Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Builds & Case Mods › Case Mods › Case Mod Work Logs › [Case Mod] Lazy Man's Power Mac G5 Mod (Lots of Pictures!)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

[Case Mod] Lazy Man's Power Mac G5 Mod (Lots of Pictures!)

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I know that G5 case mods aren't exactly a "new" concept. If you're looking for mind-blowing innovation, you might want to just stop reading right now. There's no denying that the G5 is sexy case. Several people on here have done some very nice mods and ended up with beautiful results. I am not these people. As an engineering student, I am very focused on problem solving and "efficiency" (which usually means LAZINESS). Because of this, I wanted to figure out the absolute LEAST amount of work I could do and still end up with what I wanted: taking my rig and effectively just copy/pasting it into a G5. I also wanted to maintain a pretty much stock look. This is still a slowly on-going project with a few nit picks that I need to take care of but I suppose my perpetual postponing of these final touches is in the spirit of the build after all... On to business!

Initial Test Fitting
The tear down process is pretty straightforward: just unscrew everything you can and pull it out. This has been documented before and I didn't really feel the need to. The first thing I did want to do was get a test fit and see how I could squeeze it all in. As you can see It barely fits in under the acrylic panel. Power for the graphics card would have to be routed or cut of course.



I/O Panel
In order to have this be usable I of course had to cut out the I/O panel. I only removed as much material as I had to while trying to keep a clean look.


Motherboard Standoffs
Next, I measured the spacing I would need for the standoffs by tracing the motherboard on a piece of paper and marking the holes. I punched the standoffs (re-used after I popped them off) through the paper and screwed them in to makes sure the spacing was correct. I based my final placement on lining up with the PCI slots and I/O panel. After I made sure the measurements were correct, I made a cardboard version to hold the standoffs in place as they dried. I used JB Weld to attach the standoffs back to the case. IMPORTANT: Be sure to score (scratch-up / groove) the standoffs and the case before you attempt this. If you try to attach a smooth surface to a smooth surface, you're gonna have a bad time (I had to re-do 3 of my standoffs). Standoff Images (Click to show)



PSU
While I was waiting for these to dry, I decided that I was going to take a spare PSU and do one of those sexy PSU mods, shoving it into the slim case that the stock G5 PSU comes in.
Stock PSU:
PSU Mod Images (Click to show)
Stock guts:

De-guts-ing my other PSU required cutting a notch out of it. (Probably not, but this was easier than figuring out how to do it properly):

The new, liberated guts:

Test fitting the new guts. I had an extender laying around which made figuring out how to get the power plug to the back a non-issue. I threw a few extra zip-ties on there to get it a little tidier. I probably could have arranged this better, but I was lazy and wanted to use the pre-existing holes in the bottom of the PSU shell.

Next, I had to cut the top panel of the PSU so I would have a place to put the modular connections.

It's not the prettiest job (especially screw holes) but hey, it works!

I had to notch out some of the top panel in order to fit all of the cables through:

First complete test fit:

Masking the hole for the fan:

Scored all the way around and started to cut through. This steel is hard on these discs!

Got some new fans to pop in there:

Did some cable management:

I Forgot to take a separate completed picture, but here is the modified PSU in the case. Barely fits rolleyes.gif


HDD Cage
Because the HDD cage was originally located in the top right of the case, I had to find somewhere else to mount it. I figured right under the DVD drive was as good a place as any. HDD Cage Images (Click to show)
There were some nubs on the corners of the cage, so I had to grind them off to get a flush mount to the bottom of the top separator.

I had to grind out a notch so the cage would fit flush against the separator and not hit the head of the screw holding the DVD drive latch together as these were just wide enough apart to not fit in between the ridges on the edge of the HDD cage.

I screwed the cage in from the top of the separator (had to drill holes) and this is what it looked like assembled. (I moved into the living room for the assembly because it was August and the garage was way too hot.)
Here's the cage attached and installed in the case. Just barely fit next to my GTX 275, which is lucky because I didn't measure! I had to drill a few holes in the front for the screws for the fans. They mostly lined up with pre-existing holes and the screws blend in pretty well.


First Test Run!
The fan controller is just kind of sitting there... We'll take care of that soon! I just wanted to make sure everything was working smile.gif IMPORTANT: This is when I figured out that the front bezel of the DVD drive has to be removed to fit through the slot. It should just pop off.

Booted into Windows (Yes, I use yearbooks as monitor risers.)


Fan Controller Mounting
I needed to find a place to put my fan controller, and since I couldn't put it in a 5.25" bay (since there aren't any), I had to improvise. Fan Controller Images (Click to show)
Masked and ready to cut! Note: this is for the outer dimension. I masked again for the inner dimension.

TADA!

