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This review is from: Dell Latitude E6420 i5-2520M 2.5Ghz 4GB 256GB SSD Win 7 Pro COA
Pros: The product typically has 4.5/5 stars on the reviews I've seen and the price could not be beat. I was a little nervous buying a refurbished laptop since refurbished can mean as little as buffing out the scratches to overhauling the guts of the machine. I took a chance and am very thrilled with this machine. It came exactly as advertised and I really couldn't ask for more.
Cons: Definitely a DIY product, comes with Windows installation CD but not a CD for drivers and product is not ready to use out of the box. I had to download the ethernet driver from my desktop PC and install it onto this machine but once I did that, the machine was off updating and setting itself up. This is a product sold by a company that specializes in IT equipment but it's also a great steal for those who are tech-savvy.
Other Thoughts: A review of this product would be incomplete without mentioning the company behind it. I had never heard of TekBoost but so far, they've been fantastic. They gave me a courtesy call the day before it arrived to make sure my product was what I needed and to remind me of the 1-year warranty (not mentioned in the product details!). This was simply a courtesy call, there was no upsell or high-pressure sales tactics or anything, just a friendly see-how-you're-doing phone call. They also thanked me for being a first-time buyer and gave me 5% off my next order, on top of their can't-beat prices!READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: Corsair Voyager Air 1TB External Hard Drive CMFAIR-RED-1000-NA Red
Pros: I love this little device! It's a bit heavier than you'd think from looking it at but I'm guessing that's from the battery and wireless equipment packed inside. Overall, it feels solid, sturdy, and well-built.
I was surprised how well it integrates with my iPhone. I downloaded the app and was able to change all of the settings intuitively and with no problems. The wireless passthru feature was definitely a nice touch and I didn't expect it, especially after reading one professional review talking about how annoying it was to keep switching his iPhone from his wireless router to his Voyager Air (the review was from March so maybe this is new?). All of my (two) devices are now connected to my Voyager Air, it passes my wireless router through itself, and I can browse and use the internet normally without any noticeable decrease in speed.
It also comes with enough cables for any situation I can possibly imagine: car port adapter, USB cable, eSATA cable, and standard wall adapter for power. I definitely see myself taking this on road trips and to airports in order to stream movies onto my smartphone. Professional reviews are reporting ~7.5 hours of battery life with the wireless signal on so my phone will likely run out of battery first.
I've been able to connect this device wirelessly but it took me longer than it should have. I'll say most of this was user error since I had never set up a home network before but part of it was definitely from the weird documentation (more below). Once set up, I've had no problems transferring files back and forth wirelessly.
Cons: The documentation was very helpful for setting up my iPhone but not so helpful with my windows desktop computer. The booklet that came with it gives instructions on how to connect the drive to your home network via ethernet cable tied into a wireless router. I didn't have a spare ethernet cable lying around (it's still in transit) but I was able to find an instruction manual on their website that describes how to use the device and includes a small section on connecting wirelessly through a desktop PC. Strangely enough, the instructions online are a completely different booklet than the one that shipped with the device. This is more of an oddity than a negative and it doesn't impact the device since I got it to work eventually so I won't deduct a star for it. On a sidenote, there's a lot more documentation on their website and it's very helpful!
Other Thoughts: Their website shows a comparison between their device and the Seagate Wireless Plus. I don't blame for the shameless self-promotion, I just thought it was funny.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: MSI 760GM-P35 AM3 AMD 760G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
Pros: I bought this thing in November 2011. I was in love with it then and am still in love with it now. My system was more Frankenstein-ed than built purposefully and thoughtfully. Being perpetually cash-strapped and in graduate school, I waited and bought all of my parts when they were on fire-sale: a $180 computer case for $39.99 from a small company going out of business, a processor and CPU cooler for 70% off when AMD and Intel rolled out their new chips, a $350 power supply for $125 when the new model came out, etc. Because of this, my parts had a wide range of dates and weird compatibility issues. The most prominent one was one hard drive and my CD drive using an IDE ribbon cable while my other two hard drives were SATA cables. This is one of the few hybrid motherboards with a lot of room for expansion that supported both IDE and SATA cables, which was very hard to find.
Aside from that, it's been very reliable and continues to be robust. I am updating from Windows XP to Windows 7 this fall and am adding more RAM when Cyber Monday comes around. I am not having any problems finding compatible parts and I expect to keep this motherboard for at least another 3 years, hopefully 5 before upgrading. This is a quality product and I am very, very pleased with it.
Cons: Not really a con but the weird thing was that the picture showed the motherboard using red plastic but mine is blue. All the slots and ports are in the same places but I thought they had shipped me the wrong product at first. I also got it at a steep discount because I bought it refurbished instead of new but I'm not sure how that information helps anyone reading this review.READ FULL REVIEW