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Thread: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    43

    Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    Alright so as I imagine most of you already know, System 76 has put out a new addition to their laptop line: The Bonobo Extreme (bonx6). After spending the last few weeks drooling over this device and comparing it to my current panp9, I have decided to bite the bullet and buy one after watching this video review on it. Anyway the machine looks amazing. Even though my panp9 has been extremely awesome, I've decided that since my wife's Sony laptop is getting a bit long in the tooth, the time to upgrade has come and she'll be inheriting my panp9 as a result in addition to being transitioned over to Linux from Windows.

    The primary motivation for buying this laptop over my existing panp9 was the inclusion of the Nvidia GPU. Ironically enough that was also my biggest motivation for not buying it. The reason being is that after suffering with the Nvidia Linux driver for years on various machines I have come to dislike it a great deal. That dislike was reaffirmed when I realized how well the Intel HD4000 in my panp9 worked in Linux. So giving the bonx6 a chance is actually a bit of a stretch for me. Prior to buying it I asked the S76 Sales Reps a few questions concerning issues I've had with the Nvidia Linux drivers in the past (the biggest two being the inability of the Nvidia driver to detect ACPI state changes without switching to a virtual console and back and the fact that I could never seem to add custom resolutions to the Nvidia driver config and get them to work - something the Intel driver allows to happen easily using the standard xrandr tool) and they said that these issues were not issues on the bonx6 and also said that the Nvidia driver has improved a great deal over the last six months. Maybe Linus' middle finger did the trick, eh?

    Anyway - hopefully I'll have the machine by the first of the new year. It will take me some time to get it setup as I don't use Ubuntu and since this will be my first UEFI machine (yes it uses UEFI instead of the age old BIOS according to the review I linke above) transitioning my existing Arch Linux install is probably going to be tricky. When I get it, I will be sure to detail and document my experiences in this thread.

    So that brings me to my question: Has anybody else purchased this machine? If so, what do you think? I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the matter.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Beans
    5

    Re: Lets get this party started - Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    I just got my Bonobo Extreme delivered a couple of hours ago. Haven't had a chance to use it yet but will post back with my thoughts on it once I get some use out of it.

    I will say, It's a big machine, which is fine with me because I don't really travel much with a laptop. If you're looking for portability, this isn't the laptop for you though.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Beans
    57
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Smile Re: Lets get this party started - Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    I got mine about a week ago. So far, no major problems, but haven't dug deep.

    I dumped Ubuntu/Unity since I loathe the interface, switched to Cinnarch. In other words, no problems installing alternative Linux flavors. So far, everything just works. But haven't tried the keyboard lights or fingerprint reader at all.

    Got the Nvidia 670, just one, and figured I'd be able to upgrade later if I needed. I'm upgrading from an Asus N73JQ, which had Nvidia 425M, so if that could handle Portal2, the 670GTX should do well. (Wikipedia specs suggest its about 5X faster.)

    Nvidia drivers work well, though dual screen can be a bit tricky sometimes. Running full screen games or even Heaven benchmark, it will choose a screen on its own based on the resolution, rather than the main screen. So, upon exit, I have to use Nvidia settings to switch back. Likely a Cinnamon problem.

    My Asus N73JQ was just as big, so I'm used to this size laptop.

    USB 3.0 ports work well, unlike my Asus. :/

    SATA-III ports work well, I get full speed out of my SSD drives. Drive slots can be a bit snug.

    I do wish the mSATA port was SATA-III, but that's a limitation of the Intel HM77 chipset, not the Bonobo. Anyone know if it's possible to software select which ports are SATA-III enabled?

    Only problem I have is eSATA is only 1.5GBps, have not figured out why. Seems consistent across other distros, yet I KNOW I have 3Gbps devices. (Same for my N73JQ recently. Might be a kernel regression?)
    Last edited by abeowitz; December 17th, 2012 at 10:08 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Beans
    43

    Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    Abe, did you have to do anything special in regards to the bootloader on the machine? As I understand it, the laptop uses UEFI instead of the age old BIOS. I'm actually looking to transition the existing arch install I have on the panp9 to the bonx6 when it arrives so if you have anything to add that would be most appreciated. A quick google shows me that Cinnarch comes with UEFI support out of the box. That means it might prove to be a viable option if I choose to reinstall rather than transition the existing install. I'm hoping to avoid that if at all possible though.

