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5 out of 5 eggs Perfect overclocking and test bed motherboard 01/26/2016

This review is from: GIGABYTE GA-Z97X-SOC Force LGA 1150 Intel Z97 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Very stable while overclocking (I know that most of it has to do with the components but there are motherboards that I have tried that you can't get very far where as this board can). All the overclocking buttons you could ever need right on the board. Orange theme is a no-brainer as it stands out from the crowd (plus this shade or orange is my favorite color). Switches to turn off each individual PCIe x16 slot. Ability to turn off each memory channel (see cons). A physically stiff board that doesn't flex like a lot of ASRock boards do. Plenty of room around CPU for large heatsinks. Works just as well being used as an everyday motherboard.

Cons: Memory switch only turns off each memory channel and not each individual slot. BLCK + increases by a factor of 2 but BLCK - decreases by a factor of 1. OC PEG connector is behind the I/O connectors and as such no way to hide it.SATA Express has yet to be fully utilized.

Other Thoughts: Currently I am running an i3-4130 3.4GHz @ 4.0GHz via BLCK increase. I am also running an EVGA 2x4GB kit at 3000MHz 14-16-16-40-1T @ 1.65V. I've ran stress tests for 24 hours straight to make sure everything is good and so far no issues have come up. If you're looking for a motherboard that will allow you to overclock to your hearts content, then grab one of these when you can.

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ZOTAC GeForce GTX 980 Ti 6GB
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

3 out of 5 eggs Works perfect, though a little concerning 11/04/2015

This review is from: ZOTAC GeForce GTX 980 Ti 6GB

Pros: Works exactly like it should. True boost clock is the same as my reference ASUS 980ti.

Cons: Runs quite a bit hotter than my first reference 980ti, even on its own. Possibly received a refurbished or used card.

Other Thoughts: My concerns about this card are as follows:
-Screws holding the cooler on (not the 4 with the springs) look like they have been slightly stripped
-There is evidence that a tamper-proof sticker was at one time on one of the 4 heatsink screws but has since been rubbed off
-GPU had enough thermal compound to be used on 2 1/2 GPUs

I don't know whether I received a refurbished or used card but either way after replacing the thermal compound everything works to my liking as a second card in a SLI setup. I am just concerned about the real reason why it looks used even though everything else points to new.

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Phanteks Evolv PH-ES515E_AG Anthracite Gray Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Beautifully crafted case that's simple yet stylish. Large unobstructed interior makes building easier. Grommets are in just the right places for clean cable management. Side panels are hinged at the rear and swing outward and can then be lifted off. Even with a side panel window the 3mm thick aluminium panel doesn't flex like most do. 2 SSD and 2 HDD mounts are hidden under the PSU cover keeping the interior clean looking. 5 (3 included) removable SSD/HDD hanging trays can be mounted inside for additional storage capacity. Top fan/radiator bracket slides out making installation easier. More than enough space and mounting points for large radiators. Multiple places for mounting pumps and reservoirs. Front comes off by pulling from the bottom plate revealing a large removable dist filter which has a handle.

Cons: Side window isn't tinted like the mATX and windowed iTX versions are. Plastic I/O panel clips break easily, though not really a con as it actually looks better with it off. Only supports up to 3 dual-slot graphics cards.

Other Thoughts: I got this as a review case and as such it is a pre-production model so there are some issues with it such as the front SSD tray mounting being a bit tighter than it should be and the top fan/radiator bracket being a bit more snug that preferred. Aside from these minor issues this case is perfect. It's as good looking as it if functional and I would not hesitate to order more just for the sake of having them. This case does NOT disappoint.

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E-Cycle L.'s Profile

Display Name: E-Cycle L.

Date Joined: 12/04/12

  • Reviews: 55
  • Helpfulness: 21
  • First Review: 12/10/12
  • Last Review: 01/26/16
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