BC1T Open Benchtable Pre-Order Now Available

From November 1, 2020, you can pre-order the BC1T Open Benchtable. The pre-orders are expected to start shipping out from mid-November and arrive on your doorstep not much later. The BC1T Open Benchtable is available exclusively through the Open Benchtable web store for the next couple of months.

Open Benchtable Product Family

The Open Benchtable project set out to create an open testbed platform for PC components, adapting to the evolving needs of PC enthusiasts and IT professionals. The project has now developed a range of benchtable products that are highly suited to the needs of a travelling PC enthusiast, overclocker, or any professional who needs to test components efficiently.

The lightweight BC1 Open Benchtable has received praise from tech enthusiast and reviewer worldwide including prestigious awards from Red Dot and iF Design. Eminently portable and fully integrated, Open Benchtable products contain all the components needed to set up a full system. Blueprints are open-source allowing the platform to grow and evolve.

The BC1T Open Benchtable is the seventh addition to the Open Benchtable product family.

The original Silver version launched all the way back in 2016 as a community edition of the Streacom BC1. In 2017 the product family expanded with the popular additional color variants Black and Red. Later that year, the full-size bench tables were joined with a triplet of tiny BC1 Mini for the small form factor fanatics.

This year, we expand the product family In celebration of our partner Streacom’s 10 year anniversary with the Titanium color variant.

Introducing BC1T Open Benchtable, A New Member of the BC1 Open Benchtable Family

In celebration of our partner Streacom’s 10 year anniversary, the BC1T Open Benchtable adds a new color variant to the product family.

October 15, 2020 – The Open Benchtable Project is today delighted to announce the official arrival of the BC1T, a new color variant of the lightweight, toolless benchtable in celebration of our partner Streacom’s 10 year anniversary. The test bench developed in close collaboration with Streacom, the BC1 Open Benchtable is a community-inspired open pc case that has won awards from Red Dot and iF Design in recognition of its portability, aesthetics and design prowess.

bc1t open benchtable angle

As part of the activities to mark the 10 year anniversary of its founding, Streacom is introducing a new colour option and we are pleased to include the BC1 in this rollout. We call this new colour ‘Titanium’ grey, and it has been carefully selected to complement the existing black and silver colours, offering a midway natural colour choice.

Shimon Simon, Head of Design and Manufacturing at Streacom

We wholeheartedly congratulate Streacom for marking its 10 year anniversary. In today’s fast-moving business world that is no mean feat. Our journey with Streacom started in 2015 and our collaboration gave birth to the world’s best PC test bench. It’s been an honor and real pleasure to work with such a talented team, and we look forward to many more years to come.

Pieter-Jan Plaisier, Co-Founder at Open Benchtable

Open Benchtable Product Family History

Since the launch of the original Open Benchtable in 2016, we have expanded the product family significantly.

In 2017 we introduced additional color variants Black and Red for the full-size BC1. Later that year, we released the tiny BC1 Mini for the small form factor fanatics. In 2018 the BC1 variants were upgraded to V1.1 and included additional features. Somewhere along the way we also helped customers who lost equipment by introducing a Screw Kit.

In celebration of our partner Streacom’s 10 year anniversary, today we expand the family with the Titanium color variant.

The BC1T Open Benchtable offers the same features like the other color variants, including:

  • Support for XL-ATX, E-ATX, ATX, Micro ATX, Mini ATX and Mini ITX motherboards
  • Open Benchtable traveler sleeve
  • Highly portable and toolless design
  • Integrated legs
  • Brackets for radiators and fans
  • Two types of motherboard standoffs
  • Full length PCIe standoffs supporting up to four graphics cards
  • Mounting support for ATX power supplies
  • Support for up to two drives
  • Anti-slip rubber feet
  • Kensington security lock
  • Compatibility with a long list of community-made extensions

The BC1T Open Benchtable Edition is available exclusively on obt.com for pre-order from November 1, 2020, and is expected to start shipping two weeks later. The BC1T Open Benchtable is listed at $199 USD (traveler sleeve and shipping included).

About the Open Benchtable Project

The Open Benchtable project set out to create an open testbed platform for PC components, adapting to the evolving needs of PC enthusiasts and IT professionals. The project has now developed a range of benchtable products that are highly suited to the needs of a travelling PC enthusiast, overclocker, or any professional who needs to test components efficiently.

The lightweight BC1 Open Benchtable has received praise from tech enthusiast and reviewer worldwide including prestigious awards from Red Dot and iF Design. Eminently portable and fully integrated, Open Benchtable products contain all the components needed to set up a full system. Blueprint of the actual BC1 product are open-source allowing the platform to grow and evolve.

Questions or enquiries related to the Open Benchtable project can be sent to: contact@openbenchtable.com

Mid-Autumn Festival 2020 from Oct 1 to Oct 5 – Shipping Delayed

As the Mid-Autumn Festival (中秋節) 2020 celebrations are about to get underway, we’d like to inform you about the impact the festivities will have on shipments and order processing.

