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Author Topic: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen  (Read 35226 times)

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theCoder

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Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« on: May 05, 2006, 09:27:28 pm »
My cab lives downstairs and gets so much play by the kids during parties that the parents (mostly me) don't get a chance to play.  I want to build a small lightweight cab that we can pull out and set on the kitchen counter or that we can throw in the trunk and take to special occasions.  This is my second cab project and first built from scratch.  I plan on formally documenting it at: http://home.comcast.net/~larmead/partybox  but am looking forward to sharing the experience and discussing the progress in this forum. 

Below is my original concept sketch (well, it's actually the 5th rev.)  I

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2006, 08:55:27 pm »
PartyBox - Laptop Hack
This post describes the steps I went through to prepare the laptop computer for the PartyBox project.  This laptop is a Compaq 610 with a broken hinge.  The hinge is no problem because I want to use a larger LCD on this project anyway. 

Top Cover Plate
Unfortunately I didn't take a picture of it, but the first step was to pry off the top cover plate near the top.  I had to hunt around, looking for something loose.  I found that if I pushed in from the sides, the center bulged a little.  With a little more effort, it popped off.  I was careful (up to a point) in this project to keep from destroying parts & pieces in case I wanted to use this thing again as a laptop.



Display Cables
There were two cables connecting the display to the main CPU.  This connector was very snug, but it came off with a little wiggling.  I took the cables off first (while the hinges were still attached) to minimize the chances of them getting damaged.


 
The right cable had a ground clip screwed to the frame.  After unscrewing it, the connector came off (very stubbornly) as well.  Both this and the other connector had to be pulled horizontally.



Hinges
The hinges were covered by a small plastic cap.  One was broken off, and the other came off with a little persuasion.  There were two small screws holding each hinge to the base unit.



Separated at last !



Power Button
The last challenge was to hack the power on/off switch.  Once complete with this step I knew there was no turning back.  I suspected that power switch was probably plastic pressing a surface mounted switch.  I was sort of right.  It was plastic sliding horizontally pressing against a vertically mounted piece of plastic with a 45 degree mating surface.  This piece in turn pressed against the surface mounted switch.  I could look into the modem port (right side) and see there was nothing "critical" in the area, so I started to cut.  I used a Dremel tool with a side cutting bit.  I carefully cut out the plastic casing around the switch.  The switch came off, but I couldn't get the 45 degree plastic piece off (white I beam looking piece).  I was afraid of breaking something on the board so I decided to get to the back side of the board, under the switch.



I could tell that I only had about 1/8" gap between the case and the PCB.  The power switch was directly behind the keyboard port.  I needed both so I was very careful at this step.  The plastic came off easily and exposed the backside of the PCB.  I consulted a PC repair friend of mine regarding what to do next.  I suspected that all that was needed was to short out the two leads, but I was afraid I'd kill the box.  He told me that "most" modern laptops use a normally open switch and that shorting the two leads should do the trick.  He also assured me that based on my description of the other leads in the neighborhood; I probably wouldn't fry anything by poking around (perform at your own risk, your mileage may vary).  There were two very distinct solder joints directly below the switch.  I was pleasantly surprised when the unit powered up the first time, by shorting the two joints together with a paper clip, and again when it powered off by doing it again.  All that remains is to solder a few wires and I'm good to go.  I will probably epoxy the wires to the case to keep them from vibrating loose or getting pulled off during construction.

In retrospect, I did not need to hack up the top switch at all.  I just needed to get to the two switch leads on the PCB from the bottom.  Oh, well.  Lesson learned and hopefully useful information for someone else.



Weight Considerations
To save weight, I took the battery out.  This saved me about 1.5 pounds.  I could also take out the dvd drive and keyboard.  Doing so will save me more weight and would allow me to hack off about 1/3 of the overall frame.  I decided against that because I'd probably misplace the drive and not be able to find it when I need to load something on the box.  Also, I'm still holding on the pipe dream that the unit may still be reassembled and used as a laptop again.  Yea right.

