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Case Mod - In Progress Project: Endorphin (Update 23/01)

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by DAE_JA_VOO, 29 Jan 2007.

  1. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Endorphin

    I'm sorry but i just can't hold it in anymore. I just HAVE to tell you guys because i'm very very excited!

    My First Project - Epiphany - is almost finished. I'm taking the PSU to be tested on saturday and if it tests out ok, Epiphany will be finished VERY soon, in which case i'll be starting my next mod(s)

    The next mod will be called Endorphin and will consist of two mods.

    The case will be an AOpen EY65 case:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here's a few plans that i have already:
    • Most of the hardware will be watercooled. The CPU, GPU, and Chipset will all be watercooled.. I have already obtained all the relevant blocks and the pump, i'm just waiting to get a radiator, which i should be getting within the next few days.
    • The entire front Fascia will be removed and i'll make a new one. The new one will be about simplicity, somthing like what you'd expect from an ANTEC case, like the front of the SOLO.
    • There will be a VFD/LCD display in the front as well
    • The case will also obviously be getting a new paint job, colour is still undecided but i think i'm gonna go for a nice black colour, or perhaps a dark grey. I'll see :p
    Now here's the part where this mod will differ slightly from other mods. For a number of reasons, this case will have NO optical drive inside the case. Mainly because this case is TINY and i have to fit a pump in here, but also because i hardly ever use an optical drive. So i have a plan that will allow me to use an optical drive with this machine anyway, and this plan is what the second mod is about:


    Second Part of Endorphin

    I need an external optical drive, but there's no way in HELL i'm gonna pay over 1K for one, so i'll MAKE one, but one with FAR more functionality than a regular external optical drive. This one will include a few added features.

    I'm going to build an external enclosure that will house a DVD writer, two hard disks for extra storage (a 160GB and a 120GB), a memory card reader, a 120mm fan to cool the HDDs, and a USB hub. The Optical drive, card reader, USB hub, and HDDs will all eventually run from the enclosure through a SINGLE USB cable to the PC.

    Now i need to explain in more detail how i plan on doing all of this. The optical drive and the two hard disks will be connected to a USB hub inside (lets call this HUB1) the enclosure via IDE to USB adapters. The Card reader and external USB hub (we'll call it HUB 2) will ALSO be connected to this internal USB hub. This internal hub will be what connects to the PC. So if you plug in this USB hub, you'll connect the Optical drive, both HDDs, the card reader, and the external USB hub to the PC.

    So, now you're probably wondering how i plan on powering all of this huh? Well, i managed to get my hands on a pretty small 350W PSU. This PSU will probably come out of it's housing and i'll put the bare, to preserve space. This PSU will power everything in the enclosure - the DVD RW, both HDDs, the 120mm fan, and the USB hubs (yes, i'm gonna buy USB hubs that need 5V so that they can power hungry devices like my portable 20GB laptop HDD). This PSU will get power from a regular power cable.

    Here's a diagram to help explain:

    [​IMG]

    This enclosure will also have 2 LCD displays in front to display the temps of the two HDDs.

    I'm thinking that i might add individual switches to all the devices within the enclosure so that i can power up only the ones i want to use.

    Now the case mod and this external enclosure mod will run hand in hand, but the external enclosure wont necessarily always be in use, and i can plug it into another PC if need be.

    So that's what i've been planning for about 2 months now. I've been so frikken excited and i just need to share my excitement :D

    I proceeded to contact a few online stores here in SA and ask for a sponsor.

    Sponsor(s):

    Early stages:

    Okay, i have secured and confirmed my sponsor. Before i elaborate, let me tell you how this happened. The night i started this thread i sent emails to about 10 local online stores and told them about my upcoming project and asked for sponsorships for components, I expected no replies. Those emails were sent out at about 1am. At about 8:15am i got my first reply. That reply was from an online store called IceVision. Visit them Here.

    Mario from IceVision Agreed to hook me up with a 250GB SATA2 Hard disk, an LG DVD-RW, a 120mm fan, and some RAM. He agreed to send me 512MB of Twinmos DDR400, and then a set of Corsair TwinX XMS low latency 512MB sticks of DDR400 at a later stage when he gets stock. That was really great of him, i was ecstatic.

