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Budget (including currency): £300-£400, but priority is low ongoing costs, rather than low initial cost

Country: UK (England)

Games, programs or workloads that it will be used for: See below

 

I'm looking to replace my janky 2 raspberry pi setup with a custom built machine, on a budget, reusing some parts from an old desktop. Below I've broken down what software I'm planning to run on this machine, what hardware I already have and what I'm planning to get, and some general further information.

Software

I've been going back and forth about whether to just have a single Linux OS with all my services running natively, or to virtualise, and I've finally come down on virtualising due to all the benefits that come with it.

The various services I want to run on this machine are:

  • Plex

  • NAS (for storing Plex media and CCTV camera footage (from cameras like https://amzn.to/3jcnlv7 and a raspberry pi zero with a camera module)

  • DVD ripping and compressing/encoding automatically whenever a DVD is put into the drive, ejecting on completion for hands-off ripping

  • VPN (so I can access my network from elsewhere, securely)

I'm also considering running:

  • Pi-hole

  • Docker containers of various small apps I'm working on for friends to try out, some of which use small Postgres databases

Hardware

My old parts that I already have are:

I'm currently thinking of getting:

The saved parts list can be found at https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/user/jcreek/saved/msgH23 with the 3300x selected to keep the cost just under £300.

General

My plan is to use the 1050ti for hardware encoding Plex streams, and just use the CPU to encode the MKV files ripped from the DVDs, but this may be the wrong way round, especially given there will never be more than 2 or 3 concurrent streams being watched from Plex by my family, and I have a lot of DVDs to get through. 

 

The 3300x is probably sufficient for my needs, unless I run heavier apps I'm working on on this machine. It's cheaper than the 3600, but also seemingly impossible to buy, so the 3600 may well be the better option, especially as it has on-board graphics. This could then leave the GPU to be purely utilised by the dvd ripping and encoding system, meaning it doesn't have power draw unless that's running (if I've understood correctly).

 

This machine will need to be power efficient to keep costs down, quiet and small so it can live in my bedroom out of the way. Am I going down the right path? Does any of this sound insane? Have I miraculously come up with a reasonable plan, both for the hardware and software? Any recommendations or comments you folks have would be great to hear!

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looks decent enough.. the psu is a bit eh, but the savings from lower power draw compared to the cost of a better PSU is some pretty long return in investment time..

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14 minutes ago, scruffy238 said:

The 3300x is probably sufficient for my needs, unless I run heavier apps I'm working on on this machine. It's cheaper than the 3600, but also seemingly impossible to buy, so the 3600 may well be the better option, especially as it has on-board graphics. This could then leave the GPU to be purely utilised by the dvd ripping and encoding system, meaning it doesn't have power draw unless that's running (if I've understood correctly).

3600 (nor 3300x) does not have on-board graphics. Only AMD APU series have integrated graphics.

Skynet: MacBook Pro Late 2016 Space Gray | i7-6820HQ 2.7 GHz | 16 GB LPDDR3 | Radeon Pro 455 2048 MB | 512 GB NVMe SSD | 15" 2880x1800

HAL9000: Intel i5-9600k | Cryorig M9 | 32 GB Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3200 MHz | Gigabyte Z390I AORUS PRO WIFI | MSI GTX 1080 Ti SeaHawk X | 1 TB Samsung 970 Evo Plus + 1 TB Crucial MX500 + 512 GB Samsung 970 Evo Plus | Corsair TX650M | NZXT H210i | LG 34UM95 34" 3440x1440

Hydrogen server: AMD Ryzen 9 3900x | AMD Wraith Prism | 64 GB Crucial Ballistix 3200MHz DDR4 | Asus Prime X570 Pro | Corsair HX1000 | 256 GB Samsung 850 Evo + 1 TB Crucial MX500 + 4x 3 TB + 2 TB WD Red/Seagate/Toshiba  | Fractal Design Define R5 | unRAID 6.8.3

Carbon server: Fujitsu PRIMERGY RX100 S7p | Xeon E3-1230 v2 | 16 GB DDR3 ECC | 60 GB Corsair SSD & 250 GB Samsung 850 Pro | Intel i340-T4 | ESXi 6.5.1

Big Mac cluster: 2x Raspberry Pi 2 Model B | 1x Raspberry Pi 3 Model B | 2x Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+

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26 minutes ago, scruffy238 said:

My plan is to use the 1050ti for hardware encoding Plex streams, and just use the CPU to encode the MKV files ripped from the DVDs, but this may be the wrong way round, especially given there will never be more than 2 or 3 concurrent streams being watched from Plex by my family, and I have a lot of DVDs to get through. 

