case mods http://www.maximumpc.com/taxonomy/term/5032/ en Rig of the Month Roundup http://www.maximumpc.com/rig_month_roundup_2014 <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u154082/rig_of_the_month_toaster.jpg" alt="Weighted Companion Cube" title="Weighted Companion Cube" width="250" height="141" style="float: right;" /></p> <h3><span style="font-weight: normal;">We're looking for the coolest custom computer cases and we want your submissions!</span></h3> <p>We know you guys have got some interesting case mods out there and we want to see them! We're also sure lots of other readers would like to gawk and drool over them as well so let us help you share your cool <strong>custom computer case</strong> with the world!</p> <p>If you’re a case modder with something that deserves the Rig of the Month title, let us know by dropping us an email at&nbsp;<a title="maximum pc rig of the month email" href="mailto:mpcrigofthemonth@gmail.com" target="_blank">mpcrigofthemonth@gmail.com</a>. Make sure to include your name, a 300-word description of why your PC is amazing along with specs (and how it was modified), and no fewer than three high-resolution JPEGs of the build. Please try and use a high-quality camera with good lighting and make sure to bust out your photography skills! We will not accept any blurry, low-res camera-phone grade images because we'd like readers to see your awesome rig in the best light possible! Here are some specific case-shooting photography tips:&nbsp;</p> <ul> <li>Try to avoid using flash and opt for existing natural light. In addition, use things like white curtains to diffuse the bright sun.</li> <li>Make sure your case is in focus! Nothing ruins a picture of a nice-looking case than a blurry shot.</li> <li>Clean your case before you shoot it. No one wants to see all that nasty dust all over the place!</li> <li>Experimenting with shooting from multiple angles.</li> <li>Select the right backdrop. Your system could look cooler with a nice/clean background as opposed to on your messy floor with cables strewn about.&nbsp;</li> <li>When shooting, use a tripod or if you can’t get one, shoot from a stable surface such as a box or even a pillow.</li> <li>If your camera has exposure compensation, try playing around with under-exposing or over exposing until you get the effects you want.</li> </ul> <p>In addition to requiring pretty photos, we’ll be judging the rigs based on creativity and craftsmanship.</p> <p>To kick things off, we’ve gathered up some of our favorite Rig of the Month winners in the gallery below. Click the gallery image for the full shot and feel free to get more detail on each custom case by clicking on their individual respective links in the descriptions.&nbsp;</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/rig_month_roundup_2014#comments case mods chassis cool custom custom computer cases design interesting pc Rig of the Month rig of the month unique Tue, 30 Sep 2014 19:34:24 +0000 Ben Kim 27291 at http://www.maximumpc.com MyBadOmen's Mass Effect 3 Case Mod Will Rock Your Intergalactic Socks http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/mybadomens_mass_effect_3_case_mod_will_rock_your_intergalactic_socks <!--paging_filter--><p>Usually, just tossing around the words "Mass Effect 3 mod" is enough to get you banned from Origin's multiplayer servers before you can blink a Batarian's eyes. Not in this case; rather than whipping together some modified code to gain XP at an advanced rate, David Lane (a.k.a. MyBadOmen) has instead whipped together a kick-ass ME3-inspired case mod that's sure to send a shiver down the robotic spines of Reapers galaxy-wide.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/me3_mod_big_finish.jpg" width="400" height="509" /></p> <p>Lane based the ME3 mod around a NZXT Switch 810, and its craftsmanship earned him<a href="http://nzxtcorp.wordpress.com/2012/07/06/thanks-to-all-the-modders/"> a shout out from company founder Johnny Hou in a blog post</a>. A bevy of sponsors helped Lane build the Normandy SR2 homage from his fortress of solitude (aka an RV in the woods of New Hampshire), including Plextor, EK Waterblocks and NZXT itself.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/me3_mod_14_big.jpg" width="373" height="535" /></p> <p>The interior keeps up the red, white and black ME3 color scheme with a pair of Powercolor Radeon HD 6970s in Crossfire, red fans, and a red- and white-tinged Fatal1ty Professional Series mobo from ASRock. The liquid coursing through the cooling system is a nice red and white mix, too, while the exterior of the case is a mixture of hand-painting and di-noc carbon fiber sheets. There's even a little Normandy recreation on the liquid cooling reservoir.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/me3_mod_side.jpg" width="523" height="479" /></p> <p>Making this masterpiece took a lot of work. You can retrace David's steps in his <a href="http://www.overclock.net/t/1222200/sponsored-mass-effect-3-nzxt-switch-810-build-log">epic 100 page-plus build log</a>, which thankfully has an index for quickly jumping to specific updates. A few final touches should be posted soon. Like what you see? We've recently <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/modders_toolkit_everything_you_need_make_kick-ass_custom_case_mods">outlined all the tools you need to start modding yourself</a>; David's ME3 build log shows you how to use them.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/me3_mod_reservoir.jpg" width="523" height="519" /></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/mybadomens_mass_effect_3_case_mod_will_rock_your_intergalactic_socks#comments case mod case mods computer modding cool Mass Effect 3 modding News Mon, 09 Jul 2012 18:44:41 +0000 Brad Chacos 23732 at http://www.maximumpc.com NZXT's "Hue" LED Controller Offers Custom Case Lighting with Minimum Fuss http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/nzxts_hue_led_controller_offers_custom_case_lighting_minimum_fuss <!--paging_filter--><p>Not everything in life is clear-cut. Take LED lighting in your PC for instance; some people love the look of colorful bulbs, while the same effect makes others want to claw their eyes out with a molex tool. If you fall into the former camp, NZXT's new "Hue" LED controller might just be up your alley. It's a premade lighting solution that seems flexible enough to satisfy DIYers who want custom rave club-like effects without worrying about inverters and grounding wires.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/nzxt_hue_big.jpg" width="600" height="205" /></p> <p>The controller itself slips into a 5.25-inch drive bay and sports three controls, which let you manually tweak the RGB color settings, brightness and pulse speed of the unit's LED lights. Fading, flashing, color changing -- it's all there. The lighting itself comes in the form of a 2 meter-long sleeve with 24 LEDs peppered throughout; it's nice and bendy, so you're able to snake the lights through your rig any way you see fit.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/nzxt_hue_case.jpg" width="600" height="542" /></p> <p>NZXT's $33 Hue controller uses a SATA connection and is already available; you can <a href="http://www.nzxt.com/new/products/case_accessories/hue">find more information on NZXT's website</a>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/07/06/nzxt-hue-case-lighting/"><em>Via Engadget</em></a></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/nzxts_hue_led_controller_offers_custom_case_lighting_minimum_fuss#comments case mods cool Hardware led led controller lighting nzxt nzxt hue News Fri, 06 Jul 2012 17:05:34 +0000 Brad Chacos 23719 at http://www.maximumpc.com Modders Toolkit: Everything You Need to Make Kick-Ass Custom Case Mods http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/modders_toolkit_everything_you_need_make_kick-ass_custom_case_mods <!