Question Half mini PCIe wifi card replacement for an old dell laptop ?

varunmehta11

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Aug 18, 2008
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I have a 2010 model Dell Studio 1458 laptop which has a Dell DW1520 Half mini PCIe wifi card which is a Broadcom BCM943224HMS chipset. Additionally, it has a separate Bluetooth card connected inside the display bezel.

I'm planning to upgrade the wifi card to support 802.11ac 5Ghz wifi connections, but i could only find Wifi+BT Combo cards with this interface/card size.

Is it ok to replace a Wifi card with a Combo card when there is already a seperate BT card present. Kindly suggest me a good(mostly compatible) upgrade Wifi card for the laptop. I'm interested in going for Intel 7260 or 3160 but not sure whether these combo cards would work.

CPU: Core i3-350M
Current OS : Windows 10 64bit(build 1903)
RAM: 8gb
SSD: BX500 480gb
 
In general if the card will physically fit it will work. It is somewhat surprising you got win10 to work on that old of a laptop many times you can't get the drivers.

If it was a HP I would caution to check the bios list since they have laptop models they lock to only use a small list of cards....they kinda want you to only buy stuff hp sells. Dell only did this for some of their corporate models years ago.

It should not hurt to have 2 bluetooth devices in the machine you should be able to disable one, not sure what happens if you try to actually use both.

Key is going to be to be sure you have enough antenna cables. I have not looked at the part numbers you list but it does little good to buy a card that need 3 antenna so it can do 3x3 mimo but the laptop only has 2.
 

varunmehta11

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Aug 18, 2008
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18,540
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In general if the card will physically fit it will work. It is somewhat surprising you got win10 to work on that old of a laptop many times you can't get the drivers.

If it was a HP I would caution to check the bios list since they have laptop models they lock to only use a small list of cards....they kinda want you to only buy stuff hp sells. Dell only did this for some of their corporate models years ago.

It should not hurt to have 2 bluetooth devices in the machine you should be able to disable one, not sure what happens if you try to actually use both.

Key is going to be to be sure you have enough antenna cables. I have not looked at the part numbers you list but it does little good to buy a card that need 3 antenna so it can do 3x3 mimo but the laptop only has 2.
I was lucky to get all the drivers working after searching through dell support website. Had to do a lot of trial and error of drivers.

I have attached the pic of my current wlan card. It has 2 antennas, so it should support a dual-band 802.11ac wlan card.
Should i go for Intel 7260 or 3160 or look for a Broadcom card ? I'm not sure which half mini PCI-e card would have the complete driver support in windows 10

 

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