Motherboards, Power Supplies, and Cases INFO450 Kyle Barry, Brian Wiltbank, Mike Barnas, Tanner Pizza
Motherboard Form Factors • Full AT • Baby AT • LBX/NLX • ATX • FlexATX/MicroATX • Mini-ITX, Nano-ITX, Pico-ITX
Full AT and Baby AT • Full AT – 12” wide and 11” long, Baby AT – 8.5” wide and 10.5” long. • Typically not used in modern computers today.
NLX • 9” wide by 13.6” long. • Created for a low profile, low cost computer. • Identifiable by the I/O ports on the back of the motherboard. • Uses a riser card to enclose the expansion cards. • Superseded by the ATX family of motherboards.
ATX • 7.5” wide by 12” long. • Built specifically to house the Pentium II Processor. • Has I/O ports, an AGP slot, and Soft Power support.
Micro ATX/Flex ATX • Both smaller versions of the ATX motherboard (9.6”x9.6” for Micro, 9”x7.5” for Flex). • Both fit into an ATX case.
I/O Interfaces • Sound • Video • USB • Serial • Firewire • Parallel • NIC • PS/2
Sound • A motherboard can contain sound jacks, mini TRS connectors or Toslink connectors.
Video • Modern onboard video ports use VGA, DVI, or HDMI output. • Computer system’s RAM or chipset power the onboard video.
USB • Motherboards contain multiple USB slots. • USB 1.1 • Upgrade from USB 1.0, fixing bugs. • 4 pin connector, maximum speed of 12 Mbit/s. • Earliest USB revision to be widely adopted. • USB 2.0 • Released in August 2000. • Maximum bandwidth of 480 Mbit/s.
USB • USB 3.0 • Released in November, 2008. • Maximum speed of 5 Gbits/s, 10x faster than USB 2.0. • Backwards compatible with USB 2.0. • USB can be used for various I/O devices, such as keyboards, mouse, printers, cameras, disk drives, and network devices.
Serial • Serial ports are being left out of newer motherboards, considered a legacy port. • Used by modems and point-of-sale items.
IEEE 1394/FireWire • Developed by Apple. • Comparable to USB, used by some external hard drives, digital cameras.
Parallel • Typical use was for printers. • Also considered a legacy port.
NIC • Network interface card, port for RJ-45 (Ethernet). • Can be onboard or connected via an expansion card.
PS/2 • Connection for keyboard and mouse. • Being phased out by USB keyboards and mice. • 6 pin connector, green is typically the mouse, purple is typically the keyboard.
Question • 1) Which of the following are in the ATX family of motherboards? • ATX • AT • MiniATX • FlexATX • None of the above • 2) Which of the following are considered integrated I/O ports? • Serial port • USB • PS/2 • Ethernet port • All of the above
Chipsets • Include the Northbridge/ Southbridge that manage and support everything that plugs into the motherboard. • Northbridge: • Communication between the CPU and: memory and Video Controller (fastest devices). • Southbridge: • Communication between the CPU and all other devices.
Expansion Slots and Buses • Where a circuit board can be inserted to add new capabilities to the computer
Bus Architectures • Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) • 33 MHz, 32 bits wide, backwards compatible with ISA • Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) • 66 MHz, 32 bits wide, only used for video cards • PCI-Extended (PCI-X) • Available in different speeds: 66, 133, 266, 533 MHz on a 64 bit bus
Bus Architectures Continued • Mini-PCI • Used for laptops. • PCI-Express (PCIe) • Fastest available because of direct connection to Northbridge. • Uses point-to-point serial connection. • Each wire between the PCIe controller and a device is called a lane. • Most common is 16 lane (x16).
Memory Slots • SIMM • 30 or 72 pin slots, phased out • DIMM • Older use 168 or 184 pins • Newer use 240 pins • SODIMM and Micro-DIMM • Used for laptops
CPU Sockets • Most commonly use PGA or LGA. • Land Grid Array: pins on socket, rather than processor. • Personal Grid Array: pins on CPU itself. • The socket number determines how many pins there are.
