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Case Mod - In Progress (Project Log): Epitome, BitFenix Prodigy/ATX build [Updated 8/8]

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by Fridge Gnome, 13 Jun 2013.

  1. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Not 100%, I haven't ordered the new cables yet, but I'm pretty sure they will work with the space I have.
     
  2. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    I'm not quite ready to post an update yet, but I thought I'd just leave this here.. ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    UPDATE TIME!

    First up, I did some work making the case a little more conducive to the way I was setting things up.

    Cut out the bottom of the case, to install a new flat base.

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    I've been spending the majority of my time grinding and shaping metal sheets to fit the case. It would have taken forever with a file.

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    I marked out and cut gabs for the tabs on the side plates of the case, so that they fit flush with the new bottom plate.

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    I also cut out sheets to cover up the sides of the case. For the inside I used metal, I'll likely use something else to cover the outside.

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    After extensive preliminary research and testing, I came to the conclusion that computers are kind of heavy, So I installed some braces to help support the motherboard.

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    And installed with the mobo tray...

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    It's actually starting to look like a computer case!

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    I forgot to cut slots for the graphics cards and I/O, so I burned through my last few rivets and took it apart, cut the holes, and reassembled.

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    Next, the waterblock that Bitspower gave me seems to be a newer version, which is great, except that it was frosted acrylic instead of clear. I found that it was incredibly easy to fix that with some polishing compound. Seriously, don't let these blocks being frosted ever hold you back, I was amazed how easy it was to clear them up.

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    This picture doesn't really do it justice, it's perfectly clear, just like my GPUs.

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    GPU mounts and RAM block installed.

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    My new PCI-E cables also arrived. I said that pictures of PCI-E cables would be too boring to post, but I feel like I need to get some return out of these things, they set me back $80 dollars!

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    However, they are really well made, and work perfectly for me.

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    Finally, I've also begun sleeving my PSU. Thanks again to Emil at DIY Modding for helping me with the sleeving, it's turning out great. Check out my review for it here

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    It was my first time sleeving, but I took the leap and did heatshrink-less sleeving. I found that it was surprisingly easy, and probably holds up better than normal heatshrink would have.

    Unfortunately, it's not all sunshine and roses here. After hooking together this mess, I found that I was unable to keep a connection between my monitor and GPU for more than a few seconds at a time. I'm still not 100% sure what the problem is, but I've narrowed it down to the soldering I did on the PSU to create 8 pin cables or an issue with the PCI-E extenders.

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    That's all for now. Things are starting to pickup, so hopefully you'll start to be able to see a real computer coming together soon.
     
  4. LegendaryScott

    LegendaryScott Trying to live up to the name

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    Nice progress, coming along nicely.

    GPU positioning looks awesome with the blocks et al fitted.

    80 dollars for extenders, whats that like 50 quid, thats steep bud.
     
  5. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    It hurts even more considering I can't get them to work. The PSU is working fine, so I know it's an issue with the extenders, I just have no idea what the issue is. There's hardly any information available on using them with high end cards, aside of mining with them.
     
  6. LegendaryScott

    LegendaryScott Trying to live up to the name

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    I got my pci e extender from ModDIY
    LINK

    I know its too long for your build but they are not that expensive, It would good though to test.
    My one def works but only with a single amd 7870.

    They also do powered versions LINK

    Hope you get it sorted soon
     
  7. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    I have the same pci-e as well. It was too big, so I never tested it.

    I'm going to set everything up on a bench tomorrow, then I'll know for sure what's wrong.
     
  8. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Little update, no pictures yet, mostly complaining.

    I got my last few watercooling part in recently, and after installing them all, I found that my motherboard was posting "FF". After I finally gave up on trying to fix it and pulled everything apart, I found that there was corrosion on one of my PCI-E slots. So... yea. I think I'm out a motherboard. None of my fittings were leaking, so I have no idea how water got on the motherboard, but I guess it's too late now. I'm not really sure how I'm going to pay for a motherboard right now. I was hoping to finish this project before school started, but that doesn't seem too likely either. Regardless, I'll try to keep things moving. I get acrylic in for the case Monday. I've got a neat little piece I'm going to be making out of that to show you guys.
     
  9. soxism

    soxism New Member

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    Bummer to hear about the Corrosion. As im sure you already thought about it.. Just thought id mention Can you possibly RMA? or from the mob you bought it from?

    Might save you having to buy a new board if you havent put any water though your machine yet.

    What the saving grace might be is the fact you can prove it wasnt your fault due to this blog?
     