 

The 3300x is probably sufficient for my needs, unless I run heavier apps I'm working on on this machine. It's cheaper than the 3600, but also seemingly impossible to buy, so the 3600 may well be the better option, especially as it has on-board graphics. This could then leave the GPU to be purely utilised by the dvd ripping and encoding system, meaning it doesn't have power draw unless that's running (if I've understood correctly).

 

This machine will need to be power efficient to keep costs down, quiet and small so it can live in my bedroom out of the way. Am I going down the right path? Does any of this sound insane? Have I miraculously come up with a reasonable plan, both for the hardware and software? Any recommendations or comments you folks have would be great to hear!

As you're doing more than just Plex, I'd go for more cores over highest clock, so 3600 is my choice. Also, good luck getting a 3300X anyway.

 

Currently hosting Plex in a VM (Proxmox Hypervisor), on 2x Xeon X5675 (3GHz, X58 era). No GPU, and it does ok with 4K>1080p streaming, so with the GPU, you'll be fine.

 

edit: should add, the Plex W10 VM is assigned up to 8 threads max, out of the 24 available.

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3 minutes ago, jj9987 said:

3600 (nor 3300x) does not have on-board graphics. Only AMD APU series have integrated graphics.

He's going to use a 1050Ti...

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10 minutes ago, manikyath said:

looks decent enough.. the psu is a bit eh, but the savings from lower power draw compared to the cost of a better PSU is some pretty long return in investment time..

You'd have to look at a decade of data to see any realized savings by using an 80+ Gold/Platinum, over a Bronze. It's a tiny, tiny, improvement, and not worth the extra cost IMO. By the time you reach a point of saving anything meaningful, you'll very likely have upgraded platform anyway (and in 10 years, PSUs will almost certainly be the 12V only type).

 

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Just now, TehDwonz said:

You'd have to look at a decade of data to see any realized savings by using an 80+ Gold/Platinum, over a Bronze. It's a tiny, tiny, improvement, and not worth the extra cost IMO. By the time you reach a point of saving anything meaningful, you'll very likely have upgraded platform anyway (and in 10 years, PSUs will almost certainly be the 12V only type).

 

most of the savings comes in at the lower % load area, especially in the <20% load (where a home server tends to sit A LOT), but even then still it's a pretty big stretch to make the power supply worth. i've got some numbers on it, but i cant be arsed to math, because i already have the conclusion.

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5 hours ago, scruffy238 said:

single Linux OS with all my services running natively, or to virtualise, and I've finally come down on virtualising due to all the benefits that come with it

So, have you looked into Unraid?

I run a PFSense router using a 4 port gb nic for routing.

An emby server  that uses a dedicated 1650 super for (emby is another plex, but just a tad better 🙂 )

It also runs "Home Assistant" a home automation server

Rather than setting up a NAS box, share your drives via unraid or a VM running on unraid, but really unraid does great at sharing drives.

Look into Unraid if you have not done so yet.

Daily driver (looking to upgrade mobo and cpu spring of 2021)   --- The only time I sort by price from high to low is when I am shopping for CPU's and GPU's (looking for a cheap i7-7700k though)
Mobo: ASRock Z170 Extreme7+  CPU: i7-6700K  @ 4.2MHz  Cooling: Corsair H115i Hydro  Memory: TridentZ 32GB @ 3600MHz  GPU: EVGA 2070 FTW3 ULTRA+ (OC'd 50/300)  
PSU: EVGA NEX750B   Storage: (1)950 PRO 512GB (2)ADATA SU800 1TB  Keyboard: Logitech G910  Mouse: Logitech G502   Headset: Logitech G930 headset   UPS: APC XS 1300

Unraid box providing network routing, home automation services, and media services ( I love unraid!)

USB Key: SanDisk 16GB Ultra Fit  Mobo: Intel DX79SR Extreme+  CPU: i7-3820  Memory: 16Gb Kingston HyperX Predator  Storage: (cache)480gb Micron SSD (1)8TB HDD (1) 4TB HDD  
GPU: MSI GTX 1650 4GT LP OC (passed through to Emby)  NIC: Intel I350-T4 4-port Gb (passed through to PFSense)  UPS: APC PRO 1000
Docker Containers: Emby and Home-Assistant-Core  Virtual machines: PFsense ( I love PFSense!)

Family machines
Mobo: Asus Prime H310M-E  CPU: Intel Core i3-9100F  Cooling: Deepcool Gammaxx 400  Memory: Teamgroup Elite Plus DDR4 16GB  Storage: Silicon Power 1TB NVMe M.2  
GPU: Asus GTX 1660 Super 6GB or EVGA 1070 FTW 8GB  PSU: Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+  UPS: APC XS 1300


As well as a number of other machines, a ton of parts, miles of cables, and who knows what else!
Private message me for quicker assistance. I also build and ship custom machines at a really fair price.

