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RETIRED MEMBER - PLEASE GO TO HTTPS://GRADIVIS.COM/PROJECTS TO SEE THIS WORK LOG!
 
 
001.jpg

 

The aim of this mod is to shake up the norm of aluminum-silver G5/Mac Pro mods by employing a darker theme for my Mac Pro. I want it to be clean and non-flashy, yet still have the gravitas to make people stop and take a second look.

 

TO DO LIST

This list is more for my personal benefit than anything, but will give you a good idea of what's to come!

- Install custom front panel with USB 3.0 connectivity (waiting for part)

- Install anodized DVD drive cage (waiting for part)

- Install panel-mount 3.5mm female jacks on the back of the case (waiting for parts)

- Possibly install panel-mount USB 3.0 ports with right-angle adapters (not sure if they will fit...)

- Improve PSU airflow by drilling holes/removing side of enclosure

- Install white LED light strip and inconspicuous power button for lighting (waiting for parts)

- Possibly replace GPU and HDD LEDs with white one (kinda leery of messing around with my only GPU!)

 

 

INTRO

Well, despite having Project Gravitas on pause due to hardware issues, I couldn't turn down an eBay auction for a poorly-described Mac Pro chassis, that was listed without pictures and simply titled "Apple Case". On a whim, I decided to take a chance (they had listed one part number for a Mac Pro fan, so I figured it might be a Mac Pro) - $30 and no other bids later, I had a PERFECT Mac Pro show up on my doorstep. Ebay win:

 

ebaywin_zpsc9b540fd.jpg

 

 

Despite being mostly empty, the case had only one small scratch on it, and the important parts like the front panel and shelf were included, so I had absolutely no reason to complain.

 

Here's a quick and dirty shot right out of the shipping box:

 

_MG_5840_zpsbfc77a8c.jpg

 

I knew that I wanted this mod to stand out. I'm always encouraged to see the sheer volume of G5/Mac Pro mods floating around various communities, and after being inspired by the Gunmetal G5 project from ToddFX on G5Modders (and contacting him to find out how much he paid for his anodizing), I decided to make some phone calls around town and see how much the cost of anodizing a Mac Pro would annoy my wife. She would undoubtedly (and not incorrectly) think that it was superfluous. Well, "superfluous" is not in the vocabulary of most modders, and I was delighted to hear back from "Anodizing Specialists" in Ohio that, yes, they would be interested in me coming down to talk things over. Delighted, I took a trip to the shop to talk with the VP of operations. Being an aluminum guy, I would like to think that he appreciated the hunk of his metal of choice almost as much as I do. Sitting in his office he pulled out some color samples, and I chose a dark gray. I had toyed around with black and even white, but this is to be my last computer case for a little while, and dark gray is my favorite color. After going over the case with magnets, he pointed out the parts that needed to be removed and told me to come on back when I had it disassembled. He very kindly gave me permission to photograph and document the process for informational purposes, which will be released in a forthcoming article on G5Modders.com, and of course will be included in this worklog.

 

 

DISASSEMBLY

Not having the same experience that I do with the G5, I decided to be overly-organized with my disassembly. Every part/area has its own bag, and in that goes any parts and related screws/fittings. It's annoying, but I'm sure I'll thank myself in the end! (Note: a lot of this full disassembly is applicable to the G5!)

 

_MG_0060_zps951a0ceb.jpg

 

The awesome modular drive bays that I won't be using:

 

_MG_0061_zpseb843144.jpg

 

This is perhaps the most intricate and difficult case that I have ever worked with, and that's including old server towers from the 90's! With this more than any other case, TOOLS ARE EVERYTHING. If you don't have the right tools, you're going to have a tough time doing things efficiently, and you'll probably end up cussing.

 

_MG_0069_zpsd27f45cc.jpg

 

(6mm socket)

(T8 Kobalt Bit)

 

Before picking up the tools above, I was close to giving up twice. "It's not worth it", I thought to myself on those occasions, "just do a regular mod". Once I buckled down and bought the tools, things were MUCH easier, if only slightly faster.

 

Our patient:

_MG_0059_zpsbc1f4c48.jpg

 

I'm going to hazard a guess that there are around 80 screws that you need to remove for full disassembly, although considering everything I had to take out, that could be an underestimate.

 

_MG_0063_zpsb26788fa.jpg

 

 

The above screws are the biggest pain the neck. Being so close to the bottom of the case, regular screwdriver handles are simply too big to have space for your knuckles to turn, and of course Apple uses that blue loctite stuff on all of their screws, so pliers just don't cut it most of the time.

 

Once I had removed all the screws (including the hidden ones…sigh) I carefully pulled apart the handles from the shell. Now I'm not sure if I did it correctly, but using some fabric in between the two parts, I pulled the handle assembly away from the shell, and slowly slid up out and over, taking care not to scratch anything! I don't have pictures of this step as it takes both hands, but I'm here to help if anyone needs guiding!

