Upgrading from Pi to something more powerful, what to choose?

haha, no the 61.3 is the processor temp. bottom graph is the attic temp sensor, a (somewhat calibrated) Hue motion sensor
practically had a meltdown yesterday (82.3), so exploring true upgrading now:

even though simply waving a piece of paper above the opened Pi takes down the temp significantly, so maybe a small fan would do wonders too, so a case like the Argon is useful anyways…

hi Tom,

you probably posted before, but please can you tell me what hardware you’re using and which install method? upgrading has been green lighted, and Id like to check what I should do, added to the hw notions Petro listed above.

That’s beefier than mine

And that runs HA only? Or also the other packages, like Plex, Grafana, influx, mariadb etcetc?

And , no storage, so you have another server for the media files?

Sorry if this strays away too much from this threads topic…

I would recommend looking at some of the HP, Dell, Lenovo small form factor desktops on eBay. These are know quantities, good replacement parts availability. Corporations do massive rip and replace upgrades of these and send the old units to resellers. I picked up a HP ProDesk 600 G1 Desktop Mini with i5 4Gb RAM, 200 GB SSD for USD 100 from someone here on forum. I had 2 8 GB SODIMMS that fit it laying around from a long ago laptop that died. I added a Google Coral m.2 AI chip to motherboard for video AI processing. Runs 18 watts, quiet fans, Ubuntu 20.04.

Have a look at this Tiny/Mini/Micro PC project:

I second that, and will add, most of those systems are designed to run 24/7.

My is even certified for that…


I think I have the exact same one! I think you recommended XCY to me actually. I only use it for Proxmox and have a number of HA dev instances on it. It’s not on all the time… My everyday workhorse HA is on an Intel NUC Celeron I got before I heard about those XCY’s etc from aliexpress. I put a 2TB SSD in mine…

Yes. The original plan was to move my Cloud Key over to the Ubiquiti addon and also run an NVR addon but that didn’t happen. Mainly as I decided not to put all my eggs in one basket and I’m not sure the fanless case could keep up with the load. When I run a full snapshot (600-700MB) the CPU temp gets up to 70+ °C. Normally it sits around 40 °C.

Restarts take about 30 to 60 seconds. It would be shorter except I have one or two integrations that take a long time to restore (looking at you in particular Daikin integration).

I provided my own SSD, I’m not a fan of the cheap Chinese SSDs.

Ugh. I just spilt this all to a new topic to avoid clutter in the release topic. Then realised someone already had, and had to move it back to the previous split. Someone should take away my mod privileges.

I kind of over did it. It was cheap at the time, and I am susceptible to mission creep. I only need a Pentium… but the i3 is cheep, oh the i5 isn’t much more… oh the i7 isn’t much more than that… etc

This is a very good recommendation.

Alternatively second hand laptops come with a built in UPS (battery) and attached keyboard and monitor.

I did post the link it was a good deal. I’m pretty sure someone here recommended it to me.

ok thanks everyone, still have to consume all of this. leaning towards a ‘beefier’ setup :wink:
which makes me need to understand the software part of it…

checking this Generic x86-64 - Home Assistant for a NUC, am I correct this is the OS, like we use that for the PI, only now for a NUC? Meaning we can’t install other pieces of software next to HA?

Because that’s what I would be needing I think: a NUC/Mini PC with its own OS, on which I install HA, Plex server (forcing me to an I7 processor…) , MariaDB, Videostreaming software etc etc.

Or am I completely misunderstanding all of this.

I am not simply looking for a processor load of 1% and have the processor do nothing besides that… or a simple quick startup. Really into serious upgrading, as economical as possible of course but hey, reliability may come with a couple of watts, as Petro said, and as Tinkere added on Discord:

  1. A modern CPU will idle at low power
  2. High performance CPUs will spend less time in high power modes, and may actually draw less power over time than a low performance CPU that’s very busy

many of these mini PC’s come with Windows Pro, and I dont think thats what you all are talking about isnt it?

(btw I do have an old Synology NAS which keeps the family backups and my full audio library (quite huge…) so that would be kept I guess. However, it now also runs Plex server, for which it obviously isn’t suited anymore. It shuts down at night, so not good for any other of the mentioned services above, which need to be 24/7, and I ,ike the ‘certified’ devices because of that.

So next to the Hardware question comes the Software solution… what would your advise be on the matter?

Don’t buy one with an os. If it comes with an os, you can just remove it. But typically the cost of the os is built into the price so it’s a waste of money. For nucs, there’s an option to purchase without an os. I can’t say for the rest.

That link is HassOS. So you’d be running HassOS, you still get all your addons. MariaDB and Frigate are both addons. IIRC MariaDB is a official addon, and Frigate (video object detection/ partial NVR) is custom. So nothing to worry about that.

I wouldn’t ditch the synology nas, however I would consider putting your database on it via mariadb and phpmyadmin. It’s rock solid for me and phpmyadmin allows you to manage the database.

As for video streaming, you could put it anywhere. I use my synology for that too and it works fine.

Isn‘t the processor usage the main factor? If the pi is thermal throttling, which it for sure does in your case, (mine does between 70/80°C) just add a 5 dollar fan/case that runs permanently from the GPIOs. Put the pi on a soft pad or something and you wont really hear it. I mean I don‘t know your system, but spending a few hundred dollars because of thermal issue… idk.


If he’s planning on doing object detection, he’ll only get 1 camera on his PI before it starts struggling unless he keeps the camera res low. IIRC he said it was on his list.

The Dell Outlet (www.dell.com/outlet) is also a good place to look for new or refurbished computers. I think some may be returns that have been refurbished. If you wait & search they have sales from time to time too.

The XCY if you get that will typically come with a small drive loaded with Windows (a pirate copy) so you can just blow that away.
You might consider Proxmox or Debian+Supervised or of course HAOS…

Yes the temp throttle has been an issue for sure and halted the pi before. Apparently we don’t even need a fan for that, look what happens when I put it sideways (still without the top)

I did also put the SSD back in directly, and took out the powered HD…

The cooler room was the first decrease you see left, the cutoff at the 1pm is the position on the side.

All this while still averaging at around 12%, minimum 4%

You made yourself a low cost convection fan :smiley: nice to know that this works with the pi.
So there you are at 55°C. When I attached my 50 cents cooling pads and a small fan, it went down about 15-20°C and now is slightly above 40 during „idle“ in an enclosed cabinet and peaks are just over 50.

the slight elevation at the end is because the outside temperature increased.