Vanne's new XP athlon box.

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade Worklogs' started by Vanne, Mar 6, 2021.

  1. Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    So after coming to terms with the fact that Compaq EN sff deskpro isnt going to work Midi wise, i was just messing around with the ECS K7VTA3 (V6.0) yep, no 1.5v AGP slot in this one, and chucked the Inno 3D Ti4200 in it with my FM A801 sound card, and then installed win ME.. you know what? It all works perfect...
    the processor in there is a socket 462 Athlon 2000+ which runs at 1663Mhz, is a little quick for my likings for this box, but if i set the jumpers to 100fsb, instead of 133, it runs at a very nice 1250mhz.. which is pretty good. The dividers maintain the pci busses at proper speed.

    As it has 5 PCI slots, ill probably fill 2 of them with Voodoo2 12mb cards, one with audio card, and one with a TV card (winfast XP2000, which has a booktree chipset.)

    The main drive is a 120GB (partitioned to dos at 40GB) SSD. I figure that will probably be enough. lol. I have an older 60gb ssd that i was going to use, but its in my old LAN shuttle box, or so i found..

    I just ordered a new case to house this in as my desk is just an utter mess atm, crap everywhere.. Picked up a Cooler Master Q500L and a new PSU to power this stuff. The 850W silversone noise wind tunnel is way overkill for this setup and waaaay too noisy.

    mb-q500l-380x380-1-hover.png
    and a yumcha 550w psu. (i dont really like the case that much, its just that it was cheap at 50 bucks, including delivery today) I would have prefered a much smaller box, alas, this what was available at under 50 bucks oz.

    On a good note, the Ti4200 works PERFECT and have put it through a few obligatory sessions of UT.

    s-l1600.jpg
    Ill be meshing this setup with a brand new set of Alienware mouse and keyboard (yep from my newly delivered box) as I absolutely love these at this price point.

    R093a8c31949e9322f819ed5789bdf258.jpg

    Ill be attaching my Roland SC55 module to this setup, directly plugged in through the Joystick port.

    fm801_IC.jpg

    I do have a few questions in how to setup the SC55 with this? after connecting the midi plugs and the Joystick board.. should it /just/ work, or do i have to install a FM synth driver? (i was thinking the FM synth is done by the SC55?)

    maxresdefault (1).jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2021
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  2. Pierre32

    Pierre32 Member

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    The SC-55 should Just Work as long as your sound card has MPU-401 capability on the joystick port. In DOS you would just send your MIDI to port 330. In Windows, Control Panel -> Multimedia -> MIDI tab and make sure your sound card's MIDI port is the selected output device.

    [edit] Actually are those control panel directions still accurate for XP? I forget, but probably.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2021
  3. BiggusDickus

    BiggusDickus Member

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    Is Midi actually useful on such a modern machine? I thought it became irrelevant on anything past a Pentium MMX?
     
  4. Pierre32

    Pierre32 Member

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  5. OP
    OP
    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    It's running winME. Sound card is from 2000, as is the vid card. The only semi modern thing on this build is the mobo/CPU. Which I might remedy with a slot A thunderbird board.. though I haven't had much luck with older hardware.. a lot of my old boards are non booting now.

    edit. lol the mobo is from 2004.. makes it 17 years old.. id say thats geriatric enough ;) and the CPU was released in 2001. yah.. deffo retro..
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2021
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  6. Pierre32

    Pierre32 Member

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    Ah. Just scanned the thread to see where I picked up XP... oh yeah it was the title :D
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Lol.. yeah I wanted to get something going that wasnt that temperamental. Though I agree, this build is a clocked a bit too fast for my likings. Maybe this board will support a thunderbird 800 or 900 socket 462 chip?? Nope... Apperently only supports 1.0ghz thunderbird at the lowest...

    Hmm maybe I'll see if I can under lock this chip to 900mhz...???
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2021
  8. cbjaust

    cbjaust Member

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    See if you can track down a Geode NX 1250 or 1500. They're thoroughbred b cores on 133MHz fsb at 667 and 1000MHz respectively.
     
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  9. OP
    OP
    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Yay!! Just picked up a A0900AMT3B.
    Thunderbird 200fsb CPU..
    That will be perfect.. and best of all, the board does support it. .... Apperently...

    31GdoyjRgiL._AC_SL1500_.jpg

    T H U N D E R B I R D !!!! Hehehe..

