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Hacking an HP Z800 motherboard into a standard PC case

Started by Andy Brown, November 01, 2014, 04:53:46 am

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Marco Silva

Quote from: ASELERT on August 05, 2015, 02:25:29 am
Thank you so much guys...  ;D

Indeed Marco, I just have found a Supermicro 1366 for a low price (even if it is higher than the Z800), which will be able to support 2x Xeon 5670 + 3x GTX780Ti...
Because first I don't have Xeon 55xx here to test and flash the BIOS and second, following what you said Marco about the "sometimes it boot, sometimes not" lol, I prefer to found a stable solution  :-\

So, I will keep you in touch for the evolution of the machine  ;)

Talk soon, thank you again!


You could buy one xeon 55XX for cheap..they go for peanuts...and give it a try, maybe you would be surprised, i mean when i started my build there wasn't much information at all, and for the amount of money i originally spent that was 120$ for a couple of X5650 and 100$ for the board i took a gambling and i wasn't disappointed at all. 

you've already bought the board, now you're going to spend a lot of money  in another used/abused workstation board...damn for that amount of money i would have built a brand new X99 with an overclocked 5820K and would have a really sweet rig that would run lap's around that system in 90% of the situations and with 2 years warranty  ;)


ASELERT

August 06, 2015, 03:03:49 am #196 Last Edit: August 06, 2015, 03:06:19 am by ASELERT
I know it Marco, but I'm in a context to be pressed by time  :P
The HP Z800 was my first goal but finally when I see the barrier to have a full stable system... It's for my society, not for me, so...
I'm pretty sure that with a correct flash etc I have chance to work with my dual Xeon 5670 and my 48Gb ECC RAM, but the doubt is still here. And even cheap (I known it) the Xeon 55xx will take time to come. :/

As you said with the Supermicro MBD-X8DAH-F-B, there is no hack and the full price (inclu taxes and shipment) was 210â,¬, so cheap, and the same as HP Z800. Re-buy, re-sell, it's a "white operation" at the end  ;)

The board:
http://www.rdrelectronics.com/russ/apr14/cpu1.JPG

Cheers

John Erik Krische

August 09, 2015, 07:47:40 am #197 Last Edit: August 09, 2015, 07:51:20 am by John Erik Krische
well i got the board inside of my nanoxia deep silence 6. I had a few problems, none really stopped me though my first problem was drilling the holes. the first one went fine, but the second one was slanted because my drill is too fat. i aso accidentally drilled into the board. but it only drilled into the pad around the screwhole, so i should be fine. i decided i shouldent try drilling anymore holes so i used a standoff and a ziptie to secure the top of the board.next i had the same problem as mentioned inn the original article. my pcie cards needed to be bent to fit. but aside frm that i am fine. I am typing this on my "Mostly" completed system now in fact. it is runnning lubuntu, as i didnt know windows home didnt support dual processors.
currently i have a rev 3 motherboard, nanoxia deep sinlence 6, gtx 970, 600 watt thermaltake(will be upgraded to a 1000 watt corsair), dual e5530(will be upgraded to x5680s), two cooler master t4, wireless card, combo usb 3 and sata 6 card(running a 120gb 850 evo and a wd blue 1tb).

JonMS

Quote from: ASELERT on August 06, 2015, 03:03:49 am
I know it Marco, but I'm in a context to be pressed by time  :P
The HP Z800 was my first goal but finally when I see the barrier to have a full stable system... It's for my society, not for me, so...
I'm pretty sure that with a correct flash etc I have chance to work with my dual Xeon 5670 and my 48Gb ECC RAM, but the doubt is still here. And even cheap (I known it) the Xeon 55xx will take time to come. :/

As you said with the Supermicro MBD-X8DAH-F-B, there is no hack and the full price (inclu taxes and shipment) was 210â,¬, so cheap, and the same as HP Z800. Re-buy, re-sell, it's a "white operation" at the end  ;)

The board:
http://www.rdrelectronics.com/russ/apr14/cpu1.JPG

Cheers

I highly doubt that board is SLI certified so you will not be able to run three 780 ti connected to one another.

ASELERT

Thank you for the advice  ;)
But in fact, it's for CUDA computing, so no SLI is required  :)

Attilio Fiandrotti

Here are more pics showing my Z800 MB fitted into a Thermaltake Armor+ VH6000 case with some fancy blue leds. The PSU is a TDPS-825AB from an xw serie desktop. The setup includes the temp sensor, firewire, usb connections to the front panel which silence many POST warnings about missing cables.  Now, only a back panel is missing, plus some fans providing input so to silence the POST warning about missing memory and rear fans. Job almost done :-)

Andy Brown

Quote from: Attilio Fiandrotti on September 07, 2015, 01:32:39 am
Here are more pics showing my Z800 MB fitted into a Thermaltake Armor+ VH6000 case with some fancy blue leds. The PSU is a TDPS-825AB from an xw serie desktop. The setup includes the temp sensor, firewire, usb connections to the front panel which silence many POST warnings about missing cables.  Now, only a back panel is missing, plus some fans providing input so to silence the POST warning about missing memory and rear fans. Job almost done :-)


Nice job, especially with the cables. The motherboard itself looks like a tight fit into the case. Did you drill your own holes in the motherboard tray to get it to line up correctly?
It's worse than that, it's physics Jim!