--paging_filter--><p>If you're in the habit of giving credence to tired clichés, you're probably aware that a good chef never blames a mistake on his tools. That's not quite true when it comes to case modding. Anybody who's ever tried molding metal (or anything else) into newfound shapes knows that skill is definitely a factor, but even Modderati masters can't turn ducks into swans if their tools aren't up to snuff. On the flip side, solid tools can help novices pump out professional-looking mods.</p> <p>But just what tools does a modder need in his toolkit? We're glad you asked. If you found yourself flipping through our <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/pc_pr0n_25_new_kick-ass_case_mods">kick-ass case mods gallery</a> and wondering how you -- yes, <em>you</em> -- could craft such beautiful works with your own hands, this handy-dandy guide will get you going in the right direction. Everything from beginning tools to advanced tools to sources for super-advanced services can be found in this lengthy tome… and most of the basic tools could already be sitting in your garage.</p> <h3>Expert Modders Drop Knowledge Bombs</h3> <p>None of this would have been possible without the help of three Modderati maestros whose innovative builds have been blazing trails and wowing onlookers for years:</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/bill_dirt_showdown_0.jpg" width="400" height="497" /></p> <p><strong>Bill Owen of <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/index.html">Mnpctech</a></strong> rose to fame on the back of his mod-making prowess but he's since expanded Mnpctech into a true resource for case craftsmen, selling tools and custom-made modding accessories. Mnpctech has an extensive series of <a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/MonsterMawd?feature=watch">video tutorials covering basic modding techniques</a> and Bill's <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/casemodblog/">Case Mod Blog</a> is a frequently updated resource. Above is the "<a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/casemodblog/2012/06/20/ready-to-race-dirt-showdown-fx-8150-gaming-pc-for-amd-giveaway/">DiRT Showdown</a>" mod he recently made for an AMD giveaway.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/iron_man_4.jpg" width="576" height="324" /></p> <p><strong>Ron Lee Christianson of <a href="http://bluehorsestudios.blogspot.com/">BHSTECH</a></strong> created the <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/iron_man_pc_mod_kicks_bionic_ass_creator_explains_how_it_happened">awesome Iron Man mod</a> that was on display at ThermalTake's booth at Computex. He's currently working on a Captain America-themed mod and provided a lot of the pictures of basic modding tools.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/asphiax_at_at.jpg" width="600" height="364" /></p> <p><strong>Sander van der Velden (a.k.a. <a href="http://asphiax.wordpress.com/">Asphiax</a>)</strong> recently took Tatooine by (sand)storm with his Imperial AT-AT mod. His current work-in-progress, the <a href="http://www.overclock.net/t/1271532/asphiax-venator-class-republic-star-destroyer-scratch-build">VENATOR Class Republic Star Destroyer</a>, is gearing up to be just as impressive. Sander's a scratch build fanatic who dropped a lot of knowledge about advanced techniques.</p> <p>Thanks for the assist, guys. Now on to the show!</p> <h3>Safety First, Kids</h3> <p>Before you pick up your first file or plug in a drill press, make sure you're dressed up in gear that'll keep you safe. Work gloves are a must, as are latex gloves and a respirator if you're working with paint or other chemicals. Doing some heavy machining? Wear some ear plugs. Anti-static straps are a good idea if you're poking around electronics. Then, there are safety glasses, which should be a mainstay on every modder's face.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/smith.wesson.safety.glasses.ansiz87.1_0.jpg" width="450" height="157" /></p> <p>"My most important tool is my safety glasses!" Bill says. His favorite pair is the "stylish and comfortable" Smith and Wesson Elite safety glasses, which <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/Safetyglasses.html">he sells through Mnpctech</a>. But what if stylish and comfortable isn't your thing? "No matter what brand or type of safety glasses you use, your safety glasses should meet the High Impact level of the ANSI Z87.1+ safety standards."</p> <p>Got it? Good! Now let's crack open this toolkit.</p> <hr /> <h3>Before You Mod: Planning Out Your Build</h3> <p>Most modders recommend formally planning out your build in some way, especially if it requires a lot of precision work. Even a simple drawing on the back of a napkin provides a solid guideline to a basic build. Our Modderati experts go for more intricate planning, however.</p> <p>"A computer program like Adobe Illustrator or <a href="http://sketchup.google.com/">SketchUp</a> is great for R&amp;D to get your ideas on a visual scope before to hit the workbench," Ron says.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/asphiax_audi_idea.jpg" width="550" height="257" /></p> <p>Sander takes a different approach. "I like to build my computers like the Russians built their spacecraft: Trial and error. Try something: if it works, continue, and if it doesn't, go back to the drawing board and start again. That's why I always build a mockup of the object first from MDF or EPS foam to visualize the work I need to do and get paper design impossibilities out of the way."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/asphiax_concept_build.jpg" width="600" height="409" /></p> <p>Finally, if you're going to be building anything from scratch -- be it a case window or snakes slithering out of a hard drive bay -- decide which materials you'll want to use for the job, as some materials require special tooling. Sander the scratch modder started out using MDF on his wholly custom builds, but has since converted to aluminum, while Ron prefers using ABS styrene plastic for his home-made accents to premade cases.</p> <p>"It's rigid, durable and it'll stand up to much abuse," he explains. "You can sand, drill, shape and mold it to most any shape, and all ranges of paint -- from water based to urethanes -- will adhere to the surface."</p> <p>Acrylic or Plexiglas is another very popular modding material. It's a bit finicky, though; if your saw blade is too coarse or moving too fast, Plexi cracks and melts like nobody's business. Check out this <a href="http://www.bit-tech.net/modding/2008/03/14/a_modders_guide_to_acrylic/1">insanely in-depth article about working with acrylics</a> if there's a new window in your case mod's future.</p> <h3>Basic Tools Do Most Of The Work</h3> <p>"I don't want to discourage up-and-coming modders into thinking that they need a shop full of high end tools and machines to mod," Ron says. "Ninety percent of the Iron Man and Biohazard builds were made from a straight edge, an X-Acto blade and the Dremel multi-tool."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/dremel.jpg" width="600" height="376" /></p> <p><strong>Rotary tools</strong> are widely considered the most-used tool of the modding trade; they're relatively inexpensive, with swappable accessories that are perfect for drilling, sanding, cutting, polishing and a whole, whole lot more. Most modders love their trusty Dremel -- in fact, "Dremel" is pretty much a verb when it comes to modding -- but it isn't the only rotary tool out there.