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DIY PC Project: Who says you cant use a pre-built?
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DIY PC Project: Who says you cant use a pre-built?Posted:

Dovashin
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Welcome to my new project, I've decided to grab my old ASUS prebuilt and make it something powerful and special. I've done things before to this PC like adding a new PSU (EVGA 600b 80+, good but not modular which I will get to), added a GTX 760, and everything else is A-OK. Its got a pretty decent A8-5000 which turbos to 3.8ghz on load and for what it is, performs good. It has 12gigs of DDR3 RAM that is surprisingly running at 1600mhz (3 sticks). I don't think its running dual channel but I could be wrong.

Background information:
- Case is MicroATX, with metal screw (Raised) standoffs
- No balls or good looks
- No cable management options in the back of the case (I tried, just couldnt even fit extra sata's back there)
- Hasn't juiced yet
- Both side panels come off, and the front of the case comes off which reveals an extra fan exhaust and allowed for the disk drive to come out.
- No 2.5 SSD slots
- No USB 3.0 headers boys

Before: 2014 modernization

7470 and shitty 350watt PSU are exiled and new champs take over
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As you can see, pretty shitty cable management as I had some rando from bestbuy do it because I needed to make some use of my geek squad membership. Got too lazy to redo it so I left it as it was.

After: 2015 Modernization

Overall look
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PSU
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Posting
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Cable Management Section

Cable Management #1: Front fan cable ties
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Cable Management #2: HDD and Mobo Power
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Cable Management #3: The Left-Over shit
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The Case
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Notes on Case:
- The side panel with the window was done a few months ago. The window is plexi and was cut to be 1/2 inch bigger than case cutout. Holes were done using a sheet to x the holes off and I plan on adding something to prevent dust but allow air to go through holes. And of course the case was cut and sanded to prevent any cuts and to make the rounded shape more "rounded".

- I have finally fixed the issue the window caused, but if you can see in previous pictures the Optical Drive "bracket" was bent with a pair of pliers. Now the panel comes off and goes on without hassle.




Mini Rant:

So, to you peeps that say cable management with Mid-ATX cases is impossible even with a Module PSU, here is a Pre-built MicroATX case with absolutely 0 intended cable management.... All it takes is some sweat, education, and confidence. I destroyed not one component in the system and dug right into it with no plan on how it would work. Of course I took precautions like taking out the GPU and powering off the system as-well as having a extra PSU plugged in with the switch turned off for grounding and touched it every 2 minutes but thats not the point. Grow some balls and make your system yours and feel proud. If you are building a new PC though, make sure to "Post" your system outside of the case to make sure everything works and is detected before going ham, you dont want to find a DOA after hours of perfecting and building.

Plan going forward:

I am saving the RAM, GPU, PSU, HDD for Archives, and case cables. Everything else is leaving the system and will be decommissioned.

Saving:
GTX 760 2gb Reference [Has small OC on it]
1600mhz RAM [3 Sticks, RAM is RAM]
Toshiba 5400RPM 1tb HDD [Archive for safe]
EVGA 600b 80 Plus Bronze PSU [Non-modular but its already cable managed and setup for easily changing the motherboard and storage]


This is the upgrade plan for this little guy
Part List: [ Register or Signin to view external links. ]

Justifications and Hyperlinks for lazy people:

[ Register or Signin to view external links. ] : I've already got a gaming PC, but this little man will be for rendering and heavy CPU work. Whatever I want it to be, it can be it. Which justifies the Xeon E3-1241 V3. Also the thing is super sexy with its incredible watt to performance and thermal ratios compared to i7's. Stock cooler will be just fine since cpu speed's are locked after the 3.9ghz boost. (Xeon's have much better coolers than the stocks sent with i7's or i5's)

[ Register or Signin to view external links. ] : Mobo is nice, cheap, and is MicroATX. Good reviews and is H97 so I can get an i5 whenever, not like I will though.

[ Register or Signin to view external links. ] : I've got some BLACKS sitting around for storage drives but I did need a new SSD so I went with SamySon as it has good read and write. Its a boot drive and will also store my main applications.

[ Register or Signin to view external links. ] : Noctua baby, love the fans they produce.

Will keep y'all updated when parts come along and I get to building it.

Updated new post


Last edited by Dovashin ; edited 1 time in total

The following 6 users thanked Dovashin for this useful post:

Dinkleberg (12-04-2015), Saki (12-04-2015), Forest (12-04-2015), Skittle (12-04-2015), Adam (12-04-2015), Craig (12-04-2015)
#2. Posted:
Adam
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More of this!

I love projects and gratz on making one. Look forward to see what you do.
#3. Posted:
James-
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Get the skylake xeons for $20 more, they are better
#4. Posted:
Saki
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So basically what you're saying is..

console > pc?
#5. Posted:
Jasty
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James- wrote Get the skylake xeons for $20 more, they are better


Honestly man, I agree with you for $20 you can't go wrong for such better results.
#6. Posted:
Rizzah
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I am wanting to do this with a pc that i will buy cheap.
#7. Posted:
Dovashin
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Fusey wrote I am wanting to do this with a pc that i will buy cheap.


Well here is the deal on that. After doing research on my actual system [ASUS CM1745] I needed to determine if I could actually replace the motherboard. Believe it or not, some pre-builts have a specially designed motherboard for the case and the headers are the same way. Watch out for that.

This system was bought in 2013 as a backup. It eventually turned into a test bench and I upgraded it to have a branded PSU and GPU in 2014. Now it's going to become my workbench for rendering, designing, large-resolution projects, etc. This is expensive in one go considering at the time the system was $800 [2013]. In 2014 the GTX 760 was $230 and the PSU was $60. Now add all those up with the new parts im getting (About $430) and you get a number that could be used on one awesome PC.

It's fun as hell though, and looks BA afterwards.
#8. Posted:
Dovashin
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James- wrote Get the skylake xeons for $20 more, they are better


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#9. Posted:
Dovashin
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Update:

Switching out processor for e3 1231 v3 cause its cheaper and has relative performance. Should come in soon.
#10. Posted:
Dovashin
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UPDATE TIME BABY

Hello,

I completed the build in December and finally feel confident in showing it off. Cable management should be seen above in main post, its about the same besides the BS Sata power cables I had to dig out, but it all works. Specs:

* ASRock Z97 Micro ATX board
* i5 4690k OC'ed to 4.2ghz on stock cooler for now [Plan on fitting a cpu block and rad in, gotta do some more measurements]
* 120gig Kingston SSD which is main boot w/ windows 10 pro
* Formatted and refurbed my prebuilt HDD I got with the comp and made it a mass storage drive
* GTX 760
* 600Watt EVGA Bronze PSU
* Actually badass 12 gigs of DDR3-1600 from the prebuilt

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AND

In addition to this I found an old Macbook Pro 2009 that I thought I toasted yesterday. Well working some magic I actually managed to format my main partition [Wiped HDD, OS was corrupted I guess]. Reinstalled OSX and boom its a working laptop again, which is the tits.
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