Our China-based partners will not process orders between October 1st and October 5th. The online store, customer support and community forum are not affected. We expected operations to resume gradually after the celebration period. All orders placed during the celebration period will be processed once the logistics team is back in action.

Also, we’d like to inform you that all products are back in stock with sufficient quantity.

The entire Open Benchtable team wishes you Zhōngqiū jié kuàilè (中秋節快樂) (a happy Mid-Autumn Festival) and may you enjoy the many mooncake pastries!

LPC Debug Card With Power Buttons Free With Next 50 BC1

In this limited promotion Open Benchtable is offering a free ElmorLabs LPC Debug Card with every purchase of a full size BC1 Open Benchtable.

With each purchase of any of the BC1 SKUs (Black, Red, Silver) you will receive a code to order an additional Open Benchtable branded Elmorlabs P80DB2 LPC Debug Card. The debug card allows you to display motherboard debug information sent to port 80 on the LPC bus, even if there’s no on-board display on your motherboard. The device also features handy power on and reset buttons.

The debug card can be easily mounted in multiple positions on the Open Benchtable:

  • 2 positions on each of the short ends of the benchtable (near the PSU or the SSD)
  • Multiple positions using the PCIe brackets

ElmorLabs P80DB2 LPC Debug Card

The P80DB2 card allows you to display motherboard debug information sent to port 80 on the LPC bus, even if there’s no on-board display on your motherboard. It uses an Altera/Intel Max V CPLD which decodes the LPC bus and displays the debug codes on a 7-segment display. The prerequisite is that there’s a TPM or LPC debug header on the motherboard. Pinouts of the card, cables and standard motherboard headers can be found here.

This updated version has an improved full surface mount design with JST PH-headers for simple and reliable connection to the debug card. It also has M4 mounting holes (60×20 mm) for attaching to a suitable case.

This product comes with:

  • 1x 30cm cables for ASUS/Gigabyte motherboards (2×5 2.00mm LPC/TPM header)
  • 1x 30cm cables for MSI motherboards (2×7 2.0mm JTPM header)
  • 1x 30cm cables for ASRock motherboards (2×9 2.0mm TMPS header)
  • 1x 30cm cables for power and reset buttons (front panel header)

The promotion runs from October 1, 2020 (00:01 HK Time), until supply of 50pcs lasts! Please do let us know what you think about this promotion. We’d love to hear from you!

Free Shipping Continues Despite COVID-19 Freight Cost Impact

In this blog post we explain why Open Benchtable will continue to offer free shipping despite the COVID-19 impact on freight costs.

How Does International Shipping Work?

In normal times there are multiple ways of shipping a product from the factory to the customer. The most common methods are shipping by air and shipping by sea. While shipping by sea is much cheaper, it takes a lot longer to get the package to the final destination. Furthermore, to achieve a much lower transportation cost you want to ship out products by container. Since Open Benchtable ships directly to the end-user, this is not an ideal option.

Air freight is typically more expensive than sea freight, in particular when shipping with companies like DHL that have their own fleet. However, the cost can be reduced by working with transportation companies that use the empty cargo space in passenger planes. According to Flexport.com, “More than 50% of airfreight flies in the cargo holds of passenger planes. For Transatlantic lanes, that number rises to about 80%.” Sadly, due to COVID-19 most passenger planes are grounded.

Source: Seabury Global Capacity Update, April 3rd, 2020

According to the April 3 Seabury global capacity report, global air cargo capacity has dropped 35% from last year.

At the same time, the demand for essential personal protective equipment (PPE) has skyrocketed. Especially the Chinese producers have ramped up production as COVID-19 spread globally. The PPE demand is urgent and requires priority shipping, meaning it eats up any space on the sparsely available passenger airlines. According to Neel Jones Shah,EVP, and Global Head of Airfreight at Flexport: “Demand for PPE has ratcheted up the usual level of demand for air.”

The rapid decline in supply of air freight options and rapid increase in demand for PPE shipments has caused a big shock to the logistic cost. According to Flexport.com:

What we see in the air freight market is unprecedented. Pricing is breaking all records and falls well outside the past five years’ range of prices. But nowhere is the exponential increase more dramatic than in the Transpacific trade lane. China to North America spot airfreight pricing is now well north of 10 USD per kilogram, and full freighters are selling above 1M USD per flight—and increasing every week. Looking at the China to Europe airfreight rates, the news is not much better, having seemingly tripled in the past month. On top of that: Some ground-handlers in North America and the EU are imposing COVID-19 emergency support surcharges.

Impact on Open Benchtable Free Shipping Policy

Our own experience is similar to what is reported by Flexport. The transportation costs have increased across the supply chain: from factory to warehouse, from warehouse to forwarder, from forwarder to warehouse, and from warehouse to the final customer. Even for popular routes like China to USA, we’ve seen quotations for logistic double over the past couple of weeks!

