moving a Dell 8400 motherboard to a new case

ScrumPuppet

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Hi.

I've been scouring these boards to build myself a new gaming rig slowly over the next year or so. I just picked up an Antec 900 case and a PCP&C 750W Silencer. I plan to move my Dell 8400 (E210882) mobo into the new case and then after Christmas add the Asus Striker 680i. However, the front power and USB pins on the Dell case seem to be different than the new Antec 900. Is there a simple way of modifying the cable? Or, am I out of luck? Thanks.
 

cfvh600

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If you plan on modifying the cables you'll have to make absolutely sure that the wires goes on the correct pins.Otherwise the board might short out when you power it up.
 
I've never had a short problem with the case leads. They're all low voltage. But you should be able to identify the 2 power switch leads going from the power switch to the motherboard pins if you look at the dell connector. Those are really all you need. The leads on the new antec are well marked. You won't need the power led or reset, but you should be able to find them by trial and error.
 

onestar

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I have seen USB ports short and it is not pretty, however the standard power, led, reset and HD are all resilient so there should not be much of a problem there.

Just be very careful with the USB connections.
 

joefriday

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It is damn near impossible to swap an 8400 mobo into anything but another Dell Clamshell case. Not only does your dell use a slave board for the front USB/audio ports, the front power switch and power/hdd led wires are also routed through it. To add insult to injury, all the 8000 series mobos use a unique screw layout that is not ATX compatible. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.
 

systemlord

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You have to know that the 8400 mobo is micro ATX, I know I have one. I to wanted to put it in a different PC case to, you'll need a micro ATX PC case to do it.
 

vois2

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Also be aware that the 8400 motherboard can't handle the specs of your PCP&C psu. I took my 8400 motherboard and hooked it up to a 520W good $100 psu and it totally throttled the cpu at all times. In fact I am quite sure it ruined the motherboard. Later, I replaced my 8400 motherboard for $29 (new) and then put it back with its Dell-provided 350W PSU and the machine ran better than ever before. Larry over at duxcw forums knows a lot about this, how Dell uses non-standard integrated circuitry on its power connector. (I should have listened to him before my experiment.) I am now happily and speedily using the 520W PSU on an abit IP35 Pro with Q6600.
 

systemlord

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I don't think so, I put a Antec 480W Neo in my Dell case without any problems. You can't know for sure that there wasn't something aready going wrong with you old 8400 mobo. How old was the mobo when it sszzzz?
 

ScrumPuppet

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Thanks guys for all the help. I did take the mobo out and attempt to put it in the Antech 900 (which is supposed to be both ATX and micro ATX compatible). Nothing lined up, etc. It was all a real pain. So, it's going back into the original case and the EVGA 680i is on the way just a bit sooner for the new rig.
 

joefriday

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Umm...ya. I'm gonna have to go ahead and disagree with you on that. The board may appear to be mATX at first glance, but if you look close you'll see it's not a standard form factor at all.

mobo_sm.jpg


Notice the 4 screws that hold it on the tray. One at each corner. Also, notice how high the top two screw locations are in relation to the I/O panel location. Way too high.

Now, look at a standard mATX board:

dfi61504vr.jpg


Notice the completely different location of screw holes?

Finally, look at a Dimension 4500/4550 mobo, also part of the clamshell case design. These, unlike ALL the Dimension 8xxx series designs, actually have screw holes in the mATX design (with the exception of the farthest right two screws, but these normally don't end up being a problem).

2P997-2.jpg


Once again to the OP: The 8400 mobo is unique, and not readily swappable to an aftermarket case. More importantly though, ALL the clamshell case designed mobos are difficult to swap over to an aftermarket case due to the integration of the front USB, audio, and power switch/hdd led/power led into one large header on the mobo (the connector labeled "Front Panel Connector" in the first pic).


Good luck to you if you still want to try though. I'm just laying out all facts here so you can make an informed decision.

Joe