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mac pro mod anodized painted g5modders whatthetech

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#101
WhatTheTech

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Nick - the original HDD sleds are available, but would cost me nearly $100. That and I didn't really pay attention to the disassembly means that I'm pretty disinclined to do it. Not that it isn't a GREAT idea that I would enjoy, but it's just not something I can afford right now :D

I was also asked about the motherboard heatsinks on Bit-Tech...wouldn't that mess with efficiency? I know that people have done it in the past, but I wouldn't know which paint to use and whether a gray was available for a specific paint type. Any ideas?

MINI UPDATE

Another small update - I finally decided to leave the DVD bezels the stock aluminum-silver, and re-mounted the whole mechanism. More than anything else, this is the most complicated and over-engineered part of the Mac Pro, but by Jehovah does it look sweet! After much fiddling I got both of them back in place. The top bezel sticks open for a second or two, but then the tension finally kicks in and puts it back into place - the bottom bezel opens and closes just fine. Here's a shot of the front - I decided to follow my own rules and cleared off a space close to my office window. The natural light doesn't alter the brightness of the anodizing, so finally I have a decent picture that shows just how dark this beast really is, enjoy:

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#102
Mr.D.

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I think that is a good choice with the color... there was always going to be a 'hole' there, the only question is do you accentuate it or minimize it. I like it...

...and by hole I mean a hole in the uniformity of the mesh.

#103
SirKeldon

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Regarding the heatsink fins, i won't paint them, as you mention, they will loose efficiency because of the heat transfer index of the paint.

And everytime i see your scheme ... i'm thinking in ... why not to paint it?

Edited by SirKeldon, 05 March 2013 - 07:30 PM.


#104
Baudouin

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Yes WTtech, leave the DVD bezels the stock aluminum-silver. The contrast amplify the beauty of the dark grey. :thumbsup_anim:

#105
WhatTheTech

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Yes WTtech, leave the DVD bezels the stock aluminum-silver. The contrast amplify the beauty of the dark grey. :thumbsup_anim:


Yep I'm decided :D

And not just because it's a pain to dismantle!!

#106
nickjf20

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Nick - the original HDD sleds are available, but would cost me nearly $100. That and I didn't really pay attention to the disassembly means that I'm pretty disinclined to do it. Not that it isn't a GREAT idea that I would enjoy, but it's just not something I can afford right now :D

Ouch! There's an american seller offering a whole case complete with HDDs and all the trays for £125 on ebay UK (+shipping mind you) http://www.ebay.co.u...=item2a29f4ba07
You could try asking them if they'd just do the HDD trays cheap(er)


Dear god, I've said this about 3 times, but I really really really want to anodise mine now :angel_not:


As for the paint, there was a guy on overclockers.co.uk who had an MSI Big Bang motherboard -- he removed the yellow lacquer (or vinyl) with paint stripper and then re-anodised them black if I remember correctly. I'm assuming you can do the same with yours -- as for painting the PCIe and RAM slots, I've seen it done but I wouldn't be able to bring myself to do it.

Edited by nickjf20, 05 March 2013 - 10:33 PM.


#107
WhatTheTech

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Thanks for the link - I think I will just keep my eye open for another eBay steal/see if anyone is parting one out on forums. I've kept all the fixtures to re-use them, so there's always the future!

Nope, definitely not going to paint the slots.

As far as the heatsinks go, maybe I'll bring them to the anodizing place and see if they are simply anodized (which I would assume for optimal thermal transfer) - if so, it would be a very easy and cheap job to get them made gray!


Dear god, I've said this about 3 times, but I really really really want to anodise mine now :angel_not:


HIGHLY recommended :D

#108
WhatTheTech

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Well, I got the hard-drive caddy mounted. It took a couple of tries to drill in the right spot (did I mention I never bother with measuring?) - but finally everything lined up and it's perfectly solid. I made sure to keep space on the right hand side for a second caddy if/when needed - now I just need to work out a way to get cables back there without making a mess :D

Posted Image


Optical drive cage has been ordered, which means a trip back to Anodizing Specialists is on the to-do list. Now to find that magical eBay bid for a broken Mac Pro PSU...

#109
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Nice Post!

just kidding...
was there earlier talk of doing something a bit more radical with the PSU, like putting it into an optical drive shell? I think your PSU is a bit too big for that, but I like the outside of the box (or maybe just inside a different box) thinking.

#110
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Not a shameless bump: I am now keeping an updated to-do list in the original post of upcoming modifications if anyone cares to follow along.

Side note: does anyone have experience with dual-color LEDs? The HDD caddies have LEDs that are a constant blue for power, with a pinkish-red to show activity. Preferably I would like to just replace them with white LEDs, but what do I do with the third cable? Can it be ignored? Thanks in advance!

#111
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dual color LEDs are wired one of two ways: three pins, with a + for each color and a common -, or two pins that you reverse the polarity for each color. sounds like you got the first kind. You should be fine just leaving that third wire alone.

Its interesting, because that is the less common of the two, at least as far as I have seen. Are you sure its not two separate LEDs? The only reason I ask is that most of the time, three pin LEDs are quite commonly tri-color LEDs.

#112
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dual color LEDs are wired one of two ways: three pins, with a + for each color and a common -, or two pins that you reverse the polarity for each color. sounds like you got the first kind. You should be fine just leaving that third wire alone.

Its interesting, because that is the less common of the two, at least as far as I have seen. Are you sure its not two separate LEDs? The only reason I ask is that most of the time, three pin LEDs are quite commonly tri-color LEDs.


