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Old 12-05-2021, 09:48 PM   #1
Topcat
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Default Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

It's been a while since I've done one....this one has been sitting for a while.

I say retro-ish; as this is all circa 2006. Yes, it's been that long ago!! The motherboard to be used is a KFN5-D SLI that was an ebay rescue sometime early this year...had bad caps; the seller knew it.....and was basically selling it for peanuts + the cost of shipping....and it's not a very common board, so I grabbed it. It has a pair of Opteron Barcelona quadcores @ 2.5GHz; the fastest it can take. This board does not support Shanghai cores. I added 64gb ECC RAM, ECC DDR2 is silly cheap these days, IIRC it cost be ~$40....you can barely feed two people at McDonald's for that these days.

Now for the GPU's....I have a pair of period-specific GTX285's and a not-so-period-specific pair of GTX 560Ti's. I'm leaning toward the period-specifics....

..and now for the case....it was a freebie I got from a local printing company a year or so ago, bad Asus P5N-D in it. I can hear Momaka's teeth gnashing over this build already because of the color of the case....but its actually a pretty decent and not over-done CoolerMaster....and here we go!!







...and the core hardware... Ignore that hard drive sitting there, that belong to something else.



Thermaltake TR2-600W.... I've seen a lot of mixed opinions of Thermaltake power supplies; this is the first one I've come across. Not sure who OEM's them..... The supply is good....but when the time comes, I'll crack it open and have a look at it for sure.



Now time to start tearing down the case. It doesn't show too bad in the pics, but it's filthy.

The bad motherboard....





I've never seen this before....a block for all the front panel connectors that plugs into the motherboard.... Interesting!



Bad board out. CPU was a C2D @ 2.1, a bit of a turd for what this board could accept.



Case roof & front bezel....again, the pics don't show the filth.



Front & inside...





All the fans pulled. This case has many fan ports that are drilled for both 120mm and 140mm fans. Ports that can take 140mm fans will get them....I have a big box full of them.





My wife thought this would be a great screw holder....



...and case apart! Next step is cleaning...



Until then!
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Old 12-05-2021, 11:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Am I missing something here? Isn't that a P5N-D?

Heh, I have a superclocked GTX 285. Used to have two in SLI (P6T Deluxe v2). Killed one of them by a bad wiring by yours truly. Motherboard wasn't drawing enough from the PCI 12v, so the cards drew more from the motherboard +4 pci express rail. Causing the +4 on the ATX 20 connector to get hot and begin to burn/corrode, losing contact, voltage drops, amps raise, PSU kicks. I soldered new pins from a donor PSU....and I reversed them (with one card in, not the other)
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Old 12-06-2021, 12:03 AM   #3
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uranium-235 View Post
Am I missing something here? Isn't that a P5N-D?
As explained, it's bad. It was in the case when I got it.
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Old 12-06-2021, 01:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

GTX285s are much later than 2006. An equivalent, would be an 8800 GT/GTS. Or 7-series, which commonly have the dreaded Sacon FZ caps!
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Old 12-06-2021, 05:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
Thermaltake TR2-600W.... I've seen a lot of mixed opinions of Thermaltake power supplies; this is the first one I've come across. Not sure who OEM's them..... The supply is good....but when the time comes, I'll crack it open and have a look at it for sure.
thermaltake psus are oem-ed from channel well technology or cwt. the issue is that thermaltake likes to cheap out on the caps when ordering from cwt and they often have junk caps like junfool, fuh-joo-yoo and what not. definitely crack it open and recap if u want the build to last or run it 24/7 as a server.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
I've never seen this before....a block for all the front panel connectors that plugs into the motherboard.... Interesting!
yea asus' mid and high end mobos came with that. asus' marketing nomenclature for it is "q-connector". see attached image of it from the manual of one of my asus mobos.

of course, it only works on asus mobos since their boards all have the same pinout for the different front panel connectors, tho u can try it on other brand motherboards if the pin positioning is similar or the same but different pinout function for each pin so beware of the differing pinout and connect it appropriately. dont fry anything!
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File Type: jpg asus q-connector.jpg (101.2 KB, 9 views)
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Old 12-06-2021, 08:52 AM   #6
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by RJARRRPCGP View Post
GTX285s are much later than 2006. An equivalent, would be an 8800 GT/GTS. Or 7-series, which commonly have the dreaded Sacon FZ caps!
The 200 series was released in June '08. The release of the KFN5-D board was May '07. Close enough. ...but FWIW, the final BIOS release was September 2008. It's a bit of a hodge podge, the Core2 Duo CPU in the P5N-D dated '05, the P5N-D board is dated '09 (newer than I thought it was, going by dates on first-release drivers)....but its fried and in the scrap bin.

