Gamecube PC Build (2.62 Liters) (It's back yo)

ejectbutton

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Mar 15, 2017
22
52
Disclaimer: First thread, I've no idea how to operate this :)

I've been a lurker on this forum for a while now and now I've got something to contribute:
The Gamecube Build.

Working on a better name for it still, shh. I've seen computer builds inside the hollow shells of them before, but always with integrated CPUs, Pico ITX, or simply strapping a Pi Zero to a gamecube shell and calling it a day. However, after some research I believe it's possible now to build a fully gaming capable system inside one of these puppies.

Part Selection
To start, the main case is 5.9 × 6.3 × 4.3 in, the dimension from front to back being the longest at 6.3. From here, this helps narrow down component choice.

Key:
Red: Undecided
Yellow: Working on it
Green: Checked Off


Motherboard:
Completely thanks to the recent rise of Mini STX, the build is possible. I've chosen the ASUS H110S2 for the job. Cheap, has all the necessary support, and of course the M key m.2 slot for conversion to pcie x4.

Processor:
I've been dead set on using a G4560 since the build's inception. The hyperthreaded dual core with an impressively low 54w TDP makes it a shoe-in, in my mind anyway.

CPU Cooler:
I've gone with a Noctua LP cooler. It actually does not fully fit, but I'm banking on my ability to cut the heat sink to make it fit.

RAM:
16GB of DDR4 Sodimm. One's Team Elite stuff, 2133 mhz. Other's Corsair budget stuff, same speed.

Graphics card:
Again, one of the larger parts, this was a concern. A 1050ti was the obvious choice for the endeavor, as several short pcb card fit the bill at 5.9 inches in length. You'd think a LP card would be even better, but all LP 1050tis come in at 6.3 inches or more in length as of the time of writing, cutting them out of the picture. I decided on the EVGA 1050ti SC.

SSD:
Western Digital Blue 256 GB SSD. Solid, hopefully is disassemble-able a la STX 1.60.

Power supply:
The HDPLEX 160w DC-ATX is a solid platform for DC voltage conversion for the powered riser, and a power brick was chosen, an alienware one coming in at 330w. Way overkill, but it was almost the same price as the 230w.

Adapters:
Good lord, the adapters. I'd love to have a better understanding of how powering the stx board through the HDplex was done in STX 160.0, but alas. m.2 M key to pcie x4, 1 usb 2.0 with 4 slots, the GC controller adapter, a powered x4 to x16 pcie riser (at least 7 inches in length),

Wifi card: Yes, if this build wasn't stupid enough already, I'm shooting for wifi. The thought here is to use the other m.2 slot for the chip, then run the antenna as a wire out through the Gamecube's carry handle. Please, let me know if I'm misunderstanding how these wifi cards work, I'm the opposite of an expert on this.

Gamecube:
A friend just recently gave me a perfect condition platinum Cube specifically for this build. I'm planning on using it if no other broken cubes reveal themselves, as I'm still hesitant to tear apart a functioning one.

Index
TBC

Open questions from OP to the forum:



I'll be adding a few pics and updating as time goes on. Thanks for reading!

 
Last edited:

jtd871

SFF Guru
Jun 22, 2015
1,165
847
if you can afford it, AsRock has announced a Z270/B250 mSTX barebones with several M.2 and MXM. Don't know if the mobo will fit in the proposed chassis, but might permit you to do GPU + M.2 SSD. Supposed to go on sale Q2. Expect news at Computex.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ejectbutton

Jonny727272

Airflow Optimizer
Feb 26, 2017
275
218
This sounds really cool. I remember just getting into sff PC's and thinking it'd be cool to build inside an Xbox. Now my eyes have been opened and building side a GameCube is possible!
 
  • Like
Reactions: ejectbutton

T_Tank

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Mar 16, 2017
118
80
Just a thought but have you thought about making a replica GameCube in cad then rework it internally to figure out the layout?

If anything if you can even have a fake game cube printed out then work the finish to make it look like the real deal
 

That Guy B

Minimal Tinkerer
May 31, 2017
3
10
I too got an itch to put a PC inside of a Gamecube. Like you, I have been a lurker for sometime now and your thread has given me reason to break my silence. Your build is an ambitious one; fitting the board with all of its fixins AND an dedicated card will be a challenge for sure.

