For years now, I have had a dedicated computer in my house to run the Plex Media server, hosting my media content (Photos, Music, Home Videos & so on) and also as a server with a copy of the data I have in the cloud storages (Dropbox & Onedrive). For a few years it was an old iMac and last year I upgraded to an AMD Ryzen 7 PC. During the pandemic as I had a need for a new PC for my work, I converted the PC for Plex from Windows Server 2019 to Windows 10 and turned it into my main workstation. With Plex gone away, I started receiving too many audience requests from my wife, sisters, mother-in-law, niece and nephews who were accessing our family photos and videos from the server. I decided to shop for a new PC that can run Plex Media Server. This time, instead of spending the fortune that I did for the Ryzen 7 PC, I decided to go on a budget.
Unlike in the past, in the last ten years, the number of people who make (assemble) a custom PC nowadays has come down. Most go for a PC from popular brands like HP, Lenovo, Dell and in recent years from Asus (like I did for a Zenbook). Only the power users and gamers do this, so the market has become niche. There is a bewildering number of choices to be made for every component that goes into a PC. Earlier each CPU model will have only one type of motherboard from Intel, but now for say an AMD Ryzen 7 5xxx CPU, ASUS alone has 3 to 4 motherboard choices from a price of INR 10000 to INR 50000. Then there are different speeds of memory; even for SSD, there are SATA SSD and NVMe M2; then are numerous options for the cabinet and so on.
Disclosure: I write reviews about products that I have bought for my usage and paid in full. There were no sponsorship or advertisement, or commission of any sort involved in this post.
After spending a day going through the options from the OEMs websites and Amazon India, I bought the following for about INR 38,500 (USD 510):
- Intel Core i5 10400,
- ASUS Prime H410M-E Motherboard with Intel Graphics 630,
- 16GB DDR4,
- 256 GB SSD &
- Zebronics Cabinet with SMPS.
To the above, I connected a 4 TB HDD, a Monitor, a Keyboard, a Mouse and installed a licensed copy of Windows 10 that I had with me. The machine runs fine and Plex works well.
Windows 11 is around the corner, so to enable TPM 2.0 I used this guide for the procedure. For more information on Windows 11 and motherboards support see my earlier post.