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Old 11th Jun 2014, 22:58   #1
Parge
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AMD AM1 build. Quad Core, GCN iGPU and under 25W!

The ECN KBN-I I was using for my NAS and HTPC sadly died. Its the first piece of hardware I've had die since an ill fated GTX 280 way back when.

Needed a replacement of course. I moved away from a 5x hard drive N40L some time ago to save on power and noise, so now I run a single 64gb SSD (OS) and a single 4TB Hitachi HD. Everything is backed up on portable HDs and in the cloud, so only a small risk for me. As well as a NAS, this will be the main living room HTPC, and maybe even a Steam streaming box.

Because we live in a wonderful world, I had a few options to choose from: Intel offer a 2GHZ Quad core BGA Bay Trail JI1900 which has a 10W TDP and costs about 65, but the enthusiast in me just doesn't like that setup, and whats more, it uses laptop RAM, which would have increased the cost further as I don't have any to hand.

Instead I went for the brand new AMD 5350 (39.99) and a Asus AM1I-A (23.99) (Amazon). This gets me a 2Ghz quad core Kabini chip (the 8 core version is used in the PS4/Xbox One), a 128 shader GCN iGPU and a 25W TDP - all for 64. Pretty amazing really.

The motherboard and CPU arrived today, so I've included a sneak peak for you below. Part 2 will be coming Friday when the case arrives.





AMD are going for a diagonal two pronged push pull system with this.


Decent set of ports, USB3.0, HDMI, DVI is all there. What's more the Realtek audio chip is supposed to a pretty solid one.




Cute - but probably pretty useless. However, as AM1 is so new, there aren't really any aftermarket compatible heatsinks







Mounting system is a bit difficult to get installed, but seems pretty solid once you do, and no blood was spilled this time around, so that's a bonus!


See you Friday for Part 2 (Case, PSU, RAM, HDs)
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Last edited by Parge; 11th Jun 2014 at 23:12.
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Old 11th Jun 2014, 23:06   #2
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That is very cool! I really like that.

I just put a little A88X & X4 750k workstation system together today.

I don't know what it is about AMD, but for the 12 years I have been into hardware, I have always had a soft spot for their hardware.
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 00:38   #3
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i'm intrigued as to how this works out - i am planning a build for identical purposes (nas/streaming/steam) and would be interested to know how well it works out for low-fi gaming (indies & last-gen console ports w/controller) and steam game streaming from a more powerful but bigger/noisier machine elsewhere in my house. had the kabini already on my watchlist for this purpose.

looking forward to updates !
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 08:02   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheiken View Post
I just put a little A88X & X4 750k workstation system together today.
I have the same system. Runs like a dream!

@Tom: Hurry up! I want you to test transcoding on the fly with this build (plex).
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 09:20   #5
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I've got the AMD 5350 and Asus AM1I-A in my HTPC setup and for the cost I really can't fault it! I paired mine with 8gb of RAM, pico PSU and a small SSD.

It sits under the TV and can't be heard even when everything else is switched off, I am considering a slightly larger case so I can scrap my additional NAS box, and relocate the drives into to the media PC.

What case are you going to be using?
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 11:33   #6
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I'll be interested in the power numbers from this thing when you get it up and running, I was pretty impressed with my A10-5700 setup which the system idles at 40w which considering my NL40 is about 28w and is woefully underpowered is great, which got me thinking i should rebuild something around that platform and ditch the Microserver, the Am1 should by quite low power.

I was thinking of building nas around something like that though probably look at AM2 based low power chips as the boards have a lot of sata etc, my current A88 has 8x sata ports
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 12:50   #7
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I am interested in this setup for a streaming server/htpc.

Could you give me an idea how high the included cooler is once it's installed on the motherboard?

This will give me an idea how tall a case I will need for the htpc idea.
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 15:02   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheiken View Post
That is very cool! I really like that.

I just put a little A88X & X4 750k workstation system together today.

I don't know what it is about AMD, but for the 12 years I have been into hardware, I have always had a soft spot for their hardware.
Same here. The last two low budget builds I've been have both been AMD - a 760k setup for my housemate (60 for second hand motherboard and CPU). At the moment they just can't be beaten if you want 4 cores nice and cheap!

Quote:
Originally Posted by gosh View Post
i'm intrigued as to how this works out - i am planning a build for identical purposes (nas/streaming/steam) and would be interested to know how well it works out for low-fi gaming (indies & last-gen console ports w/controller) and steam game streaming from a more powerful but bigger/noisier machine elsewhere in my house. had the kabini already on my watchlist for this purpose.

looking forward to updates !
I've got a few indie/old school games I can test out for you. I'll definitely be Steam streaming too, so happy to write up my experiences of that (I should say, I've got ethernet in the walls so if it doesn't work here, it simply doesn't work!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nealieboyee View Post
I have the same system. Runs like a dream!

