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Re: [tlug] Looking for small form-factor desktop or inexpensive laptop

On 2019-12-20 19:47 +0900 (Fri), Joe Larabell wrote:

> I recall this being asked in the past but: (a) things change, (b) I didn't
> save the previous emails, and (c) I can't find the archive search button or
> it has disappeared. Anyway...

I've probably mentioned in the past that a Liva Z N4200 (Pentium
N4200) has been one of my primary desktop machines for several years
now, and I'm still quite happy with it. I've also used a Liva Z N3350
(Celeron N3350) and that was sluggish. More info on these and a few
other small-form-factor systems, including Japanese vendors, is at:

I've got mine loaded with 8 GB of RAM, but I've used it with 4 GB and
it was still workable. But heavy use of a web browser will at best
push the limits of 4 GB; nothing else is a big issue. You may also
want to add an M.4 SSD if the 16 GB internal SSD isn't going to be big
enough for you. I make do with the internal and a 16 GB USB flash
drive, but the USB flash drive is definitely on the slower side and
not good for heavily used files.

One of the main things you'll want to watch out for is what kind of
monitors you can drive. The Livia Z N4200 drives a 4K monitor from the
DisplayPort with no problem, and I've run it with two 4K monitors, but
the second was on the HDMI and would run at only 30 Hz. I didn't have
a problem with that, but some people seem to dislike it. I wouldn't
get a desktop system that can't drive at least one 4K monitor. The
onboard HD Graphics 505 were fine as far as accelleration goes, so
long as the 3D stuff you're doing isn't serious gaming.

On 2019-12-21 18:36 +0900 (Sat), Stephen Lasseter wrote:

> Depending on your needs, a Raspberry Pi might be worth consideration.

I have tried this with a PI3 and the fastest Sandisk SD card I could
find and it was significantly lacking in both CPU power and disk I/O
speed. For a daily use desktop system I'd stay away from anything with
an ARM or Atom processor; get an x86 of some flavour. It doesn't have
to be i3 level (as mentioned above, my Pentium N4200 is fine) but even
the lowest-end mobile Celerons are not snappy. Probably if you stick
to devices with four cores (real or faked with hyperthreads) you
should be ok. And a SATA or M.2 or similar-level disk interface, i.e.,
not USB or SD card.

Curt J. Sampson      <>      +81 90 7737 2974

To iterate is human, to recurse divine.
    - L Peter Deutsch

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