Replace Power Transformer?

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair amount of
crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend told
me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.

In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power transformer?

What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to ask for
at a shop)?

About how much should the transformer cost?

Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this on my
own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy and
have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)

What's a good place to buy a transformer?

Might E-bay have these transformers?

Thanks in advance.
12 answers Last reply
More about replace power transformer
  1. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    If your machine is one of the flex cases (very small only one cdrom bay and
    a floppy bay externally), look inside the machine at the motherboard. Look
    at the capacitors (small and cylindrical) and check the tops of them for
    bulging and leaking. If they are, you either need a new motherboard or you
    need to have someone replace the capacitors.


    "Caroline" <caroline10027remove@earthlink.net> wrote in message
    news:Nwbkc.14284$eZ5.12066@newsread1.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    >I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair
    >amount of
    > crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend
    > told
    > me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.
    >
    > In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power
    > transformer?
    >
    > What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to
    > ask for
    > at a shop)?
    >
    > About how much should the transformer cost?
    >
    > Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this
    > on my
    > own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy
    > and
    > have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)
    >
    > What's a good place to buy a transformer?
    >
    > Might E-bay have these transformers?
    >
    > Thanks in advance.
    >
    >
  2. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    Caroline,

    The power supply may be one cause of system crashes, especially if the wattage
    rating is low, 145w or less. But there are a myriad of other causes including
    insufficient system memory, corrupted software, and on and on.

    The power supply need not be a Gateway branded item. Gateway uses mostly
    off-the-shelf standard form factor parts. However, power supplies have gotten
    tricky over the years as manufacturers have "standardized" on 4 or 5 different
    ones with varying sizes and screw hole patterns... Ben Myers

    On Thu, 29 Apr 2004 18:08:45 GMT, "Caroline" <caroline10027remove@earthlink.net>
    wrote:

    >I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair amount of
    >crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend told
    >me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.
    >
    >In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power transformer?
    >
    >What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to ask for
    >at a shop)?
    >
    >About how much should the transformer cost?
    >
    >Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this on my
    >own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy and
    >have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)
    >
    >What's a good place to buy a transformer?
    >
    >Might E-bay have these transformers?
    >
    >Thanks in advance.
    >
    >
  3. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    Thanks, Ben. I understand the causes of my computer's problems may be myriad.

    I'm inclined to try a changeout of the power supply, as I think the part will
    run me under $50, and I just found out from the Gateway site that it's a 90-Watt
    unit, specifically model # ATX90-3405. I now know what it looks like and
    understand any replacement I buy has to physically fit as well as be
    electrically appropriate.

    My main question now is what my upper limit on wattage is. I figure more is
    better, in general.

    Feel free to comment.


    <ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
    news:409143ff.22595200@news.charter.net...
    > Caroline,
    >
    > The power supply may be one cause of system crashes, especially if the wattage
    > rating is low, 145w or less. But there are a myriad of other causes including
    > insufficient system memory, corrupted software, and on and on.
    >
    > The power supply need not be a Gateway branded item. Gateway uses mostly
    > off-the-shelf standard form factor parts. However, power supplies have gotten
    > tricky over the years as manufacturers have "standardized" on 4 or 5 different
    > ones with varying sizes and screw hole patterns... Ben Myers
    >
    > On Thu, 29 Apr 2004 18:08:45 GMT, "Caroline"
    <caroline10027remove@earthlink.net>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair amount
    of
    > >crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend
    told
    > >me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.
    > >
    > >In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power
    transformer?
    > >
    > >What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to ask
    for
    > >at a shop)?
    > >
    > >About how much should the transformer cost?
    > >
    > >Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this on
    my
    > >own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy and
    > >have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)
    > >
    > >What's a good place to buy a transformer?
    > >
    > >Might E-bay have these transformers?
    > >
    > >Thanks in advance.
    > >
    > >
    >
  4. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    Although electrolytic capacitors in all consumer equipment have caused
    a lot of trouble in recent years, the motherboards with known and
    chronic problems with its electrolytics were the "Corfu" and "Corfu
    II" boards. GW knew about the problems in early 2002 and never did
    make it known.

