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Cable Management Helpdesk

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#1
After several barrages of PMs for cable management help, I've decided its necessary for this, to improve TPU's system's standards. Here are some instructions:

=============================
Instructions to request and recieve help
=============================
Post request, and post images in a similar way to this, image under, camera angle and image wise (except size, using small image as an example)


Several requirements need to be met at the initial image post:
-Image must be clear and unblurred; must have clarity
-Flash MUST be used, to show everything off; remember you need help to repair it, you aren't showing it off, do not leave flash off and post your systems with the neons running; I'll just ignore you
-Image MUST be at least 1024x786 OR 786x1024. Anything lower will be ignored.
-System specifications must be noted
-Images MUST be posted as URL links please refrain from using imageshack/photobucket and use www.techpowerup.org instead.

Recommendations:

-Show both sides of the case, front side of the case (where you usually look) and the back side of the motherboard tray; this will significantly speed things up.

============================
NOTE: Please if you feel that any of my instructions will damage your hardware tell me, I do not want to be responsible if you accidentally tear a capacitor while trying to route something. Safety of your hardware first!

If anyone needs help please ask! Please keep discussion ON TOPIC. One sentence posts that are not of any relevance/constructive. I'll ask a moderator to delete those messages. (a moderator is looking at me in invisible mode!)

============================
Self Help tips
============================
-Vertical/horizontally running wires generally tend to look better
-Pay Attention to how much slack the wire has, if there is no slack then that is good, however make sure that it ISNT under too much stress
-Try to exploit ever nook and cranny of your case to hide the wires, out of the way of an airflow channel
-Check the space behind the motherboard tray, or behind the 3'25/5'25 bays, use cable ties to hold spare cables/cabling (such as DATA cables etcetra) there using the spare holes on unoccupied drive bays.
-If you have IDE, rather than spending money on rounded IDE cables, instead fold your cables, make sure you carefully and neatly fold them as you can damage the IDE cable by just scrunching it, if its too long, fold it back and zip tie it, however making sure that the zip tie only is tight enough to hold it in place.
-With unsleeved cables, such as fan headers, try twisting them up. This ensures that they will be bunched together and overall look better, however do not overdo it as you may end up doing damage on the wires; too much stress.

============================
Purchase Tips
============================
-Stay well away from cases that have been proven to have poor cable management. One recommendation, if you have a look at Antec, their Plus View II, SOHO file server; there are many cases based off that chassis; that kind of chassis is generally poor for cable management
-Tall cases make it difficult for cable management thanks to the massive space between the PSU and the motherboard
-Make sure to purchase a PSU that uses either mesh sleeving or the flexforce type of wiring, especially the flex force as they are very thin in comparison to meshed, and unsleeved. Either option will ensure that your cabling looks cleaner and more professional. Moreover, sleeved/flex force wires are less aiflow impeding.
-Modular PSUs are a good choice, however in some cases such as the RC690 or Cosmo 1000, they aren't necessarily the best choice as their cable management features greatly negate their advantage

============================
Bad cases for cable management (without modding)
============================
-Antec P180
-Antec PLUS VIEW, or any case based off that chassis
-Thermaltake Soprano, VX, etcetra
-Coolermaster Stacker 830

============================
Recommended cases
============================
-Antec SOLO/Sonata PLUS/Sonata Designer (the same case) - Cannot fit some ROG boards, but very tall standoffs to allow many cables to be routed under
-Coolermaster RC690
-Antec 900 (latest revision with cable management features)
-Coolermaster Cosmo1000
-Coolermaster Centurion 5 (requires a hole next to the PSU for the case to really be good, at stock it is fairly decent, but not near impressive, howver with the easy mod, the case is an excellent choice), or any other case that is based off this (most gigabyte cases, Coolermaster Mystique, etcetera)
-Apex PC series (Generic, very cheap on newegg with good quality)
-Lian Li VCool Series
-Ultra M988 (yay for the power grid block)
-Thermaltake Armor/Kandalf

=============================
Recommended Motherboards
=============================
Generally, do not purchase motherboards with the 24 pin power towards the rear of the board, best only to purchase motherboards with the 24pin power on the normal positioning (right of the RAM sockets). Take note of where the front IO cables are, they are best at the bottom edge of the motherboard, and not somewhere in the bottom half of the motherboard. SATA headers which are angled from the motherboard are something to look out for, they are far neater in comparison, and basically hide your cables (in some circumstances the traditional SATA layout looks better.

