take a bit of effort to take the bottom plate off, as there are many small clips that keep it attached. Get your fingernails or a plastic card under the sides of the base near the hinge where the casing is most robust, and apply even, steady pressure to pull the bottom off.
  4. Remove the battery connector by pulling gently.
  5. Use your Phillips screwdriver to remove the five screws of the heat sink assembly (a thank you to Jens Andersson for the picture with proper screws highlighted as I no longer have this machine). 
  6. DO NOT PULL ON THE PIPES TO REMOVE IT. The heat sink assembly bends very easily. Carefully remove the heat sink assembly by getting your fingers under the upper edges of the left square (this is the GPU’s heat spreader) and gentle pulling upward on the top edge. The assembly should come up fairly easily once you overcome the glue-like suction of Dell’s abominable paste-job.
  7. Use the microfiber with the rubbing alcohol to remove the existing thermal paste. You’ll want to clean both the CPU and GPU dies as well as the heat spreader. Keep cleaning with the alcohol until you don’t see any grey marks on the cloth after rubbing.
  8. Put a little (half the size of a grain of rice) dollop of the thermal paste onto each die. Don’t worry, it will be pressed flat by the pressure of the heat spreader.
  9. Carefully replace the heat sink assembly flat onto the dies. Keep applying firm downward pressure over the heat spreader areas with one hand while you reinsert the screws with the other.
  10. Tighten each screw only a little at a time, taking turns tightening the screw diagonal to it so the pressure on the heatsink is uniform.
  11. Reconnect the battery.
  12. Place the bottom case cover back on the unit. No need to screw it back on yet, though.
  13. Turn on your laptop and run some tests! If you’ve done it right, you’ll see a pretty good reduction in CPU and GPU operating temperatures.

The next step is using software called ThrottleStop to reduce the power consumption of your CPU. This can reduce the load wattage needed for the CPU by 10W easily.

Generally, all the i7-7700HQs on XPS 15 9560’s I’ve seen can undervolt to -125mv for core and cache. I run -125mv on core/care and -75mv on the iGPU. i7-8750H CPUs on the XPS 15 9570 do well at around -120 mV, but I’ve seen some that were onyl stable at around -11- mV to -110 mV. The link above explains how to use ThrottleStop and how to test for stability.

The final tweak to take care of your CPU and GPU temperatures is to go to the Nvidia Control Panel and change the “Maximum pre-rendered frames” value to “2”. This will prevent the CPU from needlessly being overtaxed to send data to the GPU.

The next step is dealing with the temperatures of the VRM head-on. Take another look at this picture:

Our goal is to cool those MOSFETs with the highest temperature (above the heat spreader) so they don’t hit their throttling temperature. How? We will be using stacked thermal pads to connect the MOSFET to the aluminum bottom cover. Why? When the right type of pads are used, the bottom cover will wick heat away from the MOSFETs.

There is trick to this, and it explains why we use lower performing 6W/mK thermal pads instead of some very high quality ones: if too much heat is transferred to the case it will actually end up heating up the VRM instead of cooling it. This is what will happen if you use an extremely conductive (16W/mK) thermal pad, and it’s why we want the 6W/mK pads for this purpose instead.

The mod is fairly straightforward: cut out small vertical strips from the thermal pad and place them on top of the MOSFETs above the heat spreaders. If you are using 1.5mm thick thermal pads, you will need to stack 3 of them on top of each other in order to reach the case. You want to leave as much open space around the pads so what little airflow there is doesn’t get impeded.

That’s it! Once you have stacked your little padded pillars over the MOSFETs and put the case bottom back on, you should be able to run any game or benchmark without VRM-induced throttling.

After following this guide, your Dell XPS 15 9560/9750 should now be a finely tuned beast of a machine, able to leap mountains in a single bound. If this guide helped you, please let me know in the comments and share this guide.

Disclaimer: Our content is reader-supported. If you buy through some of the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.
Based in Washington, D.C., Douglas Black is a veteran technology journalist, university lecturer, DJ, and consultant.


