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mATX mobo in ATX case

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July 26, 2003 10:32:00 PM

Computer #1, a couple of years ago, went together pretty well. I uses a Shuttle AK31 in a std ATX mid-tower.

For attempt #2, I have ordered a microATX board, the Shuttle MN31N, mainly because of the two VGA ports. Also, I ordered a Fortron FSP300-60PFN PSU thanks to knowledgeable folks like the posters here and the review at Tom's Hardware.

The Fortron, of course, will only fit into a regular ATX case. And, although the mATX mobo won't be too big for the case, it seems that I read somewhere that it's not so easy to fit the smaller board into the larger case. The "form factor" was changed. I suppose that refers to where the holes are drilled on the mobo and how the back panel fits, the PCI slots and their line-up, etc.

In any event, even though I have an old ATX mid-tower on hand that I would like to make work, something tells me I won't easily be able to do that. But, since I've never even seen an mATX board, I don't really know. Any ideas? I've looked at a lot of case ads and don't see any ATX towers that specifically say they are for mATX mobos. Have you had any good luck in trying this??? Maybe I'm only imagining that there will be a problem????

Thanks for your help.

Gary



Cheers!

More about : matx mobo atx case

July 27, 2003 1:05:44 AM

ATX standard is 12" by 9.6"
mATX standard is 9.6" by 9.6"

A mATX board fits in an ATX case.
The main difference is the number of PCI slots. ATX boards have five mATX boards have three. Although if the board does not have an AGP slot they will have six and four PCI slots.

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July 27, 2003 3:05:25 AM

Micro ATX boards fit fine into ATX cases. IN fact, this is how most cheap "custom" PC's are built (such as those you find at PC fairs). Even HP uses Micro boards in full sized cases.

There are also Micro ATX cases that are deep enough for full ATX power supplies, Inwin makes a nice traditional black Micro ATX case as such.

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July 27, 2003 6:32:50 AM

Ahhhh...thanks zpyrd and Crashman! I was tired of spending $$$ on this update - even though it's extremely reasonable. It feels great to know I can "recycle" the case which in fact I had liquid-nailed some carpet pad onto the inside 2 walls and top for sound deadening.

One of the reasons for the Fortron, aside from great performance, was the promise of quietness. This is something I have been pursuing in various ways - almost to the point of water cooling, despite no need to overclock, just for the elimination of fan/air noise.

In any event, since I'm jabbering on, relieved that you've solved my case problem, I've ordered the Newegg "Sale Price" retail Barton 2500+ w HS & fan since I read on another forum that it (the factory hs/fan solution) was actually pretty decent for cooling and for quietness in this incarnation. If that turns out to be too loud, I'll slow down the rpms with a series resistor, and if that fails, I'll go on (back?) to my first impulse which was one of the Thermalrights with a choked down (i.e., fitted with a reducing adapter funnel) large diameter fan voltage-starved to permit only low rpms. The AMD-provided hs/fan seems worth a try, though, since - with Newegg's sale - it adds only about $5 to the cost of the processor ($90 vs $85).

I had thought that a Zalman flower might be the way to go, but some posts I've read (I've been lurking bigtime!) indicate that it might not provide enough cooling for the XP2500. Complicating things a bit further is the small fan on the Nvidia IGP chip on this board. I'll play that "by ear." But the tiny ones are often the worst offenders! One nice thing about the Zalman was that I intended to rip off the IGP fan and count on air from the big Z fan to also cool it.

Well, I rambled on, eh? But if you have any comments or suggestions, please pass 'em on! BTW, the only PCI card is likely to be the Audiotrak Prodigy 8-out and 2-in sound card.




Cheers!
July 27, 2003 7:02:15 AM

The normal Fortrons have 2 speed fans and are quiet except when heavily loaded (more heat) and for the first instant you turn the thing on. If you really needed to insure the fan speed stays low, maybe you should have gone large?

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July 27, 2003 2:14:51 PM

2 speed operation great to know, Crashman. I'd heard that it's loud for first few seconds, but hoped I would never get up to that speed again. I see your point, though, and I noticed you recommended the 350-w Fortron to another poster. It's only $5 more at Newegg (God bless Newegg).

Thing that drew me to the 300-w was the 120-mm fan commented on as being inaudible by many Newegg reviewers. The 350-w has either an 80- or 92-mm fan. But of course, as you suggest, a 120 in second gear will be much louder than an 80 at idle.

At this point, I guess I will try it and ebay it if I need to step up. Do you think I will also have a possible power issue with this supply feeding 2 hd's, a floppy, the sc mentioned, 2 256 Crucials, and a CDROM?

Appreciate your input.

Gary S

Cheers!
July 27, 2003 5:28:06 PM

Actually the 120 might provide enough flow without kicking up the speed, I didn't realize the 300W unit had one.

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July 27, 2003 5:28:53 PM

I don't think you'll see any power issue at all.

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