Reply 20 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

Pentium III - Slot 1 Build

Vital statistics:

1. CPU: Intel Pentium III 550MHz - SL3FJ - Costa Rica 512KB cache / 100MHz bus / 2.0V
2. Motherboard: LuckyStar 6VABX2 VER. 2.0 - Slot 1 - Chipset - VIA VT82C693 & VT82C596A / 1xAGP 2x / 5 PCI (4 bus master 1 slave) / 2 ISA / ATA 33
3. RAM: 384 MB - PC133 @ PC100 speed : 2X128MB PQI / 1x128MB IBM
4. VGA: Inno3D Geforce 2 Ti - 64MB - VGA/TV out
5. AUDIO: Diamond Aureal Vortex 2 Monster Sound MX300 - PCI
8. CD-ROM: ASUS QuieTrack 52X CD-S520/A
9. LAN: generic 10/100 Mbps
10. Mobile HDD rack 3.5/5.25
11. PSU: generic JNC Computer Corp. 235W
12. Cooling: Intel stock slot 1 cooler / Inno3D - DeepCool v50 / Enermax T.B Silence 80 mm
13. CASE: Generic ATX Case branded COMRACE ~ 1999
14. Less effort than the 5x86 build.


gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2nssk8l2a/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 17:33. Edited 3 times in total.

Reply 21 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

For the socket 7 build I had a lot to chose from 😁


1. ACorp 5ALi61 REV. D - Socket 7 - Chipset ALi M1542-A1/M1543C-A1
2. ZIDA-TOMATO BOARD - 5STXJ-98 REV. 1.02 - Socket 7 - Chipset Intel 430TX - 82439TX System Controller(MTXC) & 82371AB PCI ISA IDE Xcelerator (PIIX4)
3. LuckyStar 5V-1A VER. 2.0 - Socket 7- Chipset - VIA 82C585VPX & 82C586A
4. Epox EP58 MVP3C-M 100MHz Rev. 0.8 - Socket 7 - Chipset - VIA VT82C598MVP & VT82C586B


1. AMD K6-2 300MHz - AFR - 1998 -week 41
2. AMD K6-2 350MHz - AFR - 1999- week 21
3. AMD K6-2 400MHz - AFR - 1999- week 50
4. AMD K6-2 450MHz - AFX - 2000- week 02
5. Pentium 100MHz - SX963
6. Pentium 133MHz - SY022
7. Pentium 166MHz - SY037
8. Pentium 166MHz-MMX - SL27K
9. Cyrix 6x86MX PR233 188MHz

In the end I settled on a Super Socket 7 build using an AMD K6-2 CPU coupled with the ACorp 5ALi61 REV. D

What I liked about the socket 7 build was that I could use Intel and AMD CPU's if I wanted. I could use SDRAM or SIMM/EDO an AT or ATX PSU. A very versatile platform.

Upon closer inspection I found that the Epox EP58 MVP3C-M motherboard had a busted tranzistor which was branded 1P. At the moment of the assembly I didnt have a spare tranzistor. Later, just by sheer luck I found a suitable replacement from a ceased fan from a slot A heatsink. I made the transplant and the motherboard works 😁 This transitor was separated from its shell by the CPU clamp. Very good placemnt Mr. Engineer! Keep up the GOOD work....yeah right...😁

The last AT case I had was in bad shape. I had to make from scratch a POWER ON ATX compatible switch to fit into an AT compatible slot in the front bezel. I couldn't find a smaller one localy so I had to improvize 😁 All the switches from the local electronics shop were without release, meaning that once pressed they would not return back and after a few seconds the system would power down. All this trouble was also caused by the fact that I wanted to use an ATX PSU because I couldn't find a good AT PSU. To make things worse the prongs on which the switch had to be screwed were ripped off and I had to rebuild them. All in all it was worth the effort. The metal cover of the case was roughed up and I decided to wrap it up instead of painting it.

The V3 3000 received a fan for better cooling and all the parts for the build were cleaned to perfection using 99,9% isopropyl alcohol.

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/oo679ofs/

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/mmo3eebc/

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1perucwwy/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 17:34. Edited 4 times in total.

