Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

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Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-09 @ 03:04

So, I recently acquired a Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme, because the form factor and board are very close to my original PC. This board is the PB410A, I had originally a PB420 in a Packard Bell Multi-Media. I'm well experienced with computer repair so I don't mind some work. I took some pictures along the way. I should have made a picture of the machine in one piece before, but I didn't originally intend to document it. So I thought you guys might be interested in this journey. I'm also looking for a Master CD and Master Diskette if anyone has it.

Packard Bell front bezel. Needs Retrobrite treatment.
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Original condition, full of dust
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Close up of the font panel headers
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Inside of the power supply. Model PB70. Some capacitors have leaked electrolyte onto the board.
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After board has been cleaned
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Close up of some of the chips, BIOS, and NiMH battery.
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Close up of the VGA controller section
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Packard Bell custom 2400 baud modem installed
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Case cleaned and motherboard reinstalled.
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Power supply board cleaned up as much as possible in preparation for replacing capacitors and testing of components
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5.25" and 3.5" Floppy disk drive
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5.25" and 3.5" Floppy disk drive connectors
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Disk drives cleaned. 3.5" drive bezel and button require Retrobrite treatment to return to original color.
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Power supply after cleaning and replacement of all capacitors.
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First boot.
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Additional images as of 3/19/18:


Getting parts ready for Retrobrite.
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After Retrobrite.
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Everything reinstalled into the case.
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Jumper configuration found under top case.
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View from the front.
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Another view.
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Last edited by Zorix on 2018-3-19 @ 16:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Cizkaro » 2018-3-09 @ 08:09

HOLY SCHNIKES!! That dust! Good to see you got the old gal cleaned up and running better! Its crazy how it only has 1 ram slot but really cool it has a zif socket! I generally use peroxide cream from a beauty supply store when restoring plastics. :3
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-09 @ 14:49

It only came with on board ram originally. The 72 pin simm socket can take up to 32mb of extra ram, and it can also have up to 512k of sram for cache and tag. Video ram has an upgrade option too. I have high concentration of peroxide in liquid form because I have seen some plastics have streaks with the cream when applied unevenly. I don't want to risk that so I'm going to actually try regular store 3% peroxide first as an experiment to see if it can actually work. If it doesn't work so well, I'll try the 40 volume salon type. Thanks for the comment.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby CrossBow777 » 2018-3-09 @ 16:00

I had a Packard Bell that looked just like this only I purchased it with just a 486 SX-25mhz originally. It also has more ISA slots and I seem to recall at least two ram slots in it. I know it had more ISA because at one time I ran my SB-16 in it plus a separate TB Maui alongside it. Eventually sold the Maui for like $75 a year later and attached an SCB-55 to the SB-16 directly. I also had an upgraded paradise video card in it as well but I do remember it having the headland chip for the onboard VGA. Wow.. brought back some memories from '94-'96 when it was my primary gaming computer. I eventually put a DX2-66 in it about a year later and had it OC'd to 80mhz as I recall.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-09 @ 16:36

Would be interested in seeing what that system looked like. Must have been a taller desktop or a tower. A lot of systems came with the SX-25 back then, it was probably cheaper. I was too young when we got it to have understood the offerings at the time. That Headland chip is actually VLB connected as well, which I didn't know until recently when reading the datasheet for it. WIth the overdrive socket, in theory it could run a Pentium in it, though when I originally had it, we upgraded it to a 486 DX4/100 but it required a voltage converter adapter, which are nearly impossible to find now. I don't remember which sound card my original one came with, I'm sure I could find out. Thanks.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby CrossBow777 » 2018-3-09 @ 21:27

Mine didn't have a sound card. It was pretty stripped down and very basic. But my other computer at the time was my aging 286-16mhz I had since '89. So it was a good start that I was able to build more onto later at the time. Fond memories of me and my friends in the ARMY playing Ultima 8 on it, Privateer, tie-fighter, and the later VGA Sierra and Lucasarts adventures on that PB. I also never remember having any issues with that computer and remember when I found out later that PBs had a bad rep I never understood why that was since mine was on ALL the time and seem to take everything I threw at it at the time like a champ.