  10. Zesti

    Zesti Aluminium + file

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    I had one exactly the same looking PCIe extender earlier. It worked just fine with HD7850 and then I switched to HD7970.. It was no-go - random crashes and bad results all around. I hope your problems originate from the motherboard and not from the extenders - GPU placement is looking awesome. :)
     
  11. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Unfortunately, Murphy's law is in full effect here...

    I purchased a new motherboard, Asus Crosshair V Formula, only to find that I'm unable to get it to boot more than once every dozen attempts. And once again I have no idea why. :wallbash:

    Furthermore, when I do get it to boot, it looks like my windows install has corrupted somehow.

    Fun stuff I tell ya.
     
  12. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    This project isn't dead yet!

    I've made a major breakthrough! :clap:
    I just got my ASUS motherboard back from it's RMA and after a little tweaking, everything, including my PCI-E extenders, are working perfectly!
    In the next few days I should be able to get started with the acylic work and have some eye candy to post up here within the week.

    I apologize for the delay, but setting up GPU's like this seems to be relatively uncharted territory and I had to do a little bit of stabbing in the dark to get it going.
     
  13. AlienwareAndy

    AlienwareAndy New Member

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    That's because high end cards pull too much power from the slot so you need one like this.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Well, turns out the motherboard still isn't working, so I'm going to try adding more power to the extenders and see if that helps. If not, I'm going to go with the normal straight graphics card setup. I'm still going to have some cool things, but I'm going to have to drop the 45 degree setup if more power doesn't help.
     
  15. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Alright, I've got some good news and some bad news.

    Bad news is I've tossed the 45 degree cards plan. Unfortunately I still just couldn't get them to play nice with my gpus. I'm definitely going to revisit the idea in a future build. Don't worry either, I've got a bunch of other cool features I'm working on for this project.

    Good new is, I'm making progress again, so no more boring text updates! I'm running my "old" motherboard, the MSI 990FXA-GD80V2, it's working beautifully and I'm running an FX 6100 cpu.

    So, on to the update...

    I finally broke down and bought a new PSU, Seasonic Platinum 860w. After staring at the tangled non-modular mess hanging off my old rosewill psu, I finally decided if I was going to this right I needed a good modular power supply.
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    Of course, this has left me scratching my head as to how to save all the sleeving I had already put on my old psu :confused: I'll likely have an order for DIY Modding soon though as I need more sleeving regardless.

    Next up, I purchased a new motherboard tray and I/O slots to accommodate the regular GPU setup. It's much sturdier than my original set up though.
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    I/O slots are a little messy I know, but I'll be cleaning everything up once I'm done cutting things up.

    So, that gets us roughly to the same stage as where I started running into PCI-E extender problems, but this time with all compatible and working parts :p


    Coming up next I'll begin working on the back side of the case, with the PSU, radiator, HDD, and pump mounts.
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Got a bunch of case work done. Pretty much finished with the basic metalwork now.

    I cut out two metal strips and then bent them to use as radiator mounts. Still need to do a little work to prettify them.

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    I kind of like the straight edge over the fans. I'm thinking I'll round out the top, but leave the straight edge over the fans. Any thoughts on this?

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    Mounts in the case with just barely enough room behind it for the radiator and fittings.

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    I also cut a hole for the PSU. I could have just put a slot for the plug itself, but I felt like I should give it all the airflow I can.

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    I made a standoff for the PSU. It made mounting it much easier, and it will let me dampen it.

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    After that I got everything back together for a few shots of the whole thing.

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    That's all for now. Things should start getting fun with the next update :)
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  17. saxovtsmike

    saxovtsmike Member

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    does the waterblock still fit ? Sad to see that the nice 45° layout didn´t work, but in the 90° layout I´d be afraid of not having enough place for the Waterblocks as these are higher than your normal slotcover. As you placed the the motherboard tray quite close to the end of the case I´d say there is not so much space in between the sidepanel of the case and the top of the pcie cover..
     
  18. C4B12

    C4B12 Minimalistic PC's

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    Oh I love this mod. Especially the angled gpus. :)
     
  19. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    I'm not exactly sure what you mean, but the GPUs should fit. The I/O slots are lower than they were with the 45 degree mounts, so I'll have more clearance on top. The waterblock will likely extend slightly outside the case, but I'll be modifying the side panel anyway, so I can easily accommodate that.


    :( unfortunately I wasn't able to get the angled GPUs to work. I'll likely revisit the idea in the future, but I've had to let that plan go for this project. Don't worry though. I've still got plenty of cool things coming!
     
  20. Fridge Gnome

    Fridge Gnome Blue Everywhere

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    Quick little post before I leave for Nebraska for Thanksgiving.

    Alongside the coming acrylic work, I have begun sleeving my PSU!

    [​IMG]

    Except only one wire so far, because I managed to cut my thumb and index finger open on the crimps by the time I got it on
     

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