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This review is from: CORSAIR Voyager Slider 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive Model CMFSL3B-32GB
Pros: ~Rubberized grip. Makes it easy to remove (but not actually any easier to insert since you would be pushing opposite direction of the slider doing this method.)
~Better than USB 2.0 performance
~Fair price for 32 GB of storage space
Cons: ~Mediocre transfer speeds for a USB 3.0 device (see Other Thoughts)
~Plastic feels flemsy. I could probably break the case apart with my hands with medium effort. An impact from a heavy object would most likey shatter the case.
~Activity LED is very bright and distracting if the device is in plain view. While connected to my TV as a media device, I cannot stop staring at the blinking blue strobe light burning my retinas. You cannot disable this LED.
~Formatted space is about 1GB less than my other comparable 32GB flash devices
~No lanyard included
Other Thoughts: For the propeller heads, here's my shakedown for performance on four various USB 3.0 flash drives, a USB 2.0 flash drive, in addition to a HDD and SSD using a USB3.0 interface cable for comparison purposes:
-Corsair Voyager 32GB USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 82.8 MB/s
Min Transfer = 54.0 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 66.9 MB/s
-Corsair Survivor 32GB USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 79.8 MB/s
Min Transfer = 79.2 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 79.5 MB/s
-HP/PNY X702W 32GB USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 95.8 MB/s
Min Transfer = 90.7 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 94.0 MB/s
-ADATA S102 16GB USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 116.4 MB/s
Min Transfer = 115.4 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 116.2 MB/s
-PNY Attaché 8GB USB2.0-
Max Transfer = 24.3 MB/s
Min Transfer = 9.3 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 20.7 MB/s
-Seagate Momentus HDD 320GB 5400rpm USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 75.3 MB/s
Min Transfer = 35.8 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 59.7 MB/s
-PNY XLR8 SSD 120GB USB3.0-
Max Transfer = 184.0 MB/s
Min Transfer = 138.2 MB/s
Avg Transfer = 156.3 MB/s
In summary, do not buy this flash drive if you are looking for true USB 3.0 performance. It's just not here. However, it does perform better than a USB 2.0 device of equivalent size, so at least it's not a complete dud on the performance scale.
Benchmarks compiled using HD Tune Free v2.55. All benchmarks performed using the same USB 3.0 port on an ASRock Z68 Extreme 3 motherboard and Windows 7 SP1 x64. Drives formatted using FAT32 system and maximum block size of 64Kb. I did not benchmark on USB 2.0 as that would create a bottleneck not defined by the flash drive's limitations (like test driving a sports car at half throttle).
Thanks to Newegg.com and Corsair for providing the review sample.
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This review is from: SteelSeries Flux In-Ear Mobile 3.5mm Connector Canal Headset
Pros: - Decent passive noise isolation (I wouldn't call it noise cancellation because these aren't actively cancelling anything) thanks to the snug fit cups
- Flat cord design prevents a lot of tangles and twists
- Integrated microphone and control switch makes this a very versatile headset for two-way communication
- Good audio quality once you get the right size cups fitted. Otherwise, you will have a complete loss of mid and bass frequencies
Cons: - HORRIBLE MICRO-PHONICS!! (This is the sound transmitted to your ear by mechanical vibrations when the headset cord is making contact with solid object)
- Carry pouch is somewhat small. Have to cram the headset into the pouch which takes is fairly difficult unless you tie-wrap the cord first (no integrated tie-wrap on the cord, so carry a bread-tie in the pouch with you)
- No way to secure the headset to your person or clothing during activities like jogging, biking. Also, not enough cord length from the V split to your ears to allow for looping the cord over your ears
Other Thoughts: I decided to give these a try for a variety of tasks while on the road. The first thing I noticed was the incredible amount of noise transferred from the cord banging around or “micro-phonics.” Typically, headphones will have a shirt-clip or be long enough to wrap the cord around your ear to minimize the effect. Neither was true in this case. Using these headphones while running or riding a bike was almost unbearable, not to mention I couldn't keep them from falling out of my ear regardless of which interchangeable tip I used. The flat cord was a nice feature though, since it minimized tangling. Moving on to music, I’m the kind of guy who believes a good headset will really add to the sound. These headphones did a decent job of noise isolation, which allowed me to hear a decent range of highs and lows.
