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Old 03-17-2022, 08:24 PM   #61
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Ok, just a little addendum to the Gateway P4 build.....

About ~15yrs ago (yea, really), I was given an Abit IC7 Max3 that didn't work that had a CPU & RAM in it. The board was still under warranty from Abit, so I RMA'd it and they sent me a brand spankin new one in the box. I sold it on ebay, as new/unused. I don't remember whatever happened to the CPU or RAM....but one thing that was left over that I forgot about as well made a reappearance in the world last month when I was trashing some stuff in the attic.... It's in the form of a massive Zalman SKT478 cooler. I always called it 'the copper flower'....thats what it always reminded me of. It's very heavy; I always wondered how that little plastic bracket could hold it....

I was going to use it in THIS BUILD, but it would not clear the VRM or the RAM....however, I got to thinking of what other P4 system I had around here I could use this on....and well...yea! It fit this one like a glove!!









This is just a nifty old build for a 'big box' system!

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Old 03-24-2022, 04:26 PM   #62
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

I tinkered around with the Gateway FX6831-03 I was given; posted in the Cheap/Free Scores thread... I wanted to see what it could do and see if it was going to be a solid runner.

I did a quick test when I first got it, seemed fine....but I noticed most everything was unplugged from the power supply inside it. I'm guessing the original went bad and someone installed this one; perhaps just to get it running well enough to recover data...not real sure....the wires were a rat's nest and all the hardware except the power supply is original....and I don't see Gateway shipping it looking like that....but I'll get back to this in a few....bear in mind, this isn't the finish build....it was just some experimenting....so ignore the rat's nest of wires....

The only functional issue I noticed was the GPU fan was making all kinds of racket, so that had to be addressed.....

Disassembled....a bazillion screws later!



Thermal paste wasn't terrible....but it wasn't good either...



Now for the fan....caked bad with dust, so my guess was it was horribly out of balance....likely a contributing factor for a lot of the racket it was making.



I hate the way these fans come apart.....internal pressure snap/clasp....and prying on them always makes me nervous!! ...but I didn't break it!



Cleaned off the GPU die and sink.



Fan washed, repacked with grease, some fresh AS5, and everything reassembled.





Funny, according to M$, this GPU I just wasted an hour on is the slowest thing in the system (Radeon HD5850)....it is now quiet as a mouse though...



Now back to all the stuff unplugged from power; both opticals were unplugged, the HDD was missing (so obviously unplugged) and there was a strange looking board up in the ceiling of the case that I didn't recognize, with a bunch of other wires coming out of it going to various places in the case....hmmmm...I have a hunch what it might be, but lets plug it in and see....

Sure enough, just as I suspected....lighting!







Some mild red LED lighting.... Pretty tastefully done I must say, not overdone. I still lol at 'SuperComputer' being on the case badge from Gateway....but I bet that lighting increases the FPS by atleast 2.77 FPS in any game just because of the cool points!!
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Old 03-25-2022, 06:55 AM   #63
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

My dad has one of these systems. The board at the top of the case also connects up the USB ports on the case and the headphone jacks.
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Old 03-25-2022, 08:37 AM   #64
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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The board at the top of the case also connects up the USB ports on the case and the headphone jacks.
The USB/FPAUDIO board and the lighting control board are two separate boards, unless he's got a different model....there were a few revisions of this system.
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Old 03-27-2022, 08:41 PM   #65
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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The USB/FPAUDIO board and the lighting control board are two separate boards, unless he's got a different model....there were a few revisions of this system.
Oh ok. I may be (mis)-remembering. It's been a while since I last had the case open, and it got mothballed several months ago when I moved the guts to my old main workstation system's case to cure a heat-related issue that caused the system to eat hard drives (after it ate a 3TB Seagate and 2x 2TB WD Black drives). It's also an early-2010 system.
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Old 03-27-2022, 09:27 PM   #66
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Just a goofy one....I wasn't going to waste any bandwidth posting this one, there's a lot of weird little builds that I simply don't post about....but someone expressed that the board in this one be sent to e-waste heaven!! I did it before the suggestion.....but here it is....A HP Pavilion 515x with a complete craptastic board in it.... No AGP but has a blank, celeron D @ forgotWTFspeedit was....and who cares about the rest.....but the system was complete.....so hmmmm...