Just like any responsible business, we considered how this sudden increase in freight cost has impacted our operational costs. The profit margin per sale will decrease significantly if the logistic prices remain elevated. While we are certainly not happy about the situation, we have decided to continue to offer free shipping to our customers for the foreseeable future* because two main reasons:

  1. We are successful thanks to you, our customer. We feel that in challenging times, it’s up to us to give back to the community and take the hits from increased shipping costs for as long as possible.
  2. We hope that the increased demand in the market will incentivize new players to join the global logistic industry and that logistic prices will come down on the short-term (3 to 6 months)

While we maintain the free shipping for the foreseeable future, we will keep a close eye on the logistic cost. In case the prices increase further we may need to revisit this decision. As per usual, if you’re in the market for a premium benchtable you can check out the variety of options on our Where To Buy page.

We wish everyone who is affected by COVID-19 to stay safe and healthy, and make the best of a bad situation!

(Picture by Dominic Alves)

* Some remote destinations can carry extra cost.

Chinese New Year 2020 from Jan 15 to Feb 2 – Updated #3

Update 2020-02-21: Shipment resumed couple of days ago. Most packages are on the way. Delivery time might take a few extra days due to limited crew operating at departing facilities.

Update 2020-02-13: Shipments are on-hold until Feb. 19th at best. More information are expected at this date depending on the situation.
Important update
: Due to the outbreak of the 2019-nCoV virus in Mainland China, our production and shipping partners informed us that delay will occur in reestablishing business as usual.

As of this update (Feb. 2nd) we do not expect any shipment before February 15th at best. We are monitoring the situation and will be updating this space with new information once shipping will resume.

If you have recently passed an order with us, don’t worry, your orders are secured and it will ship once the situation goes back to normal. Also the virus is not expected to spread on packages.

As the Chinese New Year 2020 celebrations are about to get underway, we’d like to inform you about the impact the festivities will have on shipments and order processing.

Our China-based partners will not process orders between January 15th and February 2nd. The online store, customer support and community forum are not affected. We expected operations to resume gradually after the celebration period. All orders placed during the celebration period will be processed once the logistics team is back in action.

Also, we’d like to inform you that all products are back in stock with sufficient quantity.

The entire Open Benchtable team wishes you Xīnnián kuàilè (新年快樂) (a happy New Year). May the Year of the Rat bring great fortune and prosperity to you and your families!

PC Building Simulator Features Open Benchtable

In the latest update of PC Building Simulator you can now put together and use the best computer test bench in the virtual world

Building PCs is a Game?

Officially released in January 2019, the ultimate PC Building Simulator (PCBS) challenges computer enthusiasts to build their own PC empire from scratch. The game allows you to build incredible PC systems with the world’s best and most prominent hardware. You can build anything! From simple repair to amazing boutique creations, you’re only limited by your own imagination. The game offers an expansive marketplace full of real-world components.

PCBS also offers a career mode which puts you in charge of your own PC building business. From your own cozy workshop, you must rely on all your technical skills to complete the various jobs that come your way. The game is widely recognized by enthusiasts as an ideal first stepping stone to building your own PC.

Virtual Open Benchtable

Thanks to the kind effort of the developers over at The Irregular Corporation, the developers of PCBS, the Open Benchtable is now available in-game. You can use any of three available varieties of the original ATX-size Open Benchtable in black, red or silver. Use the virtual Open Benchtable to test a new configuration before installing it in the chassis or as the basis for a sleek and compact open-air build. We gave the virtual benchtable a try a couple of days ago and can tell you it’s almost as good as the real deal!

Check out some in-game screenshots below. In case you’re looking for the real-world equivalent of the virtual Open Benchtable, head over to the webshop. You can find the Open Benchtable also in the retail channel by Streacom as the BC1 Open Benchtable.

Download PC Building Simulator

If you like to try out building your very own virtual Open Benchtable, check out the game on your favorite platform :

First steps with the Open Benchtable in PC Building Simulator

VRM fan bracket by NOCTUA – Community projects

Much to our delight NOCTUA showed a creative custom VRM fan bracket for the Open Benchtable earlier this year at the Computex 2019 trade-show. This is the story of the “what and why”, and how you can get one yourself.

Computex During Taiwan Summer Time

Computex is one of the most important tradeshows for technology and the PC hardware industry. It is held every year around the beginning of June in Taipei, Taiwan. Taiwan holds a special place in the hearts of many technology enthusiasts as it is the home of some of the biggest brands in the PC industry. Every year the Taiwanese companies, as well as a range of international companies, show off their new products during the week-long event. That week Taipei is a hot spot not only because of the innovation but, as many tech journalists will confirm, also because the humid summer weather.