Finished Unit



Next project

babydickonboard

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2006, 09:24:33 pm »
i'm excited to see where this goes. i have an old laptop and planned to do something similier w/ it.  perfect cab to bring to parties.   keep the posts a coming.  ;)

arcadefever

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2006, 09:26:33 pm »
serious hacking going on here  :o

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2006, 10:33:01 am »
Hacking the LCD Monitor

This post describes the LCD display size and weight surgery.   A friend of mine recently bought a PC that included and a 15" LCD display.  He is not a 15" monitor kind of guy, so he graciously donated it to the cause.  It is a ViewSonic VG500.  It's just a little bigger than the one built into the laptop computer, but has better resolution and generally looks better when running games. 



I'm shooting for minimal weight and minimal size on this project.  I knew the stand had to go.  It weights 4 pounds and just wouldn't work in the box.  Taking it off was easy, all screws were visible and accessible.



With the base off, I thought I was done.  The thing was still heavier than I thought it should be, so I explored some more.  As with the laptop, I searched around for clues on how to get it apart.  There were no obvious screws, latches etc.  In the bottom portion of the monitor were buttons and what appeared to be speaker grids.  This looked like a great place to start.  I could tell it was a separate plastic piece.  I was less careful dismantling the LCD than I was with the laptop.  I knew I would never use it for anything else, so

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2006, 09:59:49 pm »
hack on!

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2006, 01:38:57 am »
Playing Paper Doll

One recommendation I read over and over again relates to mocking up your CP with cardboard before cutting wood.  Tonight I gave it a go regarding the profile of the cab, considering the layout of the CPU, Monitor, and trackball.  I used a piece of unprinted newspaper (end of a roll picked up at my local newspaper printing site).  It really gave me a lot to think about and helped me ponder the speakers, marquee, air flow, etc.



I learned the following:

1)  I'll probably want to force or draw air between the CPU and monitor.

2)  There's plenty of depth for my trackball & joystick. 

3)  The monitor can be moved back 1" to provide more room between the trackball and monitor.  Apparently people smack their fingers playing golf games?  This may be a problem but I'm not into this genre of games.

4)  My original concept is much too blocky.  With all the major components drawn on the paper, I freeform sketched a layout I've been toying with lately.  I recently saw a driving cab in the bowling alley down the street with this type of profile.  This design gets rid of the marquee, but gets me this cool profile and carves another 2" off the height.  I never would have tried something this radical without first playing paper dolls.



Comments?

vrf

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2006, 04:43:21 am »
I really wanted to have more curves on my design, too, but in the end decided it would be too difficult to build.

The profile pieces are easy to cut up all curvy and such, but it's harder to build the cross sections. Maybe you're thinking of bending material somehow?

Anyhow, great hacking job. This will be a cool little cab.

TOK

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2006, 07:41:40 pm »
Great project. I liked your initial design better than the new one, but I prefer a traditional looking cabinet.

markc74

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2006, 07:16:24 am »
Hi there.

I really like this idea - I've been toying doing something very similar for a while with a vertical screen (my in-progress full-size cab is horizontal only).



How are you planning on covering the monitor i.e. bezel?

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2006, 12:33:33 am »
Great project. I liked your initial design better than the new one, but I prefer a traditional looking cabinet.
Thanks for the comments.  I think I'm going to stick with the curved design.  The more traditional one has been done before.  I'm up for the challenge.


I really wanted to have more curves on my design, too, but in the end decided it would be too difficult to build.

The profile pieces are easy to cut up all curvy and such, but it's harder to build the cross sections. Maybe you're thinking of bending material somehow?

Anyhow, great hacking job. This will be a cool little cab.
I'm thinking about using 1x1" or 1x2" ribs along the top edge and lower front and skin it with 1/8" or 1/4" plywood.  It's going to take some experimentation to get it looking right.  The back and bottoms will be straight pieces.  I was thinking the contour on the bottom would only be cosmetic, done with flat black paint.  If that looks too cheesy I might route out a slight recess and let the shadows provide the effect.  We'll see.

