So far, my evil desk replacement plan has gone relatively well.
The riser that came with my new desk places the monitor too high for my tastes, and was kind of edge to edge. To compensate, I’ve replaced it with a decent monitor arm. In general: I tend to prefer my monitors lower when they’re larger / further away and high up there when they’re smaller / closer. My goal was to open room under neath for a laptop to be docked not change the monitor positioning.
On the flip side, my LG was pretty darn painless to replace its integrated stand with the arm. Using the arm also gives me better cable management and unlike the un-adjustable one my monitor came with; I could always add binder clips to it. Hehe.
Speaking of binder clips: since I had to rewire all the things, I added a pair to the back of my desk. One to the left to keep the monitor’s power brick from moving around and one to the right to retain the incoming Ethernet cable. I also fed my mouse and probably speaker data cables through it before routing accordingly.
To facilitate fast swapping between Rimuru and a laptop, I got myself a fancy USB-C hub. The USB-A hub affixed to monitor via velcro is now connected to one of its USB-A ports and my speaker is in its USB-C data port. Mouse, web camera, and Xbox adapter are in the USB-A hub on the monitor. Pretty much fetch an HDMI cable and network cable out of the closet and it’s a one cable swap to my work MBP, and a second cable for its charger.
Because the hub’s cable can’t reach Rimuru’s 10 Gbit/s USB-C card and the 5 Gbit/s hub on the monitor was barely reaching one of Rimuru’s motherboard USB-A ports, the solution was a 10 Gbit/s USB-C extension cable running from his expansion card to the hub. That extension cable is retained by the same binder clip as the monitor’s power supply, so it won’t fall off between the narrow gap between desk and wall when swapping cables. ‘Cuz I know how that goes ;).
To facilitate this “All the things follow one cable” plan creates a bottle neck but considering that this bottle neck is a 10 Gbit/s, I don’t really mind. Most of my USB-A peripherals have limited power and data requirements. We’re talking about whether the 1080p web cam or the simple speakers draw more juice. Not trying to power a spinning hard drive and a desk lamp.
An added benefit of this novel approach is I’ve worked around an annoying problem.
Back when my first USB floppy drive went bork-bork, I had a spell where some of Rimuru’s USB-A ports seemed dead, then went back to working. In the months (~year) since then most of his ports behave in a way that makes me believe that most of the fuses are blown. As a consequence, peripherals have generally been moved to the USB-A hub on the monitor and it connected to one of the still good ports on the motherboard’s I/O panel.
Given that whatever the warranty status and pain in the assery of that might be, it’s probably a good thing my Real Focus on connectivity has been USB-C stuff, it’s probably a good thing that I bought that 10 Gbit/s expansion card for two more C ports. Considering the fuses are probably under the big ass heat sinkage and tiny as !@#$ to desoldier and replace, I’m going with definitely was a good plan to buy that expansion card.
Moving things to my one cable swap all the equipment plan kind of removes this problem. But to cope with it, I’m thinking of two more changes. Another hub on the back of the monitor that keeps the mouse/camera from sticking out the side, and a 5 Gbit/s expansion card to put some A ports where my motherboard’s PCI-E x1 slot is available. Since 10 Gbit/s requires an x4 slot, that’s already consumed by my USB-C expansion card.
Ahh, the joy of computers. Fuck them all.