Reply 2540 of 2647, by ubiq
nezwick wrote on 2023-11-17, 13:28:
Here's my retro PC #2. […]
Here's my retro PC #2.
It was a FB Marketplace find - paid $25 for it in "unknown working condition" with no hard drive or graphics card. I promise you it did not look like these pictures when I bought it. It was a complete disaster with wires and cables and plugs and loose parts everywhere, and of course packed with dust.
At the time, I had just completed my Athlon XP 1700+ tribute system and did not really have a use for another Socket A rig, especially one as ridiculous looking as this. I always considered these types of cases to be gaudy and obnoxious and unnecessarily huge.
I had actually considered parting it out and selling everything on eBay for a profit, but decided to give it a chance and see what I could do with it first. I'm glad I did, because the style has really grown on me and it feels perfectly mid-2000s.
Aside from a general cleaning and a whole lot of time spent on taming the cable mess, it really didn't need much to get going aside from a fresh CMOS battery, graphics card, and a SATA HDD. I installed XP Pro and started taking inventory of the specs.
Case: Thermaltake Xaser III w/ original Thermaltake Hardcano fan controller
CPU: AMD Athlon XP 3000+ (Barton core 400FSB version!) at stock speed
MB: ASUS A7N8X Deluxe, nForce2 chipset, with all the accessory PCI slot brackets
RAM: 1GB Corsair TWIN X DDR 400 (2x 256 and 1x 512, runs in dual channel)
HDD: Seagate 160GB SATA - added from my personal stash
Sound: onboard nVidia nForce2 "SoundStorm"
GPU: Gainward nVidia GeForce FX 5700 256MB AGP 8x - also added from my personal stash
Case cooling: (5x) original Thermaltake 80mm fans, (2x) generic blue LED fans - total of 7 fans
CPU cooling: Thermaltake Volcano7 with a blue LED fan
Lights: Green cold cathodes
Storage: IDE DVD-ROM and CD-RW, and a 3 1/2 floppy
Other: Cooler master round/clear IDE cable and generic round/black floppy cable
I did the best cable management job that I knew how. There are SO many wires to deal with (pertaining to the fan controller, 7 fans, and front panel illumination) and with no cable management pathways, I hid what I could behind the left panel and inside a black sleeve. It doesn't measure up to modern cable management practices, but it's better than what I probably would have come up with in 2003, and it honestly looks period appropriate.
I added the green lights and blue fans. I also upgraded the CPU cooler. It was a stock AMD cooler and the 60mm fan was SO loud. The Thermaltake Volcano7 that I originally had in my 1700+ machine fits pretty nicely in here.
So aside from possibly upgrading the graphics card when I come across a better one, this rig is in its final form. I don't really use it much right now, but I'm definitely hanging onto it. I do enjoy how the blue LED fans and green cathode lighting look together.
Nice! Nice nice nice!
I totally get how old school case bling can be appealing now when it maybe wasn't at the time. When people first started cutting windows into their cases and adding LEDs to their fans, I just couldn't understand why you would want that. As far as I was concerned, a computer should be as small, quiet, and unobtrusive as possible - adding bling to it was the opposite!
Now I'm like.. yeah, it's ok for computers to look cool. 😎👍