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Other => CPU/GPU Bitcoin mining hardware => Topic started by: haploid23 on August 03, 2011, 11:43:53 PM



Title: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 03, 2011, 11:43:53 PM
i started on the small DIY project about 2 weeks ago with the assumption that it would take 6 hours max. it shouldn't take too long right? all you have to do chop up some bars and piece them together. boy was i wrong... i've spent nearly 18 hours on it and not yet fully finished. it's a pretty straight forward process, but just very time consuming. i only used very simple tools, nothing complicated:

  • dremel (with cutting disc, and drill bit)
  • rivet gun (with rivets)
  • ruler
  • pen
  • screws with washer and nut
  • 2x 8' aluminum L-bars

i'll be using a MSI bing bang x58 motherboard, which has 7 pci-e slots. i built this rack to fit 7 GPU on top with a full slot space in between each card for breathing room. there's also 1 additional space for a 8th GPU on the bottom, next to the PSU. there's only 2-3 motherboards with 8 pci-e slots (including the MSI big bang marshal), so most likely i'll never use these motherboards, but i just made that 8th slot in case i'll ever need it.

it's not completely done, but i'll snap a few pics of what it looks:

empty frames
http://img535.imageshack.us/img535/5747/dscn7338d.jpg (http://img535.imageshack.us/i/dscn7338d.jpg/)

http://img194.imageshack.us/img194/1715/dscn7339w.jpg (http://img194.imageshack.us/i/dscn7339w.jpg/)

this is going to be a double PSU rack, but i have not drilled holes for the screws yet. it's just soft mounted right now.
http://img827.imageshack.us/img827/9171/dscn7340.jpg (http://img827.imageshack.us/i/dscn7340.jpg/)

mounted the motherboard
http://img803.imageshack.us/img803/5283/dscn7342.jpg (http://img803.imageshack.us/i/dscn7342.jpg/)

a closer shot, you can see i used a long screw with washer and nut to use as the motherboard standoffs. after the motherboard is mounted, i could add another optional nut on the very top to secure it, but i didn't think this was necessary. the screw is long enough, the motherboard won't be popping out.
http://img96.imageshack.us/img96/1213/dscn7343.jpg (http://img96.imageshack.us/i/dscn7343.jpg/)

2 GPU's mounted
http://img10.imageshack.us/img10/5666/dscn7345b.jpg (http://img10.imageshack.us/i/dscn7345b.jpg/)

these next few pics is just for lulz. the GPU's in here are NOT going to be used in this exact setup.
http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/4871/dscn7347f.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/717/dscn7347f.jpg/)

7 GPU's test-mounted on top
http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/8154/dscn7348x.jpg (http://img97.imageshack.us/i/dscn7348x.jpg/)

this shows 8 GPU's total, 7 on top and 1 on the bottom next to the PSU
http://img828.imageshack.us/img828/8134/dscn7349f.jpg (http://img828.imageshack.us/i/dscn7349f.jpg/)

closeup of the one on the bottom
http://img695.imageshack.us/img695/2152/dscn7350.jpg (http://img695.imageshack.us/i/dscn7350.jpg/)

a shot from the back
http://img834.imageshack.us/img834/943/dscn7351.jpg (http://img834.imageshack.us/i/dscn7351.jpg/)


more updates to come when i have time, the rack isn't finished yet....


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: CanaryInTheMine on August 04, 2011, 12:11:41 AM
Sweet!!!


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: release on August 04, 2011, 01:04:03 AM
only 6 slots on mobo. How you plan to use 8 cards?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: CanaryInTheMine on August 04, 2011, 01:12:09 AM
only 6 slots on mobo. How you plan to use 8 cards?

Since this is a super duper special mobo, it's got new technology on on called AMD AeroTesla which is able to establish a wireless connection to Radeon 5xxx series cards.

How? search the forums for pcie extender cables.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 04, 2011, 01:22:11 AM
only 6 slots on mobo. How you plan to use 8 cards?
lol it actually has 7 slots: 6 pci-e x16 and 1 pci-e x1 on the very top. i think you were just basing what you said on my pics, which is hard to see that top black pci-e x1 slot. here's the newegg link for specs:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130289

i mentioned in my first post that i'll be using 7 cards, not 8. the 7 cards will be on the top, but i just noted that the 8th slot is on the bottom next to the PSU in case i'll ever want to upgrade the mobo to something with 8 slot pci-e


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: mike678 on August 04, 2011, 01:27:39 AM
only 6 slots on mobo. How you plan to use 8 cards?
lol it actually has 7 slots: 6 pci-e x16 and 1 pci-e x1 on the very top. i think you were just basing what you said on my pics, which is hard to see that top black pci-e x1 slot. here's the newegg link for specs:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130289
That still doesn't answer what your doing with the 8th card lol :P


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: CanaryInTheMine on August 04, 2011, 01:31:18 AM
like the man said: for future.  the 8 cards in the pic are to show how it would look like with 8 cards. that's all.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 04, 2011, 01:34:18 AM
That still doesn't answer what your doing with the 8th card lol :P
oh i guess you missed the edit while we both were typing. just to clarify, the MSI big-bang X58 is different than the MSI big bang Marshal:

MSI big bang X58 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130289): 7 pci-e slots, socket 1366, i'll be using this in the build
MSI big bang marshal (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130595): 8 pci-e slots, socket 1155, i dont have this board


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: k9quaint on August 04, 2011, 01:58:36 AM
Nice setup! I know what you mean about "this should only take a couple of hours..."  :D

Do the PSUs draw air in from the top? If so does the motherboard block air flow to them?

Did you find a single rivet strong enough to hold the aluminum angle stock together?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: cicada on August 04, 2011, 02:29:13 AM
Do the PSUs draw air in from the top? If so does the motherboard block air flow to them?

It looks like there's plenty of room between them.  The PSUs can handle quite a lot of heat as well, I think they'll be nice and happy there.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 04, 2011, 03:17:17 AM
Nice setup! I know what you mean about "this should only take a couple of hours..."  :D

Do the PSUs draw air in from the top? If so does the motherboard block air flow to them?

