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This review is from: ZALMAN CNPS9500A-LED 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler
Pros: This is the first time I've ever used an aftermarket cooler. One of the best decisions I've made on my build. Using an 1155, it was surprisingly easy to install. I looked at the directions for a min, used the smaller metal bracket for the Intel 1155, and presto! Made my idle go from 33-35 C to 29-31 C. Under 100% load, went from 63 C to only 47 C max! The height of this thing is shorter than most, so that is a plus for me.
Cons: It is a little different having an external fan controller for your CPU fan, rather than PWM control from your MB. I think the customization idea of it is starting to grow on me though, so not really a con, but i can see where it might be for some. However the fan at max speed definitely gets louder than your typical stock fan running at full speed, but if you have a movie loud or wear headphones, shouldn't be a problem. Plus you can still adjust it to make it more quiet with the controller, but the question is, where do you put the controller? I also noticed that with the MB I have, the plastic support adapter was maybe only sitting 1mm above the capacitors next to the CPU. It still didn't touch, but almost made me sweat! Still giving it 5 eggs.
Other Thoughts: I did want to make mention that after securing the plastic support adapter to your MB, and after setting the cooler in place, a lot of people seemed to have trouble screwing in the metal bracket to the plastic adapter. The issue was that when you have one side "set", the other side was way too high. But after installing it, it's not as bad as it seems. When I put the first screw in, I threaded 2 threads in, then put the screw into the other side, then did that back and forth til it was snug. You do have to put some pressure on the metal bracket to get the second screw in, but barely threading the first screw in is the trick.
Set up: (the parts that matter for clearance/use info)
CPU - Intel i5 3470 LGA 1155
MB - Gigabyte GA-Z77-HD3
VC - EVGA GTX 760 ACX
DIMMs - 16 GB G.SKILL Trident X
Case - Antec 900 USB 3.0
Thermal Compound - Arctic Silver 5
Pros: I've had this memory since mid 2011, and this memory is still going strong. At the time, I'd never heard of G.SKILL and thought I was taking a risk, because everyone else always recommended 3 other well known brands. I have never had any memory errors, and never had a DIMM go out on me. The low CAS latency is a big plus as well. Love em!
Other Thoughts: I do a lot of gaming and multitasking with no hiccups using this memory. I was so impressed with G.SKILL that on my next build I will be using their DDR3-1600 Ripjaws. Can't wait!
For this memory I have it in this system...
Windows 7 64-bit
Intel LGA 775 DG45ID Mobo
Intel e7600 Core 2 Duo (Wolfdale)
ZOTAC 1GB 128-bit GT 440 (Fermi) Video Card
This review is from: Intel BOXDG45ID LGA 775 Intel G45 HDMI Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: Is an easy setup, audio sounds amazing (although I'm only using 2.1 stereo, and plan to get at least 5.1 surround), easy to use BIOS screen, and has upgrade potential for the average, budgeted computer builder. Has a 32-bit 5V PCI slot! Also good for DIY HTPC. 8GB capacity of RAM. Cool board.
Cons: Be careful of the I/O panel, especially the HDMI port, it snuck up on me!! There is a tab that you should remove, otherwise it sticks into the HDMI port upon install. Saw an earlier review with the same trouble, so i used wire cutters and the port works fine. Always double check the I/O panel before the install. Video is okay for DVD playback, but it's on-board graphics... I've had this for 3 months, and for online streaming, it's a little choppy, so I plan on upgrading to a 1GB 128-bit graphics card.... still don't know which one... Very few legacy options, no PS2 ports. Oh well.
Other Thoughts: Setup--
Rosewill case combo w/ 450w PSU
Intel Core 2 Duo e7600
4GB G.SKILL 800 MHz DDR2 RAM (2x2GB)
250GB Seagate HDD
--also the "annoying" beep when you first turn it on isn't that bad, i think people are looking for an absolutely silent
machine, but for the price it's not bad, and it can do a lot for a mATX!!