PSU Backplate

Jun 21 2011

When you use a picoPSU in a case with space for a full ATX power supply unit (PSU) two questions can’t help but come up:  how to plug the giant gap in the back, and where to mount the external plug.  In the past I’ve just cut the back off a broken standard PSU and drilled a hole.  While certainly functional, it’s clearly not ideal for everyone as it requires power tools, a sacrificial unit and tolerance for a less visually appealing final product.  Fortunately there is a solution which allows a more polished look and alleviates the need for surgical skill -- sourced from Doug Kenyon, a fellow HTPC enthusiast who mentioned the plate’s existence on AVS Forum.

The panel I received was handmade from black 3/32" ABS plastic, so slight variations between units as well as subtle tells that it was not mass produced should be expected. Doug let me know that the current revision is no longer created entirely by hand anymore, so it will be square (mine wasn't perfect) as well as coming with black screws for a slightly cleaner look. Either way the visible bits are all that is really important--which as we can see from the gallery above blends nicely with the case.  Several variations of the shield are available for ATX and SFX12V cases; I opted for the one with an 80mm fan (in this case a three pin Enermax).  Installation was quick and easy and the fan is quiet, so the only complaint is that he didn’t start making it until I’d already gone through the trouble of crafting a similar device, hurting myself in the process!

At $30 ($20 without the fan), the back plate is a little outside my impulse buy range but well worth it for a sleeker look and potential Band-Aid savings.

Pro:

  • Looks good
  • Finger friendly

Con:

  • Can’t think of any :)
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