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Athlon DDR Article Index

1. Introduction

2. Iwill KA266-R Specs

3. Parts Shopping

4. DDR Athlon Building Requirements

5. Computer Building Steps

6. Install DDR RAM and Accessory Connectors then Power-on Test

7. Install Drives and Peripherals

8. Motherboard and Peripherals Evaluation

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Building a 1.2 GHz DDR Athlon with the Iwill KA266-R Motherboard

Install DDR RAM and Accessory Connectors then Power-on Test

4. Install DDR RAM. DRAM installation is usually pretty straight forward as there usually is only one way a DRAM can be correctly inserted into the motherboard.
DRAMs must be firmly seated into their connectors to function correctly. Whatever you do, don't try to force Drams into connectors. If the DIMM doesn't seem to fit, turn it around as you could be inserting it backwards.

Tip: Review your motherboard manual carefully to determine the correct way to face your DDR SDRAMs on the motherboard.


Crucial PC2100 DDR 184-pin DIMM module

DDR and Bus Speed. Currently there are two speeds of DDR RAM; 100 and 133 MHz. As it is double data rate, this translates to 200 and 266 MHz speed.
PC1600 DDR is the 200 MHz DDR RAM and PC2100 is the 266 MHz DDR RAM.
The RAM you should buy depends on the bus speed you plan to use. If you will be using the the 266 MHz Athlon bus you need PC2100 (266 MHz) DDR. If you will just be using 200 MHz Athlons and have no intention of upgrading to a 266 MHz Athlon (or overclocking to 266 MHz) then you could save a couple of bucks on PC1600 (200 MHz) DDR.
Using PC2100 DDR with a 200 MHz bus will result in no increase in speed over PC1600 DDR.

Next its time to attach the computer case accessory connectors.

5. Attach the Accessory Connectors. Typical computer case accessory connectors that need to be attached to the motherboard include power switch, reset switch, power LED, and hard drive LED. While this is pretty straight forward in concept, it can get tricky without good motherboard documentation. After hard study of several diagrams in the Iwill KA266-R manual, and much counting of the accessory pins on the motherboard, I finally felt confident enough to attach the connectors.
The key to attaching the connectors was knowing that white wires were the ground wires. Sometimes the motherboard accessory pinout would not show a distinction in the two connector wires, in which case I assumed neither wire was a ground.


The case accessory wires attached to the
motherboard. White is the ground wire
.

Tip: The case accessory wires must be connected correctly or you could ground out your motherboard.

6. Attach case fan power cable. Attach the front computer case fan to one of your large size drive power connectors for the forthcoming power-up test.

7. Install the video card and power-on test. Now that the CPU and DDR RAM are installed, the accessory connectors are attached, and the case and CPU fans are connected, it's time to test your handiwork.
Clear away any junk you have left lying on the case, and insert your AGP video card. The AGP video card must be firmly seated in the connector or you will not get a picture on your monitor. After initially seating the card, press down on both corners to ensure its pushed all the way into the connector.
Attach your monitor cable to the video connector and plug the monitor into an electrical outlet. Find the power plug for your system and attach it to the power connector on the back of your case. Plug the case power cord into an electrical outlet and get your good luck talisman out.
Press in your case's power button and hopefully your system will boot-up. If successful you will get the usual report about what video card is installed and your system will perform the DOS memory check. You will not get to much more information before you receive a disk or keyboard failure.
Congratulations! You now know the motherboard is correctly inserted in the case, the CPU is working, DDR RAM is functioning, the video card works, and the accessory wires are correctly attached. While the power is still running, check and make sure that the CPU, case, and power supply fans are all operating correctly.

Next we install Drives and Peripherals >>>

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