Attilio Fiandrotti

Quote from: Andy Brown on September 09, 2015, 10:01:36 am
Quote from: Attilio Fiandrotti on September 07, 2015, 01:32:39 am
Here are more pics showing my Z800 MB fitted into a Thermaltake Armor+ VH6000 case with some fancy blue leds. The PSU is a TDPS-825AB from an xw serie desktop. The setup includes the temp sensor, firewire, usb connections to the front panel which silence many POST warnings about missing cables.  Now, only a back panel is missing, plus some fans providing input so to silence the POST warning about missing memory and rear fans. Job almost done :-)


Nice job, especially with the cables. The motherboard itself looks like a tight fit into the case. Did you drill your own holes in the motherboard tray to get it to line up correctly?


Thanks a lot: none of the original mainboard holes matched those on the case. First, I made myself a paper mask where i marked with a pencil the position of the holes in the MB, then I taped the mask to the case and drilled the metal. The result was a more or less good match of the 6 holes.

Now, this evening I fixed also the issue with the bios complaining about the missing memory fan. The original Z800 case had 2 rear fans, and the bios will complain if at least one of the TACH1 and TACH2 signals is absent. As my case has only room for one (big) fan, I modified the fan connector so that the TACH signal is split and reported to both TACH1 and TACH2 on the mainboard. The attached picture is taken from the rear, through an empty expansion slot, and shows the hacked fan connector (did something similar with the DASH connector) to silence another warning). FYI, the rear fan conn pinout is GND, +5V, TACH1, PWM1, TACH2,PWM2 from pin 1 to 6, where pin 1 is that closer to the expansion slots.Notice how pins 3 and 5 are connected together, whereas pins 4 and 6 are left unconnected as my rear fan is not PWM capable.

Attilio Fiandrotti

And this is the adaptor I built to connect a standard 4-pin fan to the memory fan socket. it takes +12V, GND, two TACH signals and one PWM (one is left unused) from the mainboard. The two TACH inputs to the mainboard are driven by the same TACH output of the fan. That was enough to silence the BIOS warning about the missing  mem fan. And this was the last warning: now I boot straight into the OS without need to press F1 no more :-)

malefic

September 25, 2015, 08:22:57 am #204 Last Edit: September 25, 2015, 11:20:28 am by malefic
Quote from: Attilio Fiandrotti on September 11, 2015, 03:29:24 pm
Quote from: Andy Brown on September 09, 2015, 10:01:36 am
Quote from: Attilio Fiandrotti on September 07, 2015, 01:32:39 am
Here are more pics showing my Z800 MB fitted into a Thermaltake Armor+ VH6000 case with some fancy blue leds. The PSU is a TDPS-825AB from an xw serie desktop. The setup includes the temp sensor, firewire, usb connections to the front panel which silence many POST warnings about missing cables.  Now, only a back panel is missing, plus some fans providing input so to silence the POST warning about missing memory and rear fans. Job almost done :-)


Nice job, especially with the cables. The motherboard itself looks like a tight fit into the case. Did you drill your own holes in the motherboard tray to get it to line up correctly?


Thanks a lot: none of the original mainboard holes matched those on the case.


With a case that supports eatx boards 2 holes will align, but it requires you to align the first pcie slot correctly.

Here is my case to add to the list....nzxt phantom red! Doesn't  really fit you have to make it fit :)

Attilio Fiandrotti

The next step in my building project is doing a proper shield for the mainboard: here is a preliminary drawing in ODG format (OpenOffice-Draw) for a shield that fits my case. I had problems in printing exactly the same size it should be on screen, but a test on paper fits almost perfectly. Next step is drilling a metal or plastic plate according to the markings. Feel free to correct or integrate.


Attilio Fiandrotti

Quote from: malefic on September 29, 2015, 06:09:35 am
I did mine with PCB board  8)

PIC

PIC


If you haven't drilled the holes yet, you could test my scheme: there is a hidden layer showing all expected connectors quotes as measured on my MB.

Attilio Fiandrotti

I found out that the previous version of the drawings were slightly inaccurate (a couple of mm overall, which is however enough to prevent the shield to match the sockets): here is a revision of the drawings which should hopefully be more accurate.

Attilio Fiandrotti

This is the revised version of the shield drawings: now all the slits with the sockets and the results is as in the attached pics. The next step is carving out a mask from a piece of transparent plexiglas to match on the side panel :-)