Reply 22 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

The K6-2 450MHz - Build

Vital statistics:

1. CPU: AMD K6-2 450AFX - 450MHz
2. Motherboard: ACorp 5ALi61 REV. D - Socket 7 -100MHz- Chipset ALi Alladin V - ALi M1542-A1/M1543C-A1 1AGP 2x/ 3 PCI / 3 ISA
3. RAM: : 2X128MB=256 MB - PC133 @ PC100
4. VGA: STB Systems Inc - Voodoo 3 3000 AGP 16MB Rev. C
5. AUDIO: Creative Sound Blaster AWE 64 GOLD ISA - CT 4390
6. HDD: FUJITSU 8.4GB - MPD3084AT - 5400RPM ATA 33 - montat cu distantiere in bay de 5.25"
7. FDD: Sony
8. CD-ROM: TOP-G 50X
9. LAN: TP-Link 10/100Mbps PCI Network Adapter TF-3200 - ip100A
10. PSU: Antec EA-380D Green - 380W 80+ Bronze
12. Cooling: Socket 7 heatsink with Scythe Mini Kaze 50x50x10mm 4500 rpm / V3 3000 - stock heatsink with Scythe Mini Kaze 50x50x10mm 4500 rpm
13. CASE: Generic AT Case branded 2 Net Computers, retrofitted with ATX switch.
14. Medium effort - smaller than the 5x86 build but greater than the Pentium III build

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2gh5azuzm/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 17:36. Edited 2 times in total.

Reply 23 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

All three together AMD 5x86,AMD K6-2 & PIII 😁

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/152hzwxb6/

Next will be the K7 slot A test. But for now I'll let you to digest the above photos 😀

A lot more to follow!

Sneak peak 😁


Pentium III feels the train is coming, bullet train that is 😁 (Commercial from 1999/2000 for the AMD Athlon Processor)



gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2v28fonfm/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 17:37. Edited 4 times in total.

Reply 24 of 823, by Brickpad

User metadata
Rank Member
Robert B wrote:

I was quite pissed for giving away my first PC back in '98 or '99. I was young and foolish 😁

Same here. I had a few PCs in the mid-90s, but the very first PC that really got me into the world of computers was my AMD 5x86 (ADW) setup. It originally came configured with 8MB of RAM, 810MB hard drive, 1.44MB and 1.2MB floppy drives, Trident TGUI9440 1MB PCI card, and Windows 95. I don't remember who I gave it to, but I am kicking myself to this day for giving it away. I've only recently found a couple of cases that matched the one mine came in.

Reply 25 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

@brickpad - Your system is quite close to the real one a use to have in 1996.The seed that started everything: AMD 5x86 ADW, Tomato board 4DPS SiS 496/497, 4MB SIMM FPM, 850MB Quantum Trailblazer, 1MB Cirrus Logic 54XX VGA(I dont remember the exact model) . In '98 I upgraded to 8MB, an LG 8160B CD-ROM, ESS 1868F soundcard and ISOTECH speakers. Man it was expensive 😁 Around then I changed my Tatung 14" monitor to a 15" Viewpoint.I really hated the LG-8160B as it only read silver CD's. Any other colour and it just would fail.

Actually the ESS 1868F soundcardin the 5x86 build is the exact one I bought in '98. I found it at my cousin's place 😀

If only I could find the picture with me and my budy in "98 when we had a lan party with Descent, Duke Nukem etc. The case was like the one in the 5x86 build but with pink accents 😁

Reply 26 of 823, by Brickpad

User metadata
Rank Member
Robert B wrote:

@brickpad - Your system is quite close to the real one a use to have in 1996.The seed that started everything: AMD 5x86 ADW, Tomato board 4DPS SiS 496/497, 4MB SIMM FPM, 850MB Quantum Trailblazer, 1MB Cirrus Logic 54XX VGA(I dont remember the exact model) . In '98 I upgraded to 8MB, an LG 8160B CD-ROM, ESS 1868F soundcard and ISOTECH speakers. Man it was expensive 😁 Around then I changed my Tatung 14" monitor to a 15" Viewpoint.I really hated the LG-8160B as it only read silver CD's. Any other colour and it just would fail.

Actually the ESS 1868F soundcardin the 5x86 build is the exact one I bought in '98. I found it at my cousin's place 😀

If only I could find the picture with me and my budy in "98 when we had a lan party with Descent, Duke Nukem etc. The case was like the one in the 5x86 build but with pink accents 😁

I got mine as a present from my parents when I was transitioning into high school in '98. Mine didn't come with a sound card or optical drive at the time, but I did buy an ESS PCI audio card for the following year.

