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Seagate Barracuda ST3750525AS 750GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: Works good. Installed in a new HTPC as my main drive. This HD gave me the standard 5.9 rating in Win 7 64 bit. Appears to be Seagate reliable. It looked brand new. I'm happy.

Cons: None.

ASRock N3700-ITX Intel Quad-Core Pentium Processor N3700 (up to 2.4 GHz) Mini ITX Motherboard/CPU Combo
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

5 out of 5 eggs I will buy another, this is the new HTPC standard 09/12/2015

This review is from: ASRock N3700-ITX Intel Quad-Core Pentium Processor N3700 (up to 2.4 GHz) Mini ITX Motherboard/CPU Combo

Pros: Win 7-64 bit test scores are: CPU=6.4, Mem=7.1, Aero=4.8, Graphics=6.2, HD=5.9. The onboard graphics will take your breath away, they are outstanding and the audio is superb. For a quiet HTPC this is MB clearly sets the new standard. I disabled Aero in Win 7 and this MB zips through the OS with plenty of snap. I used 8 GB of 3 year old normal PC3=10700 mh memory and everything works fine in the memory department. CPUID reports this CPU does indeed have the VT-X, MMX and AES instruction set. This MB operates with a 5 to 30 multiplier on the 80 MHz buss. My machine idles/naps at 480 MHz and gets up to normal operating speed of 1020 or 1600 MHz instantly at the first keystroke. Under moderate to heavy loads this MB jumps to 2400 MHz with ease and stays there with no hiccups. In the bios you can choose Economy, Normal or Sport (fast high performance) modes. I chose Sports mode. My unit came with the 1.20 bios. All the drivers installed nicely. All 4 cores work fine and this system zips along perfectly. I like having 4 USB3.0 ports on the back and a USB3.0 connection port on the MB.

Cons: I agree in large part with David M on his review of this motherboard. The onboard LAN is just passable, not even close to outstanding. I added a PCIe Rosewill gigabyte PCIe 1x card to this setup to use as my main connection to the Internet. Heat is definitely a small problem on this board. After a CPUID stress test and shutdown the MB would not boot up as some headstrong heat sensor was not allowing the computer to fire up for 15 minutes. I added a small 2" fan to the CPU heat sink. The CPU never goes over 30 C now and rebooting is no problem. My machine won't boot up if the DP and DVI ports are both connected to active monitors. I have to disconnect the DP unit to get this machine to boot. NewEgg sold an Open Box unit to me, fortunately it worked but when I pay for a new unopened box then I want a new unopened box. period. The HDMI port is too close to the DVI port and if your cable connectors are overly fat (with added plastic for good grips) then you won't be able to have both cables connected. I have a HDMI-to-VGA adapter that won't seat on the MB back because of the overhang from the DVI plug immediately next to the HDMI port.

Other Thoughts: Installing Win 7 64bit on this MB is a huge challenge owing to the fact none of the USB ports will become active during the installation without the kludge Azrock USB patch installed. I did not use the patch, I resurrected an old PS2 mouse and keyboard alternately switching them on the one PS2 port to finally get through the installation of Win 7 from a DVD drive. USB keyboards and mice will not work during a fresh Win 7 install.

SAMSUNG 850 EVO M.2 250GB SATA III Internal SSD Single Unit Version MZ-N5E250BW
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

4 out of 5 eggs It is a trade off on MB functionality 04/26/2015

This review is from: SAMSUNG 850 EVO M.2 250GB SATA III Internal SSD Single Unit Version MZ-N5E250BW

Pros: Easy to install. Very reliable. Fast. I installed it directly onto the motherboard.

Cons: When you install this M2 SSD on a Black & White MSI Z97S motherboard you will forfeit the use of two SATA III ports. The trade-off for a "faster-is-better" 1-2 micro-second improvement in 10gb/sec data access speed is not worth the trade off for reduced functionality by losing 2 of the 6 SATA ports. Sometimes it is fun to keep one step ahead of the Joneses in new gadgets like this, but not at the cost of losing 2 perfectly good SATA ports. Had I bought a regular 6gb/sec SSD instead I would not have noticed the difference in how fast my Excel spreadsheet loaded.


Michael F.'s Profile

Display Name: Michael F.

Date Joined: 05/29/07

  • Reviews: 57
  • Helpfulness: 23
  • First Review: 06/22/10
  • Last Review: 09/27/15
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