Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

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crashtech
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Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 12:58 am

I have a somewhat specialized application that I need help with. What's needed is a PC that can mount to a wall with minimal clearance. Space is tight so a touchscreen-only experience would be best. Apps would include a time tracking app like Clockify, high quality music playback via Pandora etc, and occasional web searches or instructional videos. I have a VESA mount.

What was used before was an Ivy Bridge era AIO, but the touchscreen started going crazy and commanding weird things to happen all on its own. I'm presuming an updated replacement for this would be the way to go, but I would not rule out something like a NUC+touchscreen or any other solution that makes sense. I didn't like the junk I had even before it acted up. Budget is not a huge issue, but don't want to get too crazy. Help?

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biodoc
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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by biodoc » Sat Jan 15, 2022 5:54 am

What about a touchscreen monitor + an intel PC stick?

I've never used one but it seems like a possible "low end" solution.

crashtech
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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 12:19 pm

That's an interesting possibility! Looks like the one you link isn't actually made by Intel, I wonder if that makes a difference. I have a bias toward big core PC stuff, still thinking...

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Icecold » Sat Jan 15, 2022 12:47 pm

There are a lot of PC's in the NUC type form factor on Amazon that might work. Something like this - https://www.amazon.com/Beelink-Windows- ... B09J2MDZ9F The problem though is touchscreen prices currently are super high. Elo screens are back ordered for months and pretty much all the other touchscreen brand pricing went through the roof.

Most modern touchscreen all in ones don't seem to have VESA mounts from what I can tell, I'm not sure why. Maybe something used like this would work? - https://www.ebay.com/itm/193822843249

The compute sticks are nice, but they are definitely pretty slow. They generally run slower than you would expect because they are thermally constrained in that form factor.

What size do you want the screen to be? Would something like a 13" Surface Pro X with a wall mount case work?

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:04 pm

I wouldn't mind a NUC if there was a way to attach it to the wall. And yeah, the lack of VESA mounts on modern AIOs is a real drag and part of the reason I posted this. That last thing you posted would work, it just seems like they are a little proud of it, being that it is a Haswell!

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:05 pm

I didn't know they had wall mount cases for the Surface Pro? Need to look into that.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Skillz » Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:15 pm

Kind of sounds like you just need to mount a tablet to the wall. They make all sorts of tablet mounts for mounting them to walls you can try. Not sure which eco system you prefer whether it's Windows, Android or Apple.

If a tablet is out the question because you want something a little more customizable on the hardware side then get a HDMI capable touch screen in a size you desire;

Here's a 12 inch "industrial" touch screen with HDMI and VESA mount.
https://www.newegg.com/12-nexanic-touch ... 0044-00013

Then get yourself a Raspberry Pi such as this;
https://www.raspberrypi.com/products/ra ... 4-model-b/

Install your preferred Linux ditro that has all the aps you need and go from there.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:28 pm

One thing that keeps me from wanting to go to tablet is that Pandora automatically lowers sound quality on mobile devices, their highest bitrate is restricted to PC for some reason. I can hear the difference. I've been wanting to get into a different streaming service without this restriction, but there's a lot of inertia as we all have our favorite stations etc.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:49 pm

Gonna drop this here while I keep looking:
https://vivo-us.com/products/mount-vesa01

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 2:07 pm

I also have some laptops laying around that would work if they could be secured to the wall.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Skillz » Sat Jan 15, 2022 2:18 pm

crashtech wrote:
Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:28 pm
One thing that keeps me from wanting to go to tablet is that Pandora automatically lowers sound quality on mobile devices, their highest bitrate is restricted to PC for some reason. I can hear the difference. I've been wanting to get into a different streaming service without this restriction, but there's a lot of inertia as we all have our favorite stations etc.
Install Linux on the tablet and it should trick Pandora into thinking it's a desktop PC instead of a mobile device such as a phone or tablet.

Added in 8 minutes 13 seconds:
The more I look around at this, the more I think i'd personally dig deeper into a Raspberry Pi setup. Check out this article.

https://www.instructables.com/Flush-Wal ... uchscreen/

Added in 1 minute 17 seconds:
Here is another less intrusive solution.

https://gazouta.com/pi-wall-mount/

crashtech
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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 4:19 pm

Have any of you used a Thinkpad docking station? I wonder if one could be screwed to the wall. Might not be sturdy enough.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Skillz » Sat Jan 15, 2022 7:53 pm

This popped up on my Amazon "you might be interested in" stuff.

https://www.amazon.com/SmartiPi-Touch-O ... B07WXK38YM

So you can easily just drill this to the surface of the wall with the pi and touch screen. Then just run power to it.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sat Jan 15, 2022 9:47 pm

I'll have to find out if I can get high quality sound with that. It's an interesting idea, thank!

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Skillz » Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:35 pm

I have a couple Raspberry Pis here, but I have no idea on how to tell if they're high quality sound or not. I listen to Pandora (used to at least) and iHeartRadio through my phone speakers, bluetooth speakers and my Jeeps speakers. They all sound the same to me, except the external speakers are louder than my phones internal speaker. :lol:

Added in 42 minutes 36 seconds:
I've come to the conclusion that I get on Amazon a lot for mostly no reason at all. Just hopped on Amazon and this was recommended to me.

https://www.amazon.com/Raspberry-Touchs ... slink=true

This seems to be the best option so far. The 7" touch screen has a built in case for the raspberry pi. Just mount it to the wall and go.

Granted, we need to figure out if the raspberry's OS can support high quality sound.

I was thinking, what are you playing the sound/music on? Because the raspberry doesn't come with speakers. Additionally, if you're using a bluetooth speaker (or some external speaker) then you'll need connections for that on the raspberry which will raise the price on it some.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by crashtech » Sun Jan 16, 2022 3:38 pm

I have a Dragonfly DAC to a 1/8" headphone to RCA cable that runs to a Yamaha amp and some big modded Sony speakers. Not super serious but decent. So all that is needed is a USB-A port.

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Re: Help/Advice Finding Specialized PC

Post by Skillz » Sun Jan 16, 2022 3:56 pm

Oh okay, it does have USB-A ports then.

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