$800 TrueNAS DIY Build CompetitionJun 07, 2021
Hi everyone, Brian Beeler from Storage Review, I'm flying solo for the moment because I'm about to reveal some very important boxes here and see what's inside. This is my
buildfor a challenge we are working on. Kevin, the intern, and the one I'm going to talk to. head to head to see who can
buildthe best true nas system on a budget of 800 now that doesn't take into account storage, we have an ace up our sleeve for that, we have a partner that will help us There we will see in a moment, but We each had the same budget and we are doing it in similar but different ways.
You can see I have a lot of components here that we'll go through and take a look at. uh in my design decisions uh Kevin has his own which we'll go to next and then show the intern all I've been told is that it smells a little like cat urine so I don't know what that is that. means why it happened huh, but we've all had to make certain compromises, at least that's what I think to reach our sand storage on a budget of 800, so I'm going to go into my pile and explain to you what I selected. and why and to be fair, I asked for feedback and opinions from some of the experts that I know that use trunas a lot on what would work well, what components would work well with this um and I went to see some friends online to see if you were going to go .
To do this, what would you do? And the comments were pretty universal. Let's go with a build that has a good amount of storage because it will meet the capacity needs of most small businesses or home labs or whatever, but leave a little room for some kick in there and that's what I've done , so I'm starting with the fractal node. This was a strong recommendation from my friend Blaze in Canada. A fractal has been in this game for a long time and is definitely a favorite among enthusiasts, now this guy was like 80 bucks, so, you know, you could say it's a little more than maybe I wanted spend on a case, believe me, I considered going for just a PC chassis, which would have saved me a lot of money. but the way I'm moving I think style points count for something, Vince will let you edit this match so I have to say this thing is pretty well packaged and feels good last time I bought a cabinet.
In fact, about 25 years ago, the last time I built a PC of any kind was a long time ago, so this is going to be quite an adventure for me and it's kind of fun because you might ask, "Okay, well, Brian, yeah You're not used to it." to build these systems, why would you do this? My answer is that I know Kevin will take the lazy way out. I can now read his mind and know what he is going to do before he does it. While Brian and the intern are gone. more creative approach i took the approach that works so i know i can beat it i think performance wise it's okay so here's our enclosure this is pretty cool oh man it's got big fans which is good three in total, so this.
It's going to be our base, I'm very excited about that, okay, now what happens inside this little chassis. I've made another interesting design decision and I got it from Newegg I think so let's take a look so this was another one. recommendation uh to help me from a simplicity standpoint and I'm sure you could buy a board, you could buy a CPU, you could get all the goo and the heatsink and all that, all of that is great. I wanted to keep it simple, but I also wanted to lean a little bit towards enterprise, so I bought this super micro board.
It is now an AMD board and comes with an integrated ship. There are a lot of cables here. I don't know what to do with them. We will have to do it. I found that out later. I'm very excited about this board and we have eight cores and eight threads in this build so I went with the top model. They make cheaper versions of this, but I think this will be the answer. My performance needs in terms of being able to beat Kevin, so obviously we have a CPU here, we have four dimming slots which is great and most importantly we have a pcie slot, now I'm going to need that.
For networking, this guy has four ports built in, but they're gig-only, so it's not going to get the job done. It has a small administration port. It has the A-speed chip here for administration and one of my secrets. weapons is that it has an nvme m.2 slot and that's what I'm hoping will save my skin when it comes to performance. I know, you know, it would be striking to go with a fully SSD version. I considered that. It's a little more my pace, but I also wanted to meet capacity needs. I have another box of Supermicro.
I don't remember which one it is, so we'll come back to that. We have one of my first commitments. So RAM is expensive and the first one I ordered came from China. I didn't realize it when I bought it on eBay. That's something you have to be careful about: when will it show up? It was going to be a month and a half to show up so I canceled when I found this guy and I think this is going to be really perfect for my needs. I wanted to get 16 gigs so we had enough room for the veracity to really spread. a minimum of eight to make it work well, so I wanted to get 16 to make it work really well and these are ecc faders that should look like oh, these are high necks.