Among the international brands is NOCTUA, an Austrian company world renowned for their premium CPU heatsink and fans. At Computex 2019 NOCTUA demonstrated an upcoming refresh of the chunky NH D15 CPU cooler.

NOCTUA NH D15 featured in Vertical Wall Mount

The VRM Cooling Challenge

NOCTUA used a high performance platform featuring an overclocked AMD Ryzen™ Threadripper™ 2990WX Processor to demonstrate the cooling capability of the NH-D15. While the CPU consumes over 435W, the CPU cooler is more than capable of handling the associated thermal challenge. However, as witnessed on other high-end desktop platforms, it’s the VRM that presents a real cooling challenge.

The VRM, or Voltage Regulator Module, are a group of electrical components that ensure efficient and stable conversion from the +5V or +12V input to the voltage used by the CPU. Contemporary CPUs will use any voltage in the range of +0.6V up to +1.5V. Additionally, the high core count CPUs will draw a lot of current especially during intensive workloads like 3D rendering. While the conversion process is not that complicated and has seen many decades of development, the conversion isn’t 100% efficient. The inefficiency is translated in, among other things, increased heat dissipation.

noctua custom vrm fan bracket
Noctua custom VRM fan bracket

VRM Fan Bracket To The Rescue!

With higher and higher power draw from the CPUs, VRM cooling is increasingly challenging. With our high-end CPU coolers, we often run into situations where the CPU is still well below its maximum temperature but VRMs are already throttling. Unfortunately, many of the heatsinks that motherboard vendors put on the VRMs appear to have been created with a key focus on visual design rather than best thermal performance, so sometimes, your best bet is to add some extra airflow. Thankfully, this is super-easy to do with the OBT, so when we created our demo system and discovered that the VRMs were running too hot, we quickly sketched a fan bracket, CNC-milled it and a few hours later we were ready to roll!

Jakob D. – NOCTUA

The simplest solution to ensure the VRM cooling solution can handle the extreme power conversion is to increase airflow over the heatsink fins. Of course, that’s a simple job for a company widely praised for its superior air cooling solutions!

The NF-A6x25 PWM VRM fans feature advanced aerodynamic design measures such as Flow Acceleration Channels and Noctua’s AAO frame. As such, the NF-A6x25 is a highly optimized, premium quality quiet fan in 60x25mm size. The PWM version sports Noctua’s custom designed NE-FD1 IC for fully automatic speed control via 4-pin fan headers and comes with a Low-Noise-Adaptor to reduce the maximum speed during PWM control from 3000 to 2100rpm.

NOCTUA NF-A6x25 Product Page: https://noctua.at/en/nf-a6x25-pwm

With the fan choice out of the way, the only thing left is to attach the additional cooling to the Open Benchtable. Using the open-source Open Benchtable blueprint, NOCTUA designed custom VRM fan bracket that supports up to two fans aimed directly at the motherboard VRM.

2x NOCTUA NF-A6x25 PWM mounted on the custom VRM fan bracket
Two NOCTUA NF-A6x25 PWM mounted on the custom VRM fan bracket

Design Done Right

With a design-focused mindset as a core value, NOCTUA couldn’t “ghetto-mod” this Open Benchtable extension. So NOCTUA designed an aluminum bracket that matches the design and style of the Open Benchtable.

3D render of Noctua's custom vrm fan bracket

For Computex 2019, we CNC milled the bracket from aluminum, but it can also be 3D printed. The bracket has been designed for use with the Noctua NF-A6x25 series fans, which can be mounted to the bracket using the supplied NA-AV1 anti-vibration-mounts: https://noctua.at/en/nf-a6x25-pwm

Post Computex, NOCTUA published the blueprint of the custom VRM fan bracket. It is available in the community project section on openbenchtable.com.

Working with the Open Benchtable for our demo systems was pure bliss. As an engineering company, we have a special appreciation for products that are cleverly designed, where everything just falls into place and works as expected, even if you do something that goes beyond the usual scope of application. The same goes for the impeccable craftsmanship of the OBT, it’s rare to find a product that not only doesn’t have any sharp edges but is so well crafted that it’s actually a pleasure to touch and use.

Jakob D. – NOCTUA

Get Your Own Custom VRM Fan Bracket

There are two ways to get a hold of this custom VRM fan bracket. You can either 3D Print your own bracket with the files available on the community page. Or, you can order the kit directly from NOCTUA via the community page. NOCTUA’s kit comes with two NF-A6x25 fans and anti-vibration mounts.

We would like to thank Jakob and the team at NOCTUA for contributing to the Open Benchtable community and sharing their story in this blog post.

Chinese New Year 2019 – Shipments delayed (edit)

A brief update to inform you that shipments will be delayed during Chinese New Year Celebrations.

Our China-based partners will not process order between January 25th and February 11th 20th. Our online store, customer support and community forum are not affected. We expected operation to resume gradually after the celebration period. All order passed during the celebration period will be processed the following week.

