Having your computer monitor play a video of a roaring fire is good, but somehow I felt like it lacked the authenticity of a real fire. Though seeing a video of a fire evokes some feelings of nostalgia, I was always brought back to reality when I glanced to the side of the screen and saw some reminder that I was only viewing a technological reproduction of the genuine article. 

I decided to enclose my monitor with a frame to look like a real fireplace mantle piece, and added in some slowly pulsating lights behind to mimic the soft glow of a burning fire. The entire frame and light assembly slips onto my monitor and can easily be removed after I've finished sipping my hot cocoa.

After having my desktop fireplace running for a few days, I can say that there's a psychological reaction to seeing the fire and feeling the ambiance the back lights give. I feel a warming sensation over my face and body as I type. The feeling is sublime. 

Here's what I used to make mine:
  • wood saw
  • wood glue
  • glue gun
  • sandpaper           

Ready to make your own cozy fireplace out of your computer monitor? Let's go!

Step 1: design + measure

I designed my frame to be removable, the frame slips in place over the top of the monitor and covers the entire front and top - there's a small ledge on the backside to keep it secured to the monitor when installed.

I took the overall dimensions of the monitor, along with the thickness, and made sure to make note of the distance between bottom of monitor and bottom of stand. 
Great ible! I really like the gifs, that you've been making lately is there an Instructable somewhere on how to make them?
I also just published: <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/make-an-animated-GIF/">make an animated GIF</a>&nbsp;to help you out!
Thanks! I use the same process described <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Make-Animated-Gifs/">here</a>&nbsp;to turn photos into GIFs, and&nbsp;use <a href="http://www.iwisoft.com/videoconverter/">iWisoft </a>to convert video.<br />
First, I like the idea, your frame looks very nice. But i have some serious issues with the whole project. My cognitive dissonance meter was in the red zone. <br> <br>The mass of the control box was too great, but that great wad of cardboard and wire is fine? Never mind the bare circuit board inviting unintended grounding incidents. <br> <br>You put the nice frame around your monitor, but couldn't be bothered to have a nice stand to support the monitor? <br> <br>Bottom line: Nice idea, Nice I'tble but your presentation sucks. <br> <br>
You should make your own and show me how it's properly done then.
. . . someday. . .
I'm just curious to know, how exactly does the presentation suck? And the project ended up working well, so why your issues?
While the project itself is a nice idea, and fairly nicely done, the surroundings are trashy. -- read and think about my comment. In effect 'saurus put a gold ring in a pig's snout.
Cool! but...<br> I would have made an extra 'foot' on the frame over the whole width of it, so that the foot of the monitor isn't visible anymore.<br> That way you wouldn't even have to make the frame hang on the monitor.<br> <br> To be safe I would 'never' put an electric circuit with that high a voltage open and reachable like you did.<br> You should have left the circuit in the box. You could have made a hole in the box where the switch is, or you could have connected another safe switch to it.<br> <br> Other than that it's just a great idea.
This is perfect! No mess and no fuss. You also made the frame removable! The sound of a crackling fire would send it over the top! I love it. <br>sunshiine
I love it. As a semi-retired PC repairer I have a number of old laptops lying under the workbench that aren't much use for computing but could handle this perfectly well. <br>I suppose, just for fun, you could video nice fireplaces when you see them and build up a library of 'favourite fireplace' loops and so ring the changes a bit.
It's funny how primal our reaction to fire is. I'm going to have to see if I can get my husband to whip one together for me. (I don't trust myself using any kind of tools, short of knives for cooking--and I've damaged myself more than a few times with those!) thanks for the instructable. I feel its siren call....
Nice instructable. This is very creative and effective.
This is a good fire place www.mediafire.com/?hagvp47dhyzgsaa
Very awesome job! <br> <br>It would be cool if you could make the lights brighten and dim at the same rate the fire does. Maybe measure the brightness of each frame and have an Arduino (or similar) connected via USB to control the lights?
How about a video of a fireplace with cooking bacon? <br> <br>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Qqnk5jy2bA
lol... too clever!!! ;-D
Cool! This reminds me of the old laptop I turned into a digital picture frame, only classier. The lights are a really nice touch!
Looks hot.
I'll send condolences to Mrs. Saurus. Live 120V AC on those Diodes in a blind location behind the monitor.
Nice idea. Years ago here there was some heaters, natural gas fueled, which had appearance of campfire of logs, they were very effective by the feeling they produced, rather than by the heat that they gave
Haha! I love it! I want my monitor to look like that :D
Great ible and most excellent pictures. <br> <br>A

About This Instructable


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Bio: I'm Mike and I make crazy things at Instructables HQ in San Francisco. Follow me and try a few of my projects for yourself!
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