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The top was supported on all four sides, this was important as it
will have to bear the weight of a heavy CRT television. I decided to
paint the whole thing black as it would be more in keeping with modern
AV equipment and here was my only outlay, on an aerosol can of black
paint. The wood veneer was not wasted as the wood grain can still be
seen, giving it a very attractive texture.
The complete article is actually quite light, I could nearly put a handle on top and call it a portable.
All the components in place, ready for the top cover.
The hard drive is held
vertical by a rubber strip fixed to the floor on bottom and a piece
of angle screwed to both the drive and the bulkhead on top. Last
thing to be connected up were the fans. The bottle-shaped
black object in the top left-hand corner of the photo above is a 12V to 7.5V 600mA
adapter made to plug into a car cigarette lighter socket. This was
connected to the DPDT switch, scavenged from the old stereo, to
control the fan speed. I disassembled the adapter, removed the end connectors
and soldered the wires to the 12V (yellow wire) and neutral line
of a molex plug. I also soldered a second live wire to the 12V
pin of the molex plug. This one would bypass the adaptor and go to pin
1 of the switch. The one going through the adaptor would go to pin 3 of
the switch. I would only be using one side of the switch to
switch the fan voltage between 12V and 7.5V. The other side of the switch will be used to connect a bi-polar
LED, as soon as I find one.
Including the stock CPU cooler and cheap noisy PSU fan, there are four
fans. The CPU and one of the case fans had sensor wires. These I left
intact, attached to the motherboard fan headers. I cut all the
live and neutral wires from their various connectors. The neutrals I
bundled together and connected to the neutral coming from the adapter. The
live wires I also bundled together and connected to the central
pin of the DPDT switch. Pushing the button once will establish a
circuit between the central pin and pin 1, 12V. Pushing it again will
break that circuit and make a circuit with pin 3, 7.5V. Later I'll
try different combinations of fans, but for now I want to have the same
setup as in my orignal computer case to compare the noise level. I started
up the system with 12V going to the fans and the lid off. Putting the
lid on did result in a slight diminution of the sound level. I
don't think such was ever noticeable when putting the side back on a
There are other cheap ways of doing this, using the 5V and 12V lines to get not only 5V and 12V but also 7V. Check out Cliff Anderson's Fanbus page or Silent PC Review's Get 12V, 7V or 5V for your Fans article.
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