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Powermac G5 Case mod


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#1
gibsonc

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I finally decided to build my own mac, I have been a very happy Apple user since 2006 and I love Apples machines.
I needed a new machine as my ageing MacBook Pro 15" 2009 is not practical for storing my photos or carrying around everyday!
The MBP will be changed for an Air and as such I needed a new main desktop mac.
The iMacs are wonderful machines but haven't been updated with Ivy Bridge and the Mac Pro while a beautiful machine is way out of my price range!

So a G5 case mod it was!

This is the G5 i bought, it was a Dual 2.0Ghz 2004 system with a dead motherboard.

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I quickly gutted the machine and started cutting the back out!

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To make the cuts I used a coping saw and a small hack saw. The aluminium is really easy to cut through!

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The Olympic road cycle race was on, the iPad and BBC sport's website came in handy!

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Here is the back cut out for the Lian Li motherboard tray, I have decided to keep the original G5 stand offs and just drill holes to mount it internally.

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This is the Lian Li motherboard tray, its really very nice, it comes with standoffs and all necessary screws. It does come with a black piece of metal for the fan grill but I chose to replace this with a chrome grill which looks much better!

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This is the motherboard tray in place, its not secured down yet but gives you a good idea of what it will look like!

These are the parts that are going into the machine, I have 98% of them apart from my Wifi and Bluetooth and front I/O cable which I have ordered from BlackCH.

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Gigabyte Z77-DS3H
Intel Core i5 3570k OEM
8GB 1600Mhz Team Elite Memory
2x 1TB Hard Drives
OCZ Agility 3 60GB SSD
XFX Radeon HD 6850
OCZ ZT 550W PSU
Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro
Arctic Cooling F12 120mm case fan.

Hope you enjoyed the post, more updates as they come!

#2
Treegjansen

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Hi Gibsonc,

Nice start. A question. The screws that came wlth the lianli mb do they fit on the originall standoff of the case.
I am looking fot the tight type of screws for the original stand off

#3
gibsonc

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Hi Gibsonc,

Nice start. A question. The screws that came wlth the lianli mb do they fit on the originall standoff of the case.
I am looking fot the tight type of screws for the original stand off


Thanks,

The Lian Li tray does not come with screws to attach the tray to a case, only motherboard standoffs, screws to secure the motherboard to the standoffs and thumb screws for the pci slots.

I have used the screws that secured the G5's mobo to attach the tray to the G5's original standoffs :)

I hope this helps for now.
There will be a new update tomorrow about attaching the tray to the G5.

#4
imacdavey

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Update please.


#5
BrokenSkeleton

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Hi, I've just started a very similar mod. Very interested to see how you progress!

#6
gibsonc

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Ok sorry for the lack of updates I have been super busy getting this machine up and running!

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This is the top divider where the PSU sits on, I carefully marked out where the fan grill would be when the PSU was mounted and the began cutting! I am too mean to buy a dremel considering I would only use it for this project and then it would probably sit in the box never to be touched again, so it was all cut out by hand!

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Here is the top divider with the hole cut out, I am pretty pleased with the neatness of it considering it was done by hand with a coping saw! It won't be seen though and is covered up by the PSU's fan grill anyway!

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These are the thing you will need to extend the PSU's IEC connector to the outside of the case, I have not yet been able to do this due to my soldering iron being absolute rubbish! I may just get some crimp connectors to attach it to the IEC socket as it would be much easier! (Note, I bought these from a company called RS, they were super helpful have a great showroom and were much cheeper than if I bought them online!)

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Here is the motherboard tray mounted and you can see the PSU is mounted in there as well.
To attach the motherboard tray to the original G5 standoffs I first tried a paper template to map the location of the standoffs to the tray, this did not work.
I then had the idea to put some paint on the standoffs and then place the tray in position. This worked perfectly giving me the precise location of the holes and where to drill! No JB weld required!

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Motherboard in and looking good!

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i5 3570k! Very nice processor!

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Memory installed. The aluminium heat-sinks look like something apple would have designed themselves!

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Fans mounted onto the hard drive caddy with cable ties! Surprisingly it works really well, they are held in place strongly and I cant come up with a better solution that isn't as easy!

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Almost complete inside! (Note no graphics card installed, more on that later!)

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A quick shot of the G5 in place at my set up! It looks really good!

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My Geekbench score, (32bit mode) I am super happy with this! Its a great improvement on my MacBook Pro which gets around 3500!
http://browser.prima...ekbench2/916061


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And my Cinebench scores, I am really happy with the processors scores!

So to sum up the build it has been a great experience (my first proper computer build and case mod!)
I think it looks the parts and I am more than happy with the performance!
I have overclocked it to 3.8GHz which was so easy to do! Literally just change a number in the BIOS and it was done! I hope I can hit 4-4.2GHz when I have my new graphics card. It runs really quite cool averaging about 30 degrees under normal use (Youtube open, Facebook, iTunes etc..) and around 55 degrees under full load.