I only cut as much as I had to in order to fit the board through. The acrylic is just a face plate.

Locking Mechanism
I think one of the really cool things about this case is how the side panel locks on (there's a lever in the back that operated the sliding lock). I absolutely had to keep this feature. I couldn't find a good image of how to re-assemble the locking mechanism when I did this mod in August, so I made sure to take good pictures of my own! Locking Mechanism Images (Click to show)
I had to cut the lock short (one fewer teeth) because of the new HDD cage location. Once again, it just barely fit without any measuring tongue.gif This image also shows that I cut away most of the top separator, but left the latch for the acrylic window if I wanted to use it. The lock is also part of the separator, but I cut the rest away so I wasn't smothering my graphics card and so I could run cables and whatnot uninhibited.



Second Test Run!
At this point I'm almost done with the project. I've put some effort into cable management and this is the first time I have all of my components installed properly. Of course, when I go to test it, the PSU has developed a short and all of my effort modding it goes down the drain (I shouldn't have opened it up again in the name of better airflow) and I have to use my other PSU. I also removed the honeycomb from what used to be the rear exhaust ports in order to help airflow. Second Test Run Images (Click to show)

All of the fan cables:


With the other PSU "installed":


The poor cable management makes me a sad panda:

The back:

PSU:

Round Two
After a long time of having to open the case to turn on the power (wiring harness for front panel is a long-term goal), I finally got tired of it when I installed two SSDs as the crazy short start-up time encouraged me to overclock biggrin.gif Because this is a somewhat temporary fix, I yanked the front panel controls out of an old case and zip-tied them to the back (this is the part of the computer closest to me when I sit at my desk). Nicely enough the acrylic has about the same dimensions as a PCI slot. Once again, without any measuring tongue.gif

I got a 2x 3.5" to 5.25" bay converter for my SSDs, and it fit very conveniently under the HDD cage. It had some nice zip-tie sized slots in the bottom, so I took advantage of this and just zip-tied it to the bottom.

The thick zip-tie you see is the one keeping the power in place. The one attaching the SSDs is the smaller one running flat against the HDD cage alongside the screws.

I had to do some re-organizing of my power cable(s) in order to power my new total of 5 drives. If you look closely, you'll notice the HDDs and SSDs are all powered off of one cable and that the bottom most SSD uses the first SATA plug in the series and the one above it uses the last. It's just what worked best. The zip-tie is there to hold them all together. There's also one tying the cable to the top hole on the bottom front intake fan, keeping it as neat as I reasonably can. I ran the other SATA power cable up the far side of the fans to power the DVD drive.


Cable management is a little better now down on the bottom:


Cable management is less than ideal up top, but I'm running power for the fan controller, DVD drive, and the two cables for the graphics card all through this tiny space. I also have the SATA for the DVD drive, the front-panel, and (indicated by the light blue in the middle) SATA for my two HDDs and two SSDs, so this jumbled mess is acceptable all things considered. The red/black twist is for my case speaker... which is currently sitting on top of my DVD drive... rolleyes.gif

My case as it exists now:


...so that's it for now!
I could use to manage some cables better, but I don't feel like taking everything completely apart at the moment to run things properly (under the motherboard). And it doesn't look too bad for a case that doesn't have a rear panel to hide things behind! Please let me know if there is a picture you would like me to take or if you have any suggestions for future modifications to the case.

My to-do list:
(not in any particular order)
• Find a better place for the speaker
• More under-motherboard cable management
• Wire up the ACTUAL front panel
• See if I can modify the acrylic panel to fit over everything now (helps to direct airflow to CPU cooler and separate from graphics card.)
• Maybe make some custom shroud(s) to help with PSU and CPU exhaust
• Find some way to get air to graphics card. (Maybe a duct from above DVD drive? Maybe an intake fan on the top of the case?)
• Mod the fans to have disable/enable for the LEDs

I hope you like my more bare-bones approach to the G5 mod! Thanks for coming by thumb.gif
post #2 of 5
Looks like a lot of extra space up top. I used it for the ugly stuff (DVD,HDD/SSD,PSU) and it's hidden behind my door. Why not put the PSU up there?

