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[Build Log] CaseLabs M8 Refurbishment: X99 Deluxe, 5930K, 2x980GTX, Aquaero 6, Solid Acrylic Custom Loop - Page 7

post #61 of 80
Thread Starter 
Fans (part VII) - Final Installation

Finally I have completed the huge majority of the work with the fans! I have just one cable left to make when I put everything under water

The case is now sporting all 14 of the B12-3 fans that the final build will use, all of the fan splitters are also located into their final positions, and all of the cabling is routed as it will in the final build (subject to any future changes that come from something I didn't think of for some reason doh.gif) Overall I think it looks pretty neat, the cabling and splitters are mostly hidden away, and everything being black means it blends/stealths in nicely with the case.

Here are some shots of the final sets of fans being cabled and installed....


Like every cable in the build - I sleeved the extensions from the fans to the splitters using the same method - soldered crimp connectors, and super glue and heatshrink to hold things in place - these cables are therefore pretty "robust" and if something goes wrong (incorrect wiring, wrong length) then I end up making a new cable as its virtually impossible to "unpick" once glued - luckily it only happened a couple of times!


Every fan gets its manufacturer sticker replaced with a black carbon fibre effect sticker


Next I bunch up the fans into groups and connect them to the splitters, I use some cable guides to hold things in place, but the fan cables are made to be within 5-10mm of the exact length anyway, so there is only a little bit of play in them - This set was destined for the top of the motherboard compartment


This is the motherboard top fans installed (next to the aquaero) - its a little hard to see but you can see the splitter top left in this image. From the side of the case this is near enough completley hidden as it is behind the fans.


The Splitter for the PSU side fans is hidden in the top of the case but unfortunately due to the space in the M8 they have to be mounted vertically rather than horizontally, so they are a little more visible - For this shot I removed one of the PSU side top fans


A closer view of the wiring (again with one of the top fans removed)


The side fans for the PSU side got built up on their frame...


This was then installed in the case


The front fans close up view


Front aspect view of the case - I may consider seeing if I can fit in a third fan at the front on the PSU side - but I seem to recall on the last build having issues because the side mount interferes a little with the space there


I also did all the work needed to get the setup controlled in aquasuite - I am now moving onto installing some lighting for the motherboard compartment
post #62 of 80
Thread Starter 
Main LED lighting
I have a big update to this log today with lots of pictures covering all the work I have done on the LED lighting system for the Motherboard compartment in the last few weeks.

In my previous build LED lighting was a definite "after thought", and I ended up removing it because it didn't look great. I had decided that this time around I would build in a higher quality lighting system based around fabwerks right from the start of the design. I really wanted to make a diffuse (but bright) light inside the case and to help achieve that I bought some 12mm micro channel with a "diffuser screen" from a household LED lighting supplier in the UK - the micro channel itself has been shown already in this build log when I painted a number of parts black previously.

My intention was to take these micro channels and diffusers and turn them into four "light bars" to mount top, bottom and sides inside the motherboard compartment of the caselabs case.


To make the LED light bars I started out with some cables, black LED strip from aquacomputer, and the various painted parts including the micro channel and meccano parts I made previously


Black L-brackets


Flat brackets


End plates / stops for the micro channel


I took the light strip and cut it into sections to fit each light bar individually - You have to make cuts along the pre-marked lines


Once cut I removed the resin coating on one set of terminals with a craft knife and tinned the connectors with solder


The standard aquacomputer cables have this big-ass white connector that would never fit in the micro-channel (and besides its white!)


The connector gets removed and the cable gets stripped back - The individual wires are stripped and tinned with solder


In one case, with the longest cable run, I had to splice two cables together, these were joined with solder joints and then heatshrunk to stop shorting - I reapplied small sections of the shroud where the individual wires are showing in this image and then covered the whole thing with a thin piece of electrical tape - its not perfectly smooth, but was good enough to sleeve.


Each cable is sleeved and heatshrink applied at both ends


One of the short cables made up smile.gif



For each micro channel I put in some countersunk screws and attached the various brackets I needed to fix these into the caces
Then I worked the LED strip itself into the very bottom of the micro channel using the end of a skewer (being careful not to damage paint)
before the final few inches are worked into place I solder on the sleeved cable and check connections with a multi-meter (funnily enough the final one I didn't check as I got complacent, and lo and behold that was the one that didn't work first time due to a short, luckily I was able to fix it and no damage was done!)


The end result in the channel before the screen is added - this cable is the one that was spliced, you may be able to make out the fatter section (starting about 3-4 inches from the channel)

At this stage I tested all of the bars in the case to check for problems - more on that later...


