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Pros: Quiet, effective, sturdy-feeling
Cons: none so far
Other Thoughts: Bought two of these to replace the stock fans in a Thermaltake Lanbox lite. They are whisper quiet, and move enough air to serve their purpose easily. I've never bought a Vantec product before, but the packaging and the product are both top notch.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: Thermaltake CL-P0257 Blue orb II CPU Cooler for LGA775 & K8
Pros: Attractive, sturdy, Quiet and effective
Cons: none so far
Other Thoughts: Picked this up open box from Newegg, and couldn't be happier. Worlds better than the stock AM2 fan, both in noise and in cooling capability. The whole system runs whisper quiet now, whereas before CPU heat would ramp up fans under load.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - Low profile design fit my small case very well
- Very straightforward install with Win7 & XBMC Live
- Full DTS HD support over HDMI
- 3d compatibility (untested by me)
Cons: - Twice as expensive as the previous (and capable) HTPC darling video card, the GT 210.
- D-Sub connector poorly placed
Other Thoughts: This card was seemingly introduced with HTPCs in mind. It's gaming benchmarks are so/so, but its HTPC feature set is really phenomenal.
I'm using it alongside an AMD Athlon II X2 processor and a newer Gigabyte motherboard, and installation was a breeze. Space is somewhat tight in my smaller case, and the low-profile card fit perfectly.
This card is really geared for the HTPC builder who wants a futureproof system. It handles today's cutting-edge formats, like 3d, DTS HD and Dolby TrueHD, and handles them all seamlessly over a single HDMI connection. I have it running into my AVR, and my HTPC truly functions like an appliance. If you want the best card for a niche market, this is the one. Spending more would almost certainly get you less, as far as HTPC uses are concerned.