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Thread: IBM PS/2 Model P70 386 with no display

  1. #1

    Default IBM PS/2 Model P70 386 with no display

    Hi folks!

    Today I scored an IBM PS/2 Model P70. It's a luggable 386 with a plasma display. Well, I should have inspected it much better before taking it home, because as it turns out that while it powers on just fine but there's no display. The unit beeps three times at startup: one long, two short. According to the service manual, that POST code means a problem with the Plasma Display Card (or, less likely, the power supply or system board, but Plasma Display is bold and listed as #1.) So it looks like I got a dud

    I figured I'd just ask here if anyone has any experience with these. Is it a lost cause? Should I strip it for parts, or is there hope to get it running?

    -Twylo
    Seth Morabito
    Commodore and DEC Enthusiast
    Poulsbo, WA, USA

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Deventer, the Netherlands
    Posts
    51

    Default

    I also had a problem with the display card. I fixed my problem by replacing a bad capacitor on the video card. From the outside the capacitor looked fine, but video card worked again after I replaced the capacitor.

  3. #3

    Default

    Hi juicylemon,

    Thanks for that tip, it's worth a shot! Do you remember which one it was? Did you test its ESR and find a marginal reading, or did you just replace all the electrolytics?

    -Twylo
    Seth Morabito
    Commodore and DEC Enthusiast
    Poulsbo, WA, USA

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Deventer, the Netherlands
    Posts
    51

    Default

    The floppy drive was broken before the video card stopped working and I read that the floppy drive was well known for its failing capacitors, so that's the reason why I tried to replace a capacitor on the video card as well. I have no means to check the ESR of the capacitor, so I started with replacing one. I think I was lucky that it was indeed the bad one. Unfortunately I do not remember which one it was. I think it would be better if I have replaced them all at that time, but up to today, it still works.

  5. #5

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    Good news! It's fully working now!

    All I had to do was remove the display card (which necessitated removing the whole logic board, but that's another story) and clean the contacts. I used some Deoxit Gold contact cleaner, put it back together, and it's happy again. I didn't even need to replace any capacitors.

    -Twylo
    Seth Morabito
    Commodore and DEC Enthusiast
    Poulsbo, WA, USA

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Deventer, the Netherlands
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Nice, Congratulations!

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