I've seen stuff all over the internet with people having the same problem I had with their 700s; I turned on my computer one day only to be greeted with an amber power light, and had to conclude that there was something wrong with the motherboard. I saw that you could buy refurbished motherboards from Dell for a ridiculous price, and I also found XPS barebones kits on sites like ebay, also for kind of a ridiculous price. So I did the only sane thing I could think of: I gutted my case, put in a new back panel and motherboard tray, and dropped in an ATX motherboard and a new PSU. So far, everything is excellent, but there are still a few minor things about the case that I would love to get working again.
First, the lights. Can anybody tell me how they're controlled? Judging by the connectors alone, I would assume that you just run power to different combinations of wires to get different combinations of colors, but what voltage? And if that's the case, could I use PWM to get more colors than the few standard combinations? If I can figure this out, I would love to build a USB board to control my case lights.
Next, fans. The XPS case fans have four connectors, which you see in CPU fans pretty often now. I know a lot of four-pin fans can be used on three-pin motherboard connectors; you just won't get the speed data that's usually sent over the fourth pin. Do the XPS fans work like this? If they do, which wire does what?
Last, and most importantly, the front panel. I would very much like my power button and LEDs to work, but I need to figure out which pins of the ribbon cable connect to what. The sound ports should still work, because I'm using the same soundcard, and I think the USB and Firewire ports should work if I get the right connectors, but it would be very nice not to have to take off the side panel to turn the computer on.
If anybody can help me out with this, I would really appreciate it.