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Mr_Smartepants

Can you build your own Gen8 equivalent Microserver?

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Mr_Smartepants    16
Mr_Smartepants

If the leaked specs are true, and HP can get this to retail at around $400-500, then they will have a winner on their hands.

Just for my own curiosity, I tried to spec a BYOB that would match the features...I came close, but could not match them all! (dual gigabit NIC's are nearly impossible to find on mini-itx motherboards).

I built the idea around the mini-itx spec for compact size.

 

Here's the "what-if" box I came up with.

 

Case: Lian Li PC-Q25 ($99)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811112339

(5 hot-swap bays on a SATA-III backplane, can hold up to 7x 3.5" drives --or-- 6x 3.5" drives plus 2x 2.5" drives total)

 

Motherboard: ASRock FM2A85X-ITX ($99)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157357

(7 SATA-III ports with USB-3/eSATA ports)

 

CPU: AMD A4-5300 3.4GHz 65W TDP ($55)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113283

 

RAM: G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) ($38)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231193

--OR--

RAM: Corsair Vengance 8GB (2x4GB) ($63)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233379

 

PSU: SeaSonic SSR-360GP ($60)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151117

(I know there are cheaper ones, but I'm a SeaSonic fan!)

 

HDD: Toshiba 500GB 7200RPM ($55)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822149380

 

Cheapest cost: $406

 

Notes:

I went with AMD strictly for cost.  The cheapest Haswell CPU is nearly $200.  No way that would make the budget.

The FM2 board I picked has 7 SATA3 (6Gb/s) ports and a RAID controller supporting 0/1/5/10 which eliminates the need to buy a separate HBA card to add the extra SATA ports needed (though most BYOB followers will want a dedicated RAID-5 card).

I am looking to replace my aging HP EX490 and this just may be the box to do it.

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ikon    420
ikon

Thanks for doing this. It's an interesting exercise.

 

I understand using the AMD CPU for cost reasons, but the only truly fair comparison is to use the same CPU that the G8 is using. It really needs to be as apples-to-apples as possible. Like I posted earlier, I just don't think we can build the kind of value we can get ready-made in the G8. We can build more powerful servers for sure, but not at the same value.

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Joe_Miner    236
Joe_Miner

If the leaked specs are true, and HP can get this to retail at around $400-500, then they will have a winner on their hands.

Just for my own curiosity, I tried to spec a BYOB that would match the features...I came close, but could not match them all! (dual gigabit NIC's are nearly impossible to find on mini-itx motherboards).

I built the idea around the mini-itx spec for compact size.

 

Here's the "what-if" box I came up with.

 

Case: Lian Li PC-Q25 ($99)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811112339

(5 hot-swap bays on a SATA-III backplane, can hold up to 7x 3.5" drives --or-- 6x 3.5" drives plus 2x 2.5" drives total)

 

Motherboard: ASRock FM2A85X-ITX ($99)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157357

(7 SATA-III ports with USB-3/eSATA ports)

 

CPU: AMD A4-5300 3.4GHz 65W TDP ($55)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113283

 

RAM: G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) ($38)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231193

--OR--

RAM: Corsair Vengance 8GB (2x4GB) ($63)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233379

 

PSU: SeaSonic SSR-360GP ($60)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151117

(I know there are cheaper ones, but I'm a SeaSonic fan!)

 

HDD: Toshiba 500GB 7200RPM ($55)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822149380

 

Cheapest cost: $406

 

Notes:

I went with AMD strictly for cost.  The cheapest Haswell CPU is nearly $200.  No way that would make the budget.

The FM2 board I picked has 7 SATA3 (6Gb/s) ports and a RAID controller supporting 0/1/5/10 which eliminates the need to buy a separate HBA card to add the extra SATA ports needed (though most BYOB followers will want a dedicated RAID-5 card).

I am looking to replace my aging HP EX490 and this just may be the box to do it.

 

 

Nice work there!  Thanks!

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Mr_Smartepants    16
Mr_Smartepants

The only truly fair comparison is to use the same CPU that the G8 is using. It really needs to be as apples-to-apples as possible. 

True.

In that scenario, replace the CPU/mobo with the following.