I had even forgotten what I bought them from. an hp system apparently they have a little hp sticker on there, uh, but I have two of these guys, eight, eight gigabit, eight gigabyte dimm for a total of 16, so we should be in good shape, another compromise I had to make . The budget saving terms were the nick now I know that Kevin has a propensity to go after the high speed Knicks. I probably don't think I can afford a 100 gig nick in this setup, so while everyone else could be taking advantage of the 10 gigs I have. a 100k card because I'm crazy, the intern probably doesn't know enough, he probably used gigabit on board and thinks it's good enough, but it's not.
I decided to buy one, I think it's a Chelsea. Oh, I'm not sure of the model number, but it's dual. sfp plus, but I had to do better, so I went on another excursion to eBay which ended. Oh okay, eBay is really great when you want to save money. I bought this guy for a 10 gig card for 22 I think, but as soon as I took it out. You shouldn't hear the noise uh this is what I get for saving money buying a used nick at an ebit oh there are pieces falling everywhere um the little brackets for the heat sink have broken during shipping um this one still has it three and it's pretty good, there are more pieces falling off, this one has one or maybe half of one, so we're going to have to design a solution to keep this heatsink on if we want our 10 gig nick to work, so You know, I guess.
I could return it and wait a couple more weeks, but we don't have time to learn the lesson. I guess this is just what we deal with. Let's go to the super micro box. I remember buying. Oh right, okay, so I bought this cable at the supermarket. micro, it was a five dollar cable, I actually didn't know super micro sold parts directly, I know I learned my lesson now, they had the best price on this, it was a little five dollar guy, um, I'm going to be honest, no I know. What is it or why did I need it?
I was reading that I need it, so I have it. I think it has something to do with the motherboard power, but you know, this is what happens when you don't build PCs. for a while you get a little rusty, the last thing I did was another compromise I made with the power supply. I found one on pnh, it's refurbished or used or lightly used and returned or something double boxed so at least they took care of it but it saved me a lot of money. I bought this for $45 and we'll put up the other parts with all the build components, prices and sources so you can check it out, but I thought the power supply is one of those things.
It's either going to work or it's not and now I wanted to try to spice up the power supply a little bit. 500 watt smart thermal lake. It has this nest of rat wires. Ah, now I see this little guy connecting to this guy. to bring power to the motherboard. I knew I needed it. I just didn't know what I was doing. Initially I wanted to amp up the game a bit. Thermal Lake makes an RGB version of this. I wouldn't have made it go faster, but it would have gotten a couple more style points, so I'll find someone to put this together for me and we'll move on to Kevin's build and see what he's doing, hey guys, for this. doi nas build uh, while brian and the intern took a more creative approach, I took the approach that works, uh, it's an hp microserver, it's the gen10 plus and it has offered fantastic compatibility between many different operating systems, vmware hyper-v ,uh. trunas and it's one that we've known and loved for a while so I thought why not and with this 800 budget that we're working with it actually gets really good so this platform I think with shipping came, it came to us at around 600 which left a little extra money for a few things so while everyone else could take advantage of 10 gigs, I have a 100k card, it should be a pretty fun build so I went with the microserver with the xeon processor and this.