    Main Sponsor: Prophecy

    Please visit the Prophecy Shop HERE

    Please visit the Prophecy Forum HERE

    A little while later, i got an email from Henk (Firestar) from Prophecy. From the start, Henk was very amped to be a sponsor for this mod. In his very first email, he agreed to give me everything i asked him for (which was a CRAPLOAD of stuff). At this point i decided to break the sponsor with the guys over at IceVision and let Prophecy be my one and only sponsor.

    After a few emails, we agreed on the following goodies:

    1: A SATA2 Hard disk. I'm not 100% sure, but by the looks of things, it'll be a 250GB. See it at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    2: Three Vantec Nexstar 3 External Hard Disk Enclosures. See the enclosures at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    3: RAM. I'm not 100% sure. See, Henk said he'd send me Team Xtreem DDR500, but the only Team Xtreem DDR500 i see on the Prophecy shop is "Team Xtreem Overclocking DDR 500MHz - 2GB (2x1GB Dual Channel)". I really hope this is what he's talking about. See it at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    4: A Liteon DVD-RW (The LITEONĀ® 16X DVD+R, 4X DVD+/-R DL to be specific). See it at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    5: Two D-link DUB-H7 7port USB 2.0 hubs. See them at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    6: An Antec Tricool 120mm Fan. See it at the Prophecy shop over HERE

    As you can see, this is a pretty large amount of goodies, and i can't express how happy i am regarding this sponsor. Henk, Thanks again man! :D

    Okay, so let me explain what i need all of this stuff for:

    1: The HDD. This HDD will go into the actual PC case. The HDD i have in there now is an IDE disk which will look HORRIBLE and potentially ruin this mod. I have other hard disks that will go in the external enclosure.

    2: The three Vantec Enclosures. The enclosures will be pulled apart for the guts. I need the PCB that's inside them that converts IDE to USB. The three PCBs from the three enclosures will be used for the two HDDs and the Liteon DVD-RW that's going into the enclosure.

    3: RAM. Well this will obviously go into the machine. At the moment all i have for this machine is 512MB of DDR400, which is a bit meager, as this machine will end up running Windows Vista.

    4: The DVD-RW. The DVD Writer will be going into the external enclosure.

    5: Two D-Link hubs. This is a cool part :D Both hubs will be going into the external enclosure, however, one will be internal, and the other will be external, but not completely external. Let me explain. The one hub will be available from the outside of the enclosure, just 7 ports for any devices or whatever. The second hub will be inside, and the two HDDs, the DVD-RW, the external hub, and the card reader (oh crap i still need to source one of those) will all be connected to it. The internal hub will then have it's cable running out of the enclosure to whichever PC i connect it to.

    6: The Antec Tricool fan: Man i love Tricool fans. I have 4 of them in epiphany, great fans these. This one will be in the enclosure to cool the two HDDs.

    So that's what all these goodies are for. I really can't wait to get started with this project. All that's holding me back is that i'm waiting for the arrival of the stuff that Prophecy is giving me and i just need to finish Epiphany. Epiphany should be done within the next week or so, at which time i can commence this mod. By the way, Prophecy played a significant role in Epiphany too ;)

    Again, let me thank everyone over at Prophecy for this sponsor. You have no idea how much i appreciate it!

    Just let me point out that, as far as i know, nobody has ever been sponsored for Case modding in SA. Overseas, guys are getting sponsored left right and center, but not here. It seems that Prophecy has really got an interest in the SA enthusiast PC market and they're really trying to get modding in SA to a better standard. I'm most certainly not saying that they'll sponsor every second Joe, hell, maybe i'm the only person they'll ever sponsor, maybe i'm the first of MANY, but i'm sure that many more companies will follow in Prophecy's tracks and start making an effort to make modding a big thing in this country.

    Guys, i'm telling you, one of these days, modding in SA is going to explode and we're gonna see some FANTASTIC stuff coming from the local guys.

    Thanks again to Prophecy, you guys are awesome!
     
    Last edited: 23 Jan 2008
  2. itsjustacompaq

    itsjustacompaq Minimodder

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    congratulations dude. how many mods have you done before this one? i would like to see some sketchups of the design. there is a lot you can do with an sff.
     
  3. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Hey man :)

    I've only done one mod, i've been working on it for the last year, i'm almost done. I should be finishing it thins week.

    I dont have any sketchups of what i wanna do with this mod, i have all the plans in my head, sketchup is just gonna waste my time. ;)
     
  4. JAxen

    JAxen What's a Dremel?

