Case Mods v. Hardware hacks: when style and function collide.

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doug-doug the mighty's picture
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Case Mods v. Hardware hacks: when style and function collide.

Okay, the thing I am looking for here is ideas and feedback. I recognize that everyone will have greatly varied opinions on which is better and that it will also vary based on the case v the hack.

As most of you know, I am in the process of upgrading my Quadra 950. I will need to slightly mod the case exterior to accomodate the stuff and provide access to some of the things I am planning on the inside. The problem is that this goes against my mantra to keep the case looking as stock as possible. I have found myself quite torn on the matter.

Here are some details and thoughts about the machine:
NuBus cards to be installed:
[*]Pro Audio Spectrum 16 w/ breakout box.
[*]Radius VVS card w/ breakout box.
------may construct a custom housing to combine the above two boxes to one access point.

[*] two FWB Jackhammer SCSI cards

Internal drives to be installed:
[*]Floppy (stock)
[*]Floppy (second drive - contingent upon development of hardware hack)
--------------thought I might cut two holes in the case to the right of the Apple logo - will not obstruct airflow to PSU too much.
[*]Nakamichi 5-CD changer (takes 1 bay)
[*]CD-R (takes 1 bay)
[*]caddy loading CD (thought about mounting below CD-r and above floppy(s), requires cutting hole in case.
[*]2x 250MB SCSI drives - may try to mount these vertically behind case front if they do not fit by 9Giggers.
[*]6x 9G SCSI drives - will be building some kind of backplane and mounting above PSU, on their sides.
[*]caddy loading CD - may be ablt to obtain a second one of these and would like to mount it in the case, but the NuBus cards will interfere with the space.

I know, sounds crazy, but I know I can make all of these things fit if I am willing to accept the fact that I will need to modify the externals significantly. I could always recase the machine, but then it is not really a Quadra 950 is it? I could suck it up and cut the floppy hole(s) and the slot(s) for the caddy(s), but then I must deal with the extensive case mod - enough so that I would think too seriously about recasing. I cold scale back on what I want to add and work within the limits of the case, even though the hardware config would work, but then that is not really pushing the envelope is it?

For all of you out there that have done case mods and those that have opted to keep the original aesthetics, what were some of your considerations and why did you choose the option you did?

Just fishing for ideas to help me settle on a final design...
--DDTM

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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Think I have an answer...

After talking to a few folks I know, I came to an idea on how to hadle this. I am going to remove the stock side panel of the case and replace with a custom fabricated case extension with plastics painted to match the original color. This extender will allow me to mount caddy drives and floppy(s) vertically and provide room for extra drives on the back side. Having the extra internal busses leaves me with a need for room for internal drives. The extension will include a cooling fan. (Yes, I will be mindful of my power draw vs. PSU limits. This extension should allow me to satisfy my hunger for function yet being true to the original aesthetics.

Construction of the chasis extension will be aluminum with pop-rivets. The original cover will be reused and incorporated into the extender. The breakout boxes for the PAS and VVS will be incorporated into the extender (may try to make connections internally to minimize wire clutter on back of case).

--DDTM

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And all this...

for a computer less powerful then my cell phone. ;^>

--Peace

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Ah, but can you case mod your

Ah, but can you case mod your phone and have 6 or 7 CDs in it at the same time? I think not..

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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duh.

Nevermind, I re-read the whole thread after posting and finally got it - 'are you guys all on the same team'?

--DDTM

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Under-Quadra extension case

Why not create an external case that holds a bunch of your extra drives and a supplementary PSU? The added case could have a simple design and be the same size as the Quadra. The Quadra could sit on top of the new box. For extra credit you could mount any SCSI connector(s), second floppy connector and PSU power-on trigger or switched 120 AC in the gap between the Quadra and the external box (the Quadra would have hidden extender connectors on its underside and the new box would have matching connectors on its top surface. Just setting the Quadra on the box would automatically connect it to the external extender box and the extender box would be very neat with no added cables.

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I always go with whatever wil

I always go with whatever will make the machine work the way I want it. My latest case mod was to get my G4 running cooler and quieter. The El Capitan case just SUCKS for cooling. So I changed cases. It now runs much much cooler, and a lot quieter. And it looks great too. I also took the opportunity to mod the machine further, so it will also be faster.

Basically, if a case mod is required to make the machine function or perform better, then I do it.

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FYI, PM9150

had the floppy down in the lower part of the case front, same basic formfactor . . .

dan k

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Hmm...

Your modding to this quadra seems quite extensive. What will be its intended function?

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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Function?

I will be storing MP3s on this machine and using it as a iTunes server. As hard drives get added, the role of simple file server comes to mind. The VVS and PAS16 cards will provide for basic AV editing which can then be burned to DVD on another machine (primarily converting my old VHS collection.

I will also be docking an eMate to it. It will do a lot of little things.

--DDTM

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Cool idea.

I like the idea. I had heard stories about people doing this kind of thing with SEs or something 'cuz some machines already had some kind of diagnostic port on the bottom that could be tapped into for this type of thing.

I was (and still am leaning towards) an extender that basically snaps to the side of the Quadra where the current access panel door is and then snapping the door to the other side of the extender. The extender is only going to be about 5 inches wide, so I had not thought about stacking things. Since I have the potential to route multiple SCSI busses to the extension, I can see the overheard of connectors becoming a small issue. I will keep this in the back of my mind as I start to actually build it out.

--DDTM

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