We take the opportunity of this update to let you know another bits of info: The Open Benchtable Silver was sold-out the past week, we have added a very limited amount of units, all other models, size and colors are available, so don’t wait until it runs out.

From the office here in Taipei, Taiwan, we would like to wish you Xīnnián kuàilè (新年快樂) (a happy New Year) on behalf of the entire Open Benchtable team. May the Year of the Pig bring great fortune and prosperity to you and your family!

Photo by bady qb 

EDIT: An original version of this news post indicated that shipping would resume gradually on February 11th. Informations has been received that it would be the following week.

Benchy McBenchface by p0pe in the OBT podcast

Sharing is caring. We truly believe in that motto and this blog post is dedicated to share some love about the OBT and how YOU build with it.

We sat down with Hans Peder aka p0pe to talk about Benchy McBenchface, a mod based on the Open Benchtable. Listen to get exclusive insights and interesting bits about p0pe’s modding journey all the way to the Dreamhack Open CaseMod Championship.

We also set up a full transcript of the Interview for those of you that like to read.

OBT Podcast #1 – Benchy McBenchFace by p0pe


A very good looking PC has everything to catch your eyes, and when it’s built with a powerful system : it gets me excited ! I got sit down with Hans Peder also known as p0pe, the highly respected case modder from Denmark.

Hans Peder has been modding PC for more than a decade and he recently won the DREAMHACK CASE MOD CHAMPIONSHIP 2017 with Benchy McBenchFace, a mod based on the Open Benchtable.

Today I chat to Hans Peder about how he gets to create some of the best looking PC in the world.

We talk about his story in the modding scene. How he turns a piece of acrylic into a fully-featured distribution plate. How he overcomes challenges with new builds…

My Name is Isaïe aka Trouffman from the Open Benchtable Project, and this is the OBT-Podcast.

———– Intro Music sequence ———–


Thank you Hans Peder for joining us in this podcast and share your story.

Let’s start with a little bit of yourself and the journey toward your modding hobby.  how did that happen?


Well, it’s long story. I think it started about eleven years ago. I got my first PC with some really old components and decided that I didn’t really like the outside look off the case so a tour of one of the side panels and just went to town with it with a with a drill and a hammer and some mesh that i cut out from an old and trash can. I put on some eighty millimeters LED fans… in orange. And that was basically how I started and from there on everything just escalated.


We are here now, you are a well-respected face in the modding industry. Would you consider that as a full time job or just something you learn and do on the side?


It was only something that i was doing on the side when I started : I was in what you guys probably call “elementary school”. Then when I got to high school I started out doing a bit more advanced stuff with them [modding project, ed.]. I really get myself into CAD drawings and liked drawing things up in 3D and trying to get the machine laser cutting and stuff. So from high school and then on to university, I really taught myself like, a lot of different ways to thought of and manufacture them [mod pieces, ed.].


So, you do manufacture all your stuff by yourself, like you have a CNC and Laser engraving access.


I started up by doing it. We had a CNC and a laser cutter at my university. From there I learned how to program the CNC to do the code for it, put the material, etc. Basically i did everything myself back then, but back then in times where i don’t have access to it CNC machine, i have friends who work at machine shops that can lend me some or do the actual machining myself [themselves, ed.].


That’s cool, so you do all the CAD drawing for everything, and then you can send that for production


yeah, exactly. But for everything i have this philosophy : “everything that i can do myself in the case mod what i will do myself”.


Let’s focus on your mod based on the Open Benchtable because that’s what this is podcast is all about. What is the creative process you follow to do that kind of mod ?

Well, it all of my mods starts up with basically one component. Some of them starts out with a motherboard that i want to do some built around other mods starts out with a water cooling system.

For this one, i just fell in love with the with the design of the Open Benchtable. I’m a huge sucker for well designed CNC machined or just generally well-fabricated parts. So it was something i knew i needed to get my hands on.

I got you guys to actually send me one just to see if it was something I wanted to try to build in.

In the beginning i just wanted to do a simple build with some sleeving and a simple watercooling system. But as my case mods tends to do from time to time everything just escalated… and here i am…


It became rather quickly complex…


Yes, exactly! because i’m not very good at restraining myself.

When i first got into this kind of things, the ideas just start rolling, so i tried it out. I just decided that i wanted to do something huge with them, with distro plates [watercooling distribution plate, ed.] and water cooling and a lot of cabling while still keeping it as an actual benchtable. I didn’t want it to go too far away from the original design idea.


Is this the reason why this mod is all open and accessible ?


Yes exactly!

I wanted to also [try it, ed.] because one of the challenges of doing a build like this is that there’s no shroud to hide stuff behind. You can’t just take all of your ugly wires and put them behind a motherboard tray and say : “look what i built”. Doing this actual build where everything can be seen even if you look under the motherboard. So so there’s no places to hide anything


That was the biggest challenge for putting up that mod?


