Currently Using - December 2021

This page covers what electronic devices, equipment and software I’m running right now.

What’s New?

Not too much in the way of new kit to be honest in the last six months, though there is some minor additional storage and some configuration changes to mention.

I removed a 5 year old WD Red 4TB drive from the Linux archive server, and replaced it with a 6TB Seagate IronWolf drive. I also took the opportunity to change my storage setup.

So, instead of there being 2 LVM groups, each with a 4TB drive, the remaining 4TB WD Red and the new Seagate drive are a ZFS mirror set now, which should bring some more flexibility and data integrity protection with it. That old 4TB drive found its way into the Windows desktop as the data drive for general storage, replacing an even older 2TB WD Green drive.

The only other change is an OS upgrade to the family laptop, to Windows 11. It looks nice, but aside from that, pretty much business as usual.


Dell XPS 13 (9360)

The family laptop since May 2018 (Core i5-8250U, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, UHD 620 graphics, Windows 11 Home).

Apple MacBook Air M1

An entry level M1, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD model running MacOS 11.x Big Sur, bought in April 2021.

Windows Desktop PC

My Frankenstein’s monster of a Windows box is mainly for audio and video editing, encoding, gaming and some work, and generally gets updated piecemeal.

Archive Server

Another self built machine mainly harking back to 2013, which sometimes gets new parts, and sometimes gets parts from the Windows box. It’s used for archiving files and media and is running Linux.

  • CPU: Intel Core i5 3470 (January 2013) with a Scythe Choten cooler (December 2020)
  • RAM: 16GB Corsair XMS3 (May 2013)
  • Mobo: Asus B75M-PLUS (December 2013)
  • Graphics: On CPU (headless)
  • PSU: Antec Earthwatts 450 Platinum PSU (May 2013)
  • Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (May 2013) with Scythe Flex 140 fans.
  • Discs: Samsung 840 120GB SSD (May 2013) for OS, 1 x 4TB Western Digital Red (September 2018) and 1 x 6TB Seagate IronWolf (July 2021) for personal data & 2 x 8TB Seagate Barracudas (November & December 2019) for media backups.
  • OS: Ubuntu Server 20.04.xx LTS.

Thinkpad E440

I bought one of these in mid-2014, but it had a screen hinge failure in late 2018, so I rescued the SSD, RAM, battery and PSU, and in May 2020 bought the same model on Yahoo Auctions quite cheap as the battery didn’t work, which was great for me since I could re-use my old battery, upgraded the RAM, and it’s up and running Xubuntu 20.04 LTS. (Spec is an i3-4100M, 8GB RAM, SSD).


Backups and the small amount of sync I do are both handled with SpiderOak, one of the more security focussed online backup services, since living in a wooden house in an earthquake zone does make me think about off-site backup quite a lot. Most of the things I do are text based, so I try to keep it simple, using editors like Atom for day to day and Obsidian for journalling. Photo management is mainly via digiKam and sometimes DarkTable.

I keep passwords in a KeePassXC file, and sensitive documents in VeraCrypt files.

Video editing

BlackMagic DaVinci Resolve 17.x on Windows is great for video editing, if a little overpowered for me, and I use both YouTube and Vimeo for video availability. I moved to LosslessCut for hacking away unneeded footage from my GoPro excursions.

Audio Editing

Since buying a proper microphone and audio interface, I went for Reaper as a cheap but easy to understand DAW.


This site is housed on some space at Pair Networks.


I do a lot less gaming nowadays. We currently have a Nintendo Switch and a PS4, the latter of which is mainly used as a HTPC. I also play a few games on my desktop PC now and then.

The Audio and the Visual

I have a FujiFilm X-T200 (April 2020) with the kit 15-45mm lens, a 23mm weather sealed prime and an 16-80mm travel zoom.

Currently have a GoPro 7 Black. I like to use the GoPros on the snowboard, bicycles, motorbikes and at the beaches.

In mid-2019 I indulged a long time interest in audio recording, and invested in a Rode NT1 microphone and a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 interface.


  • Google Pixel 4a smartphone (August 2020).
  • Kindle PaperWhite 2015 (September 2015).
  • Raspberry Pi’s of various generations (1-4) running various OSs.
  • Arduino Uno and other electronics kit (2013 onwards).
  • Zoom H1 audio recorder.
  • Boling BL-P1 LED light panel, essentially so I didn’t appear as a silhouette in video conferences during a few months of working from home during the 2020 COVID19 pandemic (April 2020).
  • Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones (February 2020).
  • Flexispot EQ5 Pro standing desk.