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ICY DOCK MB994SK-1B ToughArmor 4 x 2.5
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Nice all metal construction and this is the locking version so you can't accidently push the front tab and eject the drives. Install was simple and it fit 5.25" slot perfectly.
I'm using this with 4 Samsung 850 EVO 1TB drives in raid 0 to have a 4TB drive used for a number of VMware VM's that are doing continuous builds for software development.

Cons: This would be a GREAT unit if it had good fans - but alas - they put in lower quality fans. Combo ball / sleeve bearing and they are simply not quiet at all. If you have this in a rack system where you don't care about noise - then the noise is not much of an issue but from the sounds I am starting to hear - I don't think the lifespan of these is that great. Come on Icy Dock - for something like this unit - users will pay the extra $10 to have better fans - heck I have $1800 in drives installed so I would pay a bit more to have high quality fans that are not so loud.

I ended up purchasing from Digi-Key a couple of OD4010-12LB fans and putting them in myself (and thus voiding the warranty but I'm ok with that). Much better - virtually quiet.

Other Thoughts: The locking mechanism is not for security - it is just to prevent accidental removal of a drive. Anyone with the smallest of tools or a key could force the tab open (bending the tab and making that tray unusable) so consider what your application is. But this is better than other units that have plastic locks.

Again - if it came with better fans - 5 eggs. If you don't need heavy usage then consider this 4 eggs. But the fans supplied are simply not up for 24/7. The ones I replaced it with are rated for about 7 years of 24/7 usage but I did have to do some simple soldering - which to me is no big deal.

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EDUP  Mini 300M 300Mbps USB WiFi Wireless N LAN Network Adapter 802.11 n/g/b EP-N1570
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

2 out of 5 eggs Careful - it runs right at the USB specs 11/29/2013

This review is from: EDUP Mini 300M 300Mbps USB WiFi Wireless N LAN Network Adapter 802.11 n/g/b EP-N1570

Pros: When it work, it works (see my cons below).
Good price and small.

It is a RealTek 8192CU device (not 8192SU). Both Win 7 and win 8/8.1 will autoload the latest drivers.

Cons: The unit runs right at the USB specs which is why folks are having a hit/miss experience with it. It's too close to specs to count on it. For the price, it is not worth it for me to return, so I'll keep it around just in case I need a usb wireless knowing that I need to use a power hub to count on its correct operation.

So I'll be purchasing a different USB wireless adapter.

Other Thoughts: The reviews for this have been hit/miss. I spent a couple of hours with it trying to track down why a brand new win 8.1 build would not connect but see my wireless network, while other machines will see it.

Your experience with it will depend on your motherboard chip set or if you are using a power hub. If you have the device connected to a powered hub - you are golden - it will work fine.
BUT if you are plugging it into the port of a laptop or the back/front ports of a desktop - then you may or may not have a working device. The unit pulls power right near the USB spec. If your ports are not providing enough power, it will see your network but be unable to connect. For example, of the 8 ports in a brand new ASROCK H81M-ITX build, 3 of the ports allow it two work (1 usb 3, 2 usb 2), the other 5 ports all fail to connect. But if it is connected to a powered hub, that hub can be connect to any port and work. I tested with two laptops, an older IBM T61P and two ports work for it, but one does not. In a docking station, all back ports work. The other laptop is an HP 8540w. On this unit 1 USB port does not support it, but 2 other ports do. Tested with an MSI H81M-P33 motherboard system, in there 4 ports work, 4 ports do not. In all cases, using a powered hub allows it to work correctly in every port.

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PowerColor AX7950 3GBD5-2DHV5E Radeon HD 7950 3GB 384-Bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: What more can you say - the prices of 7950's has dropped fast giving amazing graphics power for low prices.

Do you have an older graphics board but have been holding off - now may be the time to upgrade.

Thinking about a 27" 1440p monitor? This card will let you game at 2560 x 1440.

This is a boost version of the card. Just grab the latest drivers from AMD, install them instead of the ones on the CD, go into the Catalyst control panel, Performance tab, turn on the graphics overdrive - no need to change any other settings. Now this will spin up to 925 Mhz with 1250Mhz clock depending on thermal load. And if you are an OC'er, have fun.

This is slightly different version of the one that Toms Hardware reviewed. Advantages of this card is mainly quieter fans, but it does run a tad hotter than some other versions. But if you want lower temps, you can manually adjust the fan curve by either the catalyst control panel or install the PowerCooler utility to run the fan faster - with more noise.

The card is quiet, not bad even at full load. When idle at the desktop, the fans are very quiet.

So far I'm loving how this runs at 2560x1440 in the games that matter to me.

Cons: Slightly higher temps but that is due to the cooling solution. It does not blow the hot air outside - that would matter to those that do not have a nice airflow through their case.

3GB video memory is overkill with most of todays games, but this gives you years of viable gaming as games start to push over 2GB due to the new consoles coming out.

Other Thoughts: I have been holding of from upgrading my graphics card for a LONG time. I was running crossfire 4870's from many years ago. But AMD no longer upgrades the drivers for that legacy hardware, and I was sick of the "studdering" from the crossfire. I recently upgraded to a nice 27" 1440p monitor and those 4870's simply did not have the muscle to run at native resolutions with good quality. This bad boy was just the ticket and I'm glad I finally waited until the prices dropped under $200. This card was less than either of the 4870's I bought back then.

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Jack B.'s Profile

Display Name: Jack B.

Date Joined: 03/10/03

  • Reviews: 31
  • Helpfulness: 16
  • First Review: 12/10/10
  • Last Review: 03/26/15
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