[CQ-Contest] new hamshack computer

w9pa at w9pa.net w9pa at w9pa.net
Wed Nov 23 17:18:11 EST 2022

For an inexpensive small IBM Compatible PC , go to eBAY and search for 
NUC6i5.  You'll find some starting under $100.  The Intel NUC6 comes in 
two sizes, one little over 1" tall and one about 2.5" high.  I recommend 
the one using the Core i5 CPU.  K3LR uses 18 of them for Contesting and 
6 of the newer NUC7's for his Proteus-based Skimmers).  I use a NUCi5 
with DX Log, Win-Clus and N1MM+ (mainly DXLog).  The smaller NUC only 
uses M.2 SSD's.  The taller version has room for a 2.5" Disk in addition 
to the M.2 SSD

About half of K3LR's NUC's were USED and bought off of eBay, as are the 
several I use.

73 --> Dave, W9PA

On 2022-11-23 02:19, Michael Adams wrote:

> Over the summer, I joined the Mac family when I was looking for a 
> lightweight laptop with decent power, good battery life, and the 
> ability to charge off USB-C.   I got it because my work laptop is so 
> locked down as to be unusable for personal communications, and my 
> current Windows laptop and its power brick are rather bulky, and its 
> battery life sucks.  (It's a "gaming laptop" -- lots of memory, lots of 
> power, great graphics...all at the expense of a high power draw.)
> There are a lot of things I like about the Mac, but after a couple of 
> experiences of using it with a transceiver when operating 
> portable....I'm not a fan of the ham software I've used so far with it.
> Perhaps that's more a reflection of my being used to the ham software 
> available on PCs, and not having taken the time to climb the learning 
> curve for the relevant Mac applications.  But I'm thinking about going 
> portable for a QSO party in the spring, and I've started to contemplate 
> the logistics about lugging my Windows laptop for that adventure, so I 
> can use N1MM.
> My $0.02 worth for the original question -- For "just a shack 
> computer":
> * an i5 or an i7 processor (or whatever the AMD equivalent is), speed 
> mostly irrelevant
> * at least 16GB RAM (you could probably make do with 8 if you never 
> multitask)
> * solid state drive, size determined by other uses (probably minimum 
> 500GB)
> * minimum 1 HDMI/DP port if you have an ultrawide monitor; 2 such ports 
> if you're using normal-width monitors
> * if you need it and get a desktop, add a real serial port, either by 
> PCI card, or if the motherboard supports it, cabling the port directly 
> into the appropriate socket on the MB
> * extra sound interface (a good USB fob is probably sufficient) for 
> interface with the transceiver
> If you splurge, my preference would be for extra money to go towards 
> extra RAM first....but that's a reflection of my bias towards running 
> too many programs on a computer at once.
> The most recent Windows machine I bought for ham purposes was an 
> impulse buy of a small (5"x4.5"x1.5") no-name PC off Amazon: 
> https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B0977YQT3K   I got it for less than 
> $300 a year ago.   I was uncertain about buying an unknown Chinese 
> brand machine, but at that price it seemed like an acceptable gamble 
> for a project toy.
> It's not my shack computer, but it is running my cluster node, some 
> home automation tasks, and I've done some Office work on it as well 
> without issue.  I expect it'd be fine for most ordinary shack purposes. 
>  It's advertised as being able to be mounted on the back of a monitor 
> (saving desk space/reducing desk clutter), but I'd be a little 
> concerned about doing that if the monitor tends to run warm.
> I haven't looked to see if there are newer/better such machines 
> available on the market; I imagine there might be.  I wouldn't be 
> terribly surprised if some of those had discounted prices on Friday.   
> Just read through the reviews before buying, to reduce the risk of 
> investing in a lemon.
> --
> Michael Adams | mda at n1en.org
> -----Original Message-----
> From: CQ-Contest <cq-contest-bounces+mda=n1en.org at contesting.com> On 
> Behalf Of Gary J Ferdinand
> Sent: Tuesday, 22 November, 2022 16:03
> To: af5cc at fidmail.com
> Cc: Gerry Hull <vy1aaa at vy1ja.ca>; Ron Notarius W3WN 
> <wn3vaw at verizon.net>; CQ-Contest at contesting.com
> Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] new hamshack computer
> I'd get a Mac of appropriate size :)
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