I think it has eight gigabytes of memory, so depending on my total build cost, I think I have a little left over to get another gulp unit, but I thought this one is smaller. I'm one or three years old. warranty None of the other guys have warranties that would provide a full warranty solution other than I think those guys would have to self fulfill their warranty, process or mail in parts to fix anything if mine breaks I contact uh hp and send a replacement part if needed, so as many of you may remember, the microservers include an external power supply, so that's a subtle difference in this build versus the one Brian and the in-house have, as the yours will have internal. power supplies and it may be a little neater, but overall nothing will come close to the size of this and while it's pretty good on this platform, it includes integrated video, lots of USB connectivity, four gigabyte ports and then a management slot idle, if you want to add that it's pretty cheap and then a single PCI card slot for a half height card that will fit my 100 card perfectly, you should probably grab the screwdriver because whoever puts these screws in first to use the hammer Thor with a Phillips screwdriver, you've got them pretty tight, I'll be back in a moment, okay, so I'm back with an impact screwdriver and a variety of tools to open this thing one way or another, it's opening today, so When you start looking at the different solutions offered in this price range, it actually becomes quite difficult to purchase and find a very low cost multi-bay rig, especially when you want to find one that has the network to support your operating system. um and it can handle a number of hard drives, the microserver, as you all remember, offers four or four three and a half inch bays and to boot this guy, what I'm going to do is take advantage of the integrated system. uh usb port uh that's inside the drive uh for uh for my boot drive although it may not be completely preferred for a boot solution uh I'm going to use a nice high quality Sandisk USB 3 flash drive and my hope is the uh I'm worried about going over if you're using a very low end custom drive I would have some issues but I hope I've mitigated that with a quality drive uh and then my only setup really comes down to getting this card where these cards are They will ship with a full height adapter so all I have to do is change it to the half height adapter and it will support 100 gigs on my four bay nas and you could say why and my answer is because I'm crazy and also It's cheap, it gives me a cable to connect, I have to manage the network for everyone's na builds and this gives me the least amount of things to worry about getting connected and the other guys where they are.
It could reach a maximum of two ports of 10 gigabytes each. I mean, they could have walked up and tried to steal a 25 gig card from the lab because who's going to notice that one of the many is missing, but even there I'll be? able to max out everything my CPU supports before running out of steam so here I swapped out the full height stand for a half height stand and once the stand is in place I can slide the motherboard out of this hp microserver which , by the way, it's this platform, the only problem we really had is that it doesn't support or natively offer a two and a half inch base, well, I mean, yeah, you could use a three and a half inch to a of four. and a half inch or three and a half inches to a two and a half inch adapter to put an SSD in this um, but I mean that part you can fix, but if they went with a native two form factorinch and a half, You can probably fit more drives, maybe fit into six or eight individual sets of bays and it gets even cooler to handle larger amounts of IO or just take advantage of cheap dense flash, but you can't, you can't ask the world. of a microserver that you can get down to around 500 with warranty shipped, uh, for sale, so you have a little bit of wiggle room, so this, while everyone else may have a weird feeling coming out of your power supply, what are the chances of that power? supply explodes or dust flies or just goes through a lot of assembly fun, mine I make two screws and have full access to the inside of this server and the benefit of this is that installing the pci card removes the little slot blank card and within minutes I'm basically done with this build.
My SSDs will be available shortly and at that time I set up a USB stick to install the OS, I turn it on and everything is ready, so at the time I made this video, my platform is built, it has a warranty, it will work fine except shipping damage, which it doesn't have, but if it did, I would discover it when I first turned it on and I don't have to worry about someone doing it. Come in here and get my records. There are these little locking clips that ensure that this front rear part of the front cover is not removed without authorization.
I don't think that the other cases in which Brian and the intern have support, but it gives a little security, in the case of the other boys, it is sad that mine far exceeds theirs. Mine is locked in the lab, most of them don't have lab keys so that's why I like the hp microserver gen10 plus when I chose it. It offers a really nice compact solution, it's about the same size as a four bay nasa you'd find from another nas vendor like qnap, synology or any of the others, but running
truenast you'll have a lot more feature sets. to offer you, you'll be able to do it, you can run zfs, it'll run Snapchat trigger compression, this, you could probably easily run d-dupe on it, but you'll want a bigger RAM footprint, I mean, overall, you'll probably start to push it a little bit. more but show me a four bay nas with 100 gigs and I'll be surprised but this guy has it so that's my setup for now and I hope the guys liked it so this is the overview of the part of my diy nas construction.