This is what the case looked like, it's not exactly the same as the original, but very close


Reply 27 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

The K7 slot A - build

1st Step - Slot A Cartridge removal/disassembly/teardown/dismantle

After I managed to find a SLOT A motherboard with the Irongate chipset together with four CPU's my first priority was a complete disassembly and carefull cleaning. Little did I know that this would turn into an adventure 😁

As usual freeing the CPU's from their SECC cartridge, even if we are talking about AMD Slot A or Intel Slot 1, is sometimes a hairy business 😁

In my case I used a pair of flat nosed pliers with a little electrical tape to prevent damage to the catridge and the backplate. Even so, some marks would remain.

I firmly secured one arm of the pliers into a vice and with the other arm I applied force. Even so, the entire process required some convincing. The cartridge was extremely stubborn, it moaned and groaned and squeaked. It was nerve-racking! 😁

The upper part of the cartridge gave up extremely easy with the help of a fine screwdriver.

The bottom part, near the connector was held tight. In the end, only one of the cartidge remained intact, the other three sustained one broken securing hole. No big deal. This problem will be adressed later. The exterior was in pristine condition.

After inspecting closely the cartridges I saw that the small securing hole that broke off, was a different shape from the others. Three were round and one oval. I guess this was some kind of anti-tamper system to prevent opening and voiding warranty. The metal prongs from the heatplate had ca collar like shape that would be retained into the plastic holes of the cartridge.

After almost 17 years the thermal paste/pad was still kind of soft. The only surprise was the thick paste used to fill the gap between the heatplate and the cache chips. It was brittle and it was poorly applied.

Under no circumstance was I to power up these CPU's like this. My gut feeling was right, again 😁

After removing the plastic cartridge the metal heatplate was held with two metal strips. These were under some tension an removing them proved challenging.

You had to press down on the CPU PCB to prevent it from rocking while at the same time you would have to keep a finger on the middle of the metal strip and with the other hand with a fine screwdriver you would have to bend the metal "teeth/hooks" of the metal strips to free them up.

If the PCB would start rocking, damage could occur to the CPU die. A BIG No No!

Over the entire process I got fed up with the smell they were releasing and I was anxious to clean them up reallllllllllyyyyyyy well. It's a distinct smell of old electronics, dust, old paste and God know what else....😁

To my surprise on the K7 500MHz CPU's die it was written K7900CNRBCA

a) AMD K7500MTR51B C - 500MHz
b) AMD K7550MTR51B C - 550 MHz
c) AMD K7600MTR51B A - 600MHz
d) AMD K7700MTR51B A - 700MHz

cleste_1.jpg cleste_2.jpg cleste_3.jpg cleste_4.jpg cleste_5.jpg metalp_1.jpg metalp_2.jpg surub1.jpg surub2.jpg
amd_1.jpg amd_2.jpg case_1.jpg case_2.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/vhx874v6/bd0122de/ https://postimg.cc/gallery/1s1u3qeea/101f22ba/

2nd step - Deep cleaning of the CPU's and heatsinks

Also I bought a few 50 mm fans- FRACTAL DESIGN SILENT SERIES 50MM (FD-FAN-50) 3500 rpm - In the end they proved too weak and I reused some of the old fans from the original heatsinks.

In the end REVOLTEC Air Guard RL035 - 4500 rpm 50 mm fans will prove more adequate.

Note the K7 AMD K7500MTR51B C - 500MHz rated CPU with the K7900CNRBCA markings.

One of the heatsinks, the BIG Cooler Master one, came without the metal retaining clips, so I had to get creative and improvize.

I drilled a couple of holes and used a couple that were already in the heatsink and heatplate and with the help of 4 nuts and bolts I tightend the sucker really well 😁

I made a spread test with some ol' Arctic Alumina thermal paste I had around.

For the final assembly I used less paste to prevent bleeding.

500_900_1.jpg 500_900_2.jpg 550_1.jpg 550_2.jpg 600_1.jpg 600_2.jpg 700_1.jpg 700_2.jpg cpu_1.jpg cpu_2.jpg cpu_3.jpg full1.jpgrev1.jpg rev2.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/mgplea9k/5251cb2a/

CM1.jpg CM2.jpg pst1.jpg pst2.jpg pst3.jpg pst4.jpg pst5.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1y2pigqyg/de3f1e34/

3rd step - Cleaning the motherboard and CPU cartidges, coolers

The motherboard I found It's not exotic or OC friendly, but it is as good as it gets for me. I couldn't find another so, for the time beeing it will have to do.

PC CHIPS/PcCHIPS/PC-CHIPS M800LMR V1.3A - AMD Irongate 750/756 - 1 AGP 2x, 4PCI, onboard Audio and Lan, ATA66, SDRAM - 768MB max

It came out golden, literally 😁

Well here I was with clean slot A CPU's ready to be put back together and a squeaky clean motherboard.

