If you have never built a computer from scratch before, it’s actually not as difficult as it looks or sound. I usually start by doing a simple test assembly with certain key components outside the case before putting them into the PC case, in case one of the core components doesn’t work. It makes the testing processes a lot easier later on.
Starting with the motherboard, the minimum you need to “boot” this baby up – is to:
- install the CPU,
- plug in the 24 pin motherboard connector,
- plug in the CPU power (not quite visible in the screenshot)
- (optional) plug in your memory modules as well if you have them.
- (ideally) you need a display, so you know the system is posting.
Motherboards used to come with a small speaker which you can attach to hear post “beep” codes so you can check the status of the boot without a display. This motherboard, sadly, didn’t come with one, but it did come with some handy LEDs that do the same thing.
But wait – how do I turn this on?
Ah, while some motherboards come with an onboard power switch for speedy diagnostics, this motherboard has none, even though it’s supposedly a mid-range premium board *cough* ASUS *cough*.
Anyway, the easy solution would be – to short-circuit the power pins. Sounds mega cool – but it’s just a fancy phrase for “touching the power switch pins with a metal object”.
You can do this with a screwdriver, which you should have one handy, since, you know, you’re building a computer.
So look into your Motherboard manual, find out which 2 metal pins are for your Power switch, it should show like this:
If you have everything aforementioned connected correctly (24 pins + CPU installed + CPU power) then the system should boot up – and HOLY MOLY SO MUCH RAINBOW!!
Is it safe without a CPU cooler?
It’s fine (to a degree), as long as you don’t leave it running for a long time. Once you have verified that the CPU and memory modules are being detected correctly, you can turn it off using the same short-circuiting trick.
At this point, you can start installing the motherboard into the case, but I’d recommend checking your case for routing spaces and see whether you can save a few hours of a headache by pre-installing some of the firmer cables now, rather than later when you have less room to maneuver.
I shall see you in the next blog post!