    Also, how does the GPU react when you unplug the laptop and plug it back in? Is it downclocking and upclocking as it should? Traditionally I've had problems with that sort of thing with Nvidia drivers (typically resolved by switching to a virtual console and back to X). In addition, have you had any luck setting up custom resolutions for the screen (mostly 16x9 stuff like 1024x576 for instance)?
    Last edited by jaylittle; December 18th, 2012 at 04:20 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Beans
    57
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Smile Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    Jaylittle,

    I was able to move the drive from my Asus to the Bonobo and boot without any modifications or problems. (Both Nvidia)

    The UEFI/BIOS supports traditionally partitioned disks and boot loaders like GRUB.

    Have not tried UEFI boot/partitions on the Bonobo, but I do have a disk I can try.

    The BIOS has an option for Windows8 UEFI mode. Guess what this does...


    Will check Nvidia/CPU power behavior tomorrow (Tues).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Beans
    43

    Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    That's good to know. This means moving to the new machine will be quite a bit easier than I anticipated as all I will need to do is switch video drivers Thanks for the details Abe - they are most appreciated!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Beans
    57
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Post Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    In the Nvidia-settings app, resolution of the LCD is limited to 1920x1080, however, if I force Heaven benchmark to 1024x576 it works, but is a bit stretched vertically bordered by black on left & right.

    Not sure how to measure the power settings. The Nvidia settings "Power Mizer" shows:



    It says "Battery" even though it's plugged in.

    It doesn't change if I unplug the laptop.

    So, if you know a better way to check, lemme know.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Beans
    57
    Distro
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Post Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    FWIW:

    Code:
    00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 3rd Gen Core processor DRAM Controller (rev 09)
    00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Xeon E3-1200 v2/3rd Gen Core processor PCI Express Root Port (rev 09)
    00:01.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Xeon E3-1200 v2/3rd Gen Core processor PCI Express Root Port (rev 09)
    00:14.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB xHCI Host Controller (rev 04)
    00:16.0 Communication controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family MEI Controller #1 (rev 04)
    00:1a.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #2 (rev 04)
    00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family High Definition Audio Controller (rev 04)
    00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 1 (rev c4)
    00:1c.1 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 2 (rev c4)
    00:1c.2 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family PCI Express Root Port 3 (rev c4)
    00:1d.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller #1 (rev 04)
    00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation HM77 Express Chipset LPC Controller (rev 04)
    00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation 7 Series Chipset Family 6-port SATA Controller [AHCI mode] (rev 04)
    00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation 7 Series/C210 Series Chipset Family SMBus Controller (rev 04)
    01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: NVIDIA Corporation Device 11a1 (rev a1)
    01:00.1 Audio device: NVIDIA Corporation GK104 HDMI Audio Controller (rev a1)
    04:00.0 Unassigned class [ff00]: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. Device 5289 (rev 01)
    04:00.2 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8111/8168B PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controller (rev 0a)
    05:00.0 Network controller: Intel Corporation Centrino Advanced-N 6235 (rev 24)
    Code:
    Module                  Size  Used by
    fuse                   69213  3 
    wacom                  42610  0 
    uvcvideo               72788  0 
    videobuf2_vmalloc       2469  1 uvcvideo
    videobuf2_memops        2283  1 videobuf2_vmalloc
    videobuf2_core         24073  1 uvcvideo
    videodev              100860  2 uvcvideo,videobuf2_core
    media                  10406  2 uvcvideo,videodev
    joydev                  9992  0 
    hid_logitech_dj        10190  0 
    usb_storage            47385  1 
    uas                    11120  0 
    snd_hda_codec_hdmi     24529  1 
    hid_generic             1114  0 
    coretemp                6071  0 
    kvm_intel             124718  0 
    kvm                   374014  1 kvm_intel
    crc32c_intel            1988  0 
    ghash_clmulni_intel     4278  0 
    aesni_intel            42082  0 
    aes_x86_64              7556  1 aesni_intel
    aes_generic            26139  2 aesni_intel,aes_x86_64
    ablk_helper             1973  1 aesni_intel
    cryptd                  8742  3 ghash_clmulni_intel,aesni_intel,ablk_helper
    usbhid                 37036  1 hid_logitech_dj
    arc4                    2040  2 
    btrfs                 718583  2 
    hid                    85974  3 hid_generic,usbhid,hid_logitech_dj
    crc32c                  1769  1 
    libcrc32c               1003  1 btrfs
    zlib_deflate           20437  1 btrfs
    iwldvm                171052  0 
    mac80211              426350  1 iwldvm
    nvidia               9340873  55 
    iTCO_wdt                5256  0 
    mxm_wmi                 1468  0 
    iTCO_vendor_support     1930  1 iTCO_wdt
    snd_hda_codec_realtek    61420  1 
    microcode              12346  0 
    evdev                  10267  17 
    psmouse                71952  0 
    serio_raw               4690  0 
    pcspkr                  1900  0 
    i2c_i801                9572  0 
    snd_hda_intel          26181  5 
    snd_hda_codec          98034  3 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_intel
    snd_hwdep               6429  1 snd_hda_codec
    snd_pcm                75735  3 snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel
    snd_page_alloc          7218  2 snd_pcm,snd_hda_intel
    video                  11277  0 
    acpi_cpufreq            5934  0 
    iwlwifi               125182  1 iwldvm
    mperf                   1300  1 acpi_cpufreq
    r8169                  56872  0 
    snd_timer              18935  1 snd_pcm
    mii                     4092  1 r8169
    snd                    60189  17 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hwdep,snd_timer,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_pcm,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel
    i2c_core               20708  3 i2c_i801,nvidia,videodev
    lpc_ich                10610  0 
    cfg80211              177109  3 iwlwifi,mac80211,iwldvm
    ac                      2537  0 
    soundcore               5443  1 snd
    thermal                 8120  0 
    mei                    32666  0 
    rfkill                 15605  1 cfg80211
    battery                 6774  0 
    wmi                     8380  1 mxm_wmi
    button                  4663  0 
    processor              26856  1 acpi_cpufreq
    loop                   18161  0 
    vfat                   10120  0 
    fat                    48403  1 vfat
    ext4                  440435  2 
    crc16                   1360  1 ext4
    jbd2                   78802  1 ext4
    mbcache                 6027  1 ext4
    ehci_hcd               41817  0 
    xhci_hcd               87083  0 
    usbcore               150472  7 uas,wacom,uvcvideo,usb_storage,ehci_hcd,usbhid,xhci_hcd
    sr_mod                 14824  0 
    usb_common               955  1 usbcore
    cdrom                  35521  1 sr_mod
    sd_mod                 29560  7 
    ahci                   21361  3 
    libahci                20024  1 ahci
    libata                167757  2 ahci,libahci
    scsi_mod              133434  5 uas,usb_storage,libata,sd_mod,sr_mod
    Last edited by abeowitz; December 18th, 2012 at 09:35 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Beans
    43

    Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    It looks like you are on the right portion of the Nvidia setup screen. When you switch from AC to the battery, in theory the performance level should change (this behavior can vary based upon xorg config settings however). When you switch from the battery to the AC it should change back. If it doesn't change in either event, try switching to a virtual console and switching back. If it changes then, it means that Nvidia still hasn't got their act together in regards to power management. If it doesn't change even then, then it may mean that their power management has actually improved to the point where you have to run some sort of 3d application in order to force it to upclock. Not too shocking as I'm prepared to live with it. Still a tiny bit disappointing though.

    Edit: Nevermind - the question is already answered. The fact it doesn't update the power source in the window when you change it pretty much says it all. Try switching to a virtual console and back and I bet you'll see it update <sigh> Oh well - I was prepared for this. No biggie.
    Last edited by jaylittle; December 19th, 2012 at 01:33 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Beans
    43

    Re: Bonobo Extreme (bonx6)

    According to the Arch wiki entry on Nvidia, the driver can detect the power source but only if the acpid daemon is installed and set to run on startup. It might be worth trying to install that and see if it makes the driver more responsive to power state changes. I doubt it, as I believe I've gone down that road before.... but it's worth a shot. If you don't want to bother, don't worry too much. I got the shipping notification on mine and it will be here on Friday. w00t!
    Last edited by jaylittle; December 19th, 2012 at 01:42 AM.

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