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Christmas Shopping for a new Intel Mini PC - 2014

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  • #46
    Gone back to liking the specifications of the ASRock Q1900-ITX or the one above pictured at around $200 (its really faster but higher powered).

    It is priced with the quad core celeron and goes up to 16Gb of RAM. Its a mini itx.

    Motherboard uses 10 watts of power (which is good). price though will be more $200 which is not good.



    1 - ASRock Q1900-ITX with quad core CPU - ~ 80.00
    2 - 16Gb of memory - Crucial 16Gb ~100.00
    3 - MicroPSU
    4 - 1-2 SATA SSD Hard drives
    5 - case
    6 - Wintel OS - ~100
    - Pete

    Auto mator
    Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
    Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
    HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
    HS4 Lite -

    X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

    Comment


    • #47
      Originally posted by Pete View Post
      Gone back to liking the specifications of the ASRock Q1900-ITX or the one above pictured at around $200 (its really faster but higher powered).

      It is priced with the quad core celeron and goes up to 16Gb of RAM. Its a mini itx.

      Motherboard uses 10 watts of power (which is good). price though will be more $200 which is not good.



      1 - ASRock Q1900-ITX with quad core CPU - ~ 80.00
      2 - 16Gb of memory - Crucial 16Gb ~100.00
      3 - MicroPSU
      4 - 1-2 SATA SSD Hard drives
      5 - case
      6 - Wintel OS - ~100
      In that case, you might be interested in a slight variation, which is nearly the same, but has a DC jack so it can be powered externally from a brick or a DC UPS: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-495-_-Product

      I can see the value now in running HS3 on Windows: all the plug-ins currently work on Windows, but not all do on Linux.

      Does the Windows version of HS3 also run on Mono, or does Windows HS3 run a bit closer to the metal, and hence faster on equivalent hardware? I'd be curious to know.

      Comment


      • #48
        Thank you ND.

        Does the Windows version of HS3 also run on Mono
        No and yes. Mono originally was written for Linux. The wiki:

        The stated purpose of Mono is not only to be able to run Microsoft .NET applications cross-platform, but also to bring better development tools to Linux developers. Mono can be run on many software systems including Android, most Linux distributions, BSD, OS X, Windows, Solaris, and even some game consoles such as PlayStation 3, Wii, and Xbox 360.
        There is also that OS political thing of why use Linux when you can run Windows or why use Windows when you can run Linux. Personally I do not think Wintel wants folks to run Wintel application in free Linux; but that is a guess. Look at all those MS disclaimers when you are installing VB and MS Fonts to Linux.

        Microsoft has all that dot net stuff built in and you do not see it. Here playing with Wine I had to remove the mono stuff and install the dot net stuff to be able to get certain wintel programs to run. I still don't know all I did to get stuff to run though cuz I threw the kitchen sink at the Wine stuff in Ubuntu. It works though. IE: HSTouch for Wintel works better in Wine than HSTouch for Linux running in Mono. Maybe its just me though.

        I did a quickie look at a comparison between the new quad core Q1900 and the G3220. The G3220 is favored by the writer of the comparison. It's faster but uses a bit more power. The Q1900 combo CPU motherboard is more expensive than a G3220 combo CPU and motherboard. Memory is cheap at 2Gb but goes up with 16Gb (my current favorite). Multiple I/O is similiar. The BCM boards I use utilize one DC jack in the back for a brick which is nice. The D525 motherboard using a standard power connector which I had installed a PicoPSU on to utilize a 12VDC brick. SSD is SSD except you can get SATA SSD or using the mini PCiE connector card SSD which is nice. You don't really need much more than 32Gb of disk space to run Homeseer 3.

        I can see the value now in running HS3 on Windows: all the plug-ins currently work on Windows, but not all do on Linux.
        Yup.

        Lots of it is just related to an upper or lower alpha character or a backslash or forward slash. It gets more involved though.

        The use of mono is supposed to make it the same though.

