I have way too many projects in progress, but let's start another one anyway! Here is my custom desk with an integrated computer. Basically, my desk will be a large computer case!
I'm sure most people may know what I'm trying to build here. It's a custom desk (top) with all the components mounted to the desk. Basically, it's a computer but without the metal box sitting next to your desk. I have looked at hundreds of cases, thinking to myself, "none of these make me smile." I happened to run across one of these custom desks while on a late night surfing session. Needless to say, they were in the thousands of dollars. Nope. I can build one! So I did some research of the prerequisites one needs to have his own. Not much actually, I'm no artist, so I needed to find a way to see it. Used Solidworks and built the custom top to help me "see" it. Check out the 3d viewer.
It's taken me about 3 weeks to get some work done, plus collect PC upgrades. The frame is made with 1in x 8in compressed MDF with a plastic coating. Figured it would save me from som much sanding later. The base of the desk's top, is 1.25in MDF. The image to the right shows the base of my existing desk.
_auto_generated_thumb_ Also got the 120mm fan and LED logo cutout. I'll never get over at how ugly everything is when you're building it.. You hope that it looks better once it's finshed..
My youngest came up with the idea to create a lighted logo on the front. I've been brainstorming on how I could make the front face not look boring. So after a few hours of design and 3D printing, I have to admit, it's awesome! It's backlit by a 8 x 32 matrix, with RGB addressable LEDs. The static light is blue with a white stripe running across to mimic a shine. Below is a first look video. I am planning on optimizing the brightest and timings, but still looks sick currently.
Custom Gamers PC Desk -First Look at the Backlit RR Logo
Got the majority of the basic frame assembled, so it's just the details that needs attention. I did start on the hinge mechanism but can't test until I get the top turned over, which needs to have all floors in place. I'm still working on the PC layout, so until I get that done, I can't turn over the desktop.
4-8-22Slow going but progress is progress. I have been fighting the glass hinges (which was my fault), and the electronics. Hardware is done, but the software is fighting me, and it's winning.. So one feature is ARGB accent lighting highlighting the PC components. These have addressable LEDs and needs a microcontroller that can send commands. Each LED has an embedded IC, Ws8212B, to control each color. These ICs need a signal that has presice timing, meaning that the more features you add, the slower the program.
So the whole point of that last paragraph, I needed to add more hardware. So each PC component will have a dedicated Arduino so I can add the 'Pattern Select' feature. Pattern Select lets you change the colors and movement after you get bored of your static pattern. Each pattern takes a big chunk of processing power and there's a finite limit. I will use a MEGA to do the control GUI and some pro-minis to control the LEDs. Each Pro-Mini will have 18 patterns for that specific PC component. So, in the end (hopefully), you can press a button in a GUI to cycle patterns.
I could't make a decision on what to do with the floor. Obviously, there's going to be LEDs, but didn't feel it would be enough. Came up with a simple solution by putting a vinyl sticker to add some art work to the plain, black floor. For only $20, can't beat that. And for 20 bucks, it's only going to cover a third of the floor, underneath the PC components!
I've had the glass for a few months and just didn't realise how heavy it is. I am convinced that if I cut down the frame even more, the glass would have crushed it. I am adding more metal brackets for strength. Next step is to mount the remaining PC parts, get started bending hard tubing, getting the LEDs and electronics mounted, and also, modifying the Desk bottom for the new top. Very slow going.