 

Here's half the beast, looking like a car door in a gangster flick, riddled with bullet holes:

 

_MG_5847_zps8fc91434.jpg

 

_MG_5848_zpsdb37b141.jpg

 

Here's a close up of the pesky screws that I mentioned earlier. Four would be fine, but 8+ on each side is just a pain:

 

_MG_5850_zps941400d7.jpg

 

After that, there were more screws to separate the two halves of the shell as well as some rivets that had to be drilled out, but that was relatively easy with much more space to work in! Still, look at these alternating rivets and security screws:

 

_MG_0072_zpsaaaa5d81.jpg

 

Steve Jobs meant it when he said he didn't want people rooting around inside Apple products. Finally I removed anything that was not made of aluminum, including all I/O plastic and EMI shields, and several screws and a few other bits and bobs here and there. Pics to come of the thing totally apart! Hopefully I'm dropping this case off to be anodized in the next few days, so we won't have to wait too long for a pic update. I'll have some mod plans drawn up soon as well. Thanks for watching!

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Can't wait to see the progress.

And that has been an awesome deal for that case.

 

You should have seen me when the eBay listing was ending - sitting there very nervous hoping no one else found it, ready to bid up to $100!!

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Yeah that is an AMAZING deal. Jealous. So, since you are going for a darker color scheme, you should totally make some backlit apple logos for the side. Similar to apple laptops!

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So, since you are going for a darker color scheme, you should totally make some backlit apple logos for the side. Similar to apple laptops!

 

If I knew how to do it well, I would, but honestly the Mac Pro case is in such good condition that I wouldn't dare! Still, I have three G5 cases sitting around so maybe for the next mod... :)

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probably could take the apple logos from a G4 (they might be smaller) cut out the appropriate size shape (leaving a small lip to glue logo onto) and then backlight with LEDs. Or maybe just cut out the apple logos and make new logos from frosted plexiglass and backlight. Someone on here did something like that but with black plexiglass and not backlit. But yeah that is a very nice condition case...

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probably could take the apple logos from a G4 (they might be smaller) cut out the appropriate size shape (leaving a small lip to glue logo onto) and then backlight with LEDs. Or maybe just cut out the apple logos and make new logos from frosted plexiglass and backlight. Someone on here did something like that but with black plexiglass and not backlit. But yeah that is a very nice condition case...

 

I think I will leave that to the more skilled. I'm going to be very honest and say that I HATE cutting metal. I have all the tools, but it's my least favorite part about modding...a little ironic, but the truth :D

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probably could take the apple logos from a G4 (they might be smaller) cut out the appropriate size shape (leaving a small lip to glue logo onto) and then backlight with LEDs. Or maybe just cut out the apple logos and make new logos from frosted plexiglass and backlight. Someone on here did something like that but with black plexiglass and not backlit. But yeah that is a very nice condition case...

 

I did it but inside the case, first on a plexiglass and then changed for a G5 case door cut at the shape of the opening and backlight in 3D.

plexiglass unlighted plexiglass lighted (5 leds)

img5410hx8.jpgimg5414je3.jpg

 

1) unlighted without door 2) lighted with door (7 leds)

1202131921.jpg20121223162141.jpg

 

Btw, nice job WhatThech, it's a hard work and a lot of patience. Remind me when I separate the inner and outer parts of a MacPro case with feet badly bended and put together the Inner part inside an outer part of a G5 case.

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Btw, nice job WhatThech, it's a hard work and a lot of patience. Remind me when I separate the inner and outer parts of a MacPro case with feet badly bended and put together the Inner part inside an outer part of a G5 case.

 

Thanks so much! It is a lot of hard work, but I know it will be worth it. I think I will be doing a video tutorial on a spare G5 that I have, but I may need to recover first from putting it back together first! ;)

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SO my question is about the motherboard. I am gonna take a wild guess here and say that the MacPro motherboard is just as wacked out as the G5 motherboard and conforms to no standards - correct?

 

Are you going to remove the binding posts that are there now? If yes, will you relocate them? If so how will you affix them?

Using a MB tray instead? Will you be anodizing that as well? Which tray?

 

I imagine that this is all in the a fore mentioned "plans" that you are drawing up so if I'm jumping the gun, just tell me to hold my horses! I am always curious how people mount the new stuff in the old and I can usually get some good ideas for future reference from others ideas.

 

Keep up the posts!

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SO my question is about the motherboard. I am gonna take a wild guess here and say that the MacPro motherboard is just as wacked out as the G5 motherboard and conforms to no standards - correct?

 

Are you going to remove the binding posts that are there now? If yes, will you relocate them? If so how will you affix them?

Using a MB tray instead? Will you be anodizing that as well? Which tray?

 

I imagine that this is all in the a fore mentioned "plans" that you are drawing up so if I'm jumping the gun, just tell me to hold my horses! I am always curious how people mount the new stuff in the old and I can usually get some good ideas for future reference from others ideas.

 

Keep up the posts!

 

Great questions!