After making several phone calls, I can say that I had no problem hearing or speaking into the microphone which fell conveniently near my mouth. The callers were sometimes able to tell when I was wearing them and could pick up on the road-noise while driving in my car, but it was not unbearable. Lastly, since these headphones are advertised for “gaming,” I was excited to put them to the test. From the short length of the cord, I can only assume the manufacturer meant they were for gaming on a laptop. Just like when listening to music, the in-ear microphones did a decent job of noise isolation, but that’s about it for the positives.
As an avid PC gamer and music lover, I’ve tried numerous sets of headphones but I confess that I prefer the full sized around-ear headsets. My overall opinion is that if you are going to invest this kind of money and willing to forgo the portability, you’re better off getting a good entry level full-size headset or just stick with using the earbuds that came with your mobile device.
This review is from: SteelSeries Siberia v2 Full-Size Headset Heat Orange Edition
Pros: The standard USB drivers are built into the headset, so they should just be plug-n-play on your Windows device. I did not have any issues getting some basic audio into and out of this headset.
The “heat orange” LED illumination is kind of exciting at first. With the built-in drivers, the LEDs glow brightly and make the headset really stand out. They definitely give a red hot glowing effect as the LEDs are behind a honeycomb mesh that resembles a glass stovetop turned up to full power.
The downloadable USB drivers and software utility allow you to choose some preset equalizer settings that do actually bring out the audio fairly well. Music sounded more vibrant on that preset, and voice chat stood out very well from other sounds using the voice equalizer preset. You can also create a SteelSeries Cloudsync account which would allow you to carry your custom configurations with you if you jump around to various PCs… I didn’t actually find this practical but you might. The SteelSeries control panel allows you to set the LEDs for either always on or off, breathe mode, or pulse (to audio).
The overall build quality is not bad, but since everything is plastic I feel I must be a little delicate when tossing the headset onto my desk or into my bag.
I have no complaints about the audio quality. I enjoyed listening to music, watching movies, and playing games with the Siberia V2. The equalizer presets came in handy. The hard switch for the microphone was handy during gaming to avoid transmitting when speaking to someone nearby.
Cons: This is going to be a slightly longer list than the Pros I mentioned above…
My biggest complaint is the lack of support for 3.5mm only devices. Therefore I still need a separate headset when traveling with my Droid phone and iPad only.
While I did enjoy the LED light effects at first, I found myself turning them off in public. I am nearly 30 years old, and getting funny looks from people around me in public was a little awkward.
The headset is rather large and not incredibly adjustable. They just did not fit snugly on my head and I continuously was adjusting them back into position. Also, the ear cups are rather poor at blocking outside noises. Nearby conversations can easily bleed through into your audio.
Being that the Siberia V2 is USB driven, if you disconnect the headset while running an application, you may have to kill said application and relaunch it to regain audio. Also, if you plug in the headset after you've already launched an application, it may not detect the new audio device, and you’ll have to manually switch to it and set it as the default device. An issue not typically seen with using a 3.5mm device.
While gaming with this headset, I had complaints from fellow gamers that my mic audio sounded “thin” or “hollow”. I interpreted this to mean that the treble was much higher than the mid and bass levels, but there was not much that I could do for them. This was probably caused by the built-in noise-cancelling feature.
I would really have liked a travel bag included with this headset or at least a way to manage the cables without tying them into a knot!
Other Thoughts: At the time of this review, the SteelSeries Siberia V2 Heat Orange was priced at $79.99. For that price, I would personally keep shopping, but that doesn't mean to rule out SteelSeries altogether. I believe this headset does represent the excellent build quality that this company is capable of, but this model just doesn't have the features that I am looking for as a 30-YO part-time gamer with many different tech devices and a busy travel schedule.
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Thank you to Newegg.com and SteelSeries for the review sample.