Did you find a single rivet strong enough to hold the aluminum angle stock together?

ya i planned the PSU to pull air facing up. there's a few inches of clearance between the PSU and mobo, so that should be enough room for it to breathe. i haven't drilled screw holes in the frame for the PSU mount yet, so i could always just flip it upside down and let it intake from the very bottom, but then that means i'll have to somehow lift the whole rig an inch so it has breathing room on the bottom. i'm probably not going to do that because that will raise the overall height even more, which i wanted to avoid. i measured everything to be as short as possible.

as for the rivets, i used steel rivets instead of aluminum rivets. a single one at each joint is more than enough to hold everything together. if i used aluminum rivets instead, then i'll have some doubts because i test-lifted the whole frame with 2 PSU, mobo, and 7 GPU's and it's pretty dam heavy.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: wallet.dat on August 04, 2011, 06:54:16 AM
i'll be using a MSI bing bang x58 motherboard, which has 7 pci-e slots.

You should upgrade to the MSI bing bang boom x58, which has 8 pci-e slots.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: airdata on August 04, 2011, 12:54:07 PM
Great build... Looks very good and clean.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: crazy987 on August 04, 2011, 12:59:04 PM
holy fuck :o


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: mikeo on August 04, 2011, 02:05:47 PM
Nice! Any nicer and the Sheetmetal Workers Union will be after you for dues ;-)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 04, 2011, 02:47:15 PM
i will probably copy your design and modify it to fit my needs ;)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: edtks86 on August 04, 2011, 03:15:04 PM
do you have the dimensions for the rack?  :)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: 1.21gigawatts on August 04, 2011, 05:11:51 PM
I am not impressed until you put 7 - 6990s in there.  Just kidding, looks awesome!


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: afro25 on August 04, 2011, 07:04:22 PM
Just had my Big Band Marshal arrive so i'll be doing something similar to this :D

I'm going out to get 7.2m of Angle in the next couple of days so i can build it (I only need 5.25 but can only buy it in strips of 2.4m each lol).



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: m0w3r on August 04, 2011, 08:13:16 PM
Looks nice.  But wouldn't the motherboard flex too much in the middle when you plugin/unplug pcie extenders, for example.  I might like to see more support for the motherboard middle (like plywood, that might ruin the look though), but if you're careful maybe wont be an issue.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: Mousepotato on August 04, 2011, 08:15:32 PM
Looks nice.  But wouldn't the motherboard flex too much in the middle when you plugin/unplug pcie extenders, for example.  I might like to see more support for the motherboard middle (like plywood, that might ruin the look though), but if you're careful maybe wont be an issue.
x1 extenders don't really require that much force to plug in.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 04, 2011, 08:50:35 PM
You should upgrade to the MSI bing bang boom x58, which has 8 pci-e slots.
lol right? the naming of the motherboard is pretty lame haha. "BIG BANG KABOOM" will be the new x79 socket LGA2011 for MSI. it will have 12 pci-e slots  :P. /sarcasm



i will probably copy your design and modify it to fit my needs ;)
it's copyright, there won't be any copying unless you pay me fees. jk. copy all u want, i'm interested to see what variation you come up with. what did you plan to change from the design? be sure to post pics when you have them!



Just had my Big Band Marshal arrive so i'll be doing something similar to this :D
that's crazy, you bought a $400 motherboard for this? it would have been cheaper (including other components like CPU, PSU, etc) if you got 2 separate rigs instead of this one 8-slot motherboard setup.

and just a heads if when you build something like this, you won't be able to fit all 8 GPUs on top when using a standard 17cm riser/extension cable. it's not long enough to reach the two cards and the ends if you leave a slot for cooling between each card. you'll need to break it down to 6-7 cards on top and 1-2 cards on bottom, unless you connect two extension cables together to make them longer.



Looks nice.  But wouldn't the motherboard flex too much in the middle when you plugin/unplug pcie extenders, for example.  I might like to see more support for the motherboard middle (like plywood, that might ruin the look though), but if you're careful maybe wont be an issue.
nope, doesn't flex too much. it might be a problem if the video cards are directly on the motherboard and weighing it down, but since i'm using extension cables, they hardly weigh anything. the CPU cooler weighs the most, but i'm not using a huge tower cooler or anything. there's nothing else on the motherboard to push it down, so flex won't be a problem. haha it doesn't take hercules to plug in the extension cables, so that won't be a problem either


ps- this forum needs a multi-quote button. i just had to manually quote everyone in this one post


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: BTC_Junkie on August 04, 2011, 09:13:19 PM
Awesome, would definitely be interested in dimensions of build you made.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 04, 2011, 09:52:38 PM
i will probably copy your design and modify it to fit my needs ;)
it's copyright, there won't be any copying unless you pay me fees. jk. copy all u want, i'm interested to see what variation you come up with. what did you plan to change from the design? be sure to post pics when you have them!


Sure ;)

I want to make it suitable for 2 motherboards in line and up to 12 gfx cards, so just longer (aproxx. 1- 1.2m lenght), with a closed bottom (another L shaped alu bar at the bottom back for stability) and a bottom plexiglass plate where the psu's can rest on. all this will make a stable skeleton structure where i will build a simple encasing around (probably made of cheap wood) with included fans for proper air exchange to put it on my balcony (also my balcony has good weather protection, the casing still must be wind and rain proof)




Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: afro25 on August 04, 2011, 10:15:25 PM



that's crazy, you bought a $400 motherboard for this? it would have been cheaper (including other components like CPU, PSU, etc) if you got 2 separate rigs instead of this one 8-slot motherboard setup.

and just a heads if when you build something like this, you won't be able to fit all 8 GPUs on top when using a standard 17cm riser/extension cable. it's not long enough to reach the two cards and the ends if you leave a slot for cooling between each card. you'll need to break it down to 6-7 cards on top and 1-2 cards on bottom, unless you connect two extension cables together to make them longer.

[/quote]

I totalled up all the costs and it's not actually that much dearer in total, it is more expensive but for the amount i'd save i'd rather have it all in one system and not have to spend an entire day building a rack lol.