@Tom: Hurry up! I want you to test transcoding on the fly with this build (plex).
Yep, no worries matey! That's on the testing list too! Plex doesn't support GPU transcoding so this could be a nice test!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 13eightyfour View Post
I've got the AMD 5350 and Asus AM1I-A in my HTPC setup and for the cost I really can't fault it! I paired mine with 8gb of RAM, pico PSU and a small SSD.

It sits under the TV and can't be heard even when everything else is switched off, I am considering a slightly larger case so I can scrap my additional NAS box, and relocate the drives into to the media PC.

What case are you going to be using?
I'll be using a Silverstone Milo ML05! ITX, SFX PSU. Arrived today so I'll be building tomorrow as planned.



Quote:
Originally Posted by sandys View Post
I'll be interested in the power numbers from this thing when you get it up and running, I was pretty impressed with my A10-5700 setup which the system idles at 40w which considering my NL40 is about 28w and is woefully underpowered is great, which got me thinking i should rebuild something around that platform and ditch the Microserver, the Am1 should by quite low power.

I was thinking of building nas around something like that though probably look at AM2 based low power chips as the boards have a lot of sata etc, my current A88 has 8x sata ports
The N40L I had ran way too loud. My mates N54L is basically silent. However, the 5350 will be so much faster than the both, and with my single HD setup (vs 5), I'm hoping for circa 15W idle.

I assume you mean FM2 by the way? So, its worth mentioning; the reason the boards are so cheap is because the AM1 platform includes so much on the chip itself - including the sata controller (see below). However, this only supports up to two SATA ports. Its possible that board makers will add an extra SATA controller on the board itself, but obviously this will add to the price.



Quote:
Originally Posted by sparticate View Post
I am interested in this setup for a streaming server/htpc.

Could you give me an idea how high the included cooler is once it's installed on the motherboard?

This will give me an idea how tall a case I will need for the htpc idea.
I'll measure it for you tomorrow morning and let you know!
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 15:44   #9
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Thanks! I am hoping that I will not need a case more than 100mm high
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 17:53   #10
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hmm, looks like I know what i will be doing with the itx case I have sat about. Good ideas, nice links to cheap wares!
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 18:18   #11
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Very interesting indeed. I wonder how this will compare performance wise to the mATX HTPC I built around an A4-5000?

The gubbins I used are still for sale in the MP but also on eBay, nobody wanted it for peanuts even though it comes with an 8.1 Pro 64-bit license
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Old 12th Jun 2014, 20:07   #12
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Quote:
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Thanks! I am hoping that I will not need a case more than 100mm high
You'll easily get below that, the stock cooler and fan only measures 40mm high, hopefully thinner wider heatsinks will become available in the near future though.
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 09:55   #13
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so a 60mm high case wouldn't cause a issue? I have seen one online that would make a interesting htpc

I am a little worried about ony having about 10mm clearence
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 09:57   #14
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That's fine with regards clearance - if it clears the case then it's fine
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 10:04   #15
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Good morning all! Part 2 is coming up shortly! But in the meantime for sparticates benefit......



45mm!
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 10:20   #16
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Thanks Parge,

Do you think a case that has a height of 65mm cause cooling issues with the overall height of the cooler and motherboard?
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 10:37   #17
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Does the case height include feet, for example my LC19 has a case height of 68mm but about 15mm of that is the A/V style feet on the bottom so inner case space is much less?
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 10:46   #18
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the case I have seen does not have feet, its about 68mm high, I am just concerned about the lack of space creating a lot of noise, which is the oppersite to what I want, is around 20mm clearence at the top of the fan enough do you think?

I am planning to have a htpc that can play bluray without hassle or loads of noise!
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 11:11   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirty View Post
Very interesting indeed. I wonder how this will compare performance wise to the mATX HTPC I built around an A4-5000?

The gubbins I used are still for sale in the MP but also on eBay, nobody wanted it for peanuts even though it comes with an 8.1 Pro 64-bit license
From cross referencing different reviews looks like the Am1 5350 would be a bit faster.

Similar tech though, would just keep it if you cant sell it.
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Old 13th Jun 2014, 11:54   #20
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Looks really good. Only downer I can think of is the lack of a full x16 PCI-E slot for future upgrades.
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