PC's don't age out nearly as quick as they used to.....but this is still a semi-relic, a good ~13+yrs old. Restored and let it season a few more years, then we have retro.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaosLegionnaire View Post
thermaltake psus are oem-ed from channel well technology or cwt. the issue is that thermaltake likes to cheap out on the caps when ordering from cwt and they often have junk caps like junfool, fuh-joo-yoo and what not. definitely crack it open and recap if u want the build to last or run it 24/7 as a server.
Will do, and thanks for the info.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaosLegionnaire View Post
yea asus' mid and high end mobos came with that. asus' marketing nomenclature for it is "q-connector". see attached image of it from the manual of one of my asus mobos.

of course, it only works on asus mobos since their boards all have the same pinout for the different front panel connectors, tho u can try it on other brand motherboards if the pin positioning is similar or the same but different pinout function for each pin so beware of the differing pinout and connect it appropriately. dont fry anything!
It looks to be pinned out the same for the KFN5-D as it was for the P5N.
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Old 12-06-2021, 05:52 PM   #7
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Case washing time!! The frame was too big for the sink, it had to be done outside.....not a big deal until you realize it was 36*...

...but I got it done!!




Front & top.



Now for the fun of the 140mm fans. I got a big box full of these (probably 50 of them) from some R2 reseller for about $15 shipped. Cheap most likely because not many cases can use them....probably not a lot of demand.







Mounted in the ceiling of the case.



One upside, they have lots of wire length; a good 30"!! This made for wonderful cable management abilities!





The left side panel can also take 2 of these.





...and one more in the floor of the case...



One of the existing 120mm fans in the front; cleaned of course.



Now we start to get somewhere! Motherboard mounted.







...and some of the cable management mentioned above...







Top of the case reinstalled.



...and what's instore for tomorrow...



This case was definitely designed for good clean cable management. There were big looms mounted AFT of the motherboard on the tray. This motherboard is longer, and would not allow them to be used; I had to remove them...however, there's a good 3/8" under the motherboard tray between the right side panel, along with tiedowns and galleys....so it will still look marvelous when I'm done. Tomorrow is the power supply rework and whatever else I feel like doing.
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Old 12-06-2021, 09:57 PM   #8
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
but its fried and in the scrap bin.
yea thats typical of nvidia chipsets. runs hot, shoddy manufacturing (bumpgate scandal) and doesnt last long as a result. any idea when it died and how long it lasted? 13 years is already a very long lifespan for a nvidia shitset board.

of course, the psu is suspect also for helping to kill the board if it has junk caps when topcat cracks it open tomorrow. pics of the internals of the psu please? if u ever decide to crack it open...

EDIT: i added more info on how to install and use the asus q-connector from the mobo manual of one of my asus mobos since its cool looking stuff.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg asus q-connector 2-34.jpg (64.2 KB, 13 views)

Last edited by ChaosLegionnaire; 12-06-2021 at 10:38 PM.. Reason: added more q-connector info
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Old 12-06-2021, 11:23 PM   #9
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Originally Posted by ChaosLegionnaire View Post
yea thats typical of nvidia chipsets. runs hot, shoddy manufacturing (bumpgate scandal) and doesnt last long as a result. any idea when it died and how long it lasted? 13 years is already a very long lifespan for a nvidia shitset board.
It was dead when I got it...and I've had it over a year. I noticed the onboard NIC was taped off labeled 'bad'....dead ringer for a dying nvidia chipset.

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of course, the psu is suspect also for helping to kill the board if it has junk caps when topcat cracks it open tomorrow. pics of the internals of the psu please? if u ever decide to crack it open...
I will take some pics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaosLegionnaire View Post
EDIT: i added more info on how to install and use the asus q-connector from the mobo manual of one of my asus mobos since its cool looking stuff.
Yea, seeing how it connected, its purpose was pretty self explanatory. Clever of them though, I have never seen one before.
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Old 12-07-2021, 10:36 AM   #10
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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The 200 series was released in June '08.
So 2008 is the year of overlaps? LOL

That year, had the 9800GT not long before that, just like we had both Conroe, Kentsfield, Wolfdale and Yorkfield for Core 2 CPUs. (both 65nm and 45nm)
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Old 12-07-2021, 12:21 PM   #11
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Honestly, I'd put the 560Ti cards in there. Far more useful long term:

https://www.videocardbenchmark.net/c...X-285/18vs1444

Wonder about that TR2. Those seemed to be really really popular at the time.

Speaking of Thermaltake power supplies... just scored a brand new "Smart 500W 80Plus" for $20 sealed in the package. Popped it apart and put in a red RGB fan to fit the theme I'm going for in my build. Found a bunch of horrible Chinese caps LOL. I think this is some ancient platform from who knows where but I don't think it's CWT? Oh well, I'm running the fan I put in at full blast 12V so it should be fine!
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Old 12-07-2021, 10:19 PM   #12
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Speaking of Thermaltake power supplies... just scored a brand new "Smart 500W 80Plus" for $20 sealed in the package. Popped it apart and put in a red RGB fan to fit the theme I'm going for in my build. Found a bunch of horrible Chinese caps LOL. I think this is some ancient platform from who knows where but I don't think it's CWT? Oh well, I'm running the fan I put in at full blast 12V so it should be fine!
Every Thermaltake PSU I've personally seen has been disappointing at best. I stand to be corrected though.
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Old 12-07-2021, 10:27 PM   #13
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

.....and here goes the PSU....



