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What to put in an otherwise useless 5.25" drive bay?

Hi,

Any ideas what to do with an otherwise useless 5.25" drive bay (desktop)?

Currently I have a broken optical drive there (*), and of course I could put a working one here instead, but seems like I would get better QOL with just some eye candy instead. Or, it could also be something useful, like USB type C ports, since I don't currently have any on my desktop. Perhaps there exist some slim drive + useful port -combinations out there? Perhaps there's some other uses I could not even think about. Even something like a useless cup holder just for giggles would be something I'd consider 馃槈. If there was a 5.25" floppy + 3.5" floppy + usb type-C combo unit for such drive bays, I would by it in a heartbeat - with or without RGB, but I would prefer one with RGB! 馃槅

What are your thoughts? Have you found any fun uses for these drive bays? Searches can find many cheap combo units, and for example, expensive and cool-as-s*t -looking聽fan controllers! Military style H/W switch!

Useless and useful suggestions are welcome!


In my case (no pun intended), there is ample space inside the computer otherwise, but this could be a general discussion thread for uses for these bays. Some might consider using it for a drive bay reservoir or pump for water cooling, though in my case I think there are other, better use(lessnessee)s!

Cheers!

p.s. was not sure if this or the cases section would be better, decided to post here in the end...

*) I rarely use optical media these days, and noticed my old optical drive on my desktop seems dead anyways (or, it's reasonably probable it has a broken cable, but could also be the drive itself)

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Drawers are cheap to mess around with, can mod with holes, lights and all the RGBs if your keen to cut into it.

#Cheap being the Primary reason to cut into it and mess around.


https://www.umart.com.au/DESKTOP-5-25--ACCESSORIES-DRAWER_24491G.html
24491.jpg

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56 minutes ago, Derkoli said:

I highly doubt anything like this are being anymore and Yellowdog had something like this as well with a PowerPC Chip and used Yellowdog Linux that you plug into a 5 1/2 Bay. In case anyone cares:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellow_Dog_Linux

40 minutes ago, SkilledRebuilds said:

Drawers are cheap to mess around with, can mod with holes, lights and all the RGBs if your keen to cut into it.

#Cheap being the Primary reason to cut into it and mess around.


https://www.umart.com.au/DESKTOP-5-25--ACCESSORIES-DRAWER_24491G.html
24491.jpg

This at least would be useful for me since I have clutter on my desk and tend to lose stuff in said clutter.

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I'm leaning on these drawers at the moment.

Not that much bling/RGB, but in principle it is easy to mod whatever one wants later on 馃槈 . USB Type C? Add your own port & hole! Knobs for fan control? Sure, can be done! LCD-screen? Fits! You may still have some room to keep a receipt or something afterwards inside the drawer 馃槈

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  • 1 month later...

Hotswap 3.5inch drive bay (If your motherboard supports hotswap SATA).

Orico makes one for 24.99$ Canadian, and it's basic af, but i love mine. (Unavailable at this time, sorry)

Make sure you get the trayless ones. Then you can just聽shove聽bare drives in and聽Voila!聽, pretty quick storage.

Pretty much like how LMG was storing stuff before Linus got the NAS-bug.聽

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On 10/26/2020 at 6:27 AM, Wild Penquin said:

Currently I have a broken optical drive there (*), and of course I could put a working one here instead, but seems like I would get better QOL with just some eye candy instead

I have to be 'that guy',

If the optical drive tray is not opening reliably when you hit eject, the solution is just clean the rubber belt inside (visible when the tray is opened). If the laser is really dirty, it can be cleaned. With the price of optical drives nowadays, nobody bothrers though :(

Optical drives are so cheap and so undervalued today, but to me they have always been precious. So there it is, the most boring response to this otherwise fun thread.

:)

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There is nothing wrong with the drive opening, and I have hard time believing the laser is dirty (the drive has seen very little use altogether).

I get spurious I/O errors in the logs from that drive even when no media is inserted - so it could be a faulty SATA cable. But, the drive also takes a very, very long time trying to identify any disk - and fails. It could also be faulty electronics in the drive (this could explain both the SATA errors and inability to recognize media)

Part of the problem is the fact the drives are cheap. And by that I don't mean the price but the fact they are made cheaply and fail prematurely. Often it is the motor spinning the drive which will fail or the mechanism moving the head will fail (prematurely). Those are not user serviceable parts, really. I've never actually had a dirty laser, as I generally don't put dirty discs in the drive (I can see that happening if there are for example kids using the computer).

But the most important point is,聽 that optical media is mostly useless as it's been superseded by the internet (and streaming). Only when I get a new (for me) CD/DVD/Bluray I want to back up to my personal collection for easier playback (CDs & DVDs are just inconvenient, and ripping removes this inconvenience in subsequent use). But that happens very rarely, but TBH still does so I still need an optical drive. An external drive I can connect to any computer once in a blue moon is much more worthwhile than an internal one. Seems that external drives are a bit more expensive, but perhaps they are more durable.

P.s. seems like I'm another one of "those guys"! 馃槅

Edited by Wild Penquin
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On 12/9/2020 at 11:03 PM, Wild Penquin said:

I get spurious I/O errors in the logs from that drive even when no media is inserted - so it could be a faulty SATA cable. But, the drive also takes a very, very long time trying to identify any disk - and fails. It could also be faulty electronics in the drive (this could explain both the SATA errors and inability to recognize media)

Ah bummer. We don't like these types of problems!

There is evidence to suggest they 'don't-make-them-like-they-used-to' today. But for the unbelievably low prices they are selling for, I can't say I'm surprised. If somebody told me in 1997 that it would one day looik like this (under $20 a drive)...I'd never have believed it.

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