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Motherboard ports not aligning to I/O backplate shield

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February 27, 2009 3:42:34 PM

I'm building an Asus P6T Deluxe and Lian-Li A17 system. I've just discovered that when installing the motherboard into the case, the ports (USB, Firewire, etc.) do not align correctly with the I/O backplate provided with the motherboard. At the very least two USB ports are unusable as well as the eSATA port.

The ports on the board sit down to the left of the holes in the I/O backplate shield. I'm thinking if I use metal spacers under the metal standoffs that came with the case, it'll lift the board up slightly although without trying, I suspect that the graphics and sound card brackets will sit higher up than usual.

Anyone else experience this?

Thanks.
a c 235 V Motherboard
February 27, 2009 5:51:52 PM

Something is out of spec. The posts that came with the case should be the correct length; you shouldn't have to use spacers to raise the motherboard. DO you have the same issue if you try a different motherboard?
February 27, 2009 7:38:13 PM

GhislainG said:
Something is out of spec. The posts that came with the case should be the correct length; you shouldn't have to use spacers to raise the motherboard. DO you have the same issue if you try a different motherboard?


I thought that too. No, I don't have another motherboard to try, this is the only one I have. I bought some copper washers to elevate the motherboard, it works to a point, and for some odd reason the graphics card plugs in *without* needing a spacer between the case plate and the bracket of the graphics card.
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February 27, 2009 7:53:15 PM

You're using the standoffs that came with the case, right? If so, then the case itself may be bent. Try pushing on the back of the motherboard tray to bend it back into place.
February 27, 2009 8:09:26 PM

orangegator said:
You're using the standoffs that came with the case, right? If so, then the case itself may be bent. Try pushing on the back of the motherboard tray to bend it back into place.


I have to admit, everything is fragile on this case being aluminum. The motherboard tray does flex a little. Yes I'm using the standoffs that came with the case.
a b V Motherboard
February 27, 2009 8:35:04 PM

DO NOT under any circumstances do anything to make the spacers of different lengths. To do so would put the circuit traces in stress.
February 27, 2009 8:36:34 PM

Sounds like you didnt use brass standoffs or they arent in the right holes.
a b V Motherboard
February 27, 2009 8:41:10 PM

This comes up once in a while. If the board seems flat and has no major irregularities, then the tray it sits on is warped or the entire chassis is out of true.... or they simply shipped the wrong I/O shield :p 
February 27, 2009 9:12:21 PM

Also make sure you use the mobo i/o shield and not the one with the case :) 
February 27, 2009 9:29:59 PM

Thank you for your replies. It's helpful to read other opinions.

I'm not new to building PCs, but this is my first Core i7 system, first system with an aluminum case, and first case with a removable motherboard tray.

Yes I'm using the I/O backplate shield that came with the motherboard. I can't say the shield is perfect by any means, if I hold it against the back of the board (all outside of the case), some of the USB ports are centered, some sit off to the upper-right.

I used the standoffs that were provided in the Lian-Li A17 packaging, nine of them per the holes in this board. They are stainless steel from the looks of it, not brass. All holes in the board have a matching standoff on the motherboard tray.

Well I fixed it, I suppose. I originally had the case on its side, and try after try I'd take the board and carefully lower it onto the case motherboard tray, then slide it towards the back of the case so the ports poke through the I/O backplate shield. Every single time I'd look at the back, the left ports would be alright, but some of the ports on the right would sit low down. Now this is with small copper washers under the metal standoffs, bought from Ace Hardware. No way would this board line up with just the standoffs.

So after it still not lining up, one of the posters here mentioned warping or bending of the motherboard tray. So I decided to sit the case upright, and for the first time take out the motherboard tray, attach the board to the tray, then carefully put the tray + board into the case. Do you know, all ports lined up *perfectly*! I'm sitting here not knowing exactly why I'm successful with this, I have a "who cares, it works now" attitude, but I still can't think what the issue was, maybe the tray wasn't screwed in from the factory.