 

Motherboard and tray:

You are absolutely right - the Mac Pro is equally as "wacked out" as the G5 in the non-standard layout. Since I had one on hand, I am going to be using the motherboard tray from my LianLi PC-V353 to mount the mobo in the Mac Pro. As you can kind of see from the image below, it's all one piece, but doesn't have any fan mounting:

 

ScreenShot2013-02-17at112445PM_zpsca710cda.png

 

I think I will cut into the back panel to allow for the original Mac Pro fan and mount to be used, but I'm not entirely sure just yet. It will definitely be anodized - I have already removed the rivets and it's disassembled and ready for the shop to dip it! I probably should cut it before I have it anodized - I forgot I had another dentist appointment tomorrow, so anodizing will have to wait until later in the week. This gives me a little bit more time to measure and cut. As I mentioned earlier, I really don't enjoy cutting metal, but I can't put it off much longer! I guess I'll have a motherboard tray update tomorrow once the anesthetic wears off!

 

In very rough terms, this is what I'm talking about:

 

macprorear_zps1111b422.jpg

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*scoffs* just happen to have this lan li tray lying around... right under the three G5s and the two nearly working Porsche 959s that just happen to be in my garage! I kid! I kid!

 

I actually like the idea of cutting the back of the tray to fit the existing fan hole, rather than the other way around - less cutting of the original case, and keeps the case more original.

 

So one more question - not gonna try to adapt the original hot swap stuff for your new HDDs? I have no idea about any of that as I have never even seen the inside of a MacPro, so I don't know the logistics of all that - but surely there is some kind of system that can at least reuse the location if nothing else - I always thought that was a good place... all in a row and mostly outta the way.

 

OK - I lied - one more question - does the MacPro have that clear plastic shield liek the G5 does? If yes, are you goingto reuse it? what is the shape of that?

 

Sorry for the barrage of questions - this will most likely be my next mod, so I have lots of questions...

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*scoffs* just happen to have this lan li tray lying around... right under the three G5s and the two nearly working Porsche 959s that just happen to be in my garage! I kid! I kid!

 

I actually like the idea of cutting the back of the tray to fit the existing fan hole, rather than the other way around - less cutting of the original case, and keeps the case more original.

 

So one more question - not gonna try to adapt the original hot swap stuff for your new HDDs? I have no idea about any of that as I have never even seen the inside of a MacPro, so I don't know the logistics of all that - but surely there is some kind of system that can at least reuse the location if nothing else - I always thought that was a good place... all in a row and mostly outta the way.

 

OK - I lied - one more question - does the MacPro have that clear plastic shield liek the G5 does? If yes, are you goingto reuse it? what is the shape of that?

 

Sorry for the barrage of questions - this will most likely be my next mod, so I have lots of questions...

 

Questions are always welcome! If you saw the condition of my other two G5s, there would be less scoffing! Their condition means that they're going to be used for a (potential) video tutorial on totally disassembling the case...

 

I've always liked the stock fan grills, and really want to keep it if I can. I actually just took a look at the Lian Li tray, and the area I would have to cut for the fan is (was) attached via rivets, so actually I'm left with this:

 

mobotray_zps38ad6526.jpg

 

If my measurements are correct, I think I can just about fit it by removing the original PCI brackets and cutting the original I/O area. I may have to include part of the outer aluminum (the part I was going to cut in the image in my other post), simply because the Mac Pro has one more PCI slot than my Lian Li tray. Fingers crossed!

 

For the HDDs, I would LOVE to use the original system which is very VERY nice, but my case did not come with the HDD sleds (the four trays you see on a stock Mac Pro). They are pretty expensive to get individually (well, multiplied by four anyway), so I just thought "forget it" and decided to go an alternate route. I'm throwing around a few ideas, but the one I like most is using a 2.5" HDD cage (like this) and either putting it under the optical drive (as in where the second DVD drive normally is) or attaching it underneath the top shelf where the hard-drives traditionally go. That's probably not the cage I will go with - it really depends on what looks the best/can be easily modified vs. what I can afford when that time comes. In the mean time, I sold two of my 3.5" hard-drives and purchased a couple of 2.5" storage drives instead to go along with my SSD which will be the OS drive.

 

Finally, I don't believe that the Mac Pro has a plastic baffle. Instead they opted to have outer shields that direct the air flow in much the same way, albeit with a little more aluminum style.

 

Enjoying the feedback and questions very much!

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interesting with the shield (or two shields) at the front and the one over the CPUs. I always liked the G5 method because if you want to have a window on the side of your G5, you just take the side panel off and the clear plastic keeps the airflow going over the important stuff.

 

That HDD caddy looks pretty sweet - especially if you are going to all 2.5" drives. Since you should have quite a bit of room in there, it'll fit pretty easily. Bummer about not coming with that sled stuff - but for 30 bucks, ya cant beat what ya got eh?

 

Definitely a lot more aluminum extras in the MacPro. How much of that extra stuff did the rig come with? and if it came with any - I'm gonna take a WAG and say you are anodizing them too?

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The rosewill 2x2.5" hotswap bays can be fully disassembled leaving just the sata backplane connector.Making your own hd sled is pretty straightforward though knowing how the bays are it would be easier to have the sled below the hd and curving up instead of how apple has it above and curving down.

 

Here are a few photos of the backplane.

post-831025-0-84260100-1361188487_thumb.jpg

post-831025-0-42630700-1361188508_thumb.jpg

post-831025-0-83574200-1361188567_thumb.jpg

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The rosewill 2x2.5" hotswap bays can be fully disassembled leaving just the sata backplane connector.Making your own hd sled is pretty straightforward though knowing how the bays are it would be easier to have the sled below the hd and curving up instead of how apple has it above and curving down.

