How cool is that Hypercube Lego Server, featuring the powerful Xeon D-1540 on tiny and familiar Supermicro X10SDV-F motherboard

Posted by Paul Braren on Jan 19 2016 in
  • Virtualization
  • ESXi
  • Network
  • Homelab
  • Hyper-V
  • What a nice way to start the day, thanks to TinkerTry commenter Jay Oliphant @JackOfAllTech. I somehow hadn't spotted this article yet, what a great find! Jay is also the super helpful TinkerTry visitor who helped me squash a strange TinkerTry CDN bug, back in 2014.

    The article is an in depth and fun look at a rather novel approach to chassis design for these generally efficient and cool-running Xeon D-1540 motherboards. He also uses heatsinks on his M.2 Samsung SM951 drives that can heat up a bit when abused over long periods, along with some beloved Samsung 850 EVOs.

    Supermicro X10SDV-F
    Supermicro X10SDV-TLN4F

    These two motherboards are so similar that they even share the same X10SDV-TLN4F(F) User's Manual.

    The only significant differences are the lack of two Intel X552 10GbE ports in the lego variant, along with the lack of an included CPU cooling fan, with a Noctua 60mm stepping in to that role, as seen above. Mike Schropp, in his masterpiece at Total Geekdom, explains:

    Click the image to read the full article, w/ great pics.

    Conventional case design usually employs a single intake and a single exhaust fan (though sometimes just an exhaust). This systems works well enough and gets the job done, but excelling where mass-produced systems do an adequate job is an essential aspect of my computer design. I aim to design a high-performance cooling system that offers maximum cooling performance. One of the challenges usually faced in smaller form-factor systems is heat and controlling thermals, but the design of these Lego cases takes that small form factor and uses it to our advantage.
    The design of the system itself is built around a couple of core principals:
    -Excellent Cooling Performance
    -Excellent Reliability
    -Excellent Acoustics
    -Platform Versatility
    -Extended Features
    -Power Consumption
    -Upgradable and Serviceable
    Anyone who’s ever interacted with server grade equipment knows that a lot of noise is not usually a big concern when it comes to these kinds of systems...

    What do you think, do you love it for the cool factor alone?

    See also at TinkerTry

    Supermicro SuperServer 5028D-TN4T booting VMware ESXi 6.0, showing watts used. Jul 06 2015.
    Supermicro SuperServer 5028D-TN4T booting Windows 8.1, showing watts used. Jul 06 2015.
    Power efficiency of a Z68 Motherboard System, using a CyberPower UPS's LCD Display to measure watts. Aug 05 2011 - yeah, we've come a long way, in terms of efficiency!

    See also

    Samsung 950 Pro vs Samsung SM951 Thermal Comparison