</p> <p>"Don't be predictable and list Dremel!" Bill Owen says. "<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Black-Decker-RTX-6-3-Speed-Accessories/dp/B0001GUDRI">Black &amp; Decker's RTX Rotary Tool</a> is equally as good as Dremel -- for less money -- and it accepts all Dremel brand attachments, including Dremel's #225-01 Flex Shaft Attachment." Don't bother buying a cordless rotary tool, either; Bill says they aren't worth the money. </p> <p><img src="/files/u138055/cordless_drill_0.jpg" width="200" height="208" style="float: right;" />Whether or not your <strong>power drill</strong> -- another must-have case modding tool, perfect for making small, clean holes in computer cases and other things -- needs a cord is up for debate. Some people prefer the consistent, hassle free oomph a cord provides, while others like the flexibility of a battery-powered cordless model. Sander van der Velden falls firmly in the former camp.</p> <p>"(With cordless drills) I always run out of power when I need it and forget to unplug the charging battery, causing it to go lazy," he says. "So I use a wired power tool/screwdriver. Always enough power at your service." Either way, don't forget to buy bits!</p> <p>Here are some other basic, fairly low-cost tools that belong in a modder's toolkit:</p> <p><strong>Squares, straight edges, measuring tape, markers and pencils</strong> - Squares and straight edges are a must-have for lining up straight cuts, while measuring tape and writing utensils to mark measurements off with help with that whole "cutting once" thing. </p> <p>Basic varieties of all of the above will do, but Mnpctech offers an interesting little straight edge called the "<a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/PC_Modder_Ruler.html">PC Modder Ruler</a>." It includes thickness gauges, template locations for both 2.5, 3.5 and 5.25-inch drives, and references and templates for common fan sizes, screw threads, vandal switches, and water cooling barbs and tubes. There's a tap and drill size chart as well as a list of common fraction/metric/inches conversions, too. The ruler's available in either aluminum or an eye-catching copper, though the copper version costs twice as much.</p> <p>Bill sent us one to play around with and we have to say, this handy tool could save modders some time and measurement-related headaches. The amount of information on the 12-inch body is kind of amazing, actually. Plus, it's hefty enough to deter would-be robbers if you swing it at them.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/mnpctech_mod_ruler.jpg" width="400" height="431" /></p> <p><strong>Center punch</strong> - Punches a guiding dent into metal so that your drill bit doesn't jerk around crazily like your Grandma doing the chicken dance.</p> <p><strong>Hand files</strong> - Good for quickly deburring the edges of said cut when you don't want to bust out your rotary tool's sanding attachment, especially in small areas.</p> <p><strong>Hobby knives with miter box</strong> - For fine detail work, nothing beats the precision of small hobby knives. The miter boxes found in many hobby knife sets have carved channels for 45-degree and 90-degree cuts.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/hobby_knife_miter_box.jpg" width="600" height="366" /></p> <p><strong>Glues, hot glue gun, epoxy</strong> - For, um, gluing two things into one thing. Hot glue should be good enough for most things, while Gorilla Glue ensures a more permanent bond. Epoxy is good for gluing plastic to metal. Acrylic glue actually fuses separate pieces of acrylic (like Plexiglas) into a single piece.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/glues.jpg" width="600" height="333" /></p> <p><strong>Table clamps and vises</strong> - These allow you to secure materials to your workbench, ensuring things won't go screwy at the last second when you're making a critical cut.</p> <p><strong>Pliers, screwdrivers, Allen wrenches, normal wrenches, tweezers, etc</strong>. - All the tools you'll need to fiddle around with cases, drive bays and the like. A set of precision screwdrivers is a worthwhile investment as many cases use smaller screws.</p> <p><strong>Wire strippers and cutters and a soldering iron</strong> - Plan on installing LED lights or any other electrical work? You'll almost definitely need these tools. Some Molex tools probably couldn't hurt, either.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/wire_snippers_etc.jpg" width="500" height="375" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>Image credit via <a href="http://www.mignonette-game.com/assembly.php">mignonette-game.com</a></em></p> <p style="text-align: left;"><strong>Tin snips and a nibbler</strong> - Rotary tools are wondrous things, but their rapidly spinning heads cause metal to heat up and possibly warp if you're not careful. Tin snips and nibblers also make solid cuts, only without the thermal effects. Tin snips work as expected; nibblers (both manual and powered version are available) take small, circular bites out of metal and require a starting hole. Both leave cuts that often need to be filed down for smoothness.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/nibbler.jpg" width="542" height="308" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">Now on to bigger tools that make bigger cuts!</p> <hr /> <h3>Banging out holes</h3> <p>Whether you're making a new exhaust fan or the open mouth of a fiery demon, poking a hole through a case is almost inevitable during case modding. There are several options available for making said holes, however, starting with a <strong>bi-metal hole saw set</strong>.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/hole_saw_and_arbor.png" width="558" height="261" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>Bi-metal hole saw sets are specialized attachments that turn everyday power drills into badass machines capable of cutting holes of various sizes, though you'll need an arbor that fits your drill in order to use them. Most can also be used for cutting wood or plastic. "I use these to cut out fan holes and scratch-build pieces like the arc-reactor on the Iron Man build," Ron says.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/iron_man_6.jpg" width="576" height="324" /></p> <p>That's right -- that badass Arc Reactor above was built using a simple hole saw set. (And some additional techniques, of course.) Bill Owen's actually made a <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wGlWZ24QsE">video guide to using hole saw sets for case modding</a>. He also supplied us with this handy-dandy list of conversions:</p> <ul> <li>80mm = 3-inch hole saw</li> <li>92mm = 3.5-inch hole saw</li> <li>120mm = 4.5-inch hole saw</li> <li>140mm = 5.5-inch hole saw</li> </ul> <p>For fan screw holes, Bill suggests using a <a href="http://roperwhitney.com/punching/2-45.cfm">Roper Whitney No. 5 Jr. Hand Punch</a>. It works fast and comes out clean.</p> <p>If you're super-serious about making clean holes and have a lot of money to throw at modding, Bill recommends investing in <strong>knockout punches</strong>, specifically knockout punches made by Greenlee. "No need to deburr the edges of a hole saw or jigsaw cut anymore!" he says.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/knockout_punch.jpg" width="600" height="371" /></p> <p>Knockout punches use elbow grease and the slow, steady pressure of tightening the punch using a screw to knock holes through metal. Various-sized sets and stand-alone punches can be found online, but be warned: they often cost several hundred dollars. You'll also need a socket wrench to use a knockout punch, and Bill recommends a wrench at least 19 inches long. (It takes a lot of oomph to punch through metal!) He's also made a <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCkKnk6yqbM">video guide for using knockout punches</a>.