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    Sweeet! I love dem SFF modz :rock:






    :eyebrow:
     
  5. Bluefan

    Bluefan test 123

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    Connecting the harddisk via USB? That isn't that fast....
    How about serial ata? that's also possible external, but a lot faster.
     
  6. Jipa

    Jipa Avoiding the "I guess.." since 2004

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    Woah that's maybe the longest openingpost for a project log ever. As every other project, I'll also keep my eye on this. SFFs are always interesting because of the obvious restrictions in space..
     
  7. ottzen

    ottzen What's a Dremel?

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    Must say that I'm quite keen on seeing this project getting started, but one thing is kind of bugging me.
    Why would you choose "Genocide" as the name for such a nice and thought out mod? Especially seeing you're from Africa..
    Not that it's irritating me that much, just curious..some people might find it offensive, just to highten your awareness ;)

    Nevertheless:
    Let's get it started! =)

    //ottzen
     
  8. Duste

    Duste Sierra my delta, bravo!

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    That is possibly one of THE sexiest SFF cubes I have EVER seen. I'm actually going to try and get a hold of one of them. :D
     
  9. JazX101

    JazX101 What's a Dremel?

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    Looks to be a very interesting idea, and definatly worth watching.
    Not meaning to rain on your parade already, The ammount of bandwidth availalable over a single USB (i'm assuming 2) cable will mean that if you use a few of you're features to their maximum then you will end up with a bit of a slowdown, which could result in mishaps if it happens badly.
    If you were to include multiple USB cables inside a single outer cable, either as single cables inside an outer sheath, or a cusom cable that included power?? Shouldnt be too difficult, and easy enough to shield the data cables from any noise created by the power cable.
    Just an idea, but interestign project by the start of it.
    Best of luck
    Jaz_knos
     
  10. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Then watch this one ;)


    Yes, i know, but the HDDs will only be for backup purposes and random storage. I won't be booting an OS off there or anything ;)


    No, that would mean that from the enclosure, i'll have two SATA cables and a USB cable, and that every PC i want to use the enclosure with must support TWO eSata ports.


    lol, well actually, while i was driving one day i heard some or other news report about Genocide, and i thought the word itself sounds very cool, so i chose it right there and then :p


    Very true, however, as i have stated above, the HDDs will be for back up purposes, and i hardly ever use an optical drive anyway.

    Update time.

    Another Sponsor

    IceVision

    Some interesting news for you guys. As soon as i accepted Prophecy's sponsor, i emailed the guys over at Icevision, who also offered to sponsor me. I was afraid that they would be a bit hacked off at me about choosing Prophecy over them, but on the contrary, they congratulated me and were very amped about my sponsor with Prophecy. They told me that they had already ordered the HDD and and the fan, and that they are gonna send it to me anyway. lol. That's really great of them! :D

    So, everyone, please do me (and yourself) a favour and pay IceVision a visit. These guys are also a great store and have a nice selection. Big Ups to IceVision, they're also very keen on getting modding in SA to a standard that is actually RELEVANT in the world. Thanks IceVision!

    Anyway, yesterday morning i got home and saw this in my room:

    [​IMG]


    Hey hey hey!!! Some new toys! I opened up the box:

    [​IMG]


    Okay, so what did i pull out? First off:

    An Antec Tricool fan:

    [​IMG]


    Aaag, i hate these frikken 3 colour fans, but i LOVE Tricool fans, so i'll just get rid of the LEDs.

    Next, my D-Link 7 port USB hub:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Prophecy was meant to send me two of these babies, but they didn't have stock and will send me the other one as soon as they get stock.

    My new Liteon DVD Writer:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Some fantastic new Team Xtreem RAM. Two gigs of high performance goodness:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I have yet to test this RAM. When i get a chance i'll put it in and run some benchies for you guys. Unfortunately i wont get anything mad as this IS only a P4. Before i finish building Epiphany i'll put this RAM in there and bench it :D

    A Seagate 160GB SATA2 Hard disk:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Compared to a regular HDD, it's WAY thinner, which i thought was fantastic considering this will go into a SFF case:

    [​IMG]


    Last, but not least, some Vantec Nexstar 3 external hard disk enclosures:

    [​IMG]


    No no, not only one, but THREE:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Here they are next to the one i had before this mod as well as my 2.5" one for my notebook HDD:

    [​IMG]


    IceVison are sending me a 250GB Seagate SATA2 hard disk, so i'll be pairing up the 160GB and the 250GB inside the SFF case, and in the external enclosure, i'll put a 160GB and a 120GB (the 120GB was given to me as well :p )

    With regard to what monitor this machine will eventually get when it's done, it will be getting the 17" LCD screen i originally modded for Epiphany. Remember that mod? If not, read it here:

    17" LCD Screen Mod

    But then what screen is Epiphany gonna be using? Hehehehe... Epiphany will be using a BenQ 22" LCD, which i'll be getting today. The 22" BenQ will be modded to fit in with Epiphany, and the 17" LCD will be RE modded to fit in with Genocide.

    So, there you go. Let me know what you guys think of my plans, and thoughts so far. :D

    God Bless

    Ettienne
     
  11. Duste

    Duste Sierra my delta, bravo!

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    Why not just use the 22' for Genocide? :|
     
  12. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Because Genocide is my spare PC. Epiphany is my main rig.
     
  13. Jipa

    Jipa Avoiding the "I guess.." since 2004

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    Nice job with the TransTFT :) I've planned to install a LCD to my custom-foot too.
     
    Last edited: 31 Jan 2007
  14. kylelnsn

    kylelnsn What's a Dremel?

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    Sweet, uber cool!
     
  15. Evenge

    Evenge Minimodder

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    Looks nice! Keep up the good work! :thumb:
     
  16. Kipman725

    Kipman725 When did I get a custom title!?!

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    weird Im listening to a song called Genocide at the moment. It's awssome :D
    http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Garden/dp/B0000074PT

    sorry to burst your bubble abit but connection one HD over USB nevermind 2 and an optical drive is painfully slow. A better idea (athough much higher in cost) is to use a very small computer like that new VIA board that was on bit a while ago. Install one of the many linux nas distros on it and hook it upto your pc with gb networking.

    The very best solution would be to use SCSI cards as a short range networking solution, this is acumplished by some serious hackery though and would not be worth it unless you are the type of person with alot of time who loves tweeking.

    Although you may think that usb will be good enough as your only using it for backup... I'm not so sure I get annoyed with the bandwidth restrictions of 100mbs ethernet here nevermind usb which tops out at about 45mbs if you have a chipset with a good implementation (definatly not garunteed with SFF pcs).

    anyway good luck, I suppose you can always build an upgraded version later :p
     
  17. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Thanks for all your comments guys! :D

    Yeah i know exactly how slow it is. It's fast enough for me though. I mean, i can even play CS: S off an external HDD, stream music, movies, anything, which is all i need. ;)

    Just got some stuff from the guys over at IceVision

    Looky:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    A 250GB Seagate SATA2 HDD, a 120mm fan, and 512mb of Twinmos RAM:

    [​IMG]


    I told Mario from IceVision that Prophecy had already sent me RAM, GOOD RAM, but Mario sent me some RAM anyway. lol, i have no idea what i'm gonna do with it:

    [​IMG]


    My nice new Seagate:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    IceVision, thank you so much!! I really appreciate it :D

    The 250GB from IceVision and the 160GB from Prophecy will go into the PC itself. The 160GB for the OS and the 250GB for storage.

    I'm gonna drop Systems104 an email and see if they can hook me up with an LCD or VFD. I have bought from them before, so maybe they'll hook me up :p
     
  18. DAE_JA_VOO

    DAE_JA_VOO What's a Dremel?

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    Okay, after seeing the amazing work one of my buddies did in Sketch-Up, i decided to give it a go and learn how to use Sketch-Up. It's pretty easy, i must say. Anyway, here's some of the planning for the inside of the external enclosure. Please excuse the low quality of the models, i had to create each and every single one of those models myself (except the fan) just to make sure that my dimensions, etc etc etc are all good :)

    I have yet to plan the actual look of the enclosure, all i've done is plan the inside, which is also not complete. This is just a rough draft. Click the links under the images for some 1680x1050, uncropped High res goodness.

    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    [​IMG]
    Click here for 1680x1050, Uncropped


    More to come...
     
  19. n0d4x

    n0d4x What's a Dremel?

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    NICE!

    keep up the good work man
     
  20. Duste

    Duste Sierra my delta, bravo!

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    Eh, I'm confused...where will the actual hardware go? As in motherboard, etc...?
     
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