        Just noticed that the Z-Wave plugin for Windows is different than the run for Linux. There is an OS error in the log when you run the Wintel Z-Wave plugin in Linux or the Linux plugin in Windows. BUT you can run the Windows Z-Wave plugin in Linux remotely talking to a Wintel Homeseer 3 mothership (you get an error but that should be fixed soon - maybe?).
        - Pete

        Auto mator
        Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
        Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
        HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
        HS4 Lite -

        X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

        Comment


        • #49
          I acquired the Zotac zbox (above). In Windows it idles at around 4-5 watts (I measured using a Killawatt type meter). I suspect sleeping the video output will save some more. So far, the highest I've seen it climb is 10 watts while finishing the Windows install. Watching a youtube video takes about 7 watts. I'm presently installing Debian as a dual boot onto it. If that works, I'll measure power consumed running Linux HS3Pro and also get a gauge on CPU load. With windows, about 1 GB of memory is free, and Windows takes the rest.

          Comment


          • #50
            I installed the current version of HS3Pro and the current z-wave plug-in on the zbox. I can't do much of a true comparison until I find out which z-wave files I need to migrate from my old system so that I don't need to rebuild everything. However, subjectively speaking, I'm relieved that the zbox seems to be much faster than my old 32-bit Pentium 4 2.53Ghz single core CPU, even though the clock rate on the new system is only 1.4ghz. Perhaps some of the speed improvement can be attributed to running on the zbox's SSD drive instead of an old HDD.

            Interestingly, under Linux, the zbox idles at 7 watts (both before and after the HS3Pro installation), which is higher than than the 4-5 watts while idling that I measured on the windows installation above. What are the tricks for getting better power efficiency out of Linux while idling?

            So far I haven't seen the Linux HS3Pro consume more than 10 or 11 watts, which is pretty much the same as what I saw under windows too.

            Comment


            • #51
              Very nice ND.

              What are the tricks for getting better power efficiency out of Linux while idling?
              There is tons of stuff out there mostly GUI related for active adjustments and much today has become a bit a plug n play standard with Ubuntu server and desktop.

              Here I install Webmin on the Server for checking on it and monitoring it. In Webmin there are applications (plugins) which will graph CPU / memory utilization.

              Personally though I have left it alone relating to HS3 running on the RPi, 32 and 64 bit machines. Thinking the defaults know what to set it to.

              There are GUI desktop applications though to watch.

              I just read that its a "sin" to install a GUI on an Ubuntu server; well its the server folks stating that.

              On the RPi do have a monitoring program running which graphs CPU utilization. I have not paid attention to it.

              Still searching here for that right PC (CPU / Memory / Motherboard).

              Meanwhile yesterday I put HS3 on one of the XBMC boxes. Well it was a hot spare Aopen digital engine running on a core duo. (Intel(R) Core(TM)2 CPU T5500 @ 1.66GHz, 2 cores and has 2Gb of memory in it running off a little SSD).

              It is running a lite LUbuntu GUI plus XBMC. I have the box sitting over the Wintel box that I shut off yesterday.

              So far I am not hearing the fan running on it sitting on my desk right now.

              Power Managment on Ubuntu
              - Pete

              Auto mator
              Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
              Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
              HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
              HS4 Lite -

              X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

              Comment


              • #52
                With zlatest HS3Pro and the zlatest z-wave plug-in now running on Zbox, it turns out zBox just consumes a steady 7 watts no matter what I'm doing in HS, or even if HS just idles. Even if it never gets better than that, it's still an order of magnitude less than the PC I was running HS2 on, and even so everything in HS3 seems to run much faster than in HS2. The only thing that takes longer than I'd like is switching pages or, say, shifting the display order on something. On that front, I haven't noticed much improvement going from the 2.53Ghz Pentium 4 to the Zbox. So, I do still wonder whether a J2900 board would make a difference in that, or if the browser slowness is caused by something else. It's not massively slow, but neither is it instant. Lately I've been noticing that anything instant delivers much higher satisfaction, just by being instant!

                This time I didn't install a desktop when I installed Debian, on the theory that the graphics might consume more power. Anyhow, for HS purposes, I never used it anyway. At this very moment, with debian and hs3Pro all running together, the total memory being used is <320Mb out of 2Gb.

