NUC PC for Hamradio

With my PC running when doing hamradio I noticed the level of noise coming from my PC.

My PC looks like this:

It runs fine but the cooling fans generate a constant level of noise that started to annoy me and i started browsing the internet for a more quiet PC.

Intel NUC i3

So after some research on the web I ordered  the Intel NUC (nuc7i3bnh):
Yes, it is really small, those are two usb ports on the front, another two are on the back as well as an HDMI and DC port for the mains adapter.

This PC comes with a CPU but no memory and no harddisk.

Harddisk is the wrong word here, todays hardddisk are solid state, small and look like this:

This one is from Intel (Intel 1607243) and stores 128 Gigabytes of data (yes that is 137.438.953.472 bytes !), much more than I will ever need for this PC !

Next I choose 2 sticks of 4GB RAM memory (Crucial CT2K4G4SFS824A)







Adding the memory and storage to the NUC is super easy, step by step documentation is included, I only needed two philips screwdrivers.

Check the specs here for a complete list of all connectivity (wifi, bluetooth, soundcard, USB-C and more)

Installing the software

After powering up the NUC for the first time, it is ready to boot from  a usb memory stick in order to install the operating system.

Windows 10 pro installed quick with no issues, next I re-installed my applications form my old to my new PC.

N1mm, Log4OM, CW skimmer, HDSDR,  Bandmaster, Omnirig and Office 2016 they all run great.

Typical CPU with N1MM, HDSDR and CW skimmer all up and running is about 20%.


Time to check the difference in performance. I used the tool Novabench for this.

My old PC runs an Intel I5 CPU vs. an I3 in my newNUC.
Memory is 8 GB DDR4 in both computers
Harddisks are both solid state.

Result: The NUC scores 10% slower than my old pc.

Can I tell the difference ?

A little.

Do I care ?

Not really, he NUC still runs my software fast enough for me, and the noise level has dropped a lot.

Score Old PC:Score New NUC:

Final Thoughts

As you understand by now I really like my new NUC PC.

Today personal computers do not have to be big and loud, this Intel NUC replaces my old PC perfectly.

It has plenty of CPU to run all my apps smoothly.

When ordering I was not sure if 4 usb ports would be enough but this also worked out fine:

I use 1 for my keyboard/mouse, another 1 for my IC-7300 and 1 for my SDRplay, so still 1 left for further expansion.

Installation was easy, total time from installing the hardware, operating system, applications, and restoring my datafiles took about 4 hours.

After installation of all software + 5GB of MP3 files i still have 90 GB disk storage left.

Total cost for NUC, RAM and harddisk E400 with free shipping from to The Netherlands

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