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TP-LINK TL-WA850RE 300Mbps Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender. Wi-Fi Booster
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert

4 out of 5 eggs Great easy way to extend wifi range 02/10/2016

This review is from: TP-LINK TL-WA850RE 300Mbps Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender. Wi-Fi Booster

Pros: Easy to setup, works well, fast for what it is.

Not a lot to say, it does what it's supposed to do at a price point that is very competitive with a 2 year warranty to provide peace of mind.
If you need 802.11ac speeds you have to spend a lot more, but short of online competitive gaming you really don't. Streaming HD video over this works just fine, which is probably the most taxing thing most people ever do.

Cons: Doesn't support latest 802.11ac standards. Increased latency means it isn't the best thing for competitive online gaming.

Included ethernet cable is 3ft shorter than I think it should be.

Other Thoughts: Basically the way this device works is really simple. You plug it into an outlet within' range of your wifi and it extends that range. You have to connect it to the wifi router of course, but this is made very easy to do.

Unit has an Ethernet port built in! This is great!

Note: This device should be plugged directly into the outlet, NOT a power strip!
Now, I think this recommendation is more for the powerline models, since that's literally transferring your network traffic over the power lines in your house. But it could be that it is also recommended for this model, though I'm not sure why. Could be something as simple as antenna orientation.

WD 2TB White My Passport Ultra Portable External Hard Drive - USB 3.0 - WDBBKD0020BWT-NESN
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

3 out of 5 eggs Good drive unless there's an accident 10/21/2015

This review is from: WD 2TB White My Passport Ultra Portable External Hard Drive - USB 3.0 - WDBBKD0020BWT-NESN

Pros: This is a 2.5" external hard drive from Western Digital, arguably the best hard drive manufacturer there is. This drive supports a very high level of encryption so if you're storing sensitive data where security is a big concern this is what you want to look for.

If security isn't a realistic concern for you, or you know you won't want to enter a password every time you want to access your device, then you can get similar drives without the encryption and save yourself some money.

It's small, looks modern and is easy to use. WD includes free software and diagnostic tools for their drives which can be very helpful.

3 year warranty, much longer than most external hard drives.

Cons: In order to make the enclosure as small as possible they remove the standard I/O board from the hard drive. What this means is, basically, that you can't take the hard drive out of it's case and put it in a computer. Now, it's an external drive so that's fine, right? Wrong. If anything happens to the drive, if it fails in any way you won't be able to recover the data off the drive. If the USB port gets damaged in any way, you won't be able to access the information on the drive. Could be from falling
or something as simple as accidentally leaning on the USB cable damaging the pins.

When external hard drives fail what you do to recover the data is remove it from the case and connect it to a computer with a SATA to USB adapter and then run your
recovery suite. This is also how you recover data from an external drive with broken USB port. This lack of ability to troubleshoot is a big problem and a deal breaker for me.
It's an external hard drive, it's primary purpose is to BACKUP data. If the backup isn't reliable then it's useless. If it can't be recovered in a failure then it isn't reliable.

In fairness, as long as the USB port is undamaged you can still attempt to recover data from a failed drive. However recovery of data from a crashed hard drive is an inconsistent procedure, it's less reliable over USB than it is over SATA. Those internal headers are really important!

Let me be very clear, if anything happens to that USB port EVERYTHING on that drive is gone forever. That is an unacceptable risk.

Other Thoughts: Performance of this drive isn't spectacular but it isn't bad either, it's exactly average.

My average read speeds were 78MB/s. Average write speeds were 62MB/s transferring 138GB consisting of every file type imaginable.

There are faster drives out there.

Seagate still makes external drives with the internal headers intact, so I strongly recommend looking at their product offerings.

I want to give this drive 1 star because of the removal of internal headers, but the likelihood of one of these "catastrophic failures" is low enough that doesn't seem fair.

I'm giving it 3 stars because this drive is incredibly average. The company, support and software is spectacular, which would make it 5 stars. But then the lack of internal headers brings us back down to 3 stars, wiping out the advantage WD brings just by being WD.

Mushkin Enhanced ECO2 2.5
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Very good value for the price. Though I do think there are better options available. 2 Million MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) is very good. Combined with a 3 year warranty this SSD should provide plenty of piece of mind for the buyer. It's well made is competitive in performance in this price range.
Compared to some smaller SSD's I have used and had available for testing this drive is pretty fast. Compared to the 256GB class drive that was in my desktop it's on average about 50% faster and has an access time 1/4 as long, which is very good! Although, for some reason, maximum transfer speeds were lower. This isn't very important however as "max" transfer speeds don't really mean anything in the real world, so just focus on "50% faster", which is the average.

Cons: Slower than some other offerings in the same price range. Random IOPS are lower than I would like, specifically Sandisks offering is superior in this area, as well as sequential performance.
Random Input Output operations per Second (IOPS) is an important metric when choosing an SSD. Basically the higher this is the more responsive your computer will be and the better it will be at multi-tasking. Random IOPS is more important that sequential IO, sadly, this drive is not the fastest in either.

For very little money you can get the ADATA Premier Pro which will be faster in every way, same warranty just faster and more stable.

Other Thoughts: Vision Tek 240GB 64kb block size
Minimum: 150MB/s Maximum: 420MB/s Average: 237MB/s Access: .204ms
Mushkin 480GB 64kb block size
Minimum: 271MB/s Maximum: 374MB/s Average: 353MB/s Access: .067ms
Mushkin 240GB mSATA 64kb block size
Minimum: 105MB/s Maximum: 318MB/s Average: 196MB/s Access: .291ms

This isn't a bad drive, and let's be clear, it will blow any mechanical disk completely out of the water. I am happy enough with it I will probably leave it in my computer for a few years.

However there are superior alternatives available for the same, or marginally more, money. Sandisk has an offering that comes to mind specifically.

For only marginally more money I believe anyone in the market for a good SSD would be better served by the ADATA Premier Pro.


Brian S.'s Profile

Display Name: Brian S.

Date Joined: 07/31/06

  • Reviews: 48
  • Helpfulness: 26
  • First Review: 09/22/07
  • Last Review: 02/10/16
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