To start, I found an asrock b550 motherboard at micro center that was marked down to about $70 for the processor. I bought a ryzen 5 3600. I found a good deal on some ram, this is 64 gigs of ddr4 3600, some g scale jaws, good choice of budget ram, um, I decided to buy one, I think this is a chelsea, oh I'm not sure about the model number but it's a dual sfp plus um this is a super cheap one. Ocz old and cheap, it's a 600 watt power supply that I bought at a computer parts recycling center for five dollars. I have my two USB drives that I will use for installation, a display adapter and then a leon lee leon cool 205 case so Is it to configure the motherboard before putting it in the case?
Okay, so the next step is to put our motherboard and power supply into the case. And for that matter, you bought a leon lee 205 leon cool 205 cheap from microsoft, what are the chances that the power supply blows up pretty bad, so Kevin joined me or I joined him and we have all the builds on the table and you did exactly what I knew you would do. The intern did not disappoint with a build. that's partly great wtf and then of course I have mine which is um I have my broken 10 gig card that I hope still works and obviously I still need to assemble it or find someone to assemble it for me, um, what's your opinion?
We looked at these three systems, all of which are 800 or less, so the main thing, the main takeaway from this is that you and I have entrepreneurial backgrounds and the first things we started looking at were the entrepreneurial builds because it's not easy, yeah , that's right there are extra network interfaces on board but you get things like integrated vga you have a boot device most I have out of bounds out of bounds out of band system management mine is supported if I add the card but I have fixed 400 concert online um so I have an amd epic mine has more processing power than both of them combined I bet I think we looked at clock speed cores and this one came out I thought in I actually think I might have gotten over it, but it smells like cat urine for some reason, so why is that okay?
My point is with consumer boards, uh, unless you go for a cheaper rig with integrated graphics, they usually don't have any integrated video that you have to add on a graphics card and what. Ben realized during his build that you need to have a graphics card for the system to power up, so what did he choose here? Because it has a uh, it has two, it has the screen, two screen ports, I think, or one HDMI, one. displayport was with an old game card that is in all veracity problems what's wrong with your ecc ram? He doesn't have it either.
How about a case that is small and easy to store in a closet? I could put my case inside. You could put the cat in his case, which probably caused a little accident, so that's Ben's. His has a fancy transparent side panel that we've removed to limit glare in the video, so he has that battering ram style. How much RAM does he have? I think he might have had 16 or I think he had 32 gigs. I found a good deal on RAM, this is 64 gigs. I'm 16, so I'm doing pretty well. Yes, I have 16. and I think my budget allows me to steal a chunk of RAM from the lab, but we'll find that out later, but overall it's a good case.
That's what I was thinking initially, going with a PC case because they are a lot less, plus you even paid more for the glass side panel which isn't free, you didn't pay for a uh atx uh motherboard adapter for the back of your case, no, it's your open box, it doesn't include one, it's completely open, um, the crack. There is a gap, so over time fluff and other fun stuff will accumulate, but overall it came down to us having business experience and realizing that most of the platforms we will look at will include By default, the elements you need To build a standalone server, you took a different approach: faster CPU, maybe faster RAM, oh, what's your network?
He got a card there, so I'm looking at this card, I have no idea what. the network card has two ports on the back, I can't distinguish either one. I've never seen a car that looks like this so I'm not sure which one it is. We'll have to rewind the tape and see. We haven't seen its construction and we don't know all the things that are there, obviously I decided to buy a I think this is a Chelsea. Oh, I'm not sure of the model number, but it's a dual SFP. Also, let's talk about the compromises you and I had to make. doing what you feel like with your microserver is the biggest commitment, nothing compared to you oh stay out of here what pcie port because you don't have other things on board I guess well so I'm looking at my build versus yours both They have the same number of bays no, I have an extra one because I have the nvme drive yes and I think that will be the difference, but you can't really use it for anything because what else can you use it for?
