The most POWERFUL Gamecube ever (as far as I can tell)

Soul_Est

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Feb 12, 2016
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Sucks that you may not be able to use the Ryzen 5 2600. ETAPrime has tested a RX 590 with a Ryzen 5 2400G and the results?

 
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Valantar

King of Cable Management
Jan 20, 2018
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Have to hope you're able to persuade ASRock into sending you a beta bios with the required changes - can't be that difficult for them after all, and the TDP of the chips is the same, so the board should handle it fine. I had some issues with an ASRock FM2+ motherboard a few years back, and they sent me a bios update to test out in short order. Then again, that was a bug and not an "unsupported use case" or whatever nonsense they'd probably label this as.
 
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W4RR10R

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Have to hope you're able to persuade ASRock into sending you a beta bios with the required changes - can't be that difficult for them after all, and the TDP of the chips is the same, so the board should handle it fine. I had some issues with an ASRock FM2+ motherboard a few years back, and they sent me a bios update to test out in short order. Then again, that was a bug and not an "unsupported use case" or whatever nonsense they'd probably label this as.
Did you contact them through standard tech support (the form on their site)? I've been trying to lean on some people to get direct contact with their bios or motherboard team. Some people over on the bios mod forum confirmed (I havent been able to myself) that the microcode for the non apus are in the bios but that there could be other things blocking them, but their top bios mod guy refused to help becuase "my problem doesn't interest him".

I'm probably going to get a 2400g and go with just apu for awhile, while I finish designing and then fabricating the custom color for the vega. In the meantime I'm looking to buy an mATX board to use my 2600 and Vega 56 in an old hp prebuilt case for a sleeper pc type build.
 
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Soul_Est

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Did you contact them through standard tech support (the form on their site)? I've been trying to lean on some people to get direct contact with their bios or motherboard team. Some people over on the bios mod forum confirmed (I havent been able to myself) that the microcode for the non apus are in the bios but that there could be other things blocking them, but their top bios mod guy refused to help becuase "my problem doesn't interest him".

I'm probably going to get a 2400g and go with just apu for awhile, while I finish designing and then fabricating the custom color for the vega. In the meantime I'm looking to buy an mATX board to use my 2600 and Vega 56 in an old hp prebuilt case for a sleeper pc type build.
Ouch. I do hope that you can get the help and BIOS that you need. What type of cooler are you planning to fab for the Vega 56? I'm currently knocking around ideas for the next iteration of Full Circle and aside for the Dynatron B8 and B12, I haven't found anything that may work for me.
 

W4RR10R

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Ouch. I do hope that you can get the help and BIOS that you need. What type of cooler are you planning to fab for the Vega 56? I'm currently knocking around ideas for the next iteration of Full Circle and aside for the Dynatron B8 and B12, I haven't found anything that may work for me.
I'm making an entirely custom cooler, laser cut copper fins and 7 8mm heat pipes, it will basically fill the entire bottom portion of the gamecube shell.
 

Soul_Est

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I'm making an entirely custom cooler, laser cut copper fins and 7 8mm heat pipes, it will basically fill the entire bottom portion of the gamecube shell.
That'll be beautiful to behold.
 

Valantar

King of Cable Management
Jan 20, 2018
721
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Did you contact them through standard tech support (the form on their site)? I've been trying to lean on some people to get direct contact with their bios or motherboard team. Some people over on the bios mod forum confirmed (I havent been able to myself) that the microcode for the non apus are in the bios but that there could be other things blocking them, but their top bios mod guy refused to help becuase "my problem doesn't interest him".

I'm probably going to get a 2400g and go with just apu for awhile, while I finish designing and then fabricating the custom color for the vega. In the meantime I'm looking to buy an mATX board to use my 2600 and Vega 56 in an old hp prebuilt case for a sleeper pc type build.
Yeah, as far as I can remember I just filled out a contact form on their support site. Looking at the emails I got a reply with the beta bios update just three days after I initially contacted them.
 
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mrp0p1nfr3sh

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Sep 4, 2017
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Interested to see how it works. Will you be doing an APU setup in your Gamecube as well. Its been my dream to run that setup.
 

Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Feb 1, 2016
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Seriously considering mimicking this build. How cleanly does the Mini STX board fit into the Gamecube? Any chance you could post photos of it dropped into place? Cheers.
 

W4RR10R

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Update #4: Pics because its happening

General fitment of the hardware:
So here are some photos of the A300m in the GC shell, I still have a decent amount of trimming to do, but I'm waiting until positioning of parts is more finalized as I don't want to remove material that I may want later. Right now the shell doesn't close because the posts that the four main case screws thread into are still full length so the extra thickness of the motherboard wont let it close all the way. As for cooling I'm going to replace the logo jewel on the disk reader lid with black wire mesh as that part sits directly over the fan on the L9a (for the most part).




CAD of the GPU cooler:

Rough Vega Nano PCB



Preliminary Cooler design


Heat pipes and cold plate. The cold plate is an exact copy of the one that came on the card, I will be adding more to get direct contact with the mosfets as the standard cooler had a secondary cooler underneath the main fin stack for the VRM. I also haven't decided whether or not I should go with soldered copper fins or press fit aluminum, for low production (1 maybe 2 if I screw up) the cost difference is negligible, my main concern is ease of assembly. Most heat pipes can be soldered to with solder that melt below 250C, but doing all the soldering with an iron would be a nightmare because there are >130 fins and 7 hole per fin so ..... >910 individual solder joints, or I could experiment with solder paste and essentially coat the pipes, slide all the fins on (with removable shims, probably washers I'm cheap and lazy), and then bake it in a oven. Or go with aluminum press fit following a similar process, bake the fin (make the holes larger), refrigerate/freeze the heat pipe assembly, and then quickly slide all the fins on with removable spacers, let cool. And thus I run it to the hardest and most expensive part of one off projects, prototyping.

This is a rough layout of all the parts, minus the dynamo 360 and Gamecube controller usb adapter. The cooler on top is a basic model of the L9a using just the exterior dimensions.


I may end up going to flat heat pipes or smaller diameter so that I could achieve tighter bends. From reading the specs sheets of different heat pipes and personal experience, a "safe" bend is anywhere in the range of Center line bend radius = 2.5 to 3 * Diameter --> 8mm heat pipe ~ 24mm radius. But with a comparable (equivalent heat transfer) flat heat pipes you could potentially bend them along the wider face and with 10mm x 4.5mm pipe --> 4.5mm "diameter" ` 13.5 mm radius bend. I'm going to order some bar stock to turn some mandrels and various heat pipes to do some testing, may take awhile though. (money and school).

There is still a lot of work to do and stuff may change. I'm so happy that there is interest in my project.

Hope:
Maybe, just maybe if there are enough of us interested in using the A300m in similar ways (ie. 2600 with a dGPU), we can convince Asrock to give us semi official support in the form a beta BIOS that allows the use of non APU parts. So maybe, y'all could ask asrock for help with it (even if you don't intend to do it) to make it appear that there is an market larger than just me wanting to use their product in more ways than currently supported.
 

Brian_Buckley

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Sep 26, 2017
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I've been thinking through the design of how I want to do one of these builds as well and have been looking at Asetek's 92mm AIO for cooling. I realized I could maybe turn around the motherboard and have the AIO facing out the back and overhanging on top of the motherboard a bit. Of course that'd mean rerouting some of the IO to the back but it might be worth it. The thermal headroom on that AIO is high enough that you could maybe combine it with a GPU waterblock and cool both, but I'm not sure.
 

W4RR10R

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I've been thinking through the design of how I want to do one of these builds as well and have been looking at Asetek's 92mm AIO for cooling. I realized I could maybe turn around the motherboard and have the AIO facing out the back and overhanging on top of the motherboard a bit. Of course that'd mean rerouting some of the IO to the back but it might be worth it. The thermal headroom on that AIO is high enough that you could maybe combine it with a GPU waterblock and cool both, but I'm not sure.
The issue would be the tubes, there is only a few mm's on either side of the motherboard inside the Gamecube shell. If you went with only an APU there may be plenty of room under or above (depending on placement) for even a 120mm AIO, I've managed to fit a 140mm fan in the GBA player attachment (same footprint as the bottom portion of the GC).
 
