[LAU] Took the leap and ordered an Intel Mini-ITX

Ken Restivo ken at restivo.org
Sun Jun 1 01:20:26 EDT 2008

On Thu, May 29, 2008 at 11:26:27AM -0600, Thomas Vecchione wrote:
> Well since it was asked, there are certainly CF to IDE adaptors out there
> and are fairly common for mini-itx setups.  SATA however might be another
> matter, I haven't kept an eye open for them in a while.
> I am looking at doing something similar with the remnants of my workstation
> when the MB crashed, I can pick up an ASUS rackmount Dual-940 combo for
> about $250, and I have most of the other components.  Benn looking at
> putting together a Pd processing box for shows that I would access via SSH
> and X-Forwarding to program as needed.  Mini-Itx was something I kept a
> close eye on for a while, and stil keep an eye on for this type of purpose,
> but not to close lately.  Not a bad project though.

The thing arrived yesterday. Yikes, that was fast shipping. I ordered from mini-box.com; they're in Fremont, apparently, and since I'm only across the bay in San Francisco, it got here nearly instantaneously.

Slapped in the 1GB RAM stick, plugged in a VGA monitor, USB keyboard and mouse, and an external USB hard drive, and it booted right up.

I bought a Kingston 8GB USB key and will use that as my solid state flash drive. Quick, simple, cheap solution.

I'm now downloading the 64studio install CD image (only 7 hours and 54 minutes to go!) and will try that out that. Since this is a 64-bit Celeron, I could probably just copy over the Debian Sid setup I have on my laptop, and use that, but I want to try using a stock music distro instead this time around.

It draws 2 amps at full CPU-- not bad. The main system northbridge/southbridge chip gets crazy hot though, even though it has a heatsink on it, it gets hot on the *other* side of the board too! The CPU seems to stay very cool. Wondering if I can get a more massive heatsink for that system chip.

I'm still looking around for a case for it. I want to squeeze it into the smallest, lightest possible case. It looks like something 8" square by 3" high would work. I'd prefer plastic but some kind of metal is probably better for heat conduction. Might find out what it'd cost to have a metal shop build me a custom aluminum box that size, and go with that.

With the lcdproc package, it should be very easy to hook up my HD7440-clone LCD to the parallel port on this thing, and have a UI for it.


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