Scratch Build: The Ultimate Computer Desk

Discussion in 'Overclocking, Benching & Modding' started by ultimatedesk, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. procupine14

    procupine14 Why is it Beeping!?!?!

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    This is just an amazing/interesting endeavour. Believe it or not, the thought has crossed my mind a few times to do something similar to this before. However, mine was more along the lines of fitting my HTPC into my entertainment center.
     
  2. gaetan

    gaetan Active Member

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    Didn't reply to your last update? how strange lol

    Anyway, still looking great, and I don't get tired of telling it

    Love the front panel, really looks nice :)
     
  3. ultimatedesk

    ultimatedesk New Member

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    Thanks procupine14 - I've had a few requests to do similar, even a computer in a coffee table! It's a fun time!

    Hehe, things have been a little hectic lately - changed the front panel too!

    I guess it's been a while eh!

    Well, you'll be glad to know, that I'm actually almost done. There've been a few changes to the original plan, etc, etc, but I've still been goign full steam ahead, just not a lot of time to post updates lately.

    Here you go, some photo bombardment!

    First off, my awful cutting job. Notice how the masking tape ripped off some of the polyurethane? Looks pretty great eh.. (NOT!)

    [​IMG]

    Fitting my original faceplate design

    [​IMG]

    I thought it didn't look too bad, but the USB ports were difficult to secure, and there were no audio jacks, so I went about and redesigned a new face plate

    [​IMG]

    Did some work with the band saw, scroll saw, and some sanding, and voila!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Looks not terrible eh? That's a nice unit from Silverstone that I picked up from my local computer store. Everything fits real nice and tight

    [​IMG]

    Holes for the power switch and LEDs look good

    [​IMG]

    And a quick test fit

    [​IMG]

    Wonderful! I cut the hole for the card reader / usb with a jigsaw, but neglected to take photos...

    Anyways - after a couple coats of black spray paint, I think it looks pretty cool.

    [​IMG]

    With the faceplate out of the way, and hopefully, the last of the drilling / sawing / making sawdust portion over, for the right-hand cabinet, it meant I had the all clear to install more hardware.

    Here are the two hard-drive trays with the actual HDD trays removed.

    [​IMG]

    Gave them a nice coat of black spray paint and they mounted them inside the cabinet. I think they look pretty groovy.

    [​IMG]

    Even groovier loaded up with hard drives.. (Two missing in this pic, 7TB total, however!)

    [​IMG]


    Now, before we get to the next pic... another boon happened recently - traded some of those Core 2 Duo systems + some cash and picked up a really cool previous generation Core i5!

    Here's the power supply - a Corsair 650TX, a very quality unit. All that could be better is some modular action. Ah well!

    [​IMG]

    And another beautiful Gigabyte motherboard - a GA-P55-USB3 with 4 GB of G.Skill RAM

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here's the sweet mother. A quad core 2.8Ghz. Wow, talk about moving on up the CPU chain!

    [​IMG]

    I picked up an older version of the Coolermaster Hyper 212 (Not the Plus version) and mounted a pair of Scythe fans to it

    [​IMG]

    Oooh, it's getting so close to boot time!

    [​IMG]
     
  4. kris23

    kris23 Going Insane.....

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    eagerly awaiting the next update
     
  5. sahara_mafia

    sahara_mafia member

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    nice stuff bro looking nice too and where did the server board go

    but i would like it with water cooling
     
  6. gaetan

    gaetan Active Member

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    :w00t: Awesomeness is awesome :w00t:

    Just a couple of questions:
    1. It looks like the black front plate is integrated into the desk, is it? or is it just 'stuck' on the outside?
    2. About the PSU, is there anything other than the four screws supporting it?

    Just curious :)

    Also, is it me or is the coolermaster cooler close to obstructing the side closure?

    Still doing great, can't wait for the first boot to be announced :w00t:
     
  7. ultimatedesk

    ultimatedesk New Member

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    Thanks kris23!

    Server board wasn't ideal for this project... will be using it for another one in the short future! Water cooling... is still an idea...

    Thanks gaetan - the front plate is just stuck on front. In fact, at the moment, nothing is holding it on except for the tight fit of the optical drive and card reader. The PSU only has 4 screws supporting it. And yes.. to the coolermaster cooler thing, as you'll see below ;)

    Wow, with all those SATA cables there, it sure messes things up, no?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I went ahead and threw in my current video card (Radeon HD5770, which kicks some pretty decent butt still). I'm sure I'll see an improvement from my P4 3.2!!!

    [​IMG]

    And here's the magical moment. It looks like it's already been tweaked around a bit. Running at 3.2Ghz instead of 2.8Ghz, RAM speed up to 1600Mhz... Hey - nice temps! That's only a few degrees over ambient! (It's chilly in the basement)

    [​IMG]

    Only one major problem with this setup... Can you see what it might be? (Well, ok, there's more than one thing not "ideal")

    [​IMG]

    That might cause an issue. I also don't like the way the heatsink exhausts all of its hot air directly onto the back of the video card, so off to the local computer shop!

    This should do the trick:

    [​IMG]

    Much better. Fits almost like it was meant to be.

