Emachine W3503 replacement motherboard?

By cfahr ยท 9 replies
Aug 28, 2010
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  1. A handicapped friend of ours has an emachine W3503 with a bad motherboard. We are trying to help him get his computer back up and running as inexpensively as possible since he is living on a very low fixed income. Can this be replaced, and if so, what would I order?
    Thank you
  2. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,967   +2,524

    Probably Not the Answer You Were Hoping For.......

    The problem with replacing the motherboard in an Emachine is the extravagant price they will charge you. Also, the power supply is most probably also bad, either by virtue of it killing the board, or being killed by it. I absolutely do not recommend buying a board off Ebay, that's sort of asking to be ripped off.

    Here's the specs on your machine http://www.emachines.com/support/product_support.html?cat=Desktops&subcat=W Series&model=W3503

    That's pretty much bad news as well, since the Emachine in question has DDR type memory, which would likely have to be replaced with any board you might find today.

    The standard treatment for this is to buy a different aftermarket board, and a decent PSU. However, the copy of Windows that came with the machine dies with the board, and would have to be purchased also.

    This is representative of a type of board that would fit your chassis; http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...rder=BESTMATCH&Description=Intel+G31+&x=0&y=0 and allow you to use your CPU. These boards are about 50 bucks. A replacement Emachine board might be on the order of up to 200 dollars. The upgrade parts I mentioned can be had for about 300 dollars, including the copy of Windows. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116752 This is the OEM version, and you would need to order it with the parts.

    As I said, you would also require new memory, a PSU, and a copy of Windows.

    PS, The Celeron 356 in that machine is a "Cedar Mill" chip. These were the best single core Celerons (Pentium 4 type architecture) produced. (Until chips based in the new "Core 2 Duo" technology became available). They are however, less than pitiful by contemporary standards. Again, sorry if I ruined your day.
  3. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,484   +45

    In short you'll have to buy at least half a new machine, in which the half you buy is unusable unless you buy a fresh copy of windows.
  4. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,967   +2,524

    Smash,I may be slightly verbose, but at least I divulged which half that had to be bought. :rolleyes:

    Actually, it's rather a shame, BB was pushing that ATI chipset board, in low end machines at holiday sales, I grabbed one for $330.00, with a monitor. Now it's about $300.00 to fix it, with the new OS
  5. cfahr

    cfahr TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you for all the help and info. He did give me a Windows XP disk to install. Would I need to order a heatsink/fan? From the pictures on NewEgg I did not see one on the MB.
  6. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,967   +2,524

    OK, if this is in fact, a genuine Windows disc, you're good to go. However, if it's the "restore" disc that came with the Emachine, you will not be able to use it. I fear the latter.

    As to the HSF, if it mounts with the standard Intel push-pins, most likely yes. If Emachines has invoked a more proprietary cooling "solution", maybe yes, maybe no.

    CPU coolers are provided with boxed retail processors. They are never supplied with motherboard packages. A unit suitable for your purposes, (if necessary),would be in the area of 10 to 20 dollars. For the intended use, you really wouldn't need anything fancy. This for example;http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103039

    Of the boards I linked, I would go for the Gigabyte brand.

    You need to research how to install the CPU cooler.

    You need to learn anti-static procedures, so you don't kill any parts with static discharge.

    Have fun, post back if you need more info.
  7. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    Well, eMachines has made a LOT of mistakes on these... Despite the 67 percent failure rate by the end of the third year..
    The restore disk will VERY OFTEN work on a system where the motherboard has been replaced by a non-eMachines board. We find eMachines restore disks work nearly 45 percent of the time... the trick is if you are trying to restore a current hard drive that has data. The eMachines restore disk will wipe the hard drive and cause you to lose all your data.
    eMachines no longer has the replacement board for that model available, and when they did, they were $179 plus shipping, and it too three to four weeks for them to arrive.
    Now that eMachines is owned by Acer, you might find things different, as I haven't checked since they moved the eMachines administration back to Korea... so you might want to check so you can teach us TechSpot folks..
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,967   +2,524

    So we're clear, you are categorizing the restore disc working in a different board a "mistake"? Since this is a far cry from earlier press releases about "tatooed BIOS(es)", and whatnot.

    That said, if the restore discs work, there would be no logical reason to research, and certainly no reason to buy, an Emachines replacement board.

    I have one of these ATI chipset/ Celeron machines, and it would allow to make as many copies of the restore discs as you chose. (I assume that this is one of the "many mistakes")? However, this is certainly not true in my earlier Intel P-4 / 915GAG T-5026. One chance, no more.

    I also would like to point out that whatever failure rate you would feel obliged to quote on the T-5026, mine is plugging along just fine, approaching the 6 year mark. :) (Didn't want you to think I'd mellowed). :rolleyes:
  9. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    No, not really. I am just saying that a great number of eMachines restore disks we have used, worked fin on non-branded motherboards... Of course I am aware that this should not be... But someone on this forum said it worked for them. It is the motherboard that is controlling, with the restore disk looking for code before it will complete. It is a requirement of Microsoft of course, as you know. But still we have found quite a number of eMachines restore disks that work on a non-branded system board.

    CaptainCranky and I have had a number of differences on eMachines. Whereas he seems to like them a lot, I have never found an eMachine I could love... whether desktop or laptop, if it was built after Aapril 2002.

    No0 other company, except for Packard Bell, has scr*d their buyers more often than eMachines...

    These problem areas are in Intel-designed motherboards that eMachines tookever and built in their own factories... resulting in the highest failure rates of any boards since Packard Bell moved to England.
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,967   +2,524

    No, I have no love for Emachines, but I have no complaint against the one unit I have in service.

    As far as Packard Bell in England, perhaps they've studied and implemented Jaguar's quality control strategy. (An old boss of mine had an XJ-12 that spent more time in the shop than on the road).

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