Hmmm well it is heatshrinked (heatshrank? hetshrunk?) almost to the top, but it looks like there are only three leads which is why I thought dual-colour only. AFAIK middle is ground on most duals, so I just need to figure out which is the constant (blue) pole and ignore the third then. This is good news - I really don't like colored LEDs unless they are part of an obvious theme and they certainly are not in my case! I'm nervous about changing the LED in my 5770...I haven't even looked at it properly but I have a feeling it's not going to be something I want to attempt.

Honestly, I would love to have one of these XFX 7950GT video cards again. Silent, but was a BEAST at the time! The ONLY video card I purchased within a month of release. No fan. No LED. My kinda card.

#113
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Just a mini mid-week update: I put on my big boy pants and changed out the LED in the graphics card. Ok, so it doesn't seem like a big deal, but with no budget to replace anything if it all went south I was pretty nervous (modding vets - feel free to chuckle now).

First I took apart the plastic casing to take a look:

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The whole system had several different parts, all with clips and screws and other such nonsense. More on that later. I initially thought I was going to try and fit my white LED in the holder, so I sanded down the edges some:

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Next I tackled the little plastic part diffuser with the Sapphire decal. No chance of warranty with this kind of defacement:

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The above picture makes it look obviously sanded, but that's just the flash from my camera. It's super smooth and looks much better in person. Next I soldered in the white LED, using 1/16" heat shrink to make the connection nice and solid:

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I then grabbed my trusty glue gun, put aside all the tabs and screws, and put a nice big dollop on the LED. Since this should be the last time I ever have to take the thing apart, I'm not worried, and it's our little secret right? Finally, I plugged it in and to my great delight, it worked!

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It's not too bright (which was my intention), and has now reduced the blue lights in my case by 30%! I'm just glad everything works...crisis averted :D

Tomorrow my LED lighting strip arrives, and then fingers crossed that more parts come in soon! Thanks for watching!

#114
Ira Aduro

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coolio, glad it wasn't that bad, things normally seem worse when facing them head on and not bad looking back.

#115
Mr.D.

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Hmmm well it is heatshrinked (heatshrank? hetshrunk?) almost to the top, but it looks like there are only three leads which is why I thought dual-colour only. AFAIK middle is ground on most duals, so I just need to figure out which is the constant (blue) pole and ignore the third then. This is good news - I really don't like colored LEDs unless they are part of an obvious theme and they certainly are not in my case! I'm nervous about changing the LED in my 5770...I haven't even looked at it properly but I have a feeling it's not going to be something I want to attempt.

Honestly, I would love to have one of these XFX 7950GT video cards again. Silent, but was a BEAST at the time! The ONLY video card I purchased within a month of release. No fan. No LED. My kinda card.


yeah - sorry, forgot to mention center pin is (-) and then its just a matter of finding the right combo. single color LEDs have the flat spot to additionally indicate the negative or kathode (or cathode). The anode being the longer pin and being (+). I am not sure with dual or tri-colour LEDs if they have the flat spot.

not wanting LEDs that I didnt' choose is one of the reasons why I got a reference ATi 6770. Nice ATi branded case with no extra stuff. It also covers the entire GPU board so it has a nice clean look.

#116
Baudouin

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having no experience with mac pro cases, what is that rectangular hole in the bottom there for?


Posted ImagePosted Image
I found this pix of the Airport Extreme antenna which was located there

#117
WhatTheTech

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That's the one! I didn't think that whole thing was an antenna, but I guess so! I think this will be the new home for my DVD eject button and LED light strip switch (keeping it classy with white LEDs).

#118
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That's the one! I didn't think that whole thing was an antenna, but I guess so! I think this will be the new home for my DVD eject button and LED light strip switch (keeping it classy with white LEDs).


I remember someone did it, but I do not know who anymore.

#119
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So a small update, my optical cage and LED lighting came in, so I spent yesterday getting things installed. Here' the optical cage:

Posted Image

Still with the protective plastic on - just how I like it! I'll be anodizing two of these in the main gray color as soon as the other comes in :D I did have to cut the back of it because all of my cables are running back there and it wouldn't slide in properly:

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Oh well, guess I'm not having two DVD drives :) - one minor problem is that the DVD drive will eject just fine, but when it goes back in it gets stuck on something and immediately spits itself back out. I'm thinking some very minor modification to the DVD tray itself will be all I need - I will update later with a report!

I also got the LED lighting installed. I went for a very non-flashy white LED strip from Phobya, and am very pleased. Not only does it burn with the fire of a thousand suns, but it's just a nice plan white! Maybe I'll do colours next time...

I finally found a use for that bottom part (which I found out held a godzilla-sized wifi antenna) and installed the switch for my LED lighting. I'm pretty pleased with myself - the cables run on the inside of the door and are totally invisible! It may not seem like much to others, but for someone who is a cable-management freak, it's a small victory:

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Finally, here's a very quick shot of the lighting. My tripod is out of commission (one bent leg...no kidding) so excuse the quality:

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Oh, and I also got the power socket JB Welded into place, adapter to a right-angle power cable so that I can plug any PSU in that I want. No pics, but it's just one more step to a fully-completed mod!

As soon as parts get here, I'll be installing the custom front panel (USB 3.0) and getting the two top cages anodized. Thanks for all the feedback and views!!!

#120
Ira Aduro

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I love white LEDS, very classy and let's be honest, it's how apple would do it if they lit their cases. Good idea to put the LEDs hidden by the lip of the door area. It look like you might have enough space at the bottom of the case to do a glowing panel a la murder mod. At least for most of the flooring.





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