What do I do now? More Cooling? New Power Supply?

Hi Everyone!

I will openly admit that I'm by NO means an expert when it comes to upgrading and building PC's. I can put in a new graphics card, hard drive, network card and that kind of stuff but I've never tried building one from scratch before or changing motherboards which I'm now planning on doing.

I'm getting rid of the PCChips M801LR Motherboard that came with my machine and planning to go in favour of either a SoA VIA KT333 ATX A or an ASUS A7V333 KT333 (couldn't find anywhere doing an MSI one cheap) Other than that, I just want to recycle the other bits, Athlon 1800XP+, 256MB PC133, GeForce 4 MX 440, CD-RW, DVD-ROM, etc.

I already have a heat sink and fan with the chip and I'm planning to use the same case I have at the moment so there is already a power supply wired up in there. Do I need to change anything or can I hope that I can rip out the current motherboard and plug in the new one? What else will I need to do?

Any advice would really be appreciated.


9 answers Last reply
More about what cooling power supply
  1. How many watts is your current PSU? If everything's running stable and you're just switching the mobo, you should probably be okay. But if it's kinda lame to begin with, you might as well add a nice new one that'll last you at least 3 years.

    Depends how much more stuff you want to put in the box in the not-too-distant future.
  2. If possible you should try getting a DDR mobo. SDRAM is a real bottleneck for AXP and by getting DDR you would probably really improve your performance.

    My sig's faster than yours, and it overclocks better too....
  3. You will have to drop the PC133 module(s) and it would also be a good idea to leave that GF4MX alone.
    Make sure your PSU has a 300 watts power capacity.

    <font color=red>Do ya feel lucky, Punk? Well...? Do ya?
    Then go ahead and buy that C3 CPU!</font color=red>
  4. I just got an Ausus, A7V333, and I like it alot, haven't had any problems at all. When instaling the CPU on your new motherboard, make sure to get clean off the old thermal tape off of the heatsink and replacing with thermal paste.
  5. Assuming you're running Windows, before the last shutdown, go into the Control Panel/System/Device Manager, and remove EVERYTHING. DO NOT allow the system to reboot when asked after removing some of the devices, and leave the mouse driver until last.

    After you install the new MB and you reboot for the first time, go into the system BIOS and find the place where it asks about a "PnP OS" and set it to "Yes". When you reboot, Windows will reinstall all the system drivers and should wake up with the new mobo under your existing configuration.

    If you miss this important step, the system will wake up with Windows configured for the previous mobo, and a complete reinstallation of Windows and all your software could be the only way to get the system beathing and stable.
  6. Desirable output load ratings for a 300W PSU:
    +3.3V ---- 28A (MOBO, AGP, Sound card, Other PCI)
    +5V ------ 30A (MOBO, Memory, PCI cards, HD, CD, Other drives, USB, Floppy disc drive, Keyboard, Mouse)
    +12V ----- 15A (MOBO, CPU, FANS, HD, CD, Other drives > AMD Athlon 1800+ sucks 6.87A)
    -12V ----- 0.8A
    +5VSB ---- 2A (Depends on your MOBO. I think U will need at least 1.5A)
    -5V ------ 0.3A
    Max output 300W, MAX +3.3V + +5V < 80W, peak power and current must be supported for a minimum of 20 secs.

    I have a cheap 300W Power suply that only supports 7A in the 3.3V rail (I can't boot my Pentium III w/ a Geforce), 15A in the 5V rail and 5A in the 12V rail!
    You should get a ANTEC or ENERMAX 300W+ those are the best PSUs.

    >>> Cooling: I recomend a copper SKIVING cooler such Cooljag or GlobalWin but they are heavy and expensive.
    >>> If your temps with your cooler are low and you are not going to overclock keep this fan.
    >>>Thermal paste is not recomended for long period of use and you will need to re-aply it. The diffences between the Bergquist 225U (THERMAL PAD) and the Arctic Silver 3 (THERMAL PASTE) are 5C (the thermal paste runs 5C lower then thermal pad)
  7. hmmm...

    Those ratings add up to 488.6 Watts. Is this correct for a 300W power supply?
  8. You can't use the maximum of each volt rail since the maximum power is 300W.
  9. Your going to have to either buy new memory or consider different boards because neither of the boards you mentioned support SDRam(pc133). They only support DDR. Now if you want to use the PC133, you should either get the ECS K7S5A or the Asus A7A. Those two boards support both DDR and SDRam. That way if you want to upgrade later, you don't have to go out and spend money on a new motherboard. If your not tight for cash either will be fine. Oh, another thing, that motherboard of yours is a uatx motherboard. If your system happens to be a in uatx case your going to have to replace the case also. Get something that has good airflow and at least 300w psu.
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