Over the past few years I've been building computers as a hobby, but always within a case...is there some way of actually testing a system prior to installing all the components in a case? Troubleshooting within a case is a bit of a pain, so I was wondering if you could give me any sugggestions about an 'external testing platform'...would a piece of wood with 6 drilled mobo holes be ok? Or should I look at finding an old case and rip the motherboard tray out?
Thanks for any ideas.
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I'd say go with the motherboard tray. Very convenient. It is what I used to test my build.
if you buy a decent case these days the mobo mounts on the back panel... and it folds down. - so basically you mount hte motherboard, and fold down the back panel flat on the ground and there you go... have a wide open area to work on. Then when you're all set, you just fold the back panel back up into the case.
if you want a visual to help this make more sense... I have the Raidmax Smilidon case. Look it up online/newegg and look at some pics of how it opens up to let you work on the motherboard without having to do anything
You can just lay the parts out on your table or workbench, plug it all together and go.
In the old days I would build systems this way on the carpeted floor in front of my tv. People would say that this isn't wise because of the static electricity factor but I never had an problems. I wouldn't do it today though because now I would worry about it.
Thanks for all your suggestions...I guess eventually I can buy a case like lowriderflow mentioned, but for the moment I'll just have to make do with building on a table/finding an old case
Best answer selected by dgre005.
You do not need a case to test.
I routinely put the motherboard on the mobo box on top of the anti-static wrap. Attach your psu and parts and test away. If your mobo does not have a pwr button, just use a small screwdriver to make contact with the two pwr switch pins. I just run memtest, and then put the parts in the case with assurance that I have good parts.
Also, with fold out motherboard trays, you have to watch the height of your heat sink at it can interfere with closing the tray back up.