How to connect front panel cables to mainboard?

This post is lesson 11 of 42 in the subject Computer Hardware

Have you ever wondered that when pressing the power button on the Desktop, where does the signal go? The answer is that the power signal will be transmitted to the mainboard through a type of cable called Front Panel cable. Let’s find out!

1. Front Panel cables

– Location: located on the inside front of the case.

– Function: connect the power button, reset button, hard drive light, power light to the mainboard.

– There are 4 types of Front Panel cables: Power Switch, Reset Switch, HDD Led, Power Led.

Front panel cables

– Front Panel cables

  • HDD Led: signal cable for hard drive light
  • Power Led: signal cable for mainboard power light
  • Power Switch: signal cable to connect the power button
  • Reset Switch: signal cable to connect reset button
HDD led, power led, reset switch and power switch cables

2. Front Panel pins on mainboard

Where do the front panel cables plug into the mainboard? Answer: front panel pins on mainboard.

– Front Panel pins on the mainboard include 9 pins, usually denoted FP, FP_1, F_PANEL, JFP.

– At the foot of the front panel pins, there are symbols such as +MSG-, +HD-, +PW-, -RES+, NC (No Connection) or +PWR_LED-, +HDD_LED-, PWR_SW, RESET.

Symbols at the foot of front panel pins

3. How to connect front panel cables to mainboard?

Pin 1, 3 plugs into HDD Led, pins 2, 4 plugs into Power Led, pins 5, 7 plugs into Reset Switch, pin 6, 8 plugs into Power Switch.

How to connect front panel cables to mainboard? 

Notes when plugging the Front Panel cables into the Front Panel pins

  • You must plug the correct + and – pins for led cables (hdd led, power led). The + pin of the signal cable is usually a pin with a prominent color such as green, red, etc.
  • Reset Switch and Power Switch cables do not need to pay attention to the + and – pins, just need to be mounted in the correct location on the Front Panel.
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Posted by Vinh Le

Composer at ITLearningCorner.

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