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Author Topic: New weather PC needed  (Read 1485 times)

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Offline broadstairs

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New weather PC needed
« on: January 02, 2017, 11:25:49 AM »
My laptop which currently runs WD/WXSim and my Router Monitor needs to be replaced as it is getting a tad flaky. I found a Gigabyte Brix GB-BXBT-1900 2GHz here in the UK as barebones for £100 which has a J1900 Celeron processor in it, has VGA/HDMI/USB2x2/USB3x1/Gigabit Lan/B/G/N Wifi/Bluetooth and my 300GB 2.5in HDD will fit. Hopefully it will run W7 as my current laptop.

I think it should be powerful enough to run WD/WXSim + Router Monitor. Anyone here using anything similar?

Stuart

Offline larryf

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2017, 01:44:54 PM »
That's a powerful mini box, certainly capable of Win7/WD and anything else you use on it. Gigabyte motherboards use solid caps, I've never had one go bad. Newegg has that for US $100, not sure how much shipping would cost to you.

I have the mini-ITX version of your system running Pfsense, it only pulls 9 Watts! Makes a big difference when you have a box running 24X7 and your power bills are out of sight.

For WD, I use a socket AM1 motherboard, another CPU/motherboard combo that is low power and very inexpensive. I wouldn't use either of these boxes for intense gaming, but they are more than enough for day to day use.

Hope that helps,
Larry

Offline niko

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2017, 02:41:07 PM »
Passmark's  CPU list is pretty reliable in my experience. Compare your current CPU with the J1900 to get an idea of relative performance - it looks good to me. (Use Ctrl F to search, it works better than the page search box.)

Offline broadstairs

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2017, 03:27:23 PM »
My current laptop is well over powered as its an i5-480M cpu, hardly breaks wind - I mean sweat  #-o running WD and WXSim. I think the issue with it sounds like the cpu fan so if I can replace that I'd recycle it and keep as a spare. I only used it because it was sitting in a cupboard doing nothing when my old desktop started creaking. The more I've researched I think Brix will do fine. The I5 gives 2426 and the J1900 gives 1875 in Passmark. I think I'll order one today, should have it by Thursday I hope.

Stuart

Offline niko

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2017, 04:04:52 PM »
 :lol:

Offline broadstairs

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2017, 08:07:57 AM »
Received the device on Thursday. Not impressed right now. I ordered a 4gb so-dimm of the correct type along with the box, fitted it and added my 2.5in hdd. Then tried to boot but both VGA and HDMI output are not working, know it's not the TV (HDMI) or monitor (VGA) as they both work OK using the relevant input.

Reading some comments on the net it seems that these devices are picky about memory as others have seen this issue. I will try today to see if my local shop has another so-dimm of the correct specs and see if that fixes it. If not it will be going back for a replacement.

Stuart

Update: Just discovered my laptop uses similar 1.35v memory so borrowed it and hey presto it works, well at least I see output, so it seems either I have a bad memory module or it is not exactly the correct type despite what it says on the label.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2017, 10:15:00 AM by broadstairs »

Offline broadstairs

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2017, 09:37:33 PM »
Well finally got it working now with a new memory module. It booted fine off the hdd from the laptop and seems to be running OK. Certainly seems to have more than enough CPU power. Time will tell how well it behaves. Certainly has a small footprint as its about 4 inches square and about 2.5 inches deep. If my monitor had a VESA mount on the back I'd be tempted to mount it on there but for now it is on a shelf. It is accessed via a KVM switch. All I need to do now is to re-validate W7 but that's for tomorrow now.

Stuart

Offline browgars

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2018, 08:48:49 AM »
Now some time has passed would you recommend the Gigabyte Brix for a 24/7 WD machine? I've been using old Reconditioned SFF Dell Desktops but the Power Supplies are starting to fail and they aren't very economical on power etc. Any tips on what to use gratefully received. Thanks :-)

Offline broadstairs

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2018, 06:16:23 PM »
Well it's still running fine. Runs like a train on W7  with no updates and the odd manual reboot really as belt & braces.

Stuart
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 01:18:33 PM by broadstairs »

Offline bitsostring

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2018, 07:25:25 PM »
would you recommend the Gigabyte Brix for a 24/7 WD machine?


Yes. I've had one (same model as broadstairs) running 24/7 since February this year and I've had no problems with the machine. (It's a different story with Win 10 updates, though, but you learn how to handle them!)


I fitted an SSD so it's completely silent: a plus for me as the WMR200 console (with USB connection) is in the living room.
It's meant to be fun. . .

Online Brientim

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2018, 07:34:53 PM »
I have a Shuttle XPC there are newer model i.e DS77U Celeron 24/7 certified.

Offline browgars

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2018, 06:14:35 PM »
Thanks chaps - I think Iíll investigate these beasts. Iíve ditched Win10 and reverted back to W7. Despite much fiddling with settings Win10 did things whilst I was away. Very irritating 🤓

Offline niko

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2018, 09:28:34 PM »
For anyone interested in an inexpensive WX PC I've seen that Intel D525MW motherboards are now available for very low prices on ebay*. That's a fanless dual core/4 thread 1.8 GHz Atom board with 2 real serial ports that runs Win7 or Linux very happily. The mini-ITX format means it will fit any old ATX case.

* I recently bought a semi-complete D525MW PC for $40, mobo, case (cover missing), hdd, psu.

Offline FPGAgeek

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2018, 08:18:13 AM »
For anyone interested in an inexpensive WX PC I've seen that Intel D525MW motherboards are now available for very low prices on ebay*. That's a fanless dual core/4 thread 1.8 GHz Atom board with 2 real serial ports that runs Win7 or Linux very happily.

Yeah I would second that.
I have been running the slightly older D510MO since 2010 and it has been rock solid and is passively cooled which is great for a 24+7 PC plus having the native serial ports has attached my Davis VP2 and CurrentCost meter nicely. Make sure you get the D525MW version which has a faster CPU clock and slightly faster memory interface (DDR3, previously DDR2 depending on configuration).

The only point I would add is that the power consumption for this board is not up to current technology i.e. my setup (D510MO + 2.5" SSD + 2x2GB RAM) consumes just over 20Watts from the wall and that uses a medical grade efficient AC-DC PSU. However as Niko said, if you can pick this setup cheap then the capital expenditure may probably outweigh the power saving achieved with a modern board and processor configuration depending on the operational life required.

Offline iccb

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Re: New weather PC needed
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2018, 11:48:44 AM »
You can also look up Intel NUC-units, they are very small and uses not much energy. I think that newest models donít run windows 7, bur older versions will run.

 

cumulus