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This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

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Unboxed computing

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    Unboxed computing

    Hey, who needs a case/box/chassis for your computer? I just test installed a few years old Pentium II system on my desk, and it works fine with the motherboard on a foam mat, power supply loose on the desk (after changing its internal fan even!) and FDD/HDD/CD also loose.

    *wishes he had a digital camera to take a picture*

    Now, I've verified this motherboard works, so I'll replace a similar one inside a box with this and possibly reinstall the HDD in the box. I remember some student had a computer in parts mounted directly on the wall, and people thought it was insane. As long as everything is grounded and nothing will interfer with the parts or electronics, I believe it is OK. Maybe one can have a glass cover over the motherboard to dust protect it.
    Anders Carlsson

    #2
    It depends on the motherboard, but this would work fine for most older systems.

    I wouldn't try it with some of the newer stuff just because heat generation/dissipation becomes a factor. Most "modern" cases are designed for airflow over the motherboard to keep things cool.

    Now you have to try using floppies without their jackets!

    Erik
    The Vintage Computer and Gaming Marketplace
    The Vintage Computer

    Comment


      #3
      Did'ja ever mount a naked floppy? -- The Hacker's Test:

      http://user.cs.tu-berlin.de/~socrates/infoTest.html

      --T
      Teach your children how to think, not what, and hold 'em close, not tight.
      _____________________________________________

      Please visit the Vintage-Computer Wiki. Contributers welcome.

      Comment


        #4
        Newest unqualified task performed by me: swapping two PSU fans with eachother - a good, silent one from an AT with a noisy, slow one from an ATX. Both have a two-pin connector and are of about the same specs (12V, 0.15 vs 0.24A). One had an extra grounding plate while the other has a separate fan regulator/sensor.

        Both PSUs work afterwards (no shocks, odd voltages or burn smell). The old AT one got a lot of extra, potentially hazardous cabling inside, but it is supposed to be recycled. I guess this is the kind of things one shouldn't tell about to other people if it seems to work anyway.
        Anders Carlsson

        Comment


          #5
          Heat.

          We're having a little problem at the moment, 2 or 3 PCs closed down every week due to hazard from overheating. The make I won't mention, because they are an excellent build and I like them.

          The PCs are shutting down with a warning overheating message because they are in wooden furniture with only very very small air vents. Can we get the right dept to do anything? What do you think?

          As the PCs are so new, the PC co is coming out to each one. Soon they'll say something I reckon.

          Perhaps just opening the boxes would be the answer!


          It was a long standing joke in my IT dept that as soon as a PC came in, the box was opened and thats how it stayed until they went out again!!!!

          I have seen an article last year about someone who made their own liquid cooling for an overclocked PC!!!

          .T.I.M
          *********************************
          WHAT A LONG STRANGE TRIP ITS BEEN
          *********************************

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Heat.

            Originally posted by TIML

            It was a long standing joke in my IT dept that as soon as a PC came in, the box was opened and thats how it stayed until they went out again!!!!
            Heh! I hardly ever see any of my boxes with all thier clothes on. (I musta taught my kids well, coz my son rarely keeps his covered either).
            I have seen an article last year about someone who made their own liquid cooling for an overclocked PC!!!

            .T.I.M
            Water cooled? Or are you refering to the liquid nitrogen cooling system? (That one even inspired a new High Tech Red Neck joke):

            http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...h+Red+Neck&f=1

            --T
            Teach your children how to think, not what, and hold 'em close, not tight.
            _____________________________________________

            Please visit the Vintage-Computer Wiki. Contributers welcome.

            Comment


              #7
              I remember seeing at a trade show, about 15 years ago, this display that had a working television half submerged in some kind of transparent liquid, that looked just like water.

              It was to be used to cool electronics.

              I wonder what happened with it?

              Chris
              The vic rocks!

              Comment


                #8
                Your son rarely keeps his what covered? :P (ok, I know you mean computer box).

