Need pin outs for Power, switch, and HDD LED

Posted on 2008-11-14
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I am putting my dell machine into a new antec case as the GPU is always overheating in the original Dell box since I put in a new radeon 3850 graphics card. I have managed around all of Dells oddeties and gotten the MB mounted. Now I just need to know where to connect the leads from the case for Power switch, HDD LED and Power LED. Naturally Dell is keeping this a secret. If anyone can tell me which of the pins are for what I would be really grateful.
Question by:Anjinsan5
    LVL 39

    Expert Comment

    If you can post a picture of pin header onborad, that would be great. However, I would configure like below and if you connect it backwards, no harm is done. Assume the pin header is 10 (2x5):

    Left led and right led are for the power and harddisk leds.
    1-2 is power led, the green lead is + wire 3 to 5

    6-7 is harddisk led, the red lead is +

    8-9 is power switch, doesn't matter what way you connect.

    Author Comment

    do you know if anyone has made an adapter for the "front panel connector" that Dell uses rather than the standard jumpers that everyone else uses. I have tried attaching the leads from the case into the pins on the ribbon connector and they: #1: Don't seem to work and #2: don't stay on.
    LVL 39

    Expert Comment

    There is nothing standard from Dell, HP, or such manufacturing. If you can find similar system and check wire color codes and that would help you out.
    Sorry I dont have Dimension here to check and suggest you more information.
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution

    I have migrated custom computers into standard cases for people, and for some, there is no easy solution. I have looked at the documentation for your computer at
    and saw the front I/O panel at

    You're going to need to see where the wires go from the switch and LED cables to that little circuit board in the original case. I would use a continuity tester to be sure, considering the way they have everything crammed together over the ribbon cables. You may end up doing what I do with Dells, which is pulling apart the ribbon cable and solder up a custom header connector to the board itself. With a fine point soldering iron, it's not too difficult. Connectors are even a good place to learn to solder because you don't have to worry about overheating a transistor and killing a board. You can add headers to the little board. The male breakaway headers I recommend can be seen at the bottom of this page about building robots:

    A shot of how this could look is this image:

    It doesn't have to be pretty. It might be easier to find a standard motherboard that is compatible with the processor, memory and cards and replace the mobo by itself. I had to do that with a GW machine that I worked on a while ago.

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