</p> <p><img src="/files/u138055/drill_press.jpg" width="200" height="278" style="float: right;" />Ultra-precise holes need a <strong>drill press</strong>. Drill presses remove any chance of either the drill or the material shifting, and they also work with the same accessories as a standard drill, including hole saw sets. Small, basic models can be found&nbsp; for less than $100 online.</p> <p>"To make sure the holes are perfectly perpendicular to the material I use a drill press," Sander says. "Not a professional one, but a low end one, which is more than enough for this kind of work. Also, drilling a fan hole into a piece of Plexi is so much easier when you use a drill press as it stabilizes the drill, which stops the blade from biting into the Plexi and causing it to crack."</p> <h3>Cutting Things</h3> <p>Rotary tools are nice, but sometimes their cutting attachments just won't do the trick. When you've got a big, long cut lined up, saws are the best way to go. Modders tend to use band saws and jigsaws. Note that different materials require different cutting speeds and saw tooth density; Plexi requires a slower, finer cut than metals, for example.</p> <p><strong>Bandsaw</strong> - "I find myself using the band saw for long straight cuts into various materials, and use a 14tpi (teeth per inch) blade for most my work," Ron says. He, like most modders, considers the tool a must-have.</p> <p><strong><img src="/files/u138055/black_and_decker_jigsaw.jpg" width="228" height="185" style="float: right;" />Jigsaw</strong> - Jigsaws use thin, fast moving stroke-action blades. A jigsaw can cut straight, sure, but its real advantage lies in its ability to handle curved lines and scrolls as well as its overall versatility; jigsaws work well on almost any case as well as Plexi. They're also much more portable than bandsaws.</p> <p><a href="http://www.proxxon-tools.com/tools/Proxxon-DSH-2-Speed-Fretsaw-240V--783.html"><strong>Proxxon DSH Electrical Fret Saw</strong></a> - Scratch modders take note: "This thing is its weight worth in GOLD!" Sander says. "It's my most used and versatile tool. I use it to cut MDF up to 20mm, Plexi up to 12mm and aluminum up to 10mm.</p> <p>"The blades are detachable so you can drill a hole in a piece of material and saw from the inside. Brilliant for making fan holes, windows, ventilation slots, drive cages and what not. Also, the cuts are straight and clean and I can set two speeds, slow for Plexi and fast for aluminum."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/proxxon_fretsaw.jpg" width="450" height="295" /></p> <p>We're almost there! The next page has even more advanced tools, links to modding-friendly service providers and some parting words by a couple of our Modderati experts.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <h3>Advanced Tools</h3> <p><strong>Sander</strong> - No, not our scratch builder, an actual power sander, which can help you strip the paint off of cases (and other stuff) much faster and more efficiently than sandpaper alone. Lie the case panel flat on the table and let gravity guide the tool to ensure an even finish. Modders on a budget can stick to sanding blocks or sandpaper instead. The higher the grit, the finer the finish, with sub-100 grits working well for rough work like deburring.</p> <p><strong>Airbrush or paint sprayer</strong> - A solid paint job adds a lot to a mod. Paint sprayers are good for flat, solid coats while airbrushes offer a lot more versatility. Check out <a href="http://www.airbrushtutor.com/airbrush-tutorials.php">Airbrush Tutor</a> to brush up on your basic know-how. You'll need an air compressor to go along with a paint sprayer or air gun.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/airbrush.jpg" width="475" height="356" /></p> <p><strong>Hotwire or thermocutting devices</strong> - These sport a heated wire and are normally used for cutting through foam or plastic. Sander uses his <a href="http://www.globalindustrial.com/g/tools/Grinders-Sanders/Foam-Rubber-Cutter/proxxon-thermocutters-foam-plastic">Proxxon Thermocutter</a> "to cut EPS foam down to the right size and get organic shapes out of the blocks. You can bend the wire in any shape you like and it will cut through the foam like a warm knife through butter. Great for making fins or small extensions to whatever you are building."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/proxxon_thermocutter.jpg" width="400" height="381" /></p> <p>He also uses a smaller hotwire device to create bends in Plexiglas up to 6mm thick. That's thinking outside the box! (If you don't have Sander's budget, a heat gun can accomplish the same thing, albeit with less precision.)</p> <p><strong>Aluminum bending table (a.k.a. a bending break)</strong> - This is <em>waaaaay</em> more than the average modder needs, but Sander just picked one up and he loves it for scratch builds. "It bends 63 cm strips of 1.5mm aluminum with ease and can be used to create almost everything. Custom eye candy that can take a beating!" Under the pic of the bending table is a pic of the VENATOR build's aluminum base.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/aluminum_bending_table.jpg" width="600" height="337" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/venator_aluminum.jpg" width="600" height="337" /></p> <h3>Service Providers For Even More Advanced Techniques</h3> <p>"Sometimes the arsenal of tools the garage won't help, especially when you need to make a truly unique part or creating a scratch built PC," Bill Owen says. "Here are the resources Mnpctech uses and recommends for helping you create a truly custom PC."</p> <p><strong>Karl'z Grafix</strong><br /><a href="http://karlzvinylgrafix.com/">http://karlzvinylgrafix.com/</a> <br />karlz.custom.graphics@gmail.com<br />612-412-1797</p> <p>"When we need specialty graphics made, we contact Karl Maser, at <strong>Karl'z Grafix</strong>. He can make any custom graphic or logo applique we need for PC window or panels. He specializes in small quantity orders and one of a kinds."</p> <p><strong>Custom CNC Machined Parts by Centerline Manufacturing Inc.</strong><br />Chris Croy (President)<br />Chris@CLmanufacturing.com <br />Ph.260-348-7400<br />Fax. 260-693-6356</p> <p><strong>Laser Cutting &amp; Eteching Services</strong><br />803 41st Street North<br />Birmingham, Alabama 35212<br />205-595-7070 FAX 205-595-7021<br /><a href="http://www.lasercuttingservice.net">http://www.lasercuttingservice.net </a></p> <p><strong>E-MachineShop</strong><br /><a href="http://www.emachineshop.com">http://www.emachineshop.com</a></p> <p>"Emachineshop is expensive, but gives you the ability to make any part using injection molding, milling, turning, laser cutting, waterjet cutting, bending. You can download free, easy-to-use software which they can use to design objects ranging from personal computer chassis and car parts to door knobs in metal, plastic or other materials."</p> <h3>Parting words</h3> <p>Whew! That was a lengthy journey. Hopefully you're just a bit wiser for sticking it out this long. If you put any of this knowledge to good use, we'd love if you shared the results in the <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=37&amp;sid=ec18fdb903a61013614f6b05e7bcba38">Modders' Workshop section of our forum</a>.&nbsp; </p> <p>Before we wrap things up, Sander van der Velden (who <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=115435">showed off his USS Eurisko build in the Modders' Workshop</a>) has some parting words of wisdom:</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/eurisko.png" width="576" height="324" /></p> <p>"The best tip I can give a modder is not to try to save on your tools. Good preparation is half the work and good tooling is another quarter of that work. For example, when I started with aluminum building I got my first tap from a DIY market. It cost 10 Euros, including the oil. I almost gave up aluminum modding right there as it needed Superman powers to work it! </p> <p>"The blade was dull, the rattler didn't fit properly and the oil was like glue. I went to a small hardware store and bought some good stuff; 30 Euros in total and it just flew! In the time I did one hole with the old setup I did three with the new one using one finger. So if it's possible, try to borrow good tools instead of buying cheap and useless ones -- you'll be happier for it!"