I am trying to find a low-energy solution for a good performance machine I can use for my weather satellite monitoring and my weather stations. My machines run 24/7, so I am trying to reduce the number of watts I use, and hence my electricity bill.
I have been a Gentoo enthusiast since probably 1999, and a regular subscriber to LinuxFormat for many years. My present machine runs CentOS 7, with Intel Core 2 Quad CPU Q6600 2.40GHz, it has 16GB of memory and two NICS bonded, because I need plenty of Ethernet speed for moving the weather satellite images around. It has two 500GB drives with RAID 1 and one 1TB without. The VGA is Nvidia Corporation GT200 GeForce GTX 260 dualhead for two monitors. Yup, lots of real estate, so quite a bit of power needed. Is there any advice you can give me?
Neil says: Yikes! That old Q6600 in itself will consume lots of power – its TDP is 105W. A modern desktop processor will likely halve this (taking into account lower-power DDR4 and motherboard chipset) and provide triple the CPU power, combined with integrated graphics able to run three displays and a motherboard with dual NICs.
The six-core AMD Ryzen 5 1600 is a good all-round choice – but you will need a graphics card on top – to build from scratch. On the Intel side, for similar speed, you’d want a Core i7 7700K, but it’s £100 more just for the chip, though it does have integrated graphics. Do let us know how you got on!