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PC in a desk?

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August 5, 2003 1:04:57 PM

Newbie here but know my stuff overall. Not sure if this question has been asked before. I am building a hardwood desk (mission style) for my office. I want to make the desk hollow so I can lay out the various components flat, then close the top of the desk. CD Trays, buttons, heat monitors and fan control would be recessed in the front, fans would suck and blow from the sides. Power supply would be in it's own area inside the desk. My two questions are, even if I monitor temp and get enough fans, will heat be an issue? (assume p4HT/MSI NEO2/400W) Also, how do I effectively ground the components? Do I only need to ground the mobo? If so, do I need several grounding points, or can I just rip out the part of a PC case that the Mobo is screwed into and just ground that. Thanks in advance. Sorry for such a silly topic.

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August 5, 2003 10:14:54 PM

A good place to start with a project like that would be a removable motherboard tray. Compgeeks has an older case for around $10 that has a good removable tray. Simply remove that tray, cut the back of your drawer for the backplate, and screw it in.

If you plan out the ventilation well, cooling should not be a problem. You'll hear people speak against wood, but that really doesn't matter with good airflow.

Since you don't want a noisy desk, I'd recommend you mount your fans on rubber isolators and use large low speed units.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
August 6, 2003 12:07:54 AM

do mobos need to be grounded? I have run many mobos out of the case on peices of cardboard...i don't think you need to worry about how to properly ground your mobo...

If i put my k6 in a Ferrari it would be faster than your your pentium 4 or Athlon XP :tongue:
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August 6, 2003 12:56:24 AM

You should ground it in operation to reduce RFI.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
August 6, 2003 5:50:48 AM

RFI = RF interference?

If i put my k6 in a Ferrari it would be faster than your your pentium 4 or Athlon XP :tongue:
August 6, 2003 6:07:09 AM

Yes, there is a bunch of it that comes off both sides of the board, it can screw up all sorts of things.

In fact, you don't see major system builders using large window cases probably because they don't meet FCC regs. A small shop might be able to get away with it, without being investigated, but just imagine if Dell did something like that, and sold them to the government (even the FCC!), Doh!

You've probably noticed that most cases come with "knock outs" over the drive bays, in the metal part of the case. This is to meet FCC regulations when the system is fully assembled.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
August 6, 2003 12:30:42 PM

Ok, so the best option would be to ground this plate you were talking about with a wire off of the power supply? Since the only wires to come off a PS are part of the ATX bundle and 3.5/5.25 power plugs, what would be the best way to do this? Drill a screw into the case of the PS and run it to the plate? Are these the only two items that need grounding? I like your ideas, though! Thanks!
August 6, 2003 3:35:44 PM

Ideally you want the whole thing shielded, but most people aren't that cautious any more. You can simply run a ground wire from the outside of the power supply to the motherboard tray to ground them together, but you might not need to, as many boards are grounded by the mounting post, and also connected to the black leads of the power supply which should also be grounded.

There are other ways to shield the entire thing at once. The easiest thing you could do is simply use a horizontal desktop case and a fake drawer over a shelf, with a fold-down face which reveals a complete PC underneath. In fact, that solution would be possible even with an already-made desk, simply dismount the front of a drawer and hinge it underneath.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
August 7, 2003 7:32:10 PM

post pics afterwards :smile:
August 7, 2003 7:44:39 PM

Defintitely will. The desk isn't like crash was talking about with the drawers. Instead it will be a mission style desk, wide and no drawers. The table top will be hinged and approx 3'x8'. The bevels for floppy, cdrom and monitors will be embedded into the desk itself. USB connects on the top, wireless transmitter underneath where the keyboard will lay. All cables inside, and a hole for the monitor wires. Power strip and ups will be inside as well but I want to try to keep overall depth under 5 inches. I don't want it to look bulky. I have a veneer store lined up to give it a nice finished look and I'm working with a carpenter. I'll post pics and plans if it works. Thanks for the help everybody.
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