Dell m1530 grainy LCD/Display


I have never had so many things wrong with one laptop.  After lots of eye strain I decided that I needed to research why my laptop was so hard to read under dim lighting conditions.  I have had Toshiba’s and HP’s that never shared this problem.  I found several forums talking about grainy screens on the Dell XPS m1530.  I had spent a lot on the two laptops that my wife and I wanted.  I expect some quality.  These were my first Dell laptops (and could be my last).  The lcd screen is dim, grainy, and unclear!

Here is some of the most important information I compiled from all the forums:

WSXGA+ 1680×1050 Panels
LG Philips LPLF300 – Dell P/N: XK309 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Not Grainy
Samsung SEC3350 – Dell P/N: RW985 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Grainy

WSXGA/WXGA+ 1440×900 Panels
AU Optronics AUO2077 – Dell P/N: GU429 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Grainy
Samsung SEC3157 – Dell P/N: Unknown – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Some Grain
LG Philips LPLDF00 – Dell P/N: XP059 – Size: 15.4″ – Experience: Not Grainy

Samsung SEC4457 – Dell P/N: Unknown – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Grainy

WXGA 1280×800 Panels
AU Optronics (Model Unknown) – Dell P/N: UX303 – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Unknown
LG Philips LPL0000 – Dell P/N: WR362 – Size: 14.1″ – Experience: Not Grainy

Don’t wait on the screen.  Get it replaced.  My dell is barely 3 months old and I have already had the motherboard replaced and a new CPU.  The laptop looks good; but, it feels flimsy.  I wouldn’t recommend it anymore.

Some pictures of the differences:


Here is the transcript from the online chat I had with tech support.  I only included the important parts:

Session Started with Agent (Dell Rep 1)
Agent (Dell Rep 1): “Thank you for contacting Dell XPS Premium Support. My name is ….  and my rep ID number is XXXXXXX. How may I help you today?”
ThreadAbort: “Hello, my laptop screen is grainy and hurts my eyes.”
ThreadAbort: “There is something wrong with it.”
Session Started with Agent (Dell Rep 2)
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Hello and welcome to the Dell XPS experience. My name is …. . How may I assist you today?”
ThreadAbort: “Hello, my laptop screen is grainy and hurts my eyes.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I’m sorry that you have this issue, please don’t worry I’ll try my best to help you resolve this.”
ThreadAbort: “Ok”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Please allow me 2 to 3 minutes to pull up your account information. In the meantime, may I have the phone number(s) to reach you incase of a follow-up?”
ThreadAbort: “1-XXX-XXX-XXXX”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for staying connected.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “As I can see from the records, you need assistance with the XPS 1530 with an operating system as Windows Vista Ultimate. Am I correct?”
ThreadAbort: “yes”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Since when are you facing this issue”
ThreadAbort: “since I got this laptop. It is hurting my eyes more and more. I thought I could live with it. But, now it just bothers me too much.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Is the issue with the same system we are chatting on?”
ThreadAbort: “yes. I have it hooked to an external monitor”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Okay.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I can connect to your computer remotely, with your permission and check with a few settings on it.”
ThreadAbort: “ok. if you like. But, I am a computer expert and know that this LCD is grainy and of poor quality.”
ThreadAbort: “it looks fantastic on my external monitor”
ThreadAbort: “btw.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I appreciate your expertise, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Did you try to update the BIOS and checked if that made any difference?”
ThreadAbort: “yes, I am running A08. The latest”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Okay.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, please give me a minute here while I check with my supervisor if I can replace the LCD for you.”
ThreadAbort: “thanks …”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “You are welcome, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for your patience, Christopher.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I have managed to take my supervisor’s approval and I will go ahead and replace the LCD for you.”
ThreadAbort: “thank you. That would be very helpful!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “My pleasure!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I will go-ahead and create a dispatch. Would you please verify the shipping address?”
ThreadAbort: …
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Could you please give me 2-3 minutes while I create a dispatch for the part? I will give you the details after that.”
ThreadAbort: “sure. Thanks.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “You are welcome,”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, I can send you a service technician to replace the LCD. is that okay?”
ThreadAbort: “sure. I can do it myself. But, a service tech is fine too. :)
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “All right. I will send a service technician :)
ThreadAbort: “sounds good.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Thank you for your patience.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “I have created the dispatch. Please make a note of your dispatch number. The dispatch number # is XXXXXXX.”
ThreadAbort: “ok. Got it.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “The service technician will come down to your place to replace the part within 3-5 business days.”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “Christopher, the service technician will give you a call tomorrow or day after and will set an appointment with you.”
ThreadAbort: “great. Thanks …!”
Agent (Dell Rep 2): “My pleasure.”



