What is this connector? (Dell laptop)

thatguyontheright

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I am using an old laptop to do a HTPC case mod, a Dell Inspiron N7010 with an i3 -M370 processor.

The motherboard is split between a networking board, and the main board. I don't want to not use the networking board because it holds the majority of the USB ports, and the Gigabit Ethernet jack....plus the wLan card, but the board adds another foot to the width of the motherboard.

So I have to ask, what kind of connector is being used to interface the two boards, so I can search out a lead to relocate the networking board





I think the connector may be PCI in some way.
 

darkbreeze

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Kind of what I figured based on past experience with mobile devices, but I wasn't 100% positive. So that means there is not going to be any kind of connnector you could use between those unless you make something yourself or hardware and solder between them. That's probably not recommended either, for the faint of heart or even a seasoned pro.

Surely it's possible though, but whether or it's a good idea is another thing altogether.
 

darkbreeze

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Can't tell anything from those pics, as they are not clear enough. It's doubtful though that they are using any kind of standard connection. While it's possible, it's more likely to be a proprietary connector used only between mother and network boards across their own platform standard.

If you had clearer pics it would be easier to tell for sure.
 

k1114

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I just looked up the mobo and internals for better pics. That daughterboard has the wifi card, usb, ethernet, and esata. That's all going through that connection so it's got to be proprietary. There isn't any standard to daughterboards anyways.
 

darkbreeze

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Kind of what I figured based on past experience with mobile devices, but I wasn't 100% positive. So that means there is not going to be any kind of connnector you could use between those unless you make something yourself or hardware and solder between them. That's probably not recommended either, for the faint of heart or even a seasoned pro.

Surely it's possible though, but whether or it's a good idea is another thing altogether.
 

thatguyontheright

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If I can get the connector, it wouldn't be hard to solder up a lead, the only issue would be attenuation, if it's a factor at all. Finding the kind of connector should be easier than trying to track down soldering points, and soldering to a motherboard is tricky, especially with SMD components.

The pics are the best I can do, my phone isn't the best thing in the world, and I seem to shake a bit for some reason.
 

darkbreeze

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I seriously doubt there are any kind of compatible connectors that exist. Those two connections were intended only for use with each other or possibly a couple of other compatible upgrades/downgrades to be used in various models depending on what's called for. If anybody DID have a lead that could be used between them it might be the manufacturer for testing purposes, but I really doubt it.

As was mentioned there really aren't any standards for daughter boards, so their method of connect is really left up to the devices of the manufacturer. They are unlikely to want anybody else being able to connect their hardware to one of their boards or visa versa. Plus, there would really never be any reason to do so except when intalled directly together, as there is no intention in the design for them to be installed at a distance from each other as you are trying to do. I seriously doubt this is feasible.
 

thatguyontheright

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Well, I did some digging, it's an off the shelf component like I assumed. It's a 68 pin board to board mezzanine connector, hooked into the PCI-e bus. But looking for Male/Female connectors isn't an easy thing Digikey and mouser demand you buy them in bulk at $4 a piece for 3000...I guess not a hot ticket item.

If I were to forego this board, I would lose Gigabit...and since I am streaming 4K content in my network...gigabit is a bit necessary...can't get gigabit speeds with USB2 Ethernet adapters. There is no way to get Ethernet out of SATA with an adapter like you can with USB2, as far as I can google. Gigabit networking is my main concern.
 

thatguyontheright

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You're right, or a used workstation, and throw in a low profile video card. I have a machine that matches this description but it's louder than a jet engine so I hardly use it.
 

darkbreeze

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Noctua fans are your friend. So are BeQuiet and they can be had fairly for fairly reasonable prices depending on what size fans you need to use.

Why is that machine so loud? Is is due to case fans or a really loud stock cpu cooler fan? Likely if it's an OLD workstation, it's likely that it may have full voltage fans that didn't allow for voltage or PWM control of the fan profiles, so those configurations were loud all the time. If you build a custom setup you can easily tailor the sound levels according to what fans and how many you choose to install. Not to mention ditching the stock cooler for something much quieter.
 

thatguyontheright

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The case itself is poorly designed. The case has three fans not including the fans in the PSU CPU and GPU. The PSU is buried into the case, I think the fan whirring echos also. Then it gets hot after a while. The system isn't an ideal HTPC in my opinion since it has a massive power draw, like a regular system, so I use it as an occasional emulation box.

I've tried fabricating rubber washers to help with vibration noise from the fans. Reflowing the thermal paste on the CPU and GPU so they don't heat up as fast, still noisy.
 

darkbreeze

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Yeah, old fans and power supplies were incredibly noisy. Things are much improved from even three or four years ago much less from systems built in the mid to late 2000's. Plus current small form architectures like what can be done using the mini-ITX and 5x5 platforms available now are so efficient they can almost be built, and in some cases can, with fanless designs that make no noise and are fantastic for use as home theatre systems.
 

thatguyontheright

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I am going to look at noctua fans, also changing out the stock cooler for a silent one or a quieter one. I dunno if I could do a closed loop liquid cooling system in the case. Better yet, modify the case to use a 200mm fan.
 
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