 

Thanks for the link! What I might do, is buy two of those and rather than disassemble them, place them as-is in the HD area under the tray rather than under the optical drive...

 

I'm not too worried about keeping the stock layout to be honest - the only thing I REALLY want is the PSU cover which is hard to come by seeing as it was part of the PSU itself!

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The more I look at things, the more I want to cut as little as possible. Below are some plans for the rear cuts. Basically I am doing with my Lian Li tray what The Laser Hive products do; keeping the original PCI brackets. If all works out, this will allow me to keep the stock fan grill and the sturdy PCI brackets...here's to hoping!

 

cuts_zpsaa553776.jpg

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CUTTING THE TRAY

 

Well, a small update. I cut the Lian Li motherboard tray which already had space for the PCI brackets so that it would be close enough to the back of the Mac Pro case to use the stock PCI brackets.

 

_MG_0075_zps077877d6.jpg

 

If you don't have to make small cuts, the EZ-lock metal cutting discs are by far the easiest way to go.

 

_MG_0078_zpsda1814e7.jpg

 

Le cut:

 

_MG_0079_zps6f1c545e.jpg

 

It only took me about 45 seconds to get here:

 

_MG_0080_zpsbeba9622.jpg

 

Not perfectly straight, but with a little bit of filing it will definitely do!

 

_MG_0082_zps1e216093.jpg

 

My only concern with the motherboard tray is that it raises everything up by about 5mm, which I believe is around the height of the original motherboard. This means that if I use regular motherboard standoffs on top of the tray for the mobo, it will be too high to use the PCI brackets comfortably.

 

diagram1_zpsb10b596a.jpg

 

Now on my first ever G5 mod, I combatted this by using standoffs on the PCI bracket itself so that my video card was screwed into a standoff, that was in turn screwed in to the PCI bracket, but that was a quick and dirty fix that is far from ideal aesthetically speaking. What I might do this time is cut an insulating sheet of plastic to size, and then screw the motherboard directly to the tray without any standoffs, removing the extra unwanted height. If I use the proper type of plastic does anyone know of any objections to doing this? I saw someone do this with an all-wood custom case, so I'm guessing conductivity (and the resulting shorting out of components) is the only concern here?

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metal, plastic, whatever... as long as you line it up with the holes, you're fine. Don't forget the original G5, and most other original systems, have metal binding posts... this, in theory, helps to ground the case with the motherboard. Totally not necessary as the ground will be carried thru the 24pin ATX cable back to the PSU. I found a post somewhere (have no idea where now of course) where somebody used the hexagonal clear Bic pen shells as standoffs. I even went so far as to buy a pack and test it out. I came to the conclusion that I would just reuse the original G5 standoffs. This might be a time where you could use that trick since you have height issues using an additional motherboard tray.

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It seems like only yesterday you started this, and you've already got a pretty good start. I almost went with a Mac Pro case before I found the G5, so this mod is really interesting to me.

 

Edit: It WAS only yesterday...

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It seems like only yesterday you started this, and you've already got a pretty good start. I almost went with a Mac Pro case before I found the G5, so this mod is really interesting to me.

 

Edit: It WAS only yesterday...

 

LOL. Well, I only started posting yesterday but I worked a few hours here and there over the past few days on dismantling. Just ask SirKeldon - he was encouraging me via Skype to NOT give up :D

 

The Mac Pro is at the same time very familiar (coming from G5 experience) but also quite a different beast. I'm also learning that a full dismantle is about as involved you can get. Despite hating some of the screw placements, I am really understanding the detail and craftsmanship that went in to this case, and from a more informed position than simply modding the backside. Some might argue that the case is over-engineered, but in my mind it was done with excellence.

 

Thanks for following! I'm waiting to hear back from David from The Laser Hive for his professional advice regarding the backplate before I make any cuts. More updates soon no doubt!

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THE REAR FAN

 

Well, in the hopes that I can save the original fan grill, I decided to get started and hope for the best. The Mac Pro has a processor cage with the fan attached, so the grill doesn't have holes for mounting a standard fan.

 

_MG_5882_zps36a97d88.jpg

 

So, using my very scientific method of an overly sharpened pencil and a 120mm fan, I made the marks for the mounting holes:

 

_MG_5884_zps1f380f5b.jpg

 

I started at with a small bit to make the pilot holes, assuming that the thing was solid metal. Nope. Plastic underneath! So I pulled out the right sized bit and made four holes:

 

_MG_5885_zpsca7e46b9.jpg

 

I wasn't too worried about the size once I found out there was plastic underneath. By keeping it a little small, I figured (correctly) that the fan screw would make their own threads. Here's the final product, with some nifty dark grey screws that I found in my toolbox:

 

_MG_5886_zps5d93c857.jpg

 

Now, as you can see from the following picture, I drilled the holes off center. There's a not-so-small possibility that I will have to remove part of the inner grill for motherboard clearance, and if that's the case, I don't want to have to drill again!