I have an Asus P5KPL-AM SE that I have no clue where it came from, I'm sure it was a dropoff in a scrap case, but I kept the board. It has a Pentium-D @ 3GHz w/ 4mb L2, 2gb RAM, and a GeForce 7300GT 256mb GPU. Now that will go nice in this case! I know, not the greatest GPU, but for this, it's perfect!





The old turd....



The little shorty PSU. This one was a Delta, and good. I did recap it....just didn't take any pics.



Installed.



160gb SATA Velociraptor.



Much cleaner look!



Begging for XP!



...even a little Q3A!!



Yea, I know....lame build.....but I couldn't scrap one this complete on account of a junktastic useless system core.
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Old 03-28-2022, 02:41 AM   #67
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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Just a goofy one....
Dang that is one ugly monitor! "Something only a mother could love"
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Old 03-31-2022, 09:06 PM   #68
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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Dang that is one ugly monitor! "Something only a mother could love"


Resolutions arent great either, will do 1280x960 or 1280x1024 @ 60Hz refresh....ick. 1024x768 @ 80Hz refresh....no flicker, but eww.....
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Old 04-01-2022, 11:35 AM   #69
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Resolutions arent great either, will do 1280x960 or 1280x1024 @ 60Hz refresh....ick. 1024x768 @ 80Hz refresh....no flicker, but eww.....
You're the one that got rid of the FD Trinitron... which I do still use as my Garage bench (Main w/ KVM) monitor...
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Old 04-01-2022, 12:40 PM   #70
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You're the one that got rid of the FD Trinitron... which I do still use as my Garage bench (Main w/ KVM) monitor...
Ohh believe me, it's all good; given the girth of that thing! Glad you're using it!
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Old 04-07-2022, 04:27 PM   #71
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Ok, just a little addendum to the Gateway P4 build.....
Ok, one more addendum to this build..... The fella that gave it to me came by today and said the speakers turned up!





It is now officially complete!
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Old 04-08-2022, 05:26 AM   #72
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Something else that I'd figure that I'd mention:

Back around 2002, my mom bought a fully loaded Gateway computer (Pentium 4 HT, AGP ATi GPU of some sorts, 80GB or 160GB WD Caviar Black IDE HDD ($$$!), and I think ~1GB of RAM.) Talk about a pretty penny.
Anyways, it ran for 10 faithful years until a presumed power supply failure ate the motherboard, and it never ran again. I don't remember what PSU it had, but given that it went down with a power failure and never came up again, it could have possibly been one of those infamous Bestec ATX-250-12E PSUs with the 2-transistor 5VSB that relied on a capacitor for voltage regulation. (Not to be confused with the ATX-250-12Z which fixed this problem.)
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Old 04-08-2022, 10:41 PM   #73
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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Something else that I'd figure that I'd mention:

Back around 2002, my mom bought a fully loaded Gateway computer (Pentium 4 HT, AGP ATi GPU of some sorts, 80GB or 160GB WD Caviar Black IDE HDD ($$$!), and I think ~1GB of RAM.) Talk about a pretty penny.
Anyways, it ran for 10 faithful years until a presumed power supply failure ate the motherboard, and it never ran again. I don't remember what PSU it had, but given that it went down with a power failure and never came up again, it could have possibly been one of those infamous Bestec ATX-250-12E PSUs with the 2-transistor 5VSB that relied on a capacitor for voltage regulation. (Not to be confused with the ATX-250-12Z which fixed this problem.)
I'd hate to know what this system cost new. The GPU & audio upgrades were from gateway, not customer upgrades; he bought it this way. The motherboard has onboard audio, but its blocked off by the sticker spanning the entire IO area....kind of a weird way of doing that....definitely not something a customer would have done....a view of it:

