Talking of modding I did a funky little mod on my daughters PC a couple of years ago.
She has an AMD Athlon powered Shuttle XPC; then with a grey anodised case and rather plain looking front panel.
I planned up a flower image using Google Sketch Up (available upon request) and then used my trusty Dremel (with a little help from a jigsaw) to cut it out of both sides of the case. The next step was to remove all the anodising, using ever finer grits of sandpaper, and polish up the underlying aluminium chassis. I then added some black mesh behind the flower cuts & dropped in a couple of pink 6 inch cold cathodes.
Finally I removed the backing sheet from the font panel, cut out a new one, using some white card and a scalpel, and let Alice (said daughter) colour it in; et voilà.
I’m no modding expert by any means but it kept me quiet for a good few hours and was well worth all the hard work. The system is still going strong today and Alice still loves her flower mod.
I changed the OPAMPS on my Creative X-Fi Fatal1ty a year or two ago and thought you may well be interested in seeing some pictures of the mod in progress. A very worthwhile upgrade if you’re reasonably competent with a soldering iron. When I say reasonably anyone could perform this mod by watching a few online soldering tutorials and practising on an old circuit board.
I’ve since bought a Creative X-Fi Fatal1ty Titanium and performed the same mod with equal success.
Click on the images to enlarge.
The aim of this modification is to bring the sound quality of the X-Fi somewhat closer to that of cards like the Auzentech X-Meridian, meaning you will end up with a card with excellent sound quality and retain good gaming performance. Although listening tests are obviously subjective, I have yet to meet anybody who’s performed this mod who has not been bowled over by the quality improvement. If you take the time to do it properly, it is unlikely you will regret it. It goes without saying that this mod is irrelevant to anybody using only the digital output of the card, since the DAC + analogue stage will be in the target device and those on the card go unused.
Full article and instructions on how to achieve this mod and obtain the necessary parts can be found here