MSI motherboard wiring is standard for most models, and the system that is used to wire them can be applied to nearly any other motherboard. Most wires only have one place that they can be plugged in. Learn how to connect power supply cables, front panel switches and indicator lights, expansion USB and HD audio ports, external hanger bracket ports and drive data cables to MSI motherboards.
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Things you need
- Anti-static wrist strap
- MSI motherboard
- Case and power supply
- Screwdriver set
- Nylon cable ties
Connect the alligator clip of the anti-static wrist strap to the case and to one wrist.
Plug the main 20+4 pin power connector into the motherboard socket marked "ATXPWR1" until it clips into place. Plug the auxiliary 4-pin square CPU power connector into the socket marked "PWR1" near the CPU.
Connect the floppy drive cable to the port on the motherboard marked "FDD1" using the plastic key tab on the cable and the alignment notch cut into the socket for proper orientation of the cable.
Plug the IDE cable, if present, into the port on the motherboard marked "IDE1" using the plastic key tab on the cable and the alignment notch cut into the socket for proper orientation of the cable.
Plug the SATA data cable from the primary hard drive into the port marked "SATA1" on the motherboard. Plug additional SATA data cables into the other SATA ports in sequence if present.
Attach the serial port hanger bracket cable to the port marked "JCOM1" if present. Use the missing pin on the connector for proper orientation of the cable.
Connect the power lead from the CPU fan into the power connector marked "CPUFAN1" on the motherboard near the CPU socket. Plug the case cooling fan into the power connector on the motherboard marked "SYSFAN1" if the power plug is the correct size; otherwise use a matching lead directly from the power supply to power the case cooling fan.
Connect the CD Audio cable from the CD ROM drive, if present, to the connector on the motherboard marked "JCD1." When the markings on the motherboard are right side up, the left channel is on the left side, the two centre pins are grounded, and the right channel is on the right side. This plug can be inserted in either direction with the result of left and right channels being swapped.
Connect the front panel audio connector to the port on the motherboard marked "JAUD1" using the missing pin as an indicator for the proper orientation.
Connect the front panel and rear hanger bracket USB expansion ports to the connectors marked "JUSB1," "JUSB2," and "JUSB3" on the motherboard, using the missing pin as an indicator for proper orientation.
Connect the hanger bracket S/PDIF output lead, if present, to the port marked "SPDOUT1" using the tab on the connector as an indicator of proper orientation.
Connect the front panel leads to the motherboard connector marked "JFP1" using the following pins as indicated by the markings on the motherboard and the front panel leads: HDD LED on Pins 1 and 3; power LED on Pins 2 and 4; reset switch on Pins 5 and 7; and the power switch on Pins 6 and 8.
Connect the chassis intrusion detection lead to the port marked "JCI1" on the motherboard if present.
Connect the IEEE1394 / FireWire hanger bracket port to the motherboard at the location marked "J1394_1" if present.
Tie off the cables into loose bundles using nylon cable ties, allowing room inside each bundle to slide the cables if necessary.
Tips and warnings
- Most connections to the motherboard are keyed so that they will fit only one way to ensure proper orientation. Tie wires together, with nylon cable ties, into loose bundles to organise the inside of the case and increase the flow of cool air inside the case, but do not tighten the cable ties tight enough to damage the insulators.
- Electrostatic discharge can cause severe damage to sensitive components if an anti-static wrist strap or other device is not used when working on computers. Back up all data prior to opening the case of a computer when possible.
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