Hi all, building a fanless workstation

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ned_
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2020 7:14 am

Hi all, building a fanless workstation

Post by ned_ » Tue Nov 03, 2020 7:31 am

... for my vehicle.

Hi to all. I have been working from home since March 2019, and It occurred to me, that I could kit my campervan out, and travel around and work from that.

So I have been glued to this topidc for a week now, trying to absorb as much info as possible.

I think its possible for a system to run at 8 - 12 watts and still be a capable system? Thats really what im after.


What I have so far:

120AH LifePo4 battery

100 watt solar panel

A 24" screen that draws 1.5 amps at 12V

A combined 50 amp DC to DC charger / Mppt charger for the solar panel (Renogy dcc50s)

Hoping for a Silent Computer that will draw around 1 or 2 amps


Cheers and thanks for reading,
ned.

CA_Steve
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Posts: 7492
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: Hi all, building a fanless workstation

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Nov 03, 2020 1:27 pm

Welcome to SPCR.

What applications are you looking to run on this PC? If it's fairly lightweight, then it's possible. I had a Pentium-class dual core barebones MSI Cubi I built out 5 years ago. It idled at 7-9W and played 1080p video's using 10-12W.

As 5 years have passed, there should be a decent performance bump at the lower end of things. However, you'll probably want to go with a small form factor PC that has DC-in rather than a desktop build as it'll have higher PSU efficiency. Maybe go with an Intel NUC and put it in a fanless case. Or...there should be some AMD Ryzen 4xxxU-based mini-PCs on the market now. Can be very efficient CPUs if not run at the highest freq available. The Asus (PN50) and others have some coming out. Not sure what the noise profile is...or whether you can adapt to a fanless case..yet.

Ok, here's a review of the Ryzen 5 4500U version of the Asus PN50. Uses a fair bit of power due to the 6-cores (48W), so out of your league.

Here's a review of the i3-10110 based (2 core 4 threads) NUC. 8 W idle, 12W 4k video, 33W with CPU stress test. Note that this CPU can be set for 15W or 25W TDP as the OEM desires...not sure if you can set it for 15W with 1 button in BIOS..but, perhaps you can restrict the clock/ boost clock.

Anandtech did a review of the Akasa fanless case with the NUC8i5BEK (Core i5-based Bean Canyon NUC). A 28W CPU that pulled 75W from the wall...obviously more than what you can have...but useful as a comparison for thermals. Akasa's been making NUC cases for a while.

ned_
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2020 7:14 am

Re: Hi all, building a fanless workstation

Post by ned_ » Wed Nov 04, 2020 3:21 am

Thanks for the reply Steve! And for the info.

I am in work right now, but will read back through your post again, more thoroughly tonight.

kind regards,
ned.

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