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 Post subject: A Dell to be...
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:11 am 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:51 am
Posts: 171
Location: Wandering amidst the stars...
So, currently I've got a Dell Dimension 4600 PC that I'm working on modifying.

Parts I have:

Dell Dimension 4600 case
Dell Inspiron 620 motherboard
Intel i3-3230 (or is it the i5? Either way...)
8GB Crucial Ballistix Sport RAM, Very Low Profile variant.
Unbranded test PSU, 450W
Corsair flash drive, 8GB—has Xubuntu as test OS

Why a Dimension 4600? Because that's what I've got on hand. I'll take pictures when I can but for now, I've been doing loads of research. The only stumbling block that I can foresee is the one that has to do with the Dimension 4600's faceplate. What I'm concerned about is more or less keeping the look of the Dell Dimension 4600. There's three problems with this idea.

1. Fan intake. There's a front fan intake area in the front of the case but the Dell Dimension 4600 faceplate has no real usable intake flows aside from the three slots beneath the light-grey/whitish plate.
2. Power switch needs to be modified for the Dell Inspiron 620 motherboard.
3. Front I/O plate needs to be replaced with one that works with the Inspiron 620 mobo.

I'd be interested in knowing what specific material and colors were used to make the faceplate and other plastic parts of the case. That said, I know I'll need to get a new power switch for a Dell Inspiron 620 motherboard, along with the appropriate front I/O stuff, such as USB, audio. From there, the tentative idea is to either:

1. Cut the faceplate and adapt accordingly.
2. Totally make a completely new faceplate, comprised of some form of metal with a mesh area for the fan. Not entirely certain how I'd do this, though. I'm thinking this may just have to be the best way forward given the need to cut into the steel frame of the 4600 case to make the modifications work.

For now, the plan's currently getting the back I/O plate for the motherboard, the power switch and the front I/O stuff. From there, I'll be able to start showing you guys the mods I plan on doing to the poor Dell Dimension 4600 case. And eventually, a fully modular or semi-modular power supply to keep wiring down to a minimum and provide maximum air-flow.

This should be an interesting mod, as it's been a while since I decided to mod a case.

Suggestions? Comments? Questions?


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 Post subject: Re: A Dell to be...
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 5:29 am 
Team Member
Team Member

Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 12:09 pm
Posts: 568
Great idea. I guess you will be doing this on a budget? If you want some ideas, I have been going through the old mods done over on overclock.net and there are some that mod the Dell (or similar Dell). I will see if I can find them for you.

About the front panel, I am in a similar boat. A mod I have been doing involves removing the OEM front panel because it sticks out an inch and interferes with my added front intake. My plan is to pick up acrylic sheet from Home depot and install it over the front with machine screws. There will be a 120mm hole for intake with some large hole mesh (for protection of wandering fingers). I estimate that it will cost me $15-$20 for parts and tools to do that.

Anyway, you say you want to keep the original plate, so can we get some shots of that panel taken off the machine? You might be able to cut a hole on the black plastic and leave the gray upper plastic intact.

EDIT: Actually, this is what I was thinking of: http://www.overclock.net/t/762847/plann ... ase-mod/30


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 Post subject: Re: A Dell to be...
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 5:37 am 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:51 am
Posts: 171
Location: Wandering amidst the stars...
phillyj wrote:
Great idea. I guess you will be doing this on a budget? If you want some ideas, I have been going through the old mods done over on overclock.net and there are some that mod the Dell (or similar Dell). I will see if I can find them for you.

About the front panel, I am in a similar boat. A mod I have been doing involves removing the OEM front panel because it sticks out an inch and interferes with my added front intake. My plan is to pick up acrylic sheet from Home depot and install it over the front with machine screws. There will be a 120mm hole for intake with some large hole mesh (for protection of wandering fingers). I estimate that it will cost me $15-$20 for parts and tools to do that.

Anyway, you say you want to keep the original plate, so can we get some shots of that panel taken off the machine? You might be able to cut a hole on the black plastic and leave the gray upper plastic intact.


Somewhat of a budget, yeah. At least, for the time being. Mostly right now though, I'm focused on acquiring the parts I need to make the mods happen. That means all the necessary stuff to make the mobo function properly. Fortunately, I didn't have to do anything crazy with the motherboard standoffs in the case. It lined up pretty much perfectly for my motherboard.

As far as keeping the original plate— not necessarily. I could keep it and modify it. But if I did, I'd have to figure out how to work with the aesthetics of the case, as it were.

I'm thinking along similar lines as to your comment on picking up acrylic sheet. I may have to go with a colored acrylic sheet. Black and maybe frosted white or grey if I can find 'em. To the Google™! That said, acrylic or some form of metal. The only potential issue is needing to figure out how to handle the tabs that holds the faceplate in. Maybe I should forego the tabs and make it pop-rivet or screwable to make it easier for me to remove the faceplate in future. Which means at some point I should find a Dell logo or get a machined Dell logo, something like that and a nice LED switch for it. I'll have to see if I can't yoink the power button off the faceplate. I have to admit I do like that thing.

As for the pic of the faceplate and all, I'll get to doing that ASAP.


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