As you can see, my experience with the online chat mode was great.  I hate calling Dell though, I get bounced around the world.

Some more information at:

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  1. How did you manage to get the better screen? Any haggling need with the CSR? I bought the m1530 and am as equally unimpressed as you are.

  2. Christopher Chenoweth

    Hi Ryan,

    Unfortunately it is the luck of the draw. Although, my wife and I got the LG screen on the first try. So did a friend of ours.

    Hope that helps!

  3. I just received my Dell m1530 XPS, it has samsung screen and is terrible quality.

    I called dell XPS care, and they told me that it’s not faulty, so they aren’t replacing it. I explained that it was a different panel to the one i ordered at the Dell shop. They don’t care, and said that some people prefer the samsung panels (although i can’t see how anyone would prefer something of a lower quality for the same money)

    Waiting for Dell customer care to call me back, although i suspect they will probably shaft me.

  4. Christopher Chenoweth

    Hello Scott,

    You have to try again. I did the online chat. It seems to work better. Like I said in my chat, it hurt my eyes. I’m happy with it now.

    In fact, I am typing on it right now at 1:13 AM :) (while watching tv in low light)

    Take care,

  5. Hi Chris, thanks for the feedback. Unfortunately, I am in Australia, and i don’t think there is an option for online chat support.

    My only avenue is to call XPS team in Malaysia, which is unfortunate, because they don’t actually care about their customers, or Australian law.

    I have spoken with about 5 different people regarding this, however they are all saying the same thing. I’ve been told they had a meeting about this issue, and all staff were informed to either offer a refund (under the Customer Satisfaction jargon) or nothing. They tried to sell me an LG panel from their ‘parts’ section at $569, but would not replace the dodgy samsung one i received.

    I will be asking for a refund, however they have already told me that there’s a $174 fee for that. This makes me incredibly incredibly angry. I’ve tried to explain that if i’d just changed my mind about the product, I would be happy to forefit the $174, however, they’ve sent me the incorrect panel (as the LG was displayed in the Dell shop I ordered it from, and i had no idea they would give me a dodgy one instead)

    I want either a full refund, or the LG panel like the one i saw in the shop. They wont budge, even after i threatened to cut all Dell purchasing from our business (I’m the IT manager at medium size business).

    I’ve spoken with 3 managers from ‘Customer Care’ so far, and still getting the same story. Looks like I’ll just have to live with paying dell $174 for the priviledge of being unsatisfied and sherked around.

    It frustrates me, because i know they ‘used’ to swap these panels. They’ve just stopped it.

    My other avenue would be to utilize the ‘Complete Cover’ accidental breakage stuff they sold me with it. I’d rather not do that however, because I’m more than likely going to get screwed over again.

    I won’t buy anything from Dell again, for myself, or through work, and wont recommend them to anyone who asks my advice.