Cracked open.



Secondary full of Teapo and Sa'con.



Quick peek at the outputs with the scope prior to recapping...



Ch.A (top) is the 12v rail, Ch.B (bottom) is the 5v. Uniform across both rails, not horrible....but not great.



....and here we go!







I didn't have any 2200uF 16v KZE or KZH in a 10mm diameter, only 12.5....which would not fit...so I used Rubycon PX. Acceptable choice for this, but not my preferred.





Time to probe it again....



A little improvement.



The old caps.... The teapos capacitance was in spec, ESR was reading a little out (high), but not alarmingly so. THe only ones that were way out were 3 of 3 220uF 16v Sa'con. They were reading half their rated capacitance.



Now for the acid test!!



It POST'd!



So far so good booting Hiren's.



...and here's she is, viewing her own thread on herself!



Now to finish assembly. Had to pick HDD's....and there's a pair of 1tb WD Blacks.



Cabling tied up and right side panel installed...



Getting closer!





GPU's installed.





Stick-on holders on the left side panel; keep the wiring out of the fans.



...and installing Win7... I thought about XP64, it would scream on this...but so will 7!



That's as far as I got....it was dinnertime by the time I got done installing 7.....I didn't get a chance to install any drivers or abuse anything. This is a power-hungry beast, it will definitely be a good test of mettle for this power supply! I may also tinker around with the other GPU's as well....but those are way too new for this core hardware to be deemed period-specific. I did have to steal a SLI bridge from another build....I knew this build was coming and ordered a few early last week....but welcome to the USPS in December...they're already 4 days overdue....but the completion tomorrow!
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Old 12-08-2021, 02:55 AM   #14
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Every Thermaltake PSU I've personally seen has been disappointing at best. I stand to be corrected though.
QFT, mostly! That's why I removed one from a Ryzen system built by someone else. In, went a Corsair TX 850M, IIRC. The same one that I was using for my socket 1366 powerhouse PC in the very-late-2010s.
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Old 12-08-2021, 03:02 AM   #15
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Originally Posted by Topcat View Post

The old caps.... The teapos capacitance was in spec, ESR was reading a little out (high), but not alarmingly so. THe only ones that were way out were 3 of 3 220uF 16v Sa'con. They were reading half their rated capacitance.
I saw "Su'scon", which were around in goods before the dreaded "Sacon" caps found in some Soyo motherboards. Is "Su'scon" the same company? WTF?!

Last edited by RJARRRPCGP; 12-08-2021 at 03:05 AM..
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Old 12-08-2021, 01:43 PM   #16
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

Su'scon and Sacon are different companies.

That reminds me that I should recap the power supply in my old Compaq some day. It squeals during disk activity for about 30 seconds while Windows boots (or maybe it's the drive itself), and it's full of Su'scon.
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Old 12-08-2021, 01:49 PM   #17
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Su'scon and Sacon are different companies.
Both are junk....so yea....pick one.

The PSU is holding up...but you can tell when its got a load on it....its got a bit of coil whine....
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Old 12-08-2021, 06:50 PM   #18
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

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Su'scon and Sacon are different companies.
That was what I have been thinking. At least, they seem to last long in stereos. Had one from the very-late-1990s with them and the sub woofer was also still sounding OK.

It's a stereo receiver and set that I don't have anymore, because it got left behind, just like the CRTs, 5 years ago.
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Old 12-12-2021, 03:35 AM   #19
ChaosLegionnaire
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

the only thing i've ever liked about thermaltake psus is the fan delay cool feature. some of their psus have it and it works by running the psu fan for 1 minute even after power off. it helps to cool the system down if u power it off immediately after heavy load. without such a feaure, the system temp could increase by a few degrees for a few mins after power off and might cause overheating if u run the system close to its thermal limits.

its a cool feature but i learnt how to leave the system idling for several minutes to cool off after heavy load before shutting it down. so the fan delay cool function on thermaltake psus is not really critical for me now. good caps are more important!

and as for sacon (suck on) caps, yea, momaka really hates those. he has recapped tons of video cards with vented suckons, so much so that the paper roll in the cap is flying out of it. not sure if u still remember the pictures he posted. lol!
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Old 12-12-2021, 11:37 AM   #20
Topcat
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Default Re: Asus KFN5-D SLI Kinda Retro-ish Rescue / Build

I did finish this the other day....I just didn't take any more pics....there wasn't anything to show that hasn't already been. Under loads, the PSU was groaning a bit but it remained stable. The nvidia driver crashed/recovered a couple times inexplicably with both the GTX285's and the GTX560ti's. The seat of my pants tells me it was the PSU, but the frequency wasn't high enough to get overly excited....and only under higher graphics loads (games & benchmarking). I'd swap out the PSU, but I don't have any others here strong enough to take on the loads of this power sucking system...so I'm calling it done for now until I come across a better one.
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