  1. Tom

    November 27, 2019 at 7:14 pm


    this article is a good head start, but not sufficient. After applying it, I got from like 100°C on VRM to ~ 90°C which wasn't enough to stop throttling. I made some changes and now I got to maximums 76°C VRM, 75°C GPU which clocks at 1600 MHz and around 78°C CPU. What I did extra? Cutted a hole for airflow, padded space between lid and alu cooling pad, custom repadded memory on GPU, downvolted and little underclocked GPU and a little underclocked CPU. Yes and in 3 layers of VRM padding written here, I used 1x 3mm mini coller + 1 pad = same 4.5 mm total height, that helped a couple of deg. Now I don't have any throttling (CPU or GPU) while I play anything for serveral hours (well, with Chrome and my usual apps opened, CPU can throttle a little bit – could downclock GPU even more…)

    Would anyone be interested to read such article? I have had it in my head for months. Thanks.

    • Tom

      November 27, 2019 at 7:20 pm

      Oh and here's one super easy hack for older games to stop throttling:

      1. Open Dell Command Power Manager
      2. Click Thermal Management tab
      3. Set profile to Cool
      4. Play a game

      I will downclock GPU and CPU and spin the hell out of fans. Games will have lower FPS at first, but less generated heat will cause lower VRM temps so no more downlocking CPU to 780 MHz. Good for less demanding games.

    • Paul

      November 30, 2019 at 6:28 pm

      I'd definitely be interested in reading such an article, if you wrote it.

    • Chris

      December 3, 2019 at 2:26 am

      Yes, I would very much like to read the article.

    • Hyti

      April 11, 2020 at 12:12 pm

      Would love to know more about what you did as my xps is still throttling after following this articles steps..

    • Mathew

      July 15, 2020 at 9:03 am

      Bruh, this mod is the truth.

      I did as described and my temps are down to max 80 degrees celsius (in california summer weather with no AC).
      My temps were like 97 in benchmarks before and the CPU was throttling 33%.
      After the changes, maxing out at 80% and ZERO throttling after the first second or so when the fans kick in, benchmarks running 10+ minutes.

      CSGO perfomance is up SINGIFICANTLY to 200+ FPS and not bottling down during action.

      I additionally undervolted the CPU to -135mV and undervolted the GFX card with the MSI afterburner, and this thing is like a whole new machine.

      Thanks for the heads up!

  2. Pablo

    January 14, 2020 at 9:42 am

    I would not want to red such an article. Rather I would be unable to do so, because I am illiterate, and I don't have time. I donut have a kump yooter anyway, and it runs very slow. The only way I can undervolt is to hold a battery over my head. I've been overclocked since I was born, I'm always late, there is NEVER enough time.

    • Douglas Black

      January 14, 2020 at 10:02 am

      Dear Pablo,

      I am slightly concerned for your well-being, but I wish you all the best.


      • rofl

        February 19, 2020 at 11:34 pm


        • OmegaLoL

          June 22, 2020 at 8:32 am


      • Eridan Dan

        September 10, 2020 at 12:47 am

        Oh, a typo, it should read "I wish you all the BOOST" XD

  3. Burt Leicester

    January 28, 2020 at 7:06 pm

    What about the 7590 with i9-9980HK?
    It only costs a tiny bit more than the hexacore i7. So rather than waste all that time doing everything described in this article, why not recommend the i9 instead?

    • Douglas Black

      January 28, 2020 at 7:12 pm

      Hi Burt,

      I am not sure I follow your logic. This article's objective is to reduce throttling and help owners of XPS machines get a higher percentage of the performance their machines ought to be capable of. The i9-9980HK will throttle even more, and so these procedures would likely be more critical to do. Of course the 7590 is better at handling thermals than the 9570, so that's a reason to get the 7590 rather than the older models for sure.

  4. Malith

    February 1, 2020 at 8:21 pm

    I did follow your instructions last year. I monitored the performance of my Dell XPS 9560 through out the year.
    Before the tweaks I was getting thermal throttling. Repasting & Thermal pads got rid of that trouble.

    When I export a batch of images from RAW to TIFF or JPEG, my laptop goes to Power Limit throttling.
    I didnt even open the laptop after doing the fix you suggested.
    Any idea why this is happening?
    I was using throttlestop to undervolt my CPU. Even without under volting it shows PL throttling.

    Thanks in advance
    I used

    • Douglas Black

      February 1, 2020 at 8:26 pm

      That's a good question.

