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Advice for building inside a wooden desk

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Hello chaps!

Backstory
I live in London, UK, and housing is outrageously expensive here. As a result, I live in a small flat (apartment). I have a desk which lives in the living room, since there's nowhere else for it (and me!) to go. Because it's in the living room, and we're meant to be grown up now, it looks like grown up furniture.

This is what it looks like -

Cables are neater now. Promise. Also there's a matching screen on top of the left hand drawer.

For work I use a rMBP, and very nice it is too. However from time to time, I like to game, mainly CS:GO and whatever is the new hotness, which is also available on OS X. This is a work PC, and it's not possible to run Bootcamp on it for gaming. Trust me here.

So, I've been thinking how much I'd like to sort out a little gaming PC, and started casting about for anything that would fit on the desk in terms of size and style. I've come up with nothing that suits, so I'm now contemplating the feasibility of cramming something into one of those little drawers on the desk.

There is a budget, but its not fantasy budget. We're talking GTX 970/960 mini is realistic, R9 nano is not. I haven't put a figure on it, since I don't 100% know, but we're talking 3 figures UK, not 4. However, I think that physics may be a larger constraint than finances.

The "Plan"
This will be 90% for gaming, and 10% some photo work (Lightroom with 12MB RAW files), or CV writing if I lose my job wink.gif

As such, I do not need any spinning media. I'll be happy with 1 M2 drive, this is on a wired network, so no wireless required.

This is my "case"

width:248mm (9.76")
depth(top):198mm (7.8")
depth(bottom):220mm (8.66")
height:82mm (3.23")

What I need to figure out myself
Airflow (how much do I have to discretely hack up my beautiful desk?) and cables (power/network/USB/headphones - where do they go and how do they get there)

What I would love help figuring out
What can I fit in there? Mobo? CPU? Graphics? Cooling? PSU? M2? How would it fit together? Do flexible risers work ok?

RF interference - how big of a deal is it, and if I want to minimise it, any great ideas on how to do so?

What am I missing? How dumb am I? Should I just buy a PS4?

Addendum
I have access to a 3D printer and a laser cutter, so could in theory fabricate things which are way beyond my skill level wink.gif

Thanks for reading!
post #2 of 3
Do you have any room on the underside of the desk to fit anything? There is enough room in there for the board, but the height will probably be an issue with the video card and possibly with the PSU depending on how much you need. A motherboard and the rest would be no problem. Getting a substantial GPU + CPU in there will either need a couple of loud fans or many quieter fans to get the air flowing through there properly.

Another option would be to mount a shelf above the desk and use some sort of conduit or giant monitor to hide the cables. I know some people are super obsessive about cables, so that may not be an option. I have used the sticky pads from 3M Command strips to mount things to walls without damaging them with great success. You could honestly buy a case you like and stick it dead on the wall behind your monitors with those things.
post #3 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiokuro View Post

Hello chaps!

Backstory
I live in London, UK, and housing is outrageously expensive here. As a result, I live in a small flat (apartment). I have a desk which lives in the living room, since there's nowhere else for it (and me!) to go. Because it's in the living room, and we're meant to be grown up now, it looks like grown up furniture.

This is what it looks like -

Cables are neater now. Promise. Also there's a matching screen on top of the left hand drawer.

For work I use a rMBP, and very nice it is too. However from time to time, I like to game, mainly CS:GO and whatever is the new hotness, which is also available on OS X. This is a work PC, and it's not possible to run Bootcamp on it for gaming. Trust me here.

So, I've been thinking how much I'd like to sort out a little gaming PC, and started casting about for anything that would fit on the desk in terms of size and style. I've come up with nothing that suits, so I'm now contemplating the feasibility of cramming something into one of those little drawers on the desk.

There is a budget, but its not fantasy budget. We're talking GTX 970/960 mini is realistic, R9 nano is not. I haven't put a figure on it, since I don't 100% know, but we're talking 3 figures UK, not 4. However, I think that physics may be a larger constraint than finances.

The "Plan"

I'd check the computer room/office and case mod forums also, plenty of desk builds for ideas
This will be 90% for gaming, and 10% some photo work (Lightroom with 12MB RAW files), or CV writing if I lose my job wink.gif

As such, I do not need any spinning media. I'll be happy with 1 M2 drive, this is on a wired network, so no wireless required.

This is my "case"

width:248mm (9.76")
depth(top):198mm (7.8")
depth(bottom):220mm (8.66")
height:82mm (3.23")

What I need to figure out myself
Airflow (how much do I have to discretely hack up my beautiful desk?) and cables (power/network/USB/headphones - where do they go and how do they get there)

What I would love help figuring out
What can I fit in there? Mobo? CPU? Graphics? Cooling? PSU? M2? How would it fit together? Do flexible risers work ok?

RF interference - how big of a deal is it, and if I want to minimise it, any great ideas on how to do so?

What am I missing? How dumb am I? Should I just buy a PS4?

Addendum
I have access to a 3D printer and a laser cutter, so could in theory fabricate things which are way beyond my skill level wink.gif

Thanks for reading!
NFC S4 Transplant
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3770K P8Z77-I DELUXE EVGA GTX 750 Ti Intel(R) HD Graphics 4000 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveCooling
G Skill Ripjaws 1600Mhz 2x8GB Samsung 840 Pro 256GB Win 10 Samsung 840 Pro 256GB Linux Mint 17 Noctua L9i 
OSOSMonitorKeyboard
Win 10 Pro Linux Mint 17 HP Envy 32" Bang & Olufsen SIIG Mech 
PowerCaseMouse
Dell 330W brick plus HD Plex 160/200W NFC S4 Logitech M310 
  hide details  
Reply
NFC S4 Transplant
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Intel Core i7 3770K P8Z77-I DELUXE EVGA GTX 750 Ti Intel(R) HD Graphics 4000 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveCooling
G Skill Ripjaws 1600Mhz 2x8GB Samsung 840 Pro 256GB Win 10 Samsung 840 Pro 256GB Linux Mint 17 Noctua L9i 
OSOSMonitorKeyboard
Win 10 Pro Linux Mint 17 HP Envy 32" Bang & Olufsen SIIG Mech 
PowerCaseMouse
Dell 330W brick plus HD Plex 160/200W NFC S4 Logitech M310 
  hide details  
Reply
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