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Mods: Classic Mini Jukebox
Saturday, October 13, 2007 - 8:21 PM EST
Posted by: Brian

James Colby has sent in some information about his Classic Mini Jukebox mod. We have seen a couple of similar mods with Mac minis mounted inside classic Mac cases, but James has taken things a step further with some more serious modifications. This includes the use of an ATX power supply. He also did a really nice job with cable management inside the case.

Here are more details about the project:

James writes, "I had a spare pair of power amps, a pre-amp and speakers in the dining room. Rather than use an Airport express or Slimp3, I thought it would be cool to have a standalone music server. It needed to be remotely controllable with a decent user interface - and should synch with my main music store. I thought about using an Apple TV in a Classic but the display driver capabilities are too limited.

So I got a nice Classic off Ebay, bought a new Mini, LCD display and PSU. Got some sheet steel and Aluminum from Home Depot and knocked it together in my New York apartment kitchen. Cutting the front off a cathode ray tube is an interesting project - as was the angle grinder work needed to make the inlay air rams. (My new wife extremely understands!)

The goal was to avoid modding the original case in any way. Only the front floppy bay was extended and a small hole added for the IR sensor - symmetrical to the power indicator. A 750GB drive is slung below the base plate and currently stores about 500 uncompressed CDs.

All my Macs have names. The working Classic that was ripped apart was christened Morris just before his untimely end. It seemed fitting that the brand new Mini (who survived intact for less than 10 minutes after arriving home from the Apple Store) be named Frank before being disemboweled. And low, Frankenmorris was born. (Geddit?)

1. Take one 17-year-old Mac Classic
2. Cut off front of CRT with diamond grinder to preserve full aesthetics of case.
3. Make custom mounts and air rams.
4. Modify front of Classic case to accept DVDs. Add hole for IR receiver.
5. Mount brand new 2.0GHz Core 2 Duo Mac Mini on rear of LCD unit.
6. Customize one ATX power supply.
7. Construct set of custom cables.
8. Add one USB to ATAPI adaptor for DVD drive.
9. Add extension connecters to existing holes in case rear: 2x USB, 1x HDMI, Ethernet, RCA audio
10. Mount power switch behind original side panel reset buttons.
11. Modify software so Mac Mini boots up into Front Row (disable Finder) and you have yourself a Classic Mini Jukebox. Simple!

Not sure what the next project will be...."




Very nice work indeed. Thanks for sharing your project with us James!

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