      Any changes in BIOS version since then? Is your laptop plugged in to the original OEM charger (130W)? Are you running it off battery or USB-C? Have you tried opening it up and cleaning it from any dust? If you're using the original charger, it sounds like there's some debris inside causing it to trap too much heat.

      • Malith

        February 1, 2020 at 9:56 pm

        Thanks for the quick reply.
        BIOS got updated through SupportAssist few times.
        All original charger. Nothing replaced.
        Never used USB C charging on my laptop.
        I tried while using battery / battery, but no change.
        Will have a look inside.

        Any other suggestions?


        • Douglas Black

          February 1, 2020 at 9:58 pm

          My #1 guess is that you've got a lot of dirt inside that needs to be cleaned out from the vans and other parts of the heatsink assembly

        • Malith

          February 1, 2020 at 10:02 pm

          Thanks. Will check & update you soon

  5. bob

    February 12, 2020 at 2:32 pm

    Always fun to buy a super fast laptop and pick the best processor and having to underclock it becasue they fucked up the cooling :(

    • Adrian Dixon

      February 12, 2020 at 7:43 pm

      IKR, I love my 9560 but haven’t done anyone of these yet and I definitely don’t have the funds to buy the new one now. I’ll be doing this sometime soon

      • Dmitry

        July 26, 2020 at 9:40 pm


        Could you clarify this:

        > we use lower performing 6W/mK thermal pads instead of some very high quality ones: if too much heat is transferred to the case it will actually end up heating up the VRM instead of cooling it. This is what will happen if you use an extremely conductive (16W/mK) thermal pad, and it’s why we want the 6W/mK pads for this purpose instead

        How is this possible? Unless the other end of the pad is connected to a _hotter_ surface, it should cool the parts down, not heat them up. Irrespective of its conductivity (which should only affect the speed).

        • Dmitry

          July 26, 2020 at 9:41 pm

          Sorry, wrong thread.

          Meant to do a top-level comment.

  6. Maximilian

    February 28, 2020 at 6:11 pm

    I can confirm this works also with the Dell XPS 15 9550.
    I have the 512 SSD, gtx 960m, i7-6700, 4K Screen version of this Laptop, and also got thermal throttling.

    I got thermal throttling while playing games like rainbow 6 or overwatch.
    After adding the thermal pads, the temperature went down by 2 C. But not enough to keep the GPU cool for the games.
    So I cleaned the fans (don’t know why I tried that first) and this gave me 10C less. now I could play Overwatch at around 80-85C, but Rainbow 6 I was still peaking at 91 C and thermal throttling kicked in.
    After repasting the GPU CPU and cleaning the heat spreader, I was was down to 60C at Overwatch and 70-75 at Rainbow 6.

    All the temperatures are GPU temps. My CPU temps dropped from 85C to 61C while playing.
    I tried also undervolting with Throttlestop but after doing all the Hardware-Stuff I am fine with my temps, so i didn’t undervolt my CPU and Intel GPU anymore.
    My Temperature Settings in the Dell Power Manager are set to cooling at the moment, but I guess I can set them to optimized with these low temps.

    Hope I could help some people who also own a 9550, and thanks for the guide.

  7. Rigo Cisneros

    March 23, 2020 at 10:59 pm

    I'm having the reverse problem. The laptop can't detect the power supply so it drops the cpu speed down to 900mhz to keep it from burning the power supply. It's a brand new 250w supply. Any suggestions?

    • Douglas Black

      March 23, 2020 at 11:01 pm

      Are you able to test it with another power supply? You could try disabling "power supply warning" in BIOS, but I think that only gets rid of the warning.

  8. Viktor

    March 25, 2020 at 2:34 pm

    Hello Douglas, I had thermal issues with my Precision 5530 at work and your guide inspired me to do a repasting on this one. It has a similar case design.

    der8auer told me to use Hydronaut instead of Kryonaut for repasting, this one has lower performance but is better in respect of the pump out effect for long term use and might be better for notebook usage.

    So this actually made a huge difference. CPU throtteling is now only occuring when doing some high performance thingys. The maximum power usage peak of the CPU is now about 80 Watts, it is possible to work constantly with with about 65 Watts without throtteling happening. Before repasting, thermal throtteling happened at an average of 45 Watts while working.

