Stefmesman's setup (my setup) what, how and why

Discussion in 'Picture Gallery' started by stefmesman, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. stefmesman macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    Stef Mesman's Setup - 17-08-10

    The project:
    When i first started building this setup the things that i wanted where
    no clutter, functionality, design and most of all, a space saving and open look since i have a small room. I posted this here to help you do what i did. and inspire you to get an awesome setup and/or give you ideas of your own to improve yours.

    I started with re-doing my room with a neutral color, dark grey, which i accentuated with my glossy white furniture (home made). started in February 2010. and this is the outcome.

    (a clock i ordered will come on the chimney)
    (click to enlarge)

    The Desk:
    This was probably the most time consuming build i did. Got myself some MDF board. and started sawing. base coating and painting. it can hold my own weight. The audio controller is build into the desk, i needed some precision power tools to get a hole in it that would fit this device perfectly, and besides that. all the cables of the audio controller run through the wood of the desk. (as you see them coming out of the side of the desk) it runs on FW400 but since the late 2009 imac only has FW800 i put in a 400 to 800 cable to make it work.

    cables from left to right:
    Microphone XLR
    L/R Line In (extended to side of desk)
    Balanced Audio out L/R to monitors
    Head phones out (extended to side of desk)
    Firewire cable to iMac (400 to 800)
    Power cable (not necessarily needed. since it also powers on FW)

    (click to enlarge)

    On the front of the desk theres a retractable shelf which has my keyboard on it. (it does not provide much space for your legs but u can still sit comfortable)

    (click to enlarge)

    behind this board is a compartment which has all the cables of the entire setup. Also a ethernet cable runs down to the bottom of the desk. (100Mb/ps connection)
    back compartment of desk: a 10 port USB hub, slave power switch (everything turns on at the switch of my mac) and a lot of cables.

    (click to enlarge)

    side of desk: for this i bought a 7 port usb hub wich had the card reader included. looked just like a black box with ports and nothing else. again used precision tools to get a hole in the side and glue it in. (running the cable through the wood of the desk to the back compartment)
    3 power sockets where installed on the side. with a hole behind them to lead a cable with a plug to the back compartment. the L/R audio in port come from the audio controller. i just used an extension cable, drilled a hole in te side. and glued it into it. the same thing counts for the headphones output.

    (click to enlarge) (the usb hub used to have red LED's soldered green ones inside :)

    The Green board:
    the green board behind the iMac is there for 2 reasons.
    1: i have plastered walls. no way to mount anything on that
    2: to hide cables to the speakers and imac
    the big green board was attached to the wooden poles in between the plaster. this allowed me to mount my equipment anywhere on the green board with no limitation. it also gives a nice touch to the whole.

    (click to enlarge)

    Mounting the beast:
    why mounting? it gives an more open look and creates space. The mount i used is one by ''Vogels'' called the EFW6225. probably one of the only mounts that supports up to 35kg that has a VESA attachment. since the imac is only 15kg it is more then enough to support it. attaching apples VESA adapter is a hassle. but u do need one if u want to mount an iMac. After that i put some IKEA dioders on the back (the pure white ones). these give it a ''modern'' look instead of the colored ones.

    (click to enlarge)

    Sound mounting:
    For my monitor speakers i used a lighter speaker mount by ''Vogels'', the VLB200. These mounts can hold up to 15kg per mount. Getting them on there was quite easy. be sure to level them out exactly. The speakers are connected with balanced TRS plugs. and they run behind the green board.

    (click to enlarge)


    27'' iMac i7, 8gb (late 2009 model)
    KRK Rokit powered limited edition Classic (silver woofer)
    Western digital Desktop elements 2TB
    T.C. Electronic Desktop konnekt 6
    apple wired keyboard with numpad - will be replaced by wireless keyboard
    apple magic mouse
    E-MU x-board 61 (keyboard)
    HP C4780 printer
    Vogels EFW6225 (iMac mount)
    Vogels VLB200 (Speaker mounts)
    IKEA Dioders (behind the iMac)
    Conrad USB multicard reader + 7USB hub metal

    shots where taken with the Sony alpha 300 and Sony Cybershot DSC H55


    things that will still change:
    clock on the chimney
    wireless keyboard
    white lights in the cieling
    hook on the side next to the powersockets for my headphone

    EDIT: just got my new clock :D
    (click to enlarge)

    if you have any questions or suggestions or just things you want to let us/me know. post below :)

    i hope to inspire you guys/girls to build amazing original setups for yourself :D
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Your setup pics in the other thread peaked my interest. I liked the green thing you had going on there and felt it was a nice idea. Wanting to paint my office and add some drastic color has left me a bit hesitant, but your idea gives that color on a smaller scale and I love that.

    I would love to see a daylight pic from afar to get the best feel for the whole space if you don't mind.

    I love the desk, I was looking at buying desks myself but I have a very specific setup need requiring two essential workstations. Building seems the way to go if I can spare the patience.

    I love this thread you've created. If you don't mind the overly intrusive question, what was the approximate cost of material to get this all where you wanted to go?
  3. bartelby macrumors Core


    Jun 16, 2004
    As with jessica. I saw your post in the set up thread.