Forgot to mention that I remember it looked just like this one did as mine also had the 5.25 and 3.5 drives on it. It was the only model 486 at the AAFES that had both drives and I had plenty of software from my old 286 still that also had both drive types. I later removed the 5.25 from it and put a CDrom into it along with an SB-16 that controlled it. I hadn't noticed it until just looking at your pics now. Mine also had the single riser card in the middle and that is where the ISA cards were plugged in. When I first looked at your pics, it looked like you only had the one ISA slot, but that was a slot for the riser. So yeah, mine looked just like this size and all. I do seem to recall the motherboard on mine being a bit larger though and I could have sworn it extended from front the back along the bottom. I don't have it anymore I don't think but I do think my mother kept the old 286. But sadly it has been in a non climate controlled draft detached garage for nearly 30 years.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-09 @ 22:34

Those old machines clean up pretty well, so I wouldn't be surprised if it still worked. The Packard Bell of this time period had power supply issues. I know ours went out probably a year or two later, outside of the warranty and it was $70 replacement back then. Back then I wasn't old enough to understand how these things worked. I had a feeling I would have to do a power supply rebuild on this one given it's issues and sure enough half the capacitors I removed were either too high ESR, no connection inside, or the capacitance drifted too far out of tolerance. I never even attempted to power it on once I saw the condition inside, I just ordered what I needed and replaced everything, no big deal. Some of the later model Packard Bells had some motherboard reliability issues I think, and their cases got really cheap. I think they were racing to the bottom to cut cost and eventually it damaged their brand.

I still have the original monitor, it somehow survived, and I also have the original keyboard somewhere. I don't think I have the mouse anymore though, I haven't seen it around. I imagine I will need to take the monitor apart at some point because it was sitting in my parents' garage for about 20 years and all kinds of nasty things could be inside. I don't have too much experience with repairing monitors. I understand them in theory and I know what to look for, but I haven't actually had a go at one yet. Repaired many LCD monitors and TVs, but those are almost always power supply board related so no big deal. CRTs have hazardous HV, so I know to discharge the tube and any filtering capacitors as well. You all may see that in the coming months.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Illutorium » 2018-3-09 @ 23:06

"Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme" - I do see then "Supreme" it's a from 1992 not a 2017...
But soldering to a "Nichicon" caps are be lookly nice.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby CkRtech » 2018-3-10 @ 06:39

Nice work. A friend of mine down the street had one of these while we were growing up. May have to restore one myself someday!
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-10 @ 15:30

Hope you do! Like I said previously, the power supplies are known to fail. If you need any help with it let me know.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Formulator » 2018-3-10 @ 22:02

Fantastic job on the restoration. I myself have a PB300 with a PSU that has failed on the 12V rail.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-11 @ 01:41

Thought about fixing the power supply then? They aren't too complicated.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Formulator » 2018-3-11 @ 17:20

Yes, I'd like to. At first the HDD would not work so I checked voltage on 12V rail and read about ~10V. Then I tried to make adjustment and knob snapped off quite easily:

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I just need to find suitable replacement and check caps I suppose.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-11 @ 18:20

Ouch. I never messed with that adjustment. I haven't seen the schematic for this supply so I wasn't sure which supply it was responsible for. Either way, all the voltages were within tolerance on mine. Interesting though that the Power Good signal didn't show 5v until a load was attached. I'm not sure if VRs have a label with their value, you might be able to remove it and set it to the extreme and see what value it shows and just order a replacement. I'm surprised it's the same layout as mine.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-19 @ 16:11

Added 6 additional pictures from the work done this weekend.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby xjas » 2018-3-20 @ 02:52

Haha cool, my very first own-PC-bought-with-own-money was a similar model in the same case (also 486SX/25 IIRC), although I'm fairly sure it was labelled a "Pack-Mate" instead of a Legend. Looked exactly like that though.

Nice job cleaning it up! I don't understand how that much dust can even get into these things sometimes. Great to see it back in action. :)
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-3-20 @ 12:41

Thanks! Not the end for this machine yet. I have a CF to IDE adapter for the hard drive, an Aztech sound card that would have been installed with it around that time, a 32mb SIMM, 512k cache sram, 256kx16 video zip ram upgrade, and a CPU upgrade of either a DX2/66 or one of those Kingston 133mhz upgrades. Normally I'd like to have used a DX4/100 but finding a 5v to 3v converter is impossible now. I may also add a NE2000 compatible network card for future IPX gaming. I'd like to have 3 computers set up on my work table, a 486 class, a Pentium class, and a Pentium II class, for the different gaming eras. DOS/WIN3.11, WIN95, and WIN98. I also have a Packard bell monitor that has not been powered on and lived in a garage for 20 years. I will take pictures of that and do the retrobrite treatment on that too. It may need pcb repairs too.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby mperu99 » 2018-10-29 @ 02:48

