Briefcase PC Built by a Woman.

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Introduction: Briefcase PC Built by a Woman.

About: I'm a startup founder, trader and I build a briefcase pc.

STEP 1: Write Down The Materials To Use:

  • Balsa wood
  • 3” screen monitor
  • AMD RYZEN 5 3500X 3.6GHZ
  • 35MB AMD CPU (6C/6T)
  • GIGABYTE B550 AORUS PRO A
  • WIFI AM4 ATX DDR4
  • CORSAIR VENGEANCE LPX3600416GB (2X8GB) KIT CL18 DDR4 (RYZEN)
  • ADATA XPG SX8200 2TB PRO
  • 2 PCIE NVME SSD
  • THERMAL TAKE TOUGH POWER
  • GRAND RGB 650W 80+ GOLD FM (10 YEARS)
  • MICROSOFT WINDOWS 10 PRO
  • OEM 65BIT
  • MSI RADEON RX 5600XT MECH
  • 0C 6GB GDD56 PCI-E (4.0)

(The brands and tech specifications are up to you).

Supplies

If you are based in Singapore, you can find the supplies and components at Funan and Sim Lim Square shopping centres. I bought the br

Step 1: Let Me Introduce Myself:

Hello there, My name is Kathleen I’m a fintech startup founder, trader, and tech hobbyist. I work remotely on weekdays and I feed my hobby on the weekend. I blog about building briefcase pc and this time I am writing about a pink gaming briefcase pc version with thoughtful instructions. Disclaimer: I am not a developer or an engineer to give you a professional instructable article. I’m only a tech hobbyist and I share what I understand, I advise based on my experience, and then you need to figure it out, alright? 😂

As a frustrated pro video gamer, I used the latest graphics card for all my games, and no I don’t have to show it off on Twitch (as I am really “shy in-camera”) I only play video games without streaming it. Meaning when I play a game it is for pure pleasure only. However, I needed another computer to have a better processor and software. Unfortunately, my HP Envy laptop and first briefcase pc do not have the best technical specifications that I needed.

I was considering buying Alienware m17 R3 or Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 but these two gaming laptops are too expensive.

Moving on.

I’ve thought to build a gaming briefcase pc but this time it has a personality, a different vibe, and a better processor.

(Here's where I post the updates of my workshop on Instagram and Twitter).

Step 2: Purchase a Briefcase.

I was thinking to buy a pink makeup briefcase however, most makeup cases have 2-4 layers which means it will be impossible for me to install the motherboard and power supply inside. There is no enough space. So, I bought a black briefcase from Aliexpress and viola it arrived in Singapore after two weeks from China.

Step 3: Prepare the Tools.

I have basic tools that are good enough to fix whatever needs to be done at home such as screwdrivers, pliers, craft knife, fine sharpie/pencil, wireless USB dongle, small screws, extra computer speakers, hot glue gun, and etc. This is the reason why I don’t have long nails. So, take note to all techy ladies out there if you are planning to build your briefcase pc cut your long nails because darlings, you will ruin your fancy gel nails. 💅

MEAP-PREP & PATIENCE

If you are thinking to build a briefcase pc expect you can’t get it done within 24-hours unless you’re an engineer, you know what you are doing and you have nothing else to do other than to feed your hobby then I guess you can build it easily. Before anything else prepare your meals for 2-3 days, if you indulge in junk foods don’t buy Cheetos that will stain your fingers. haha

Above all, you must have a lot of patience. To engineer a briefcase you can’t be impatient, and whine because there are a lot of technical issues to work on. You won’t be able to fix everything in one day. It does take some time to do it, girl.

Step 4: Preparation.

  1. Before you layout everything, you must first take everything out of the briefcase. Remove the padding and whatever is inside your briefcase. You won’t need them anyway.
  2. Prepare the basic tools ready – power supply, motherboard, hard drive, speakers, etc.
  3. Don’t forget to message your loved ones you are not missing and that you are just busy building something at home. Haha.
  4. Take selfies (optional). 😁

Step 5: Lay It All Out.

Okay, after you clean and prepare everything time to take of the components you will be using and plan the layout of how you want to place them in the briefcase. Make sure the arrangements will work in wiring, USB ports and etc.

Personally, I like the power supply place on the left then the motherboard and graphics card in the middle, fans on top, and speakers on the wall. Please note, no matter how you want to layout your briefcase pc your components still have to be connected to one another. Therefore, it is better to plan the layout and be structured. You don’t want to dig so many holes but the wiring and components can’t connect together. Measure like an engineer is key.

Step 6: Build the Components

WARNING: DO NOT DO THIS AT HOME IF YOU HAVE NOT DONE ANY PHYSICS CLASS OR YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW IT WORKS. IT CAN BURN YOUR HOUSE! Haha, The power supply contains components that operate at very high voltage.

Here’s what I used:

POWER SUPPLY: I bought a brand called Thermaltake, it has RGB 256 colours PSU fan, low ripple noise, fully modular flat cables, 100% Japanese capacitors, 10-year warranty, tough power grand RGB 650W and high amperage single +12V rail design.