I have some spare riser cables so i can fit 8 cards on the top length with an inch between each :)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 04, 2011, 10:21:52 PM
here are some closeup shots of little details you might want to see

the top bar is tapped with threads to fit the regular computer screws. this is to secure down the cards from moving around. i just measured and drilled holes into the bars, then just used the actual screws to make the threads directly into the aluminum. this freakin took like 2 hours  :-\
http://img811.imageshack.us/img811/9536/dscn7352.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/811/dscn7352.jpg/)

http://img84.imageshack.us/img84/7774/dscn7353f.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/84/dscn7353f.jpg/)

here's what i used as motherboard standoffs to raise the motherboard from the aluminum frame. drilled a hole in the frame, then put a long screw from the bottom up. a washer and nut was put on top to secure the screw, and also act to raise the motherboard up.
http://img38.imageshack.us/img38/7572/dscn7363e.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/38/dscn7363e.jpg/)

the excess end of the screw sticking up through the motherboard holes prevents the motherboard from moving around.
http://img546.imageshack.us/img546/3533/dscn7362n.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/546/dscn7362n.jpg/)

pic is a little blurry, but it's just to show that an optional nut can be added on top of everything to bolt down the motherboard. i won't be adding this extra nut in the final build since the screw is long enough
http://img593.imageshack.us/img593/5149/dscn7361.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/593/dscn7361.jpg/)

here's a random nice little froggy in my back yard watching me when i was building this rack
http://img641.imageshack.us/img641/160/dscn7325t.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/641/dscn7325t.jpg/)


so i ran into a couple problems when doing this build, and i'll post that next time i have pics up


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: CanaryInTheMine on August 04, 2011, 10:38:27 PM
Did you name the frog Mr. "Rig Marshall"?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 08, 2011, 05:40:42 AM
problems i ran into:

1) stock CPU cooler is too tall. i originally used a socket 775 board with the stock cooler to do all my measurements, and the height i cut the rack into was a perfect fit. however, i didn't realize that a stock s1366 cooler was considerably taller. The pci-e extension cables didn't have enough clearance because the cooler blocks it.

2) the bar that holds up the rear end of the GPUs were about 6 millimeters short because the little PCB "hook" towards the end of the pci-e pins of the video card, got in the way of this bar.

here you can see how the video card's pci-e pins are very close to the cooler, and this is not enough room to plug in the extension cables. these cables take up a few centimeters of space below the video card's pins.
http://img828.imageshack.us/img828/7890/dscn7356u.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/828/dscn7356u.jpg/)

solution: i bought a 1U low profile s1366 cooler. it just came in, here's what it looks like installed on the motherboard.
http://img820.imageshack.us/img820/350/dscn7369.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/820/dscn7369.jpg/)

ahh, perfect...
http://img24.imageshack.us/img24/4784/dscn7366q.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/24/dscn7366q.jpg/)

now the second problem, the bar holding the video card is too close, so the video doesn't have enough clearance to be mounted properly. solution: i drilled out rivets on both sides, made 2 new holes to move two bars back about 6mm, which is just enough clearance.
http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/4273/dscn7370v.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/232/dscn7370v.jpg/)

that PCB "hook" now has enough clearance
http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/2809/dscn7371z.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/717/dscn7371z.jpg/)

a few more mods to come before it's finished


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: edtks86 on August 08, 2011, 09:05:15 AM
What cpu cooler is that? Looks sick



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: zx9r on August 08, 2011, 11:32:03 AM
here's a random nice little froggy in my back yard watching me when i was building this rack
http://img641.imageshack.us/img641/160/dscn7325t.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/641/dscn7325t.jpg/)


It seems a Bufo viridis, so you would probably live in Europe, most probably North-East Europe  ;)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 08, 2011, 07:43:11 PM
What cpu cooler is that? Looks sick
small request, can you please edit out your post to take out the quotes? quoting all the pictures like this to just reply with a small phrase takes up forum space, especially when i already posted all of that right on top of your post

and to answer your question, it's a rosewill or dynatron 1U low profile cooler, designed for servers. this thing sounds like a jet engine...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835200058
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835114085




It seems a Bufo viridis, so you would probably live in Europe, most probably North-East Europe  ;)
would you mind editing out the pic as well? and actually you're waaay off lol. i'm located in the US, southern california to be exact  ;)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: zx9r on August 08, 2011, 09:45:29 PM
LOL, so what kind of frog is it ?  ???


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: naypalm on August 09, 2011, 02:54:33 AM
Awesome setup! Can't wait to see it finished!


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: Inedible on August 09, 2011, 12:25:43 PM
I'm trying to build your rig but I can't find a frog like this.

Where else can I find one? Can I substitute it for a toad?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 09, 2011, 04:38:34 PM
started the work today, this will offer room for 2 mainboards and up to 12 gfx-cards. now I will start to drill the holes for the rivets.

first pictures:

http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/6348/overviewui.jpg
overview to get the idea.
the metal bars are 25x25x1.5mm L bars made of aluminium, each had a lenght of 200cm.
for the Proxxon (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28481.php (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28481.php) , http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28606.php (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28606.php) better than a Dremel)
I do have metal cutting discs, but without a proper working bench it was easier to simply use the strong metal saw.
I use two types of steel rivets for double and triple layer aluminium.


http://img204.imageshack.us/img204/8439/tools1.jpg
closeup of some tools


http://img17.imageshack.us/img17/7624/proxxon.jpg
closeup of the Proxxon.
I use a 3mm metal drill to drill the holes for the screws like for the gfx-card holder and the mainboard holder, and a 3.1mm drill for the 3mm steel rivets.
5000 rpm.
standard M3 screws (like the one from a regular Computer Case, the ones used to screw the PCI-E cards onto the case) can perfectly cut into the 3mm aluminium holes.


http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/8890/holesp.jpg
closeup of the Gfx-Card holder. perfect fit!



more to come..



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 09, 2011, 08:55:24 PM
LOL, so what kind of frog is it ?  ???
no idea, i'm not a frog expert, and neither are you judging from your way off guess about the frog's origin of location  :D



I'm trying to build your rig but I can't find a frog like this.

Where else can I find one? Can I substitute it for a toad?
you definitely need a frog for this build, a toad wouldn't work, although a crocodile might be ok...



Awesome setup! Can't wait to see it finished!
i had a little more time to work on it, almost done. i'll post up update pictures in a bit



started the work today, this will offer room for 2 mainboards and up to 12 gfx-cards. now I will start to drill the holes for the rivets.

first pictures:
[*pic*]
overview to get the idea.
the metal bars are 25x25x1.5mm L bars made of aluminium, each had a lenght of 200cm.
for the Proxxon (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28481.php (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28481.php) , http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28606.php (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/28606.php) better than a Dremel)
I do have metal cutting discs, but without a proper working bench it was easier to simply use the strong metal saw.
I use two types of steel rivets for double and triple layer aluminium.

[*picture*]
closeup of some tools

[*picture*]
closeup of the Proxxon.
I use a 3mm metal drill to drill the holes for the screws like for the gfx-card holder and the mainboard holder, and a 3.1mm drill for the 3mm steel rivets.
5000 rpm.
standard M3 screws (like the one from a regular Computer Case, the ones used to screw the PCI-E cards onto the case) can perfectly cut into the 3mm aluminium holes.

