I really wanted to come up with a powerful workhorse rackmount server that would fit comfortably into my short-depth server cabinet (maximum 15" depth). I came up with a list of requirements for my 1U server:

  • Short-depth (under 12" deep so I'd have plenty of room for cable management
  • Power efficient (max 65 w)
  • As many cores as I can get at 65W TDP
  • At least 64GB RAM
  • 10GbE networking
  • Has to be quiet (that's a relative term - but virtually silent when idle and rack is closed is what I was aiming for)

It ended up being quite the journey. As many homelab enthusiasts know, it isn't easy to build a 1U server that is quiet and powerful. It's even more difficult to build one that is quiet, powerful, and 10" deep.

1U Rackmount AMD Ryzen Virtualization Server Build

I went through 3 different CPU coolers, 3 different fan configurations, and 2 different chassis.

Parts List

Here are the parts used in the build. I won't devote a section to it but in order to create that back panel for the DC power in connector I used this aluminum panel and these aviation snips to cut, and this metal hole punch to create the hole.

Items beginning with [x] are ones that I didn't end up using

Chassis

Power Supply

  • Mini-Box picoPSU 160-XT kit - I opted for a picoPSU because of noise and space constraints. Mini-Box has quality power supplies AND AC/DC convertors and I am confident in their reliability as I use them within spec. Stress testing the CPU, I wasn't really reaching even 60% of the rated capacity.

Cooling

Server Components

Please note that I only link products that I have bought and tested myself, and some of the links above are Amazon affiliate links, which I earn a commission from (at no additional cost to the buyer).