How are you planning on covering the monitor i.e. bezel?

For the bezel I'm thinking about using 1/4" or 3/8" plywood with a rounded corner hole cut out; then come through with a router and give it a rounded chamfer.  I don't have much room to work with.  The monitor will be physically attached to the back side of the bezel piece.  As with the bent wood, I've got some experimentation to do.

I'm definitely open to suggestions.

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2006, 03:25:00 am »
Side Art

One thing on my todo list is to learn Photoshop.  I know you can make a career of it, there is so much you can do with it.  I just want to get to the point where I can generate the occasional logo or cool user interface graphic to add a little punch to my applications at work.  Now is the time.  After many nights doing tutorial after tutorial, I'm sort of getting past the initial brick wall learning curve.

Below is my first draft of the side art for the PartyBox.  I'm into abstract art.  This has the light hearted feel I was looking for with a slight hint of grunge.

odysseyroc

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2006, 04:41:12 am »
Your cyans, magentas and greens are "illegal". They will grey out quite a bit in the printing process. This piece also screams out "Hey, I'm learning photoshop!". I would tone down on the beveling and drop shadows. Right now your cast shadows and highlights (on the letters) are in conflicting directions.

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2006, 10:36:15 am »
I had a MAJOR problem when I tried to use my Dell latitude in a cocktail. 

When I unhooked the monitor from the laptop + motherboard, things went very awry.  It had ran fine on the external monitor prior to disconnecting the laptop's monitor, but the screen resolution changed immensely despite reinstalling windows XP and the proper drivers after taking off the monitor.  Additionally, I had to reinstall all the usb drivers (it would no longer recognize usb keyboard, IPAC, etc).  Hopefully yours won't act as schizo as mine did when I took off the monitor....so test it out first BEFORE having your cab done....

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2006, 12:37:34 am »
Your cyans, magentas and greens are "illegal". They will grey out quite a bit in the printing process. This piece also screams out "Hey, I'm learning photoshop!". I would tone down on the beveling and drop shadows. Right now your cast shadows and highlights (on the letters) are in conflicting directions.
Thanks for the feedback.  What do you mean by "illegal"?  What printing process does that?  Regarding the screams... thanks.  I'll tone it down a bit.  I also need to change the shape.  The oval does not go with the crescent contour.  I'll post another image for you guys to throw rocks at, er, ah, critique. 

I had a MAJOR problem when I tried to use my Dell latitude in a cocktail. 

When I unhooked the monitor from the laptop + motherboard, things went very awry.  It had ran fine on the external monitor prior to disconnecting the laptop's monitor, but the screen resolution changed immensely despite reinstalling windows XP and the proper drivers after taking off the monitor.  Additionally, I had to reinstall all the usb drivers (it would no longer recognize usb keyboard, IPAC, etc).  Hopefully yours won't act as schizo as mine did when I took off the monitor....so test it out first BEFORE having your cab done....
Good advice on testing before building.  Not that I've ever been burned on that before.  Sorry to hear about your experience.  Perhaps the monitor had a critical PCB embedded somewhere?  I lucked out.  It worked fine.

Last night I did the first test of the system following the surgeries on both the CPU and Monitor.  Success.   Next I need to test the hacked up a pair of amplified speakers.  I'll want to make sure they still work before cutting any holes.

Tomorrow I'm picking up the wood for this project.  I spoke with a cabinet maker friend of mine.  He recommended going with birch plywood.  He showed me some stuff he uses that has 12 plies.  He claims it is stronger than MDF, is a little lighter (remember my weight goal of < 25#), and takes wood screws much better.  Unfortunately it is more expensive than MDF (around $50 per 4x8 sheet).  I asked him about using formica for the rounded surfaces, but he said it is only good if you have a solid surface under the entire area.  He also said it does not take well to paint.  He recommended going with a "bendable" plywood for the rounded surfaces.  My neighbor had a stack of old 1/8" paneling that is 3 ply.  I'll give it a try.

odysseyroc

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #15 on: May 16, 2006, 02:21:47 am »
by "illegal" I mean it's out of the printable color gamut. Super saturated colors don't print well at all because of the CMYK printing process. In photoshop, you can preview in cmyk by pressing command/y if you have a Mac and I think Control Y in Windows. Also your color palette will warn you with an exclamation point inside of a triangle if you pick a color that isn't legal.

