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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Final Pics here.
Warning: There's over 2MB of photos on that page, so the 56k warning applies heavily.


Well, I sold my old rig, so time to start on the new one. This time, I decided to do a case mod straight up.
Parts list is in signature.

For this one, I decided on a Red/Black theme (with input from a few members, and some friends).

Planned mods:
Side panel window in the Mini P180
Change out all system LEDs to red ones
Sleeve all cables with MDPC-X kit
Paint the fans
Make custom ATX cable bracket
Custom light the interior
Various other paint jobs

So, on to work! (That would sound so much better in my head if I hadn't already started)

Update log:
#1: Unboxing, setup
#2: Cutting the side window
#3: Modding the Xiggy
#4: F***ing up the panel
#5: Re-lighting the power supply
#6: Front Panel
#7: Some cable sleeving
#8: Mounted in the chassis
#9: Various small stuff
#10: PSU Intake Mod
#11: The DVD Mod
#12: Cable management and the side panel
#14: Finishing the side panel
#15: Epic final pictures post
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Everything's here:


Assembling the Xiggy:


Artsy shot (totally not intentional):


Heatsink on:


Assembled:


After this it took me about 3 days of hassle to get windows installed. Turns out iso I used had errors. Borrowed a Windows disc from work, and it installed fine.

Unfortunately, I still have problems, and the board might have to go back
 

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That board looks dam sexy! Nice components etc
BTW you put the wrong board in your sig


Unfortunate about the RMA though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm using a dremel with a multipurpose cutting attachment for this part, then a jigsaw to widen the hole that's cut in the plastic, so I can fit the acrylic in.

Taped and marked up:


First pilot hole (point of no return):


Prerequisite dog:


And the hole cut:


Brodie337 approves!


Edit:

Quote:

Originally Posted by oliverw92 View Post
BTW you put the wrong board in your sig

I did too, thanks for that. Fixed.
 

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Thanks for the entry...

Computer parts turn me on... I'm a recovering technophiliac.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I decided that the stock white LEDs the Dark Knight came with weren't to my liking, so I decided to swap them out. Unfortunately, the 3mm LEDs I bought from DSE were nowhere near bright enough, so I ordered some more from China.
They came in a pack with a bunch of 550R resistors for adapting direct to 12V.
The new ones aren't as bright as I would've liked, but I've grown used to them, and decided that low-key is better in this case.

The first problem I ran into was that the white LEDs took 3V, and the red ones take 2V. The problem here is that I had no resistors (save the ones that were sent with the red LEDs) With a big of playing around with a multimeter, I realised the Dark Knights hub was actually supplying 12V, so crisis averted.

First photo, halfway through:


It was around this point that I plugged it in to test, then without looking (and absent-mindedly) I went to shift the fan (running at full speed, btw)...
*THWACK* "OW F***!"

(I just realised this camera has a shockingly focused flash. I WILL endeavor to fix that somehow)

And a finished night shot:


That blue in the background is the lights in the Antec power supply, and its current status is: Warranty void.
I will be changing the lights in it, but not while it's running...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ruckol1 View Post
Your so lucky you can wear shorts right now!
When I snapped that photo, the air conditioning was on, it was so hot outside.

Unfortunately, it's been raining for 4 days straight now, and as I type this at the breakfast table (in boxers) it's about 10 celcius in the house. I'm driving down to the coast tonight for new years though, so hopefully it'll be warmer down there.
If it's too cold, no skiing

So no updates for at least a week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Back from the coast, so more work to do.

No modding updates just yet, but I have been playing with the overclock, and one of my feeler runs got to 4.4GHz
Sitting pretty on 4.0 now, and going to concentrate on getting temps as low as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The shape of the windows turned out exactly how I wanted, unfortunately it went downhill from there.
To soundproof the panel, Antec sandwich a layer of plastic between two layers of aluminium, secured with these MASSIVE sheets of really strong double-sided tape.
The internal alu panel I just ripped off with pliers and threw away, because you can't see it. The outer panel is the presentation panel however, so i had to get it off much more gently.

The "Orange Power" goo remover I was using to separate the layers (shown below) must have had a small amount of something corrosive in it, because it's discoloured the plastic. It's the same sort of effect you get when you use superglue on black plastic, the surface seems to aerate and go a lighter shade.

The layers. The silver edge is the alu, the thicker black edge is the plastic:

Don't worry, that edge is going to be covered.

The discolouration:

Kind of hard to see because the camera's not really good.
Unfortunately, I have no idea how to fix this... Anyone got any suggestions?
Things I've tried:
Swabbing with metho (on an unseen piece). Makes it worse.
Polishing wheel. Nothing.
Rubbing with wet rag.
Rubbing with dry rag.

Actually, I just had an idea. Anyone thing tyre blackener would work?

I also cut the plastic layer back another ~15mm to allow for the perspex panel:

You can also see the remnants of a sheet of double-sided tape. I think I'll just get a sheet of metal painted black to cover this side.

I have the edging ready to go on, but this part is now on hold until the rest of the system is together.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
This was one of the hardest things to do so far.
The Antec TruePower 750 comes with blue lights built in, which are obviously not going to fit with the theme. So they had to come out.

The problem is where they are mounted:


There is really not a lot of room to work in there.
The first idea I had was to pull the whole board out, de-solder the leads where they came through the backside, and solder in my own pre-wired LEDs.

Unfortunately, I didn't count on it being so crowded in these supplies:

If you can find the LED legs, you're doing better than I am


So I relegated myself to the fact I'd have to do it the hard way, and went about clipping off the blue LEDs as high as I could, then using a stand to hold the new ones in place while I soldered them:


Soldered and sleeved:


And a blurry (no tripod on hand) no-flash shot to show you what it looks like:


I promise the final pictures will be much nicer. We have an EOS 500D at work I can borrow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Nothing is being left untouched! So, on to work.

I then went ahead and cut the old AC'97 connector off the FPA connector, and sleeved all the other connectors.
The USB headers gave me a problem, because they are the type where there are 2 connectors in a 1x5 grid, rather than some other cases, which are a single 2x5 connector.
I ended up sleeving the cables individually, then superglueing the connectors together, then heatshrinking over the end of the cable. Sorry, I didn't get a photo of this. If someone wants one, I'll take one.

The stock front panel has a *********** LED and a blue HDD LED.
I'm not planning on changing anything but the LEDs here, because I quite like the way the panel looks anyway.

Here is the LED configuration:


I ripped the guts out of the back of it, snipped off the old LEDs and set to work.
For this, I couldn't decide on how bright I wanted the front panel lights to be. Originally, I bought a 50 pack of red ones from DSE, but they turned out to be ****. I then ordered another 50 brighter ones from overseas on ebay, and they're much better. (They're the ones that went into the Xiggy).

(L-R) DSE brand, ebay ones, and the 5mm ones that went into the PSU:


I eventually decided on using the bright ones, as the front door will usually be shut, and they probably won't annoy me at night.

Attaching the first leg:


And then soldering the other. I'm not the best at this, but thought the job was neat enough:


It works!


The old ones (5mm) were mounted in little plastic pieces that directed the light toward the front. Because the new ones were smaller, I had to hot-glue them in place, them secure the pieces back in, like so:


Here they are about to go back onto the front panel:


And a shot of all the sleeved wires:


My desk was an absolute mess during this:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by wheth4400 View Post
Looks great so far, and I must say I love the PSU that is amazing! Keep up the great work and am looking fowards to seeing more.
Thanks for the kind words.
I'm halfway through sleeving the power supply cables as we speak. It turned out to be a much bigger job than I thought. So there's work to do yet on the power supply.
 
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