    Do you know if there a way to check if thermal throtteling still occurs by high mosfet temperatures? The mainboard design of the 5530 is different to the xps 15 here and I have not yet done your stack-trick with the thermal pads.

    • Douglas Black

      March 25, 2020 at 4:41 pm

      Hmm that's a good question. It's been a long time since I did testing for MOSFET-induced throttling. I believe there was a sensor called DIMM2 (or perhaps another?) on the EC that correlated with drops in the PL1 limit to below 45W. Run a combined stress test and see if you get any PL1 changes before 45W, and check what other temp sensors correlate with that change (if you observe it).

  9. Dave

    April 2, 2020 at 6:59 am

    I have an XPS 15 9570 and it is overheating just browsing the web. The thing will just turn off sometimes and the fan will still be running. The only way to get it back it to hold the power button till it shuts down and then restart. I am using a WD19TB Thunderbolt dock to my Dell U3417W monitor. Technically I am not using the power supply that the laptop came with, but it is a Dell Dock and delivers 130W just like the original, but through the USB-C port. I am going to repaste the processors and try the pads. I have never done any undervolting but I I’m ready to give it a try. My question is, could the USB-C/Thunderbolt dell dock connection that is also charging my laptop be adding to the overheating problem. I didn't even think about it till I read one of the comments below asking it someone was using the OEM charger.

    • Douglas Black

      April 2, 2020 at 7:05 am

      I don't believe so — it sounds like a thermal paste/heatspreader issue. What do you mean by "overheat", btw? How did you measure temps, and what are they? Check your task manager for programs using CPU. At idle, your computer should be between 0-2% CPU usage with browers open.

    • NB

      April 22, 2020 at 1:20 pm

      I've got the 9570 as well. The most likely issue with your case is the PCH Chip. Unlike the xps 13,
      the tb3 port is NOT connected directly to the cpu. Data and power is routed through the PCH chip, which, of course, has no effective cooling solution. I've read that the most effective fix for this is to apply a 4.5 mm thermal pad to the PCH which is located in the middle-left of the board. I know this because I wanted to get an egpu but saw issues with the PCH overheating. Here's a link addressing the issue :

      • Douglas Black

        April 22, 2020 at 3:10 pm

        This is really interesting… I had no idea that the PCH could lead to FPS drops. I wonder if this is what's behind the 1% lows?

  10. Ignotas

    April 6, 2020 at 7:17 pm

    Just applied grizly compound, mosfet covers. There was not exact exact products on UK amazon, but I think I found 99% good matches, same grizzly brand. Spend around 12£ in total.
    To my BIG surprise game stopped throttling completely! I am a big fan of Diablo 3, it's not heavy on graphics, but I have to play on super low settings, which would still throttle so much that game was unplayable. Now it runs no problems on everything Max settings :)
    By the way I didn't touch any programs, just changed thermal paste and added those stickers.
    Pro tip:
    those stickers have protective plastic on both sides :)

  11. Jack

    May 10, 2020 at 8:24 am

    Thanks for the guide, really helpful. I've replace the thermal pastes and undervolt. My 9560 no longer heat throttle :D

  12. AG

    May 16, 2020 at 5:00 pm

    Did all this step exactly. Unfortunately made no difference in my xps 9560 temps.

  13. Kai

    May 20, 2020 at 9:22 pm

    Actually I have the Dell Xps 15 9570 and I just cleaned my interior including the fans and then replaced as described the old heat paste with the recommended one. Now my Laptop runs so smoothly, perfect. Even without the additionallthermal pads and throttle Software.

    Runs better than when I bought it.
    Thanks for that nice manual, helped me out a lot.

    Three things I`d like to mention:
    There are 12 screws to remove the Bottom Panel, underneath the XPS Logo, there are two additional screws as well, make sure to get them out as well, bevore you attempt to lift the cover.

    Also in my Version of the XPS, there are not 5 screws to remove the heat sink assembly rather 4.

    Make sure to not touch the processor while cleaning it while being electrostatic loaded –> touch some grounded metal beforehand. And do not use a Microfiber Cloth, which can load yourself electrical up. Otherwise you may need a new Laptop ;).