RPI Compy
(14 items)
 
Sister's rig
(11 items)
 
Family HTPC
(10 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
5820k MSI X99S MPOWER GTX 980 Ti 8x4gb 3000 MHz Crucial DDR4 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 950 Pro Custom WC loop 480mm & 560mm Windows 10 ROG SWIFT 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
CM Quickfire TK Greens Corsair RM1000w Custom 3d-printed case Steelseries Rival 
Mouse PadAudio
CSGO Steelseries Creative Aurvana Live! 2 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Amd FX 8320 Asus sabertooth 990FX Nvidia GTX 760 4GB g.skill ares 12GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB HP thingy Phanteks TC12DX Windows 7 
PowerCaseMouse
Raidmax 530w White FD R4 Logitech G400 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD A10 5800k Asrock pro-4 m His 6770 1GB G.skill 2133 8GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 ssd 128 GB Lg blu-ray combo drive Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Windows 7 
PowerCase
Raidmax 530w Silverstone Temjin 
  hide details  
Reply
RPI Compy
(14 items)
 
Sister's rig
(11 items)
 
Family HTPC
(10 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
5820k MSI X99S MPOWER GTX 980 Ti 8x4gb 3000 MHz Crucial DDR4 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 950 Pro Custom WC loop 480mm & 560mm Windows 10 ROG SWIFT 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
CM Quickfire TK Greens Corsair RM1000w Custom 3d-printed case Steelseries Rival 
Mouse PadAudio
CSGO Steelseries Creative Aurvana Live! 2 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Amd FX 8320 Asus sabertooth 990FX Nvidia GTX 760 4GB g.skill ares 12GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB HP thingy Phanteks TC12DX Windows 7 
PowerCaseMouse
Raidmax 530w White FD R4 Logitech G400 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD A10 5800k Asrock pro-4 m His 6770 1GB G.skill 2133 8GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 ssd 128 GB Lg blu-ray combo drive Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Windows 7 
PowerCase
Raidmax 530w Silverstone Temjin 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Legonut View Post

Looks like a lot of extra space up top. I used it for the ugly stuff (DVD,HDD/SSD,PSU) and it's hidden behind my door. Why not put the PSU up there?

The short answer is that there's not room.
I was planning on using the original PSU enclosure with the guts from a new PSU so this wouldn't have been an issue, but I shorted the PSU (somewhere) and had to use my other, normal one instead.

This is how it was planned to be.


Also, because I did not cut the entire thing apart to install an ATX tray, and instead just moved the stock standoffs, I am using the original PCI slots and am therefore stuck with the motherboard being located MUCH too high to fit a PSU above it. The location of your fourth PCI slot is the location of my first. (The last two images below are taken from your post: http://www.overclock.net/t/1287848/) Motherboard height Comparison (Click to show)



Edit: I appreciate the suggestion though! thumb.gif
post #4 of 5
I see. Well, good luck making it look pretty!
RPI Compy
(14 items)
 
Sister's rig
(11 items)
 
Family HTPC
(10 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
5820k MSI X99S MPOWER GTX 980 Ti 8x4gb 3000 MHz Crucial DDR4 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 950 Pro Custom WC loop 480mm & 560mm Windows 10 ROG SWIFT 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
CM Quickfire TK Greens Corsair RM1000w Custom 3d-printed case Steelseries Rival 
Mouse PadAudio
CSGO Steelseries Creative Aurvana Live! 2 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Amd FX 8320 Asus sabertooth 990FX Nvidia GTX 760 4GB g.skill ares 12GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB HP thingy Phanteks TC12DX Windows 7 
PowerCaseMouse
Raidmax 530w White FD R4 Logitech G400 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD A10 5800k Asrock pro-4 m His 6770 1GB G.skill 2133 8GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 ssd 128 GB Lg blu-ray combo drive Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Windows 7 
PowerCase
Raidmax 530w Silverstone Temjin 
  hide details  
Reply
RPI Compy
(14 items)
 
Sister's rig
(11 items)
 
Family HTPC
(10 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
5820k MSI X99S MPOWER GTX 980 Ti 8x4gb 3000 MHz Crucial DDR4 
Hard DriveCoolingOSMonitor
Samsung 950 Pro Custom WC loop 480mm & 560mm Windows 10 ROG SWIFT 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
CM Quickfire TK Greens Corsair RM1000w Custom 3d-printed case Steelseries Rival 
Mouse PadAudio
CSGO Steelseries Creative Aurvana Live! 2 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Amd FX 8320 Asus sabertooth 990FX Nvidia GTX 760 4GB g.skill ares 12GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB HP thingy Phanteks TC12DX Windows 7 
PowerCaseMouse
Raidmax 530w White FD R4 Logitech G400 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
AMD A10 5800k Asrock pro-4 m His 6770 1GB G.skill 2133 8GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 840 ssd 128 GB Lg blu-ray combo drive Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Windows 7 
PowerCase
Raidmax 530w Silverstone Temjin 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks! One of these days I may try to figure out what's wrong with the other PSU... But today is not that day!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Case Mod Work Logs
Overclock.net › Forums › Case Mods & Cases › Builds & Case Mods › Case Mods › Case Mod Work Logs › [Case Mod] Lazy Man's Power Mac G5 Mod (Lots of Pictures!)