    I was going to ask about your desk as I've been looking for one like that for years. I had a feeling you were going to say you had made it.

    All I have to say is well done. One of the nicest looking set ups I've seen in a long time.
  4. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    well, the approximate cost of the desk was around 150/200 euros. but that does include 3 weeks of long days working in the garage at night.

    the most expensive thing ull think of when u start is the paint and the wood u need. but do not forget. u need long cables for everything. spend around 100 euros on cables. if i would need to take a wild guess at what everything costed together without the technical equipment it would be:

    wood: 100,-
    paint: 50,-
    gliders for the board: 5,-
    power sockets: 40,-
    cables: 100,-
    connections on the side: 60,-
    mount imac: 100,-
    mount speakers: 40,-

    EDIT: forgot apple's vesa adapter of 30 euros

    around 550,- euros

    as for painting your office, leave it neutral, use white and grey tints, and use 1 saturated color to accentuate and buy accessories in that colour to make the place look more ''fitting'' instead of randomly thrown together.
  5. littleman23408 macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2009
    Looks great. I'd say you accomplished your goals quite easily. When you painted the desk, did you use spray paint cans? Also, you said you used MDF board, I am in the USA, so does anyone know if that is something we can pick up at Lowes or Home Depot (not sure if you have those where you are located). Would MDF board be called something else here in the states?
    Thanks in advance
  6. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
  7. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    we don't have a lowes or home depot here. here's a wikipedia on MDF (Medium-Density Fibreboard) the translation comes from english so i recon they should call it the same there or maybe its used as a proffesional term.

    i used regular paint rollers since spray paint cans only put on a thin layer of paint. paint rollers create a harder surface. and i did accomplish my goals quite easily. but they where very time consuming.
  8. Kendio7 macrumors member

    Jun 3, 2010
    I have to say after seeing your setup, mine looks even more dull and boring!
  9. littleman23408 macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2009
    Thanks again
  10. costabunny macrumors 68020


    May 15, 2008
    Weymouth, UK
    What a beautiful setup. Clearly I can see the effort and passion you put into this. Thank you for sharing the details (and the not so tidy picys of the under-workings).

    Very well done indeed. :)

    (only missing a Macquarium in the corner.... jk)
  11. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    MDF (medium density fiberboard): Yes it is available. It is those pressed sheets of sawdust and wood glue and would usually be in the same aisle as the plywood.

    To the Op: That looks fantastic. I was wondering why you chose MDF as a building material rather than something more durable such as plywood or solid wood boards? Was it the uniform acoustical qualities MDF has over other wood products? Or not having to spend extra time eliminating the appearance of the wood grain when painting?
  12. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    i choose MDF on the walls because is has a higher acoustical quality indeed. the desk is made of MDF because it saves time painting, is easy to manipulate. (making small holes in it etc) solid wood boards and plywood bends more. so is less stable for a desk. and ofcourse because its cheaper. still a 19 y/o student.
  13. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    where can i buy one of those!? haha jk :D
  14. Melrose Suspended


    Dec 12, 2007
    That's awesome. :)

    I love the light effects you have behind the Mac... Very nice all around. Well done.
  15. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Well what you have there is a desk that can easily retail for much higher. The time you put into it is something you can't easily put a price on, but for someone looking for a specific if one is willing to put in the time then it is well worth it. I've gone through many a desks. The longest I've kept a desk now is 3 years, that is two table tops and 8 legs from Ikea. Somehow it's just worked but there is clutter, a war between work and play, and frankly side USB ports are hot. :D
    MDF is at Home Depot, Do It Yourself Center, and Lowes. You won't have any problem finding it.
  16. littleman23408 macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2009
    Thanks velocity and jessica; seeing something like this def motivates me!
  17. jsf8x macrumors 6502


    Feb 28, 2010
    Very Well done. The amount of effort you showed creating your setup is fantastic.
  18. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    so do something about it :D let your creativity go!

    dont wait! get your game on. you can do this! build that desk you have always wanted. and do not forget. before building check out some website's about desktop ergonomics. i build my desk completely by the ergonomic rules. (hight of desk/space between you and the monitor seating hight watching angles etc.)

    to get the most pleasure out of using your mac :D

    after all the hours i spend on it, its great to hear that it shows that i actually did do alot of effort haha :D

    some people think that for a great setup you need an iPhone, ipad, ipod, mac pro server, a zillion monitors and a gigantic desk. but thats not true.
  19. digitalnicotine macrumors 65816


    Jan 11, 2008
    You should upload images to Lifehacker flikr pool. I bet Apartment Therapy/Unplugged would be interested as well. ;)
  20. stefmesman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2010
    i will once everything is fixed. then i will attend such :) for my feeling its not finished yet :p just wanted to share pictures with you guys along the way :)

    i do know lifehacker, dont know of therapy/unplugged. links :D?
  21. brock2621 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 8, 2007
    This is really well executed. I'm actually in the process of designing a new modern desk to build for my setup and this just totally gets me motivated again. Bravo sir. Bravo.
  22. suMMx macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2006
  23. Hans Brix macrumors 6502

    Jun 19, 2010
    This is great. Too lazy to do anything like it myself though. :D
  24. SchneiderMan macrumors G3


    May 25, 2008

Share This Page