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Killer Mac Pro 2019

Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
Hi Everyone,

Since reading this forum, I was thinking to mod my 11 year old 2007 Mac Pro to give it a new life a new purpose :) I have read quite a lot, and I decided what to do so I take on the challenge.

My Specs:

Specs:
CPU: Intel i9-9900K
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15
MB: Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
Memory: HyperX Predator 64GB (4 x 16GB)
PSU: Seasonic Prime 750 Titanium SSR-750TR 750W 80+ Titanium
Fan: 3 Noctua NF-F12 PWM
SSD: 2 of Samsung 860 EVO 4TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD
M.2 Disk: Samsung 970 EVO 1TB
GPU: AMD Radeon Vega Frontier Edition Air
Disk Adapter: 4 of NewerTech AdaptaDrive 2.5" to 3.5" Drive Converter Bracket
BT/ Wifi Card: Padarsey BCM94360CS2 WiFi Bluetooth Airport Wireless Card


First I disassembled all the components in Mac Pro, it was quite straight forward but still took me 1 hour to do all that, also I took some help from ifixit at some points where I had a hard time, trying to find out a stubborn screw which locks the front fan assembly, interestingly it was just at the side of the case, here are some photos, from disassembly.
 

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trs96

Moderator
Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
13,213
Motherboard
GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
CPU
i5-4690K
Graphics
HD4600 / RX 570
Mac
iMac, Mac mini
Mobile Phone
Android
Out with the old, in with the new. Congratulations on taking on this challenging project. We'll be watching how it goes.
 
Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
After finishing the disassembly, It was time to cut, drill and torture my beloved Mac Pro case, which had a hard time doing it at first but it was for a greater good, so I kept on checking my laserhive mATX converter kit parts, for fitment, all I can say is it is a very well made kit, apart from some parts where it aligns with the case and creates another layer of aluminum which than lead to alignment problems when I installed my GPU, but managed to fix it.
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
Once all the parts were cut out the front panel, the psu and the I/O it was time to install them in their appropriate places. Up to this point everything went quite smoothly, the only part that I did not like is cutting the aluminum of the cheese grater :) I must say that, Apple used a very sturdy and strong aluminum even with all the holes, it was quite challenging to cut it out.
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
After installing the mATX I/O, I moved inside there I took out all the motherboard standoffs with a soft hammer, it was very easy to do that, quite enjoyed myself, and I installed the motherboard tray which I purchased from Laserhive, it comes with the mATX kit, it is a 5mm plexy motherboard tray, installing it is very straightforward, the only thing that you have to be careful is once you align the tray and put all the screw don't go and screw each of them, it is better to slowly work your way out, and screw each gradually, so this way it will be fitted perfectly.
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
Then I moved to the front panel, in order to fit the front panel, I had to shave off a little bit from the plastic holder in order for the panel to be flush with the rest of the case otherwise I did not like the unnecessary gap that it creates, but apart from that it was quite easy, please be carful with the power button hole, and enlarge it very slowly if you are after a tight fit.
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
After reading this forum for quite some time, I have find out that people preferred to use Corsair hot swap connector.
If you are going to use this connector, please install it with the original screws why ?
Because it later created a strange problem which, I had spent hours to find out, Let me briefly explain it, once I finished the build and powered it online for the first time, it only showed on of my SSD drivers, and it drove me crazy, the reason is because I used normal screws and the have a small head, once I slide in the SSD with the adapter it connected but then push slightly forward because the head of the screw was a little bit higher which touched the adapter at the back, but the original screw heads are all flat for a reason :) After I changed all the screws with the original ones, everything was working ok.
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
After I finished with the hot swap connectors I moved on to the motherboard installed the i9 9900 K processor and then installed the Noctua NH-D15, once I finished it, I realized that, one of the fans at the front is slightly higher compared to the one at the back, so this led me think that I could have clearance problems not with the cooler itself but with that front cpu fan, anyway, I installed everything inside for a trial fitment, and realized that yes indeed the case door is locking but but touching inside and pushing it which it should not, anyway take out all the parts, take out my X-acto knife and start shaving the fan from the bottom part with a correct angle, to the point where it cleared the door, and I can tell that, this was indeed the case I lowered the fan 5mm which was more than ok. This was quite nice, purchasing a cpu cooler and gave it a shave to make it even more complex :) But duty calls it was necessary
 

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Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
99
Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 M Gaming
CPU
i9-9900K
Graphics
Vega Frontier Edition
Mac
Mac Pro
I really liked the stock look, so from day 1 I wanted to use all its original parts as much as I could, I used the front fan assembly, I changed the fans with the noctua NF-F12 PWM used a t cable to power it with the SYSTEM 1 header.
used the L shaped part where the GPU originally sits, I also used the top DVD holder and PSU holder, in order to install the original PSU Cover after I installed the seasonic PSU, I cut a piece of wood and shaved it to the point where it flushed with the DVD Holder, then I covered it with a Tesa duct tape and then I used double sided tape to fix it.
 
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