To start off, here is the list of components I used for my build:

Mobo - ASUS H110S1/CSM
CPU - i5-6600K Skylake
SSD - Intel 600p 256GB NVMe
Ram - G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x4GB DDR4 2133
CPU Cooler - Dynatron K5
WiFi/Bluetooth - Intel Dual Band AC 8260 (had to get the antennas separately)
Power Supply - 120W 19V AC Adapter (laptop style)

As you can see, I went sans dedicated card. However, I have gamed some with the onboard HD 530 and its not a horrible experience. Heck, it ran Tomb Raider (2014) at 35 - 40 fps at 1440 x 900 on normal settings. So that is something, eh?



Anyway, I figured I would take some pics of the build and help open up the conversation a bit more. So, without further stalling here are the glorious pics.

Case together




Explosions! by Micheal Bay


Front panel removed.


In this last one you can see how the Sata plugs are pretty much covered by the front plate, which might cause an issue with your build.
 
Mar 6, 2017
501
454
I too got an itch to put a PC inside of a Gamecube. Like you, I have been a lurker for sometime now and your thread has given me reason to break my silence. Your build is an ambitious one; fitting the board with all of its fixins AND an dedicated card will be a challenge for sure.

To start off, here is the list of components I used for my build:

Mobo - ASUS H110S1/CSM
CPU - i5-6600K Skylake
SSD - Intel 600p 256GB NVMe
Ram - G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x4GB DDR4 2133
CPU Cooler - Dynatron K5
WiFi/Bluetooth - Intel Dual Band AC 8260 (had to get the antennas separately)
Power Supply - 120W 19V AC Adapter (laptop style)

As you can see, I went sans dedicated card. However, I have gamed some with the onboard HD 530 and its not a horrible experience. Heck, it ran Tomb Raider (2014) at 35 - 40 fps at 1440 x 900 on normal settings. So that is something, eh?



Anyway, I figured I would take some pics of the build and help open up the conversation a bit more. So, without further stalling here are the glorious pics.

Case together




Explosions! by Micheal Bay


Front panel removed.


In this last one you can see how the Sata plugs are pretty much covered by the front plate, which might cause an issue with your build.

Wow, that fits so well! I wonder if you could make the controller ports work? It'd be cool to make the optical drive work, but that's where the cooler is and almost nobody uses optical discs anymore. I kinda wish I hadn't come up with the idea I'm working on now...
 

ejectbutton

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Mar 15, 2017
22
52
This is incredible! And very enlightening. You're right, that may pose a problem, especially since I plan on making the controller ports function by essentially transplanting the pcb and ports of a Wii U Gamecube controller adapter right into the existing slots. I'm already planning to cut the adapter pcb to make room for the sodimm ram, but this only compounds the issue. I think someone makes low profile Sata cables.. I'll have to look into that.

By the way, how did you get the top of the case to mount to the bottom? From what I've read there are 4 posts inside the case that keep it together, and would have to be cut for the motherboard to fit.

In addition, how are your temperatures, and I'm curious, how are they with the lid closed as well? Do you have to run it with the lid open?

Oh and in response to T-Tank, that is for sure something to look into. I'm still sort of married to the idea of using a... mostly original case, but of course, changes will have to be made. Maybe the backplate could be printed for I/O? I'm not so sure, I've never printed or modeled anything.
 

CC Ricers

Shrink Way Wielder
Bronze Supporter
Nov 1, 2015
2,049
2,198
Wow, that's a pretty cool little system. I'm surprised at the performance of the IGP myself. You could probably run some games on Dolphin emulator to recover its GameCube-ness and they'd run smooth as butter I bet.
 

That Guy B

Minimal Tinkerer
May 31, 2017
3
10
By the way, how did you get the top of the case to mount to the bottom? From what I've read there are 4 posts inside the case that keep it together, and would have to be cut for the motherboard to fit.

In addition, how are your temperatures, and I'm curious, how are they with the lid closed as well? Do you have to run it with the lid open?

The top of the case just sorta sits on top of the bottom part now. Its not going to fall off by any means but if you pick the case up from the top it will pull off with a bit of effort. I feel like my ultra hot gluing skills helped with that........

As far as temps, with the lid closed (non-gaming) it will run around 45 C. Lid open (non-gaming) round 35 C. When I am gaming I leave the lid open and it rarely goes above 55 C. Surprisingly, that little fan doesn't get too horribly loud.

Wow, that's a pretty cool little system. I'm surprised at the performance of the IGP myself. You could probably run some games on Dolphin emulator to recover its GameCube-ness and they'd run smooth as butter I bet.