Zorix,

I have a Packard Bell 780 Supreme, I just restored, I got it still with the factory seal never broken, however it would not post. I had to break the seal, and found though
the inside was immaculate condition, the battery had done deadly puking on the board and destroyed some critical circuit runs. After attempting to repair with no
luck, i was able to find a PB Axcel 39CDT board, which was identical, i just had to swap the bios from mine to the new replacement board, and i did solder in a new battery on the new
board just to make sure. I did upgrade the processor from a 486sx 25 to a 486 overdrive 66

So basically I have the same thing you have, Luckily the hard drive is original and had all the factory software already on it
including the recovery imaging program with all the diskette images, I do have all the packard bell DISKETTE images for mine, which include dos , windows 3.1 , works, etc..
hit me up if you are interested in getting these. lots of 3.5 1.44mb floppies, but it will make yours factory again.

pb780-sup-sm1.jpg
pb780-sup-sm2.jpg
pb780-sup-sm3.jpg
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby Zorix » 2018-10-29 @ 13:18

Hi There mperu99,

Nice machine you have there! I have the same monitor, but has the older Packard Bell logo on it. Just need the time to take it apart, clean it, replace anything that has gone bad, and restore the plastic.

I would definitely like a copy of the restore disks for that system, Thanks.

I hope you kept the original bad motherboard. If the board itself is beyond repair, the controller chips can still be useful for repair of other boards in the future. The north bridge, south bridge, ide controller, vga controller, etc.

Looks like your front plastic needs some retrobrite as well, it makes a huge difference. Also, I would advise you to have a look inside the power supply to make sure nothing has leaked, that could make things a lot worse over time.

I'm still working on the Legend 760 Supreme. I put in a lot of upgrades, a cd-rom, and even the floppy emulator. I'm designing a new project at the moment to replace the cd-rom, but it will be a while before that is ready.

I have a Legend 600X Supreme to work on next. The power supply was not repairable with my current skill. The switching transformer has a few shorted windings which won't allow the supply to start. Maybe one day I will rewind it. In the meantime, I have replaced the inside with a mean-well supply and converted it to AT. I need to 3d print some parts to make things sit right, so it's not fully assembled yet. I will make a new thread about the system, but the motherboard is also dead, but I should be able to fix it.

Thanks for sharing your Packard Bell, I always look forward to seeing those machines restored and taken care of.
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Re: Packard Bell Legend 760 Supreme restoration

Postby mperu99 » 2018-10-29 @ 16:34

Zorix,

The Power Supply is 100% , this system was not used long and then it was packed away, its like new basically. Yes, the plastic has yellowed, but the keyboard is still nice. I have yet to attempted to retrobrite, I have seen videos etc.. but not 100% sure if i will get it right. not sure about the amount of salon peroxide vs. water.. etc.
Though i also tend to like the yellowing affect, as it makes it more vintage/nostalgic. Yes, i kept the original board, i also have another PB410 board that i tried but it too will not post, even though it does not look like battery leaked very much, it still wont post. It did not have the blue overdrive socket, but it was clean, i think it has a short on the bus, just not sure, but i still have that board as well. I dont have a re-work station, so i couldnt do the component swaps if i wanted. but i tend to keep the boards or if i decide to sell my PB collection they will go with the collection. I have two PB fat base towers Legend 55 platinum and a Legend 1090 (I think its a 1090) the 55 is a pentium 133 and the 1090 is a pentium 166 MMX , i need 5 1/4 mounting rails , at least 3 pairs would be nice. that would put me at two pairs each system for CD drives or other 5 1/4 bay item. I dont have the means to make them , but i keep looking for them. Both of those post and i have even had windows 95 boot in safe mode on each. So at least they work and basically all there. I will eventually get the recovery CD's for them and make them whole again.

I also have a 486 desktop believe its a 20CD (which works) and also another desktop that is a 401CD i think. (I cannot get past the bios password, even though i have tried to clear it , the RTC chip is dead which may be part of the issue of trying to clear it. another board i am going to have to jack with. v

I also have a PB500 , very old 8088 , with a 8bit video card and a 8bit RLL controller and a Seagate ST138R , that i believe is bad (DUE TO DROP DAMAGE DURING SHIPPING) the seller made the mistake of turning on the computer to see if it powers up and did not know about parking the HDD before shipping. So as soon as i find another RLL drive I will attempt to make that one whole as well

As soon as i get a chance i will get the diskette images to a place you can download them and let you know .
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