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@cr8tor I did have a quick look at it, but a lot of people seemed to be moving to proxmox from unraid. I'll take a look at it, it might be worth setting up unraid as a VM on proxmox, but I suspect not. 

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I dont think unraid would work as a vm any more than proxmox would work as a vm in unraid. 

I think its worth looking into for you. But its a bit off topic from what you originally asked for in regards to hardware so ill leave it be. 🙂

Daily driver (looking to upgrade mobo and cpu spring of 2021)   --- The only time I sort by price from high to low is when I am shopping for CPU's and GPU's (looking for a cheap i7-7700k though)
Mobo: ASRock Z170 Extreme7+  CPU: i7-6700K  @ 4.2MHz  Cooling: Corsair H115i Hydro  Memory: TridentZ 32GB @ 3600MHz  GPU: EVGA 2070 FTW3 ULTRA+ (OC'd 50/300)  
PSU: EVGA NEX750B   Storage: (1)950 PRO 512GB (2)ADATA SU800 1TB  Keyboard: Logitech G910  Mouse: Logitech G502   Headset: Logitech G930 headset   UPS: APC XS 1300

Unraid box providing network routing, home automation services, and media services ( I love unraid!)

USB Key: SanDisk 16GB Ultra Fit  Mobo: Intel DX79SR Extreme+  CPU: i7-3820  Memory: 16Gb Kingston HyperX Predator  Storage: (cache)480gb Micron SSD (1)8TB HDD (1) 4TB HDD  
GPU: MSI GTX 1650 4GT LP OC (passed through to Emby)  NIC: Intel I350-T4 4-port Gb (passed through to PFSense)  UPS: APC PRO 1000
Docker Containers: Emby and Home-Assistant-Core  Virtual machines: PFsense ( I love PFSense!)

Family machines
Mobo: Asus Prime H310M-E  CPU: Intel Core i3-9100F  Cooling: Deepcool Gammaxx 400  Memory: Teamgroup Elite Plus DDR4 16GB  Storage: Silicon Power 1TB NVMe M.2  
GPU: Asus GTX 1660 Super 6GB or EVGA 1070 FTW 8GB  PSU: Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+  UPS: APC XS 1300


As well as a number of other machines, a ton of parts, miles of cables, and who knows what else!
Private message me for quicker assistance. I also build and ship custom machines at a really fair price.

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@scruffy238

Cool, your mention of a plex server is what really made me think unraid.

I believe both plex and emby have native unraid support.

 

Good luck and have fun regardless of what you go with.

Daily driver (looking to upgrade mobo and cpu spring of 2021)   --- The only time I sort by price from high to low is when I am shopping for CPU's and GPU's (looking for a cheap i7-7700k though)
Mobo: ASRock Z170 Extreme7+  CPU: i7-6700K  @ 4.2MHz  Cooling: Corsair H115i Hydro  Memory: TridentZ 32GB @ 3600MHz  GPU: EVGA 2070 FTW3 ULTRA+ (OC'd 50/300)  
PSU: EVGA NEX750B   Storage: (1)950 PRO 512GB (2)ADATA SU800 1TB  Keyboard: Logitech G910  Mouse: Logitech G502   Headset: Logitech G930 headset   UPS: APC XS 1300

Unraid box providing network routing, home automation services, and media services ( I love unraid!)

USB Key: SanDisk 16GB Ultra Fit  Mobo: Intel DX79SR Extreme+  CPU: i7-3820  Memory: 16Gb Kingston HyperX Predator  Storage: (cache)480gb Micron SSD (1)8TB HDD (1) 4TB HDD  
GPU: MSI GTX 1650 4GT LP OC (passed through to Emby)  NIC: Intel I350-T4 4-port Gb (passed through to PFSense)  UPS: APC PRO 1000
Docker Containers: Emby and Home-Assistant-Core  Virtual machines: PFsense ( I love PFSense!)

Family machines
Mobo: Asus Prime H310M-E  CPU: Intel Core i3-9100F  Cooling: Deepcool Gammaxx 400  Memory: Teamgroup Elite Plus DDR4 16GB  Storage: Silicon Power 1TB NVMe M.2  
GPU: Asus GTX 1660 Super 6GB or EVGA 1070 FTW 8GB  PSU: Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+  UPS: APC XS 1300


As well as a number of other machines, a ton of parts, miles of cables, and who knows what else!
Private message me for quicker assistance. I also build and ship custom machines at a really fair price.

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