[*picture*]
closeup of the Gfx-Card holder. perfect fit!
looks like very clean cuts and drilled holes! i wish i had that thingy that holds the dremel/proxxon, it would have made drilling the rivet holes and screw threads so much easier. i did it by free-hand with a dremel, which was a pain in the arse. how is a proxxon better than a dremel?

waiting to see how yours turns out as well....


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: cicada on August 09, 2011, 09:07:42 PM
i wish i had that thingy that holds the dremel/proxxon

I <3 the interwebs.

http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-220-01-Rotary-Tool-Station/dp/B00068P48O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1312923977&sr=8-1



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 09, 2011, 10:50:10 PM

looks like very clean cuts and drilled holes! i wish i had that thingy that holds the dremel/proxxon, it would have made drilling the rivet holes and screw threads so much easier. i did it by free-hand with a dremel, which was a pain in the arse. how is a proxxon better than a dremel?

waiting to see how yours turns out as well....

thanks! also i had to do some free-hand work, too, but i found a way to handle the drill. the Proxxon has a better build quality than the dremel and is usually used in the industry in germany.
now I know at least that it is best to first drill all holes and then rivet it together, instead of not being able to get into the corner after you nailed them ^^

here are more pics, as you can see it's not all that clean cut and not all angles are 90° - but this is my first piece of metalwork, i think it works out.

to do: drilling the holes for the motherboard-screws, getting a wooden or plexiglass bottom where the psu's can rest on, build a cover of wood or plexiglass with fans to put the whole thing outside on my balcony ^^

hardware is a placeholder ;)


http://i52.tinypic.com/2mgk2hg.jpg

http://i51.tinypic.com/4exj8.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/10yjo61.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/2r2xkpz.jpg

http://i53.tinypic.com/x255pc.jpg


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 09, 2011, 11:34:12 PM
I <3 the interwebs.

http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-220-01-Rotary-Tool-Station/dp/B00068P48O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1312923977&sr=8-1
yeah i saw that at my local hardware store too, but i couldn't justify the price for something i won't use much. i bought my dremel on sale for less than that  ;D.


thanks! also i had to do some free-hand work, too, but i found a way to handle the drill. the Proxxon has a better build quality than the dremel and is usually used in the industry in germany.
now I know at least that it is best to first drill all holes and then rivet it together, instead of not being able to get into the corner after you nailed them ^^

here are more pics, as you can see it's not all that clean cut and not all angles are 90° - but this is my first piece of metalwork, i think it works out.
it looks like a really stretched version of mine haha. i had plan everything out first, then drilled all rivet holes before i put anything together, because after the pieces are together, it'll be harder to drill. i can see some of your holes are not perfectly lined up  :D, i had that problem on a few of my holes as well


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 13, 2011, 09:56:09 PM
finally had time to get some more work done this weekend. i'll post up the pics in a bit


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 13, 2011, 11:14:50 PM
the top left corner of the motherboard has an offset mounting hole that is not above the frame, so i was not able to screw in some standoffs for this hole. instead, i just drilled a hole in the frame for a rivet, washer, and small black rubber piece to support the motherboard's top left corner. the motherboard doesn't actually screw down in the area, it just rests on top of this rubber disk
http://img225.imageshack.us/img225/3518/dscn7374.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/225/dscn7374.jpg/)

i cut a steel bar and added it to the bottom of the frame to support the front end of the PSU. after all the computer hardware is installed, everything will now be on top of the frame, so i can just lift it all up and move it if i have to. nothing rests on the ground anymore. i also drilled some holes for the two PSUs to screw into the frame
http://img543.imageshack.us/img543/9624/dscn7375.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/543/dscn7375.jpg/)

drilled some holes for a 2.5" hard drive
http://img716.imageshack.us/img716/5458/dscn7376m.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/716/dscn7376m.jpg/)

the two PSU's mounted and screwed in
http://img6.imageshack.us/img6/237/dscn7378.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/6/dscn7378.jpg/)

you can see the 2.5" hard drive mounted behind one of the rear "legs". all the ugly blue labeling stickers were taken off at this point
http://img710.imageshack.us/img710/5071/dscn7377u.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/710/dscn7377u.jpg/)

the 2.5" hard drive i used is a 1000rpm WD velociraptor. yeah i know... it's overkill but it was a spare drive i had at the time
http://img708.imageshack.us/img708/1676/dscn7379.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/708/dscn7379.jpg/)

PSU, motherboard, and hard drive mounted
http://img594.imageshack.us/img594/2223/dscn7380a.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/594/dscn7380a.jpg/)

a view from the other side
http://img685.imageshack.us/img685/7036/dscn7382v.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/685/dscn7382v.jpg/)




@ stellan0r: i just saw pics of your rack. it's going to look like a beast with 12 cards mounted on top. how many PSU are you going to put on the bottom?

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=7216.msg453266#msg453266


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: PiGames on August 13, 2011, 11:26:40 PM
This rig looks amazing.
I'd love to put together something like this but I think I'd get to much grief from the 'woman'
I finally upgrade my machine (3 cards) but guided it as upgrading for my games. I run the thing 24/7, it's loud as hell and literally looks like an old server box ( newegg IWIN gaming tower it's huge).
Maybe I'll try to put something like this together.

When it's all build you should def update with some specs (watt draw/ total m(g)hash/ heat , yadda yadda) definitely looks like a fun project


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: BTC_Junkie on August 14, 2011, 02:09:09 AM
Love watching this, keep the updates coming!


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: mikeo on August 14, 2011, 02:33:48 AM
@haploid23,

I hope you have planned well regarding the electrical supply. Sounds like you may live in an apartment. If so, I'd be concerned about available circuits to support the power draw from a 6xGPU rig. Just saying.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 14, 2011, 07:36:42 AM
@haploid23,

I hope you have planned well regarding the electrical supply. Sounds like you may live in an apartment. If so, I'd be concerned about available circuits to support the power draw from a 6xGPU rig. Just saying.

LOL where do you live?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 14, 2011, 07:46:31 AM

@ stellan0r: i just saw pics of your rack. it's going to look like a beast with 12 cards mounted on top. how many PSU are you going to put on the bottom?

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=7216.msg453266#msg453266

Thanks!
I will replace my corsair GS800 and HX850 with two Enermax MaxRevo 1500 PSU's for best efficiency (>90%!). (also I need only 2.4 kW for 12 GPUs, not 3 kW.)

