Author Topic: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...  (Read 3368 times)

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Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #45 on: March 13, 2018, 07:58:39 am »
Tried all i can find and still nothing...

However found a cheap fanless pc (very like an ava rip-n-play without optical drive) its case is actually solid aluminium (used to have a rip and play and it looks like its formed out a solid lump of aluminium).  No fans, no vents, case is heatsync and even with mechanical hdd its virtually silent. 4gb ram but can take a lot more.

It uses a intel 630 cpu and can cope with loads of ram.  Has HDMI out and even has the wee htpc header that a pulse 8 cec can plug straight on to.  From what i can see ubuntu 16.04 fully supported with intel drivers for cpu/gpu as well.  Also looks like can even handle 4k at 60Hz so seems a good choice.

So considering grabbing it as it looks like a bit of high end hi-fi and cinema equipment.  Will find another use for the old thin client :)

John

« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 08:17:00 am by mr-mac »

Offline Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec)

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #46 on: March 14, 2018, 02:02:59 am »
Nice .. good luck, and please let us know how you get on. It's always helpful to know which hardware works well for a given task.
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Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #47 on: March 14, 2018, 05:42:00 pm »
Looks like it should work well as its an intel motherboard with the pentium g620 and intel provide drivers that work with ubuntu 16.

Will take some pics inside and out and post info once all set up and working. 

John

Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #48 on: March 14, 2018, 07:44:24 pm »
Was checking spec and motherboard has 4x pcie, full mini pcie and half mini pcie..
So the 128gb kingfast ssd out of thin client is going in the full mini pci-e for OS drive duties.


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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #49 on: April 07, 2018, 09:18:18 am »
Playing with new machine...

It's a tranquil solid aluminium fanless case with intel dh61ag inside - was a bespoke design for business client with whole case as heatsync and higher thd handling than the atom media ones they sell under their brand or ava.

Anyway Ubuntu and kodi installed. 

Couldn't find an internal cec adapter for dh61ag (no longer made) but took nuc one and wired on a usb header and using a laptop IDE ribbon cable cut down to 4 pin for 2mm pitch htpc header and hooking it up I managed to use the newer NUC adapter.

Upgraded the firmware and thought i goosed machine... Nope it just reverted to needing a power button duh.  So added a wire to fake one to fix setting in bios.

Kodi installed and couldn't initialise cec.  Ah ffs!!!! Thought maybe adapter incompatible.  Eventually found to add user to group dialup and its working.

Now to check if i need intel grfx driver as desktop does funny graphical things sometimes.

Looking good though and using Ubuntu 16.04

Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #50 on: April 07, 2018, 10:42:32 am »
eventually found download of intel graphics tool and updated them so that's all up to date and looking good.

All looking good so far.  Audio over HDMI, hdmi cec working and so on.




Offline Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec)

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #51 on: April 07, 2018, 11:51:42 am »
Terrific new, thanks for the update :)

Any chance you can post the make and model ?
(I might be interested in trying something similar with Peppermint)
« Last Edit: April 07, 2018, 11:53:42 am by Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec) »
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Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #52 on: April 07, 2018, 04:40:55 pm »
As they were bespoke for a company you can't buy em but if you search tranquil pc on eBay you'll see them at moment.  Lad has a few for sale (16 when i bought mine and he took £80).

It's an intel dh61ag.

Really like the solid alu cases as no noise from fans and tbh be lucky if you even hear hdd at all.  Tranquil also did a nice case for intel NUC as well which come up on eBay from time to time.

The cec adapter was a pulse eight nuc internal one s/h but had to hack loom to make it work ;)

Motherboard is a 1155 cpu and will take up 16gb of dd3 laptop mem over two slots (4gb in ones i got).  It can also handle a lower power i7 up to about 40 watt so if feel a need for improvement there is a 60watt one board will handle and I'll underclock the slow cpu speed a little ;)
« Last Edit: April 07, 2018, 06:45:21 pm by mr-mac »

Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #53 on: April 07, 2018, 06:40:26 pm »
Was gonna use a cheaper similar unit bit saw these and need to build a wee media box for young lasses room now too.

Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #54 on: April 07, 2018, 07:15:03 pm »
Was one of these.  https://m.ebay.co.uk/itm/Tranquil-PC-Mini-ITX-Media-Server-HTPC-with-4GB-RAM-Pentium-G630T-2-3GHz-/162626018536?txnId=1681213842006

Luckily my thin client had the HP 120w psu with same 19v thin centre pin psu.

Great wee unit for below telly due to fanless and nice aluminium case.

Offline Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec)

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #55 on: April 09, 2018, 07:23:29 pm »
Thanks mr-mac :)

It worries me that they don't come with a power brick, which is gonna add another £20 is to the price .. which is then pushing them towards the price range of one of these:-
https://www.amazon.co.uk/BeeBox-J3160-BB-ASR-J3160-SATA-Motherboard/dp/B01IQDW5Y6

which are brilliant for video, with the quad core CPU having hardware decoding .. yet a MUCH lower power draw.

Yes they have a fan, but you never hear it (except at boot).

I love these Beebox's .. at least the j3160 ones I've tried :)



Or maybe
https://www.ebuyer.com/824648-gigabyte-brix-gb-bpce-3350c-barebone-gb-bpce-3350c
or
https://www.ebuyer.com/711030-gigabyte-brix-mini-pc-intel-celeron-j1900-barebone-gb-bxbt-1900
or
https://www.ebuyer.com/654664-gigabyte-brix-mini-pc-intel-celeron-n2807-barebone-gb-bxbt-2807

Though you do have to get memory for all of these (the Beebox has dual channel memory slots, the Brix are single channel).
« Last Edit: April 09, 2018, 08:09:31 pm by Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec) »
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Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #56 on: April 10, 2018, 03:38:48 pm »
Absolutely agree.

£80 is grand if have a psu kicking about but maybe too steep if not.  The cases are a work of art.  Actually cut from a solid lump of aluminium.  However they have made a number of different tranquil pc units with similar aluminium cases and biding time they do come up on eBay and if a bid auction or offers accepted can be had cheap.  The only advantage to these over a cheaper case is you can use a 2.5" sata drive and you'd be hard pushed to hear it in a quiet room.

One of those if you fancy idea but no time scale keep eyes peeled and could land something a bit stunning that wouldn't look out of place on a proper hi-fi separates rack.

Offline Mark Greaves (PCNetSpec)

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #57 on: April 10, 2018, 05:44:42 pm »
I must say I do like the look of the single billet aluminium case though :) .. does the case touch the CPU and become the heatsink ?

The Beeboxes are aluminium too (though cast) but painted black.
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Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #58 on: April 10, 2018, 07:05:13 pm »
It Has a square coming down from top under fins that touches cpu and another for the motherboard chip as well (woulda called it north bridge but reckon it probs does everything in a mini Itx).

As i was installing stuff anyway i changed paste to some mx5 i had kicking about.  And you can't see it but there is an air gap in case between area for motherboard and 2.5" hdd which was designed to break up cpu/chipset heat from making hdd too warm (if you install one).

Tranquil said it was designed for the 35w cpu fitted and tbh temps i am seeing so far say to me about 40watt would be safe.  If i feel later , as its likely to be my main pc under telly for all things media and a few other tasks.  I may fit the, think it was 60/65ish watt, i7 (fastest board will support and slightly underclock the slow speed to get it near 40w bit keep the turbo speed high for the one core that can go faster.  And like i say board will support 16gb ram as well.

The half width mini pcie and full width mini pcie are useable but due to case being the heatsync and pretty much no gaps, grills or other openings, and space the 4x pcie wouldn't be useable.

If you want i can take some internal photos etc so you can see exactly what it looks like.  Plan to use an old tranquil/ava server (very low power, about 35-40w with 5 green 3.5" drives in beside router to store my media i think.  Also my kingfast ssd doesn't like the intel board or vice versa so currently has hdd in it so will probs get an sata adapter for ssd and pop it where hdd is.  Can't decide if want wi-fi/bluetooth but a modern intel card would fit and a small drill hole on thinner bit of rear would easy allow antenna mounting.   

Offline mr-mac

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Re: old thin client as Htpc - Which linux...
« Reply #59 on: April 10, 2018, 07:09:04 pm »
The intel board is dual channel ddr3 (laptop style) with 2x 2gb fitted already (probs enough for a media machine)

 


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