Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

CPU Upgrade Converter

Last response: in CPUs
Share
January 7, 2003 1:02:53 PM

Not sure if this belongs here...

Anyhow, I am surprised Tom's Hardware didn't pick up on the new upgradeware adapter. It's cheaper than the Powerleap one (about $30 I think). Check it out here:
http://www.upgradeware.com/english/product/slot-t/slot-...

I would very much like to see a review of this before buying it.

More about : cpu upgrade converter

a b à CPUs
January 7, 2003 6:35:55 PM

They did, in fact they did a review on it. Now, there is still a reason to pay more for the Powerleap version: some boards don't support core voltages of less than 1.80v, which is far too much for a Tualatin core CPU.

You see, the Upgradeware adapter does nothing more than manupulate the voltage detection pins of the Slot1 package. So you can have your CPU detected at voltages from 1.30v to 2.05v. And the MOTHERBOARD'S Voltage Regulator will set the voltage to whatever it detects, UNLESS it's out of range. That means, if your board has the earlier VRM 8.2 voltage regulator, which has operational voltages from 1.8 to 2.8v, you would have to set the Upgradeware adapter to AT LEAST 1.8v just to get it to boot! I've been doing this for YEARS on Coppermine CPU's and Abit Slotket III adapters, but the Coppermine is .18 micron and can handle it. The Tualatin is .13 micron and CAN'T.

Later boards used VRM 8.4. This spec was released in anticipation of the Coppermine core CPU and allows voltages down to 1.5v or less. So basically, if your board was designed with the Coppermine in mind, it will work with the Tualatin on the Upgradeware adapter at reasonable voltages.

So now, if the VRM 8.2 boards won't work at less than 1.80v core, what can you do? You then need a Powerleap adapter, as these have their own ONBOARD VRM. They are detected by the motherboard as 2.05 volts I believe, but that's just the input voltage for the slotket, the CPU operates on a separate voltage input from the Powerleap VRM.

And that's the whole story, you can only use the Upgradeware/Tualatin combo on the newer VRM 8.4 boards, you'll have to use a Powerleap adapter on the VRM 8.2 boards. I'm tired of explaining this to every newb who thinks he just discovered something.

You'll want to look up Tom's review on these adapters.

<font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
January 7, 2003 6:40:37 PM

Quote:
I'm tired of explaining this to every newb who thinks he just discovered something.

Heh heh. That's what you get for being knowledgable and helpful. :-p


PC Repair-Vol 1:Getting To Know Your PC.
PC Repair-Vol 2:Troubleshooting Your PC.
PC Repair-Vol 3:Having Trouble Troubleshooting Your PC?
PC Repair-Vol 4:Having Trouble Shooting Your PC?
Related resources
January 7, 2003 7:10:14 PM

I was aware of the review they did. That was not on the adapter I am talking about, it was on the FCPGA to FCPGA2 adapter. I meant the newer slot 1 adapter they have (called the Slot T).

Sorry you had to explain this to another newb who thinks they discovered something (what exactly you think I thought was discovered, I am not sure).

Of course you correctly pointed out that I should have mentioned that boards that do not use VRM 8.4, NEED the iP3/T. By the same token, the article SHOULD have mentioned that there are many slot 1 BX boards out there (some are mentioned here: http://www.upgradeware.com/english/product/slot-t/compa...) that DO NOT need the iP3/T - the cheaper (by about 50%) upgradeware Slot T adapter will do just fine. As it stands, people might think they have no other option. While this maybe true for some, it's not true for everyone with a BX board.

So if you have an Abit BX6-2 or an Asus P2B rev 1.10, which upgrade option would you choose? The $160 Celeron 1.4 GHz iP3/T, or the $30 upgradeware Slot T and a $60-$70 Celeron 1.4 GHz cpu?

I did NOT mean to bash the article or the iP3/T. I was merely hoping Tom's Hardware would mention the Slot T too, since that would show people a cheaper alternative for BX boards with low voltage support.

I am truly sorry for the original post, I wrote it in haste.
a b à CPUs
January 7, 2003 8:24:05 PM

Was it revision 1.10 that went to VRM 8.4? I thought it was Revision 1.12 or something, but you could be right, hard to keep track sometimes.

<font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
January 7, 2003 9:05:21 PM

When I first saw the article, I was kind of excited, as my computer is a 400 MHz Pentium II, and I was thinking about upgrading it in the next couple of months. The article was fine, but I'm not sure the upgrade converter is the way to go. By my research/calculations it would cost about $120 (at the cheapest) to upgrade my system to a 1.4 GHz Celeron. For that same price, I could replace the motherboard and upgrade to an Athlon XP 2000+. The motherboard upgrade seems to obviously be better, but I'd like to hear from the rest of you.