                Seriously, in the company we bought a tailor-made Pentium 4 system one and a half years ago. It worked fine until we tried some graphics applications. Despite only having a GeForce 4FX, it developed enough heat to start the overheat siren. After adding an extra case fan on the back, we have reduced or eliminated the problem.
                Anders Carlsson

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by carlsson
                  Your son rarely keeps his what covered? :P (ok, I know you mean computer box).
                  Ummm...err...ahhh...you know...
                  Seriously, in the company we bought a tailor-made Pentium 4 system one and a half years ago. It worked fine until we tried some graphics applications. Despite only having a GeForce 4FX, it developed enough heat to start the overheat siren. After adding an extra case fan on the back, we have reduced or eliminated the problem.
                  So it was the graphics card that was causing it to overheat? Don't they make little fans that mount directly to the graphics card? (I think they do...)

                  --T
                  Teach your children how to think, not what, and hold 'em close, not tight.
                  _____________________________________________

                  Please visit the Vintage-Computer Wiki. Contributers welcome.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    So it was the graphics card that was causing it to overheat? Don't they make little fans that mount directly to the graphics card? (I think they do...)

                    --T
                    Yep, and heat sinks for the things too.

                    Those gaming pc's must really run hot

                    Chris
                    The vic rocks!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Err, well.. maybe the graphics card itself doesn't get too hot (and yes, it has a passive heat sink), but apparently it was what brought the computer over the edge. One can raise the warning and shutdown temperature in BIOS, but on the other hand people say that a Pentium 4 system should not run very warm at all, so better try to solve a problem than ignoring it.

                      My Athlon XP at home easily reaches both 50, 60 and maybe even 70C on extreme cases, and that is with integrated (but fan cooled) graphics. Now it was a while ago I tried to play some game, which is when it typically happens. Maybe I should go after work tomorrow and see if the local surplus store still has some PC games in stock; they advertised this week about various old Sim games (Sim City, Sim Ant etc) for $5 each...
                      Anders Carlsson

                      Comment


                        #12
                        re see-through enclosures for computers

                        way back in early history, prior to the fall of Babylon, (1976 and '77), I had a few computere stores, and had a great idea. I got a local glass maker to make me glass tops for the IMSAI 8080 and the Altair 8800. (I wsasn't an Altair dealer, so sold them to owners and to dealsers, at a discount. They wsere made of plexiglass and formed into the exact form factor for the original metal tops. I had contracted for 100 of each style and sold them all within a month If I remember rightly, I grossed an averageof about $22.00 per top, Not bad for beiginners!

                        Ray
                        Pioneer Purveyor of Personal Processing Power

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by carlsson
                          local surplus store ... advertised this week about various old Sim games (Sim City, Sim Ant etc) for $5 each...
                          In the end, I bought Sim City (the 166 MHz CD-ROM Enhanced edition) for 39 SEK ($5) and a pool/snooker game for 25 SEK ($3).

                          It is quite funny to find newly packaged games which says "minimum requirement: IBM 286, 10 MB RAM" (Sim Ant) or IBM 386 for that matter. A few titles had a 486 DX/2 requirement and the two I got were recent enough to require Pentium class processors.

                          While we're into vintage computing here, I didn't fancy buying CD-ROM repackaged 286 DOS (?!) games for running on my Athlon XP computer. Maybe if I owned a genuine 286 or 386 class system...
                          Anders Carlsson

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Wooha! Sim City fully accepts my save files from thte Amiga version, something I think the EGA/VGA version didn't when I tried in the 90'ties. However, it runs blizzard fast on my computer and might not be quite as attractive as I once found it. Surely I will spend some more time to get re-acquainted however.

                            The pool game is really nice, and it included some video clips on how to play pool and a few trick shots, which the game allows you to try yourself too. So, now I know how to sink six balls into different pockets with one shot. At least in theory, on the computer if I don't move the aim of the cue at all.
                            Anders Carlsson

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