Reusing an old ATX Case from 96?

Hi all,

I've tried searching but haven't been able to get a real clear answer--basically, I have some time to kill and thought about rebuilding a computer using an old Full-Tower ATX case from 1996 that my bro' in law bought from Gateway (it was a Pentium 133, talk about nostalgia). I recently found the system and decided that instead of sending it straight to the landfill, I'd try replacing every component in the ATX case and reusing the case for a new computer for my son.

Here're my questions:
1) Can I just buy things like plastic risers and I/O faceplates apart from buying a whole case?
2) Will my new x48 mobo fit into this old Full-Tower "ATX" case from '96?
3) Will my new 1000W PSU fit into this old case?

I realize that "bang for the buck", it's more economical to simply put down $150 for a new Mid-Tower or Full-Tower case; but I have some time and wanted to see if I can rescue it.

And of course, I'm even planning my trip down to "Home Depot" to cut out tiny squares for the fans that I'll need to put in...

Any thoughts, suggestions would certainly be appreciated...

Many thanks!

4 answers Last reply
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  1. Yes you can. I bought a a server case that was built in 95 and it had a 286 mobo that was about 2'x2'. With a little elbow grease I was able to fit a mini ATX and a ATX mobo along with 2 power supplies. And since neither mobo would screw in anywhere I Just used some particle board and attached the mobos directly to the case. I've also used a rubbermade box and a cardboard box for a cases before. My only concern is the 1000w PS normally they are bigger then standard power supplies so you should make some measurements first. And what are the rest of the specs being that the PC will need 1000 watts.
  2. For the PSU, use a tape measure and measure it.
    As to the usefulness of this case, look at pics of full ATX cases, and compare them with what you have. is a great place to look at pictures of full tower cases.

    Plastic Risers: Tell us about this cases plastic Risers.
  3. plastic risers = stand offs, the old IO plate should pounch out and you can attach another one. The only thing you could potentially have a problem with is the power switch and possibly hte reset switch and power/hd leds. Back in the day, the power switch was a physical SPST switch that was attached to the power supply, you may need to swap that out and put in a momentary contact switch. The reset switch hasn't really changed, the connector should fit, but OEM r known to have proprietary stuff, same go for LEDs, should work but may have proprietary connectors. Wish you luck in your venture. everything should work though.
  4. "Plastic Risers" can also be of a proprietary nature, I had an IBM that used a "Plastic Riser" to plug in the ISA and PCI boards this was a second board that was connected to the motherboard by a "Plastic Riser".

    I say again compare the case you have with case pictures from, or take it to a local computer shop, and ask.

    Oh and I/O (faceplates) shields come with the motherboard when new.
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