To finish off I add the diffuser screen and heatshrinkthe whole thing to ensure the exit of the cable is nicely made and that some sort of strain relief is there


I also add the painted endcaps


To attach them into the case they are attached to the case end using some black M3 bolts and the painted meccano brackets


The cables get loosely routed into the fabwerk

A long while ago I got asked what the difference was with and without diffusers - and I mentioned a bit earlier that I fitted all the light bars at the halfway stage to see if they worked and iron out any issues - that also enabled me to answer the question below.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdmR View Post

I'd really like to see the difference with the diffusers for the leds.


Canon 50D - f4.0 @ 0.5 sec
This image above shows the case lit up with LED's with NO diffuser installed


Canon 50D - f4.0 @ 0.25 sec
This image above shows the case lit up with LED's with the diffusers in place

A couple of observations to help give some context - Both shots are taken from approximately the same location (on the subwoofer under my desk) - However they are taken 1 week apart. They were both taken late morning with the curtains and blinds closed in the room so the lighting is similar (but admittedly not exactly the same). I have processed thees images in lightroom to try and make them as similar as possible whilst preserving the overall details needed to compare

In these images the aquaero itself is set at an RGB ratio of 100:50:18 - The shot with no diffusers is at 25% brightness with the diffusers the shot is 50% brightness

The diffuser itself does absorb a little light / make the light a little dimmer, which was expected if I am honest.

However what is striking from these images is the vast improvement in quality/uniformity of light. I must admit to the naked eye it was not this striking in person, but bear in mind to go from no diffusers to the diffusers being on took a couple of hours. I definitely did notice some colour hues without the diffusers in place (especially the greens near the AIO radiator at the back) but I didn't feel it was quite as "hippy trip kaleidoscopic" as theses images make out. It is especially interesting to see the light bleed from the back of the case, its almost like the light there is from a diffraction grating in the non-diffuser image.

I feel pretty content that my investment in the micro channel and diffusers was worthwhile seeing these images
Edited by alstorm - 4/27/16 at 4:24am
post #63 of 80
Amazing wheee.gif
post #64 of 80
So correct me if i'm wrong, trying to wrap my head around this, your self-made power board supplies power to your 6 power adjuststs, but where does the board itself gets its power from and what are the multiple 3 pin connectors on the board used for.
post #65 of 80
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by willemdoom View Post

So correct me if i'm wrong, trying to wrap my head around this, your self-made power board supplies power to your 6 power adjuststs,

that is correct...... these six devices are what the grey/white rainbow shaped molex cable sets are for



Quote:
Originally Posted by willemdoom View Post

but where does the board itself gets its power from

It is hard to see but there are 8 molex connectors in total on this little board:
6 x poweradjust & fabwerk
1 x Aquaero 6 XT
1 x Power input from PSU

The power to the multiplex board is supplied by a 4 pin molex extension (black) - this is visible in the image above coming through the hole in the panel (and heading into the corner) - there is also a very small 4 pin jumper that goes from the multiplex board to the aquaero itself

The molex power connections are explained in more detail here

Quote:
Originally Posted by willemdoom View Post

and what are the multiple 3 pin connectors on the board used for.

The 3 pin connectors are an aquabus multiplexer circuit - I realise I could have used the multiple aquabus ports on each fabwerk and PA3, but this kept the cabling a little neater and means that all of these cables run approximately vertically. Bear in mind that both molex 4-pin power and aquabus are parallel buses.

These questions remind me that I never posted the circuit I drew up for the multiplexer board. You can find that below (apologies that it is very wide for mobile users) - if anyone really wants to see it in more detail I could potentially attach a PDF of the excel file or PM them the file.



I also made the following image - from one of the shots I took mid build - which hopefully explains the connections in a bit more detail


There is, I think, at least some method in my madness thumb.gif
Edited by alstorm - 6/26/16 at 8:21am
post #66 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by alstorm View Post


That image is incredibly helpfull, thank you thumb.gif
post #67 of 80
Thread Starter 
Progress on this build is still slow but at least it is inexorably moving forward towards completion - my target now is to get this done by the end of the summer thumb.gif I am also thinking of some upgrades on components (maybe GTX1080's) before I finally get everything under water.

I have been doing some sleeving to fit in with the whole "white carbon" theme, I hope to post an update soon with some more sleeving shots, but in the mean time I am trying to decide between four options for the 24 pin cable extension

1000
Option 1 Light grey/Dark grey central band


1000
Option 2 Dark grey/Light grey central band


1000
Option 3 Light grey central band


1000
Option 4 Light grey/White central band


I think I am slightly leaning to Option 1 or 4
Edited by alstorm - 6/26/16 at 3:03am
post #68 of 80
Option #2 for me smile.gif

-Jeffinslaw
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post #69 of 80
+ Rep for circuitry work and Your methods of Madness.

Excellent stuff.

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post #70 of 80
Very nice build sir ! Love your attention to details thumb.gif

I personally would choose option number 1 but change one of dark on the sides to light grey so that you have dark grey, light grey, white and leave the mid section as it is in option one wink.gif

Anyway looking forward to see this build finished smile.gif
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