    Look for bulging, leaking, misshapen or swollen caps. They are
    standard through-hole parts and can be replaced by anyone who knows
    what they are doing, but most computer shops do not do component
    repair and TV shops usually get really mulish when asked to work on
    anything but TVs. It can be done with a temp-controlled iron and
    solderwick but a Pace tool is preferred. Replacement caps are
    available from Digi-Key or other regular electronic suppliers.

    Computer power supplies do not use transformers but are what are
    called "switch-mode" supplies. If the voltages are approximately
    correct and there are no obvious intermittents power supplies usually
    are _not_ the problem, usually a unit inside the case is pulling one
    line or another low or the power supply to the computer is
    intermittent or sags. A regular old incandescent light can tell you a
    lot if used right.

    The 90-watt supply used in the NLX/LTX form factor case is usually
    adequate "and then some". NDF (no defect found) rates on Power
    Supplies were consistently in the 50-70% range when I was involved
    with GW. A little of this was probably due to insufficiently rigorous
    testing of returned supplies, but not much. The only good way to test
    switchmode supplies is to cycle them through their entire operating
    envelope of permissible currents on each line while watching for noise
    and monitoring input current-at maximum, minimum and bogey input
    voltages. I was never able to see Gateway's parts testing but my
    understanding is they just put them in a computer and checked to see
    if they "worked or not".

    Most of the techs at GW and in the rest of the PC business have what
    I call the hobby-shop mentality. They reject all but ATX machines
    "because of the versatility" of expansion, knowing full well no one
    ever does use this "versatility". I like the small form factor
    machine, provided it is well-built, Apple's old Mac LCs, and the HP,
    Sun, DEC, and SGI Indys were all great boxes as were the single-board
    in the keyboard PCs we had at a former employer running a Citrix front
    end for a Unix GIS. So the small box isn't the problem. It's a
    well-made small box you want.
  5. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    Caroline,

    The more wattage the better. 90w is definitely anemic. You can probably find a
    higher wattage power supply as a non-Gateway item. The important things are the
    size and shape and screw hole mounts. But 145w, 185w, and 200w are now common
    in the smaller sized power supplies.

    I'm fairly sure that the power supply was made for Gateway by Astec, long a
    producer of good quality power supplies. But the 90w was Gateway's idea to save
    maybe less than one dollar in the cost of manufacturing the Essential... Ben
    Myers

    On Thu, 29 Apr 2004 18:45:48 GMT, "Caroline" <caroline10027remove@earthlink.net>
    wrote:

    >Thanks, Ben. I understand the causes of my computer's problems may be myriad.
    >
    >I'm inclined to try a changeout of the power supply, as I think the part will
    >run me under $50, and I just found out from the Gateway site that it's a 90-Watt
    >unit, specifically model # ATX90-3405. I now know what it looks like and
    >understand any replacement I buy has to physically fit as well as be
    >electrically appropriate.
    >
    >My main question now is what my upper limit on wattage is. I figure more is
    >better, in general.
    >
    >Feel free to comment.
    >
    >
    ><ben_myers_spam_me_not @ charter.net (Ben Myers)> wrote in message
    >news:409143ff.22595200@news.charter.net...
    >> Caroline,
    >>
    >> The power supply may be one cause of system crashes, especially if the wattage
    >> rating is low, 145w or less. But there are a myriad of other causes including
    >> insufficient system memory, corrupted software, and on and on.
    >>
    >> The power supply need not be a Gateway branded item. Gateway uses mostly
    >> off-the-shelf standard form factor parts. However, power supplies have gotten
    >> tricky over the years as manufacturers have "standardized" on 4 or 5 different
    >> ones with varying sizes and screw hole patterns... Ben Myers
    >>
    >> On Thu, 29 Apr 2004 18:08:45 GMT, "Caroline"
    ><caroline10027remove@earthlink.net>
    >> wrote:
    >>
    >> >I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair amount
    >of
    >> >crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend
    >told
    >> >me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.
    >> >
    >> >In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power
    >transformer?
    >> >
    >> >What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to ask
    >for
    >> >at a shop)?
    >> >
    >> >About how much should the transformer cost?
    >> >
    >> >Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this on
    >my
    >> >own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy and
    >> >have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)
    >> >
    >> >What's a good place to buy a transformer?
    >> >
    >> >Might E-bay have these transformers?
    >> >
    >> >Thanks in advance.
    >> >
    >> >
    >>
    >
    >
  6. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    When I was at Gateway, the Oxnard Athlon board and the Brookings Flex ATX
    board were the ones that we replaced the most for the capacitor issue. Both
    boards were made by MSI. We replaced several Oxnard boards a week. I only
    saw the Corfu problem once, when a school district brought in 20 of them. We
    also replaced a lot of those 90 watt power supplies in the flex case. The
    problem was a failed fan most of the time.