GPU's I had plenty, RAM plenty, HDD's plenty. The only thing missing was a good PSU with strong 3.3V and 5V rails.

One name came into my mind obsesively - ENERMAX.

After asouring the local OLX site to my susprise a found just what I was looking for - a mint, new in BOX, ENERMAX EG365AX-VE(G) 353W.

It was really cheap and at first I thought that it couldn't be right. After a phone call my doubts were quickly put to rest.

After 24 hours I held in my hands the Holy Grail, a shiny new ENERMAX PSU.

20160421_125732.jpg 20160421_125748.jpg back.jpg clean1.jpg clean2.jpg clean3.jpg clean4.jpg clean5.jpg psu0.jpg psu1.jpg psu2.jpg psu3.jpg psu4.jpg psu5.jpg psu6.jpg psu7.jpg psu8.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/308awon6q/bb16b057/

4th step - Slot A CPU assembly

After I opened up the CPU cartridges I was aware that for the contact between the heatplate and the cache chips I had to use some kind of thermal pad.

I found localy Arctic branded ones of 1.5 mm and 0.5 mm - blue colour. They seemed right, but in the end the 0.5 mm one was too slim and the 1.5 mm too thick.

I tried to determine the exact width I needed and one size came out after a few measurements ~ 1 mm. Because I couldn't find Arctic blue pad of 1 mm width I resorted to buying a Thermal Grizzly Minus 8 - 1 mm pad.

After I received the Grizzly pad I found out that this width wasn't good either. It was too thick, hard and brittle. The Arctic one was way softer.

After a quick and EXPENSIVE lesson in thermal pads..... I counted my options and the solution came out in the form of the Arctic blue pad 1.5 mm which would have to be squeezed to the correct width.

To add to the trouble, the width between the CACHE chips and the heatplate wasn't always the same.

Also the cache chips of the CPU's were sometimes concave some time convex.

For each and every CPU I had to cut a smaller piece of Arctic blue pad, place a small clear plastic film over it and press it down with something flat.

I used the Cooler Master heatsink.

The process was repeated 3 or 4 time for each CPU - very hard work 😁 but for me it was very REWARDING.

When I assembled the heatplates and the heatsinks I also filled up with thermal pads the outside square holes of the heatplates which made contact with the cache chips for a better transfer of the heat. From factory there was nothing there.

Also I found out that the retaining clips of the heatsinks were out of shape and required some bending back. Initialy the contact between the heatplate and the heatsink was made through a very thin pad but when I used thermal paste I needed more force. From factory the gap was to big between the heatplate and the heatsink. Totally unacceptable! 😁

Arctic MX-4 thermal paste was used for the CPU die.

Puting back the metal strips that hold down the CPU pcb proved difficult, but in the end I prevailed 😀 The trick is to keep the inside tooth of metal strip more inclined while the outside one would have to be more open. Then you would have to use a fine nose plier to bend it into the secured position. A steady hand is required. Damage to to PCB can occur easily, so tread carefully 😁 Check the picture bellow. Also avoid rocking the CPU PCB, otherwise you know....cracked, chipped CPU die.

After the opening of the cartridges, the holes of the plastic covers were bigger and three of them missed one of the holes. To prevent them from rattling I used two thin strips of BISON MONTAGEKIT EXTREME GRIP TAPE on the top side. This proved the winning solution. They were held firmly in place.

All the fans were cleaned and oiled. One fan was replaced because the original one was ceased.

The CPUS were once again as the day they were born. HAPPY DAYS.

ass1.jpg ass1_1.jpg ass2.jpg ass3.jpg ass4.jpg ass5.jpg ass6.jpg ass7.jpg ass8.jpg ass9.jpg grizzly.jpg grizzly0.jpg pad1.jpgcase1.jpg fan1.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2xbk7dd9e/793ea44e/

5th step - some FUN

In the end I played some games and installed Win 98 SE. To this date this was my best experience with a PC and Windows 98. Delta Force - Land Warrior brought back some memories.

Before even I begun there was a problem. The mouse couldn't be put into the green PS/2. Upon closer inspection I found out that the black prong from a mouse was broken and left inside. I used some double sided tape and a toothpick to fish the part out. The seller forgot to mention this shortcoming 😁.

The only problem was the motherboard. It lacked any OC feature. I couldn't adjust any timing for the memory. No voltage control, absolutely nothing.