  14. Victor Vu

    May 24, 2020 at 7:27 pm

    Hello everyone. This method is spot on. but it is missing just one thing that make it go beyond. instead of padding everything on the bottom cover, i slab on a 0,2mm sheet of copper with a 2$ cnc from my design for extra air flow and thermal efficiency.

    Now even at 100% CPU and GPU on any task ( i only have MSI kombustor right now to show you all )
    STOCK IDLE: 2.8ghz ~ 34C
    BOOST IDLE: 3.2ghz ~ 40C
    100% CPU and GPU is locked at ~62C. ( Stock 2.8ghz ).
    VRM never go beyond rarely touch 73C. ( Stock 2.8ghz ).
    Premiere Pro rendering heavy 4K files is around 62 ~ 67C ( 3.2ghz boost ).
    And the laptop can sit on my lap ( yes like what a "laptop" should and not incinerate myself ) while running all of this testing and rendering due the copper sheet, this sheet does not touch the bottom so the bottom cover stay cool all the time ( like how a starbuck's cup work with the air barrier ).

    Enough yapping i attach picture of the sheet and the msi kombuster benchmark, should have share this earlier but i was happily resuming my work loads of editing and rendering contents that i forgot about it. Its been 9 months butterly smooth, "cold" and "happy" every time i use the 9560.

    Here it is

    The design:

    The thing installed:

    The result:

    I will be happily answer any question or posting a few more benchmark when i have time.

    Thank you all for experiment things and sharing helpful informations on tackling this Thermal crappy machine. Cheers guys

    • Jason

      June 18, 2020 at 10:51 am

      I absolutely love this added approach. Reaching out to a few people in my area to see if I get the copper cnc’ed by your design as it looks magnificent.

      In the image you shared, what did you use to strap the copper sheet down. Is that white electrical tape holding the top of the copper sheet and black electrical tape running down the sides down to hold it in place?

      Anything I’m missing here that is not included in your description?

    • Joe Shmoe

      August 17, 2020 at 5:21 am

      Hello. My XPS 9560 has been throttling really badly lately, and at times shutting down due to overheating. I cleaned out my fans and replaced one of them and performed this procedure, and it isn't overheating anymore. Playing Civilization 6, I hit 90 deg C, and 5K 2-pass H264 encoding (doing right now in 1st pass), it's averaging about 80 deg C. It is stable, and not throttling or overheating, but I am not reaching anywhere near the temperatures you are. On idle, it's usually around 45 – 50 deg C.

      I am very interested in the details of this and how I might be able to use it to improve cooling performance in my XPS 9560.

      I found several online services that can do custom cuts of copper:

      Did you utilize any of these services?

      How exactly did you install it? Did you just place it on top of the heat sink? Did you apply thermal pads between it and the heat sink / the back cover? Please provide details.

      If you can give me more information, I would very much appreciate it.

  15. Jameson Schultz

    June 4, 2020 at 9:59 pm

    I followed this to a T and now my laptop doesn't show the NVIDIA GPU in device manager or anywhere. Any thoughts?

    • Douglas Black

      June 4, 2020 at 10:22 pm

      Did you happen to not unplug the battery and perhaps touch any points with your screwdriver or some metal? You can kill your GPU that way.

      • Jameson

        June 5, 2020 at 6:43 am

        Wore rubber gloves, battery was unplugged, nothing out of the ordinary. Could the thermal pads cause any sort of shorting out you think? Anyway it's in a computer shop awaiting probably the call that it is dead.

        Same process applied to both the locations listed screw driver was set asside immediately upon removal of screws,everything else seemed to function normally.

        • Douglas Black

          June 5, 2020 at 7:04 am

          That's really, really unlucky, if so. I hope you can find it working again!

  16. NB

    June 5, 2020 at 6:22 am

    Did anyone face any difficulty unscrewing screw number 2 on the heatsink of the 9570? Mine is awfully tight and I've stripped it at this point. I don't know if a screw plier will work but I'll give it a shot

    • Douglas Black

      June 5, 2020 at 7:05 am

      Sometimes they can be very tight. It's good to have screw pliers and extra screws around (ebay!) for that kind of thing. I've definitely stripped a few screws in my time…

    • Dom

      July 11, 2020 at 4:06 pm

      That's a pain! Whenever this has happened to me before I've used "screw extractors", those little drillbits with reverse thread. Always works for me. Good luck!