    Its been a while for me though, the jumpers on the board say FSB 100/133/166 the Thunderbird runs at an FSB of 200... what do you set the jumper to? is it 100? something or rather dubble??? cant really remember how that went?? its only been 20 years.. lolol
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2021
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  10. cbjaust

    cbjaust Member

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    100MHz for Thunderbird. I have the same CPU:
     

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  11. OP
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    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Okiedokies, that's perfect :) I wonder if I'll notice the slow down from xp2000+ (currently clocked at 1250mhz) to the 900mhz thunderbird? Lolol
     
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  12. baronbaldric

    baronbaldric Member

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    1. About MIDI modules under Windows
    Final Fantasy VII PC (1998 release) was heavily advertising its use of MIDI under Windows. Their module of choice for marketing was a Yamaha, but I bet SC-55 sounds as good. I tried it with a Yamaha sound font, was fun.

    2. Did you look into the CPU 5V rail load requirement at all? According to this Socket draw a lot of power off the 5V rail in some cases:

    3. Awesome build overall!
     
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  13. Grant

    Grant Member

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    The Thunderbirds can be multiplier unlocked by using pencil graphite (the "pencil trick") to bridge the L1 pads on the package. I have a 1000MHz (100*10) TBird that I did this on, but it runs fine at 133*10 even today :)
     
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  14. OP
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    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Thx, hmm no not really.. I just recieved the PSU last night in the post.

    16155209260363394576970818971665.jpg
    No idea why the image is upside down Miss Jane.

    Hope that will be okay. The 900mhz thunderbird has a tdp of 50w. The ti4200 is 35w tdp... Lol gonna be close.

    Esp when you add the 12mb voodoo2, that's 15w tdp. ... Thanks again for the heads up, completely slipped my train of thought there..
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2021
  15. OP
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    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Thx Grant, but I specifically went for a 900mhz thunderbird as that is at the upper limit of the period specific I was chasing for winME. Lol.. I haven't even considered dual booting this box.. I guess this could also qualify for some early spec winXP games...

    What I really kinda dig about this setup is that it's at least 10 years younger than the Compaq setup, but still runs the same cards/software which will be much less of a headache when it comes to stuff dying. (Which I've had a gut full of lately)

    As a nice added touch, I just found the Cold Cathode I bought in Adelaide about 16 years ago, which I intended to use back then in my MK Patrol's engine bay...lolol.. never used it, and it's new in its box.. think I'll use it to light up the show in the box old skool style.. lol probably pretty fitting as that's what this tube was build for originally.. lol (that's if it works after this long hibernation)

    16155170294676572792586522085733.jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2021
  16. rugger

    rugger Member

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    Yeah, an old ATX power supply, retrofitted with new capacitors if needed, would work better on this setup.

    The heavy load on the 5V rail, and light load on the 12V rail, is not what newer PSUs are designed for, even if it is in theory possible. This tends to manifest in a low 5V rail and excessively high 12V rail.
     
  17. OP
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    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Ive got an old Silverstone one, but it's frikking loud as!!
     
  18. Mistikal

    Mistikal Member

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    Replace the fan with some low noise brand new fans, they're hiding inside the PSU after all - nobody will know ;)
     
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  19. OP
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    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Can't really, it's a really small but heavy duty fans, so it will always be loud.
    IMG_20210312_182103.jpg

    And here are s few pics of the new Thunderbird box..
    IMG_20210312_181527.jpg

    IMG_20210312_181546.jpg

    IMG_20210312_181536.jpg

    Kinda happy with how neat all that turned out. Things used to be really messy with cables everywhere in the old days. One thing missing off the mobo is the usb onboard connection, so that will dirty it up a bit.

    Edit, id just like to comment on the parts in this box.. All of them look spanking new.. not sure how that happened, but there you have it. On my Compaq box, you open it and you *KNOW* your looking at a 20 year old box... this looks brand new... Id say that ECS board was NOS.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2021
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  20. OP
    OP
    Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    and then just for shits and giggles. I connected the SC55 to the setup... was scratching my head a bit initially.... until I figured out (thx Vogons) that I had the Midi in end going into the SC55.. lolol.. that was quickly corrected and now listening to some serious Monkey Island bliss on the Roland... works perfect.... starting to like this box a lot... :D

    midi.jpg

    IMG_20210312_203440.jpg
    (You'll need to excuse the mess...computer stuff building in progress.. lolol)
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2021

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