https://www.badcaps.net/forum/attach...1&d=1645674848

I really think the case sets it off; alienware clone that so many manufactures were doing at the time. With the exception of the GPU, the system isn't too terribly valuable....but a nice addition to the collection all the same!
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Old 04-09-2022, 08:00 AM   #74
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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I'd hate to know what this system cost new. The GPU & audio upgrades were from gateway, not customer upgrades; he bought it this way. The motherboard has onboard audio, but its blocked off by the sticker spanning the entire IO area....kind of a weird way of doing that....definitely not something a customer would have done....a view of it:

https://www.badcaps.net/forum/attach...1&d=1645674848

I really think the case sets it off; alienware clone that so many manufactures were doing at the time. With the exception of the GPU, the system isn't too terribly valuable....but a nice addition to the collection all the same!

The case on my mom's Gateway wasn't anything like that one. It was an older design. I can't remember if it had a sound card added (it's been ~10 years since that system got recycled). Cost? IIRC, it was somewhere around $2500 or so.
EDIT: Found what it was. Looks like a Gateway 510XL or 510SE.

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Old 04-13-2022, 10:27 PM   #75
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

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It's in the form of a massive Zalman SKT478 cooler. I always called it 'the copper flower'....thats what it always reminded me of. It's very heavy;
just to add a name to that cooler so people can find it and get it if they like it and wanna use it also, that is the zalman cnps7700-cu cpu cooler. there is also an al-cu hybrid aluminum copper version of that cooler as well. frostytech still has a review of the zalman cnps7700-cu heatsink here.

the copper version is 918 grams which is nearly 1 kg. thats also slightly over 2 pounds for those still using imperial units. definitely a hefty cooler indeed!
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Old 04-20-2022, 11:52 PM   #76
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just to add a name to that cooler so people can find it and get it if they like it and wanna use it also, that is the zalman cnps7700-cu cpu cooler. there is also an al-cu hybrid aluminum copper version of that cooler as well. frostytech still has a review of the zalman cnps7700-cu heatsink here.

the copper version is 918 grams which is nearly 1 kg. thats also slightly over 2 pounds for those still using imperial units. definitely a hefty cooler indeed!
Yea, that's the one. This one is all copper....and ~2lbs feels about right. It works well though.
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Old 05-02-2022, 09:34 PM   #77
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Today's weird one comes in the form of some old HP Pentium-D system with a board full of bad caps..... Not really worth the effort to recap....but the case is immaculate.....good for a mild sleeper. There were several different config's tested with this one, but I'm not going to dwell on that, just post the final config and outcome.

I don't even remember what model this was....



The bad board:



Enter in the new board a Pegatron IMPTB-TK "Truckee" out of some HP workstation, I don't know where it came from....I've had it for years.



The power supply removed from the case.... Yikes! Not reusing this thing...flimsy body and weighs less than a couple slices of bread. Looks to be a deer or L & C, but never heard of the 'OKIA' brand.



Case emptied out.



The Pegatron board installed.



128gb Sandisk SSD.



Replacement PSU is an Antec 650w, recapped of course.





Now here's where it gets fun! The board has two 16x PCIe slots....so I did some homework....but all claims state it absolutely does not support SLI or crossfire.....ohh lets just see about that!!

The SLI test was indeed a failure....however, the crossfire test was a success! I won an auction (high bid of $11) for an identical HD5850 to go along with THIS ONE that I swiped from my FX6831-03. Don't worry, I have a replacement for the FX6831, but that's for later on....but now I have a matching pair of HD5850's for the test!!



Every rear slot filled with GPU action!



Incase you were wondering what CPU is in this, it's a Xeon W3580 @ 3.33GHz. CPU-Z says it's a Bloomfield, but the S-Spec says Nehalem.....but it's running @ the correct speeds and all instruction sets are present. Yes, the board has the latest BIOS on it. This board will not run a Westmere. There's 12gb RAM.