  17. Dom

    July 11, 2020 at 4:05 pm

    This guide was unbelievably helpful, I'm really grateful to you for putting it together!

    I've got a Dell XPS 15 9560 and pretty much bog standard experience alongside everyone else. Fine for the first two or so years, intermittent crappy performance during CPU-intensive tasks after that, and lately it's been bloody unusable. More of an animated flipbook than a gaming laptop.

    Followed every step here to the letter. Took about an hour and a half – and even that's only because I fiddled a lot with getting the bottom cover off as it was the first time, and wiped the CPU and GPU down several times until I was totally satisfied all the old paste was removed.

    It's like a new machine! None of the old performance problems. Chuffed to bits with the result :D thanks again.

    One more little tidbit which most of us would do anyway I guess – I updated (actually Windows 10 Update forced the update :/ ) to the latest BIOS shortly before taking the laptop apart. That did seem to help significantly with the throttling interestingly, so maybe the newer BIOS is more tolerant of the temperature ranges? Dunno. But worth doing that too, even though it certainly didn't solve the problem 100%

  18. Joe Shmoe

    August 17, 2020 at 12:41 am

    I tried this, but afterwards, running Civilization 6 on my XPS 9560, temperatures hit 90 deg C. So I can't attest to this reducing thermals to ~76 deg under heavy load CPU + GPU.

    My 9560 was throttling really badly lately, which is why I found this article to start with.
    The fans were really dirty, which was part of the problem why it was throttling so bad.
    It was also overheating and shutting down under heavy load.

    Cleaned the fans and did this, and the problem is gone, but I do not know if I can really say this procedure helped any. It may have been just the fans.

  19. Joe Shmoe

    August 19, 2020 at 5:31 pm

    Still hit temperatures of 99 deg C on second pass of H264 encoding, but it didn't throttle much. I did observe at least a 30% improvement in encode times, so it definitely helped a lot.

  20. Amirali

    August 24, 2020 at 4:02 pm

    Thanks a million! After 6 months of suffering you finally saved me!

    I applied your instructions on a 3 year old DELL Precision 5520. I was suffering from high GPU usages by DWM.exe and it was rendering the pc almost unusable.

    5520 has a slightly different VRM layout (actually missing some) so I only put stacked pads on 3 of the hottest ones, based on your reference photo. had to remove a tiny bit of black plastic lining of the protective copper sheet inside the bottom aluminum cover of the 5520, in order for the pads to touch the copper.

    So far all is very good and smooth :)

  21. Elmoearnie

    November 25, 2020 at 4:06 am

    I have a 7590 xps. It's really a shame that Dell charges 1800 for this, even with a i7 , i5, along with this, ppl who have the OLED version experience mouse lags as they simply drag accross the screen. I'm not sure if outsourcing has anything to do with it. Some of the stuff are simple assembly at the factory, but most people would not know how to open their laptops (not tech savvy)
    Even the newest one with the vapor chamber has issues. If I was Dell, just sell the freaking parts to tech people, we can put it together better ourselves. It's always good to review these thing before purchasing.

  22. Geo Pavlov

    December 4, 2020 at 12:47 pm

    Great guide!

    On my XPS 9560 I managed to get my CPU temps down to 67C max from 86-7C (a few minutes stress test on CPU-Z) which I admit was mostly because of dust, but I'm sure thermal paste and pads helped a lot too.
    It didn't get rid off the throttle (it still trottles even when 34C on Idle/browsing) so I had to use ThrottleStop as well – disabling BD PROCHOT – it sill blocks the CPU…

    With these two steps my laptop is working as brand new again, but its unfortunate that XPSs have these issues (all over the internet). I was thinking of getting a new motherboard as I have another issue with charging, but for 600£ on ebay I don't think its worth it.

    Thanks again Douglas!