I probably have to reduce the setup to 10-11 cards, as I made the same mistake with the height of the CPU cooler. Also it's low profile, the pci-e riser cable blocks the fan. Maybe I can fix that with some cable binder. If I want to spend that much money, I will solve that problem with a Corsair Hydro Series H70 Water Cooling System.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: catfish on August 14, 2011, 03:04:05 PM
Absolutely awesome stuff gentlemen. Looks like the hardware dick-swinging contest of 'who has the most/fastest GPUs' is being beaten by a new 'who can design and build the finest open frame rig'  :D

Do we have 'ze German engineerz' on board here? Stellan0r - your 'better than a Dremel' quote suggests you're German or have heritage. There's no way anyone will beat that :) (nb. I'm English, and you can all laugh at my open frame rigs, which are early efforts using wood and angle-aluminium - some very English-engineering 'pragmatism over dogma' touches in there, haha - mine in the other thread)

One thing I note for next efforts is the use of rivets. My early angle-ally effort simply used a 3mm drill and self-tapping screws to hold aluminium to other aluminium pieces, or 'Super Screws' (as my local hardware superstore calls them, for some reason) to fix angle ally to the wooden base. Whilst these worked, up to a point, they simply don't look anywhere NEAR as good as these frames.

Like both of you, I used a 3 mm drill for the GPU card fixings - a steel expansion card screw has strong enough thread to self-tap into soft 1mm aluminium, in my experience up to 5 holes before the thread gets worn. Messing up a thread (so the GPU screws turn without resistance) is more of a pain than discarding a sacrificial 'tap' screw, so I used each screw for 4 holes in my second frame before discarding and getting a fresh one. A proper tap would be ideal, but I don't run a machine shop :)


Last thing - even stellan0r's 'der Ingenieur' approach shows some torsion along the frame lateral axis (viewing head on). I also had trouble getting the 'top frame' completely aligned with the reference rectangle of my wooden base - it's easily visible in the pics since the two frames are both flat on the same base, and the aluminium uprights are clearly out of true on both frames. This was due to the twist in the top frame, not poor fixings on the uprights.

Anyone know of an easy solution to this? I suppose the only proper way to build a frame with no distortion is to use a jig of some sort, or to avoid freehand drilling and riveting by using pre-drilled lengths of metal (like Meccano!! assuming everyone knows what this is...) and just *bolting* the frame together at specific points.

I wanted to take this approach, to be honest - but I couldn't find appropriate materials in my local hardware stores. Angle aluminium is easy to find and easy to work with, but the 'big boy's Meccano' didn't seem to exist...


Great work though - really impressed :)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: catfish on August 14, 2011, 03:23:33 PM
Actually - posting again - just thought of something.

Be VERY aware that these high-density frame rigs will end up with a fairly large power density. The approaches here (even compared to my dual-PSU dual-mobo 'evolution 2' open frame) seem very focused on minimising floor area, and stacking PSUs, logic boards and then GPUs in a neat tower.

As per the pics in the other thread of my two frame rigs, I'm pulling around 2kW from the wall. This is in England, and our 240V supply and typical 13W fused sockets *theoretically* should allow a 3kW load on one cable. However, older properties and poor cable choice may make this marginal - extension cabling must be nice fat stuff... my 10A old extension cable was very hot to the touch after a few hours supplying my rigs... I changed it as soon as I did the calculations, and the house hasn't burnt down yet.

Theoretically I could put a separate ring main in purely for my miners but that'd be overkill, and remind me again that my old house needs an overhaul and upgrade of its ancient electricals (it's a Victorian place... bakelite fuses, etc.) :(


With a high power density like that - 2-3 kW dissipated in a compact volume - care must be taken over removal of waste heat. Computer kit like this is a very efficient converter of electrical energy to heat energy, so even at 75% you've got 1.5 to 2.25 kW of pure heat to dissipate. That's a very respectable electric space-heater output.

My two rigs are very poorly engineered compared to these, and didn't take cooling into consideration until the end. A large desk fan blows air across the two rigs, but the second rig's GPUs still run up to 80˚C.


I'd respectfully suggest that both of your frame designs should be evolved to incorporate some sort of built-in cooling - the high power density will be too much for pure convection to handle, and IMO the usual computer-kit case fans won't move enough air to make sense.

My next design will incorporate a box fan built into the frame at the rear - however both of your designs would need significant adaptation to incorporate an appropriately-placed frame-width fan (it's best placed behind the GPUs, blowing air along their length).


Or do you all think that convection will be enough - or a non-integrated solution like my large desk fan? With 7 GPUs (especially powerful ones) in a smaller volume than even ONE of my frame rigs (my first frame has 4 GPUs, the second has 6 - and there are quite a few lame 5770s in there), I'd say that power density would put substantial limitations on the speed you can run the GPUs at... what do you all think?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: Inedible on August 14, 2011, 07:06:06 PM
As per the pics in the other thread of my two frame rigs, I'm pulling around 2kW from the wall. This is in England, and our 240V supply and typical 13W fused sockets *theoretically* should allow a 3kW load on one cable. However, older properties and poor cable choice may make this marginal - extension cabling must be nice fat stuff... my 10A old extension cable was very hot to the touch after a few hours supplying my rigs... I changed it as soon as I did the calculations, and the house hasn't burnt down yet.

You should be able to get 3.1kW on one FUSE (in the plug in the UK). In a modern home, the cabling for a double socket will accept up to 26A.

You shouldn't be able to cause damage to wiring in the walls as these will be protected at your fusebox.





Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 14, 2011, 07:27:05 PM
Hey catfish, yes I am from Germany :) But I am everything but an engineer, this was my very first approach to work with metal ever.

I start with the last things you mentioned, the heat:

I plan on putting this outside on my balcony (which is pretty well protected already against the weather and only open to the upper front), with a rain/snow/direct sun proof enclosure that will have enough openings (also protected against weather with these http://www.ventilator-shop.com/zubehor-fur-die-ventilatoren/rohrkrummers/rohrkrummer-90/ (http://www.ventilator-shop.com/zubehor-fur-die-ventilatoren/rohrkrummers/rohrkrummer-90/) and some fine mesh against dust and insects) for enough fans. I will drill as many 108mm holes (with a Starrett holesaw - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Starrett-Sh0414-Speed-Steel-Holesaw/dp/B0002JT6X6/ref=sr_1_2?s=diy&ie=UTF8&qid=1313349705&sr=1-2 (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Starrett-Sh0414-Speed-Steel-Holesaw/dp/B0002JT6X6/ref=sr_1_2?s=diy&ie=UTF8&qid=1313349705&sr=1-2) into the enclosure as necessary and mount 120mm fans on the inside, in push pull order (from the back and side-bottom it will push air in, on the front and top front where the gpu's blast their hot air I will mount them to pull air out).

