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Pros: It was inexpensive
Cons: Struggles with web browsing...see other thoughts...
Other Thoughts: I am using this as my "Windows 10 technical preview" box. So yes I knew I was setting myself up for some "geek" challenges...and it didn't disappoint. How ever, I have been able to get it running so it will work for Windows 10. A few tidbit’s from my lessons learned...
- As others have said, make sure your SO-DIMM ram (laptop memory) is 1.35 volt it will NOT boot on 1.5 volt memory.
- It will handle 8GB of ram just fine I used G.Skill F3-1333C9S-8GSL.
- It works well with a 2.5 inch SATA SSD. I used a Samsung 840 EVO (getting RAPID mode to work was tricky, more on that below)
- Also as others have said for a Windows 7 install, go into BIOS and change to Windows 7. Default BIOS out of the box is set for Windows 8.
- Speaking of BIOS, I updated mine, there were some weird issues with the out of the box BIOS pertaining to how it reacts after a power failure. i.e. It locks up.
- I updated my BIOS to version F7 (the latest as of this review) that was the biggest pain of all. I really had to do some web digging on that one.
- Search for “how to flash/update bios on Gigabyte Brix” Look for the one written by Rasmus and follow it step by step. You will need a USB flash drive BTW.
- Use the Windows 8 drivers if you are installing Windows 10.
I used a Samsung 840 Evo I had as a spare from a previous upgrade. I wanted to use the EVO so I could enable Rapid mode, which is another reason I went with 8GB of ram vs 4GB. Windows 10 does not like rapid mode with Samsung Magician version 4.5. If you install Magician version 4.4 (or older I used ver 4.2) rapid mode will work.
I went through all this “pain” to try and make the Brix as fast as possible.
It’s ok for basic word and spreadsheet use. It struggles with web surfing. By struggles I mean... it does work... it loads web pages at a speed about the same as a standard spinning platter (old style) hard drive. If that’s what you’re use too and haven't made the jump to an SSD I doubt you will see much difference. I have gotten spoiled by the sheer speed of how fast an SSD loads things with a “decent” hardware. I did try 3 different browsers, Chrome, Fire Fox and IE. Ironically enough. perhaps due to it being Windows 10 it had it's best performance with IE..go figure..
It also gets hot, (no fan) particularly when web surfing 63C/145F. I used the Vesa mount to give if the best airflow. It gets even hotter when sitting on its rubber feet on a table.
Bottom line even with a BIOS update, lots of memory and a speedy SSD... It’s still a small Celeron dual core processor with out a lot of power. It’s ok but not great. Like all things in the electronic world...you get what you pay for, this was cheep and has performance to match it’s price.
Pros: I put 2 of these 2TB drives into a FreeNAS box over 2 years ago (Mirror array Raid 1) the FreeNAS is on line 24/7/365. I only shut it down twice a year for about an hour to clean the dust out. It backs up 6 PC's and is used as a streaming media box. The WD Red's just keep on going.
Cons: None at all.
Other Thoughts: This is not a long "flowery" review...just a simple testament to the reliability of these drives. Using a basic unmanaged DLink SOHO gigabit switch with Cat5e cables and an Intel NIC in the FreeNAS box, I get sustained large file transfer speed of 110 Mbps.
I have always preferred Western Digital drives. I use them in all my builds for mass storage. WD's are like my Toyota Camry, they just run!!
This review is from: EVERCOOL EC7025SH12BP 70mm Case Fan
Pros: The stock CPU fan on my FX-4100 was squealing, so it was time to replace it before it failed completely. I had to do a lot of searching to find a good 4 wire (PWM) replacement. I installed this one and its working a little better than the stock fan.
Cons: It is a little louder than the stock fan, you can hear the RPM's increase with the CPU load....(but hey at least I know its working) I am betting that's because its moving more air. I view this as very minor and it really doesn't bother me.
Other Thoughts: I ordered another one as a spare... I have built a lot of AMD's with stock CPU fans in the past year...it cant hurt to have a spare.READ FULL REVIEW
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