Select ASRock Motherboards Will Feature Waterproof Coating

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Hazle

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http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/03/the-internet-demanded-partially-scientific-testing-of-ultraeverdry-in-hd/
soooo... they're just gonna spray a layer of this?
 

MANOFKRYPTONAK

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I dont think that would be good for the components...
 

Hazle

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it's non-conductive, FYI. their FAQ was pretty vague on how long it'd lasts though, but the major factor that results in the coating losing it's effectiveness is abrasive force, and is supposed to last longer inside a home environment than outside. another con is that it dries out to a supposed translucent layer, so i'm expecting it to look like it's all covered in spunk if this was the case.
 

mariush

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Gigabyte had problems in India with humidity entering between layers of the pcb (mb pcs have 6-10 layers or more) and causing shorts. They had to use fiber glass woven in another pattern to slow down the speed of humidity penetration and reduce the number of boards returned.
With Haswell it may be the case that more integration and the lower heat dissipated by the cpu makes them able to reduce the number of layers on the board which results into thinner boards.
It may be a move on their part save a couple of dollars on pcb reducing the layers by spending half a dollar or less for conformal coating which would make the board more resistant to flexing.
Also, since Haswell has much lower power modes (using little power on idle), the coating may help with reducing emi coming from video cards and the VRMs.
Anyway, just guesses.
 

vmem

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this almost sounds like a gimmic, seriously, the people doing LN2 or liquid helium suicide runs are ready to burn through many many CPUs, do they really care that much about losing a mobo or two after a few runs? sure, it would make it easier for them, but it's a VERY NICHE market, something they can take care of simply by opening an in-house "custom-mobo-features" department.
More likely this will serve to help extreme overclockers hit higher clocks just a little bit easier (less worrying about your mobo turning out due to excessive condensation), their boards will be more likely chosen to break world records, thus giving them more publicity...
 

madjimms

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How the heck can you waterproof the contact pins on all the I/O stuff & slots/LGA areas?
The PCB isn't conductive, but the contacts are, so how exactly does this make it waterproof?
 

s3anister

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"there is little we can do to go against the force of nature and stop water from condensing on a motherboard when it gets so cold because we use liquid nitrogen to cool it while we're pushing those ultra-high frequencies."
I was thinking this and mineral oil bath cooling. Seems the most likely reason for waterproofing a board to me.
 

lockhrt999

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My Asus mobo has that kind of problem. Too much BSOD in Rainy Season. My old gigabyte with 845 chipset still doesn't have such problems.
 

InvalidError

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Boards with more than six layers are very uncommon in the consumer electronics world. You have to look at the high-end for boards with 8-10 layers... workstation/server-class boards, premium overclocking boards or premium sockets like LGA1366/LGA2011.

IIRC, Intel started pushing for six layers with the P4 but board manufacturers found ways to stick to four layers on their lower-end boards until the MCH got integrated in CPUs.

As for moisture getting into PCBs, that should not happen on a properly manufactured motherboard since the resin/epoxy that holds the fiberglass and copper together should not absorb moisture. Not to mention that just about all PCBs are already covered in conformal coating anyway in part to prevent "tin whiskers" from growing across traces and also in part to prevent solder/flux from adhering to random exposed copper during assembly so most of a PCB's surface area should already be airtight even without the extra coat of conformal coating.

I think the main real-world benefit for most people here would be eliminating the risk of "tin whiskers" (conductive dust) bridging pins on SOIC/TQFP chips but with almost everything shipping in BGA packages these days, this shouldn't be much of a problem anymore.
 
Interesting, are they going to put waterproof lids on all unused connectors and slots as well? As we all know they do have exposed electric connections. Anybody spilling water on their board would be lucky if missing this or the other connector or slot
 

koga73

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Protects against humidity but it would also be useful for computers in walk-in coolers where the heat from the computer could potentially create condensation in the cool environment.
 

InvalidError

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Adding heat cannot cause condensation since heat raises the temperature which incidentally raises the air's water-saturation pressure - its moisture-bearing capacity - effectively preventing condensation. It is not the addition of heat that is causing condensation; it is the lack of sufficient heat to keep the board's temperature above dew point that is.

That's why phase-change CPU coolers often have heated seals - raise exposed surfaces' temperatures above dew point to prevent condensation.
 

douglasw

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I can't understand what's the purpose to waterproof a motherboard....what is taking over are the small water cooling units like corsair and intel and there almost 100 percent leak free so the custom loops are something of the past....
 
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