The results:







It's not a bad system at all and was fun doing the tinkering with..... No official crossfire support, but it will do it. I've seen this on many board with multiple 16x slots... I guess AMD figured if you could afford the two cards and a board with 2 slots, you didn't need any hardware licenses embedded in the motherboard to run like this; like nvidia and SLI.... The single HD5850 scored a '6.0', and '7.7' in crossfire according to the insignificant windows assessment....
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Old 05-21-2022, 11:12 PM   #78
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Forgive me computer gods, for I have sinned....but keep in mind, this was done to mock someone that bragged about spending $100 on RGB fans & lighting! I found that to be absurd. My 'mock' cost less than $10. The point of this post isn't the build itself, it's one I did many years ago but just never posted about.....but it was a good lab rat for this because of the Antec DF-30 case....which had LED fans and the window.... This was a stellar system in its day.....but was 'expendable' enough to do this to:

The 'specimen':

Antec DF-30 tower in mint condition
Asus KFN5-D workstation board
2x Barcelona core Opteron 2360SE @ 2.5GHz (max it can take)
64gb PC2-5300E
2x Quadro 4000 2gb in SLI
2x 160 Velociraptors in a RAID0



Momaka is going to disown BCN over this one!! Red & Blue 12v LED tape. The stock Antec fans have blue, so I went with more blue, and some red to create a little contrast.





Now time to start attaching things....







Yea, there's enough clearance under the PSU!!



Test fired using the bench supply.









All this pulls about ~900mA



Tying it all together & hiding wiring.





Sides reinstalled.





Live test! This is hard to photograph. In person, the light is a lot more crisp....but you get the idea...













With the case closed, at no angle looking in the window can you actually see any of the LED's; which is critical for making this look half way decent....for as ricey & ghetto as it already looks!! Yes, this project aggravated the 'intended target' (not a member here). I spent $10 shipped for the two 10' reels of LED tape, and I used very little....maybe 3 feet combined, so at $0.50 per foot it cost ~$1.50 compared to his ridiculous $100....but here's where the sin mentioned in the opening paragraph came into play...I actually enjoyed this!!!
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Old 05-22-2022, 08:07 PM   #79
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Well this was critiqued today by none other than my 24yr old daughter who said it looked awesome, but the blue was a bit overbearing. Add a little more red if you can....so I pondered....and pondered....and didn't come up with much until I inadvertently realized there was a plastic air guide on top of the CPU heatsinks that basically allowed a 70mm fan to be used on a sink intended for 60mm.... THis raised the fan off the sink a good 30mm; leaving plenty of room between the fan & sink.....and BAM!! The light bulb...err, LED lit up!

I had to be a little careful with these plastic risers....with age, they're a little brittle....but I didn't break them.....but here we go!



One segment of LED.



Attached to the fan, note the orientation....I arranged them both so they'll be horizontal when mounted in their holders....even though each fan is clocked differently due to the location of their power connectors.



Tested; not bad.



Plenty of room for exit routing the wire in the fan's power wire channel.



Now for the other side, and you can see the difference in the LED orientation from the other one.



Bench supply test, no problem!



Now to wire them into power....and the reason I used such long wires... I routed these down to the lower right corner where the unused 4-pin +12v connector was tied out of the way (the board uses the larger 8-pin). I then stole the 4-pin connector off a junk motehrboard.



Soldered & heatshrunk.



Now that Gentlemen is how we do that!!



...and now the real test...and again bear in mind that these pics look like shit.....I guess I don't know the secret to correctly photograph something like this with no flash....







That solved the overwhelmingly blue issue!
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Old 05-23-2022, 11:32 AM   #80
Per Hansson
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Default Re: Topcat's Other Misc Weird Build Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
...and now the real test...and again bear in mind that these pics look like shit.....I guess I don't know the secret to correctly photograph something like this with no flash....
You know there is supposed to be no funding limit for your photography passion right?
Just go out a buy any of the Sigma DP range of compact DSLR's, they have some amazing tech to resolve complex light situations.
Just don't blame me when you find out it is useless for anything else bar that though
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