Yeah. Like i always try not to just shovel everything into a compartiment on the rear side of a case. For example, half of the case is good looking and the other half it’s, like an ugly bird’s nest. For this one is was especially challenging because, there is nothing that it’s not visible all of the time. Like if you look at it from the front and you just look like a tiny bit down, you’ll see the PSU and if you look a bit up, you’ll see the rest of the components. So it’s just that open.


You cannot mess up on the wiring of that !


No, no, no, I had a few wires that, i think, where five millimeters too long, so I ended up just tearing them out and just redoing it. They just look silly when installed. It was very unforgiven to try and make it look good. [ed.] actually develop, what’s called, then she back, bench face.


The outcome is pretty impressive, good job on that!


Thank you


The mod is called Benchy McBenchface, where does this name come from?


Normally when i do a case mod, i try to find out, some super serious name that flies really well with the progress on the actual mod.

For this one, i don’t know, i guess i just got tired of trying to be super serious about it all the time. So i remembered back to when the internet was supposed to do a vote on what an arctic exploration boat was going to be called, that was going to be called Boaty McBoatFace. So i basically just got the inspiration from there, and i thought the Benchy McBenchface was kind of catchy.


It is catchy indeed! That’s very nice to hear the story behind it, actually… I love it.

You talk about the distribution plate for the watercooling, the one you made for Benchy McBenchface, that’s one of the biggest distro-plate I’ve seen outside of a case. You are accommodating the CPU, the VGA, you have dual pumps, you even have quick release just underneath.

I wonder how you managed to put all that in the same complex setup.

Yes, it was a nightmare!  The entire plate is… it’s a bit hard to explain… but normally when you make distribution plate you will just have two flat plates that are screwed together.

For this one i needed to have one plate that was ten millimeters in one side and then eighteen millimeters in the other side to fit the pumps in. It had to have two levels. To design, to machine that and to to polish it up was just a super nightmare.

You can see it : If you look in the front of the casemod, you can see where the pumps are. Right behind those, the acrylic plate it’s attached to, it gets thinner. There’s a kind of an off a recess there.

They’re just so massive! Both plates has been milled out from solid twenty five millimeter acrylic blocks. So much material has been taken off.


You posted pictures on your facebook page. It’s impressive what you can do with a block of RAW material and end-up with this glass-looking result. How many times did you had to polish it to get this look ?


Polishing is super [sssuuupppeeerrr, ed.] time consuming and it’s also why you’ll see that a lot of the guys who does these plates end up not polishing them. Because it just takes so much time.

For this one i had to first, for each of the blocks, to sand down starting from grain 400 then moving on to 800, 1000, 1500, 2000 and 2500. Both of the huge acrylic pieces had to be sanded with that, which probably took like ten hours or something. It is stupid amount of hours!

After the sanding I would polish it first with a rough polisher and then a medium polisher and then a finisher. The entire polishing process was it just took so much time.


There are so much special bezels and corners and things that must have been difficult to get perfect.


Yes, exactly. There is so many chamfers on these edges all around so it’s not just a square piece of acrylic there is tiny details all over the place.


The result is, for sure, impressive.

Did that happen to you that you broke a distribution plate in the past while polishing it and you had to start all over again?

No, not while polishing. While machining, yes, stuff broke. One of the main acrylic plates for this one actually did break while machining it. So i had to redo that one, which was a bummer because material like that is actually rather expensive.  But, yeah, such is life. You you learn from your mistakes.


There was some comment online about the mod regarding cooling operations on reddit. With the distro plate connected to the CPU and the Graphic Cards but there is no radiators nor reservoir.


That is one of the super funny things about this build. It is also the kind of stuff that i get a lot of questions about :

  1. There’s no radiator
  2. There is no Reservoirs.

The radiators is a funny story because i kinda wanted this built without radiators. I can actually also run it [this build, ed.] without a reservoir.

On the side of the build there are two quick disconnect fittings. The main idea when building this was that those quick disconnect fittings would go to a radiator station that i have here at home.

It’s not very pretty but it’s super functional. That thing it would cool the entire build.

When i went to Dreamhack I forgot a radiator. I was supposed to bring a radiator so that the build could be running a game up-there but i only remembered to bring the reservoir. While setting it up, i was like frantically looking around asking people if they had a spare radiator but no one had any. So i thought “ok i have to ASUS 1080Ti Poseidon Graphic Cards on here.

These are hybrid cards which means they have a water block and they have fans on them. My theory was that if i just disabled SLI so i only ran the system with one graphic card maybe these two Graphic Cards could act as radiators and dissipate all off the heat.

And it worked ! The fluid never got above 40*C while playing Battlefield 1, and that is, with a 16 core Threadripper CPU and 1080Ti just smashing out heat.


That’s crazy.


Yeah, so so these two graphic cards actually managed to keep the entire system cold for an entire week while, playing Battlefield 1 on it like, sixteen hours a day.