Drew
January 7, 2003 9:45:43 PM

It must be 1.10, because that is the model upgradeware has on its 'confirmed compatible' list. There are a bunch P2B models on that list (e.g. P2B-B, P2B-L, etc) with different revision numbers. I am not familiar with those boards, but they all have compatible revision numbers less than 1.10.
January 7, 2003 9:56:30 PM

Well, remember that you should also factor in the cost of the new power supply you'll need for an Athlon XP 2000+. What's the lowest price you can find for a m/b, Athlon XP 2000+ and new P/S?

Now, depending on your motherboard, you may be able to go for the cheaper option of upgradeware's Slot T adapter + a Celeron 1.4 GHz. The adapter is about $30-35 (I think) and the CPU you can find on pricewatch.com for as low as $62.

Slot T compatible motherboards are listed here:
http://www.upgradeware.com/english/product/slot-t/compa...

Note that this isn't a complete list, and your m/b may be compatible anyway. As Crashman pointed out, you need a motherboard with a VRM 8.4 voltage regulator that supports the lower voltages of the Tualatin CPUs.

To sum up, check that your board supports the Upgradeware adapter first. If it does, then you should be able to get a 1.4 Ghz Celeron upgrade for about $100. If not, then you definitely need the iP3/T.
January 8, 2003 12:57:17 PM

Thanks for your response. I agree with everything you said. Your new power supply comment was especially helpful, as that issue was something I hadn't thought of (to be honest, wasn't even AWARE of), and that's exactly why I posted in the first place, to see if there was anything I was missing.

Also, your comment about the Upgradeware adapter was most welcome, and it does change my calculations considerably. I found it selling for $32 Canadian (shipping not included) at Bytewise Computers at http://www.bytewizecomputers.com/products/7/9/104/1048 vs. a best price for $68 for the Powergrade converter. I found 1.3 GHz Celerons as cheap as $48, so this Upgradeware adaptor reduces the total price for such an upgrade considerably to $80 vs. $125 for a barebones Athlon XP 2000+ system. (Note: since I need a new power supply, I'd probably buy a whole barebones system, which eases some concerns about the difficulty in swapping motherboards.)

Like you, I would like to see Tom's Hardware review this cheaper Upgradeware product or at least hear from others who have used it. (Has anyone used it with a BCM QS440BX motherboard?) Maybe this will happen after it is more widely available, as the Bitewise site says it won't be available until Friday (January 10, 2003).

I do still think that anyone considering either (ANY!) CPU upgrade adaptor, should consider upgrading their motherboard instead. The MB upgrade is especially attractive for those who would use the adaptor to upgrade to a P3, as they are still relatively expensive, compared to a Celeron or an Athlon. (Note: the MB upgrade may require a RAM upgrade also, but if you stick with SDRAM you can get it pretty cheap, and if you upgrade to DDR, you get another performance boost.)

Now for a newbie question (that someone is probably tired of answering). If someone did upgrade to a fast Celeron using one of the two upgrade adaptors, why are they limited to 1.4 GHz? It looks like there are Cererons available up to 2 GHz, and the 1.7 GHz version is especially attractive at only $54. Also, if I really am limited to 1.4 GHz, can I underclock a faster version rather than buying an expensive 1.4 GHz version, as a 1.4 GHz is $62.

Drew

P.S. Most of the prices I quoted include shipping.
January 8, 2003 1:47:51 PM

I looked at this route, but instead I did this:

MSI 6309 ($35.00)
Celery 1.0 100FSB 256 ($35.00)

A little more work, a little less power than the 1.4, but free sound and over double the previous performance for $70.
January 10, 2003 11:33:16 AM

Glad I could help. About your motherboard, did you check the compatibility list? If it's not there, you can check if it supports CPU voltages down to 1.5 V (look at the manual). If it does, it *should* work ok.

The problem is that the Tualatin (PIII-based) FCPGA2 Celerons only reach up to 1.4 GHz. I believe Intel also limited the Tualatin Pentium III to the same speed, so that it doesn't directly compete with its brother, the P4.

The Celerons that run at 1.7 GHz+ are NOT PIII-based. They are based on the P4 architecture (Willamette and Northwood cores) and are, of course, for socket 478.

Hence, the fastest Celeron available for the FCPGA2 socket (which is what the adapters convert to) is the 1.4 GHz.

It's obvious Intel wants people to switch platforms and buy new m/b's with their new chipsets. The Tualatin-based PIIIs and Celerons could have been pushed higher... Too bad. It pisses me off that some old, lower-clocked PIIIs are more expensive than P4s due to their demand.

Let me just add that I was looking for such an adapter simply because I loved my old BX board. I also don't like to be forced to change my platform, especially since it was so stable. I had an Abit BX6-2 that lasted for 3-4 years. With a 1.4 GHz Celeron it would last another 1-2 years I think. In the end I was forced to buy a new m/b and cpu when I ruined my slot 1 to FCPGA adapter. It was impossible to find another one in Greece (I have NO idea why...). Anyhow, I took my Abit BX6-2 to the US, found a new adapter and gave it my girlfriend. Pretty soon I will upgrade her PC using the upgradeware adapter.

If you have any other questions, just ask.
!