Getting Started (Applied Energistics 2) - Starting a ME Network

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Starting your ME Network for Newbies (A reference guide for the Rest Of Us)​

Well, last time I posted a guide on AE2, but this is going to be a more focused guide on how to actually get yourself up and running. I will even include a guide for setting up easy automation of your Inscribers.

Gathering materials

There's some things you are going to need to get started on this project. All four Press Plates for the Inscribers. You really can't go anywhere without them. In my private mod pack, I've added them to the loot tables on Better Dungeons chests, but typically you find them in Meteors. At least one Charged Certus Quartz. Starting with more makes it faster, but you only need a single one to get started. A ready supply of Nether Quartz, Certus Quartz, Iron, Glass, Redstone, and a few other things. I'm not even going to bother mentioning these going forward, I'm going to assume you've probably got plenty floating around by now. You'll also need at least a couple of Diamonds, and a good amount of Gold. A steady and reliable power supply. Your ME Network runs on power. You can't access your stuff in your network if the power goes out.

Laying the Groundwork

There's a few things you will absolutely need to get yourself started, some tools to get you going. Namely: a Charger, an Inscriber, and an Energy Acceptor.

The Charger is going to be the first, and easiest, thing you need. It requires two Fluix Crystals and some Iron. Two Fluix Crystals will be the one charged Certus Quartz I mentioned earlier, one Redstone, and one Nether Quartz tossed into a pool. This requires power, but turns the Certus Quartz to charged Certus Quartz for more Fluix production.

With that out of the way, we need at least one Inscriber to get started with making Chipsets. It isn't much more difficult to craft, just some Iron, two Pistons, and one more Fluix Crystal. If you are able to make multiple Inscribers, you will want to have five of them, but one will do if you are hurting for resources.

We're also going to need something to power it with, which is where the Energy Acceptor comes in. This needs Quartz Glass, which is five Quartz (Certus or Nether, take your pick) and four Glass. Then one more Fluix Crystal and some Iron. This will turn RF (or whatever other power you use) into ME power for your ME Network.

Crystal Growth

You're going to need some Pure Crystal in the near future, which means you need a couple of Crystal Growth Accelerators to get you going.

So let's start with the basics, some Cable. It starts off by making Quartz Fiber, which is three Quartz (either kind) Dust and six Glass to make three of them. Then you take one Quartz Fiber and two Fluix Crystals to make four ME Fluix Cable. This stuff, in addition to connecting everything up, is also used frequently as a component in just about everything.

We're also going to be making a Toggle Bus for... reasons. Trust me, they are important reasons. Two Fluix Cables, a Lever, and some Redstone.

Now we're going to start with the Crystal Growth Accelerators, because you don't want to spend the next two hours waiting for Crystals to grow. These require a Fluix Block, which is four Fluix Crystal, some Quartz Glass, which is five Quartz Dust (either type) and four Glass, some ME Fluix Cable, and a bit of Iron. Each. They are also power hogs, so let me show you how to hook it up properly.

You're going to need to set them at diagonals to each other. In one diagonal, is going to be a Water source block. In the opposite diagonal, is going to be a Fluix Cable. Then attach the Toggle Bus to the Fluix Cable. Then attach a Quartz Fiber directly to the bus (trust me, this is important to avoid eating up a channel on your nascent network), then another Fluix Cable to hook up to your Energy Accepter. Now use a Lever to power the toggle bus to turn on or off the Accelerators, so they don't eat power when not in use. Make sure that the Accelerators are pointed at the water source block, otherwise they will not work.

Combine Certus Crystal Dust with Sand to make two Crystal Seeds, toss them in the Water adjacent the two accelerators, and throw the Lever. While you wait for that, let's get back to the rest of the project.

Steve's First ME Network

An ME Drive can store up to ten disks, so you're going to have plenty of space to grow. It requires two Engineering (diamond) processors. Ouch. So, use the Inscriber, Luke. You only need two chipsets at this point, so it isn't going to kill you to do it manually. Those, plus a couple of Fluix Cables and some Iron and you have your ME Drive!

Now you need a Terminal to access stuff 'on disk'. For this, you need an Illuminated Panel, a Formation Core, an Annihilation Core, and a Logic (Gold) processor. The two cores are a Charged Certus quartz, fluix dust, and Logic Proccessor and Nether Quartz, Fluix Dust, and Logic Processor respectively. The panel is Quartz Glass, Redstone, Glowstone, and an Iron Ingot.

Trust me, these sub-combines are about to get a lot easier in a bit.

Now all we need is a disk. By now, hopefully your Pure Certus Quartz will have finished growing. You're going to need them both to make Calculation (pure certus) processors. One will go into your Crafting Terminal, the other into your 4k disk.

For your Crafting Terminal, take your Terminal you just made, combine with Calculation Processor and a Crafting Table. Done.

For your 4k disk, you're going to need to make some 1k storage components, which is a Logic (gold) processor, Redstone, and some Certus Quartz. If you made a whole batch (like a dozen or so) of Pure Certus, they can be used instead to stretch out your Quartz supply, but regular works too. Three of these, the other Calculation Processors, more Redstone, and some Quartz Glass makes your 4k Storage Component. Quartz Glass, Redstone, and Iron form the housing around the storage component to make the 4k disk.

Drop your ME Drive, put in your disk, put down a cable, and put your interface on the cable. Congratulations, you now have a functioning ME Network!

We Need To Construct Additional Chipsets

This is going to automate your Chipset production. For this, we need some kind of item movement which can filter items. I use EnderIO, but you can use Thermal Dynamics just as easily using Filters.

You are going to set up one Inscriber for each of your four Presses, then filter the input so that the appropriate material is the only one permitted to go in underneath (whitelist). The output comes out the front, and for the three material Chipsets, they go into the bottom of the fifth Inscriber. The Silicon Chipset goes into the top of the fifth Inscriber. Redstone is permitted to go into the middle.

From here, just feed it Silicon, the material of choice, and Redstone. Out pops a fully formed Chipset!

Oh, gets better. Wanna automate this?

Set up an Interface. Tell it to provide one Redstone and one Silicon. It'll chew through about a stack of Silicon, sure, but now the only thing you need to do is feed it whatever material you want, and you get the Processor of choice. Which can then be routed to said Interface. Now, you CAN set up the interface to do that, but that requires at least one Crafting Processor and some blank disks. Or you can just feed it manually for now and build up a stock of Chipsets for future use.

Anyways, it's not that much of a grind, really, once you have the stuff.