Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

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Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:34 pm

I have a custom-built case for my HTPC which was born out of the necessity to fit a recycled ATX system into a hole in my entertainment system too small for any ATX case to fit. The case ended up being about 5.5"x9.5"x12.5" (width, depth, height) and fits the hole perfectly while housing an ATX mobo, ATX PSU, graphics card, and a 3.5" hdd. The case was an open-sided design to show off the components, had a programmable IR reciever that acted as a power button, as well as a standard power button that I ended up super-glueing to the side of the PSU.

Fast forward to today and I have a mITX FM2 setup with a TFX PSU sitting in it. I want a newer/better/smaller case for it, but I'm not willing to spend $75 on something like this even though it's a perfect fit. My case choices are limited by my TFX PSU (and budget) so I figured why not build another custom case. This time around though, I'd like to have at least one front USB3.0 port so I found this 2-port Front Panel USB3.0 Mount.

Now I'm thinking it would be nice to have a power button on the front of the case along with the USB3.0 ports. My problem is that I can't find a front-panel USB3.0 mount that includes a power button. I have a separate power button like this but I think it'd look cleaner if the USB3.0 and power button resided on the same backplate. Please help!!
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:52 pm

It sounds like you're no stranger to DIY, so why not put something together with some switches you can find here? http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l1/g52/Swi ... d=Uj2bw4DS
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:25 pm

Ryhadar wrote:why not put something together with some switches

That's an option, but I'd like to keep "switch cost" at a minimum if possible. I don't think I need anything particularly fancy.

[Tangent] I wonder if anyone has a cigarette lighter in their case. I'm not a smoker, but that's pretty awesome.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:32 pm

An ATX power switch is nothing more intimidating that an SPST (single-pole single-throw), NO (normally open), momentary switch. There are numerous options for panel-type switches in this configuration, through-hole and flush-mount, that will do the job. Your local RadioShack may have 5-15 options, and if none of those are your style, Mouser or Digi-Key will offer hundreds more.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:59 pm

DPete27 wrote:
Ryhadar wrote:why not put something together with some switches

That's an option, but I'd like to keep "switch cost" at a minimum if possible. I don't think I need anything particularly fancy.

[Tangent] I wonder if anyone has a cigarette lighter in their case. I'm not a smoker, but that's pretty awesome.


You built an esoteric machine in an esoteric case for an esoteric entertainment center, you want a completely unnecessary and unneeded cigarette lighter, and yet you're concerned about "switch cost"?
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:47 pm

ludi wrote: Your local RadioShack may have 5-15 options

Thanks for the advice, I'll go see what I can find. For some reason, radio shack never crossed my mind even though I've gone there many times for LED swaps in new cases. (blue is soooo boring)

BIF wrote:you want a completely unnecessary and unneeded cigarette lighter, and yet you're concerned about "switch cost"?

I never said I was going to buy the cigarette lighter bay, or even that I wanted it, just that it was unique.....jeesh.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:46 am

DPete27 wrote:Thanks for the advice, I'll go see what I can find. For some reason, radio shack never crossed my mind even though I've gone there many times for LED swaps in new cases. (blue is soooo boring)

Personally, I'd sub the word "annoying" for "boring". Blame it on the fact that inexpensive blue LEDs didn't hit the market until around 10 years ago; then everyone started using them because they were "different". Now they're everywhere, and half the time they're also too damn bright.

(Yeah, I'm just a cranky old geek who longs for the days when most LEDs were red, like they should be!)
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:20 am

I've switched to red LEDs in my main rig in the last two builds I've had. Just the power and hdd leds though. I don't like all the flashy stuff personally, understated accents go a long way. The benefits of installing your own LEDs is that there's a variety of intensities to choose from. It's a very simple practice in soldering to change out the power and hdd LEDs on any case. Like you said, different is key, and everything being blue is NOT different.

Still hoping someone can suggest a single front IO panel that includes power button and USB3.0...
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:35 am

axeman wrote:I seem to recall hearing the annoying factor of blue LEDs has to do with our eyes' higher sensitivity to blue wavelengths. In any case, I can't believe I haven't thought of swapping out those annoying blue LEDs that are in pretty much every case nowadays. :o


Nope they're just really bright, and dead on they often have no filter, tend to flare.

Very bright blue or higher energy light (<500nm) isn't good for your eyes in the long run though.

Human eye color sensitivity is a neat curve.

Random fun fact, "blu-ray" is really on the far edge of our violet perception. You can get them as cheap laser pointers too, fun to see all the stuff that fluoresces.
I have a pair of decently calibrated pointers, a 532nm 5mw green (freq-doubled infrared, there are no 'real' greens yet, first person who can produce them like the others is rich) and a 405nm 10mw "blue-ray" GaN.
The green one easily appears 20 times brighter or more.

For OP: you're going to have to DIY for power buttons, take a usb+whatever panel that you like and mod it.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:38 am

Power buttons tend to be built into the case, I reckon you'll struggle to find a USB3 front panel module that has one integrated - I've certainly never seen one, that I can recall. Best bet would probably be to get a USB3 bay device and drill a hole for a power switch. Maybe something like one of these would suffice for a base:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6811996037

or

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6811998134

or

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6812186176
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 10:15 am

For something a little different you could mount a switch from a Cherry mechanical keyboard. WASD Keyboards sells individual switch mechanisms and keycaps in multiple colors; you can even have them laser etch or engrave whatever you want on the keycaps.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:59 am

Mentawl wrote:Best bet would probably be to get a USB3 bay device and drill a hole for a power switch

Good point! I had been avoiding looking at drive bay style assemblies because I don't plan on putting formal drive bays in this thing. Looking at that Biostar model though, I can see that lending itself well to some modifications. It's minimally invasive too, that's a plus. Sold.
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Re: Help Finding Front IO Panel for Custom Case

Postposted on Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:12 am

I use blue or white LEDs, but I use the relatively low intensity ones that are not OMG bright.

My CNC/workshop PC has the cigarette lighter FrozenCPU used to carry which is just a lighter no switches. I use it to light my coal forge (ok actually I light a rolled paper ring but you get the point.)
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