Anyway, the amount of GPU's in my rig will be determined by "how the market goes" in the next months ;)

IF the market does what I want it to do, I will put some money into a powerful watercooling system. This is pretty expensive, as the basics cost about 150 Euro in quality parts + 60-100 Euro per GPU.. But it would cool the system and I could even put it back inside without having a terrible noise pollution but an efficient space heater ;) (and in the end it will have wheels, so I can just shut them down, pull the plug, move it somewhere else, plug it back and so on)

Power is not a problem here, I have a 16A (3.6kW) fuse available to nearly 100% just for the rig (for whatever reason the smallest room in my apt. with the least power consumption has it's own fuse, where my living room with all the stuff shares the fuse with the floor where I put the vacuum cleaner in o.O). My building is pretty new and has good cabling, though.

In my frame is some torsion, this is simply because I didn't do exact measurements in the beginning with the first bars I put together - if I would have to build another one, I would know better what to do in which order, and I would take my time to make the edges more smooth. But I just wanted to put this thing together ;)
I would also use a mix of wood (for the outer structure that does not come in contact with any hardware) and metal then, because the wood is easier to work with and the metal would be only used for parts that need to carry the computer stuff.

Pre-drilled lengths of metal would be nice to have, anyway ;)  

But as soon as I get this one http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/27100.php (http://www.proxxon.com/eng/html/27100.php) (for my drill stand) accuracy in drilling the holes will not be a problem anymore  8)




Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 15, 2011, 04:22:48 AM
This rig looks amazing.
...

When it's all build you should def update with some specs (watt draw/ total m(g)hash/ heat , yadda yadda) definitely looks like a fun project
thanks! yup, will do. hardware specs, speed, and temps will all be posted once it's finished


I hope you have planned well regarding the electrical supply. Sounds like you may live in an apartment. If so, I'd be concerned about available circuits to support the power draw from a 6xGPU rig. Just saying.
lol why do you think i live in an apartment? hard wood floors, big tile kitchens, backyard, etc... don't think an apartment has that  ;). i'm at my house for the summer, but i will however move back to my apartment when school starts, although this rig will stay at the house. the room that i host all these miners has a 15amp breaker, i'm able to put 2 full miners with 4 GPU's each, i tried adding a 3rd one and trips the circuit breaker. i guess this 7-GPU rig will be the only one in the room, all other miners will be moved somewhere else.


I probably have to reduce the setup to 10-11 cards, as I made the same mistake with the height of the CPU cooler. Also it's low profile, the pci-e riser cable blocks the fan. Maybe I can fix that with some cable binder. If I want to spend that much money, I will solve that problem with a Corsair Hydro Series H70 Water Cooling System.
hmm you didn't learn from my mistake huh? i also made the mistake of the making the the bars that support the GPUs too low, so some of the pci-e extender cables hits the CPU fan. i posted about it and took pics. you should also get a similar low profile cooler like i did. not only is it very low profile (1U), the fan is also totally encased so you don't have to worry about any cables getting caught in it.

man... you and catfish sure typed a lot haha


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: plastic.elastic on August 17, 2011, 04:21:26 PM
This rig looks amazing.
...

When it's all build you should def update with some specs (watt draw/ total m(g)hash/ heat , yadda yadda) definitely looks like a fun project
thanks! yup, will do. hardware specs, speed, and temps will all be posted once it's finished


I hope you have planned well regarding the electrical supply. Sounds like you may live in an apartment. If so, I'd be concerned about available circuits to support the power draw from a 6xGPU rig. Just saying.
lol why do you think i live in an apartment? hard wood floors, big tile kitchens, backyard, etc... don't think an apartment has that  ;). i'm at my house for the summer, but i will however move back to my apartment when school starts, although this rig will stay at the house. the room that i host all these miners has a 15amp breaker, i'm able to put 2 full miners with 4 GPU's each, i tried adding a 3rd one and trips the circuit breaker. i guess this 7-GPU rig will be the only one in the room, all other miners will be moved somewhere else.


I probably have to reduce the setup to 10-11 cards, as I made the same mistake with the height of the CPU cooler. Also it's low profile, the pci-e riser cable blocks the fan. Maybe I can fix that with some cable binder. If I want to spend that much money, I will solve that problem with a Corsair Hydro Series H70 Water Cooling System.
hmm you didn't learn from my mistake huh? i also made the mistake of the making the the bars that support the GPUs too low, so some of the pci-e extender cables hits the CPU fan. i posted about it and took pics. you should also get a similar low profile cooler like i did. not only is it very low profile (1U), the fan is also totally encased so you don't have to worry about any cables getting caught in it.

man... you and catfish sure typed a lot haha

Hi OP,

please update on the power consumption and how you distribute the power to the cards.

I know you can use an adapter to turn on the second PSU, but from what that means the second PSU would have no load on other rails (3.3v and 5v ) correct? Is that not recommended tho? Let me know if you have know other way

Also it would be great if we can pull all the 12v wires from the PSU to power the cards (atx connector, eps, p4 12v, molex). Are there any online store we can get these common connectores? (male one)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: mikeo on August 18, 2011, 01:45:46 AM
@haploid23,

I hope you have planned well regarding the electrical supply. Sounds like you may live in an apartment. If so, I'd be concerned about available circuits to support the power draw from a 6xGPU rig. Just saying.

LOL where do you live?
Santa Fe, New Mexico. I've got a 100ft wiring run on a 15amp circuit and when I added my miner to that circuit with another gaming rig, printer, couple of routers and a switch I had the dreaded VD! Yes, voltage drop down to ~105 volts which resulted in a very unstable mining platform.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: catfish on August 18, 2011, 01:53:16 PM
I know you can use an adapter to turn on the second PSU, but from what that means the second PSU would have no load on other rails (3.3v and 5v ) correct? Is that not recommended tho? Let me know if you have know other way

Also it would be great if we can pull all the 12v wires from the PSU to power the cards (atx connector, eps, p4 12v, molex). Are there any online store we can get these common connectores? (male one)

Plastic - I found this blog post helpful when investigating my questions about why some GPUs aren't recognised when plugged into x1 slots with extenders. His GPGPU rig has four 5970s, sucking down well over 1000W via two 560W PSUs, and since the smaller server-grade PSUs aren't targeted at the 'extreme gamer' community, they didn't come with loads of PCIe power cables. So he contrived a methodology to convert any PSU's output wiring into multiple PCIe power cables for graphics cards. May be just what you're looking for?

http://blog.zorinaq.com/?e=42 (http://blog.zorinaq.com/?e=42)



Hey catfish, yes I am from Germany :) But I am everything but an engineer, this was my very first approach to work with metal ever.
Scheiße - I've just ended up replacing my sorry excuse of a drill for a proper German one - a Bosch... the last one wasn't straight and the drill bit would wiggle round in a small circle. :D The Bosch drill is obviously so much better quality, I'm looking forward to using it. I don't know how to use rivets though, that's the next step as it'd really tidy up my aluminium frame designs. Did you learn from someone else (if this was your first attempt at metalwork), or do you know a good website with practical instruction on the best way to do riveting (i.e. steel rivets in aluminium)?