</p> <p>Ron Christianson has something to say about a critical tool, too: "The most important tool is your imagination, any thing that you can dream up can be built. With a little hard work and creativity you can bring your ideas from concept to completion."</p> <p>With that, we bid you happy modding! Want to see more mod-related features here on MPC? Let us know in the comments.</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/modders_toolkit_everything_you_need_make_kick-ass_custom_case_mods#comments case mod case mods computer modding diy guide feature features guide Hardware modding tools Features Wed, 27 Jun 2012 21:13:26 +0000 Brad Chacos 23666 at http://www.maximumpc.com This Scratch-Built, Desk-Based PC Mod Looks Great, Runs Cool And Rocks Three Monitors http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/scratch-built_desk-based_pc_mod_looks_great_runs_cool_and_rocks_three_monitors <!--paging_filter--><p>Something about case mods that build a PC into an actual desk are just plain <em>cool</em>. We loved Peter Brands' L3P Desk (featured in our <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/pc_pr0n_25_new_kick-ass_case_mods">kick-ass case mods gallery</a>) and a new mod by Shazim Mohammed continues on in the fine tradition by cramming a water-cooled, plenty powerful PC with a three monitor Eyefinity setup into a desk that was built completely from scratch. It might not be overly flashy, but it's impressive nonetheless.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/desk_mod_1.jpg" width="600" height="391" /></p> <p>The biggest challenge, Mohammed reports, was figuring out a way to get good air flow moving around the MDF-built desk. He enlisted the help of a Tom's Hardware forum-goer and planned a layout that includes three exhaust fans, two intake fans and a liquid cooling setup for the CPU and GPU. The final setup runs at 31 degrees Celcius.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/desk_mod_2.jpg" width="600" height="388" /></p> <p>Speaking of final setups, here's what Mohammed put into his desk, straight from the man himself:</p> <ul> <li><em>Asus Gene&nbsp; IV Motherboard</em></li> <li><em>i5-2500k Processor</em></li> <li><em>Radeon HD 7950 Graphics card with Water Cooling block (EK)</em></li> <li><em>3x Dell UltraSharp (U2312HM) Monitors (in Eyefinity setup) with a modded ergonomic mount.</em></li> <li><em>3x Gelid UV Reactive Green fans</em></li> <li><em>XSPC Raystorm CPU waterblock</em></li> <li><em>XSPC RX360 Radiator</em></li> <li><em>PrimoFlex UV Green tubinh</em></li> <li><em>Swiftech pump</em></li> </ul> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/desk_mod_3.jpg" width="600" height="392" /></p> <p>Head over to <a href="http://www.shazim-mohammad.com/portfolios/pc-deskcase-mod-2012-3/">Mohammed's build log</a> to see tons and tons of both in-progress and finished product pics. Seriously, there are a lot of them: just so you don't think your broadband connection's acting up, we'll warn you in advance that the website takes a long time to load. It's worth the wait, though.</p> <p><em><a href="http://www.engadget.com/2012/06/26/desk-case-pc-mod-ditches-glass-metal-for-wood/">Via Engadget</a> (suprisingly)</em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/scratch-built_desk-based_pc_mod_looks_great_runs_cool_and_rocks_three_monitors#comments case mod case mods cool Hardware News Tue, 26 Jun 2012 18:40:58 +0000 Brad Chacos 23655 at http://www.maximumpc.com Iron Man PC Mod Kicks Bionic Ass, Creator Explains How It Happened http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/iron_man_pc_mod_kicks_bionic_ass_creator_explains_how_it_happened <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u138055/iron_man_small.jpg" width="228" height="223" style="float: right;" />Ron Lee Christianson's known in modderati circles for the outstanding attention to detail in his case mods, and his latest project is no different: the Iron Man PC blows our mind. Commissioned by Thermaltake and built with Thermaltake's new Armor Revo case -- though you'd never know it just by looking at it -- this kick ass case contains the extra touches that make a difference, such as a replica of Iron Man's chest-bound Arc Reactor and a front-facing copy of Iron Man's helm that actually opens and closes. We spoke with Ron about the Iron Man mod and other things over the weekend. </p> <p>He told us that the Iron Man PC, which will show up in Thermaltake's booth at Computex next week, could be just the first of many Marvel-inspired cases; "Thermaltake and I are discussing the entire Avengers line of case mods," he writes. </p> <p>Thermaltake approached Ron with the Iron Man mod idea way back in January. "After discussing design ideas for weeks I got started on the build in early March. The greatest challenge was staying true to Marvel's design of the Iron Man suits and incorporating it into a PC case. I watched the movies over and over as I worked on the build trying to pick up on the fine details and personality of the suits."</p> <p>Ron keeps his skills honed by following the build logs of other in-progress case mods around the Internet. (You can see <a href="http://bluehorsestudios.blogspot.com/2012/03/iron-man-case-mod.html">the build log for the Iron Man PC</a> on Ron's BlueHorseStudios website, complete with a material list and dozens and dozens of pictures.) He also offers some tips and tricks for would-be modders:</p> <p>"The advice I'd give to anyone starting a build is to do a ton of research on your subject matter (and) document your work in work logs and free media outlets like Facebook and Youtube. Everyone has their own skill sets that they feel comfortable in, master those skills and don't be afraid to try new things... Attention to detail is everything."</p> <p>Click through the gallery below to see a bunch of pics of the final Iron Man build and two awesome in-progress pics of the Arc Reactor. More pics can be found in <a href="https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150588162285895.379366.24947585894&amp;type=3&amp;l=dac227452d">the worklog Thermaltake has up on its Facebook page</a>. Speaking of Facebook, if you like what you see, head over to <a href="http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150865248189886.424761.194326094885&amp;type=3">the May edition of Xoxide's "Build of the Month" competition</a>, where Ron's Iron Man PC is one of several finalists vying for the top spot.&nbsp; </p> <p><em>Follow Brad on <a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/114559883172848043224/posts">Google+</a> or <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/BradChacos">Twitter</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/iron_man_pc_mod_kicks_bionic_ass_creator_explains_how_it_happened#comments case mod case mods cool interview iron man thermaltake News Tue, 29 May 2012 17:14:57 +0000 Brad Chacos 23451 at http://www.maximumpc.com Top Case Modders, Manufacturers Collaborate On "John Hanlon Fundraiser PC" For Disabled Mentor http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/top_case_modders_manufacturers_collaborate_john_hanlon_fundraiser_pc_disabled_mentor <!