Recommended boards:
-DFI current lanparty series for Intel and AMD
-DFI Blood Iron series (similar to gigabyte)
-Gigabyte's X38/P35/P31 S series - Simple standard layout, on DS3P/DS4/DQ6, recommended due to full ATX size.
-ASUS Republic of Gamers motherboards with 90* SATA at edge of case, extremely neat for SATA routing.
-ASUS P5K-E WiFi - on edge, but not 90* SATA headers, however supplied with 90* SATA cables so cables can be neated EXTREMELY neatly like on the ROG boards.

. RECOMMENDED 1024x786, IF YOU WILL NOT BOTHER TO DOWNSIZE THEN POST THE IMAGES AS LINKS[/b]
 
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#2
YAY for TK!!!!!
 

Duffman

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#3
awesome, when i get a chance to take more pics, i'd love to get some advice although, i think my removable MB tray severely hampers cable management
 

ex_reven

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#4
Thanks Tk, finally an unofficial "official" cable management thread!:)
I second.
Good idea for a thread, probably a much needed one too.

Can I make a suggestion?
Accept images no wider than 1000 pixels, as they cause the screen to require scrolling (at least on my old regular 19" they did).
 
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#7
+1

nice idea!
 
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#9
If I could get the side panel off on the other side of my case, Id post up pics. I desperately need help with cable management. :(
 

Kursah

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#13
You're way too impatient man...a few weeks ago you had a help thread for your management, well more like a few different flavors for suggestions on your case. All answers were that you did a great job...glad to see you got over that phase. Now you want to help others, which is cool, but give it some time. Just because you're ready and willing doesn't necessarily mean that those that may want help are ready or have seen this thread yet. And this thread isn't even 24hrs old by what I'm reading...it's closer to 19 at this post.

If anything you should post some basic instructions with pictures for basic management maybe one with MODULAR and one non-MODULAR, tips for hiding the Case wires better, fan wiring, etc. That's what I was hoping to see when I opened this thread. Hell you could damn near just post all your case images from the last few months, toss in a couple of "behind the scenes" pictures and start adding instructions!

:toast:
 
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#14
Post up pics anyway. The other panel of the armor is removable... unscrew pull back on the panel and it slides off... thats all.
Im well aware of that. But for some reason, the panel just wont come off. It's stuck. Its not being blocked by anything its just jammed and I dont know how it happened.
 
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#15
Im well aware of that. But for some reason, the panel just wont come off. It's stuck. Its not being blocked by anything its just jammed and I dont know how it happened.
Use all your strength... it SHOULD come off. Even if it doesnt take pics anyway. Try pulling some of the cables out that you probably hid on the other side.
 
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#16
Use all your strength... it SHOULD come off. Even if it doesnt take pics anyway. Try pulling some of the cables out that you probably hid on the other side.
Believe me, I have and no dice. Though I will try again.
 
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#17
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#18
First off, thanks to tkpenalty for doing something like this. Secondly, I don't plan on investing anymore money into this system (IE: no new case). Lastly, no drilling of holes. It's not worth it on such an aged system. And so, let the rehab begin!

http://img.techpowerup.org/080105/IMG_2601749.jpg

http://img.techpowerup.org/080105/IMG_2602.jpg

http://img.techpowerup.org/080105/IMG_2603.jpg

http://img.techpowerup.org/080105/IMG_2605.jpg

http://img.techpowerup.org/080105/IMG_2608.jpg
Okay, yes I myself is against drilling holes as well. (Please, other people do not post anymore. PM me for anything other than this kind of stuff, unless you have solutions).

First thing to do, is to redo the PSU cables, re order those cables, run that 8 pin power behind all the modular stuff, so it doesnt go in a loop. Try running the cable straight down under the motherboard, then appearing just under the 4 pin 12v power and then connecting onto it, have a look at my older system. Don't have it simply looping over all your modular cables...

Next thing you could do is neatly "stuff" the wires behind that hdd bay, use zip ties or something to tighten them up so they dont go all over the place. Use the spare hdd holes to hold those spare cables

I would recommend you reinstall that hdd cage as it does help hide some cabling, try to reduce the slack in the cable, OR route it under the motherboard, and use some tape to keep it in place, then

With the 24 pin cable, I would route it up towards the roof of the case, then come straight down onto the motherboard, with the mobile rack holding the cable in place. Make note to not have any wires behind it. With the molexes, since its a set of three in a modular section, I would have the spare molex plug shoved into the space between the roof of the case and the burner; it simply looks better than having it dangling in the drive bay under it.

With the fan cable, I would route it through the front IO hole, then back inside through the 5'25 drive bay. Now for the SATA drive, use the adapter instead, and run a molex modular part instead of a SATA one, I would recommend running the SATA cable behind the hdd bay, and not into it, there is simply no point in having the hdd oriented in that direction if you are going to have the SATA cable like that.

