This one took me quite awhile!
This post is the TL;DR. If you're looking for the full story, please keep an eye on LinuxGameCast.com, as the full post should be there soon.
Ever since I saw this album on Imgur, I've been itching to build something like that but for gaming. With the release of the Ryzen 5 2400G, I figured the time was right.
A co-worker mentioned he used to repair and JTag Xbox 360's and how he'd accumulated a bunch of broken consoles. So I asked if he'd part with one so I could carve it out, which he agreed. From there, I went on eBay and bought the power supply and Noctua NH-L9a-AM4. The former was open box new and the latter already had some use.
Feel free to ignore that Intel motherboard. It's sole purpose was to serve as a mock-up for the miniITX screw holes.
The ASRock motherboard, APU, RAM and SSD were bought a bit later as I waited for price drops. The Steam controller I already had, courtesy of a LinuxGameCast fan! You should check out his work, he does some awesome stuff with leather: https://www.mleonarddesigns.com
The extra bits I bought as I went along. Special thanks to shar-kade.com for the awesome work on the Steam logo fan grill.
As for the OS, well I wanted to use SteamOS but version 2 is old and the kernel wouldn't recognise the APU at all. Fedora 28 is far more update and while I can get the system to boot, it's still a crapshoot. Sometimes the GPU modesetting will fail and halt the system boot process, sometimes it will just refuse to boot even though the GPU has clearly been initialised. My only option here is to wait for the software support in Linux to improve for this APU and motherboard.
That said, when it does boot, it boots straight into a custom SteamOS session for Fedora. Be sure to +1 this post from Ethan Lee, as he was the one who actually decided to set out to test the feasibility of using Fedora as a SteamOS replacement.
Benchmarks and more will be available when the main article is finalised.
Hints, thoughts, allegations or things better left unsaid are what I left comments enabled for.