Problems with aligning internal audio cards properly in HAF X -case

Discussion in 'hardware' started by Spysnake, Oct 4, 2011.

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  1. Spysnake

    Spysnake Registered Member

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    Hello all.

    I have a project which has been on for several months - I have slowly built a new computer which is supposed to be a silent enough setup with some serious power for gaming and other heavy use. However, I have now run into a problem which I can't solve by myself (or with my retailer), so I would like feedback from veteran PC builders on this one.

    The problem is this: I can't align my Asus Xonar audio cards properly with the backplate on Coolermaster HAF X case. I actually have two different cases (both Coolermaster HAF X), two different motherboards from different manufacturers (one Asus with PCI, one MSI with only PCIE) and two different Asus Xonar cards (one PCI, one PCIE). The reason for this is that I had to troubleshoot this for a pretty long time.

    The problem persist with all the parts. The audio card is either connected to the motherboard and unable to align with the backplate, or connected with screw to the backplate, but atleast half out of the socket.

    I have seen this problem reported on Coolermaster website, but I don't want to believe that I have gotten two faulty cases, as these cost 200 euros each. Link about the problem below:

    http://forum.coolermaster.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=15143&sid=4d75a2b0ba8a217db3bdf3cf681b5906

    Pictures about the problem are provided as attachments. Blue ones are PCI-Express, while the white ones are normal PCI. The screw hole picture is from the PCI-E one, but it is the same case with both of them.

    What can I do about this? Should I maybe return both cases and buy something else entirely? Or do you suspect that the problem could be something other than the cases?
     

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  2. cozumel

    cozumel Registered Member

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    Hi,

    I've had that on more than one occasion and it's really frustrating as you want everything to fit perfectly on your shiny new system. For me, it's always been the fault with the cards not aligning correctly. It was the tab on the underneath of the card bracket of the cards that fits into the slot of the case. I checked it by trying another card (TV, network, whatever) in the same slots and they fitted perfectly.

    My solution was to use something like a needle nose pliers to carefully realign the tab on the card to allow correct installation. Worked almost every time (failed once only)
     
  3. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

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    @ Spysnake

    Hi, first off, congrats on building your own system :thumb: Sorry to hear about your problems.

    If cozumel's solution doesn't help, could you fit a washer/s - spacer/s over the screw thread, between the card sockets plate & the back panel ? Or combine both methods ?

    Not ideal, but better to seat the card 100% i'd say ;)
     
  4. Spysnake

    Spysnake Registered Member

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    Thank you for your responses.

    I'll keep those in mind. I just need to test the ports with something non-Xonar first an determine if it's the cause. I got an another picture which seems rather strange - of course it's a little angled picture so the misalignment (is that a word? sorry for my english!) is overexaggerated, but it still seems that the whole motherboard may be somehow tilted? In the picture the screw hole is out of place, but the audio card is firmly in the socket.
     

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  5. cozumel

    cozumel Registered Member

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    Any update??
     
  6. Spysnake

    Spysnake Registered Member

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    Sadly, not yet. I decided to buy a cheap PCI-E USB card and will try it on the motherboards to determine whether it is the cases or the audio cards, when the card arrives. I'm somewhat of a perfectionist, so modifying the brackets is reserved as a last resort.

    I have also found some more threads around the internet about the same problem with these cases. Is this a common problem? Never ran into this before.
     
  7. cozumel

    cozumel Registered Member

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    Hi Spysnake,

    When I gave the info in earlier and referred to one fail I ended up making a slight mod to the card bracket (with tin snips) to make it fit.

    Regarding your question. It is rare, but it is a problem that large numbers of people have faced.

    I was also checking CoolerMaster forums before your last post and it appears that some users are clear in stating that the fault is with the HAF-X case.

    Before doing an RMA (as some appear to have done) it would be good to confirm.

    Try to install one of the Xonar into a system of a friend/family or work. No need to power up. Just see if it fits. If it does, that rules out the card.

    Then you need to check motherboard has slots all aligned correctly. Do you know anyone who has an old ATX motherboard (could be mobo that has blown or 10 years old as long as it has PCI)? Install mobo into CM chassis with standoffs and see if card installs. Maybe a friendly pc shop could assist with this if you cannot source an old mobo. They may allow to check with a blown mobo for free. Maybe they have one they were going to throw in the trash?

    Although in my instances it was 100% confirmed as card issue, it could also be the chassis or mobo where the fault lies for your problem. And since you have a right to demand components that are perfect, it would be good to confirm exactly which one of them is at fault before RMA.


    Edit: Sorry. You are already checking the cards with an adapter card for which you are waiting arrival.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2011
  8. zfactor

    zfactor Registered Member

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    not from your exact issue but also make sure to check your top mount usb cables where they are soldered the haf x has a tendency to have the solder point on the board poke through one of the wires and fry the connections on mobo's their "fix" was a thin piece of plastic but there are now issues of it poking through that also, long thread at overclock.net if i can find it i stopped selling the hafx we had to many issues with them over and over
     
  9. Spysnake

    Spysnake Registered Member

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    Finally an update!

    First, thank you for your replies.

    I was able to pinpoint the problem, and it indeed was the case. I tried every combination with these parts, as I had an opportunity to use them:

    Asus Sabertooth P67 -motherboard
    MSI Z68A-GD80 -motherboard
    Akasa USB3 PCIe x1 -the usb card I was talking about
    Asus Xonar DX -sound card
    Coolermaster Elite -series case

    The problem appeared only with HAF X. With the Elite-series case (which costs ironically the 1/3 of HAF X's price) the screwholes align perfectly.

    Now waiting for the RMA prodecure to finish.

    I have few questions for you though.

    I have heard of the soldering problem which zfactor mentioned, but are there clear pictures of the problem? I haven't been able to locate them.

    And, in case of this being a problem which doesn't go away with RMA, which full tower case would you guys suggest for my setup? I value mostly quality, and very good airflow, as this is a gaming computer. Silence properties are a plus, but I can make it silent enough with the right fan choices.
     
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