 

_MG_5887_zps8e75fc54.jpg

 

Now just keep your fingers crossed that I won't have to cut the fan grill! It's so purty the way it is....

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motherboard clearance being all the stuff in the back I/O area on the MB I'm guessing? This is what is so far preventing me from installing the stock rear fans back into my G5. I don't need them for cooling, but it'd be nice to get those back in for originality sake.

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motherboard clearance being all the stuff in the back I/O area on the MB I'm guessing? This is what is so far preventing me from installing the stock rear fans back into my G5. I don't need them for cooling, but it'd be nice to get those back in for originality sake.

 

Yep, that's what I'm concerned about. Best case scenario, there's a mm or two - worst case scenario I shave off some of the interior fan grill and put some plastic to insulate from shorts. I know that SirKeldon kept his (you can find it on his gallery here) so it's definitely possible for the G5!

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      Then I applied every individual operation to all cases, one after another.
       
      This raised the quality of all cases.
       

      The metalwork (Filing, sanding, equalizing, gluing and painting) took a very long time. I don’t even know how many hours it took per case because I always did one individual operation to all cases (e.g. filing or cutting) and then started the next task. It probably took a couple of days per G5.
      Then I broke my shoulder in May 2017 (doing something stupid on an Austrian glacier). That made it harder to do the sanding for a couple of weeks.
      But even though it was painful, I couldn’t stop...
       

       
       
       
      The different case-types:
       
       
      The painting turned out very well.
       
      I chose the best 14 cases after painting and decided to finish modding them, completely.
      I will call these “Barebones” in the following.
      In the pyramid-pictures they are always on top, because they were finished last and taken to the workshop more often.
       
      The 14 best cases got equipped with a 600W PSU, front-panel, water-cooling (for the mATX Barebones), apple power-cables, etc…
       
      They are now proper Barebones. No more hard work needed to finish the build.
      Just missing a motherboard (and maybe hard drives) - and done.
       

      12 other cases did not end up perfectly painted, but still good. Some orange peel here and there. Only 4 of them have stronger orange peel. I will call these 12 cases “Empty Ones” in the following.
       

      An “empty case”
       
      What to do with the “Empty Ones”?
      They are also clean and modded. Ready for ATX or mATX boards, empty PSU-Enclosure…
      One could make furniture or art out of them…
      One could finish the mod with a new front panel.
      Or one could paint them again in a different colour…
      I don’t know…
       
       
       
      Let’s start from the beginning:
       
       
      Delivery: first we sorted the cases from “good condition” to “scratched and scuffed”
      This sorting turned out to be useless, later as I ended up sanding, filling and painting all of them. I chose the best ones in the end.
       

      We disassembled everything and sorted the parts – plastics, aluminium, batteries, electronics, etc… then gave everything to recycling. I am an environmental engineer, so this was important to me. I gave away all parts that could possibly be reused - Like fans, RAM and graphics cards.
      There are no pictures of the disassembly, because it has been done by many people already and we were also too busy (it took a couple of days).
      We ended up making our own tools and screwdrivers for removing the processors and mainboards, because many screws are hard to reach.
       
      All parts that I wanted to keep were cleaned and kept separately. E.g. the fan grilles on the back, the rubber screws for the HDD Caddy or the DVD-drive stand-offs
       
       
       
      Planning & Conversion
       
      Then I made a plan for the easiest ATX conversion with the least cutting.
      Best thing to do: Cut an opening to the back - big enough for ATX boards I/O and reuse the original PCIe slots for graphics cards. This turned out to be just perfect. I tested different boards. E.g.: ASUS TUF X99 (ATX) and ASrock AB350M (mATX)
       
       

      Night shift – working with the Dremel
       

      First cut for the ATX Mainboard I/O.
      All the Internals are removed. Also, the fan grille with its many mini-screws. So that the plastic is not melting.
       

      Cut-out (before filing and sanding). Sharp edges. Straight cut of the long sides thanks to the big angle grinder. Shorter sides were done with the Dremel for precision towards the edges.
      Then the filing and sanding removed all sharp edges.
       

      I removed all the Motherboard standoffs from the inside, cleaned the surface with Isopropyl alcohol and glued the standoffs in the new places for ATX Boards using the 2K Aluminium Epoxy. This took a lot of measure to fit a mainboard in the right position for the PCIe-Slots. I bought test-boards that were placed in the empty case with a graphics card plugged in and then the screwholes werde marked on the stencils.
       

      I made two different stencils. One for ATX Boards and one for mATX Boards:
       

      Putting the standoff through the stencil and securing it with a screw
       

      Cleaning the surface before gluing.

      Both stencils with standoffs and fresh glue – right before placing it in the cases
       

      ATX stencil in the case – gluing down the standoffs.
       

      mATX stencil while gluing. It had to sit like this over night to make sure the glue is hard.
       
      Then, the stencil was taken out. There is no tray necessary under the mainboard. All stand-offs / threads are in the right position for standart mainboards, now.
       

      Now that all the disassembly, cutting and gluing was done it was time for some fresh paint.
       
