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PSU motherboard connector

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by ross, May 28, 2006.

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  1. ross

    ross Guest

    Hi there , I don't really know much about computers but decided to
    change the noisy psu on my PC which is about three years old with a
    low noise psu from maplins . The problem I have is that although the
    noisy psu is an atx psu and the psu I've bought is described as an atx
    psu ( sounds straightforward so far ) on inspection some of the
    motherboard connector wires are different colours or, the same coloured
    wires are in different pin positions on the connector . The guy I spoke
    to at maplins said manufacturers sometimes use different colour coding
    and it won't make any difference , I'm not sure I'm convinced , and
    don't want to toast my motherboard . Any advice would be appreciated
  2. lsmartino

    lsmartino Guest

    ross ha escrito:
    You didn´t provide us with enough information. What motherboard do you
    have? What CPU your computer uses? Is your computer a clone, or a DELL?
  3. If you have a connector that is fairly standard, and you change the
    pinout, you risk getting in trouble when someone connects up that
    power supply to their motherboard assuming that common connector is
    indeed using the common pinout.

    Most people won't notice the color coding, but will make sure
    the connector is what they need.

    Thus, changes are pretty high that the coloring of the wiring won't
    mean a thing, but the power supply is using the standard connector
    pinout. If they didn't want to be standard, they'd use a different

    If you want to be sure, then put a load on the power supply, a hard
    drive for instance because you can be even more certain that the drive
    connectors are standard, and then start up the power supply. Use a voltmeter
    to make sure the voltages are what they should be on the pins they should

  4. lsmartino

    lsmartino Guest

    Michael Black ha escrito:
    Well, Dell computers in the Pentium 3 era used a dedicated PSU with a
    conventional ATX connector but the pin assignment was different from
    the standard. They made an arrangement with Intel to get motherboards
    using that non standard ATX connector.
    I wouldn´t be so sure. Better to be safe than sorry.
  5. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    The guy at Maplins is right. The pin out of the connector is standard not the
    wire colour.

  6. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    Really ? Good Lord ! That's *insane*

  7. Rich Webb

    Rich Webb Guest

    As you noted previously, insanity. However, insanity is not precluded.
    Google for "Dell nonstandard" for a slice of the horror stories. There
    is indeed a standard connecter and pinout. Some manufacturers <cough>
    apparently use the standard connector but a non-standard pinout.
    Clever, eh?
  8. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    That's very interesting and I'm grateful for finding out.

    We have a Dell in the office that blew its PSU a few yrs ago. It was just out of
    the first year warranty so we paid Dell to get an onsite extended warranty so as
    to get it replaced. For reasons of Dell's incompetence it took them nearly a week
    to do this since they initially 'diagnosed' a motherboard fault over the phone
    although it obviously wasn't so to us.

    Anyway, I remember thinking it would have been quicker and cheaper to fit a
    generic psu but I'm glad we didn't now. Only reason was we thought it looked
    non-standard when we saw it but I forget why.

  9. jakdedert

    jakdedert Guest

    It 'is' true. It was pretty a pretty hot topic at the time on
    motherboard ng's.

    Why did they do it?

    Should be obvious: they wanted a captive customer base for replacements.
    In this case, the poor semi-informed dude who thought he only needed a
    replacement supply soon found out he also needed a new motherboard...and
    both had to be purchased exclusively from Dell.

  10. budgie

    budgie Guest

    Actually when you get to the point where the magic Dell smoke has escaped from
    the mobo *and* the PSU, their hold on you has diminished dramatically in a
    desktop box.
  11. Franc Zabkar

    Franc Zabkar Guest

    I recently tried to use a 4-pin HD power cable that I'd salvaged from
    an Apricot (?) some years ago. I noticed that the red and yellow wires
    were interchanged. I've heard that Commodore used to do things like
    this, too.

    - Franc Zabkar
  12. Puckdropper

    Puckdropper Guest


    Do you know what version of ATX the power supplies are compliant with?
    (WHAT? ATX has versions????? Stupid but true.) At about version 2.0, the
    ATX motherboard connector was changed from a 20-pin to 24-pin system.
    One pin was also moved.

    If you have standard ATX connectors on your motherboard and power supply,
    you should be able to use either without difficulty. If they're non-
    standard you may run in to problems.

    My advice is to save yourself the time and grief and purchase a power
    supply tester. It will easily allow you to see good and bad, from both
    your old and new power supplies.


    Old computers are getting to be a lost art. Here at Uncreative Labs, we
    still enjoy using the old computers. Sometimes we want to see how far a
    particular system can go, other times we use a stock system to remind
    ourselves of what we once had.

    To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at)
  13. Guest

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