Andrew Roach is a user on You can follow them or interact with them if you have an account anywhere in the fediverse. If you don't, you can sign up here.
Andrew Roach @ajroach42

I just had a real dumb idea.

What's the cheapest x86 package I can get?

Like, I'm not concerned about size too much, but I need hdmi out, wifi, at least three full size USB ports, and a price under $100.

Does it exist?

· Web · 2 · 0

@ajroach42 I think you can get those in some stores.
I have no idea how it is elsewhere but in France we have those stores when you can sell used stuff and they will resell it, they often have some cheap laptops.


Sorry, I should have specified that I'm looking for something that I can purchase new and consistently.

@kelbot @ajroach42 That's even cheaper than an Intel Compute Stick. Pretty neat.

Here is another that I think meets your requirements. It even has a much more reasonable URL!

@kelbot That's cute!

I ended up getting the z83II from a re-seller on Amazon with next day shipping. I'm going to run some tests and if it all goes well I might be announcing a project next week.

Thanks so much for your help.

@ajroach42 There are quite a lot of POS and thin client systems out there with the connectivity you're looking for but as far as I know the cheapest ones are in the $100-150 range. Below that you have to give up on wifi and storage, basically.

I'm curious though: what's the project?

@jkb A while ago I wrote a bunch of scripts to form the UI and launcher for a game console built around an ARM board. It works, it's cute. There's still some polish to be done.

A co-worker was working an a game, and he was complaining that the hardware was too esoteric for him to build for.

We got to talking about the difference in price between this and an x86 board, and now I want to try the same basic software on a cheap x86 board and compare.

@Secstodon thank you for this welcome, and not at all flippant or useless comment.

:link: :thaenkin:

When the raspberry pi foundation releases an x86 board, we can talk. Until then, I'm not going to be using a raspberry pi to replace the raspberry pi my project was originally built around.

@ajroach42 ... I was sure they were x86 and that I was being helpful. I was even excited about sharing a platform I just bought and start playing with.


I'll go sit in the corner now.


Sorry! That post came off far too harsh. Sometimes I forget this isn't Birdsite, and that most people ehre are actually trying to be helpful. I just assumed it was a troll comment.

I apologize for being rude, I need to work on it.

The Pi's are all ARM based. I'm using a Raspberry Pi and an Orange Pi in my current tests. I'm curious how the same software would perform on something with an x86 in it.


The Pi's are really neat, and super cheap. They're great for a lot of projects, but I'm finding them a bit limiting for my current project, but I love working with them.

I hope you have success with yours!


@ajroach42 I'm really excited about mine. I really did mean well.

Wishing you luck on your project!

@Secstodon What do you have planned for yours? Which one are you using?

I have a 0 W that I want to turn in to the base for a laptop/tablet project. It's so small!

But screens are expensive, and time is short, and so I mostly just use it connected to my TV.

@ajroach42 so there's this really cool project I found.. I forget what it's called, but it broadcasts a WIFI hotspot, and is a sort of self contained Intranet with file sharing.

Problem is deciding a good place to put it with enough foot traffic to keep things interesting. I might run it out of my backpack next time I travel.

I'm also building my own Amazon dot :)

@Secstodon That's probably Piratebox, or Library box.

I've run a couple of those over the years (it's something I've written about in the past

I ran a store for a while, and had our piratebox derived project there, with another one at my apartment complex, and one at a local coffee shop. We'd manually sync them every once in a while.

@ajroach42 yes, that's it!

It's really cool you ran one, I was having trouble finding anyone who had and wrote about it.

Reading now

@ajroach42 wow. Are you still doing the project/newsletter?

@Secstodon Slowly but surely.

The newsletter covers all kinds of stuff, not just that project.

@djsundog and I and a few others here will occasionally toss around ideas and info.

We haven't made any serious progress in a while because I moved half way across the country and I haven't had as much free time (but that's changing this year!)

@ajroach42 @djsundog aww cool! I'll sign up.
I love the idea of that project, and I'm sure you guys have other smart things to say :)

@Secstodon :-D

I wish you luck with your BBS. Let us know how it goes!

@ajroach42 thanks :) my biggest problem is location.

I don't have a store, not enough foot traffic in my office, and putting it in the mall is likely illegal

@Secstodon You could add a battery pack and carry it around with you. Nothing illegal about that, although I'm not sure how much of a response you'd get without a fixed location and a little bit of an explainer.

We had fliers, and heavily modified the internal pages to better explain what was going on.

We ran in to a problem because mobile devices really hate intranets/captive portals. So that was kind of a bummer.


Yep! All the raspberry pi have either HDMI or Micro-HDMI.

Won't they don't have is an x86 processor. They're all ARM boards.