--paging_filter--><p>Members of the case modding community have long looked up to John Hanlon, aka JohnHanlon303, as more than just a friendly face; many consider him a full-fledged mentor. Earlier this year, the community learned that Hanlon suffers from incurable asbestos poisoning that leaves him with 40 percent lung capacity and recently, left him permanently unable to work. Rather than simply sending social media condolences, the modderati, with the help of several sponsors, leaped into action to try and raise funds for Hanlon. The result -- the John Hanlon Fundraiser PC -- went <a href="http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&amp;item=320904584933#ht_1101wt_1139">up for auction on eBay this afternoon</a> and looks <em>amazing</em>.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/hanlon_pc_big.jpg" width="600" height="595" /></p> <p>Several of the modders whose work was highlighted in our recent <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/pc_pr0n_25_new_kick-ass_case_mods">case mod gallery</a> had a hand in the John Hanlon Fundraiser PC, and members of the Bit-Tech modding forums contributed gear -- including water pumps, fan grills and the Windows 7 OS -- to the build. Zotac, Steel Series, <a href="http://www.xtremecomputing.co.uk/">XtremeComputing.co.uk</a>, Patriot Memory, Paslis, Lutro0 Customs, Prolimatech and Gigabyte all offered up various hardware components, which are housed in a Define R3 Case donated by Fractal Design. <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/">Mnpctech</a> (of <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/star_trek_pc_boldly_go_where_no_pc_has_gone">Star Trek PC fame</a>) donated several other items and actually built the John Hanlon Fundraiser PC, complete with custom airbrush work by modding maestro Brad Galvin (whose work was highlighted in our <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/custom_cases_30_eye-popping_paint_jobs">eye-popping case mods feature</a>). Richard "DarthBeavis" Surroz of <a href="http://outoftheboxmods.com/">Out of the Box Mods</a> helped with the water cooling installation.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/hanlon_pc_interior.jpg" width="600" height="383" /></p> <p>This one-of-a-kind beaut's stacked with care, love, and all kinds of powerful components, so don't expect it to sell cheap. (In fact, it's already up at $1,025.) If <a href="http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&amp;item=320904584933#ht_1101wt_1139">the eBay auction's</a> a bit too rich for your blood, Alex Ftoulis (aka AnGEL) and Masbuskado Modding have also set up <a href="https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&amp;hosted_button_id=6MMNWRFWJHJQ8">a Paypal donation fund for Hanlon's benefit</a>. If it isn't, you have 10 days (until May 21) to place a bid.</p> <p>Thirsting for more? Mnpctech's Bill Owen gives a walkthrough of the finished build in the video below, and you can <a href="http://forums.bit-tech.net/showthread.php?p=2976270#post2976270">find the worklog here</a>. I won't spam you with stuff like this too often but this one's for a good cause, folks.</p> <p><object style="height: 390px; width: 640px;"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/fcL820qFvPE?version=3&amp;feature=player_embedded" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/v/fcL820qFvPE?version=3&amp;feature=player_embedded" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always"></embed></object></p> <p><em>Follow Brad on <a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/114559883172848043224/posts">Google+</a> or <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/BradChacos">Twitter</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/top_case_modders_manufacturers_collaborate_john_hanlon_fundraiser_pc_disabled_mentor#comments case mod case mods charity cool donation Hardware mnpctech modder modding News Fri, 11 May 2012 18:55:05 +0000 Brad Chacos 23313 at http://www.maximumpc.com PC Pr0n: 25 New, Kick-Ass Case Mods http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/pc_pr0n_25_new_kick-ass_case_mods <!--paging_filter--><p>A kick-ass case mod makes for a kick-ass PC. It's that simple. No matter whether you're rocking a Sandy Bridge-E or a Celeron, a water-cooled, LED-lit, hand-tailored and custom milled chassis stops traffic and sets lips a-whistlin' like nobody's business, proverbs about books and their covers be damned.</p> <p>The past six months have seen a flood of truly outstanding case mods hit the Interwebz. So we decided to take the time to showcase the best of the best in (mostly) recent memory -- with a little extra help from master modder Bill Owen of <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/">MNPCTech</a>, <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/casemodblog/">Case Mod Blog</a>, <a href="http://www.modmenshow.com/">Mod Men</a> and <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/star_trek_pc_boldly_go_where_no_pc_has_gone">Maximum PC Star Trek PC</a> fame.&nbsp; Because who knows the cream of the crop better than one of the cream of the crop?</p> <p>The first 10 mods come hand-picked from Bill himself, while we rounded out the rest of the gallery with even more eye-catching case mods, including six that were chronicled in our very own <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=37">Maximum PC Modder's Workshop forum</a>. Click on a pic to get an expanded view of it, or hit the links underneath the images to see in-progress work logs of the builds. Enjoy the eye candy!</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/pc_pr0n_25_new_kick-ass_case_mods#comments case case mod case mods chassis cool feature features Hardware kick ass kick-ass kickass modder modder's workshop modding Modding Features Thu, 26 Apr 2012 01:01:51 +0000 Brad Chacos 23205 at http://www.maximumpc.com MNPCTECH Creates Awesome Battlefield 3 Case Mod http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/mnpctech_creates_awesome_battlefield_3_case_mod <!--paging_filter--><p>Yeah, some of EA’s recent actions might have some of us scratching our heads, but c’mon – Battlefield 3 is Battlefield 3. You can’t deny that it’s going to be huge. To commemorate the game’s launch on October 25th, Bill Owen and the crew at MNPCTech – the very same folks who made <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/star_trek_pc_boldly_go_where_no_pc_has_gone">the super-spiffy Star Trek PC</a> earlier this year – slapped together a badass BF3 case mod.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u138055/bf3_case_mod.jpg" width="600" height="512" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">You can see a step-by-step log of the build over at <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/casemodblog/2011/10/04/the-battlefield-3-case-mod/">the Case Mod Blog</a>, but here’s a quick rundown: the guys started with one of Fractal Design’s Arc Mid tower cases, then stripped it down and covered every in of it in camouflage paint – even the interior. They added some recessed handles accented by chrome diamond plate to make it both portable and rugged looking, then got down to the fun stuff. Airbrush master Brad Galvin created a “peeled-back” look on the side of the rig, then painted BF3’s glowing soldier image coming out of it. They then finished things up to using a Dremel to add bullet holes to the acrylic panel on one side of the machine.</p> <p> It came out awesome. Again, check out <a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/casemodblog/2011/10/04/the-battlefield-3-case-mod/">the Case Mod Blog</a> for a ton of step-by-step pics.</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/mnpctech_creates_awesome_battlefield_3_case_mod#comments Battlefield 3 case mod case mods custom mnpctech News Wed, 05 Oct 2011 17:19:40 +0000 Brad Chacos 20683 at http://www.maximumpc.com L3p D3sk Case Mod: Not Your Average Computer Desk http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/l3p_d3sk_case_mod_not_your_average_computer_desk <!