Thursday, 5 November 2009

How A Capacitor Is Not Supposed To Look

This is on an Intel X38BT Extreme series motherboard:


There is something definitely growing on top of the one capacitor down near the video card and just to the right of the memory stick on the right. It is brown and crusty and reminds me of a barnacle.

The system and board happen to be running quite stable as it does run 24x7 with the occasional reboot for an update.

The situation was discovered when showing a client the internal workings of this particular system which just happens to be sitting on my desk.

An RMA request has been placed with Intel for a replacement which we should see tomorrow.

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*Our original iMac was stolen (previous blog post). We now have a new MacBook Pro courtesy of Vlad Mazek, owner of OWN.

Windows Live Writer

1 comment:

Chris said...

Hey Philip,

The brown stuff is the dielectric in the capacitor.

The "K" on top of a capacitor is a stamp to weaken the top cap so that when a capacitor fails, it fails out of the "top", instead of the bottom possibly damaging the board.

As you might recall, Dell received quite a reputation for unstable machines for a brief period a few years ago, apparently it was when their capacitor manufacturer was dabbling with different dielectrics and the new capacitors had a higher failure rate.