    "Jim-Ed Browne" <jimedbrowne@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:65228e33.0404291746.2afa3b0f@posting.google.com...
    > Although electrolytic capacitors in all consumer equipment have caused
    > a lot of trouble in recent years, the motherboards with known and
    > chronic problems with its electrolytics were the "Corfu" and "Corfu
    > II" boards. GW knew about the problems in early 2002 and never did
    > make it known.
    >
    > Look for bulging, leaking, misshapen or swollen caps. They are
    > standard through-hole parts and can be replaced by anyone who knows
    > what they are doing, but most computer shops do not do component
    > repair and TV shops usually get really mulish when asked to work on
    > anything but TVs. It can be done with a temp-controlled iron and
    > solderwick but a Pace tool is preferred. Replacement caps are
    > available from Digi-Key or other regular electronic suppliers.
    >
    > Computer power supplies do not use transformers but are what are
    > called "switch-mode" supplies. If the voltages are approximately
    > correct and there are no obvious intermittents power supplies usually
    > are _not_ the problem, usually a unit inside the case is pulling one
    > line or another low or the power supply to the computer is
    > intermittent or sags. A regular old incandescent light can tell you a
    > lot if used right.
    >
    > The 90-watt supply used in the NLX/LTX form factor case is usually
    > adequate "and then some". NDF (no defect found) rates on Power
    > Supplies were consistently in the 50-70% range when I was involved
    > with GW. A little of this was probably due to insufficiently rigorous
    > testing of returned supplies, but not much. The only good way to test
    > switchmode supplies is to cycle them through their entire operating
    > envelope of permissible currents on each line while watching for noise
    > and monitoring input current-at maximum, minimum and bogey input
    > voltages. I was never able to see Gateway's parts testing but my
    > understanding is they just put them in a computer and checked to see
    > if they "worked or not".
    >
    > Most of the techs at GW and in the rest of the PC business have what
    > I call the hobby-shop mentality. They reject all but ATX machines
    > "because of the versatility" of expansion, knowing full well no one
    > ever does use this "versatility". I like the small form factor
    > machine, provided it is well-built, Apple's old Mac LCs, and the HP,
    > Sun, DEC, and SGI Indys were all great boxes as were the single-board
    > in the keyboard PCs we had at a former employer running a Citrix front
    > end for a Unix GIS. So the small box isn't the problem. It's a
    > well-made small box you want.
  7. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    The part about the school district having 20 was common-these E-series
    usually were sold in groups. Ditto the fan on the 90-watter-actually,
    the fan in most power supplies is easily replaced if you catch it
    before it cooks. I remember this well. It was a big pain in the ass
    because our Siebel was configured to only allow Quantity 1 on line
    items. You had to cut and paste 40 times-20 sends and 20 receives.
    When Siebel started f^&*ing up routinely-they outsourced the back end
    servers to Denver-we had a Outlook form we could use and that
    simplified matters drastically but then you had to annotate that
    service request as there'd be no record otherwise.

    I can't recall replacing a Brookings for capacitor failure
    specifically, but I replaced a whole bunch of them. Most Brookingses
    were in the hands of consumos who didn't know a capacitor from a
    collander.

