8RDA+, Bulging & Leaking Caps -- Time to Upgrade? 9NPA+ Ultra or 8KDA3+ Pro?

Discussion in 'Epox' started by Margaret Wilson, Nov 18, 2005.

  1. Hello,

    I love my 8RDA+ (rev 1.1), but today I opened it up to rebuild it in a
    larger case, and I see that the caps around the I/O panel, video card and
    USB headers are bulging and have leaked. The system is still running right
    now, and though I can't find my receipt, I know I purchased it at Newegg
    sometime in 2003. (Not quite enough data in my Quicken file to locate the
    exact order, though with some digging I'm sure I can find it.) I just
    finally registered my board at the US site (didn't know I could before), and
    I submitted a trouble ticket explaining my issue. Does anyone in the US
    have experience getting boards replaced or repaired? The manual says
    nothing about a warranty, let alone how long it might be. Should be
    something like 3 years, right?

    Anyway, if possible, I'd like to get this board repaired, but I'm thinking I
    will keep it as a test system and take this opportunity to build a new one.
    I'd planned on the 9NPA+ Ultra, but money is a little tight right now, so
    I'm also considering the 8KDA3+ Pro, though I know it will have a shorter
    lifespan than the 9NPA+ Ultra. Can anyone comment on either of these
    boards? I'd like to see how Epox handles support for my existing board, and
    I'd also like to avoid buying yet another board with bad caps. But I don't
    know how long my existing board will keep running, so I'm feeling rather
    pressed to order something now. All comments welcome, and feel free to
    recommend something else! :)

    Thanks and Regards,

    Margaret Wilson, Nov 18, 2005
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  2. Margaret Wilson

    DaveL Guest


    As long as it keeps working then let it be. Mine was like that and I used
    it in that condition for a long time. Then it began not booting up. I
    could get it to boot if I hit the reset button a few times. It looked like
    the chipset voltage was going low. This problem got worse and worse as the
    days went on. I pulled the board and made a list of all the bulging caps.
    In my case, all of the green caps were bad or going bad. The black ones
    were ok. I bought enough caps to do two 8RDA+s because I have two of them.
    I replaced them on my main box (I'm typing on it now). The other one is not
    malfunctioning yet. It's a hard job to do. It took me about two hours.
    There are people who will do it for you for a fee. You can try shooting
    Epox tech support an email. But watch out. I heard their email server went
    berzerk recently and sent 5,000 confirmation replies to some guy. I've
    heard Epox will repair or exchange your board for a fee.

    DaveL, Nov 18, 2005
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  3. Margaret Wilson

    DaveL Guest

    Oh I forgot to say.

    If I was to upgrade I would go with socket 939.

    DaveL, Nov 18, 2005
  4. Yep.

    About three months ago, my 8RDA+ failed, and as a number of the caps were
    bulging I made the logical assumption that this was the problem.

    It took a couple go-rounds with the web-based support before they actually
    started listening to me and not providing canned responses that suggested I
    try precisely what I'd carefully delineated to them.

    The upshot: the board was well out of warranty, and they took it back for
    repair (actually replacement, as it a different board came back) and didn't
    charge me a cent. So all it cost me was to FedEx it a few miles up the road;
    they don't allow in-person transactions. That's more than impressive in my
    book; I would have willingly paid for the service or for replacement caps to
    solder in myself. It was gone about 15 or 16 days.

    Needless to say, Epox will be at the top of my candidates list when this
    2500+ system reaches the point of being sufficiently off the curve to merit


    Temporary usercode - to be deleted when spam starts. Use MyBrainHurts at this ISP to reach me
    Arthur Shapiro, Nov 19, 2005
  5. This is good news, Arthur. I haven't heard back from them yet, but after
    all, I submitted my trouble ticket on a Friday afternoon.... How long is
    the warranty? Is it just a year? The manual doesn't say, and I'm wondering
    if the three-year thing sticking in my head is because my Antec PSUs have
    three-year warranties. I wonder if Epox will make me wait to do anything
    till the board actually dies. Usually I don't fix what isn't broken, but it
    would be nice to get this taken care of before the board goes and perhaps
    takes another component with it.

    BTW, this is my first Epox board, and aside from the caps going bad, I'm
    very impressed with it. I've built systems using boards from SuperMicro,
    Asus, Abit and Via, and I have to say Epox is the best. Good to hear their
    US support is good.

    Thanks and Regards,

    Margaret Wilson, Nov 19, 2005
  6. I'm under the vague impression that the warranty is three years.

    And other MB manufacturers have been hit by the same problem, as I'm sure they
    all buy from the same small set of OEMers. For some reason, one seems to hear
    more about it affecting Epox boards.