 

Motherboard: Zotac H67ITX-C-E ($125)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813500064&IsVirtualParent=1

 

CPU: Intel G630T 2.3GHz 35W TDP (Sandy Bridge) ($80)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116407

 

Raises the overall cost to $460.

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hmvink    0
hmvink

True.

In that scenario, replace the CPU/mobo with the following.

 

Motherboard: Zotac H67ITX-C-E ($125)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813500064&IsVirtualParent=1

 

CPU: Intel G630T 2.3GHz 35W TDP (Sandy Bridge) ($80)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116407

 

Raises the overall cost to $460.

 

Did you read ANY of the reviews of the Zotac H67ITX-C-E?? Definitely not what you want for stable server environment.

I think that with the proven track record of the 36, 40 and 54 models there simply is not a true competitor for the HP Microserver at the moment. 

 

No, I do not work for HP!  :lol:

Edited by hmvink

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ikon    420
ikon

True.

In that scenario, replace the CPU/mobo with the following.

 

Motherboard: Zotac H67ITX-C-E ($125)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813500064&IsVirtualParent=1

 

CPU: Intel G630T 2.3GHz 35W TDP (Sandy Bridge) ($80)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116407

 

Raises the overall cost to $460.

 

Did you read ANY of the reviews of the Zotac H67ITX-C-E?? Definitely not what you want for stable server environment.

I think that with the proven track record of the 36, 40 and 54 models there simply is not a true competitor for the HP Microserver at the moment. 

 

No, I do not work for HP!  :lol:

 

Hey, not as bad as I feared Mr_Smartepants, but still quite a bit more than an N54L. And hmvink raises a good point: the MicroServers have proven to be really stable & reliable. As always, building your own has a certain amount of uncertainty.

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schoondoggy    588
schoondoggy

 

 

Hey, not as bad as I feared Mr_Smartepants, but still quite a bit more than an N54L. And hmvink raises a good point: the MicroServers have proven to be really stable & reliable. As always, building your own has a certain amount of uncertainty.

I believe he was trying to come up with a MS G8 alternative, not a N54L. The G8 will be more expensive than the N54L.

As a owner of a N36L, N40L and N54L, I agree they are stable and reliable, but they are not very flexible. Try to add non-hp options to them, LSI and Adaptec RAID controllers as examples. 

What kind of options have you added to your Microserver successfully?

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ikon    420
ikon

Yeah. We have to be careful to keep the comparisons even. When I was talking about the N54L I meant the $406 cost, which uses an AMD CPU, so it's closer to the N54L, but it is a faster AMD so the comparison isn't completely even.

 

I really didn't add anything to the N40L, other than an ODD. I don't think not being able add an LSI or Adaptec RAID is a huge detriment. These days, I'm beginning to feel some of the software options are getting to be more appealing than hardware RAID anyway, especially for small boxes like the N54L. Also, with only 1 PCIe slot, it will be difficult to use a G8MS as an HTPC and have hardware RAID, making things like DrivePool and DriveBender even more appealing.

 

Anyway, back to the G8: $460 is not a bad price for a BYO box to compete with the G8 MicroServer. Unfortunately, the Q25 case is quite a bit larger than the G8MS, and you have to give up the convenience of a drive cage.

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Mr_Smartepants    16
Mr_Smartepants

Hey, how did my post become its own thread?  Ghost mods...slippery suckers! :P

 

Did you read ANY of the reviews of the Zotac H67ITX-C-E?? Definitely not what you want for stable server environment.

No, but other reviews about Zotac products in general indicate it's a brand to stay away from.

I only included it to highlight the "apples-to-apples" features of the G8.

 

My intent for the above (first?) post was just to highlight how much of a bargain the Gen8 microserver will be "IF" they can get it to retail for between $400-500.

That's all.

 

Folks who want to BYOB will always BYOB unless an off-the-shelf system will meet their requirements below their cost threshold.

At the time I bought my EX490, the cost of building my own server was far beyond what I paid for the EX490.

And, Yes.  HP makes some damn fine hardware.

 

So I guess this discussion has morphed into: "What would you build to match the specs of the G8 microserver and keep the cost between $400-500?"

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jmwills    283
jmwills

Don't forget to add in the cost of a warranty (RMA) for the entire unit if it all goes to HIAHB.

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