From this prior post : http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/19657974?pi21953=3
There is not point in modifying or upgtrading the PS in this machine as the board is the limitation.
Using a 24 to 8 adapter will only cause you problems down the road.
I do now know the pin-outs on the 6 pin jr molex the SATA power cable comes off of and I have made up a custom harness. Dell doubles up the 12 volt wires with a cheap splice in the factory harness.
You will have problems upgrading the heatsink on the processor I used a Noctua and it required drive cage modification.
All the factory cables used are low quality. The MB is made by Foxconn for Dell. The PWM fan connectors have some odd modification added by Foxconn for Dell.
You cannot buy and of the upgrade harnesses from Dell as they do not stock them. Blue drive cages are hard to get and way overpriced.
I can build harnesses for this if anyone is interested.
I have to disagree with you on all points.
"There is not point in modifying or upgtrading the PS in this machine as the board is the limitation."
This is false in its entirety. The power supply is the limitation.
"Using a 24 to 8 adapter will only cause you problems down the road."
This is also false. No Idea how you make this assertion as it has not been a problem for several months now. I do not foresee it being a problem ever. All of the power harness issues and power output issues disappear when replacing the power supply.
Well I'd have to say you're actually incorrect and the first post was correct dell support specifically explained to me that upgrading to anything over the 240watt psu will cause capacitors to bulge and swell which will ultimately lead to your pc which is expected to have a 5 year lifespan dying in roughly half that time
I agree with Jolynn315, I build custom computers and do modifications to OEM's as well. Dell cuts the fine limit of how much power the power supply can deliver (which is BTW theoretical, as the max is a combined load, and is, and never was intended to be, a constant load at the high level. Most loads to the PS are INTERMITTENT, not constant, components with motors (platter drives, optical drives, and fans are the biggest draws). You can look at the size of the delivery molex and wire diameters and see easily what this power supply is capable of and the board, then the next oem cutback would be the size and type of capacitors on the motherboard. To limit their cost, which is only pennies, the cut the capacitor size and storage capability to the bare minimum, and then use CHEAP chemical caps instead of solid state caps, of which have a known longer lifespan, and better ability to do an accurate job of storing power. Look at any of the aftermarket motherboard manufactures today, Gigabyte, MSI, EVGA and Asus who does not make their own boards, they all use solid state caps for ALL the caps on their current boards. Chemical caps are only used by OEM's and on really cheap boards. Dell's boards are made by Foxconn, and this company is used by most of the OEM's. The design ("architecture of the board" is solely Dell's, and what components, quality, power limits and who builds the board, are their decision as well, and cost is big factor in this design.) Putting a Real power supply in this machine will probably cause the premature failure of the chemical caps, even if the power supply could fit properly, which it can't, and was Platinum Rated for efficiency of voltage delivery, and was so efficient its fan never is needed to turn on and cool it or was one of the digital varieties which is big bucks, so to be accurate, the machine as a whole is the limit and it was designed to be at that limit. You get what you pay for....
Some truth here, some misinformation.
Systems like this are designed to be exactly what the consumer demands they will be: as cheap as possible. Dell specifies a price they'll pay to have the system built, and the ODM (Foxconn, Pegatron, Wistron, etc.) design and build to that price. Yep - you'll find electrolytic caps in "name brand" systems - but not in retail mainboards any longer, because the latter cater to the enthusiast market, which is far more demanding. Retail desktops are designed to last the length of the warranty - they're not built for the long haul.
Not all of Dell's boards come from Foxconn. If Pegatron can build it cheaper, they get the contract.
Power supplies put out only as much power as the board demands - there's never a problem putting a higher-wattage power supply in, any more than there's a problem with using high-octane gas in a cheap Toyota Yaris. Doing the reverse - a cheap power supply even in a system with a good, all solid state cap board - or using low octane gas in a Maserati - is an invitation to problems.
The last statement is the essence of it - you do indeed get what you pay for. You can't begin to assembly a computer yourself out of decent parts for anywhere near what these computing appliances sell for -- for a very good reason.