That is definitely an interesting way to look at it!

You went on to that extend because you had to run games on the rig to participate in the modding competition ?


It was because i had to have it at the at ASUS booth to be on display there. We hooked it up to to a 34 inch ultra wide monitor for people to play games (Battlefield 1) on there.

One of the rules and the competition is that you have to have a functioning PC. In other competitions around the world you’ll see guys just putting a motherboard into, you know, a huge metal bucket, and then say that that is a working motherboard. But for Dreamhack you actually have to have a functioning PC for it to be accepted.

But that was the second story of it as I have to have it on display at the at the ASUS booth. I wanted to really show that this is not just something that is here for fun, and it can actually work. And it’s going to be my main main daily driver.


As it is you daily PC, you have a double 1080Ti and Threadripper. I guess you use the extra radiator and extra reservoir as well ?


Right now, they’re actually just sitting loose because i’m in the middle of moving. Also I’m in the middle of building another external radiator in the same design as the distro plate that is on the bench here.


Interesting! We are looking forward to see the result for that.

Speaking of the distro plate again, you used some special joint, was that made custom or you have a few tricks up your sleeve to ensure it is tight sealed.

The o’ring is a funny thing. Most of the stuff people ask is about the o’ring : “How to join it together?”, “How to make sure it does not leak?”, “Which o-ring to use?”…

There’s two ways of going about this : You can either take some o’ring string and then cut it and glue it together. Or you get o’ring in specific length, which is what I do because it’s a bit safer and there is there’s absolutely no chance of it leaking. You don’t have trace of glued seal somewhere [on the distroplate, ed.].

What i do is that i start out by designing my parts and then i check if everything fits. When i’m in the final stages of the design i check if i can o’rings in those actual length. If i cannot i will adjust the designed to accommodate so that it fits the available sizes online.


So that is though off right from the design phase.


Yeah exactly. I test out like i do with the general CAD design of the o’ring channels to make it so that it it looks like i want to have it looking. Then i test if there’s anything that fits this. normally it’s only within a few millimeters that i have to correct it.


Very nice! In term of pressure testing, I saw on one of your facebook update that you add a pressure gauge thing to test for leaks or is it for the rigidity of the distro?


Both actually. When you do a distro-plate like this it’s very cumbersome to put fluid in it, figure out there’s a leak, having to take everything apart.

What i do is that i just test with air instead. If there’s a leak then i don’t have to clean up the huge mess that is fluid all over.

I test by pressurizing into it and i think my pre-test goes up to half a bar [above atmospheric pressure, ed.]. If anything is going to break or if anything’s going to leak it’s going to be doing it at that point.

I don’t have to worry about flowing going like all over the place and i’m also completely sure that this thing will last a lifetime because no water cooling system is going to get to that kind of pressure.


Do you leave that overnight and then check the variation ?


Yeah there’s a there’s a pressure gauge and on there so i can see if it drops in pressure overnight.


That’s a very good way to not mess up your hardware and make sure everything work well.


Yes and it actually blows my mind that fewer people are using these. It’s such a clever way to avoid seeing if you have forgotten to screw in a plug somewhere. And the moment you start testing with fluid, you’re basically just betting your entire life earning or saving that you just put into your pc that you didn’t mess up…


And there’s no insurance for “oops I forgot to test”!


No, exactly! At least you have to have a very good insurance for that.


Not sure it would last long.

Let’s talk about cable management, I remember back when you worked on this Benchy McBenchface you posted an update talking about “Training your cables”, with special cable combs. How is this important for the final result ?


These cables are made for theses components. Cable management is is one of my big love, or how you would say it : “I really enjoyed doing my own cables, making them completely custom to length, so that they’re just-in there and looking great.”

That also come with a downside, that you have to spend an absurd amount of time on it. I designed the cable combs so that there was a bit off guidance for the cables. Also, because if they’re just lose and when transporting it, when it’s all open, they will just flip all around the place.


How do you plan doing your cables as the cable combs are not removable ?


The way i do my cables is that i finish the end that goes into the components. First, for example, the end that goes into the graphic cards and then i just make the cables ten centimeters longer than i’ve measured them out to be.  I route them all the way around into the power supply, and then i cut them off to link in the actual power supply. This way they get the exact length that they need to be going from the components and down. Once i’ve done the cable management, there is no easy way to just take out the cables off the off.


That mean this build has to stay like this for a long time.

Yes, for example, with this one, the connector on the a Asus cards is flipped compared to normal graphic cards. So if i wanted to take out theses graphics cards and put in a 1080ti Founders Edition… the cables would no longer fit.

That is one of the downsides of doing it this way because it doesn’t get particularly modular. For example, with that motherboard as well, the 8 PIN EPS connector is in a really weird location. If i were to plug another motherboard into this system, i probably have to redo a lot of the cables.


