HP Pavilion 550 AMD A8 Quad-Core Desktop

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HP Pavilion 550 AMD A8 Quad-Core Desktop
Price: $229.99
Shipping Options:: $5 Standard
Shipping Estimates: Ships in 3-5 Business Days. (Wednesday, Jun 08 to Monday, Jun 13) + transit
Condition: Factory Reconditioned

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Previous Similar Sales (May not be exact model)
1/3/2016 - $249.99
11/9/2015 - $279.99 - Click To See Discussion (17 comments)

5/27/2016 - $229.99 (Woot Plus)
5/27/2016 - $249.99 (Woot Plus)
5/24/2016 - $259.99 (Woot Plus)

Reviews over at Best Buy

Very slow processor. As slow as an 8 year old Intel Core2 Duo E8400

CPU Benchmark 2517
https://cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=AMD+A8-6410+APU&id=2266

Would this be good if all I want to use it for is my plex server? Or do you think I could even get away with a cheaper model? Don’t make fun. I love my plex server and so does my family.

While I personally think this form factor is too big for a dedicated Plex server, it’s hard to beat the price if that’s all you expect out of it. It’s probably not going to be as stable and energy efficient as say a QNAP TS-451+, but it costs a heck of a lot less. If you have a lot of media to host, this case does have room for more HDD’s, and you could probably really improve performance with a 128GB SSD to host the OS and Plex Server software on while using the HDDs for media storage without jacking your costs up too significantly.

Things to be very aware of with this PC:

The CPU is soldered into the motherboard and is non-replaceable.

It can only host 16GB of RAM max.

The motherboard is Mini-ITX, it only has 2 RAM slots and absolutely 0 expansion slots (most mini-ITX boards have at least 1 PCIe 16x slot for a GPU, this one doesn’t) so no upgrades are going to be possible to this computer’s performance beyond an SSD and 16GBs RAM without replacing the motherboard. The good news is this case will accept micro-ATX motherboards which are all the rage right now and offer a lot of options at a decent cost.

It has built in WiFi, but maxes out at 802.11n, so for a Plex server you’re going to need to run a CAT6 cable to it, or “make your CPU hurt” to host 1080p or better, and more than one stream at a time is going to be jittery (do you share your server with family, or do your kids stream to their rooms while you’re watching movies, etc.?).

All in all, if you just want to use this as a Plex server, I think it could work, just don’t expect to upgrade it as your needs evolve.

Here’s the HP specs sheet

65W external power supply?

Laptop board in a big box…kind of silly. Not sure why all the empty space, other than they may be trying to sell the feeling of a real desktop without actually providing a real desktop. Memory can be expanded, but there’s no ability to make use of the extra drive bay unless you buy an SATA to USB 3 cable, or similar. There is no additional SATA plug on the board. Power supply outside the box. This turned out to be much slower than expected given the specs. I believe that Windows 10 needs a more robust machine to meet its needs, so this would probably be better suited to windows 7. I’ve enjoyed HP Pavillions for years, but this has been a dissapointment…on the brighter side, it showed up quick and worked out of the box.