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Pros: *EVGA free included software offers a program to monitor your card and adjust super clocking. Can set custom fan speed, even to match card temperature. + more!
*GREAT value. recommended for most gamers wanting maximum graphics settings, but doesn't want to pay too much.
*(see other thoughts)
Cons: * mine did not fit my compact desktop, check if you have room before purchasing (compact desktop is 4" wide, card its 4.379" wide
*requires at least a 400w power supply, with 20 amps on the 12 volt rail. I only had a 220w power supply, so check this too.
* VGA plug-in uses an adapter plugged into a DMI-A port (to plug in a blue monitor cable requires you use their included adapter)
* you might want to consider your processor performance that will go with this graphics card, a low performance processor may not be as efficient in "keeping up" with this card.
Other Thoughts: In my system upgrade, I also got a better processor and a 4gb ram stick (now its 2x4gb). My old graphics card was an "integrated Intel HD graphics". Please consider these when viewing my performance changes after using this product. On one game, I went from getting 6 frames per second (fps) on minimum graphics settings to 103fps on minimum and 60 on maximum. On another game, I went from 20 fps on minimum to 125 minimum and 75 on maximum. This thing is getting me 60-75 fps on maxed-out settings, it is SOO Powerful!! and this performance is running on ~60%GPU! I love the included software programs.
(if your trying to narrow down processor choices and are interested my choices, the one I got was because a reputable site recommended the i5-3450 as the best cpu match (stated reason was because a cpu that is too fast for the graphics card may not be as efficient as a 'matched' processor).
I chose this graphics card because I thought spending $200 was more than I wanted to spend. The GPU for the 650 is ~1700, and for the 650 TI is ~2700. A reputable site said the EVGA SSC version (this product) is 9% faster than the "standard" 650 TI. I think it is one of the best for the price, and I wouldn't use any greater performance than the one this offers. (I consider 30fps plenty enough). I could play a game on maximum graphics settings, record myself playing in 1080p, play music, run many other programs, and still have plenty more performance to spare.
I would highly recommend this card.
I've never upgraded a video card before, and never played on maximum graphics settings, so my excitement is related to this. Please use your best judgement of my review and the statistics provided to see if this product it right for you.
* I will update this review with increased ownership
Pros: * Lower priced than most intel i7's
* Great performance
* Don't have to purchase or install thermal paste
* included heat sink+CPU fan
* recommended for gaming
* Quality Intel support pages
Cons: * included heat sink+fan is difficult to install (see other thoughts), does not work very well once installed "properly"
* may not be the fastest processor on the market
Other Thoughts: I installed the processor with the included heat sink and the computer ran fine, for about 30-60 minutes before it "blue-screened" then would not boot up for several tries, then worked for 30-60 minutes again. I used the manufactor (Intel) site to run a diagnostic test software (stress test, temperature, power). It failed the temperature test, I refitted the heat sink and tried again five times, then I just re-installed my old heat sink+fan on this new processor and it passed. Why didn't I do that in the first place? Could have saved myself a lot of trouble.
...Why the included heat sink+fan combo is bad, is because the heat sink doesn't use screws to install into the motherboard, it uses pins instead (look up pictures of these pins if you want more information). Because of these pins, the heat sink [usually] cannot be installed firmly onto the processor. If attempted to be installed firmly, the pins tend to not hold the grip. In my experience, I could lock it down, but I could wiggle it (the heat sink).
* I' have built, assisted, observed, and taken apart multiple computers before (a dozen?).
* I chose this processor because a reputable site said this card was the most compatible with my graphics card (their stated reason being, a CPU that is too fast for the graphics card is not quite as efficient)
(if your getting the evga 650 ti ssc (company is not endorsed, but their product is important to the CPU match recommendation) I highly recommend this product)
* my performance increase was very very high, but I can only speak for myself, because I upgraded much more than just the processor in my computer.
* I will update this review along with my increased ownership.
Pros: * [At the moment] a very reasonable price.
* Looks Awesome!!!
* Made for high performance applications and gaming (fast + heat sink)
* fits red themed chassis
*(see other thoughts)
Cons: (basicly none, but there HAS to be something...)
* Used standard memory can be a LITTLE cheaper, unless you score on a bid or buy from someone getting rid of their broken computer.
* I am writing this review early, will update when I have longer ownership
Other Thoughts: * I got this memory because it was the one my MLG PRO (Major League Gamer Professional) friend uses for his rig. He recommended this RAM for its good quality. He has owned it (4X4gb) for Over a year, so you can take the ownership from him. I have it match my red+black themed chassis.
* I like how its [at the moment] ~$10 cheaper than some other brands of ram I've seen (store retail prices tend to add on a few bucks for profit)