--paging_filter--><p><img src="/files/u46168/all-in-one_desk.jpg" width="303" height="170" style="float: right;" />Remember the totally kick-ass, <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=112124">Light Cycle-inspired scratch PC mod by veteran modder Boddaker (aka Brian Carter)</a> that was featured on our site recently? Called TRON Lightcycle PC, Boddaker’s entry for Cooler Master’s annual case mod competition (scratch build category) is currently the third most voted case mod in contention.&nbsp;</p> <p>As of now, the top spot belongs to the <a href="http://forum.coolermaster.com/viewtopic.php?f=49&amp;t=14742">L3p D3sk</a> by a 30-year-old Dutch guy named Peter. The rig is housed inside a desk, effectively making it an “all-in-one desk”, as Peter likes to call it.</p> <p>Completely made of aluminium and glass, the water-cooled L3p D3sk boasts the following specs:</p> <ul> <li>Intel Core i7 980X @ 4.5 Ghz</li> <li>Corsair Dominator GT 6GB DDR3-2000 CL7 (Elpida) @ 2000 7-7-7-20-1T</li> <li>ASUS Rampage III Extreme</li> <li>ASUS GTX580 SLI</li> <li>ASUS Xense + Sennheiser Xense</li> <li>Highpoint RocketRAID 3560 24x SATA-300 2 GB</li> <li>Bigfoot Networks™ Killer™ 2100 Gaming Network Card</li> <li>1x Intel 510 120Gb</li> <li>3x Corsair F60 raid0</li> <li>6x Hitachi Deskstar 7K2000 12TB raid5</li> <li>2x Optiarc AD-7241S-0B</li> <li>Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 800W</li> <li>Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 700W</li> <li>Dell U2711 27″ IPS</li> <li>2 x Dell 1703 17″ portrait</li> <li>Logitech Illuminated keyboard</li> <li>Mionix Naos 5000</li> <li>Mionix Alioth 400</li> </ul> <p>Even though it took Peter the best part of an year to put everything together, he completed most of the work during a three-week vacation. For someone&nbsp;avowedly new to the case modding scene, it's a tremenedous achievement.&nbsp;If you want, you can help Peter conquer the scratch build category of the CM 2011 Case Mod Competition by voting for his case mod <a href="http://casemod2011.coolermaster.com/list.php?c=2&amp;page=1#">here.</a></p> <p><em>Image Credit: L3p</em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/l3p_d3sk_case_mod_not_your_average_computer_desk#comments case mod case mods Cooler Master cooler master 2011 case mod competition l3p d3sk Rig tron lightcycle pc News Sat, 21 May 2011 06:06:29 +0000 Pulkit Chandna 18657 at http://www.maximumpc.com Forum Feature: Kick-Ass Tron Case Mod! http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/forum_feature_kick-ass_tron_case_mod <!--paging_filter--><p>When <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/forum_feature_we_have_forum">last we met</a>, I informed you of the existence of the <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/index.php">official Maximum PC forums</a> and exhorted you to a) visit and b) report back. If you have done so, thank you. If you have not, there is still time to escape the coming wrath.&nbsp;</p> <p>Hold on. I've just been notified that we're out of wrath, so you can safely disregard the previous threat. However, if you don't check out today's featured Forum thread, you're missing out on <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=112124">something amazing</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u22694/tronfairings.jpg" alt="Fairings" width="620" height="450" /><br /><strong>What could this be?</strong></p> <p>Right now, in the Modders' Workshop, Boddaker is documenting <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=112124">one of the most impressive scratch PC mods</a> we've ever seen: his Tron CM build.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u22694/tronsketchup1.jpg" alt="Tron case sketchup" width="620" height="300" /><br /><strong>An initial sketch of the Tron CM.</strong></p> <p style="text-align: left;">Based on the lightcycle design from Tron: Legacy, the case mod will be entered in a Cooler Master contest. <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=112124">Check out the forum thread</a> to see Boddaker (aka Brian Carter) as he documents his process: from initial Sketchup mockups to piece-by-piece install. As of this writing, he'd just started on the watercooling set up. The results are breathtaking.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u22694/watercooling_sofar.jpg" alt="watercooling" width="620" height="450" /><br /><strong>Everything's coming together.</strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u22694/ssdengine.jpg" alt="The engine compartment of the lightcycle" width="620" height="450" /><br /><strong>The lightcycle's engine compartment? Solid-state drives. Three of 'em</strong></p> <p>For a detailed build log and many, <em>many</em> more pictures documenting the build thus far, <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=37&amp;t=112124">go to the forum thread</a>! Seriously. What are you waiting for?</p> <p>Mad props to Brian, whose work we've followed for years: his Mystique2 case won <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/brian_carters_mystique2">our November 2007 Rig of the Month</a> contest. We can't wait to see the finished product! Be sure to check out his website at <a href="http://bods-mods.com/">http://bods-mods.com/</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>As always, if you have a particular thread you'd like highlighted, you can send me a private message on the forums (I'm&nbsp;<a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&amp;u=22694">nedwards</a>) or email me (nathan at maximumpc dot com).&nbsp;</em></p> <p><em>Long-time Maximum PC members should be able to log into the forums with their Maximumpc.com usernames and passwords; but if yours doesn't work, you might have to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/forums/ucp.php?mode=register">register a new forums account</a>. This will not supercede your user account on the website. As a spam-prevention measure, your first few posts will have to be approved by a moderator. So make 'em good!</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/forum_feature_kick-ass_tron_case_mod#comments boddaker brian carter case mods features forum feature forums news tron Features Fri, 13 May 2011 23:14:17 +0000 nedwards 18559 at http://www.maximumpc.com Modding Veterans MNPCTech Launch "Mod Men" Web Series http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/modding_veterans_mnpctech_launch_mod_men_web_series <!--paging_filter--><p>On Tuesday&nbsp;<a href="http://www.mnpctech.com/index.html">MNPCTech</a>, the veteran modders and custom part fabricators, put up a trailer for "Mod Men," their upcoming web series that takes you behind the scenes at one of the coolest computer modding shops in the country. Bill Owen, the founder, is one of the most prominent case modders in the world. In addition to creating full builds from scratch, MNPCTech sells tons of custom modding supplies, from mesh to screws to the custom-milled fan grills that adorn the front and top of the <a href="http://www.maximumpc.com/article/home/dream_machine_2010">2010 Dream Machine</a>. The series will follow the entire MNPC crew as they build custom PCs from scratch. I've been a fan of Bill's work for a long time, and can't wait to watch the series. Check out the teaser trailer below, and <a href="http://www.youtube.com/user/MonsterMawd">subscribe to their YouTube channel</a>!</p> <p><iframe title="YouTube video player" width="618" height="378" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GOdLgndprvY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/news/modding_veterans_mnpctech_launch_mod_men_web_series#comments case mods mnpctech mod men modding news News Thu, 03 Feb 2011 21:59:02 +0000 Nathan Edwards 17001 at http://www.maximumpc.com Rig of the Month: Project FiveWood http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/rig_month_project_fivewood <!