       
       
      The painting:
       
      Before painting it was necessary to fill dents, file edges (there were chips, especially on the feet) and sand EVERYTHING to smoothen the surface and remove unwanted oils.
      Fill, file, sand, repeat…
      I used 2K Aluminium epoxy to fill dents

       

      The Epoxy is like a cold weld. Hard and sturdy.
       

      Dents before filling
       

      Dents after filling - before sanding
       

      More filling
       

      Filled and sanded case.
       

      At first I did not want to paint them myself.
      So I bought the right 2K-Aluminium-paint (had to try different ones to find the perfect colour and shade) and handed four cases with the paint over to a professional paint shop (arm-industry - specialized on parts for tanks).
      They were happy to try this because they wanted to train their varnisher-apprentices on something that is more difficult than the usual tank-parts.
       
       

      The results were good, but It turned out that these cases are really hard to paint…
       
      I was not 100% happy with the result. They returned from the paint-shop with some varnish-runs on the bottom of the cases. They also missed some spots that were hard to reach.
      So, I changed my mind and decided to paint all the cases, myself (again...)
      What a fool I was.
      This took a week.
       
      First of all, I needed a cleanroom.
      So, I converted a shed in my parents’ garden.
       

      Shed / Cleanroom – Winter-time
       

      Thanks to my brothers’ help, the setup turned out really clean and airtight. Crucial for keeping it warm.
       

      To keep the shed warm, I used a big oven and additional electric heaters. My father even set up a big chimney, so that the smoke was led further away from the shed (as smoke=small particles that would  leave  marks on the fresh paint).
       

      I had a compressor on hand (with 30m hose) and used a spray-gun for coating the cases with Aluminium-paint. We used the spray-gun for car parts before.
       

      Paint-Shed from the inside
       

      Hanging case before spray-painting
       

      Usually two or three cases were sprayed at a time.
      All cases were sprayed at least two times with thin coats.
       

      After spray-painting it was time for drying
       

      The freshly sprayed cases were put in a sauna at roughly 80 degrees Celsius. That sped up the hardening and caked the varnish in.
       
       
      The fully varnished cases after drying. This is the result:
       
       

       

       

       

       
       

      The cases with the white bar on the back have the original Apple 2x2 Wifi / Bluetooth antennas in them (with two plugs) I installed a second 2x2 Antenna. Now they are 4x4.
      The (IPEX? MHF?) connectors are bigger than those I have seen before. They don’t fit the tiny connectors on laptop-wifi-cards.
      Maybe someone used the Apple Antennas with a PCIe Wifi-card before and can give me a tip or even post a link?
       

       

       

       
       
       
      The “Empty Ones”:
       
      This is what the 12 empty cases look like, that have some orange-peel skin:
       

      Basicaly the underside of ALL cases looks like this - because they were placed on their feet for drying or Spraying. You will never see this when the case is standing on its feet.
       

      An “empty-one” - ready for ATX boards.
       

      Empty PSU-Enclosure is installed. Fan-bracket is in place. Sometimes still with apple fans.
       

      A finished ”empty” mATX case
       

      You can see some orange-peel skin or varnish-runs on the “Empty Ones”
       
       
       
      I modded the 12 best-painted cases to create fully-modded Barebones:
       
      Time for re-assembly:
       
       
       
      Fan-Bracket:
       

      The Apple-fans were removed from the fan bracket. They were loud and needed re-wiring anyways. It is recommended to put more modern fans in there. I renewed the rubber-fixings where necessary. You do not need screws to put fans in. They are held in and decoupled by the rubber. Vibration is not passed on to the case.
       

      I put the PCIe slot brackets back in (they were also painted, of course) using the rubber-headed HDD screws from other cases. In case you want to add more HDDs you have the right screws at hand.
       

      The fan-bracket fits in its original position. That works fine for most Mainboards. If you have a Mainboard with very high VRM heatsinks or high I/O (e.g. with 6 stacked USB-Ports) you can either remove the fan bracket completely (I did that for my brothers build and just clamped some BeQuiet! Silent-Wings 2 - 92mm in) or move the bracket up a bit - by not inserting the hooks under the lip, but rather clamping the bracket above the lip (I did that for the Ryzentosh, it is also very stable).
       

      The bracket holds two 92mm x 25mm Fans
      My favourite: Noctua NF-B9 redux-1600 PWM - 92mm
      They look like the original ones and are very quiet. (I used them in two projects)
       

      Cheaper Arctic PWM Fans for testing
       
       
       
      Front-Panel:
       
       

      The Power-Buttons needed to be painted, as well. Over time they lost some of their thin chrome coating due to touching. The 2-K varnish is thicker and will be much more durable.
       

      Secured the power-buttons down using double-sided tape during varnishing
       

      To make them fit perfectly again, I needed to scrape of excess paint from the sides. The buttons would easily get stuck otherwise.
       

      The case without any front-panel board or power-button.
       
      Half of the G5s I bought were “late 2005” models. The front-panel-boards of all G5s have the same size and fit in all the cases.
      Only models before “late 2005” have a front panel connector-socket. So, I had 14 front-panels that could be used with BlackCH-Mods-cables, and 14 perfectly painted cases. That’s a match.
       

