- Dell Optiplex 3020m
- Turned off WiFi and BT on the BIOS
- Hyperthreading off on the BIOS
- Intel Core i3 4170T 3.2GHz
- 12 GB RAM
- Kingston SSDNow V300 240GB SSD
- Windows 10 Pro
- EXP GDC Beast 8.5c
- NGFF Cable
- Zotac GeForce GTX 1060 Mini 6GB
- Silverstone Strider Essential 500W 80+
I bought this Dell Optiplex 3020m machine to be somewhat of a low power home server. I did some quick tests and on load I was reading around 65 watts which is not too bad if I would leave this running for most of the week. I installed ESXi on this machine and spun up several virtual machines I use for work. I wondered if this could serve as some portable gaming machine when I travel if I use an EXP GDC setup. I examied the BIOS if I needed to flip some switches, and the only thing I turned off was the WiFi and the Bluetooth thinking that it might conflict if im using the PCIe slot. For some reason Hyperthreading was turned off, I left it that way.
Taking apart the 3020m was easy, this YouTube video provides all the steps needed . I pulled out my 240GB SSD and the 1060 from my gaming machine and connected the NGFF connector to the little tiny slot under the hard drive. The screw was a pain since the card was short, so I used a different screw just to hold it in place.
I kept the PSU in the case and just pulled out the needed cables to power the EXP GDC.
After installing Windows 10 and making sure that all drivers are installed, I then uninstalled the built in graphics card driver (checking the delete the files option) and shut down the machine. With all cables in place, I plugged the HDMI cable from the monitor to the 1060 and plugged in the EXP GDC HDMI cable to the device and it powered on.
Windows showed up and somewhat automatically installed the correct drivers. I opted to install the latest drivers downloaded from Zotac just to make sure. The driver 188.8.131.5213 worked and installed without any problems. I did some render tests to get the Bus Interface readings correct: PCIe x16 2.0 @ x1 2.0.
Overall, installation and setup was straight forward so I moved on to do some real world tests. The only game im curious if it would run was PUBG and after installing, I got FRAPS in place and started observing the framerates .
I should have done a benchmark. I didnt expect much from this setup since I feel that the bottleneck was the i3 processor. Im planning to get an i7 Optiplex 3050 and while it has a vacant PCIe NGFF slot like the one I have, the 3050 has an m.2 slot which I think would be a better option using a GDC EXP v9. I think I also should have done a CudaZ reading but then again too late, I yanked out the SSD and placed it back into my gaming rig. Will try better next time and update this thread.