--paging_filter--><div align="left"> </div> <p align="left">&nbsp;</p> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u53951/beauty_2.jpg" width="415" height="479" /></div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Chris Cook comes from a long line of artists and explains that “it is this great gene pool that I am abusing here.” While Chris may make light of his own skills, it’s evident from these photos that he is  an able successor to his forebears. </p> <p>Project FiveWood  utilizes nine types of wood, including mahogany, cherry, pine, and cedar. Chris’s goal was to create not a wooden shell but rather a case made entirely of wood­—without a single screw! This project took more than 350 hours to complete—not including design time­. We find the result well worth the effort.</p> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u53951/side_shot.jpg" width="415" height="432" /></div> <div align="left"> </div> <p align="left">&nbsp;</p> <p> <table border="0" width="450" align="center"> <tbody> <tr> <td> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u53951/drive_open.jpg" width="305" height="415" /></div> </td> </tr> <tr> <td><strong>The 3.5-inch and 5.25-inch drive bays were constructed three times—each iteration used a different type of wood</strong></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </p><p>  </p> <table border="0" width="450" align="center" style="height: 469px"> <tbody> <tr> <td> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u53951/magnifying-glass_0.jpg" width="311" height="415" /></div> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p><strong>Although some people have questioned the rig’s thermal integrity, Chris asks, “Why would a wood case be hotter than an aluminum case? Designed properly, a wood rig would get no hotter than a standard machine.” </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p>&nbsp;</p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/rig_month_project_fivewood#comments case mods modding Rig of the Month rig of the month rigs November 2008 Features Sat, 08 Nov 2008 01:15:37 +0000 Tom Edwards 4182 at http://www.maximumpc.com Thom Davis Has the Best Seizure Ever http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/thom_davis_has_best_seizure_ever <!--paging_filter--><p>A man needs a place of his own, and when Thom Davis found using the family computer for his gaming pursuits to be less than ideal, he set about building the Seizure, the ultimate form-follows-function gaming rig.  His goal was to create a rig that was gaming friendly, had no exposed wires, and looked good in the living room. We think he succeeded on all three counts.</p> <p>While building the Seizure, Thom discovered that connector manufacturers definitely tend to think “inside the box,” and typically don’t make cables suitable for such a large rig, but with the assistance of a local electronics supply store, he was able to create the 6-foot cables he needed to complete the job.</p> <div style="text-align: center"><a href="/files/u22694/beautyflat.jpg" class="thickbox"><img src="/files/u22694/beautyflat-small.jpg" alt="Thom Davis' Seizure" width="415" height="260" /><br />(Click  for Full) </a></div> <p>The two front LED panels were inspired by ROC, the computer featured in <em>Airplane II</em>.  </p> <div style="text-align: center"><a href="/files/u22694/switches-full.jpg" class="thickbox"><img src="/files/u22694/switches-small.jpg" alt="Switches" width="415" height="234" /><br />(Click for Full)<br /></a></div> <p>These switches aren’t merely for show, each controls a different function, including monitors, audio, lighting, and the minifridge. A universal power supply guarantees mission-critical components will keep humming for 20 minutes after a power outage. </p> <div style="text-align: center"><a href="/files/u22694/lightboard-fuull.jpg" class="thickbox"><img src="/files/u22694/lightboard-small.jpg" alt="That's a lot of LEDs." width="415" height="475" /><br />(Click for Full)<br /></a></div> <p>Thom and his wife spent many a night hot-gluing 1,500 LEDs to the front panels­—nothing spells romance like a little candlelight, a bottle of wine, and a glue gun! </p> <p>To enter the Rig of the Month contest, your submission packet must contain your name, street address, and daytime phone number; no fewer than three high-res JPEGs (minimum size 1024x768) of your modified PC; and a 300-word description of what your PC represents and how it was modified. Emailed submissions should be sent to <strong>rig@maximumpc.com</strong>. Snail mail submissions should be sent to <strong>Rig of the Month, c/o Maximum PC, 4000 Shoreline Court, Suite 400, South San Francisco, CA 94080</strong>.  </p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/thom_davis_has_best_seizure_ever#comments case mods computer mods LEDs modding mods Rig of the Month rig of the month triple monitors 2008 September 2008 From the Magazine Features Mon, 29 Sep 2008 23:09:20 +0000 Tom Edwards 3687 at http://www.maximumpc.com This Mod Goes HawgWild http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/this_mod_goes_hawgwild <!--paging_filter--><p>V ic McGuire found a diamond in the rough when he set out to build his latest mod. While browsing through a computer store, he found a custom case with chrome-plated front air grills in the junk pile and an idea came to mind. After arduously sanding the rust off the grills, Vic had the basis for the HawgWild U.S.A.    </p> <p>The side of the case originally held an 8cm fan. After a little work with a scroll saw and a dremel, Vic created a window to show off the rig’s parts. </p> <div style="text-align: center"><a href="/files/u22694/Rig_beauty.jpg" class="thickbox"><img src="/files/u22694/Rig_beauty_415.jpg" alt="HawgWild U.S.A" width="415" height="427" /></a><br /><strong>After simulating several paint designs in Photoshop, Vic decided on this black and orange motif with a hammered metal finish as a texture coat.</strong> <strong>(click for full)</strong></div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"><a href="/files/u22694/Rig_callout_window2.jpg" class="thickbox"><img src="/files/u22694/Rig_callout_window_model.jpg" alt="Window Callout" width="415" height="150" /></a><br /><strong>Vic purchased a model Harley, stripped it, painted it to match the case, and planted it in the window.  <br />(click for full)</strong></div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u22694/Rig_detail_insignia.jpg" alt="Rig Insignia Detail" width="200" height="426" /><br /><strong>The difference is in the details. These official emblems complete the rig’s look.</strong></div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <div style="text-align: center"><img src="/files/u22694/vic_and_rig_guts_small.jpg" alt="Vic and His Rig" width="415" height="311" /><br /><strong>Vic and his rig.</strong></div> <div style="text-align: center"> </div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>For submitting this month’s winning entry, Vic has won a $250 gift certificate. </em></p> <p>To enter the Rig of the Month contest, your submission packet must contain your name, street address, and daytime phone number; no fewer than three high-res JPEGs (minimum size 1024x768) of your modified PC; and a 300-word description of what your PC represents and how it was modified. Emailed submissions should be sent to <strong>rig@maximumpc.com</strong>. Snail mail submissions should be sent to <strong>Rig of the Month, c/o Maximum PC, 4000 Shoreline Court, Suite 400, South San Francisco, CA 94080</strong>.  </p> http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/this_mod_goes_hawgwild#comments case mods computer modding mod modding mods Rig of the Month rig of the month 2008 August 2008 From the Magazine Features Mon, 22 Sep 2008 22:55:21 +0000 Tom Edwards 3603 at http://www.maximumpc.com