    Obviously I can't say whether their response to my failure was typical, or
    whether it was just a matter of lucking into someone who cared. What a
    pleasure compared to my dealings with Soyo over the years.

    Arthur Shapiro, Nov 22, 2005
  7. Wow, I'm impressed. I just logged into the Epox USA site to check the
    status of my trouble ticket, and they've issued an RMA. Great service
    indeed. I just ordered an 8RDA3+Pro from Newegg, will return the 8RDA+
    when I get the new board.


    Margaret Wilson, Nov 22, 2005
  8. I'm probably not the only poor soul overwhelmed by the profusion of models
    from most of the manufacturers these days.

    Can I ask what features led you to purchase that particular board?

    Arthur Shapiro, Nov 22, 2005
  9. It's basically the same board as the 8RDA+, plus it has two SATA ports.
    (Con is that it doesn't have Soundstorm audio, just RealTek.) I'd
    just picked up a Seagate SATA 250GB drive to add to my system and
    purchased a two-port SATA adapter to go with it, only to discover that
    the caps were going on my 8RDA+. Considering the adapter cost me ~$50,
    I returned it. But I still need to add some disk space, and all my PATA
    ports are full. Then I discovered Newegg was selling the 8RDA3+Pro for
    ~$70, so for essentially a $20 difference in price, I can add that SATA
    drive to my system. ...And I won't have to reinstall the OS (or do much
    of a repair, since the two boards are so close in architecture). But
    now I find that Epox will repair my beloved 8RDA+ for the cost of
    shipping. Assuming I keep the 8RDA3+Pro, I have enough spare parts to
    build up an additional system once I get the 8RDA+ back, so I'm thinking
    I might do that and sell it. I've already put the SATA drive in my
    second system (Abit NF7-S2), so I'm accessing it across my LAN. Now I'm
    thinking I might just return the 8RDA3+Pro when it arrives. Can't decide.

    Ideally, if I were to build a new system today, I'd go 64-bit and use
    the 9NPA+Ultra. But I'm waiting for the 64-bit Vista, which won't be
    out before next summer, so the longer I wait, the more I'll get for my $$.

    Anyway, that's my story. :)


    Margaret Wilson, Nov 22, 2005
  10. Margaret Wilson

    DaveL Guest

    The faulty caps were made by ECS. I hope there was a class action lawsuit
    against them from all electronic component companies.

    DaveL, Nov 23, 2005
  11. Just an update:

    Epox USA Support issued an RMA number within 24 hours. They tell me
    once they receive the board, turnaround time is one week, and then it
    will be returned to me via UPS ground. Great service (so far). :)


    Margaret Wilson, Nov 25, 2005
  12. Margaret Wilson

    Tom Goodman Guest

    I'm probably not the only poor soul overwhelmed by the profusion of models
    from most of the manufacturers these days.

    Can I ask what features led you to purchase that particular board?

    I've just ordered an 8RDA6+Pro from Atelco germany, and I see that it's
    fundamentally the same board, but with 6 S-ATA ports, 2 + 4, so a
    proper RAID with striping and mirroring is possible: speed and seccurity.
    Tom Goodman, Nov 25, 2005
  13. I've just ordered an 8RDA6+Pro from Atelco germany, and I see that it's
    fundamentally the same board, but with 6 S-ATA ports, 2 + 4, so a
    proper RAID with striping and mirroring is possible: speed and seccurity.[/QUOTE]

    I changed my mind and cancelled the order for the 8RDA3+Pro. Instead, I
    decided it's time to build a 64-bit system. So I ordered a 9NPA+Ultra
    and paired it with an Athlon 3800 Venice. I had a matched pair of
    Kingston HyperX DDR400 in my 8RDA+, which will do nicely in the new
    board. (I can add another pair down the road and have a 2GB system.)
    Plus, I have 1GB of DDR333 lying around that will go into the 8RDA+ when
    it returns. I have enough spair parts that put together, I will have
    *three* systems ... as well as a spare CPU and other misc parts. I'll
    probably keep the repaired 8RDA+ long enough to make sure both it and
    the new system are stable, and then I'll sell the 8RDA+. Thank goodness
    I have a spare system that I use as a file and video server, or I'd be
    without a working computer right now. :)

    When the time comes, the question is, do I sell the 8RDA+ as a whole
    system or in parts? It's still a very nice system, but I do need more
    oomph for video processing/DVD authoring. Had the 8RDA+ not suffered
    the bad caps, I wouldn't be upgrading right now. But I'm not
    complaining. I'd have upgraded by summer, anyway. :)


    Margaret Wilson, Nov 26, 2005
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