      Re-installing the power-button board with its securing ring. This took a long time because every button had to be re-adjusted to work nicely again.
      Also notice the rubber piece on the right-hand side. This is needed to support the front-panel board when plugging in the cable to the connector:
       

      Installation of the front-panel board.
       

      The housing of the front-panel board has also been painted.
       

      The custom-made front-panel cable by BlackCH Mods. They were not cheap but they work.
      I marked all the connectors on one of the cables to make them easier to identify.
      Audio works perfectly even though there is a proprietary sensing pin on apples board. I recommend to set the front-panel type to “AC’97” in the BIOS / UEFI instead of the default “HD Audio”. That way the front panel audio is basically ON all the time and you can choose other outputs from the task-bar. I used Realtek drivers for Windows in my last two builds.  For a Hackintosh you would need to follow BlackCH Mods manual or ask the community about the best settings.
       

      Plugging in the mod-cable to the front-panel connector.
       

      Securing the plug with the black cap. It is pushed down even further than shown in the picture – so it clipped on to the board itself to give the connector more pressure and therefore stability.
       
       
       
      DVD / Blu-Ray drive:
       
       

      Eject the disc tray with a  paper clip.
       

      Unclip the front-plate, so it does not get stuck in the auto-opening Apple-aperture
       

      Screw in the stand-off screws (I saved those)
       

      Standoffs installed
       

      Finally, slide the drive into the mounting-bracket and close the two little retention arms. Done.
       
       
       
      PSU (Power Supply Unit):
       
       
      I thought a long time about the perfect PSU.
      I really wanted to re-use the original PSU-housing, because of the clever placement in the case. It sits flush with the mainboard at the bottom and the original power- socket is a MUST to reuse for aesthetics and stability.
       

      The original Apple power-plug with Apple power-cable.
       
      How do you get a new PSU into the original Apple PSU?
      I did not want to crack open a standart ATX PSU and jerry-rig its sensible (and dangerous) electronics into the original PSU-housing.
      So, I looked for a server-PSU that would fit inside the original housing completely with own housing and fan. Safe and sound.
      Not an easy task setting those up, because server PSUs often have proprietary connectors.
       
      Also, I wanted 600 Watts of output power to drive any overclocked CPU with a powerful graphics card like the GTX 1080Ti.
       

      Soldering on the new -internal- power-cable to the original power-socket in the Apple PSU housing.
       

      Shrink-tube protects the soldered joints.
       
      The cable will be connected to the new PSU inside. As an extension.
      The input-filter is still connected to the socket.
       

      The Apple power-cord.
       
       
      I found the perfect PSU.
      A 600W PSU by Supermicro.
       
      Supermicro is a very known brand in the professional server market. So, I can trust those PSUs to constantly deliver real 600Watts. They are designed to run under full load for years. Hence, they can be really expensive.
      Many cheap PSUs just claim to be 600W but struggle to hold that power up for longer periods of time (or they degrade). This will not happen with a Supermicro PSU.
       
      The 600W PSU comes with a 80+ Platinum rating.
      That is one of the highest Energy efficiency ratings available.
      Higher than 80+ Gold, Silver or Bronze (which is kind of the standard right now)
       
      80+ Platinum means 92-94% of the Input-power is delivered as output. Only 6-8% is transformed into heat. That was important to me in order to keep the PSU quiet.
       

      All PSUs before they were put in
       

      It has the 1U form factor. So, you could actually fit two of them in the housing.
       

      The 600W PSU plugged into the extension cord.
       

      Securing the PSU in place
       

      The 2005 Powermac Models have a bigger server power-plug (C19) suitable for higher power delivery of over 1000 Watts.
      Almost half of the cases have this kind of plug.
      They also have a bigger input filter.
       

      Soldering the extension on.
       

      Finished housing with server power jack (C19) on the outside and standart plug (C13) on the inside
       

      PSU inside the original Apple-Housing
       

      All the cables come out near the back of the case.
       

      I created bigger openings for the cables to feed through.
       

      All PSUs are prepared
       

      The PSUs and their connectors have been tested with a PSU-tester.
       
      These Server PSUs still have some proprietary connectors (and some cables, that are a bit shorter than usual), So, I bought different adapter-cables and extensions for the PSUs to make everything universal.
       
       
       
      PSU-Cables:
       
       
      - PCIe 8-Pin (2x) for graphics cards (over CPU 8-Pin adapter)
      - CPU (1x 8-Pin, 1x 4-Pin) – actually there is one more 8-Pin, but it is occupied by the PCIe-adapter. So, it is possible to do a dual-CPU setup with a small graphics-card, that does not need a dedicated power plug, as well.
      - Molex (2x) (6x over SATA-Adapter)
      - SATA (5x) (over Molex adapter), black sleeved
      - 24-Pin ATX (20 Pin is possible) + Extension (black) + Dual PSU connector
      - 12V Fan (4x over Molex Adapter), black sleeved
       

      Different types of cables and adapters (in an mATX Case)
       
      You can hide most cables behind the PSU-housing and under the mainboard, as the standoffs that hold the mainboard are quite high. That is the biggest benefit over using one of those tray-adapter-plates that would use up the space behind the mainboard.
       