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Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Feb 1, 2016
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Just to be clear, you're custom fabricating the cooler with heatpipes etc?
 

Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Just a heads up that making a heatsink is a LOT more complicated than you'd think once you move beyond chiselling it out of a single piece of metal (ie. CNC). Heatpipes are also an absolute whore to bend.
 

Valantar

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Jan 20, 2018
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Just a heads up that making a heatsink is a LOT more complicated than you'd think once you move beyond chiselling it out of a single piece of metal (ie. CNC). Heatpipes are also an absolute whore to bend.
If you look at GamersNexus' YouTube channel they recently did a video tour of a heatpipe factory, including a manual pipe bending station - with the compulsory "look how crap we are at this compared to the people who work here" segment. Still, it looked doable with the right jig/tools, but not easy by any means.
 
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W4RR10R

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If you look at GamersNexus' YouTube channel they recently did a video tour of a heatpipe factory, including a manual pipe bending station - with the compulsory "look how crap we are at this compared to the people who work here" segment. Still, it looked doable with the right jig/tools, but not easy by any means.
If you look at GamersNexus' YouTube channel they recently did a video tour of a heatpipe factory, including a manual pipe bending station - with the compulsory "look how crap we are at this compared to the people who work here" segment. Still, it looked doable with the right jig/tools, but not easy by any means.
I have seen, the factory tour video. (It would honestly surprise me if >90% of people on this forum aren't subbed to GN)

As for bending heat pipes, I haven't bent heat pipes but I do have a pretty decent amount of experience in fabrication (can't find any of my photos) But suffice to say I have dealt with bending brittle small diameter thin wall tubes (Brass). I intend to make a purpose built bender for my heat pipes, it also may be hard to tell in the screenshots (my old laptop really doesn't like high part count assemblies) all 7 heat pipes are exactly the same (just rotated) its a 180 degree bend with a 24mm CLR (3*Dia which is min suggested on the data sheet for the particular part I'm looking at), to I will be running so bend tests with various techniques.
 

Valantar

King of Cable Management
Jan 20, 2018
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I have seen, the factory tour video. (It would honestly surprise me if >90% of people on this forum aren't subbed to GN)

As for bending heat pipes, I haven't bent heat pipes but I do have a pretty decent amount of experience in fabrication (can't find any of my photos) But suffice to say I have dealt with bending brittle small diameter thin wall tubes (Brass). I intend to make a purpose built bender for my heat pipes, it also may be hard to tell in the screenshots (my old laptop really doesn't like high part count assemblies) all 7 heat pipes are exactly the same (just rotated) its a 180 degree bend with a 24mm CLR (3*Dia which is min suggested on the data sheet for the particular part I'm looking at), to I will be running so bend tests with various techniques.
Sounds good :) From looking at the equipment they used in the video, it seemed that having a jig matching the profile of the pipe all around stopped it from deforming when bent - which makes sense as long as the jig is made from something stronger than the heatpipe so that it doesn't give the pipe room to expand in any direction (except stretching, that is). The pipe collapsing/flattening would mean it also widening, after all.

I'm more interested in how you're planning to a) attach the pipes to the base (solder? seems like soldering heat pipes requires special low-temp solder to avoid blowing them up), and b) insert the pipes through the fins. Unless you plan to solder the fins to the pipes (tedious, if at all possible with aluminium fins) you need a tight fit between pipe and fin, which would likely require some sort of "pressing jig" to avoid crumpling the soft aluminium. Any plans for this? I'm thinking some sort of metal bar (or even hardwood) with handles on both sides and holes where the heatpipes can pass through could work (alongside some sort of spacer on top of the previous fin), with some sort of support to keep the ends of the pipes vertical and capable of withstanding the pressure.
 
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boingk

Caliper Novice
Feb 10, 2019
32
17
You need a tube bender like this.



Nothing too crazy, the inner just needs support while the length of tubing is tensioned and pulled over the radius.

Very keen to see how this goes, especially with possible BIOS mods.