To my surprise the K7 500MHz CPU with the K7900CNRBCA markings ran at 700MHz without problems. Some of the other CPU's weren't correctly recongnized. I wanted to update de BIOS but couldn't find a suitable BIOS file and the chance of bricking the motherboard were too great. Even my old Tomato 5x86 Board had more RAM timing options.

Back in the day this was a budget motherboard so there is nothing to do about it.

The CPU's will have to be tested on another motherboard, preferably a high end one.

So in my case this was as good as it gets!

The reward was priceless though. I enjoyed every moment and I have no regrets 😁 monetary or otherwise 😁

500_1.jpg 500_2.jpg 600_1.jpg 600_2.jpg 700_1.jpg 700_2.jpg mobo1.jpg mobo2.jpg mobo3.jpg mobo4.jpg mobo5.jpg mobo6.jpg mobo7.jpg mobo8.jpg mobo9.jpg mobo10.jpg mobo11.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1kq6l2liw/ad92c60d/

500_700_1.jpg 500_700_2.jpg 500_700_t1.jpg 500_700_t2.jpg 500_700_t3.jpg df5.jpg df6.jpg df7.jpg df8.jpg df10.jpg df13.jpg df18.jpg lownoise.jpg lownoise2.jpg lownoise3.jpg lownoise4.jpg PSU1.jpg san1.jpg san2.jpg san3.jpg san4.jpg setup_2.jpg setup_3.jpg setup_4.jpg setup_5.jpg setup1.jpg stuck_2.jpg stuck1.jpg win98_setup_2.jpg win98_setup_3.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/s0jp5yew/dfff8e2e/

K7 - Classic Athlon

Test system:

CPU: Athlon Classic K7 500, 550, 600 and 700 MHz
RAM: SDRAM 256MB PC100 DS, 2X128MB PC100 SS = 512MB PC100
GPU: Palit Daytona Geforce 3 Ti 200 - 64MB - DeepCool V50 Cooler
FDD: Alps
HDD: WD Caviar 800JB - 7200rpm IDE 8MB

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 19:13. Edited 3 times in total.

Reply 28 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

These were the builds I wanted to share with you. The K7 wont be put into a case, for now.

I hope you enjoyed these posts 😀

Later I'll add some more pictures with ISA, PCI and AGP cards and a Voodoo 3 3000 rescue plus some other extras. 330+ pictures ready to upload...


Reply 30 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

Glad you like my posts Ronin82.

More to follow, the coming days/weeks.

Sneak peak.

3dfx_1.jpg AWE64_1.jpg bfg7800_6.jpg fan4.jpg FR_1.jpg ibm1.jpg Oti077_1.jpg QBF_5.jpg tehnique_2.jpg trio_01.jpg v3b_1.jpg image.jpg YMF_724_1.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/21ux2wr5k/8cc587e3/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 19:15. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 31 of 823, by Tetrium

User metadata
Rank l33t++

Absolutely amazing! You should team up with Artex! 😁

And I don't know where to comment 🤣, detailoverload indeed! 😁

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
Report spammers here!

Reply 32 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

Glad you like my work 😁 The K7 (re)build was for me all about details. I allways wanted to own a SLOT A system. I guess it's because it's not so common like the SLOT 1 systems. I weren't looking for the max performance or anything. I just wanted to kill the White Whale 😁

No post without pics so I'll add another sneak peak with another story about three GPU's and my socket A test bed (actually my 4th PC - which I KEPT, and I didn't give it away) 😁 It wasnt the complete success I had hoped but the story later...

cpu.jpg k7vta1.jpg k7vta2.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1y0758eoy/46bdd59d/

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 19:15. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 33 of 823, by Artex

User metadata
Rank l33t

Holy crap! Seriously - NICE work - absolutely great to see this stuff. Excellent hardware, pictures and overall presentation. A job well done!

My Retro B:\ytes YouTube Channel & Retro Collection

Reply 35 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

Thank You artex & retrofanatic for your appreciation 😀

I've been a long time lurker without registering on the forum and usually came to see the thread "Bought these (retro) hardware today"

I saw both of your work/stuff on the forum and I like it a lot.

I'll post more stuff this week.

Episodes to come over the next period:

1. The GREAT Voodoo 3 3000 16 MB rescue (Made in China )
2. A not so lucky Asus Geforce 4 4600 Ti
3. The 5,6,7 AGP trio
4. What's left in my stash?
5. Little bent PIN
6. How I clean and store my stuff

Reply 36 of 823, by archsan

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

Tetrium's right... this thread is pr0n overload 😁 but keep it going anyway!