Damn ! Let’s say that your system with Threadripper and the dual 1080Ti is good for quite some time.


yeah, that should last me at least another couple of months. The silly thing is that the only game that i play at the moment is PUBG and that doesn’t utilize SLI at all.So so one of the graphic arts is basically just there to look good.


Saying that you will make enemies with the prices of graphic cards recently. As you mentioned earlier you can always use the second card as a radiator.


I’m actually right now i only have a two 80 millimeter radiator that hook up to the entire thing. And it’s surprisingly cool for such a low amount of radiator space.



I remember you had to cut out your M.2 heat spreader as well to make it fit in the build.


Oh, yes, that was a there was a strange little operation because i wanted to put two of the EK heat things on the M.2 drives because I know that they get quite hot. When i put those on and i put it on the riser card for the motherboard, i was hitting some small components on the riser card.

I had to take, like one of my saw and then cut off a chunk of the heatsink and miraculously it still works. On one of the M.2 drive there is one of the temperature sensors that it’s constantly registering eighty four degrees, even though it has just been plugged-in. So i think that i broke something. Other than that, they work perfectly.


With this mod Benchy McBenchface you won the Dreamhack Case Mod Championship at Dreamhack Winter in 2017.

How was the journey towards the convention, was that something you intend to do and participate or you entered the competition last minute ?


I had thought to join DreamHack, but i was not sure that i was going to be making it or able to make it. In the last week up until DreamHack, i assembled the distro-plate, I made all of the cables and did all of the final assembly of the built. So i did not sleep for four days, and then i slept all the way up there in the car, while my buddy drove there. So it was tight, but but i made it .


You entered the competition with a rather unique take on the approach. How was the competition spirit with the other contestant ?


The competition in the Dreamhack is always really tough. There’s a lot of swedish guys there. I don’t know why, but compared to the danish modding scene, the swedish [modding, ed.] scene is just so much bigger. There is so many more skilled guys up there.

I actually did not really post anything, any pictures with the distro-plate. I just posted the final pictures of all the sleeving and the components on the actual test bench in hopes of tricking the guys up there to think that it was all that i brought.


Then you show up at the competition displaying the complete mod with the full distro plate out of the blue.



I like to believe that it took them by surprise. They’ve only seen the pictures with the cables in place. In my mind they saw it [the pictures, ed.] and they thought, hey, we can easily beat that. And then they put on the main part.


Along your career as a modder is that the first time you play with a full open-air system ?


I haven’t really seen that many open air system. I think that the ones I’ve seen has been recently with inwin when making their new cases. A lot of them are open air.

Having an open air case is, what you call it, a gamble. Especially at events because people can just go in there and just take your ram’s out.

I had one guy at a Dreamhack who went up to the case and just put his finger on the ram block and just started wiggling it back and forth until the system rebooted.

He just shrug his shoulders then he walked off… I thought “what are you doing?”.

I think that a lot of people are [like that, ed.] also because it’s untraditional. I think that’s the reason why we don’t see a lot of these kind of builds as well.


You were nominated as well for the Bit Tech Mod of the Year in 2017, another well recognized modding contest in Europe.

Do you usually submit all your mods to competitions?


No. There’s a bunch of case mods that i actually never even got to post pictures. Sometimes you’re just so busy building these things, that the whole documenting and taking pictures could be too time consuming. It’s the same thing with joining all the case modding competitions. Because, for most of them, you have to have a large work log. Most of the other ones you have to write in and nominate yourself and fill out a huge questionnaire. I did that like a few years back, but right now i simply do not have the time for it.


You recently got the OpenBenchtable Mini version as well, maybe there will be something coming as well.


Maybe, Yeah! I’m in the planning stages for it. My planning stages normally take, half a year, if not more. So don’t expect anything soon.


So other modders you are warned, you still have a good 6 month before the Mini is modded by p0pe. We still don’t know what it will look like at this point.


Yes that’s how I normally do sponsorships and build. I write to people and say “I have an idea, it’s going to be insane. I need these parts. Are you interested ?” “Yes we are interested, can you show us some renders ?” “No I can’t show you render because I havent started designing it yet, I just have the idea.”


Fantastic. This has been an interesting discussion with you, p0pe. Thank you for your time and sharing your story about Benchy McBenchface. We hope to talk to you again soon.


You’re welcome, thank you for your time.


This was an exclusive discussion with Hans Peder Stahl, better known as p0pe, about his mod Benchy McBenchface based on the Open Benchtable.

Don’t forget to check out the website openbenchtable.com for more content and to get your Open Benchtable & Open Benchtable Mini today, available in silver, black and red.


Editor’s note:

Big thank you to Elsa M. for the help on the transcription!

Thanks to Timothée P. (Xyala) for the extra audio recording.

Thanks to OverClocking-TV for the edit & hosting of the video.


Let us know what you think of the podcast and your questions about modding on the OBT family.