Dedicated Pain Cave PC

Do the NUCs come ready to go out of the box? I always thought you had to add a hard drive and operating system.

I use an ipad now. No group workouts or live FTP on ramp test with ipad.

TR is working on this.
Soon-ish there will be some kind of group wo outside of PC.

Most NUCs doesnt have HD.

have you try ?
they sell used computers. And some are very small.

The one I linked comes with 120GB SSD and Win 10 Pro.

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Does TR work on Chromebooks? If so, does group workouts also work?

An alternative to a PC - I run Zwift on an Apple TV and TR on my phone (separately, not together). The Apple TV doubles as my entertainment streaming device. I originally went to this “temporary” setup with the long term plan of going to a dedicated PC to run Zwift but then never saw the need as the Apple TV works well. I never bothered to ever plug in my laptop again either which is how I had run TR for years.

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I’v decided to do the Zwift thing, so I’m getting a low end gaming PC. Dell, around $1,000 from Amazon. It will be here on Sunday. Would have been a little cheaper top buy directly from Dell, but I’m not good at waiting.

I expect this setup to give me ultra detail at 4k with high fps even when there are lots of people around.

My current laptop runs Z fine at 1080, but the graphics are far more interesting when I run it on my desktop in 4k. One of the things that gets a little buried in the discussion of Z graphics is that you can pick the resolution (1080, 4k, whateve), but Z decides your level of detail based on the available graphics card. There are some ways to tinker with the lower end detail decisions, but if you want to run ultra (and NOT everyone does or cares), you have to have a setup that Z likes.

Yes, there are many cheaper ways to do this. By all accounts, Apple TV is great for 1080.


Both Apple TV and most phones use Bluetooth, so how do you connect both to your smart trainer? Thanks!

Surprisingly, that is on sale from Dell Canada for only $1100 so not too far off your USD price (it’s on sale for $500 off), hmm… :thinking:

I don’t run both at the same time so its not an issue for me. Its one or the other and it works fine if you don’t try and run both at the same time - the trainer just pairs with whatever app is open.

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Ah, I see, just assumed you were running both at the same time. Okay then! Ride on :wink:

Never mind…I didn’t read the replies before.

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I second the suggestion of the Intel NUC, which is a great small-form-factor PC.

Places will sell you prebuilts. “Prebuilt” here means “we plugged in an M.2 SSD and installed Windows 10 on it”.


I’ve had good luck with prebuilt systems from PowerSpec over the past few years, something to look into if you have a Micro Center nearby. They’re generally built with off the shelf parts at a price that’s hard to beat if you built it yourself. Not always the best component selection, but better than the oddball OEM parts you often see from the big brands. The software is clean too, only giveaway is a custom splash screen.

Trainerroad on the phone. Apple TV for Zwift. Works very well.

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Skip to the Budget Addendum of this article:

TLDR: buy an inexpensive small form factor business PC and a low profile graphics card.

Zwift performance (I don’t know much about RGT performance) is mostly determined by the graphics card and to a lesser extent single-core performance. You don’t need anything crazy to run it, just a decent graphics card.

I like NUCs, but you aren’t going to get the graphics performance you want unless you go with the gaming version ($$$) or get an eGPU as you’ll be relying on the integrated graphics. The business PC would be much less expensive. I was considering a HP SFF business PC off Amazon for $250 and a graphics card. Zwift in 4k is crazy, so if you want to go that route invest a little more in the graphics card. But beware, if you go 4k you will never want to go back.


Did exactly this a few months back. I grew up building PCs but 25 years later I don’t have the time or patience to mess about building my own system. I wanted something in a box, with a warranty, that worked. And all it took was 45 minutes from picking one online, driving to the store to purchase, to having it setup on my desk ready to install in the Lama Lab. That was worth $100s in my time not messing about. (I’d rather mess about wasting time on my bike…)

I went with a HP Omen Gaming PC w/ NVidia RTX 2060 (Amazon US link:

It /was/ overkill at the time. Then I started streaming (GPU encoding). Now I’m using RTX Voice for both input and output audio (again, GPU encoding). Going big was well worth it. I’ll even go a 3050 GPU upgrade when they’re around.

The biggest hassle was the new 4K TV to make use of this beast… Finding a screen with low HDMI input lag was something I didn’t factor in. Samsung 50″ RU7100 4K LED TV was the price friendly option there.




@GPLama so this is what’s running all the route badge live streams? Is it also doing all the “show your iphone” stuff at the same time? Definitely overkill for me right now, but pretty impressive nonetheless.

Yep. That’s all the HP Omen system + OBS Studio + some funky configs and capture cards. I’ve covered most of the setup over on YouTube. I’m now bringing in Discord video chats with others that works well. Mrs Lama and DCRainmaker made an appearance on the first test. Their audio worked well when pushed though the RTX filter.