                Comment


                • #53
                  Yeah the last two HS2 Pentium 3.XX with monster fans on the CPUs were high energy consumers. I did have one capacitor explode, purchased a duplicate board and had the old one repaired. From these went to the Atom D525 / Core Duo machines with the much smaller footprint cases.

                  7 watts is nothing.

                  Yeah it shows you if you need to update when you log into it via SSH. I flip flop and walk away from it with Webmin.
                  Last edited by Pete; December 19th, 2014, 06:05 PM.
                  - Pete

                  Auto mator
                  Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
                  Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
                  HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
                  HS4 Lite -

                  X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    I stopped by Fry's this morning to pick up a couple of the Bay-Trail motherboards discussed above, but I was surprised they didn't carry any of them. Not sure why, as they had a good selection of more expensive ones. Perhaps it's a merchandising technique.

                    It's a pity that idle power isn't commonly listed on spec sheets, the way TDP is. So far the only place I've found it is on random websites, where users happened to have done their own measurements. Very hit or miss.

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Originally posted by NeverDie View Post
                      I stopped by Fry's this morning .
                      Love fry's for all their components, none in FL. Envy how you can JUST stop by fry's in the morning. 0;-)



                      Tom
                      Tom
                      baby steps...starting again with HS3
                      HS3Pro: Z-NET & 80 Z wave Devices,
                      HSTouch: 4 Joggler (Android Kitkat), 2 iPhone, 3 iPads
                      Whole House Audio: 5 SqueezePlay Jogglers w Bose Speakers
                      In The Works: 10 Cameras Geovision, new Adecmo/Envisalink Alarm, Arduinos
                      System: XP on Fanless Mini-ITX w/ SSD

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Yeah, for a few things bricks 'n mortar still has advantages. For instance, if you want to buy a keyboard, Fry's has one side of an entire aisle of keyboards all out on display. Very quickly you can easily try out the ergonomics and decide which you like best. Hard to do that online.

                        I ended up ordering an Asrock Q2900-ITX motherboard/cpu from Newegg, and a picopsu for it from amazon.com (for some reason, much cheaper than Newegg's price). If anyone has interest, I'll post the power figures once I receive and measure it.

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Newegg tends to have really good deals.

                          Fry's is an IT wonderland as I know of no other place that you can see so much IT stuff on the shelves.

                          Curious what wattage of picopsu did you purchase?

                          The attached picture is my favorite little mITX case. I use this one for my automobiles and last DIY miniITX computer boards.

                          The front piece flips down and has two USB ports on it. Kind of made for wireless dongles.

                          My favorite supplies of car pc stuff is this place.

                          Short-circuit dot com There prices are OK.
                          Attached Files
                          - Pete

                          Auto mator
                          Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
                          Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
                          HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
                          HS4 Lite -

                          X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Originally posted by Pete View Post

                            Curious what wattage of picopsu did you purchase?
                            The 80 watt one, on the theory that efficiency goes up in proportion to the percentage of available power utilized. Did I miss something? I have no prior experience with the pico-psu, but it does seem quite popular, especially among silent PC enthusiasts. The 80 watt unit does have only 20 pins instead of the 24 the board requires, but I happen to already have a 20-to-24 pin converter already laying around for ages that I've never used. I was planning to use it to address that issue. Not elegant, I admit, but it saved $20 versus the extra cost of the 150/160 watt pico-psu that has the 24 pins.

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              The 80 watt one, on the theory that efficiency goes up in proportion to the percentage of available power utilized. Did I miss something?
                              No

                              Looking at the Asrock Q2900-ITX this morning...

                              http://www.techspot.com/review/882-i...ock-q2900-itx/
                              - Pete

                              Auto mator
                              Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
                              Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
                              HS4 Pro - V4.0.9.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
                              HS4 Lite -

                              X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                You might want to check out the wide voltage range picopsus as well if you might ever consider hooking it up to batteries (as an efficient UPS, much like security panels do). I have one of those.

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