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Could use some help with plans for my first build

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March 2, 2009 5:41:17 PM

Hey guys! First time posting here, and also my first computer build. I am pretty sure this is a fairly original project, because I can find next to no information on it after countless hours on google....I am building a 'laptop' of sorts. I have a 16"x12"x3" aluminum briefcase that I am going to be putting the beast in. The reason I need help is because I am using mini-itx desktop components to build the thing because I can find no laptop bits that meet my specs. Here is my parts list.

Motherboard: Commell LV-676X Specs here.
Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4 GHz 1060 MHz FSB
HDD: 500GB laptop drive or 1 TB desktop drive, not sure yet
RAM: 4GB Corsair 240 pin dual channel 800MHz DDR2
Display: 15 inch LCD from Toshiba A205 laptop.
Power: either this along with a small 12V military surplus battery, or the same battery, this and a scrounged AC adapter to charge it.


Now my main worries are the power and the LCD. I don't know if that 150 Watt PicoPsu is going to be enough to drive this thing. I also don't know for sure that the LCD will work. According to my researching, as long as I can cobble together a connector to go from the LVDS out on the motherboard to the input on the panel, it should work. But I was hoping someone here could give me a more definite answer.

I figure best case scenario is I learn loads about computers and my plans will work. Worst case scenario is I learn loads about computers and I end up with an awesome desktop that will fit in a shoebox....lol.

If someone can help me out here I will be very grateful. And I can post pictures and performance data once I get all the parts and build it if you guys want. Thanks in advance!

More about : plans build

March 2, 2009 5:57:39 PM

If have any hopes to get this project to work, ditch the quad-core for a low power dual-core or single-core cpu.
March 2, 2009 10:25:14 PM

If you must go quad, then get a Q8300 or Q9400. They run cooler and are faster.
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March 2, 2009 10:54:01 PM

What about the M-series intel released right before Core 2 got put into all the laptops ~2005.

An M-760/770 is a quick chip and is a low power choice.

Pretty sure dell used it in their Inspiron 9300. Pull up a review if you can't find a benchmark.
March 3, 2009 5:51:03 AM

That Q6600 will toast your laptop, it will be too hot. Even the Q8300 will probably be very warm, you won't want to have this thing sitting on your lap.
March 3, 2009 4:56:57 PM

Thanks for the replies! Darn. I was actually considering the 8300, but I kept finding contradictory information about the FSB. Some places said you can use a 1333MHz FSB processor with a 1060MHz FSB socketed motherboard, but it would run slower. Other places said it wouldn't even be recognized cause of the difference in FSB.

Here is a sorta cobbled together look at what I was thinking of...the floppy is just for size comparison. The pasted in motherboard is supposed to be about 6" square, and I was thinking put it an inch or so off the bottom of the case. Put a fan directly above it, or to the side either blowing on the processor or sucking away from it.




If it will actually screw up the computer, I guess I'll have to switch processors but if its just gonna be a little uncomfortable to hold I can deal with that lol. I would prefer a quad because they are so fast but I guess if I really need to I could find a comparable core2 duo. Any ideas about the power? And thx again, you guys have already been more helpful than any of the other places I've looked at on Google.
March 3, 2009 5:37:10 PM

If you bothered to read the specs for the power cable adapter you posted, you would see you can only use a cpu with a TDP of either 35W or 65W. The Q6600 is 95W, as are most quad core cpus. You also realize, you need to fit the stock heatsink in that case, as well intake and exhaust fans for cooling. The stock heatsink sits about 3" above the motherboard itself. You'd be best off getting a e5x00 or e7x00 cpu.
March 3, 2009 9:57:08 PM

Ok first of all, I did read the specs. I thought that 12V Auxiliary connector meant that it wasn't the primary power source for the processor, i.e. "auxiliary" meaning that connector was a backup for if you had one of those lower wattage cpu's. My mistake. I also wasn't aware that the heatsink was so huge. I had planned for one fan, didn't realise you need an intake AND exhaust fan. Again, my mistake. However please remember this is my first time doing anything more serious than changing a hard drive. I am pretty good with electronics, just don't know a whole lot about the inner workings of computers yet. I can see now why you guys have said I should swap to a smaller dual core processor. Thank you. Now, I notice that the E7500 is faster in GHz than the quad core, but it has less cache (also read it could be overclocked to nearly 4 Ghz...). Do you think I could expect close to equal performance? I do a fair bit of programming, as well as a little video/audio processing, and maybe the occasional game. I know that most programs don't take advantage of the quad core, so I wouldnt miss too much there, but Linux does, and I figured anything might help the horrid Windows boot time. Sorry if I seem like a moron but I am really way more familiar with the software aspect of computers than hardware.
March 3, 2009 10:00:50 PM

Dude. You need to be slightly realistic with this project here.

You expect to put enough cooling into the briefcase to withstand not just a stable 4ghz OC, but the constant thrashing dragging it around is going to cause?

Why not be a slight bit more realistic, and go for a mobile processor.

You don't get to have it both ways.

Also, coming from a fellow programmer, what are you utilizing that has such great core demands? I made it through comp sci @ ucla with my T7200 in my Inspiron a lot better than some of the other kids.
March 4, 2009 1:36:31 PM

Oh God no. I didn't actually intend to overclock it that much, if at all. Just noticed it was possible lol. If I ever did decide to overclock the thing, I doubt I'd do more than making it an even 3 Ghz. When I first started on this idea, I was going to use a mobile processor, and one of Intel's laptop motherboards. But those were sorely lacking as far as I/O ports, RAM, and processors were concerned. See, I am not really pleased with mobile processors right now. My current laptop, with an intel Pentium dual core, unzips and copies files appx. 3 times slower than a 6 year old dell desktop with stock processor (can't remember what it is but its not dual lol). Unfortunately, I know I can't have things both ways :(  I was just wondering how huge of a difference I would see between the two processors. As for the programming, its probably not the best practice, but I often have several different projects open at the same time, and I dabble a little bit with game programming when I am horribly bored. You are right, its not really that processor intensive, but I do notice my computer bogging down, especially with the game programs. Good job in your computer science by the way!

I guess cooling is a more serious problem then I gave it credit for eh? I suppose I could scrap the 'laptop-ish' idea for now and turn it into a portable desktop with a screen built in. That way I could use more or bigger fans. This is starting to turn into a bit of a nightmare lol. Ok suppose I DO decide to listen to reason...The motherboard and hdd would be all alone in the bottom of that case. No battery. No overclocking. Would one or two fans be enough to keep it safe?
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