      The cables in an ATX Case (not hidden / cable-managed)
       
       
       
      HDD-Caddy:
       

      The original Apple 2-Bay HDD-caddy was glued into its new place to be out of the way. Only necessary in the ATX-Cases to fit the bigger ATX Boards in. Using high-temperature silicone.
       

      Molex Power provided by adapter (if needed for 3,5” drives, most new 5400 rpm HDDs don’t even need Molex anymore)
       

      ATX Case with a bit of cable management and the HDD-caddy in place
       
       
       
      Finished ATX Barebones:
       
       

      Finished ATX case with all equipment and the server power-cord
       

      Finished ATX case with the Acrylic cover
       

      Different finished ATX Case with cover and cable management
       
       
       
      Watercooling (mATX Barebones):
       
       
      Now that the “Empty Ones” and the ATX Barebones were finished It was time to mod the mATX Cases.
       
      I added watercooling to the mATX-Barebones:
       

      Best place for the radiator is the front. Here it will blow the hot air directly out of the case.
       

      This is the 240mm radiator for the watercooling of all mATX cases
       

      To decouple the vibration of the loop from the case I used a foam seal on the front of the radiator and a thick silicone-seal on the sides and the top
       

      Gluing the radiator in with special high-temperature silicone. (This Silicone is usually used to attach the IHS to a CPU or to seal an exhaust pipe) – good for temperatures up to 329°C
       

      Radiator in Place. Thick silicone seal is decoupling the vibration of the water-pump that travels through the loop.
       

      The 240mm radiator fits right in between the PSU and the top-compartment.
       
      The mounting kits for this Cooler Master AiO support all modern processors and sockets (775, 1150, 1151, 1155, 1156, 1366, 2011, 2011-3, 2066, AM2, AM2+, AM3, AM3+, AM4, FM1, FM2, FM2+)
       

      Two 120mm high static pressure fans come with the watercooling loop. They blow out.
      You could of course turn the fans around to suck air in (positive pressure).
       
       
       
      Equipment:
       
       
      I saved the important bits and bought cables for all Barebones
       

      Every fully modded Barebone has its own new power-cable (half of them white apple cables, half of them black OEM server cables)
       
      All fully modded Barebones have the acrylic cover
       
      I kept HDD rubber-head screws, DVD-drive standoffs, Pump Mounting Kits in a little bag.
       
       
       
      Finished mATX Barebones with watercooling:
       
       
      Here are some pictures of the internal layout:
      Pictures of the outside can be seen in previous posts.
       

      Finished mATX Barebone
       

      Finished mATX Barebone with all equipment
       

      Finished mATX Barebone with all equipment
       
       
       
      Types of cases & Barebones:
       
       
      What I have right now:
       
      12 fully modded Barebones:
      6 - mATX - with watercooling
      6 - ATX - (eATX boards should also fit)
       
      12 “Empty Ones”
      - 8 prepared for ATX (3 of which have heavier orange-peel)
      - 3 prepared for mATX (1 of which has heavier orange-peel)
       
       
       
      The End:
       
       
      Thats it for now…
      What do you think?
      Was it worth it?
      What hardware would you put in?
      Please let me know…
      ;-)
       
       
      Yours, sincerely
      wise_rice
    • By ITzTravelInTime
      This driver is a mod of the popular kx audio driver for mac os x, the project goal is to still maintaining it for the future releases of mac os and to include as much cards as possible and to get all the features of the cards to work.
       
      Currently the only features not supported are audio inputs and integrated midi and synth capabilitues of the cards, and some minor things like creative remote controllers or software controlled volume gears on creative external drives and bays)
       
      It supports most the sound blaster live! series cards, the sound blaster PCI 512, most of the audigy (emu 10k2 based) series, audigy 1, audigy 2, audigy 2 zs, audigy 4 (SB0610), audigy 4 pro, audigy 5 and audigy rx (sb1550) and some e-mu edsp audio cards with all the recent versions of mac os, tested to work with mac os yosemite, el capitan, sierra and high sierra on intel based machines from socket 775 to 1151 (including enthusiast platforms like x58, x79, x99, x299) and also confirmed to work on mac pros.
       
      reference topic:
       
      Kx audio driver mod [sound blaster live!, audigy 1/2/4/RX emu edsp]
    • By BauerMac
      Hey guys,

      working on my second Hackintosh project, and just finished the paintjob and visual side of it.
      Not sure what to call it: I was inspired by sci-fi movies (Aliens (1986) in particular as the attentive reader might notice).
      Perhaps simply "BauerCorp Mod" or similar.
       
      Anywho, this is the build so far: (Software setup still remains)
      • Primary use: Creative work, video editing
      • Corsair C70 case
      • Inno3D iChill GTX 1080 TI
      • ASUS Maximus X Hero 370 (Wi-fi, Bluetooth)
      • i7 8700K
      • 32 GB HyperX RAM
      • Samsung 500GB 850 EVO M.2 SSD
      • (7 SSD drives total > Will be transferred from current machine when everything else is ready. Same with lighting.)
      • PSU: Corsair RM750X
      • CPU fan: Noctua NH-D15
      Let me know what you think, and if you´re interested I´ll post more about the build/painting process itself.

      Thanks   
       















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