POWER SUPPLY CONNECTOR SPECIFICATION: main power connector 24 PIN (x1), ATX 12V 4+4 (x1), SATA 5 PIN (x9), PCI-4 6+2 PIN (x4), Peripheral 4 PIN (x4), and Floppy Adapter (x1).

GAMING MOTHERBOARD: B550 AORUS PRO AC, it has CPU support with 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen Processors, CPU socket at AMD socket AM4, chipset AMD B550 Chipset, Graphics Interface 1 PCIe 4.0/3.0×16, display interface HDMI, memory type duel-channel DDR4, and etc.

It has also 2.5 GbE LAN up to 2.5x Faster than Gigabit Port. The brand Aorus is one of the best gaming motherboards anyone can build for their CPU.

GRAPHICS CARD: I used the AMD Radeon 5600 XT it has RDNA architecture, 7nm GPU, GDDR6 memory, power efficiency, PCI express 4.0 support, video streaming up to 8k, Displayport 1.4 w. DSC, Radeon image sharpening, async compute, Radeon freesync 2 HDR, Radeon VR ready premium, Radeon software, Radeon boots, and day-0 game driver optimizations.

Other components I bought:

Fans USBs LED’s Audio Ports Ethernet Port Power Connector Power Button.

Step 7: Build the Cover.

After I lay out the components and tested the wire and cords together, I draw the layout in plywood to cover it. I put three holes for the fans.

The plywood is not wide enough so I have to make an extra layer and put it together using hot glue.

Mount the screen

I bought a 17” monitor and I mount on the screen. I cut a square size in plywood to mount the screen and I used the glue gun to stick it together.

Next, I installed the display control board and menu buttons followed by installing Windows 10.

After that I connect all of the components together. This is the second major focus in building a briefcase pc, you need to pay attention to detail and start connecting the wires together correctly. If it is not done right, the graphics card and motherboard won’t work.

Cover Panel 1

I used a cover panel with plywood to stand the keyboard, and mouse pad.

For speakers, I used a craft knife to create a small box to place the speakers. I bought two small speakers and I tested it well. It works fine so far. Haha!

For the keyboard, I just bought a standard keyboard to use. To build a briefcase pc, it does not have to be expensive or perfect. The most important are the components to work well and it is functional.

Step 8: Cover Panel 2

I’m feminine so I added a pink vinyl wallpaper in the cover panel to give an aha girl look. Haha.

Wallpaper (next phase)

Since I am working in a startup and hustling in trading, I don’t really have a lot of free time to build a briefcase pc. Hence, I can only feed my hobby on the weekend. I am thinking to add either foam or wallpaper. Stay tuned!

Step 9: Here's How It Looks Inside.

The proper layout of components is important to work well.

Step 10: How It Looks Like

I tested the software and I included antenna for Wifi.

Step 11: Pink Gaming Briefcase PC (Phase 3).

It is only in phase 3 because I still need to add either wallpaper or foam. I will only be able to do it next weekend.

Step 12: Tips to Techy Builders.

After work and building your #briefcasepc have a break – meet your girlfriends, hit the gym, watch a movie on #Netflix or take a long nap. Don’t get burnt. It’s okay to have fun, balance work, and hobby, and stay glam. Don’t let the opinion of others ruin your vibe. haha!

Step 13: ​Lessons I Learned While Building It.

  1. I learned to be patient because without it is impossible to build.
  2. Focus is key, especially when building the components.
  3. Know your materials because if you forget one thing, you might end up doing it again from scratch.
  4. It is not necessary to build an expensive briefcase pc. Build what you can afford.
  5. Be structured and work as an engineer.

Why I am building it.

Lockdown (self-explanatory lol).

I embrace self-compassion.

I’m a half introvert and half extrovert. Obviously, I’m an ultimate geek inside hence my patience to have social interaction does not last more than 2 hours lol. I always like to do my thing alone so when I build a briefcase pc, I find it relaxing and peaceful.

Thank you for reading. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram.

Step 14: Briefcase PC for Gaming.

I am currently preparing for my YouTube channel. Hence, I upgraded my graphics card and practicing in games before live stream.

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    4 Comments

    0
    tundrawolf89
    tundrawolf89

    12 months ago

    Wow ! What a clever idea. I want one 😎.

    But I'd want mine to be much smaller and lighter. Trying to imagine carrying the PSU, monitor and all other hardware (omg and the speakers!!! ) And it doesn't seem practical.

    But if you were to convert to more of a Suit Case style design, perhaps on wheels like you see people use in colleges of even business professionals.

    What are your temperatures looking like? It must be stifling in that case when doing any games. And forgive me if I missed it, but how are you powering it?

    0
    startupnomad
    startupnomad

    Reply 11 months ago

    Thank you.

    Yes, it does not look practical at all and it is heavy. I only use it at home. However, I've built another briefcase pc slim and light version using a Raspberry Pi. I will write about it once I have time.

    The suitcase is simple as I can't find a suitcase that stylish and also I can tear apart to put the components. Maybe in my phase 5-7 version, I will work on the design.

    The temp is about 70 degrees C. I use ADX power supply and no battery. I will create another version with a battery.

    Stay tuned!

    0
    seamster
    seamster

    1 year ago

    Great project, nicely done. Thank you for sharing the process and details!

    0
    startupnomad
    startupnomad

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you.