IG-88

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #16 on: May 16, 2006, 10:13:11 pm »

Tomorrow I'm picking up the wood for this project.  I spoke with a cabinet maker friend of mine.  He recommended going with birch plywood.  He showed me some stuff he uses that has 12 plies.  He claims it is stronger than MDF, is a little lighter (remember my weight goal of < 25#), and takes wood screws much better.  Unfortunately it is more expensive than MDF (around $50 per 4x8 sheet).  I asked him about using formica for the rounded surfaces, but he said it is only good if you have a solid surface under the entire area.  He also said it does not take well to paint.  He recommended going with a "bendable" plywood for the rounded surfaces.  My neighbor had a stack of old 1/8" paneling that is 3 ply.  I'll give it a try.

I wouldn't go for the Birch ply if I were you. The $$ is way too high. Have you ever thought of using "solid" wood? The store I buy my lumber at has this 3/4"x 36"x 48" stuff that is actually little strips of pine that are glued together to form the wide widths. I believe it is used for shelving. It's really cheap and as flat or square as MDF, lighter and MUCH easier to work with.

You could probably get away with using 1/2" ply that is surfaced on one side. I dunno. Heck, take a stroll around your local mega lumber yard you should be able to find something.

Oh ya, have you thought about using masonite for the bendable pieces? You may want to check that out also...
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theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #17 on: May 23, 2006, 12:22:56 am »
IG-88 - My cabinet builder buddy also suggested going with 1/2" wood to reduce the weight but the 3/4" t-molding is already in.  He ordered the 3/4" birch wood for me so I was committed.  Regarding solid vs. plywood, He has been building cabinets and fine furnature for over 20 years.  Who am I to question his recommendation. 

Today I had a chance to cut out the side panels.  When I transferred the profile from paper to wood I had a chance to double check the overall fit of the CPU, monitor, power transformers etc.  I further reduced the height by shortening the top point.  I also reduced the height of the control panel by

vrf

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #18 on: May 23, 2006, 09:44:42 pm »
wow, it's going to be plenty sturdy.

I'm interested in seeing how the curves turn out. (You're a braver man that I.) Keep up the good work!

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2006, 02:31:12 am »
Supporting Ribs

Tonight I made a lot of progress on the cross members.  These pieces provide the shape for the outer skin and are the retaining supports for the CPU and monitor. 

It is really critical that all pieces are the same length.  I clamped down a scrap piece of wood on the table by the cutoff saw at exactly 18".  This provided a jig for all pieces made.

I want the top leading edge piece to be smooth and match the contour of the outer edge.  I transferred the profile to both edges of a board.  I then very smoothly sanded it with a table mounted belt sander.  I had to work one side at a time, eventually matching the profile. 



Here's a shot of the top edge piece sitting in place



Originally I was thinking about skinning the front under the CP.  After evaluating things with the side panels cut, I decided to just go with a solid piece of wood.  It is going to be much stronger and less problematic.  So much for all the weight I cut out of the monitor and CPU.  Oh, well.



The skin on the back contour will start in a recess (yet to be cut out ) in the top edge piece, be glued to the two retaining supports, then straight down the back side with two more ribs and finally pinned in a recess in the back-bottom piece.  The skin will hopefully be a straight flat surface from the end of the top curve down to the bottom. 



The CPU and monitor will be held at the top and bottom with slotted cross members.  The monitor will be mounted on a piece of

whatzcrackn

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2006, 09:45:10 am »
flippin sweet!  Lemme have it, when you are done  ;D

much better den tots!!

