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Arch Hokie 06
2008-03-12, 18:18
Anyone have any thoughts on this machine?

Background: I'm looking to buy a Mini ITX system to run Ubuntu/Slim Center for my new Duet. I fear that NAS devices would be too underpowered to properly run SS7.0, I don't want any performance issues in terms of navigating my music, therefore I've thought of building a Mini ITX.

For $469 I'm looking to build this Harddriveless system. The plan would be to add a 3.5" HDD myself. RAID is not a concern as I would back it up with a USB HDD. I only have a laptop and would not consider an attached USB drive on the laptop. Complete silence so that it can sit in my living/bedroom is a must. My CD collection is nearing 300 and would be encoded in FLAC. The computer would be hard wired (as is my Duet) to my router.

SolidLogic GS-L02 Fanless Mini-ITX System - Blank Front
EPIA LN10000EG 1 GHz
1 GB DDR2 667 RAM
Transcend IDE Flash Module (40 Pin) 2GB

I would house the OS on the Flash Module as I understand that the OS HDD must constantly run under Linux. By having the HDD as a secondary drive, I understand that it could power down when not in use (I am not a linux guru but have installed/used Ubuntu and feel highly comfortable with it).

I would look to add a 3.5" HDD to the case such as
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD5000KSRTL 500 GB 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s.

The total price would be $600 before shipping. I believe this machine would consume less power and have far more storage than a Mac Mini at the same price as the 80GB Mini, as well as being open source and upgradeable.

Anyone have an opinion that has built a Mini-ITX box before? Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

rperkin
2008-03-12, 19:04
I assume you have seen this:
http://www.ulverston.myzen.co.uk/mini-itx/

Kind regards

Honva
2008-03-12, 19:46
Looks like a good system. However, $600 price seems to be too high for any real saving. If you look at reviews on the web, this kind of configuration will typically run at 27-38W during serving and 5W while suspended. For reliable service, you will need a UPS as well.

I would suggest to consider the following options as well.
1. If you really like mini-ITX format, wait till May/June for the Intel Atom and Centrino 2 arrival. Estimated to have 10-15W system and runs a lot faster than the Via processor. Price unknown yet.

2. A 2G Eee PC and an external drive. Same performance and price is only ~$400. Power will be 20-22W serving, 2W while suspended. You get a keyboard and display free. The battery will provide you UPS function as well.

3. If size does not matter, my kind of system is dirt cheap. A underclock (1GHz)and undervolt AMD x2 3600 CPU on a Asus M2A-VM motherboard + WD CS green series hard drive. Power consumption is 40W while serving, 1.5W while suspended. Speed wise, it runs circles around the via board and powerful enough to run other applications. You do not need any fans at all. You can save another 2W if you only put 1 piece of RAM in it. Cost is $350-$400, depends on which computer case you choose.

pichonCalavera
2008-03-12, 20:35
I read somewhere that this PC: http://us.shuttle.com/kpc/index2.htm from Shuttle will launch in mid-april, at CES this year they said a barebones setup will cost $99 and the regular setup will cost $200. If it turns out ok, it seems like a great deal for a dedicated SC machine.

Krishna
2008-03-13, 11:35
I recently built a mini-ITX system (based on mick_w's website). It is similar to the one you are attempting.

Here is what I used:
Case + Motherboard + Memory [$290]
Travla C158 Mini-ITX Case with 60/90W PS
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/c158b_60w ($107)
Via EPIA CN10000 Fanless C7 Mini-ITX
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/ln10000eg ($137)
1GB Ultra-low profile DDR2 522 ($46)
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/128mlq64v5vl

Hard Disk Drives [$134]
OS Drive: Seagate Momentus 5400.3 ST960813AS 2.5" 60GB 5400rpm 8MB SATA-150
http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=ST960813AS-R&cat=HDD ($34)
Data Drive: Samsung Spinpoint T-Series HD501LJ 3.5” 500GB 7200rpm 16MB SATA-300
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152052 ($105)

Cables [$10]
2x SATA to Molex power supply adapter cable & SATA data cable ($5 each)

Total = $434

I am using ClarkConnect and running it in headless mode. After applying all the tweaks, the Data drive does spin down and the OS drive is always spinning.