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Build Advice Motherboard scratch build?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by MageOutlaw, 9 Mar 2013.

  1. MageOutlaw

    MageOutlaw What's a Dremel?

    3 Apr 2006
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    Ok, im in no way trying to build a custom motherboard (right now :naughty: ) but im just wondering if anyone has built a custom from scratch motherboard before and how hard it was. More precis has anyone built a laptop/netbook motherboard?
  2. jrs77

    jrs77 Modder

    17 Feb 2006
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    A motherboard has usually multiple layers (four for most basic motherboards and six for normal intel/AMD-boards, so I guess noone here has ever built his own motherboard, as I guess noone has the tools to build it.
  3. Neogumbercules

    Neogumbercules What's a Dremel?

    14 Aug 2004
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    I ain't no computer scientist but I'm gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that it's probably impossible to build a custom motherboard without expensive, industrial equipment.

    Sent from Bittech Android app
  4. play_boy_2000

    play_boy_2000 ^It was funny when I was 12

    25 Mar 2004
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    Do you have the following requirements?
    1: PhD in electrical engineering
    2: access to a sophisticated PCB layout program
    3: a ton of cash and time to burn

    If so, go for it.... otherwise, stick with off the shelf kit.
  5. debs3759

    debs3759 Was that a warranty I just broke?

    10 Oct 2011
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    You don't need a PhD to design a circuit board, get it made and install (solder) the components. I don't think you would even need a particularly sophisticated app to design it. I think your third statement is the only one that is accurate - getting a board prototyped won't be cheap, and it'll be impossible with cheap kit you might use at home. Time and the cost of the PCB will be the worst elements of such a build.

    Saying all that, it's not impossible. Most motherboards are not too complex, as most of the complexity is built into the CPU and chipset.
  6. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    Hold on, let me just ask our RD team...


    EDIT: Simpler stuff like MIPS or maybe even ARM could be done. I doubt a very simple Raspberry Pi is that hard to make if you have to white papers, proper software and testing parts.
    Last edited by a moderator: 10 Mar 2013
  7. Bladesingerz

    Bladesingerz Minimodder

    30 Nov 2011
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    I think it would take you a long time and a fortune to make one..
    Don't forget that motherboards are one of the most complicated things in a computer, they aren't just copper lanes that connect things to each other but also contain chips to control things like power or data transfer.

    It would be an awesome project though, but nearly impossible..
  8. PabloFunky

    PabloFunky What's a Dremel?

    19 Sep 2010
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    Designing a motherboard wouldnt be impossible.

    When i used to work at various manufacture and design companies, we used to make fairly complex circuits.

    However we tried to stick with double sided pcbs for reasonable simplicity.

    Cad design and autorouting software has come along way since then.

    We would always send more complex designs out to pcb making company though.

    If i recall resonably complex designs to have an empty circuit board made up for us was costing us around £300 per smalish board.
    Also try to avoid getting silkscreen layers and solder resist, to keep cost down, but its still gonna be pricey.

    Obviously we were then purchasing in 5,000 up pieces, once we had populated the prototype calibrated and tested the design etc.

    Also sometimes the prototype would need to be modded, kynar wire all over the place etc etc, so sometimes 2 or 3 prototypes would be need to be made till we were 100% happy.

    Aslong as you didnt want a mobo to compete with current SMT automated populating, multilayer etc etc, it is deffo not impossible to make.

    But personally im sticking with simpler designs if i ever decide to make any circuits anymore.
  9. IvanIvanovich

    IvanIvanovich будет глотать вашу душу.

    31 Aug 2008
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    I haven't seen any single person make from scratch anything more modern than motherboard for 8086. But there has been a few done to replace old Apple, Atari, Commodore and the like in the retro scene. Many times those have ended up turning into a product as well though when successful.

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