  23. Vicente

    December 6, 2020 at 5:49 pm


    I've followed the guide few months ago and it's fantastic, thank you Douglas!!!
    Unfourtunatly since BIOS upgrade 1.19, undervolt it's blocked… BIOS update from 1.19 has disabled the undervolt option… I've tried to downgrade the bios to 1.18 but the process failed. I've read it's due to some Intel's lock for BIOS downgrade, so I can't undervolt… I've read that it's to prevent somthing called plundervolt…
    Any ideas to do the BIOS downgrade to allow undervolt again? or other way to enable undervolt again?

    Thank you!!!

  24. Tobias

    January 11, 2021 at 11:20 am

    Hey i have one question.
    I have seen some articles that say
    you should also add thermal pads on top of the heating pipes. Do you recommend that? Or dies that even make a difference? Or could that be bad for the thermal situation?
    Hope you can help me :)

    Great article btw. I will try that mod in the next days :)


    • Douglas Black

      January 11, 2021 at 6:09 pm

      Depends on which model you have. On the 9550/9560 I would recommend it. The 9570 has a bit better VRM cooling.

  25. Tobias Werrbach

    January 13, 2021 at 8:30 am

    Thanks for the quick answer. I already ordered all parts for the mod :)

    Another question: wich BIOS version do you have?
    Everyone says that undervolting is blocked since BIOS 1.19.0. Is that right for throttlestop?

    Thank you :)

  26. Vicente

    January 13, 2021 at 11:05 am

    @Tobias Werrbach
    Hi!! With BIOS 1.19 or later I can't undervolt. As I read, last BIOS that supports undervolting is 1.18, but I can't do a downgrade. I hope you can. If yes, please tell me how do you do.


  27. Tobias

    January 13, 2021 at 3:46 pm

    Ok thank you, i found a solution. It works with 1.5.0 :)
    Just install the update, after setup intantly go into Bios.
    1. There, go to Maintenance >Bios Recovery and click "restore settings", click "BIOS defaults" and click "ok".

    2. Go to Maintenance again > BIOS Downgrade, uncheck "allow bios downgrade", klick apply.

    3. Go to "Security" > UEFI Capsule Firmware Updates and uncheck "enable UEFI Capsule Firmware Updates", apply and exit.

    Now your Bios should be 1.5.0 and undervolting should be available :)
    Worked for me today. Super happy :D

  28. Tobias

    January 13, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    Sorry i made a writing mistake at step two!

    You need to CHECK "allow bios downgrade", not uncheck^^

    Hope it works for you :)

  29. Tobias

    January 13, 2021 at 3:57 pm

    So with version 1.18 it also didn't work for me. But 1.5.0 is fine!
    Even tho it tells you that the update failed after setup, that's a lie!
    When i press windows+shift and type in "msinfo32" it tells me that i have 1.5.0.

    Just follow the BIOS steps that i wrote above and you are ready to undervolt :)

  30. Vicente

    January 14, 2021 at 9:06 am


    I hope I will try this weekend with 1.5 BIOS. I've only tried with 1.18. But… the version you say is 1.15 or 1.0.5??

    In any case I will try "soon".

    Thank you!!!

  31. Tobias

    January 14, 2021 at 5:04 pm

    No 1.5.0 from 15. September 2017
    You can find it on the Dell Update and Downloads page like usual

  32. Vicente

    January 14, 2021 at 6:03 pm

    Thank you Tobias!

  33. Tobias

    January 15, 2021 at 9:21 am

    One question again. I am currently in Bali. Because of that i couldn't get excacly the Pads i wanted.
    So now i have Thermal Pads from grizzly with 8.0 W/mk and another set of pads with 1,5-2 W/mk.

    I thought on putting the 8W on the small VRam and the 2W on the big chips under the heatpipe.
    Do you guys think this will be ok?
    Or should i buy another 8 W/mk pad?
    Thank you!

  34. Steve

    January 21, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    Hey guys, also experiencing these throttling issues, and will give this option a go!

    Couple of questions regarding thermal padding. Read that you recommend to also apply padding to the top of the heat sink pipes. Can you advise the type and thickness required for this?

    Also, regarding undervolting with Throttlestop. I already have this set-up based on the shared info and TS guide, but not sure whether it makes a difference with the temps. Read above that for BIOS v1.19 you cannot undervolt anymore… Is that also the case when using Throttlestop? Just checked system info, I have BIOS v1.21, does anyone have experience with that version vs Throttlestop?

