80GB Seagate Spinpoint - $10
120mm Yate Loon at 5V - $6
fasteners - $3 at Lowe's
Celeron 400MHz, Dell proprietary PSU - free
The first picture shows how it all goes together. I crudely cut a gaping hole in the PSU, then ziptied a 120mm grille (to complete the Faraday cage that is the PSU's case) and a fan in place.
Note how the mobo and hard drive are bolted in place. I've accidentally mantained an automotive theme here. I like it.
The PSU goes at the rear left corner, where I cut a cold air inlet. The fan will face the CPU, per the suggestion of IsaacKuo in another thread.
Here's the computer up and running. I haven't yet cut a port for USB, ethernet, or audio, but it would be a trivial matter to do so.
Temperatures are amazingly good. The mobo and CPU lack thermal sensors, but I do have a meat thermometer which I know to be accurate +/- 1oF in that range. At full load, with the Radeon 7200 rendering 3D, air temperatures near the CPU and the GPU do not exceed 95oF with an inlet temperature around 75oF (a rise of 11oC). The hard drive is only warm to the touch; perfectly acceptable.
I'm contemplating throwing my TV/radio tuner card in the box, but I really want to keep the idle power consumption down, as this computer runs many hours a day, and I seldom watch television anyway.
And the reason I made it: It's so very quiet. Not virtually inaudible, but it is as quiet as a Seagate Spinpoint in a cardboard box. With the hard drive spun down, the only hint that it's on is a very faint noise that's either a whine or a buzz.
Almost virtually inaudible.
Custom cases were never so easy and adaptable.
This layout is so much better than ATX. I would never have been this quiet and cool in that Dell case.
A hard drive enclosure.
A computer that won't break if you use it as a stool or a coaster.
A method of better securing the PCI cards.
A cardboard box that's slightly smaller. About 8cm narrower would be ideal.[/img]