Tube Radio PC
Many times, a modder will spend a fortune on a case specifically to have it be a blank slate, filled with clean lines and lacking unnecessary additions that have to be undone. Companies like Lian Li and Silverstone have based their entire case designing existances on just this concept - simple and clean, leaving the modder to make the system that he or she wants.
Other times, though, you get a case specifically because it already adheres to a vision - and that's exactly the case with s_q_u_e_e's recent Tube Radio PC. Rather than heavily modifying a PC case to fit the theme of the radios of old, s_q_u_e_e went the opposite route - he found a radio of old and decided to make it fit a PC.
By switching things around, he was able to reduce the uphill battle significantly. But don't let that deter you from thinking he's working hard - just because the outside doesn't change much doesn't mean there's not a lot of planning to make the insides fit well. In order to keep the theme, he's going to have to do some pretty nice things. Of course, he wouldn't be on this list if he wasn't...
First things first, we need to meet the victim in this project. This old tube radio has certainly seen better days, particularly since there's nothing inside of it! The outside isn't in great shape, either - the wood is still in fairly good order but its finish is well beyond gone.
Laying out the Tube Radio PC has been a little bit harder than s_q_u_e_e first imagined. Yes, there is plenty of space - but heat concerns inside such a low-ventilation wooden box could quickly melt an unorganized setup. Undaunted, he forged ahead, starting with a motherboard try from made from MDF.
The motherboard tray needed to slide to give access to the system's components, as the only real access to the machine was its backplate. So, s_q_u_e_e made the frame a bit sturdier, designing his own backplate in the process. The best laid plans of mice and men, though - he'd soon be redoing this.
The system design changed a bit in the middle of things as he realized that the front ventilation would not house the fan he was hoping along with his video card. So, the fan was moved to the back. The DVD drive would remain up front, but the rest of the slats would be used as a ventilation inlet rather than a spot for forced-air cooling.
S_q_u_e_e has dropped us a couple teaser pics so far to hold us over until his next update. What on earth would he do with all of those antique typewriter keys? We're hoping the answer is one of the best keyboard mods we'll have seen in a long time. He also took some time to redo the backplate, styling it up to contain its own fan grills rather than relying on using metal. This "slot" style ventilation is mcuh more in the spirit of the original radio.
We know we'll be looking forward to seeing what s_q_u_e_e does to continue on with this project. So make sure to stop by his worklog
and keep an eye out yourselves.