You may notice that I am using the Intel HD 4000 graphics, I did originally have a XFX Radeon HD 6850 however this has been sent back due to it being incompatible. Firstly there are major problems with getting the 6xxx series of cards to work with Mountain Lion and secondly I bought a ZCFC version which as far as I can tell wasn't compatible with Lion!
I will be replacing this with either a 550 TI if I get the ok that it is working properly under Mountain Lion with some software updates etc... or wait and get a 650.

I am still waiting for my front I/O cable to arrive so at the moment I am just using an old power button (its hanging out one of the PCI slots!).
I also have a WiFI card on its way so I don't have to share my MBP's connection via ethernet!

Anyway I hope you enjoyed my pictures and ramblings!
I am more than happy to answer any questions about the mod.

Thanks,
Chris

#7
imacdavey

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Beautiful job. You seem to have made the mod much simpler than others I've seen.

So, the PSU is in the old HD bay and the HD bay is on the bottom? That's different than others but I bet it keeps the interior cooler. How did you mount the HD caddy to the case? Is it just resting on the bottom or did you reuse some screws?

#8
gibsonc

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I have been doing some more testing of the Intel HD 4000 graphics using Unigine Heaven 3.0 , getting a score of 222 with an average FPS of 8FPS, and a maximum of 15.
Its not great but unless your not gaming it should do absolutely fine!
I was also very impressed that after running those benchmarks the CPU's temps did not go above 40 degrees!

Beautiful job. You seem to have made the mod much simpler than others I've seen.

So, the PSU is in the old HD bay and the HD bay is on the bottom? That's different than others but I bet it keeps the interior cooler. How did you mount the HD caddy to the case? Is it just resting on the bottom or did you reuse some screws?


Thank you, I tried to just go for simplicity for this mod! I see no reason to over complicate it!

R.e the HD caddy it was stuck to the bottom using some sticky pads. They are really bad though so don't do a good job of making it stay in place. Its not an issue though as it doesn't move around in there due to the fans holding it in.
I am also hesitant to properly stick it down as I would imagine it will be very hard to get a hard drive in if it is fixed in place!
I think for a more permanent solution I will get some strong velcro, that way it can be removed when I upgrade the hard drives.

The caddy was originally going to go under the optical drive however I drilled the holes in the wrong place and wasn't going to take the whole thing apart to rectify it so thats why the caddy ended up in the bottom. I think it works best though!

Placing the HD caddy in the bottom is much better for airflow, if hung from the DVD tray then you are blocking all the airflow to the graphics card and PSU.

Edited by gibsonc, 03 August 2012 - 05:43 PM.


#9
Samgrest1

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how were you able to install mountain lion straight to your hackintosh? didn't you need to install snow leopard through ###### first?

#10
gibsonc

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how were you able to install mountain lion straight to your hackintosh? didn't you need to install snow leopard through ###### first?


Nope, just downloaded mountain lion on my MacBook Pro and then put it on a memory stick that was bootable and installed it straight on :)

#11
topsub

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Does that company have an online store to buy the power iec connector you have to your PSU?

#12
gibsonc

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Does that company have an online store to buy the power iec connector you have to your PSU?


Yes they do http://uk.rs-online.com/web/ great company and I believe as long as you register you can get free shipping :)

#13
topsub

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Yes they do http://uk.rs-online.com/web/ great company and I believe as long as you register you can get free shipping :)


thanks! Do you happen to have a part number? I am trying to find it on there site but they have a lot of products.

#14
gibsonc

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thanks! Do you happen to have a part number? I am trying to find it on there site but they have a lot of products.


They do however I won't be able to give them to you until I'm back at home!

I think it may be this one http://uk.rs-online....=PSF_394578|alt

Although I am not 100% sure if it was, it looks right though!

#15
turboborked

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Nice and simple mod..this is the technique I am going to copy. Good work!

#16
Ira Aduro

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Wondering if you installed a graphics card yet? I came up with a similar solution to yours however I'm worried the PSU and GPU will fight over air if they are sucking in air from the same area. Maybe they wont.

#17
gibsonc

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Wondering if you installed a graphics card yet? I came up with a similar solution to yours however I'm worried the PSU and GPU will fight over air if they are sucking in air from the same area. Maybe they wont.


Hi sorry to bump this thread but I feel that I should reply! I have installed a Nvidia Geforce GTX 660 and both the PSU and GPU stay cool. The PSU never gives off much heat even when gaming and the GPU never goes about 70 degrees under full load which I feel is perfectly acceptable. If you need any pictures of it I will be more than happy to take some!

#18
Linnar8895

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I am doing a conversation too! Could you provide some more pictures of both the inside and outside of the case, I can't figure out how you mounted the backplate thingy because you did not have much material to fit screws in. Also wondering where you put the power supply cable. Thanks in advance and please apologize for my {censored} English. :P





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