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Proprietary Parts


1boredguy
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I just found out that Dell Dimension workstations use proprietary power supplies. Now I have to return my ordered PSU to Tiger, and wait for slo-mo Dell to ship out a weaker, yet more expensive, replacement. I was wondering what other value added resellors are customizing thier workstations to get us stuck in ordering thier replacement parts (and what parts are they).

Anyone have experiences/tips to share?

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Most vendors are known to do things like this. Dell isn't really all that bad compared to some IBM's I've seen... Those used custom power supplies with weird shapes to fit, a custom connector for the case's buttons on the motherboard and all.

Your best bet might have been to keep the new (and decent) PSU and get a new case with it - one that'll fit "normal" parts. Many mfg's PSUs suck anyways, and if the old one broke, chances are the new one will too (it could be that they're using unreliable parts). I'm having some issues with the PSU of my HP right now, it likes to turn off randomly for no reason, and when it does it, there's almost nothing to make it turn back on, except waiting (no overheating, no electrical problems or anything). It's supposedly quite overkill for the system it runs (lots of amps where needed), but it started doing it after I added a new HD... Ended up swapping it momentarily with another one I got on hand and everything works. I'm not even going to bother calling it in... I'll just get a nice one instead (thankfully it uses normal ATX ones).

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there are a few places you can get adapters to plug atx psu's into dell motherboards.

I'm going to assume you verified that the output of the non dell PSU was different than the dell pus. Most of the dimensions I've dealt with were standard atx but the optiplex line was proprietary.

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Well, Dells are based on PC architecture too, which means they use the same voltages (+12v, +5v, +3.3v, and -12v.) as a standard ATX system, although the pinouts may be slightly different.

An easier way would be to get an adapter like http://www.endpcnoise.com/cgi-bin/e/std/sku=dellconverter or cut and splice the wires, as there are pinouts for Dell and standard connectors available everywhere on the Internet and all you need to do is match the voltages.

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I thought it was the PSU's case which didn't fit... So they're using a proprietary connector for the motherboard? Wow. Didn't expect that at all. We've got a bunch of Dells at work but not like I bother to peek inside 'em for fun, but now I just might out of curiosity next time one breaks.

The adapter might be a good option after all, I wouldn't want to change the motherboard for that (have to buy another copy of OS, might need a new case, ...) That really sucks. Guess I'm never buying a Dell now!

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