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Mainboard maker ABIT Computer, who was among the first mainboard manufacturers to acknowledge there were problems with capacitors on certain of its products and implement more robust components, faced a class-action lawsuit from one or a group of its clients seeking for repair of mainboards acquired as long as up to six years ago.

ABIT Sued for Capacitors

“The Class Representative alleges in this Action that ABIT Computer (USA) Corporation (“ABIT”) manufactured, marketed, and sold select models of its motherboards containing an allegedly defective component, namely, a capacitor, which was allegedly prone to failure. ABIT has denied and continues to deny these allegations and has asserted a number of affirmative defenses,” states lawsuit which copy was published by PCStats.com web-site.

“You are a member of the proposed Settlement class (the “Class”), if you are within the United States and you purchased one of the following specified Abit Motherboard models during the period January 1, 1999 to the present: BE6, BE6II, BF6, BX-133, KA7, KA7-100, SE6, VH6, VH6II, VH6T, VP6, KT7-RAID, KT7A, KT7A-RAID, VL6, VT6X4, SA6R and BX133-RAID. However, the Settlement Class shall not include any persons or entities purchasing ABIT Motherboards for resale purposes,” states lawsuit filled by plaintiff Eric Schonning.

None of the mentioned mainboards are produced or sold today.

The Court will hold a Fairness Hearing at the Rene C. Davidson Alameda County Courthouse 1225 Fallon Street, Oakland, California at 11AM on June 1, 2005 to determine whether the settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate and should be finally approved.

Defendant ABIT could not be reached at press time. Plaintiff Eric Schonning provided no details on how to contact him on his web-site Abitsettlement.com. It is unclear how many people have already joined the class-action law-suit.

Leaking and Exploding Capacitors – Industry-Wide Issue

Leaking, exploding and deforming capacitors on conventional mainboards is an issue that has been around for years. However, in the last 12 to 48 months the problem has become pretty big as modern chips consume a lot of energy and the risk of capacitors’ failure became extremely serious.

A number of companies, namely ABIT, ASUS and MSI, recently engaged plethora of measures to avoid problems with capacitors by utilizing only quality components and perform exhaustive testing before mainboard go into mass-production. ABIT has been supplying mainboards with revamped power-circuitry since 2002 calling this technology BulletProof, while ASUS opted to use expensive capacitors on its latest mainboards for Intel and AMD processors after discovering certain issues with previous product lineup. MSI recently said its mainboards had passed rigorous T?V Saarland torture tests.

In mid-2004 a suit against Microstar International was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court by Electronic Connection Services Corporation that accused MSI of knowingly using capacitors, devices used to regulate the power supply to microchips, that can leak or even explode and cause mainboards to short-circuit. The suit, which seeks to cover any person or company in the United States who has made a wholesale or retail purchase of an MSI mainboard since 1999, seeks unspecified damages and restitution and other relief. Additionally, the suit put doubts on MSI’s ability to ship durable mainboards.

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