Well Stage 1 of Clocker's latest dream project is almost done. At least done enough to get her running and post some pics...
Thermaltake Xaser III 2000+ aluminum case
Asus A7N8X Deluxe (ver.2.0) mainboard (thanks to Lamsey for the recommendation)
AMD Athlon 2600XP
Mushkin PC 2700 (black) ddr memory- 1GB
Zalman 7000A-Cu heatsink
Zalman heatpipe on Radeon 9000Pro graphics card
WD 160GB 7000rpm HDD
This is the basic framework from which I hope to upgrade as money allows. I'm buying a Athlon 3200XP and 1GB of Mushkin PC3200 memory as soon as my computer geek buddy gets his new 64bit AMD. I get to buy his castoffs at a great price.
The case was purchased with an eye to switching over to H2O cooling when the new CPU gets into my hot,sweaty hands. It's actually much larger than I need, but it makes adding all the hardware involved a lot easier.
This is the front of the case with the bay door closed. I removed the Thermaltake fan controller panel and put my old panel in. The Thermaltake rheostats really didn't seem to do to much in the way of regulating the fan speed.
I also removed the backlit Thermaltake logo from the lower panel and cobbled in a grill. There are two fans directly behind this opening and I wanted better air flow...
I apologize for the crap photograhy,btw...
This shows the inside bottom front of the case. There used to be 6 HDD bays here, but not anymore! This is the space where the bulk of the water cooling hardware will go (sometime in the future... ). I mounted the HDD in the removable floppy drive bay and cut out the bottom and mounted a fan to blow onto the HDD.
Just more beauty shots, really. Shows all the drives and the blowhole fan in the roof. Monster Zalman heatsink coming into view...
And thar she blows! This thing is huge. Seriously. About the diameter of a CD and weighs a ton. I modified the mounting a bit by placing spacers behind the mobo and actually screwing the heatsink mounting brackets into the case wall. That way the board isn't supporting all that weight. It is very quiet... the fan runs between 1350 and 2500 rpm. So far ( admittedly only a day so far...) the chip temp has stabilized right around 40C. Not bad for being almost silent.
A general view of the inside.
I spent what seemed like days trying to get the wiring the way I wanted it. Ultimately I bit the bullet and hacked away at the harness, custom fitting as much as possible ( leaving open the possibility for reconfiguration and adding components) and sheathing as I went. It actually looks better in person.
Now that this stage is done I can begin to plan ( and save money! ) for the next step. Monday I'm going to an aquarium shop to see what I can learn about pumps.
For a radiator I plan on using the heater core from a car. The water reservoir will probably be an aluminum overflow tank off a race car. I'm still researching the water block for the chip, but this Asus board has the appropriate holes around the CPU mounting socket, so my options are pretty wide.
Next up is a Soundblaster Audigy Platinum set up. The control panel from that will replace my current fan control panel so I'm already working a new one to go into the front of the floppy drive bays.
Edit: Can someone tell me if HDDs are position sensitive? Do they care if they are upside down or standing on their end? I'm thinking of maybe moving mine and need to know what my orientation restrictions are- if any.