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[Beginner] G4 Cube Build

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Hello everyone!

I have waited to create this post because I hadn't really decided on a general layout for my mod. However, after a few weeks of thinking, researching, and actually purchasing my Cube, I think I have an okay plan for the mod. Because this is my first build, I would love any suggestions!

I have not fully decided on some of the parts, and it will really depend on which options come out to be cheaper.

- CPU: any Skylake T-series i5 or i7 (6400-6700T, maybe even some ES/QS units)
- Cooler: Noctua NH-L9i (or any low-profile, quiet, and high-performing cooler; Silverstone? Zalman CNPS8900 Quiet?)
- Motherboard: Gigabyte H170N-WIFI
- RAM: 1x8GB (maybe 16GB if I can find a good deal)
- Storage: Samsung 850 EVO 500GB
- GPU: GTX 950 (mini card < 6.7"; exact model is dependant on price)
- PCIE Extender: modDIY 16x 30cm (chosen after some research)​
- PSU: Pico-Box 301W-400W (my current est. TDP is under 200W, so this might change)
- 2 * HP HSTNN-DA12 230W AC Adapters​
- Wireless: Broadcom BCM94352Z (does this have to be the Dell DW1560 variant?)

These parts should all be OS X compatible, but let me know if they aren't.

Also, regarding the actual modding part of the build: what tools are required? If I need a Dremel, which models/add-ons are recommended?

Thanks in advance!
 
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I'm thinking of purchasing a Gigabyte Z170N-Gaming 5 because I found a place to get it cheaper than a brand new H170N-WIFI. I saw some "Success" builds with the Z170N, so hopefully it will work.

Also, I still have the question: what tools do I need?
 
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This may or may not be of help, but i am also going to be building my first cube soon. This is the guide I will be using. I don't know how closley i am going to follow this, as the guide isn't as detailed as I would like, but it's something.

http://pmg5.dozuki.com/Guide/i7-3770S+Power+Mac+G4+Cube/2/1

Yup, I saw that before. I'll definitely be referring to that a lot especially because of the USB ports on top. I don't really know if I need all those tools though.
 
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
Messages
38
Motherboard
G4 Cube
CPU
Intel Core i7
Graphics
GTX 950
Mac
  1. iMac
  2. MacBook
  3. MacBook Air
  4. MacBook Pro
  5. Mac mini
  6. Mac Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Classic
  2. iBook
  3. Power Mac
  4. PowerBook
Mobile Phone
  1. Android
  2. iOS
Hello everyone!

I have waited to create this post because I hadn't really decided on a general layout for my mod. However, after a few weeks of thinking, researching, and actually purchasing my Cube, I think I have an okay plan for the mod. Because this is my first build, I would love any suggestions!

I have not fully decided on some of the parts, and it will really depend on which options come out to be cheaper.

- CPU: any Skylake T-series i5 or i7 (6400-6700T, maybe even some ES/QS units)
- Cooler: Noctua NH-L9i (or any low-profile, quiet, and high-performing cooler; Silverstone? Zalman CNPS8900 Quiet?)
- Motherboard: Gigabyte H170N-WIFI
- RAM: 1x8GB (maybe 16GB if I can find a good deal)
- Storage: Samsung 850 EVO 500GB
- GPU: GTX 950 (mini card < 6.7"; exact model is dependant on price)
- PCIE Extender: modDIY 16x 30cm (chosen after some research)​
- PSU: Pico-Box 301W-400W (my current est. TDP is under 200W, so this might change)
- 2 * HP HSTNN-DA12 230W AC Adapters​
- Wireless: Broadcom BCM94352Z (does this have to be the Dell DW1560 variant?)

These parts should all be OS X compatible, but let me know if they aren't.

Also, regarding the actual modding part of the build: what tools are required? If I need a Dremel, which models/add-ons are recommended?

Thanks in advance!
Hi! My build is almost identical and so is my experience with this lol
My only concern is the HP power supplies bc they're 19v... My Pico (still in the mail) only accepts 12v. That's why I'am currently modding an old 201W Xbox power supply.
 
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Hi! My build is almost identical and so is my experience with this lol
My only concern is the HP power supplies bc they're 19v... My Pico (still in the mail) only accepts 12v. That's why I'am currently modding an old 201W Xbox power supply.

