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dead board?

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    dead board?

    A while ago I bought a "huge lot of pc parts" auction and got it stupid cheap and in the boards was a Tyan S1668 motherboard. The rest was scrapped as junk but I bought the lot for this one board. Mostly because I have a "thing" for dual cpu setups.

    Long story short it wouldnt post so I shelved it.

    last week I finally got a port 80 diagnostic card and decided to give it another whirl. I get nothing. The board will come on and thats it. the port 80 cards reads "- -" and just looks at you. I do have a working Tyan S1682 which uses the same chipset but is instead dual slot 1. It even supports the slot1 to socket 8 converters. I wouldnt expect the bios to be interchangeable but would at least TRY to do something. I tried to swap the chips. I get nothing on the port 80 card. not even "- -"

    Basically I'm asking everyone, is there a snowballs chance in hell that the board might indeed work, its just the bios? Or should I put the board on the wall of pretty things to look at but are dead?
    It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

    #2
    There is in fact a very high probability that it's the BIOS. I don't have a diagnostic card, but I've seen many boards power on and refuse to actually do anything beyond power up the fans/etc. when the cause was known to be a misflashed or damaged BIOS. I've lost at least four machines that way...
    More commonly known as "Yushatak" - www.yushatak.com
    Focused on 486 and Pentium Machines
    I collect All-In-One PCs and Keyboard PCs, especially Compaq.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by luckybob View Post
      A while ago I bought a "huge lot of pc parts" auction and got it stupid cheap and in the boards was a Tyan S1668 motherboard. The rest was scrapped as junk but I bought the lot for this one board. Mostly because I have a "thing" for dual cpu setups.

      Long story short it wouldnt post so I shelved it.

      last week I finally got a port 80 diagnostic card and decided to give it another whirl. I get nothing. The board will come on and thats it. the port 80 cards reads "- -" and just looks at you. I do have a working Tyan S1682 which uses the same chipset but is instead dual slot 1. It even supports the slot1 to socket 8 converters. I wouldnt expect the bios to be interchangeable but would at least TRY to do something. I tried to swap the chips. I get nothing on the port 80 card. not even "- -"

      Basically I'm asking everyone, is there a snowballs chance in hell that the board might indeed work, its just the bios? Or should I put the board on the wall of pretty things to look at but are dead?
      Have you tried the suspect BIOS chip in your known working board? Also, I'd go over that problem mobo with a magnifing glass checking the lands, runs, and all surface mounted components - especially the caps. Then hang it on the wall.
      Surely not everyone was Kung-Fu fighting

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        #4
        Did you check to see if all the appropriate power lights are lit on the POST card and that the OSC is functioning and that it's not caught in a reset loop?

        Diagnostics can tell you a lot if you observe. Does the card work right on another board?
        Legacy Computers and Parts

        Sales of, parts for, and repairs to, Vintage and Legacy computers.

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          #5
          Hook up a PC speaker and check it's beep codes.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Agent Orange View Post
            Have you tried the suspect BIOS chip in your known working board? Also, I'd go over that problem mobo with a magnifing glass checking the lands, runs, and all surface mounted components - especially the caps. Then hang it on the wall.
            Nothing visible. The good bios does nothing in the board. I'll check the other way around here in a minute. There are only 3 electrolytic caps on the whole board and they are in good condition. The VRM's are BRAND NEW and I have tried different vrms as well.

            Originally posted by Druid6900 View Post
            Did you check to see if all the appropriate power lights are lit on the POST card and that the OSC is functioning and that it's not caught in a reset loop?

            Diagnostics can tell you a lot if you observe. Does the card work right on another board?
            card works perfect in the slot 1 board. The power lights that are supposed to be on are on. I dont know how to test if its in a reset loop though. If that requires a scope I dont have one.

            Originally posted by TheLazy1 View Post
            Hook up a PC speaker and check it's beep codes.
            the diagnostic card has a speaker on it that connects to the speaker on the motherboard and I dont get any beep codes.

            Damn. I really liked this board too. had a WONDERFUL layout and was ATX!

            *sigh*

            edit:

            as for the led's on the post card. the voltage indicators are all on and bright. reset is on but dim. frame is on. irdy is on but dim as well as clk
            Last edited by luckybob; February 24, 2011, 10:05 PM.
            It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

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              #7
              Sounds as if the BIOS is bricked, at least if the voltages check out and the CPU(s) are known-good.

              That shouldn't be too hard to remedy, I'd think...
              Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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                #8
                I also could be a problem in the chipset.

                If you really want to test the board look around and find someone that can flash a new bios for you. If you provide the chip I bet they would do it for $5 or $10. I have seen these kinds of offers on ebay. You just need to provide the bin file for the flash.

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                  #9
                  I have a flasher that I'll sell - it's brand new - for not too much. PM me if you're interested. I bought it to fix my BookPC and it refused to flash the class of chips I needed it to - or I bought a lot of 10 screwed up chips.. heh.. PM me if you're interested and we'll talk price/etc.
                  More commonly known as "Yushatak" - www.yushatak.com
                  Focused on 486 and Pentium Machines
                  I collect All-In-One PCs and Keyboard PCs, especially Compaq.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    You can also hot swap BIOS chips and flash it in another working machine.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Make sure the BIOS is shadowed on the machine in question if you're going to try that - otherwise the machine will obviously have some trouble.

                      Also, some flash software (most of it, in fact) checks the motherboard to make sure the software you're flashing is compatible.. so it may not be possible depending on how picky the flashing software is.
                      More commonly known as "Yushatak" - www.yushatak.com
                      Focused on 486 and Pentium Machines
                      I collect All-In-One PCs and Keyboard PCs, especially Compaq.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by TheLazy1 View Post
                        You can also hot swap BIOS chips and flash it in another working machine.
                        I just put the chip in my EPROM programmer (with an adapter if it's PLCC) and do it the old-fashioned way.
                        Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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