(and there goes a week's worth of mining... luckily the Bosch drill was half price!) ;D


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stellan0r on August 18, 2011, 03:33:25 PM

Scheiße - I've just ended up replacing my sorry excuse of a drill for a proper German one - a Bosch... the last one wasn't straight and the drill bit would wiggle round in a small circle. :D The Bosch drill is obviously so much better quality, I'm looking forward to using it. I don't know how to use rivets though, that's the next step as it'd really tidy up my aluminium frame designs. Did you learn from someone else (if this was your first attempt at metalwork), or do you know a good website with practical instruction on the best way to do riveting (i.e. steel rivets in aluminium)?

(and there goes a week's worth of mining... luckily the Bosch drill was half price!) ;D


I got a small Bosch IXO for as an electric srewdriver, lots of power for such a small tool :)

About the metal work, it was simply learning by doing and looking at the pictures of the OP. A handy guide for using a riveting tool is this:

http://www.hansonrivet.com/w13.htm (http://www.hansonrivet.com/w13.htm)

take a look at my pictures to see what type of tool I am using. Then use steel rivets, with 3 or 4mm diameter. You need to drill a hole for those that is 0.1mm bigger than the rivet, so you need a 3.1 or 4.1 mm drill. also don't forget to look at the length of the rivet, mine are for materials of 1-3mm, 3-6mm or 6-9mm thickness (choose appropriate to the thickness of the material you want to put together (and if you have to put two 1.5mm thick alu bars together, use a 1-3mm rivet, not a 3-6mm long!)



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 19, 2011, 09:33:05 AM
Hi OP,

please update on the power consumption and how you distribute the power to the cards.

I know you can use an adapter to turn on the second PSU, but from what that means the second PSU would have no load on other rails (3.3v and 5v ) correct? Is that not recommended tho? Let me know if you have know other way

Also it would be great if we can pull all the 12v wires from the PSU to power the cards (atx connector, eps, p4 12v, molex). Are there any online store we can get these common connectores? (male one)

ya i'll update all that info once it's finished and finalized. but for now, i have 5x 5870 on there just to test it. i have a seasonic 750w and a cougar 700w PSU, the seasonic 750w powers the motherboard's main 24pin and CPU power, as well as 3 GPUs. the cougar PSU powers the addition 6-pin power connector on the motherboard for the extra pci-e juice, as well as GPUs. i'm not sure if there are adapters for the CPU power cable to 6-pin pci-e cable. using the CPU power cable to power the video cards is good utilization of excess 12v line, assuming that the PSU is multi rail. if there's no adapters, you can just connect all the yellow wires together i believe


Santa Fe, New Mexico. I've got a 100ft wiring run on a 15amp circuit and when I added my miner to that circuit with another gaming rig, printer, couple of routers and a switch I had the dreaded VD! Yes, voltage drop down to ~105 volts which resulted in a very unstable mining platform.
my kill-a-watt meter says my voltage drops down to about 115v off the wall. what's an acceptable AC voltage so that it doesn't go unstable?


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: BkkCoins on August 19, 2011, 12:14:04 PM
my kill-a-watt meter says my voltage drops down to about 115v off the wall. what's an acceptable AC voltage so that it doesn't go unstable?
Many of the better PSU have specs on input voltage from 90-240 VAC. I'd expect that means they can work fine down to 90V input. Switching supplies are not so sensitive to input voltage when designed to work with a usable range.

Of course, power is power, so a lower input voltage means a higher current draw. For a long line you're much better off with 240 VAC as the current loss will be less. And of course thicker cable makes a big difference.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: plastic.elastic on August 21, 2011, 05:49:12 AM
Hi OP,

please update on the power consumption and how you distribute the power to the cards.

I know you can use an adapter to turn on the second PSU, but from what that means the second PSU would have no load on other rails (3.3v and 5v ) correct? Is that not recommended tho? Let me know if you have know other way

Also it would be great if we can pull all the 12v wires from the PSU to power the cards (atx connector, eps, p4 12v, molex). Are there any online store we can get these common connectores? (male one)

ya i'll update all that info once it's finished and finalized. but for now, i have 5x 5870 on there just to test it. i have a seasonic 750w and a cougar 700w PSU, the seasonic 750w powers the motherboard's main 24pin and CPU power, as well as 3 GPUs. the cougar PSU powers the addition 6-pin power connector on the motherboard for the extra pci-e juice, as well as GPUs. i'm not sure if there are adapters for the CPU power cable to 6-pin pci-e cable. using the CPU power cable to power the video cards is good utilization of excess 12v line, assuming that the PSU is multi rail. if there's no adapters, you can just connect all the yellow wires together i believe



Dont be confused, my concern has nothing to do with single rail or multi rails. Lots of ppl thought with single rail PSU, they can plug as many devices as they want. Thats asking for a failure.

My concern is because i dont know a store that sell connectors so i can better redesign the power distribution. So far only 4pin molex connectors are common, all other connectors are very rare,



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: plastic.elastic on August 21, 2011, 05:52:08 AM
my kill-a-watt meter says my voltage drops down to about 115v off the wall. what's an acceptable AC voltage so that it doesn't go unstable?
Many of the better PSU have specs on input voltage from 90-240 VAC. I'd expect that means they can work fine down to 90V input. Switching supplies are not so sensitive to input voltage when designed to work with a usable range.

Of course, power is power, so a lower input voltage means a higher current draw. For a long line you're much better off with 240 VAC as the current loss will be less. And of course thicker cable makes a big difference.

You wouldnt want the voltage drop below 100v, or your PSU will be overheated = toasted.



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: plastic.elastic on August 21, 2011, 05:53:06 AM
I know you can use an adapter to turn on the second PSU, but from what that means the second PSU would have no load on other rails (3.3v and 5v ) correct? Is that not recommended tho? Let me know if you have know other way

Also it would be great if we can pull all the 12v wires from the PSU to power the cards (atx connector, eps, p4 12v, molex). Are there any online store we can get these common connectores? (male one)

Plastic - I found this blog post helpful when investigating my questions about why some GPUs aren't recognised when plugged into x1 slots with extenders. His GPGPU rig has four 5970s, sucking down well over 1000W via two 560W PSUs, and since the smaller server-grade PSUs aren't targeted at the 'extreme gamer' community, they didn't come with loads of PCIe power cables. So he contrived a methodology to convert any PSU's output wiring into multiple PCIe power cables for graphics cards. May be just what you're looking for?