I'm assuming you went with Mini-Box brand PSU, which is why the input is limited to only 12V. You're probably making a smarter decision by going with that brand, but I'm choosing to go with an Aliexpress variant for the following reasons:
  • I'm going to need a little more power than the maximum 160W offered by Mini-Box just to be safe --- i7-6400T + GTX 950 is already ~ 150W; many forums recommend at least a little headroom, and Nvidia recommends at least 350W)
  • It's a little costly for its relatively small amount of power --- there's prob. a reason it's more pricey, but I'm a cheapo (most, if not all, of the parts for my build are going to be purchased from sites like eBay, Craigslist, and Aliexpress)
  • I don't really have the time/skills/tools to mod an Xbox power supply --- in fact, this project is mostly on "pause" for me because of budget/school

EDIT: I looked at your post, makes sense now.
Side note: I noticed that in your signature, you list that you are planning to use an i7-6700K, and a Gigabyte 950 Windforce. I just want to point out that the 6700K might be a little too ambitious for the form factor of the Cube. If you are planning to overclock it... (a) I'm pretty sure the H170N doesn't support OC, (b) the thermals are going to be awful, and (c) your PSU (assuming it's by Mini-Box) will not be able to take it. Also, this is quite important: the current GPU that you have selected is TOO BIG. The maximum length of a GPU that can fit into the Cube is 6.7" or 170 mm.

=======

A little update to my build:
  • I've decided to go with the MSI GTX 950 2GD5 OC or OCV1 for my GPU, but this might change depending on availability (it's being sold wwaaayyy above what it's worth) as well as upcoming Hackintosh-compatible releases (1050? Nvidia drivers in Sierra???).
  • Purchased the H170N-WIFI.
  • I've begin taking measurements to create some CAD files that could help future builds --- need to purchase Torx screwdriver, and borrow caliper
  • Unfortunately, because of school, everything is on pause :(
 
Last edited:
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
Messages
38
Motherboard
G4 Cube
CPU
Intel Core i7
Graphics
GTX 950
Mac
  1. iMac
  2. MacBook
  3. MacBook Air
  4. MacBook Pro
  5. Mac mini
  6. Mac Pro
Classic Mac
  1. Classic
  2. iBook
  3. Power Mac
  4. PowerBook
Mobile Phone
  1. Android
  2. iOS
I'm assuming you went with Mini-Box brand PSU, which is why the input is limited to only 12V. You're probably making a smarter decision by going with that brand, but I'm choosing to go with an Aliexpress variant for the following reasons:
  • I'm going to need a little more power than the maximum 160W offered by Mini-Box just to be safe --- i7-6400T + GTX 950 is already ~ 150W; many forums recommend at least a little headroom, and Nvidia recommends at least 350W)
  • It's a little costly for its relatively small amount of power --- there's prob. a reason it's more pricey, but I'm a cheapo (most, if not all, of the parts for my build are going to be purchased from sites like eBay, Craigslist, and Aliexpress)
  • I don't really have the time/skills/tools to mod an Xbox power supply --- in fact, this project is mostly on "pause" for me because of budget/school

EDIT: I looked at your post, makes sense now.
Side note: I noticed that in your signature, you list that you are planning to use an i7-6700K, and a Gigabyte 950 Windforce. I just want to point out that the 6700K might be a little too ambitious for the form factor of the Cube. If you are planning to overclock it... (a) I'm pretty sure the H170N doesn't support OC, (b) the thermals are going to be awful, and (c) your PSU (assuming it's by Mini-Box) will not be able to take it. Also, this is quite important: the current GPU that you have selected is TOO BIG. The maximum length of a GPU that can fit into the Cube is 6.7" or 170 mm.

=======

A little update to my build:
  • I've decided to go with the MSI GTX 950 2GD5 OC or OCV1 for my GPU, but this might change depending on availability (it's being sold wwaaayyy above what it's worth) as well as upcoming Hackintosh-compatible releases (1050? Nvidia drivers in Sierra???).
  • Purchased the H170N-WIFI.
  • I've begin taking measurements to create some CAD files that could help future builds --- need to purchase Torx screwdriver, and borrow caliper
  • Unfortunately, because of school, everything is on pause :(
Yeah I was originally going to use the 6700 but decided on the 6700T for more GPU headroom... Whenever the GTX 1000 drivers are released if ever. I recommend the Asus Mini card (what I switched to after windforce failure)
 
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