Pulling the Trigger

Get a cheap/medium range NUC for HA. Works flawless and is well-powered for the future as well.
For networking a lot of HA users (myself included) use Unifi gear, its cheapish and decently configurable with an ok UI.

What is the NUC for? What does it enable to happen? Thank you

To run Home Assistant

Geez. need like a tutorial…lol. So I def need the NUC? I’m going to buy. :slightly_smiling_face:

You need something to run HA on.

That can be a Pi4 with an SSD, or an oDroid using eMMC. However a NUC is a good step up from there and gives you the ability to do more.

Wherever you thought you heard it, it was an incomplete source of information. There are four recognized ways to install Home Assistant:

You’ll have to decide which is best suited for your needs.

are there people out there I could hire to help me out?

Hire a professional systems integrator or a Home Assistant tutor? What sort of help are you seeking?

This has cropped up many times and would not be a good solution, if you buy zigbee bulbs like hue or tradfri, how would you like to pay your guy €250/$250 to change a bulb for you everytime a bulb goes ?

A NUC is an Intel term for the ‘next unit of computing’ - just their term for a very small form factor pc that was built to attach to the vesa mounts on the back of modern flat screen monitors.

I recommend that you just start with a Pi4b 4G run with it for 6 months to decide if this is for you or not then you can invest in better hardware as your wish, but probably 90% of users a happy long term with a €60 PI (admittedly there’s also the case, the power supply, an uSD card and a dongle if you go z-wave or zigbee but ALL that can still be had for less than €120

1 Like

This is best advice I have heard to date

If you rush out and buy something you will likely find that it doesn’t fit your needs. A RasPi 4 or old laptop/desktop is good starting point for someone that has never had this type hardware. After one time you will learn your needs and can buy appropriately vs buy and try to make it work.

Don’t I view the HA interface and setup my system commands etc. through a computer?

Basic setup help…and getting started. That help.

Home Assistant is free software. It is used by tens of thousands of home automation enthusiasts. There are many resources available to learn it, ranging from the official documentation, to blogs, video tutorials, even podcasts. It’s very much a DIY thing.

However, if you want to hire someone to serve as a tutor, I imagine someone will take your offer. Good luck!

Yes. Well, any device with a web browser really. Phone or tablet also works well and there are apps for Home Assistant. A computer is certainly easier when entering configuration info

Got it. So that’s where I get confused about how ras PI or NUC come into play/intergrate if everything is done via computer/web browser

You need some sort of device to actually run the Home Assistant software. That can be one of many choices: RPi, NUC, laptop, server machine etc. As suggested above, since you are starting out a RPi is a nice simple and cheap entry level device to run Home Assistant.

Home Assistant runs ‘headless’ so you can’t just plug a monitor and keyboard into the device running HA (Home Assistant) to view / configure it. Once it’s installed you never need to physically access that device again unless you want to unplug it.

Once its up and running you will ‘view’ the HA interface and do all your configuration via a web browser from another device, ie: another PC, phone, tablet etc.

I started off running HA on a RPi3 but upgraded to a NUC when I wanted to use it to also record my CCTV cameras. A RPi simply doesn’t have the processing power for that kind of load.

1 Like

Thank you…

So for example …why can’t HA run only on a pc instead of NUC?

You can. We tend to use NUC’s for their nice low power consumption and small form factor. You can use a PC if you want. The other factor is that there is a Home Assistant image available specifically for a NUC.

PC performance depends on memory, cpu, gpu, and other factor.

A server is no more than a computer that is generally used headless(without monitor, keyboard, mouse).

A NAS is a term for server with a lot of storage attached. The storage is useful if you have lots of movies, music and want to have them available/playable by your devices

NUC is a specific model of PC. It is small, compact and have powerful cpu. Memory, cpu etc is upgradable but has limit here. Costs start at $200USD.

Raspberry Pi is another form-factor computer. It has several model versions, latest being Rasberry Pi 4. This has set memory and cpu and cannot upgrade unless buy newer better model. Cost are around $20 - $80USD.

Others recommended other model computers; rack mountable, desktop. The performance and cost if these may vary greatly.

In the end all these are computers. Which one to get greatly depends on needs. A Raspberry Pi makes great server and may be setup to function as NAS by using usb drives. A NUC is great server but make good NAS or desktop.

If you have old desktop or laptop. You can just use those.