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Help Identify Midi Tower Case

Last response: in Systems
December 9, 2008 8:48:16 PM

Please help me to identify this computer case by enlarging the picture to see the significant front panel features.

I am particularly interested in it's front panel connectors as I do not understand some of the text on the end connectors for motherboard.

a b B Homebuilt system
December 9, 2008 9:14:46 PM

Not sure what your looking for, but the case looks pretty generic. You should have a "Power" switch, "Reset" switch, & probably "Speaker" connections on your motherboard. Maybe there is some USB/Audio connections somewhere, but don't see them in the picture. The bottom portion of your picture is usually where the "Manufacturer" name is and usually is just a sticker, so there really isn't any connection there.
* What mobo do you have?
December 9, 2008 9:36:16 PM

I am using this case to test various mobos recovered from community amenity centres.
Currently using some ECS K7S5A's and that is where I want to make sure the front panel connectors go to the correct pins.
Related resources
a b B Homebuilt system
December 9, 2008 9:41:02 PM

Usually the connectors are labeled and the mobo's usually have them labeled too, so normally it isn't too hard to figure it out. Otherwise you'll have to look up the manual online (usually from the manufacturer's website).
It usually looks like the picture below, not sure if your familiar or not with the mobo manuals or not??
a b B Homebuilt system
December 9, 2008 9:46:34 PM

Here's from the ECS website manual for the K7s5a pro mobo:
Front Panel Connector
The front panel connector (FP1) provides a standard set of switch and LED connectors commonly found on ATX or micro-ATX cases. Refer to the table below for information:
Link for manual download!
FP1 (Front Panel 1)
Numbers below are the pin numbers on the FP1:

Hard disk LED (positive)
MSG LED [dual color or single color (+)]
Hard disk active LED (negative)
MSG LED [dual color or single color (-)]
Reset Switch
Power Switch
Reset Switch
Power Switch
No pin
December 9, 2008 9:47:24 PM

The connections to be made include Power LED (2 wires in a 3 pin connector), Speaker (2 wires in a 4 pin connector), and three which have 2 wires in 2 pin connectors - Reset SW, S/B SW (What is this one?), HDD LED.

December 9, 2008 9:50:08 PM

Thanks lunyone I had already downloaded the manuals for six versions of the K7S5A boards.
a b B Homebuilt system
December 9, 2008 9:53:10 PM

Reset SW(itch)
S/B SW(I belive is the Power switch, IIRC)
HDD LED (is the HD activity LED connection)

The 2 wires in a 3 pin connector is just that the case has an older setup. I think they used to be 3 pin connectors, but now they only need 2, IIRC. The 2 wires in the 4 pin Speaker connector is different and may just be the way they used to be, not certain on that one. I recently had to snip off the extra connectors and just manually put on each single connector onto the right connection point on the mobo. You might/might not have this option.
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 9, 2008 11:50:08 PM

I think little harm can come from trial and error.

The power and reset switches can be connected either way.

The led switches need proper orientation, or the led will not work. The positive side should be colored, the ground should be white, I think. The positive side might also have a small raised delta on one side of the connector. If you connect it the wrong way the led won't work, but no harm will be done, just reverse them and see if it works that way.
December 10, 2008 12:19:29 AM

If your testing motherboards get a generic on of switch at radio shack and test on the table.
December 10, 2008 12:46:35 AM

I've not tried that before. Tell me more.
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2008 1:03:50 AM

You do not need a case to check out a motherboard and it's parts.
Just put it on a dry piece of cardboard, and install the parts.
The generic switch is nice, but you can power up the board just by shorting the two power on pins with a screwdriver. A momentary contact is all that is needed to start it up. The other leads are not necessary.

December 10, 2008 5:13:19 AM

When you say install the parts cpu's are already on the boards.
As to the rest I presume you mean barebones, i.e. PSU, RAM, Video Card, Screen, Mouse, Keyboard and Hard Drive. Anything more or less?
a b B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2008 5:18:58 AM

Yeah you don't need to install the mobo's into the case at all. Just put on a non-conductive surface (cardboard works well) and hook all of the necessary parts (CPU, CPU HSF, PSU, Memory, GPU) and turn the power on, by shorting out the power switch pins. This way you don't waste any extra time screwing in the mobo's and trying to hook up all of the parts inside of the case.
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2008 12:23:58 PM

The cpu heat sink, in particular is best mounted while the mobo is outside of the case.

On a new build, I test the cpu/heatsink/ram/psu and video card to check that it will post before putting it in the case.

Usually, you have to remove the video card, and disconnect the psu before putting the mobo in the case.
I will also try to connect the front panel headers to the mobo while it is partially out of the case. Those pins are very hard to see and plug in if the mobo is already mounted.

As always, ground yourself to the case before touching anything else.
December 10, 2008 3:55:31 PM

One of the pieces of advice I have been given is to use a silver oxide compound thermal heatsink paste to seal CPU and heatsink. Does one do that with the CPU already in the motherboard socket?
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2008 4:12:15 PM

fistral13 said:
One of the pieces of advice I have been given is to use a silver oxide compound thermal heatsink paste to seal CPU and heatsink. Does one do that with the CPU already in the motherboard socket?


The thermal material such as AS-5 or MX-2 are used between the heat sink and the cpu to make a good thermal connection. Go to the arctic silver web site for a pictorial on how to apply it.

Push pin coolers can be tricky to install.
A bad installation can lead to higher temperatures, and even cpu throttling.
With the pc powered down, gently rock the cooler to see if it is on solid, or if it wobbles a bit.
Push pin coolers are best installed while the motherboard is outside of the case.
You need to be able to look at the back of the board to verify that
all 4 pins are completely through and locked.
Play with the pins on the cooler first, so you can see exactly how they work.
Read the instructions that came with your retail cpu.
When pushing down on the pins, do a diagonal pair first.
If you don't, it is hard to get the last pin in.
Don't forget to clean the parts and reapply fresh thermal compound every time.
Don't try to reuse the TIM.
Rubbing alcohol is OK as a cleaner.
I use a paper coffee filter to clean with because it is lint free.
Any name brand TIM should be OK(as-5, Mx-2, etc.)
When applying the TIM, don't use too much, because it can act as an insulator.
Don't apply too little, either, because it won't spread and fill the microscopic
imperfections in the surfaces. A dollop about the size of a grain
of rice should be about right.
December 11, 2008 3:47:38 AM

I can confirm that the 2 pin connector labelled S/B SW is the power switch.
Plugging it into pins 6 and 8 is now working as expected.
December 11, 2008 6:16:43 AM

As a temporary measure I put jumpers on pins 2 and 4 (at right angles to one another). With a short piece of bell wire in each jumper, I connected the power LED plug, and it worked!

Video Card in a PCI slot not giving a signal to monitor.
Is this an indication that the CPU is not functioning correctly?
a b B Homebuilt system
December 11, 2008 7:58:10 AM

No, might be a bad GPU, not sure, need a bit more of information. Is the computer starting up, or what is the condition that your in when you observe it??
December 11, 2008 5:03:05 PM

The Graphics Card I am using is ATI Technology Inc PN 109-40600-10 and it is labelled AMC Ver 2.0

The monitor is HP w19b

Pressing the Power Button starts CPU fan and Case fan.
(With a "stick in my ear" I can hear the HD running).

What else can I try?