CPU PGA Socket LGA Socket
BIOS • A ROM chip that contains programming to enable the CPU to communicate with devices. • Contains code for PC to operate POST
CMOS Battery • Provides constant support to keep track of internal clock • Can fail gradually: noticeable if: • you are prompted to enter in time when you boot PC. • PC’s clock is running slow.
Jumpers/ DIP Switches • Small pins that have a plastic cap around them, that allow the computer to break an electrical current. • Features can be enabled or disabled by shifting the plastic cap. • DIP Switch is a set of switches that enable functionality on a computer.
Questions • 3) What Bus Architecture supports 32 bit cards and transfers information at 33 MHz? • A. ISA • B. EISA • C. AGP • D. PCI • 4) This type of Bus Architecture is only used by video adapters and is being phased out in favor of PCIe • A. PCI • B. NIC • C. AGP • D. USB
Power Supply Overview • Used to convert the Alternating Current (AC) of the electrical outlet to the Direct Current (DC) needed by the PC components. • Switches the AC input into the proper DC voltage output (3.3v, 5v, or 12v) needed by the different components of your system. • Rated by Wattage (Power) – Product of Voltage (Pressure) and Amps (Current). (Watts = Volts x Amps)
Power Supply Usage • Power usage varies by system. • Standard user systems average between 300-450W. • Gamer and higher-end systems are typically 400 – 800W+. • Add 30% to rough estimate of Wattage usage.
Power Supply Standardization • ATX-based power supplies – ATX standards for cases, motherboards, etc. • Standardized, keyed connectors - make it difficult to connect the wrong items. • Industry standards allow consumers to have many choices for a replacement power supply.
Common Power Supply Connectors • 20+4 Pin connector is the main motherboard power connector. • This connection can also have four pins removed and/or not included to fit 20-pin P1 motherboard connections. • 6-Pin PCI-e connector. Used by high-end video cards using PCI-e slots. • SATA 15 Pin connector used for SATA hard drives
Power Supply Connectors Continued • 4 Pin Floppy connector for connection to a floppy drive. (outdated) • 4-Pin Motherboard/PSU power connector. • 4-Pin Molex connector used for IDE devices
Power Supply Issues • Single handedly the most failure-prone component of any PC. • Deals with first rush of AC power input every time the computer is turned on. • Symptoms: • Stalled cooling fan(s). • Burning smell prior to shut down. • Random rebooting. • Failures in Windows with no apparent reasons.
Power Supplies - Other • Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) • Provides small amount of emergency back up power in case of power failure. • Modular Power Supply • Flexibility to remove or add connectors when needed. Less clutter, improved airflow. • Overload Protection/Surge Protectors • Protective measures to ensure the safety of the system due to excessive incoming power (AC) surge. Usually via fuse or circuit breaker.
Power Supply Questions • 5) The output voltages of a PC power supply are in the form of _____ . • AC Current • DC Current • Amperage • Watts • 6) What are the standard input voltages for power supplies? Select all that apply: • 110v DC • 110v AC • 220v DC • 220v AC
Cases • Cases are primarily differentiated based on size: • Desktop Computers • Micro Desktop vs. Normal Desktop • Tower Units • All-In-One Computers • Laptop Computers • Tablets • Smart Phones
Desktop • Monitor sits on desk with medium sized “tower” either below on the floor or next to the monitor on desk. • Found extensively in business world • Pros: • Relatively cheap. • Familiarity puts less knowledgeable users at ease. • Cons: • Limited mobility.
Micro Desktops • Very compact case. • Fits only one or two drive bays. • Often comes with power supply. • Pros: • Portability • Inexpensive • Cons: • Require special compact parts (motherboard, power supply, CPU, etc.).