    Thanks for the help guys, after years of struggling with this machine performance vs price tag, this might actually be a good step forward in getting what I paid for…


  35. John

    January 26, 2021 at 1:22 pm

    So Far, I succeed to reduce the throttling really well after re-pasting the CPU and GPU with high quality arctic MX4 thermal paste. XPS 9550, Precision 5510 has no problem from the beginning as long as we set the power manager to BEST PERFORMANCE in high gaming like Farcry 5. It hovers at around 2.8 Ghz. XPS 9560 has a big problem with throttling in Farcry 5, It drops to 1Ghz CPU, and thermal throttling all the time with XTU banchmark. After repasting, it never thermal throttling and hover at around 1.7 Ghz, large gains. XPS 9570 is always really hot and reaching 100C in XTU benchmarks. AFter repasting, it does not show thermal throttling and max temperature in XTU benchmark is about 95C but hit 1700 scores.

  36. FreeReveller

    January 31, 2021 at 4:24 pm

    Hi, I would like to add something that makes a big difference as well. I put thermal paste between the heat pipes and the heat plates. The heat plates are the plates between the pipes and the CPU/GPU. I cleaned this area thoroughly and put paste on it to increase the themal coupling to the pipes. I think this is an overlooked bottleneck in dissipating the heat.

  37. Vicente

    February 25, 2021 at 12:20 pm

    Hi again, Tobias and all of you!

    I did all steps that Tobias wrote to downgrade my BIOS. Now, finally I have BIOS 1.5.0, but when I open ThrottleStop all offset indicators are 0, they don't change… and I can't undervolt. I have the configuration in ThrottleStop that before was working… but now no…

    Any ideas?

    Thank you!

    • Douglas Black

      February 25, 2021 at 4:11 pm

      Did you go to BIOS and click "default settings" yet?

  38. Joe Shmoe

    February 25, 2021 at 5:06 pm

    There's the Intel Management Instrumentation, which may control your ability to undervolt, and its firmware cannot be downgraded, even if the system bios firmware downgrade is successful. I had the same issue where i managed to downgrade my firmware (all firmware but Intel Management Instrumentation succeeded), but was still unable to undervolt.

  39. Vicente

    February 25, 2021 at 5:10 pm

    Hi Douglas!

    Yes, I did it! I did this steps in BIOS:
    1. Go to Maintenance >Bios Recovery and click "restore settings", click "BIOS defaults" and click "ok".
    2. Go to Maintenance again > BIOS Downgrade, uncheck "allow bios downgrade", click apply.
    3. Go to "Security" > UEFI Capsule Firmware Updates and uncheck "enable UEFI Capsule Firmware Updates", apply and exit.

    But FIVR stills block.

  40. Vicente

    February 27, 2021 at 9:11 pm

    Hi everyone!

    Yesterday I did again the steps to reset bios, etc. and it works!!! Now I can undervolt again!

    Unluckily now I have a problem with my dock linked by thunderbolt :(

  41. Tobias

    February 28, 2021 at 2:15 am

    Nice, happy to hear that :)

  42. Tobias

    February 28, 2021 at 11:27 am

    So finally i made the mod on my laptop. I am in Bali right now, so getting the right parts was a bit hard. But better late than never^^

    First shock was when i opened up the Laptop to find out somebody tried this before me and did a really poor job. He used 3 different types of cheap thermal pads. So i ripped everything out, repasted and put on the Arctic Pads just like described here. Then i put a slice left and right on the heating pipes. Undervolting is also active with BIOS 1.5.0 :)

    So now my laptop stays at around 40°C and 50°C while browsing, office work, and normal multimedia stuff. He is reaaally quiet.
    Under heavy use he goes up to 60°C, nothing more, still quiet. Of course, when i use Adobe lightroom it goes up to 70°C and while gaming till 80°C, but the thermal throttling and the framedrops are just gone. :)
    To mention here: before undervolting and modding this thing has gone up to 70-80°C just by starting up and looking at it. While lightroom and gaming i had 90°C and framedrops to under 15 FPS.

    So i can say that i am really happy with the result. So thank you very much for making this tutorial my friend, it helped me a lot.
    And thanks to everybody helping in the comments :)

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