The "COMRACE" case looks really nice and I remember the other one with the vertical sliding panel from the early pentium classic era (my friend's P120 machine used it)

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."—Arthur C. Clarke
"No way. Installing the drivers on these things always gives me a headache."—Guybrush Threepwood (on cutting-edge voodoo technology)

Reply 37 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

@archsan - Guilty pleasures of HW Pr0n 😁

Without any futher ado I present to you:

The GREAT Voodoo 3 3000 16 MB rescue

Some backround info.

Back in the day I never saw or heard about VooDoo 1 graphic cards or 3dfx for that matter. In '94 I just entered highschool and I was a total greenhorn 😁 This stuff was exotic, expensive and hard to come by. Information was scarce and Internet was still a pimple faced teenager 😁 ISP's were as common as hens teeth 😁 we didnt have internet in our highschool. Some had dial-up internet at home but it was expensive.

Time passed and I started to accumulate a lot about computer hardware. Beeing an informatics highschool all day long you heard about PC's pc PC'S!!!!! Good times indeed.The first time I heard about TBAV - ThunderByte Antivirus, F-Prot, OneHalf or Michelangelo infections. The first time I heard about Pentium when I just bought a mere 5x86. Playing Gorillas (Gorilla.bas) The first time playing DOOM on a friends 4x86 until he threw me out 😁 and after that episode I never got to play another game on his PC. Playing Warcraft II multiplayer, Lotus, Grand Prix......

But lets return to the matter at hand 😁

In that period I started hearing about VooDoo 2 and SLI and how great it was. All the information I had came from highschool friends and one IT magazine called CHIP. I used to drool reading about VooDoo 2, Voodoo Banshee, VooDoo Rush. They had such great advertising 😁 Owning any VooDoo card in that time was out of the question. Tooooooooooooooooo expensiveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee 😁

Then came nVidia and my focus changed. When I read about VooDoo 3, I wasnt impressed. Starting from that point onward VooDoo and 3dfx werent very high on my list of interests. TNT, TNT 2 & Geforce were the name of the game.

Funny thing though that in 2015 when I was at the local flea market I saw a green pcb with the letters 3dfx printed on it. I paid 1.2 EUR for it and I was very happy for this purchase, not because of the price but because of the memories it brought back 😀. It turned out it was an STB Systems 3dfx Voodoo 3-3000 - 16MB AGP card Made in Mexico. It had a few scratches but it was in very good condition. I took it home, cleaned it up well and after I tested it later I found out it was flawless 😀

In 2016 I came across another VooDoo card. It was tossed above other components, It look rough and rusty. The seller wanted too much for it and I didnt want to pay the asking price. One week later I haggled with him and bought it cheaper 😁 3 EUR. From that point on I actively started looking for VooDoo cards.

This brings me to the begining of an adventure: The GREAT Voodoo 3 3000 16 MB rescue.

After I bought the roughed up Voodoo card I tried to identify it. Initialy I thought it was a V3 2000 but in the end it was another V3 3000 16MB AGP card. It was looking tired and beat up. Upon looking closely I saw that one tantalum capacitor was missing. Later on I found that another 3 solid capacitors together with other 2 ceramic type ones, were MIA. In total 6 pieces of the V3 puzzle.

I was quite pissed for not seeing the damage and buying a graphics card which was in essence just a dirty paper weight.

Initially I wanted to toss it into my spare parts bin but after so much time inspecting it for other signs of damage the 3dfx letters kept on poping in my head. V-O-O-D-O-O What if I can resurrect it? That will be a story to tell 😁

Lets get on with it shall we? 😀

Stage 1 - Heatsink removal and general cleanup

Voodoo 3 3000 16MB AGP - Chip 355-0024-020 / PCB 210-0364-003 Made in China.

The roughed up V3 stood in my car overnight at temperatures around 0 degrees C. I knew that the heatsink was glued on. I tried to remove the heatsink from the first V3 but it was very well glued and I was afraid of damaging the chip. In the case of the roughed up V3 I had nothing to lose 😁

In the morning I tried to remove the heatsink by moving it gently. NO DICE! it wouldnt budge! I tried to insert a flat screwdriver in a corner of the heatsink while using a credit card to protect the PCB. Again NO DICE!

Very well I'll put you into the freezer! It stood there for 50 minutes in a plastic bag. After this I tried again with the flat screwdriver and the credit card. Again NO DICE!

