Case Modding: Enlightening Lighting

Light Sticks: May The Force Be With You

Cold cathode florescent lamps (CCFLs) are particularly well suited for maximizing the amount of light inside your computer. These units emit either single-color, multi-color, or near-UV blacklight. The light sticks come in lengths of either 4" (10cm) or 12" (30cm.) An additional control unit is required for pre-programmed and flashing operation, which usually installs into a free expansion bay. Most light sticks have five buttons for activating programs, including such classics as simple flashing of all LEDs, light stick dimming adjustment, and always-on mode. User programming is not possible.

CCFLs come in a wide assortment of colors from a range of manufacturers

Many different manufacturers offer products

A variety of lengths and types

Hooking up CCFLs is inconvenient, as each pair still requires its own voltage converter. These are not particularly large, but they do make installation more difficult. With more than one pair it gets to be a nuisance, as any disorder inside is immediately noticeable if you have a Plexiglas case or transparent side panels. Bothersome cables can usually be bundled using a cable tie, but there is not always room for the voltage converter where the cable ends. The length of the cable to the converter can only be adapted by soldering, as there are no extension cables on the market yet.

Normal voltage converter 85mm in length

Sharkoon's voltage converter is smaller and thus easier to fit into the case

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Siggy Moersch