    [​IMG]

    Looks real good there actually. I think the wide fin spacing will be an advantage as well, since there is going to be a lot of general air flow throughout the cabinet.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. gaetan

    gaetan Active Member

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    That was a fast update, I'm sure you're as eager to see it completed as we are lol

    The wait is killing me, can't wait to see the 'apprentice' become the 'master'... make it 'grand master' :w00t:
     
  9. sahara_mafia

    sahara_mafia member

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    truely awesome The wait is killing me tooooooooooooooo

    if i were somewhere near u i would hijack that desk

    but some 4 clips on the board to hold the sata / power cables

    then it will look
    legen wait for it dary
     
  10. BulletTheory

    BulletTheory Forgiveness is a Six Gun

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    Wow man. I must bow to you, you did a really great job on this build. Impressive!

    Keep up the great work!
     
  11. MIG-31

    MIG-31 HardwareHeaven News Mod Staff Member

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    I take my hat of to you,I have seen the progress you made earlier with the external design of the DVD and power point part of the mod...

    I like the after effect... I think the Black surround works very well.
     
  12. ultimatedesk

    ultimatedesk New Member

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    lol, grand master. Yes - I am ultra eager to get it completed. There are so many small, custom parts that take time to either ship or make, it becomes quite trying on patience!

    Ha, awe....some! Cables have been cleaned up in this update! lol hijacking it would be quite the venture!

    Thanks BulletTheory!!

    Thanks MIG-31 - the new surround is much better than the old one, but to be honest, I am a bit iffy on it. It just doesn't feel as though it meshes with the rest of the project that well. We will have to wait and see. It is not currently fastened, so no big deal to remove and replace, fortunately.

    So, now that the hardware has been installed, I can proceed to managing those cables a little. I first cut a quick piece out of 1/4" hardboard with a few strategic holes

    [​IMG]

    Already much more to my liking. Time to place the new fans with their new mounting system

    [​IMG]

    Ok - with both "plates" in place, I can cut the appropriate holes in the door and go ahead and install!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Woohoo, that blue furnace filter sure looks out of place eh? Everything fits, it's nice, snug, and square, so I went ahead and added a bunch of closed cell foam

    [​IMG]

    Another view of the almost finished right-hand cabinet old i5 system

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    *Testing*

    I've been using this cabinet setup for a little while now, and I'm happy to report that the temperatures are really quite nice. Because I've "sealed" the air intake portion, all of the intake air is coming through the blue furnace filter. You can literally feel suction if you place your hand in front of the filter. There is a massive amount of air coming out of the CPU hole, as well as the open PCI slots, power supply exhaust, and the half inch of space between the door and the "non-intake-area". (You can see in the previous photos, I did not put foam around the entire door perimeter).

    So far it has been idling at ambient (23-25) and at maximum, just under 50 degrees Celcius.

    I can hear the fans running - they are louder than all of the hard drives spinning up. I am going to get a small fan controller and get them down to the minimum speed while maintaining these current temperatures (There is a very large amount of air running through the case).

    *To Do*

    I have clearly got to find something to either replace the blue furnace filter, or cover it up with something a little more visually appealing.

    Also, I need something to cover the CPU exhaust area. It will need to match whatever I do for the furnace filter area.

    'Til next time!
     
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  13. mcdragon2

    mcdragon2 New Member

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    Maybe some speaker grill cloth. it would atleast make it black but it will also act as a filter so it will become dusty
     
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  14. sahara_mafia

    sahara_mafia member

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    grill would nice on the air vents

    and where u can slide a filter on it which collects dust
     
  15. gaetan

    gaetan Active Member

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    :drool:

    I'm just speechless, this is just... I don't know any word that can describe the awesomeness of this project!

    You seem to have good temperatures, although keep in mind I have no real idea what a 'good temperature' really is :D

    The ideas proposed for the side I've read so far look interesting, so in the end I think it's up to you to see what you deem the best.

    Next time? It's still continuing? That's awesome!
    I wish you could do these continuously, I'd tune in every time :w00t:

    Can't wait for next time :w00t:
     
  16. Takaharu

    Takaharu Unus offa, unus iuguolo

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    +1 for the speaker dust covers. If you find a set of tower speakers that match (or are close to) the colour of the desk, all the better.

    It's looking really good. I'm a little surprised that you went for an 1156 series though. What made you go down that route? Also, what OS are you using on that system?
     
  17. ultimatedesk

    ultimatedesk New Member

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    That's a good idea - I am currently keeping my eyes open for a better grill / filter material

    A slide-on option would certainly be nice!

    Heh, thanks Gaetan - yes - there is plenty more to come... and I think there will certainly need to do more projects after this as well!

    Thanks Takaharu - as for the 1156 - don't you worry... that's my "server" system, after all, which is still way overkill for what it's original intended purpose was!! I'm using Windows 7 currently.


    On the other end of the desk, things have been progressing along nicely as well - had this beauty cut for me

    [​IMG]

    Placing it in the hole, it sits just a little bit too large. The original square I cut out was about a millimetre smaller on one end than the other

    [​IMG]

    So I took out the trusty chisel and did a bit of shaving!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There we go!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Mm, starting to look so awesome!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The foam fan-holder will have to say bye-bye on this side, just like the one in the right-hand cabinet. Doesn't quite look right.
     
  18. Takaharu

    Takaharu Unus offa, unus iuguolo

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    Looking really swish there. I'm looking forward to seeing the cable tidying.

    There's still no visible air intake!
     
  19. sahara_mafia

    sahara_mafia member

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    nice i am very waiting for the complete thing
     
  20. gaetan

    gaetan Active Member

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    :drool::drool::drool::drool::drool::drool::drool::drool:

    :w00t::w00t::w00t::w00t::w00t::w00t::w00t::w00t:

    Awesomeness is awesome *PERIOD*

    :D
     

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