I still needed the copper washers though, otherwise the board would not have fitted or aligned correctly, it would have been too low down. It still would have fitted into the I/O backplate shield, but almost none of the ports would have been functional. I also had to shift the board to the right slightly when I screwed it into the tray. I also checked that a graphics card can slot in without needing a spacer under its bracket, all seems fine. Odd. First time I've experienced this type of issue.

Thanks.
February 27, 2009 9:31:21 PM

ram1009 said:
DO NOT under any circumstances do anything to make the spacers of different lengths. To do so would put the circuit traces in stress.


Funny you mention that, before I decided to take out the tray and had the case on its side, I considered putting more copper washers on the right side of the board to compensate, but decided against it, the madness has to stop!

Thanks.
February 27, 2009 9:33:14 PM

Proximon said:
This comes up once in a while. If the board seems flat and has no major irregularities, then the tray it sits on is warped or the entire chassis is out of true.... or they simply shipped the wrong I/O shield :p 


That got me wondering as well, is it the board or the case? Well considering I held the I/O backplate shield against the back of the board and it wasn't that bad, i.e. ports weren't too far off the hole in the shield, I conclude without solid evidence that it's the case. Considering this is Lian-Li, supposedly solid engineering, and it was $150, I'm disappointed. I changed to this case from my old Antec Solo, which I liked and was very solid. This A17 case has to be treated like an eggshell!

Thanks.
a b V Motherboard
February 27, 2009 9:42:28 PM

I have had my hands on a Lian-Li, and I own a Silverstone ;) 

When I rap on the front of my Silverstone, it goes "thunk." Built like a tank. Similar weight too :) 
February 27, 2009 9:51:07 PM

Proximon said:
I have had my hands on a Lian-Li, and I own a Silverstone ;) 

When I rap on the front of my Silverstone, it goes "thunk." Built like a tank. Similar weight too :) 


Ha ha, that sounds good. What model of Silverstone do you have? I have to admit I've never heard of them before. I really liked my Antec Solo, great solid case and Antec's support is very good, but that and some other Antec's have a problem, they aren't long enough from backplate to HDD rack to support an 11.5" graphics card, I'm talking mid-tower here. I believe they brought out an Antec Sonata Elite to counter this problem.
February 27, 2009 10:02:27 PM



On the expensive side, but I like it, it's got that Lian-Li sleek and understated look to it. I also like the ports on the top which looks like it's on a panel that tucks away when not in use. Nice case, and yes, I'll bet it's like a tank, that'll last for years that case.

Rap the front of a Lian-Li and you've got a fist sized dent in it. I wouldn't normally have bought this A17, but I couldn't find any other case that looked good, had good cable management features, single 120mm front and rear, as well as optional components, like drive cages, bay with cooling fan, etc.
February 27, 2009 10:18:26 PM

I have a Lian-Li A70 and Asus P6T Deluxe (now anyways...used to be a Rampage Formula in there). I admit that the Lian-Li uses seemingly soft/thin aluminum and I'd like to see them thicken it for what they charge, but I've never had any real problems with the fit of anything. ...and the case is ...

beautiful.


I now have an Antec 300 as well, and though it cost 1/5 as much its a hell of a lot cooler and has way better ventilation as the Lian Li. ...and never had any problems with the fit. It does need some vibration dampening for the hard drives though.
February 28, 2009 5:57:34 PM

halcyon said:
I have a Lian-Li A70 and Asus P6T Deluxe (now anyways...used to be a Rampage Formula in there). I admit that the Lian-Li uses seemingly soft/thin aluminum and I'd like to see them thicken it for what they charge, but I've never had any real problems with the fit of anything. ...and the case is ...

beautiful.


I now have an Antec 300 as well, and though it cost 1/5 as much its a hell of a lot cooler and has way better ventilation as the Lian Li. ...and never had any problems with the fit. It does need some vibration dampening for the hard drives though.




I have a Lian-Li case, Silverstone case and an Antec 300. Lian Li and Silverstone are definitely nicer quality. Even though the Antec 300 isn't much to look at, it has a practical design, good airflow and can't be beat for the $$! Cable management is so easy in that case!
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