Back into the freezer it went but to no avail. While still beeing cold I had the inspiration to generously pour isopropyl alcohol on the heatsink and under it. After this I tired again with the flat screwdriver and the credit card. POP! went the heasink and the GRAPHIC CHIP was free. I finally saw the 3dfx markings. It was very rewarding!

Searching for the chip code revealed very few information. This V3 was Made in China not in Mexico. This made me to really want to rescue it.

All the screws and the bracket were cleaned using some auto rust remover: Szuper Evipass I also cleaned some rust covered pins.

Cleaning the glue from the heatsink and graphic chip proved dificult. It required lots of isopropyl alcohol and elbow grease.For large pieces of glue I used a credit card to scrape it off. I had to leave the heatsink with a thin film of isopropyl alcohol to soften the glue. I had to repeat the process numerous times.

In the end the V3 came out clean as a whistle 😁

3dfx_1_1.jpg 3dfx_1.jpg 3dfx_2.jpg a_V3000_1.jpg av3000_2.jpg av3000_3.jpg av3000_4.jpg av3000_5.jpg av3000_6.jpg izo_1.jpg izo_2.jpg izo_3.jpg izo_4_1.jpg izo_4.jpg jclean.jpg protection.jpg rad_1.jpg rad_2.jpg rad_3.jpg rad_4.jpg rust_1.jpg rust_2.jpg rust_3.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1zm2q5hbs/45867d9a/

Stage 2 - Damage assessment

I cleaned the old solder from the affected areas.

Upon close inspection and comparation with pictures on the internet I came to the folowing conclusion.

Missing capacitors: 1 tanatlum 6V 22uf, 3 solid 16V 10uf and 2 ceramic capacitors.

The capacitor problem wasnt so damaging.I knew I could work with it. The BIG problem were the copper pads missing from the PCB on which the capacitors made contact with the traces. In two places they were completely ripped off. SH&#$((!&(TTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!

3dfx_mx_ch_1.jpg 3dfx_mx_ch_2.jpg 3donor.jpg clean_solder.jpg dmg_1.jpg dmg_2.jpg dmg_3.jpg dmg_4.jpg good_v3_1.jpg good_v3_2.jpg good_v3_3.jpg good_v3_4.jpg good_v3_5.jpg holes_1.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/1s7ml4l4o/d78c23e9/

Stage 3 - Solution

For the ceramic capacitors I already found a donor card: an old MEDION ATI X740XL which was dead. I used a visual size comparison to determine the right capacitors.

For the other capacitors I didnt have replacement parts. I could buy them but they were expensive. So I had to improvize. I used regular electrolytic capacitors. I couldn't find the right tantalum and solid capacitors no matter how hard I tried. They had to be ordered specialy and in big quantity.

The only problem that remained was that of the copper pads. I watched closely the PCB and saw that for each pad there was a tiny hole which made the contact between the pad and the trace in the PCB. BINGO! I used a sharp blade to scrape off the laquer from the tiny holes and I was greeted by a nice copper colour.

To restore the contact with the PCB traces I used tiny strings made from Solder WICK wires.

The revival started to look like it will be a success 😁

In this stage I made a final comparison using my V3 Made in MEXICO and pictures I found on the internet with the V3 Made in China.


Both of my V3's had the same part number 210-0364-003, but the value for the tantalum capacitor was different: Made in China 6V 22uf for the Made in Mexico 16v 22uf.

I decided to go for the same capacity (uf) and higher voltage (V).

At shopping I went with high hopes 😁 The local electronics shop had a disastrous capacitor selection, and I found only these:

10uf 16v-Yageo
10uf 25V-Huang
10uf 35v-Yageo
22uf 25V-?
47uf 6V - SMD.
All 105C rated.

In the end I used: 3x10uf 35V-Yageo si 1x22uf 25V. All have higher voltage values and the same capacity.

v3k_agp_china_f.jpg v3k_agp_mexico_f.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2nlqhm1a0/e34a66fe/

Stage 4 - Reconstruction

I took out the smallest soldering iron I had, some sparkling wine and GOGOGOGOGO!!!!!!!!!

The whole operation went very smoothly. In 30 minutes all the job was done. Pad rebuild and capacitors. I was surprised it went so easy!

The next day I washed again the card with isopropyl alcohol to remove the flux residues and I modified the original heatsink to accept a 50 mm Scythe Mini KAZE fan. It came out pretty good. The sanding on the corners of the heatsink where the screws are poses no problem because the area doesnt touch the graphic chip. Finding the correct length for the screws proved a little difficult and the space underneath them was littered with electronic components.

