10 amazingly original PC case mods

18th Feb 2009 | 11:01

10 amazingly original PC case mods

Head-turning homes for a computer's innards

It's easy to laugh at bad or ugly PC case mods... really, really easy, in fact.

But there are also a whole legion of talented, imaginative folk creating some amazingly original homes for their PC's innards.

Overclocking or increasing performance isn't usually the goal here; the challenge is just to make something that looks great for the hell of it.

And if that involves a touch of taxidermy, then so be it. Here's our top 10 cool mods...

10. X-Zone
By day, the X-Zone server is an impressive if rather sterile-looking construction of hard steel and curious London Eye-esque wheels. Turn off the lights and set it rotating, though, and it becomes an LED frenzy: a sort of mirror ball from hell, tuned to 150bpm. Check out the movies to see what we mean.

9. Donkey Kong
It would be all too easy (in strictly relative terms, of course) to just bung a few PC parts into an old arcade machine cabinet, wouldn't it? Instead, the Donkey Kong case mod is actually a half-scale replica created from the ground up by Martin Smith and first exhibited at QuakeCon.

8. Weighted Companion Cube
Humorously incorporating phrases such as "The cake is a lie" and "I'm making a note here: huge success" into normal conversation may be SO last year, but Portal's most endearing 'character' lives on with this perfectly realised (and surprisingly small) Weighted Companion Cube tribute.

7. Windows XP box
The Windows XP box mod is another feat of micromagical engineering done for the sheer hell of it. The idea was to shove a then-state-of-the-art PC into a standard, cardboard Windows XP box, preferably without it self-combusting at any stage of the process. Anyone up for doing the same with a couple of SLI graphics cards, hmm?

6. Humidor
Now here's something REALLY original. As if actual, working-as-intended humidors weren't exotic enough, Jeffrey Stephenson decided he wanted his PC to look like one. And why not? The Humidor is a thing of beauty, and isn't plastered all over with pictures of people with throat cancer, either.

5. Bender
You might think the Bender mod, a loving tribute to Futurama's favourite character, is made from perspex or something equally malleable, but no: in true mad boffin style, he's forged from purest sheet metal. Oh, and his eyes light up and everything. The best part is in the succinct FAQ: "Q: Can you build one for me? A: No".

4. Batmobile
Modding purists may scoff that this Batmobile PC is actually housed in an off-the-shelf 1/6 scale remote contol model of the Tumbler Batmobile, rather than being handcrafted from scratch, but that is piffling detail: the jet exhausts act as hard drive activity lights, for gawd's sake!

3. ZX81
The ZX81 home computer was Sir Clive Sinclair's second finest hour. If you can remember it at all, you'll remember how small the case actually was, and how impressive it is that Unravelled (aka David Harvey) has managed to fit a fully-working PC inside one. Well, apart from the keyboard.

2. R2D2
In a way, it's surprising that Star Wars, surely the supreme emperor of all geek-inspiring films, hasn't spawned more mods. Having said that, there are at least two full-size R2D2 mods in existence, of which this R2D2 mod is the best. We're not sure exactly who built it, but that man (let's face it, it will be a man) deserves kudos.

1. Compubeaver
"There is... something intrinsically funny about putting a computer in a beaver." Thus speaks Kasey McMahon, one of the artists behind Your Psycho Girlfriend, and we challenge you to disagree when you see the Compubeaver. (We also challenge you not to make all the obvious jokes.)

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