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This review is from: NETGEAR Orbi RBK50 High-Performance AC3000 Tri-Band Home WiFi System
Pros: Super simple to use!
Coolest looking router I've used!
Expandable with ease!
Beats apple airports hands down!
Honestly, how many "routers" have you seen that you can place and actually look like some sort of art or something? Normally they are bulky or ugly antenna etc. etc. These suckers you can sneak just about any place and they fit right in. Hardest part is deciding how to try to hide the power wire to make it even more stealth hah.
Cons: I wish that it had 1 more network port. They seemed to have removed one (maybe due to size) but could it have not been stacked maybe? For most people today this isn't a problem as everyone is going wireless. In my case I use both a lot.
Wish it supported the faster AC speeds but for what speed internet we get in the US, this works perfect!
Other Thoughts: I've had family ask me about these things who are big apple fans. They are amazed at how simple they are and the fact that I can expand them easily. What's more is apple recently announced getting out of the WiFi market. Netgear seems to be the only one filling the gap with the super simple products!
Out the door it lacked a few features but they are doing firmware updates like crazy to put those in and improve things.
Overall I'd totally buy these!
That said, I did get mine free so that I could do an unbiased review. Free or paid I rate the same, honestly.
Initially I think the price (they sell for) is a bit steep but when you really think about this bundle you get two units it's actually fair IMO. I actually hope they implement the way these work into all netgear routers. It would be cool to just plug any netgear in and ability to sync them all up in case I wanted some fancy ones for other reasons.
Pros: Has HDMI 2.0, USB 3.1 and a M.2 for PCIe SSD.
8-pin CPU power header (most of these itx ones are 4...)
Cons: Bios freezes a lot. It seemed to be fixed when I upgraded to 1.5 bios, but now 1.6 is out and I upgraded to that and it's back to freezing in the bios. Mouse moves still but you can't click anything and the time "looks" frozen even, though the system isn't really froze... Takes me 30 seconds to reproduce this, how can you not catch in QA???
Why would you put an OLD PCIe mini half slot for the WiFi and use an old WiFi card also? I wanted a WiFi card that supports Wave 2 features so had to by an m.2 converter that JUST fit. I am probably taking some sort of performance hit doing this too I imagine. I also had to replace the antennas wires (but not antenna) because the newer M.2 style WiFi cards use different ones.
In all, I had to spend about $10 in adapter parts plus $50 for a different WiFi card to get something decent. I could have gotten a cheaper WiFi card like the newest Intel one but I wanted wave2 AC and that didn't leave many options so I put a killer 1535 in.
For the "premium" quality this board appears to be this is my MAIN complaint that they skimped out on. If this has a M.2 E key slot instead and like the intel wifi card this thing would be perfect... I wouldn't have bothered replacing the WiFi probably at that point.
Oh the m.2 ones also have the better and newer bluetooth so this results in this board being EOL as far as WiFi/BT card support. So while we may be able to upgrade RAM, CPU, GPU etc. your removable wifi card is EOL and old...
The funny part is all it required for them to do right is just a different plug, no different chips or anything, just the plastic plug and the leads...
Other Thoughts: My first one came with the antenna header bent back. Had to RMA it back to newegg which is a pain since they don't cross ship. They offer to refund and let you re-order but that would have resulted in me losing a promo I used...
I was looking for an ITX build for a while. I really wanted a board that had 2 network adapters and supported 4k @ 60Hz but no board with both exists. So that left me looking at ones with 4k @ 60Hz and other decent components. Well I thought I'd found one but turns out a lot of the other boards don't have the 8-pin power for the CPU and funny those are the same ones people are complaining about CPU throttle on, plus I wanted to use a good CPU, 6700k so wanted to to know it had good power... so I went with this one. First time with ASRock and I can say it looks like good quality.
Overall it's a decent board, especially if you don't care for the wifi which they really cheaped out on. The bios is a little buggy as well but the system seems stable and runs good. Hopefully bios update fixes buggy bios and the WiFi card, well I knew what I was getting into and didn't really have a choice end of the day for a good system that would take an m.2 ssd and have 8pin cpu power etc. Just annoying is all. The board seems soo good and high quality and they did that... It probably had 0 cost difference too considering m.2 E key and pcie mini can use adapters to use same cards even that are chipless lol.
Pros: They just worked, no issues. Set bios to XMP profile and all settings are correct.
Cons: The price dropped a good amount after I ordered them before I even got them. Newegg doesn't pricematch everything and hassle of return to re-buy is stupid so I just ate it.
Other Thoughts: These days you want the fastest ram you can afford but one thing people fail to pay much attention to is the voltage. Yes a few faster sticks may exist but they are 1.35v. The higher voltage on the ram is actually not good for the CPU.
I wanted stock ram voltage of 1.2v but also the best latency and speed I could get while doing that for a 16GB stick and these are perfect.
Every other stick had either slower MHz or worse latency at 1.2v.
I'm sure you can probably overclock these more and even run them up to the 1.35v okay like other sticks but I rather not put excess strain on the CPU and components. I am an overclocker but I like to push as far as I can on stock voltages for longevity and heat reduction.
I am running 2x16GB sticks in my itx build for a total of 32GB @ 15-15-15 2666MHz 1.2v and a 6700k running at stock voltage at 4.5GHz (it could go higher but no need).