    My last two weeks or so at the facility I started generating
    imaginary SRs with some pretty creative-never profane, but funny and
    harmless-event texts. My doc percentage went up, not that I cared, but
    I got to do some really creative short story writing.
  8. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    Thanks Jim, Tweek, Ben and Sam.

    Update:

    I inspected the capacitors and none are leaking. Nor do they appear to be
    bulging.

    Without too much difficulty I disconnected and removed the 90-Watt power supply
    and took its dimensions. After some research and leg work, it turns out the big
    trick in replacing it is that it's a "micro" size. CompUSA had a perfect fit 150
    Watt version for $70 at its store; online CompUSA had a $33 (taking into account
    shipping) 145 Watt version.

    Ebay also lists many 145 W and higher Watt versions whose dimensions and screw
    holes appear to fit dead-on, too. Lowest price with shipping = $32 at the
    moment.

    I drove to three independent computer shops and they had nothing that would
    physically fit. Also, they were not optimistic I'd find one locally.

    Again, I don't know if a new power supply will improve my computer's
    performance, but I figure it's worth a try. I cleaned the power supply fan more
    thoroughly than I ever have, so maybe this will help, too.

    I will watch Ebay for a week or so then make a decision.
  9. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    You can get a power supply from www.skyline-eng.com if you don't have any
    luck on ebay.

    "Caroline" <caroline10027remove@earthlink.net> wrote in message
    news:%Vwkc.526$Hs1.462@newsread2.news.pas.earthlink.net...
    > Thanks Jim, Tweek, Ben and Sam.
    >
    > Update:
    >
    > I inspected the capacitors and none are leaking. Nor do they appear to be
    > bulging.
    >
    > Without too much difficulty I disconnected and removed the 90-Watt power
    > supply
    > and took its dimensions. After some research and leg work, it turns out
    > the big
    > trick in replacing it is that it's a "micro" size. CompUSA had a perfect
    > fit 150
    > Watt version for $70 at its store; online CompUSA had a $33 (taking into
    > account
    > shipping) 145 Watt version.
    >
    > Ebay also lists many 145 W and higher Watt versions whose dimensions and
    > screw
    > holes appear to fit dead-on, too. Lowest price with shipping = $32 at the
    > moment.
    >
    > I drove to three independent computer shops and they had nothing that
    > would
    > physically fit. Also, they were not optimistic I'd find one locally.
    >
    > Again, I don't know if a new power supply will improve my computer's
    > performance, but I figure it's worth a try. I cleaned the power supply fan
    > more
    > thoroughly than I ever have, so maybe this will help, too.
    >
    > I will watch Ebay for a week or so then make a decision.
    >
    >
  10. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    On 30 Apr 2004 10:53:27 -0700, samdotbyrams@hotmail.com (Sam Byrams)
    wrote:

    > I can't recall replacing a Brookings for capacitor failure
    >specifically, but I replaced a whole bunch of them. Most Brookingses
    >were in the hands of consumos who didn't know a capacitor from a
    >collander.

    The most common problem was modem failure on the Brookings.


    Albert Alcoceba
    <><
    alberta@REMOVE.ihug.com.au
    http://aussietrains.fotopic.net/
    Remove REMOVE
  11. Anonymous said:
    Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.gateway2000 (More info?)

    I purchased a Gateway Essential 900c in September, 2001. I get a fair amount of
    crashes (freezes; requires shutdown; reboot with scan) with it. A friend told
    me Gateways were notorious for having poor power transformers.

    In others' experience, would it be worthwhile to replace the power transformer?

    What's the identifying information on the transformer (so I know what to ask for
    at a shop)?

    About how much should the transformer cost?

    Where is it located inside the casing? (I'll also start researching this on my
    own. I have had the computer apart for cleaning before. I'm pretty handy and
    have a decent mechanical and electrical background.)

    What's a good place to buy a transformer?

    Might E-bay have these transformers?

    Thanks in advance.
  12. OTDS makes longevity transformers as well as energy source transformers with regards to a lot of several program. Modern-day raise as well as techniques decrease transformer kinds.Substations
Ask a new question

Read More

Gateway Power Computers