Basically, cut down on uneeded mdoular parts. Whats plugged into them anyway? I'm guessing atm, two molexes and one SATA right?

With the IDE cable,dont bother with hiding it, instead try to make it look as neat as possible by running it straight up. If you clean that part of the case up, it will look much better like that.

NOTE: Motherboard removal REQUIRED. Remember to use tape to hold thoes under-the-motherboard cables in place. I can tell that is a APEX TU series case right? Damn those suck for cable management. you should have purchased a PC series case from Apex.... perfect for cable management.
 
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#19
Thanks tk, I'll get started on some of that wiring later tonight. Also, the "spare" molex plug in question is connected to the bottom two intake fans. In the first pic, you can kind of see it being routed into the 5.25 bay along the frame. And to clarify, by "fan cable" do you mean the zalman fan controller? Thanks again! Oh, the case is made by Rosewill, not APEX; though knowing Rosewill, they probably copied APEX's form.
 
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#20
When I get my new case fans, I will take pictures of my case. I just ordered them like 10 minutes ago so Wedish?
 

souljah888

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#21
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#22
well once again thanks tk for helping us out =), secondly im not that good with computers so im afraid if i pull out the cable which connects my harddrive it will lose the memory on it? and when i plug it back in it wont detect it ? , thirdly the psu cables are quite short,

well here they are

http://img.techpowerup.org/080107/CIMG2874.jpg
http://img.techpowerup.org/080107/CIMG2879.jpg
http://img.techpowerup.org/080107/CIMG2883.jpg
http://img.techpowerup.org/080107/CIMG2877.jpg

thanks.
So far so good, I don't really think you can improve on that. In terms of looks, I'd route the IDE cable through that hole instead of at the front. Fold it in half, then put the cable through and into the IDE drive. The SATA cable could go to another one of those holes, then behind the 3'25 bay. Don't you have an adapter for the SATA power? I'd rotate the SATA drive around, and move it up to the highest bay. Use some zipties to keep those cables in place.

The power cable, 24 pin, twist it so the wire strands are closer to each other and zip tie it. Same with the intel stock cooler cable, twist it so its like a rope, then plug it in. It will look far better than knotting it in that manner :S

The front IO cables should go through the same hole, however try to route it in a way that makes it unseen, as in from the hole, go back towards the rear of the case, then down and to the base of the case, then straight towards the front. Exploit the wires' thickness to use the side of the case to hold it in place. Use tape as well, as you already have.

Those two holes, remember, push the cables out of sight after you do the routing if they are in sight, with the other side panel on it should hold the wires firmly.

Just to be honest with you, all this stuff is just for looks :p



My PC half a year ago, souljah, note how that 4 pin wire runs into the clips on the intel stock cooler, and NOT straight into the port... you may want to rotate the cooler.
 
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#23
Question. When I route cables underneath the motherboard, do the cables touch the bottom of the motherboard? Will I have to worry about breaking the solder points off of the bottom of the motherboard with the PSU cables?
 
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#24
Question. When I route cables underneath the motherboard, do the cables touch the bottom of the motherboard? Will I have to worry about breaking the solder points off of the bottom of the motherboard with the PSU cables?
Depends on your riser type. On some cases such as the SOLO they are around 7.5mm tall, the standard ones around only 5mm tall. You wont break the solder points, but the cable itself. Sleeving for under mobo = horrible. Everything will go okay, provided that you lay the wires flat with none of the strands stacked on top of each other. Its a very time consuming but rewading proccess, just remember to use something like tape to hold the cables down.

In short, mounting under will more likely damage the cable/wire than the motherboard itself.

Generally with short normal risers you can fit:

-Four strand PSU cables (molex, ATX 12v 4 pin), flatten out the wires
-Front IO USB cables (dual sleeved cable or unsleeved)
-ONE SATA cable; do not stack
-Front IO cables (easiest to fit)
-Fan wires
-Flat standard IDE cable, ignoring the connectors
-Flex force PSU wires, if laid flat

Use your common sense; is the best advice. I'd use a clear piece of perspex and lay it against the wiring, using the spacers of the motherboard to support it and see how the wires are after they are under the board. Yes, it is okay if the wires are pushing on the board, but too much flex in the board can kill it.

With taller risers... you can do way more (with the inclusion of others) (my case for example)

-PCI-E 6 pin
-more than one SATA cable
-Fired wire :laugh:
-Front audio
-IDE and the header itself

Just watch out for parts of the board like the RAM slots... they can put shitloads of holes in your cables.
 

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#25


LOL I know lots of work tomorrow....