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Discussion Starter · #1 ·


The Beginning
After building and upgrading computers for a matter of years for friends and family, I finally decided to sit down and create one for myself. Inspired by the vast amount of stunning PC builds scattered throughout the inter webs, I was excited to build something new and different - something to be proud of. From custom cases to custom loops and lots of inventive details, designs began to flood into my mind.

It was time to build.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The Parts
Ebay has been a great friend to me - cheap components everywhere. I was lucky to receive all parts in good working order. Not a super powered workstation, but it's enough to get the job done.

Motherboard: ASUS Z87 WS
Processor: Intel i5 - 4690k
Memory: Corsair LP 1600mHz
Power Supply: Seasonic X-850
GPU: EVGA 980 SC
Boot Drive: PNY Optima 120GB SSD
Storage: WD Black 1TB HDD



The Plan
Craft a high-quality system unique to myself...By myself. No all-in-one coolers here. Modded parts, custom cabling, custom cooling - the whole shebang. Having unrestricted access to a 3D Printer and laser cutter means more details and never-before-seen ideas are free to come alive.
This will be one for the ages.


LET'S GET STARTEd
 

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It will be interesting to see what you come up with using a 3D printer. I used mine quite a bit for the Dark Side Case mod. If you ever have any questions that are 3D print related in always available. I have to check up on this build often.
 

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Update #1: And So It Begins
Sat down today to begin making some ideas come to life. Bear with me as my CAD skills leave much to desire, but sketch-up is fairly easy an quick to use. These are just preliminary and will likely change again and again. The external size is pretty much cut into stone (600mm x 500mm x 250mm), but the internal layout could change at any instant. Would love to hear any feedback or ideas!





Just a quick concept side panel and 3D Printed Logo



As you can see, I'm quite partial to a black with gold accents color scheme. It's something that I feel looks clean and isn't terribly overused.

Again, any feedback would be appreciated; this is as much a community driven project as it is a self driven project!

 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update #2: Components and Test Build
Parts are in!



Managed to grab the bequiet! Dark Rock 3 for a great price. Stock coolers are
thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif
, so I'll use this in the meantime. Thumbs up for a quality foreground!
thumb.gif


Test build on the motherboard box (WARNING: HORRIBLE CELL PHONE PICTURES INBOUND).




Test benches = dust buildup. Not good! Also Xbox HDDVD Player for an optical drive... I feel like I should be shunned
redface.gif
.

ASUS's BIOS Flashback turned out to be a lifesaver in this build. As Z87 is an ancient relic at this point, the WS board did not support the Haswell refresh processor out of the box. 30 minutes, some internet browsing, and a USB drive later, no problems whatsoever, and the 4690k is now cruising at 4.5 GHz with no issue. I'm sure I can push it further, but I will wait until it is 20,000 leagues under the sea.

The GTX 980 Overclocked like a champ, hitting 1500mHz without touching the voltage.

I've begun work on the frame of the case and will post pictures soon!
 

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Sweet!! You can use xbox 360 optical drives on a pc? Is there any required modifications or is it pretty much plug and play?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Quote:
Sweet!! You can use xbox 360 optical drives on a pc? Is there any required modifications or is it pretty much plug and play?
So far it has worked perfectly without any extra attention. Simply plugged it in and installed windows from a disk. It's read everything I've thrown into it, but I'm not sure if the HDDVD function still works on a PC. I'm sure glad it did; I didn't order an optical drive ($20 saved is $20 extra for something cooler!
biggrin.gif
)
 

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That's great news. I have probably 3 or so xbox 360 optical drives that I've been holding on to. A while back I remember looking it up and some guys said it wouldn't work so I'm glad to hear that it has. I like the xbox drives better than most other pc optical drives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Update #3: The Case Begins
Began working on the case late last week. Working a little bit every day has yielded a depressingly small amount of finished work; Progress is still progress, though. Basic design constitutes an aluminum frame with acrylic panels and, eventually, aluminum sheets for some (hopefully) clean and elegant design.

I found some aluminum!!!

Cutting.....

And bending....

And bending some more!

Making the frame....

And epoxy-ing (definitely a word
thumb.gif
) Sooo many clamps!

My three best friends for this project!

Frame is finished and stored away to cure for many an hour.

Lastly, a giant piece of polycarbonate
biggrin.gif
!


Hope this was at least a mildly interesting update. Next step is cutting the acrylic and mounting it to the frame. It's actually starting to look like a case!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Update #4: The Shell
Had a busy week but still got in some work, so here is a small update on how the build is progressing.
  • Cut the acrylic pieces (Plus lunch).
  • Squaring and finishing all the edges.
  • The inner panels mounted on the frame. Besides a mid-plate and other aesthetic plates, this is what will be the inside. The top and front will be a single aluminum sheet. Haven't decided on the side panels yet.
  • 3D Printed Elephant
    biggrin.gif

  • Some quick front panel styles. Would love to hear what you all think!



Thanks for checking out the log again, there are plenty more updates to come!
 
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