So prior to the HL15 being announced I was on planning putting together a server and bought a Asrock Rack ROMED8-2T/BCM. I wanted to ask if anyone else on here is using this motherboard with their HL15 and if so, how has it been so far? Any suggestions/recommendations? Also, if you do not mind sharing, what CPU did you end up with?
The HL15 is exactly the case I need, prior to it’s release this was my biggest issue as there are not that many cases out there that are not massive but can accommodate for so many drives. I am not looking to rack mount at this time but the fact that I can in the future with the HL15 is huge. Add to that the included backplane, seems like a nobrainer.
My biggest concerns right now I guess are fitment of the MOBO and cooling for the CPU as I know EPYC CPUs run a bit on the hot side so would appreciate if you could mention what you ended up doing in that regard.
Lastly, I’d like to go full with a full SSD build and was wondering what SSDs you’d recommend as well? To be honest, I do not have any reason for it at this time, I just would kind of like to do it if I can. Right now my real “needs” are just more storage and it would be awesome if it is stupidly fast but reliable. Down the line I definitely will be taking more advantage of the system’s capabilities as I plan to run VMs and host local services and Apps for personal use and self learning so was thinking of running TrueNAS Scale.
As mentioned in this post-FAQ for the 45HomeLab HL15 - #71 by LostFate
the Max size motherboard in the HL15 is 10.5"X13". As long as your Motherboard is less than that you should be ok.
As for the cooling, I don’t have a solid answer for you on that because we do not have that CPU but the fans we chose for the HL15 allow a lot of airflow through the front of the system back to the motherboard which allows us to cool the full build 6 core CPU passively.
Now the EPYC CPUs are hotter, but you should be able to put a big air cooler on it to cool the CPU. there have been plenty of people on the forums getting Noctua NH-D9 DX-3647 4U coolers to fit although not the exact cooler you would use other similar coolers should be enough cooling for the EPYC CPU you plan to use
I was thinking of using the Dynatron Cooler for EPYC and Threadripper. and swapping the fan for a noctua one.
I got the AsrockRack romed8-2t as well, along with an epyc 7302p and Silverstone XE04-SP3 for a cooler. running a stress test, the highest I saw it get was 50C, and I could barely hear the fan at all. the Silverstone cooler isn’t very tall, and it’s easy to flip it around to align with the case airflow. I’ve been testing my build in an older computer case until the HL15 arrives. I think the WD red pro drives I got are louder than the cpu fan, lol. the romed8-2t has 2 nvme slots, perfect for a mirrored boot drive. but you do have to move a jumper to borrow lanes from one of the pci-e slots to enable the second nvme slot. not a big deal when the board has so much pci-e already.
I plan to use this to replace my older Truenas Scale server. I’m going with a 3-way mirror of 1tb wd red sn700 drives in a 4 way pci-e bifurcation card for zfs metadata, and a raidz2 of 5x 22tb wd red pro drives. I mainly just want the drives for backups and for bulk storage like media or LLM models, with options to grow in the future if I want.
the romed8-2t supports bifurcation (tricky to find, AMD PCIE Link Width in the bios under chipset configuration), so you can fit a lot of fast nvme drives on pci-e. Otherwise, fitting a bunch of sata wd red sa500’s (or any other nas ssd) would be great for virtual machine use. the romed8-2t only has 2 mini-sas ports, so it would need an extra addon card to use all 15 slots in the hl15. I’m skipping that for now as I only have 5 sata drives to start with.
This build finally pushed me to get 10gig networking for my homelab, last month I setup a MikroTik CRS326-24S+2Q+RM for my new main switch.