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3 out of 5 eggs Functional but not impressive 03/07/2016

This review is from: MSI Z170A TOMAHAWK AC LGA 1151 Intel Z170 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: This product has very good value, I'll give it that. Actually, I selected this motherboard at my local store because it very clearly stood out from the other stuff they had in the same price range.

I've gotten a bit jaded with motherboards lately. They used to all be so different and now they feel very samey to me. I throw in my RAM, my CPU, my GPU, plug it all in and boom it all boots up. So, yeah, the board works but it doesn’t amaze. I’d give it 3.5 if I could, for sure.

Cons: For starters the Wi-Fi card still doesn’t ship with screws. At least, I didn’t get mine. The store I got my board and CPU at include a free CPU seating when both are purchased, which doubles as a chance to see if the board will POST and proof that the CPU was installed correctly. The guy doing this noticed that the card was just loose in the box and was concerned in might fall out accidentally. Something has gone wrong in shipping and I just can’t see how someone thinks this is acceptable.

So, the antennae move around very easily because they’re not very well secured, and the Wi-Fi card doesn’t have the bracket to cover but that shouldn’t be a problem. Still, the network cuts in and out very badly and it’s less than 4 meters away from the wireless source currently. I’ll be looking into a PCI-E adapter instead of this crummy wireless card since this computer’s final destination is going to be further away than that from its wireless source (and a wire is not suitable).

Really big problem though is printed right there in the manual. “Because of chipset limitations USB optical drives are not supported” for the installation of an operating system?? Well, for whatever reason, the only USB device I could get recognized for the (re)-installation of Windows was my mouse/keyboard. I’m not going to apologize for having gotten used to being able to use a USB optical drive. The only reason I still had a SATA one is because the computer I was salvaging still had its old 5.25”. The ASUS x99 board I worked with several months back definitely didn’t have that problem.

Other Thoughts: This computer used to be a Z77 Maximus V Formula + i5-3570K platform but it died on me unfortunately. Its main purpose was a number crunching box, but there’s a chance an extra computer is going to be needed around here shortly, so I had some incentive to get this puppy up and running again. The crunching definitely benefits from an overclocked chip so I wanted something that would overclock reasonably well (not spending $500 for a board that will get me +200MHz compared to a $200 board), and I certainly got that.

I’ve said in previous reviews that I had no reason to stray away from ASUS motherboards because their price range covers all the bases and their product is always really good. Well, right now I kind of have a reason to not stray away from ASUS boards. I know I’m looking at lower end here, but I’ve used lower end ASUS boards on friends’ more budget minded builds and they have a better UEFI, more functionality / features and a more robust product. I’m kind of wishing my local store had an ASUS board in stock when I was in. Aside from the stuff I mentioned in the cons, there isn’t anything really *wrong* with the board but it’s lacking compared to what I would expect from other places. If I can bump the overclock up a bit more and the board stays alive for a few years, I’ll be satisfied.

Satisfied gets you 3/5 – 3.5/5. A solid 4 takes a bit more than I got here.


5 out of 5 eggs High quality product 01/11/2016

This review is from: RAZER DeathAdder Chroma USB Gaming Mouse

Pros: This is my first actual gaming mouse and I feel like I'm on a new planet. I will certainly never go back to a mouse that doesn't have HARDWARE-LEVEL CPI adjustment. The lighting is neat and the RBG adjustments are great because I don't really like the green.

I'm also coming off a wireless mouse which I did like, but not having to worry about recharging the batteries will be nice, and I think the wireless module was starting to fail. This is just so much more reliable and I don't really care about a cable.

This comes down to personal preference but I REALLY like not having too many buttons. The two thumb buttons are far away from where I might accidentally push them like I have on previous mice. I doubt I'll ever assign them to any controls in-game but it's nice to have at least those two if I change my mind, because they ARE quite convenient.

Again, hardware CPI adjustment up to 10,000 CPI is overkill but really nice to have.

The shape is perfect for my fingertip / palm grip. Once I'm in the zone, I forget I'm holding a mouse.

Cons: I'd like a more advanced colour control system if I'm going to pay ~$30 extra for lights. For some reason, the mouse wheel doesn't have the breathing option the palm area has, and the only other options are static or the preset spectrum shifting.

There's no way to have the spectrum only change from blue to purple, or to control the duration of the breathing (for example I don't like how the lights are OFF for a couple of seconds through each cycle). Even something as small as having static while using the PC and breathing when the monitor is off would make my day.

Other Thoughts: Aside from that, if I have any negative feelings about the mouse, it's because it's a strange mouse I haven't fully adjusted or gotten used to yet.

The mouse is a LOT lighter than what I came from (partially because it included a battery) so it almost feels "cheap" even though the quality of the mouse is far from cheap.

I'm relieved to be free from having to control the sensitivity via Windows. I also can't believe I was using pointer acceleration without knowing it. My control is now quite awful because the feel has changed completely, but I also feel like I'll be able to make real progress in my mouse accuracy as I re-train my muscle memory.

As an aside, if you're using pointer acceleration (known as "Enhance Pointer Precision" in Windows) and you have any interest in improving your skill with the mouse, just turn it off. Yeah, it'll feel like junk and you might even need to lower the sensitivity if you find it difficult to hit a very small target, but pointer acceleration makes it virtually impossible for you to develop consistency.

EVGA SuperNOVA 1000 P2 220-P2-1000-XR 80+ PLATINUM 1000W Fully Modular EVGA ECO Mode Includes FREE Power On Self Tester Power Supply
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: This is a 5.0 out of 5.

1000W of 80 Plus Platinum power is great. It has all the connectors you could possibly need and the power to keep them all fed.

The "Eco Mode" switch on the back is funny because as far as I can tell it just switches the fan curve to run be off when possible and running as slowly as possible. I wouldn't count turning off one fan as Eco-friendly but what I actually wanted on my power supply was a way to turn off the freaking fan, and there it is!

Cons: Not a single one.

Other Thoughts: I look forward to digital power supplies, or power supplies that offer some flexibility in terms of control.

For example, one feature that would be over the top would be an adjustable peripheral slot. Cover it with a warning (require a screwdriver to remove the cover, even) just to be sure. Then you've built a full fan controller right into the power supply itself.

For my own system, I have 14 fans. They're too weak at 5V but their combined noise is just a bit too much at 12V. I don't want to re-wire a Molex plug for 7V because I don't know how the PSU will react to power being fed backward into the 5V rail.

In this instance, a single peripheral port with controllable voltage would be the cherry on top.


Anonymous's Profile

Display Name: Anonymous

Date Joined: 12/20/10

  • Reviews: 48
  • Helpfulness: 28
  • First Review: 06/12/11
  • Last Review: 03/07/16
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