I have played around ALOT with Dolphin. It can run most games, with the Ishiiruka build, at a steady 30 fps. I was really hoping the i5 would do a bit better with Dolphin. Pretty much everything else from that era all the way back works great. PS2, PSX, N64, Dreamcast, Arcade, SNES, GBA, NES, Genesis, Sega CD......I think you get the picture. :)
 

CubanLegend

Steely-Eyed NVFlash Man
Dec 23, 2016
814
978
smallformfactor.net
I fully support a build inside a gamecube. OH MY GOD. Please do it. Also @That Guy B I cant see your pics in your post above of your build?

I LOOOVED my gamecube and I absolutely still emulate my fav classics on Dolphin's Ishiiruka builds in 4K with AA and high res testure packs and some subtle Screen Space post process effects. Beautiful!

The idea of having a SFF build INSIDE a gamecube seems totally awesome! Imagine being able to unplug it, grab it by the handle and take it somehere! XD AWESOME
 

T_Tank

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Mar 16, 2017
118
80
Ya know.. Make some 3D printed inserts to replace the game cube controller ports with usb and you'd be able to use whatever game pad adapter just make the ports part of the front io
 
  • Like
Reactions: SeñorDonut

VitoHGrind

Chassis Packer
May 8, 2017
16
7
I cannot see the pictures that you posted @That Guy B .
I couldn't see the pics that @That Guy B posted either, but when I viewed the page on my phone they showed up no problem. Weird...


Anyhoo.. Awesome build idea to the OP and nicely done to That Guy B! I'm working on a similar build, diff system same idea. I wanted to wait and post pics until I had at least a functioning system in the case, but like the OP said, it's better to post and get some ideas from the community. I've been banging my head trying to get it all to fit. I'll def be watching this thread. Good luck!
 

Soul_Est

SFF Guru
Moderator
Silver Supporter
Feb 12, 2016
1,480
1,872
I couldn't see the pics that @That Guy B posted either, but when I viewed the page on my phone they showed up no problem. Weird...


Anyhoo.. Awesome build idea to the OP and nicely done to That Guy B! I'm working on a similar build, diff system same idea. I wanted to wait and post pics until I had at least a functioning system in the case, but like the OP said, it's better to post and get some ideas from the community. I've been banging my head trying to get it all to fit. I'll def be watching this thread. Good luck!
And now they show up.
 

ejectbutton

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Mar 15, 2017
22
52
Update: Mockups

So now that I've had some time to compile measurements for the components I've done some mockups in Designer Pro. I wish I knew how to use CAD or sketchup, but alas, it's what I know. Anyway, all components are to scale and realized properly. There are only 4 problems!




1: The GC controller adapter intersects with the ram. This is fixable. the part of the pcb that intersects with ram doesn't actually have anything in it in terms of connections, at least to my eye. If it doesn't work, well.. I'm out 20 bucks.

2: The CPU cooler intersects with the back USB ports. I think I can grind away at the heatsink if it's too low, but.. that's just it, it might not be too low. If you guys know how high tall this thing is or have a better idea, lemme know.

3: The Controller Adapter is in the way of the forward Sata ports. Solved this by finding super low profile sata connectors. Novel, I know. /s

4: Ethernet 2 is obstructed by the carry handle. In all honesty.. I just don't care. I've got ethernet 1, so why should I need another, right?..

Aside from that, handling the bottom is a bit of a trouble.

In order to let the GPU breathe, my plan is to cut a 120mm hole in the bottom of the case and let the gpu fan act as an intake. However, the bottom of the gc is made up of several removable parts, and would be unreasonable to make a hole in. My solution?
In essence, I'll just move around that problem by cutting each piece so that the sides appear intact (as the pieces overlap to the walls of the console), glue those on, then bolt a whole new floor to the case.

By the way, as for the material for this piece, metal? Plastic? Something else? Suggestions are welcome.

Cut a 120mm hole in that, get a dust filter for it. Solved. As for the back I/O I plan to just drill/carve the holes for it directly into the case, then drill some additional holes in the back behind the carry handle for additional ventilation. I don't trust the two 50mm vents on either side to adequately cool the cpu here, especially since I won't be keeping the lid opening mechanism.

Oh, by the way, the two holes for cable routing from the top half to the bottom with the gpu are each 0.25 square inches, so fingers crossed..

 

ejectbutton

Caliper Novice
Original poster
Mar 15, 2017
22
52
You might consider using a smaller CPU cooler. When I planned my A4 build, I specifically wanted a cooler that fit within the Intel keepout area as much as possible.
How would I tell what's a good cooler for this build then? Smaller coolers like the silverstones don't strike me as being capable of cooling a non-t CPU, especially under load, unless I'm misunderstanding that.