Thanks but that didnt asnwer my question AT ALL.

Hint, my question is the sentence with a question mark!



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: BkkCoins on August 21, 2011, 07:37:07 AM
I'm sure digikey.com will have those connectors but trying to find it will be hard without a part # or at least a manufacturer.

It may help to find a PCI Express spec page that indicates a mfr. part# first.

Googling: pci express power connector turns up some (http://www.google.com/products/catalog?client=ubuntu&channel=fs&oe=utf-8&q=pci+express+power+connector&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=7247854542493788615&sa=X&ei=tLVQTsWfCob3rQezyNWsAg&ved=0CEEQ8wIwBA),

Also it turns up this spec (http://www.molex.com/molex/products/family?key=graphics_power&channel=products&chanName=family&pageTitle=Introduction) which gives you the part# for digikey.

... seems digikey doesn't carry that series but mouser (http://th.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?qs=%2FFAXCdFYqP5%252b9357MWKI9g%3D%3D) does and they should be easy to order from.

31 cents each.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: newunit16 on August 21, 2011, 05:26:45 PM
I run two PSU's. 530w and 620w (around that) to power 4x 5830's. Pulls about 720w from the wall.

Yes, it is not a good idea to run the PSU without the 5v rails loaded. The second PSU wouldnt even boot without putting a load on the 5v. SOO, I plugged it into the hard drive:) Problem solved.

For about 10-15$ you can get a handy 2xPSU adapter from frozenCPU. Yeah, its dead simple to splice, but why splice and lower the "resale" or "re-use" value?

You could also use some heavy resistors on the 5v rail. This is what they do when they're making a CPU PSU into a bench PSU. (See sandbar resistor)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: plastic.elastic on August 21, 2011, 08:21:42 PM
I'm sure digikey.com will have those connectors but trying to find it will be hard without a part # or at least a manufacturer.

It may help to find a PCI Express spec page that indicates a mfr. part# first.

Googling: pci express power connector turns up some (http://www.google.com/products/catalog?client=ubuntu&channel=fs&oe=utf-8&q=pci+express+power+connector&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=7247854542493788615&sa=X&ei=tLVQTsWfCob3rQezyNWsAg&ved=0CEEQ8wIwBA),

Also it turns up this spec (http://www.molex.com/molex/products/family?key=graphics_power&channel=products&chanName=family&pageTitle=Introduction) which gives you the part# for digikey.

... seems digikey doesn't carry that series but mouser (http://th.mouser.com/Search/ProductDetail.aspx?qs=%2FFAXCdFYqP5%252b9357MWKI9g%3D%3D) does and they should be easy to order from.

31 cents each.

I have searched and gosh, the damn connector is sure not easy to go. You will have to get those square pins as well...

I think i will stick with my original plan, which is using the 4pin molex connectors, essentially turns the PSU to modular and buy molex to pci-r connectors as needed. More resistance = less efficient but probably cheapest and easier to do.



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on August 24, 2011, 08:06:09 AM
ok it's pretty much done, i just have to connect all the wires and power it on.

i shorted the two presence pins with a small wire on each of the pci-e slots. this motherboard requires it if using pci-e x1 extension cables.
http://img535.imageshack.us/img535/2691/dscn7389v.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/535/dscn7389v.jpg/)

rear view
http://img706.imageshack.us/img706/8158/dscn7391.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/706/dscn7391.jpg/)

top view
http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/5710/dscn7396.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/853/dscn7396.jpg/)

front view
http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/5173/dscn7397.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/163/dscn7397.jpg/)

side view
http://img577.imageshack.us/img577/6118/dscn7401l.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/577/dscn7401l.jpg/)

another different angle
http://img37.imageshack.us/img37/1421/dscn7403y.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/37/dscn7403y.jpg/)



Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: caston on August 24, 2011, 08:13:25 AM
Looks very impressive :)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: stryker on August 24, 2011, 12:15:17 PM
very nice indeed, like a piece of art  ;D


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: Jezzz on August 26, 2011, 03:48:55 PM
Looks great.  Can't wait to hear reports on the temps of your cards.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: dovewing2000 on September 03, 2011, 09:41:42 PM
haploid can I have permission to ask trini8d to build me one using your design lay out (or may be add to it?)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: wknight on September 04, 2011, 01:36:28 AM
I must say.. very impressive! Nice work..

It has given me some ideas for a project next weekend :)


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: haploid23 on September 05, 2011, 12:46:48 AM
haploid can I have permission to ask trini8d to build me one using your design lay out (or may be add to it?)

ya sure, go ahead and use the design, i don't mind at all. in fact, stellan0r saw this thread and did the exact same thing but stretched it a little bit. i believe he posted pics of his version on the first page.


Title: Re: [pics inside] custom built 8-card rack
Post by: m3sSh3aD on September 05, 2011, 12:58:07 AM
Right, YOU CANT JUST PLUG 8 CARDS INTO THE MOTHERBOARD!!! The normal extenders supply 75 watts from the board. RUnning 4 VGA (4x75W(300W)) is the limit. Least i found. I blew a motherboard plugging 5 in it. YOu need moidify or buy extender WITH POWER MOLEX to power the cards direct from the PSU. THats why i kept my rigs below 4 and still use power molex for the 4th card as it loses performance without i found :) Although i dont know what all your cards are. I run 5850's.

I hope you have VERY GOOD 1000W or GOOD 1200W, i.e, Corsair AX1200, antec HPC 1200W PSU's etc, I blew a cheap one and cheap one = KNACKERED HARDWARE, i warn you now :) YOu thought about HEAT! i got 8 running now.well 11 with comp, and use a 12" out take fan to get rid of it. 2x4 rigs. Bottom pic on this post shows what i use for extraction of heat. its HOT! without something.

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=18567.msg494839#msg494839

New (11.6+) drivers dont need DUMMY's at the back wither with windows (if your windows). Although 10.4 with 2.1SDK is the best. CGminer and diablo.

AND FANS, you need fans mate. serious fans, them cards are close, WAY too close if you ask me. In in for a suprise i recon haha. 2 rigs of 4 mate, 2 rigs of 4 :) Greedy, i tried :)