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #21 on: May 28, 2006, 09:02:08 pm »
Man I

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #22 on: May 30, 2006, 11:53:33 pm »
This weekend was very productive.  I

IG-88

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #23 on: May 31, 2006, 04:11:51 pm »
This one has got "Mamey" written all over it    :notworthy:
"I know what a HAL 9000 is... I was wondering if HAL 7600 was his retarded cousin or something..."
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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #24 on: May 31, 2006, 08:27:56 pm »
 :notworthy:

Wow.  Nice job.  This is looking really good so far. 

-D

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #25 on: May 31, 2006, 08:59:38 pm »
I'm very excited to see how this comes along.
I had to beat them to death with their own shoes...

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #26 on: May 31, 2006, 11:04:21 pm »
Thanks for the complements.  This stuff is a blast.  This is a lot different than modifying an existing cab.

Excuse my ignorance, I'm kinda new to this community.  I'm assuming it is good to "have mamey written all over it".  What is mamey?

vrf

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #27 on: June 01, 2006, 01:32:27 am »
The MAMEY award is a little award for excellence in arcade cab building. IG-88 probably thinks your cab would win the misc category. (KenToad's bartop won the last one.)

http://www.mameworld.net/massive/NEWMAMEY/awards.html

Great work on the curving back panel! It'll be fun to see this little cab finished.

theCoder

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #28 on: June 01, 2006, 01:54:26 am »
Control Panel Controls & Artwork

Attached is my current draft for the control panel.  There is a lot to talk about here, so

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #29 on: June 01, 2006, 09:02:20 am »
I think the CPO looks very cool!  The tweaks I would make would be...
1) Replace "$$" with "25c" (the "c" is supposed to be the cents sign)
2) Remove the "Fire" label.  I think it looks a little off labeling that button and not the others next to it

IG-88

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #30 on: June 01, 2006, 08:53:47 pm »
The MAMEY award is a little award for excellence in arcade cab building. IG-88 probably thinks your cab would win the misc category. (KenToad's bartop won the last one.)

http://www.mameworld.net/massive/NEWMAMEY/awards.html

Great work on the curving back panel! It'll be fun to see this little cab finished.

Exactly.
"I know what a HAL 9000 is... I was wondering if HAL 7600 was his retarded cousin or something..."
-HarumaN

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #31 on: June 01, 2006, 10:16:11 pm »
Incredible effort !!!

There are so many ways to enter this hobby/obsession.

This is another seriously origional unique machine built for the joy of the games..

Well Done.

I hope to some day follow in your footsteps and have multiple cabinets of different types.
A Bad Day Playing Is Better Than a Good Day Working

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #32 on: June 01, 2006, 11:39:12 pm »
The MAMEY award is a little award for excellence in arcade cab building. IG-88 probably thinks your cab would win the misc category. (KenToad's bartop won the last one.)

http://www.mameworld.net/massive/NEWMAMEY/awards.html

Great work on the curving back panel! It'll be fun to see this little cab finished.

Exactly.
Thanks.  But not so fast, I've still got lots of opportunity to screw this thing up.

Incredible effort !!!

There are so many ways to enter this hobby/obsession.

This is another seriously origional unique machine built for the joy of the games..

Well Done.

I hope to some day follow in your footsteps and have multiple cabinets of different types.
So how do you plan to enter.  Go for it!

Crafty

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #33 on: June 02, 2006, 12:11:18 am »
Well at this stage I think I am following in the time honoured tradition of procrastination...

No actually as with everyone else around here. I literally stumbled on to MAME and BYOAC before realising the extent to which this could expand.

Basically I am collecting ideas and from day to day switch between upright 4 player cabinet, Cocktail Caninet, 3/4 upright for the kids, tabletop for the shack etc etc.

Other days (i'm dreaming) I imagine spots in my house/life for all the above.

Reality now kicks in and I realise that I have built nought yet.
Currently I have a new shed, where this project will be constructed, that has no concrete floor. (Money Issues) Still one can dream can't one??