  6. Hello! I am in the same situation with my M1530. To make it even more drastic I have the two screens LG and Samsung in front of me now, and the contrast between them is brutal. The thing is after numerous failures and flaws in the motherbord and the hard drive, that I´m having my old 1530 replaced. It has the LG screen. The new one that arrived today has the Samsung screen. I talked to dell tech service and same story, no malfunctions, no replace… Customer Care promised to call back, but I don´t think I´ll be lucky. If I knew how to change the screens myself, I guess taht I´d take the risk and do it. But sadly I can´t. :( I will try the “my-eyes-hurt-tactic” tomorrow. I hope it helps.

    Take care,


  7. Chris Chenoweth

    I would switch the two. It is pretty easy to change an lcd. And with the 1530 (this may not be a good thing). It literally falls apart in your handles by touching that area. :)

  8. Thanks for the quick reply, Chris! Could you please explain me or guide me to a detailed explanation of the changing procedure, as I am very scared not to break something. I could try removing the old lcd first, this way I would risk damaging only the old computer which is scheduled for return. However, I am a little bit worried about how DELL would react when they find that the displays have been swtiched and what would happen to my warranty.

    Thanks again for your reply,

    Cheers from Spain!

  9. Chris Chenoweth

    The plastic around the display just snaps up. Lightly tug on the plastic all the way around the lcd. It goes all the way down to where the laptop hinges. The plastic has no screws holding it. Just be real gentle and you won’t break it. Beyond that there are screws holding the panel in place. I believe it is 4 or 5 little philips type head screws. Then you will be able to lift up the LCD and it has a small cable going to the back with some adhesive tape holding it still. You just need to peel that tape up.

    Everything on both laptops should be exactly the same.

    I assure you, with care, Dell would not even notice (other than having a crappy samsung panel when they get that one back! And if I were them, I would demand the pretty LG – Just kidding).

  10. Thanks again Chris! I just took off the plastic frame from the old laptop. It really is easier than it seems! I am little bit puzzled about the screws, so I’ll stop and wait what Customer Service’s reaction will be to my last call. The lady seemed really nice and told me that everything depends on me convincing tech-service that the screen is actually damaged. I told her that I’ll give it a try and mentioned her me switching the displays myself as a last resort and she told me that she would discuss it with her superior. Actually I don’t care what they say. I will switch them, or at least try to if techies still seem unimpressed by my case. The last secret weapon that I have is that I noticed a flicker just on top of the vista start menu ball on the SEC lcd, so I really hope they take it as a defect…

    Thanks once again for your quick reply! One thing is for sure now: if DELL can’t do it, I’ll do it! Or at least I’ll try to, LOL.

    I’ll post the updates on the case as soon as I have them!

  11. Hi again! I went a little firther yesterday and unscrewed entirely the display. I also managed to disconnect and reconnect the cable you were talking about. However there is a second, smaller, cable which goes to the bottom and the screen and it’s connected with a strange blue plastic thingy that I was too scared to try to disconnect. Could you please give me more details on what to do with this cable?

    Meanwhile I am still in touch with DELL. Both people (from Customer Attention and Tech Service) are really making their best to resolve the case. However techs have orders not to replace screens unless they are physically damaged. I sent them photos of both displays today, so it’s my last chance of convincing them. The worst part is that even if they decide to change the screen, nobody can tell me what type the new one will be. And it most probably would be a Samsung again, I guess. :(

    I’ll get to you back when I receive a response from the tech guy. Friendly enough, when I told him the possibility of me changing manually the screens he told me “don’t forgot to check the service manuals”, LOL.

    Oh and one another question, what is this strange aluminum like folio on the top of the LCD. It’s “says don’t touch!” but I couldn’t manage not to do it, and now my fingers appear over it. Display is fine though.

    Thanks for the feedback!

  12. Chris Chenoweth


    The bottom connector is for powering the backlight (The CCFL) of the LCD. It is simple to unplug.

    It is really not so bad.

    The top of the lcd is where the main control board is and connectors to the main part of the lcd panel. I’ve touched it several times without issues on lcd panels in the past. Although, it should be easy enough to avoid.

