Struggling to Decide whether to repurpose an Old Phenom II system versus a Ryzen 1600x System

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Hello Everyone. I am building my first NAS using Unraid. My use case is to have a place to backup data from my computers, phones (pictures, videos, sms ect), OS snapshots, and to possibly run Home Assistant and other items in either docker or a VM. Originally the idea was to only use extra parts/systems I had on hand. That included extra hard drives but after getting a bunch of reallocated sectors on one of my 2tb drive and the other ones being very old 1Tb, I decided to buy 3 x 4tb HGST MegaScale DC 4000.B HMS5C4040BLE640. According to BackBlaze hard drive stats, was one of the better ones in terms of failure rates. I will run 1 as a parity and 2 as storage. I will then take my other good 2tb, pop it into an external hard drive enclosure and use it to backup as well. Here is my dilemma. I have two extra computers sitting around and I am trying to decide which to use.


1) My old Unix Ubuntu machine which I used to download and stream videos via Plex. I dont use Plex anymore so its been sitting for awhile. The specs are:

I originally planned to use this for Unraid. This is where my original install last night went to. I have been monitoring power consumption and graphing via a smart switch and Hubitat home automation platform. It uses around 115w. At 12c a kilowatt hour, running 24/7, that is $120.888 a year roughly. I could probably undervolt the cpu to save some, but not sure it is worth it.


2) My cabin mini gaming computer. We have a cabin we spent a lot of time at this year due to a house flood and the kids being out of school due to COVID. I decided to use a left over Radeon 1600x and Radeon Vega 56 from my gaming pc that I had sitting around and built a small form factor gaming pc to keep up there. While it was fun building and a good idea in concept, the fact is we dont spend enough time there now that the kids are back in school and the house fixed to justify keeping it there. When I am there now, its all family time. I also have a gaming laptop which does well enough if I need to game up there. After seeing the sky rocket prices of used graphics cards, I have decided to sell the Vega 56. They go for around $500+ on ebay at the moment. I installed a Radeon 3450 (ooollldddd) card I had around for video and to test power consumption. I get around 55w and around $57.816 a year to run. Here are the left over specs:


So the problem is, do I use the Phenom II system which is probably more than enough compute power for my use case, but is old and not nearly as energy efficient? Or do I strip down the 1600x system, use the m.2 drive in an external enclosure for convenient portable storage, and use the 2.5 ssd as a cache drive in the Unraid setup? I dont have any other use for the 1600x system so I would probably sell it and hope to get around $500 or so for that as well. But, the 1600x is much newer and more power efficient. I could even swap out the Ryzen 1600x for a lower power APU and drop the crappy video card as well. But, it feels like the 1600x with 16gb of ram is waayyy more than I need for a simple fiel server and backup solution. 





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I had an old AMD Sempron (with the extra core unlocked) running unraid and it worked great.  The only thing lacking was it did not have AES-NI which made encryption not a strong choice.   I upgraded to a ryzen 2200G - the system was more snappy but overall my transfer rates / parity check rates did not really change much.


I did have a number of ryzen related issues (borking the system under load) that I could never solve - I moved on to an intel system and used my Sempron as a unraid backup box.

My ryzen is now a ubuntu desktop system with no issues.


If you want power efficient, a Intel J3355 cpu that is built into a Asrock motherboard uses less then 10W and has lots of punch for a NAS.


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I decided to go with the Ryzen and use the old case that Phenom II was in since I wanted to use the 3x3.5 hard drive cage I bought. I didnt have another cpu cooler other than the AIO for the Ryzen and I wanted to reuse as many parts as possible. My old Silverstone case doesnt have a radiator mount. I improvised and mounted it on the side and had to modify the case to make it work. Here is my finish build: I also forgot to remove the NVME drive and its on the underside of the board so its now staying lol.

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