Keep up the good work and I will keep collecting ideas.
A Bad Day Playing Is Better Than a Good Day Working

Tahnok

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #34 on: June 02, 2006, 02:08:18 am »
Very cool. I can't wait to see this cab finished. I'm a bit of a fan of curvy bartops...
Note: Out of town with limited internet access 2-28-08 through 3-16-08

Bartop/Countertop Cabinet Kits For Sale

bishmasterb

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #35 on: June 02, 2006, 11:49:38 am »
coder,

Great project!

Couple of questions for you:

1) Sorry if you covered this and I missed it; why did you decide to use a 15" external LCD monitor instead of the LCD panel in the laptop?

2) The metal dimples that you used to transfer the location of the dowel holes to the opposite side and cross members, what are those called and where did you get them? I typically use a template to transfer the dowel hole locations, but those would come in handy as well.

thanks
"We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another." -Jonathan Swift

infiniteomega

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #36 on: June 02, 2006, 05:31:30 pm »
I can't answer for him but the main reasons *I* would use an external monitor over a laptop's  are that a) response time b) contrast c) resolution.  That laptop looks as though it's pretty old, and as such, it has an older lcd.  The response time on those is high to the point where moving images cause a blurring effect that is just nasty for gaming.  Besides that, the laptop lcd probably has a much poorer contrast ratio compared to the new 15" he got.  And then there's the resolution issue.  The laptop lcd may have a much higher resolution than the new 15" making the games that much more stretched and pixelated.

Thinking about it, it may also be an issue of image adjustability.  Can't really adjust laptop lcd monitors manually.  That may also be part of the equation.  Not sure if that's what coder has going on, but that's what I think of when comparing laptop vs desktop lcd.

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #37 on: June 02, 2006, 08:35:20 pm »

2) The metal dimples that you used to transfer the location of the dowel holes to the opposite side and cross members, what are those called and where did you get them? I typically use a template to transfer the dowel hole locations, but those would come in handy as well.


You can get those dowel jobs at any big hardware store, Home Depot, etc.  In the hardware section they might sell bags of dowels and in that same section they will have those metal markers for all the standard dowel sizes.

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #38 on: June 02, 2006, 10:20:41 pm »
coder,

Great project!

Couple of questions for you:

1) Sorry if you covered this and I missed it; why did you decide to use a 15" external LCD monitor instead of the LCD panel in the laptop?

2) The metal dimples that you used to transfer the location of the dowel holes to the opposite side and cross members, what are those called and where did you get them? I typically use a template to transfer the dowel hole locations, but those would come in handy as well.

thanks

1)  Monitor - I really wanted to go with the laptop monitor.  I've already got it and it is light.  I went with the external one for 3 reasons.  The primary one is the image quality.  The LCD just looked better.  This may have just been a contrast setting or something, but that was my perception.  It is also about 1" bigger.  And finally I really didn't want to deal with cutting and soldering the micro-wires connecting the screen to the motherboard.  I hacked into a similar cable once and it was filled with funky nylon covered in copper foil.  Needless to say it was hard to solder.

2)  Metal Dimples - They are called dowel centers.  I didn't have to buy them, my friend had three sets of different sizes.  I found a site with them at: http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=9978
They charge $5 for a pack of 8.  According to Timoe you can pick them up at your local hardware store.

bishmasterb

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Re: Party-Box...Countertop cab w/ laptop & flat screen
« Reply #39 on: June 02, 2006, 11:42:38 pm »
1) Understand about the image quality. As far as soldering though, I've done a couple of bartops with laptops, and in both cases I simply used the existing cable/LCD panel and placed the panel on the back of the notebook. The picture below shows this, although it's a little hard to tell, the lcd panel is simply velcro'd to the back of the laptop.

2) Thanks for posting your progress with these. I've tried to mickey mouse something like those before, I didn't know things were made specifically for that purpose!

Looking forward to seeing the progress on your cab.

"We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another." -Jonathan Swift

  
 

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