Attchement of the heatsink was done using push pins.

Also I had to be carefull because the fan had to be flush with the heatsink on the side of the AGP connector otherwise it would touch the neighbouring PCI slot and it wouldnt get all the way into the AGP slot.

On the graphic chip I used Arctic MX-4 thermal paste.

0_work_space.jpg a1visual_1.jpg a15w.jpg alipit_1.jpg alipit_2.jpg apads_1.jpg atrace_rep_0.jpg atrace_rep_1.jpg atrace_rep_2.jpg bleads_1.jpg bleads_2.jpg bleads_3.jpg bleads_4.jpg bleads_5.jpg capacitors.jpg fan1.jpg fan2.jpg fan3.jpg fan4.jpg final_1.jpg final_2.jpg final_3.jpg scard.jpg ucap1.jpg ucap2.jpg ucap3.jpg ucap4.jpg ucap5.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/ua3l6i9k/e077d612/

Stage 5 - BLISS

The test of the repaired card was done on the the K6-2 450MHz build. Game tests for that build were made with this card. No artifacts were present, overheating or freezes.

I call it a complete success 😁

So in the end VOODOO really lives up to its name V-O-O-D-O-O! I'm still working knee deep in the dead! 😁

nfs15.jpg s_Clipboard01.jpg sys.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/2ni26m9rs/9589e546/

The lessons learned with the V3 were used for a 3dfx Creative 3D Blaster Banshee 16 MB CT 6760 PCI which also had a missing tantalum capacitor. This time a attached the capacitor on its side. It came out much better. If I find a tantalum capacitor I'll replace the electrolytic one.

a_banshee.jpg image.jpg image.jpg

gallery: https://postimg.cc/gallery/27dfr58c8/9c60d018/

More stories to follow!


Disclaimer: I'm no electronics engineer. All the repairs were done using common sense, my experience and great attention to details 😁

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 19:16. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 38 of 823, by chinny22

User metadata
Rank l33t

Loving this so far! there must be about 10 different posts worth of reading in here!
Like you we got our 1st PC a DX2 66 in 1995 so 486's hold a special spot with me.
Luckily I held on to that PC to this day, but still regret throwing out so much old hardware that I collected at the time to mess around with, and now have had to pay to replace.
I like the fact that your FDD and CD are both Sony, kind of match.

Our 2nd (and my 1st very own) PC was a P2 400 in 1998 so Slot 1 is my favourite system. But this means I missed out on the 3DFX days and went straight to a then unbeatable TNT card. I saw a friends Voodoo 2 and thought it was messy with the pass though cable. Its only now I've gotten into them thanks to the novelty of SLI. It makes me sad thinking how many cards have been thrown away and lost forever so glad you managed to save that Voodoo 3.
Also your system is a bit "exotic" as most 100Mhz FSB Slot 1 PC's are built around a BX motherboard where your going for a VIA chipset, It's not for me but always good to see something different.

Look forward to whats coming next
PS NFS Porsche is one of my favourite games as well!

Reply 39 of 823, by Robert B

User metadata
Rank Oldbie

@chinny22 - glad you like the stories 😀 WOW! you kept your 4x86 for such a long time. Congrats 😁 Lately on the local forums from my country, I started to see "desperate" guys searching for 2x86 and 3x86 systems. Their chances to find complete and functional ones are pretty slim. If somebody wants to find/rebuild any old PC he should start ASAP. A few years from now it will be too late.

The VIA Slot 1 system was an expected gift from my cousin. He called me once: YO! Bro! I have a few old PC's which I want to throw out. Are You interested? HELL YEAH!!! This is how I got the Slot 1 and K6-2. Lucky me 😁

I still remember their father buying the PIII when I only had a meager Celeron 366A/MSI 440BX 😁 and I was dreaming about a PII. The twist was that I had upgraded to a Nvidia Vanta 8MB and he only had a SiS 6236 8MB. I was very displeased by the firm who sold such an unbalanced system 😁 a PIII 450 MHz with a SiS 6236? SRSLY???? The price was through the roof 😁 (the PIII was bought soon after its release.)

I'm still surprised that the V3 works. Those cards were heavy duty!

The only things from my original 5x86 that survived are: the soundcard ESS1868 (now inside the case), the motherboard manual and the invoice (which I've yet to find).


More later.

Last edited by Robert B on 2018-04-18, 19:17. Edited 1 time in total.