Close to ordering, need some final evaluation


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I've been lurking around for a while just absorbing the vast amount of info on this board.  And first things first, I just want to say thank you and Wow! to all the knowledgable and extremely helpful people on this board.  I can actually say it's been a pleasure just reading the well thought out and sincere advice you guys have to offer.


Anyway, I have decided on unRAID for my storage solution going forward (ex-WHS user).  My uses will be for media/document storage, streaming to a few XBMC clients around the house, SABNZB+, Sickbeard, CouchPotato and general storage.  Will be starting out with appox. 8 drives but want the ability to expand up to the 21-22 drive limit. Here's the hardware I'm thinking of, please let me know if I've made any mistakes or if there are better alternatives out there.  Also, since $ is almost always a factor, for what I'm wanting to run, would I benefit enough going with an i3 system for the price increase?

fyi - all prices include shipping


Option 1 - AMD Sempron System

Jetway JHZ03-GT-LF - 82.98

AMD Sempron 140 Sargas - 37.99

Kingston ValueRAM 2GB DDR3 1333 - 22.99

Antec Neo Power 550? - Already Own

Antec 900 - Already Own

Supermico AOC-SASLP-MV8 - 115.98

2 X 3Ware CBL-SFF8087OCF-05MF - 53.36

Total - $313.30


Option 2 - Intel i3 System


Asus P7H55-M LX - 84.99

Intel Core i3-550 Clarkdale - 129.99

Kingston ValueRAM 2GB DDR3 1333 - 22.99

Antec Neo Power 550? - Already Own

Antec 900 - Already Own

Supermico AOC-SASLP-MV8 - 115.98

2 X 3Ware CBL-SFF8087OCF-05M - 53.36

Total - $407.31


Flash Drive - Will be using a Sandisk Cruzer 4GB.  Have to admit, since my last name is Cruzen I just can't use any flash drive other than a Cruzer :D

Hard Drives - Will be a mixture of 2TB WD EARS and EADS, 1.5TB WD and Seagates and a few smaller drives.

As for the power supply, I'm pretty positive that's the model I have.  Will it suffice for a 7-8 drive system?  I know I'll need to change it to a single 12v rail power supply later on, just wondering if I'll be okay for the time being?  I've also got an Antec TruePower Quattro TPQ-1000 I can use if needed.  I just figured that would be overkill.

Also, as for the case, whenever I outgrow the Antec 900 I'm planning to go ahead and get a Norco (4220 or 4224 or whatever new comes out) instead of buying multiple backplanes.  This make sense?

Thanks for any help/advice you can offer.  I'm very much looking forward to joining the unRAID family!


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If you plan to run Sab and the like I would go with a lower power dual core processor.  Either the Intel or AMD build will work though the Intel build will probably use less power when idle.


Neither of those PSU's you list are well suited for unRAID.  The Neo Power I would not use an more than 5 7200RPM drives on (7 Green drives), and the TruePower I would not use any more than 7 7200RPM drives (10 Green drives).


I would probably go with the AMD build with the only substitution being a dual core processor in place of the single core Sempron.

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Thanks for the reply prostuff1, if upgrading the CPU, would the AMD Athlon II X2 255 Regor be sufficient?  Also, when I'm home I'll check out the other power supplies I've got, maybe one of them will work, otherwise will probably just go with the Corsair CMPSU-650TX.


Any other changes needed/advised?


Yes, the Regor would be sufficient.


Let us know what other PSU's you might have and if none of them pass muster then the Corsair you listed above would be a very good choice.

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I've been doing some more looking around Newegg and found the following that looks very interesting:

Biostar TH55 HD

in a combo with the Intel i3 550

for $171.99 with a $5 rebate.


Anyone have any experience with this board.  Looks like it would handle most everything I want and has x16 and x4 PCI-e slots so conceivably I could run two add-on cards.  That and with the money saved I could put that toward a PSU.

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Believe they are the same, just the linked post dropped the "HD" designation.  See Biostar site:

Checked the Biostar link, still look a little bit different, the TH55b says it's got a 5-phase power design and the TH55 says it has a 7-phase.  I'm assuming they're pretty darn close though and that the TH55 would work.  Think I might try and jump on it.

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Thanks for the heads up.  I've never dealt with Provantage at all.  Have you had good luck with them?

I've ordered from Provantage for work and for home, and they are just as competent with orders as Newegg.  Up until you need a return.  Then things can unravel quickly, because for many of their products they require you to request the RMA from the manufacturer if the product is listed with a "Manufacturer's Warranty" instead of "Standard 30 Day's Return".  If that is the case, you could be waiting for up to a month to get your money back.  The process is painfully slow and totally unlike Newegg's fast and simple return process.  For that reason alone, I make sure that if I order from Provantage, the following criteria are met:

  • Item price PLUS shipping is significantly lower than Newegg, or item is only available at Provantage
  • Item is listed with "Standard 30 Day's Return"

Now, I will say I've never had a problem getting approval for an RMA, but just that it isn't as streamlined as it could be.  That said, their products are new, not "newsed", and they are very fast to ship.  And being able to see their stock onhand is a very nice feature I wish Newegg would incorporate.

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Ended up ordering enough to get started last night.  Ended up with the following:

Biostar TH55 HD

Intel i3 550

Kingston ValueRAM 2GB DDR3 1333

With the parts I've got already this should get me up and running (hopefully) and I'll add the add-on card and upgrade the PSU in the next couple of weeks.  Thanks for everyone's help.  If anyone has any advice/questions, let me know.

I'll probably keep this updated with my experience if anyone is interested.

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