    - Chris

  13. SUCCESS!!! Using the service manual, I switched the panels and everything works perfect! There was a slight mishap, though. The lower and top parts of the plastic bezel were literally glued with a strong adhesive tape in the new laptop, so it took me about an hour to open it, using a knife. Luckily I did not manage to brake/scratch anything, so I am really happy! It is interesting that they’ve decided to glue the lcd and the bezel, I guess that this would be another step from DELL’s policy to protect the crappy samsungs and keep them destroying the image of such a good laptop.

    Anyway, a happy ending for me! Thank you so very much for guiding me during the switching process! I hope DELL management realizes its mistake asap and prevents such issues in future.

    Wish you all the best,


  14. This thread info is perfect timing as I am close to buying a Dell XPS M1530. As I build the system on their web site, it lists the sku munber and product code. Is there any way to know by either of these 2 numbers if the screen will be a Samsung or a LG? My info is as follows. Any feedback will be greatly apprecaited.High Resolution LED LCD (1440 x 900). Product code DXGAPLC………….SKU # 320-6693

  15. My M1530 (wife’s PC) screen dropped red output today. I called Dell support and they quickly agreed to replace the screen. PC is only about 7 months old. I will be very curious to know if they bring a Samsung or LG screen.

    I also have a M1330 that I use daily. It is about 9 months old. My NVidia video card failed on that one. It took about a week and 4-5 calls to get them to just replace the MB (vidoe chip integrated), Fan and heatsink. The M1330 issue is all oover the net.

    I bought Dell because I read they were one of the leaders in quality. My experience to date has been much worse than my previous Compaq, Fujitsi, Toshiba and HP laptops. Guess it is just a lot of hype.

  16. Mike:

    There is no way to tell which one you will get. The High-Res LED LCD shouldn’t have an issue. But, I couldn’t promise that. :)


    I agree, I bought DELL based off quality experiences of my friends in the past. I assumed (yes I know) that the XPS would be a high-end DELL machine. I guess I was wrong. An HP would have been a much better way to go minus the spamware. This will be my last DELL laptop.

  17. Hi. I was just customizing the system and as I was wondering which LCD option to choose I got on this website.Now I am not so sure if I should buy the dell xps or not.I see they have promotions where you get like $290 off and it expires end of August.Why did they make it to expire end of August?are they introducing new models after or making improvements?
    Is it possible to tell them to put the LG LCD when you order?Thanks in advance for replies.

  18. It is not possible to order the LG. I have heard that the new 1080p display is good.

    Secondly, that promotion runs all the time. I have never seen a 1530 without something around $300 off. :)

  19. Thanks for the fast reply.
    I didn’t know that they have this promotions all year long since I only started looking for a laptop a week ago.
    Since you are more into computers than me, would you recommend a good laptop?

  20. I just forgot to ask something. You wrote that the new 1080p display is good.Which would that be from the options given when you customize the laptop?

  21. I just bought a refurbished M1530 and I saw that the screen is the Samsung XR787. Is that the one is grainy?
    Is with all of them?
    I called Dell CS and ask whether I can return the product and they never mention any fee.


  22. @hyude

    I haven’t heard of that display. Does it seem grainy to you? Do you have another laptop besides the Dell to compare to?

    By far the best display is the LG.

    Dell needs to fix these displays and acknowledge the issue. I can’t trust buying another laptop from them after this.

    My next laptop will be an HP or Toshiba.

  23. Dude!

    Get MacBook Pro!


  24. Great. Another Mac Nut!

  25. Hi Chris just wanted to know ( I know this subject is a little old) but I have a dell xps m1530 and have a 1280 x800 screen I wanted to replace it with a higher resolution could u or someone confirm if this is possible and if I would need to change anything else other than the screen or cables. Thanks

  26. I would imagine so. The cables are pretty standard these days. The screen sizes are all the same.

    I would say, go for it!

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