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silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas
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Author:  bazo [ Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:22 am ]
Post subject:  silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas

hi,

i want to build a small home server for running xbmc, streaming video/audio, downloading torrents and serving as a nas, running 24/7. it will be located in my bedroom approximately 2 - 2.5m from my bed so it must be as silent as possible. i would like to make it as passive as possible.

the temperature in the room is around 23 degrees celsius, in summer it can get above 30(lots of sunshine). even in the night it keeps its warm.

so far i have decided on these components:

mb: ASUS E45M1-M PRO - integrated cpu and gpu
hdd: 1 60gb ssd for OS, 4x 3TB WD red (will start with one, but plan to add more)
ram : 4GB Corsair low profile

with the case and psu i'm not so sure:
case Bitfenix Prodigy - looks good, can hold all the drivers, perforated, has some fans but i want to let them be plugged out

psu: fanless Seasonic x400

i guess the psu should be enough, maybe even an overkill, but less powerful fanless are not available.

what do you think? my concern is that in the summer the pc will fry itself.

Author:  HellDiverUK [ Tue Feb 05, 2013 2:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas

I think with a fanless PSU, passive cooled motherboard, and a number of drives in a small case is leading to trouble, especially considering your ambient temperatures.

I've also found the AMD E-series APU to be a bit...lacking for XBMC use, especially when you try to play videos that aren't handled natively by the hardware decoder in the GPU. The CPU also chokes up badly on heavy skins on the E-series. For example, my OH's laptop (E-350, 8GB RAM, 1366x768 screen) chokes up using Aeon Nox skin. That skin runs perfectly on our two HTPC machines at 1080p - both HTPC are Intel based, one is a Celeron G530 and the other is an I3-3225, both using the Intel video. The CPU can choke up badly when doing other stuff in the background too - like moving files between RAID arrays, unpacking RAR files, etc. This isn't an issue with the i3, which is why I chose that CPU - with dual cores and hyperthreading at 3.3GHz, there's no issues with the i3 choking up.

One of the HTPC is also my NAS, hosting 3x2TB Seagate Green drives in RAID5, and 2x2TB WD Green in RAID1. There's a few other drives in there too, all in a Fractal Design Define Mini case, and the whole machine is cooled by 2x120mm fans that are barely moving. The PSU is an OCZ CoreXtreme 500W which is a VERY quiet unit. I just use the Intel heatsink, which is mostly stopped (Asus FanXpert keeps it off until needed). It runs MySQL for syncing XBMC libraries, Sickbeard, uTorrent, Couchpotato, SabNZBD+, and XBMC running ontop of Server 2012 which has been modified to look like Windows 8.

The HTPC/NAS is quieter than the electronic buzz emitted by my UPS!

So, to recap, your board choice is a good one if you;re running just a NAS, not so good in my opinion for doing NAS & HTPC duties together

Author:  kuzzia [ Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:27 am ]
Post subject:  Re: silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas

According to this Anandtech review it is unwise to choose a modular PSU because it's longer (usually 160 mm vs. 140 mm for a non-modular unit).

I also don't see the need for RAM with a heatsink unless, of course, it costs the same as generic RAM.

Author:  bazo [ Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:58 am ]
Post subject:  Re: silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas

HellDiverUK wrote:
I've also found the AMD E-series APU to be a bit...lacking for XBMC use, especially when you try to play videos that aren't handled natively by the hardware decoder in the GPU. The CPU also chokes up badly on heavy skins on the E-series. For example, my OH's laptop (E-350, 8GB RAM, 1366x768 screen) chokes up using Aeon Nox skin. That skin runs perfectly on our two HTPC machines at 1080p - both HTPC are Intel based, one is a Celeron G530 and the other is an I3-3225, both using the Intel video. The CPU can choke up badly when doing other stuff in the background too - like moving files between RAID arrays, unpacking RAR files, etc. This isn't an issue with the i3, which is why I chose that CPU - with dual cores and hyperthreading at 3.3GHz, there's no issues with the i3 choking up.


what about the power consumption of the i3? if it is to be running 24/7 it can't eat 70W in idle. skin is not an issue the default one is just ok, i would mainly use the remote on my ipad.

don't plan to have any raid just a bunch of disks

HellDiverUK wrote:
One of the HTPC is also my NAS, hosting 3x2TB Seagate Green drives in RAID5, and 2x2TB WD Green in RAID1. There's a few other drives in there too, all in a Fractal Design Define Mini case, and the whole machine is cooled by 2x120mm fans that are barely moving. The PSU is an OCZ CoreXtreme 500W which is a VERY quiet unit. I just use the Intel heatsink, which is mostly stopped (Asus FanXpert keeps it off until needed). It runs MySQL for syncing XBMC libraries, Sickbeard, uTorrent, Couchpotato, SabNZBD+, and XBMC running ontop of Server 2012 which has been modified to look like Windows 8.

The HTPC/NAS is quieter than the electronic buzz emitted by my UPS!

So, to recap, your board choice is a good one if you;re running just a NAS, not so good in my opinion for doing NAS & HTPC duties together


if the i3 could suck only 18W as the e-450 i would go for the same setup.

i guess i will just buy a synology nas and use it with my raspberry pi, as it is quite hard to buy any decent parts in here

Author:  HFat [ Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:19 am ]
Post subject:  Re: silent pc - xbmc, torrents, nas

HFat wrote:
get a G530 and underclock it

correction: I didn't realize the equivalent Ivy part had just been released. I've seen it at retailers in the meantime. If your mobo of choice supports it, definitely spend an extra 4$ or something on the G1610.

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