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Windows 7: Is is common for a motherboard to get damaged by static energy?

12 Jul 2012   #11
karlsnooks

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

Yes. They are very sound.

Very correct.

Very true.

I have seen many things in my many years in electronics. I've also had the pleasure of working for a couple of companies who enjoyed the top-ratings in their respective fields. They followed sound ESD practices.

Quality comes at a price.


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12 Jul 2012   #12
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Obsessive Compulsiveness and Overkill come at a price too
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12 Jul 2012   #13
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Given the number of people who come to Crashes and Debugging asking for help with RAM that "suddenly" failed, I agree with Karl. That RAM did not suddenly fail but was likely damaged due to improper handling and disregard of static safe practices.

I also have a Master's in Electrical and Computer Engineering and have worked with NASA on the Mars rovers and in other robotics building facilities where many of the components are similar to what we put in our PCs. I had both industry experts and professors say that ESD is the number one killer of electronics that hold large quantities of miniature transistors as most computer components do these days. A person does not have to feel the static discharge for a component to be damaged and slowly fail. I use both an anti-static wrist strap and an anti-static mat when assembling PCs or replacing components.

Does that mean I think all people are required to? No. There are other methods that are mostly safe in a pinch (such as grounding oneself on metal in the PC tower, i.e. a hard disk bay), but I still highly recommend anti-static environments when it is possible to work in them.
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12 Jul 2012   #14
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Well I'm not a engineer but to think ESD should just be snuffed off in my mind is not wise. It can cause great damage. Just Google ESD and you will get 52,400,000 sites to pick from so one can understand and get help.
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12 Jul 2012   #15
DeaconFrost

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by karlsnooks View Post
I refer you disbelievers to:
That confirms you are missing my point greatly. I'm not trying to convince you that ESD doesn't exist. Nor am I trying to say that it shouldn't be considered when handling components. As I said above, the fear is greatly overblown. Again, as I said above, we don't need to build our computers in clean rooms with bunny suits. You just need to take some simple precautions and that's it. You are hellbent on convincing me that ESD is real...yet I'm not disagreeing with that. I agree completely. You just won't find system builders using mats, wrist straps, and dehumidifiers anymore.

As for the high level of memory related issues, I would be willing to bet many "issues" are caused by people improperly installing the memory, such as applying too much force to the stick while not having it exactly lined up in the slot. If you ever watch someone try to install memory and go through that...watch how much the PCB bends.

EDIT: I should clarify that I'm not taking a combative tone, and I apologize if it comes across that way. I'm not disgreeing with the existence of ESD at all. If I wanted to kill a motherboard with static, I could do it pretty easily. I'm just saying with some quick precautions, it isn't really something to fear, or a reason to scare someone away from building their own computer.
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12 Jul 2012   #16
HammerHead

win 7 X64 Ultimate SP1
 
 
It Can Happen

Just a little caution will prevent it. For those that PParks refer to, here is some links.

Dual-Conductor Wrist Straps | All-Spec Industries

Single-Conductor Wrist Straps | All-Spec Industries
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12 Jul 2012   #17
AddRAM

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

#1 If you just spent $200 to $400 for a motherboard would you not take precautions ?

#2 If you are a tech at a customers site you better be using a mat ( for Laptops ) or a wrist strap.
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13 Jul 2012   #18
Sbrideau

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Agreed with the above. I always use a wrist strap when building computers or doing maintenance (mainly clearing the dust), as well as a mat. I also saw what kind of voltage is needed to damage, to see, and to hear.
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13 Jul 2012   #19
King Arthur

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

I think both sides are correct here. Yes, ESD is a legitimate threat to sensitive electronics and they can and will damage or destroy them if proper precautions aren't taken; however, depending on what you are doing, it isn't necessarily the end of the world if you fail to use things like anti-static wrist straps and mats if you at least properly ground yourself first.
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13 Jul 2012   #20
DeaconFrost

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
#1 If you just spent $200 to $400 for a motherboard would you not take precautions ?
I rarely spend that much, but I do take more than enough precautions. I never take the mobo out of it's static bag until I am ready to install. When I do, it sits on top of the static bag, which is on top of the box, sitting on my workbench. My case is always sitting next to it, ready for the install, with the new I/O plate already snapped in. I add the proc, HSF, and memory, then immediately install the mobo to the case. My workbench is in my basement, which has a tile floor, so no carpet to worry about.

Those are the precautions I take, and I don't feel that there's anything more I need to do. I don't take components out and let them sit around. They are either in static bags, or installed in computers.
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 Is is common for a motherboard to get damaged by static energy?




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