It boots, well we've talked about this so we're considering USB booting on these systems which is not recommended but it works. So how much was your motherboard? I've forgotten now, but it was close to 600. Okay. So 549 I think just your motherboard, yeah, it was the same cost as the whole shipment, yeah, but look how awesome it is, look at this, it's amazing, it has so oh, I have four memory slots, you only have two , right? Yes, okay? So I only have two, I can only afford two dimmers, but I could buy more memory, so really the advantage of your rig having a little more on the RAM side, yes, but what it comes down to is you don't have to buy an additional card. for your out of band and nvme management right, you already know nvme, if you want nvme and four drives, now the other compromise with this case is that the accessibility of the drives is a little difficult, come on buddy, no front drive bays , so you have to remove the case to get to them, so I think mine was single, it has cases with access to the front compartment, but it is a little more expensive, how difficult it is to get to the base of my unit and even It includes eject buttons, right?
I only have one of your two ram slots full that I can see and you don't have SSD boot on your SSD or nvme on your system so here you want to see how easy it is to install my motherboard or reverse install it on your motherboard . I'm looking at your hands, what are you looking at? That's the beauty of it, all yeah, I get it, I get it, you bought a little server, I bought the parts to make a little server and sometimes you make compromises, yeah. I think overall as we look at this, the big takeaway is that you have to look at what you're trying to get out of building the deck as you start working on it, and while it's not right, it's not impossible. to find a server based on four or an 8, wait, you put a 100 gig card in this thing.
Yeah, I knew you'd do that, so there are some takeaways and a lot of them boil down to it's not hard to define a four and an eight. base server, the problem comes when you start, uh, when you start trying to do it with a particular budget or price, well, because we looked at that little lenovo m83 that turned it into a two bay nas with ssd boot and that thing was that. The total build was 160-something dollars and that was pretty impressive not counting storage. I should have and as a group of them, well, you could get three.
You could have gotten three of them grouped together and have sturdy storage. Okay, but we. We also made fun, or I did at least before, about a hard drive partner, a drive partner in general, so my drives have arrived and this is my moment where I think I'm going to shine, so we're working with wd. in these builds they sent me four of these 10 terabyte hard drives and they're not just wd reds the red plus, they're red plus so we haven't really seen many of these so I'm looking forward to seeing them. that will give me 40 terabytes and the wd black sn850 and what's so special about this fantastic flashing wp boot drive, well let's figure it out.
Remember I said I hadn't built a PC in 25 years. I just wanted to fill all the slots with cool stuff, this has the heatsink for gaming which is cool, it has rgb, uh, for light control, the only sad part of that story is that you won't be able to see it on my chassis yeah, you're not going to see much at all, no, but Ben might have benefited from this controller, it has lights, maybe so, I'm sure and maybe I'll share my ride with him, so who is he? your var for warranty support eh what do you mean by that?
If something breaks down along the way, who do you call? Well, why, in the first place, why would anything break well? I mean, look at the person, okay, every one of my don't break my neck. More than meets the eye, check this out. This thing is missing. I'm going to have to glue it to make it work well. Listen, this is guaranteed through Super Micro. How old do I think three? This has a b h 30 day replacement guarantee. Okay, but it's probably been 17 days already, so we should probably hurry up and make sure it works. This probably could have been sent back to the eBay guy.
It was that from the United States this was the first. It was a China problem. dram uh it should work uh the hard drives will be guaranteed through wd this case without uh access to the front drive will have some type of warranty so I have I'm covered well what do you have uh hp and do they have a year 90 days? The parts have no labor. I need to verify it, but I think it includes a year or three years on this particular build. I think with the xeon build it could be three years and it could even be on site.
I need to double check this so Sorry, I wonder what support Ben has? Half of Ben's components are used so well. I'm looking forward to it being like a discount. There's dust on the devices, so I'm guessing the warranty on it might have expired like four or five years ago on some of the ones. all the devices are good so the next step is to have someone put my system together, put the storage in, we'll get storage for the Bend system, storage for the Kevin system and then we'll do the performance showdown and see who has the better build.
Until then, thanks for tuning in and we'll be back with more information on these builds soon.
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