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Phanteks PH-F120MP 120 mm PWM, High Static Pressure Radiator Fan
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: How far have you gone to silence your gaming PC? HTPC's are easy, but something that NEEDS good airflow because of the amount of heat the system puts out is a whole new ball field. Here are my specs:

i5-2500k @ 4.5 ghz
EVGA GTX 780 FTW edition
8gb Corsair Vengeance DDR3-1600
EVGA Super Nova 750w PSU
x2 Western Digital cavier blacks (2 TB a piece) in RAID 0
Samsung 850 Evo 256gb
Rosewill THOR V2 case

My case fans are 1 Cougar 140mm fan and the two stock 230mm Rosewill fans that came with my system (they are surprisingly good!). I have insulated both of the panel doors with sound dampening foam, all the fans are treated with rubber grommets, and I also removed the legs from the case and replaced them with Sorbothane rubber hemispheres to cancel out any vibrations reverberating to my desk - they make a nice difference especially if you have loud hard drives like my Caviar's.

Anyways, I cool my CPU using a Corsair H100i system. While it works quite well, the fans that came with it were by far the loudest thing in my system both at idle and also when I am gaming. I use my desktop for movies as well as so getting it silent at idle was actually more important to me than anything else. I searched around for a while and came across these puppies. I'll admit I was kind of hesitant at first since there weren't any reviews, but oh man when I first turned my rig on I had to check to make sure they were actually working. Whether at idle or running hard, these things are stupidly quiet while not sacrificing performance. They push about the same amount of air as the old Corsair fans while putting out, I'd said, 1/6 the noise. They are that stinking quiet. At idle, I sometimes forget that my computer is even on. The most my CPU gets up to is 65c under Prime95, but normal gaming it hovers in the 53-58c depending on the game.

Cons: They were a tad expensive at the time I bought them and I wish they came in different colors.

Other Thoughts: The packaging is pretty much no-frills. All it comes with is the screws and fan. However, Phanteks was nice enough to put the direction of the airflow on the fan. I've been doing this stuff for over a decade and I still forget which way is which sometimes, so it's a nice touch.

Overall, extremely impressed and satisfied. You should get these.

PNY Optima SSD7SC240GOPT-RB 2.5
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Inexpensive and lots of storage.

Cons: I was just casually watching Breaking Bad on Netflix then all of a sudden my computer froze, restarted, and my SSD was unable to be recognized.

Ironically, I bought this on 04/14/2014 and it died on 07/14/2014; exactly three months. To add insult to injury, this is my fifth SSD and probably the most unsatisfying in terms of speed. I've own/still own a Samsung 470, OCZ Vertex II, Sandisk Ultra, Sandisk Extreme Pro, and this drive. My Sandisk Extreme Pro I bought almost two years ago is faster than this drive and my Samsung 470 I bought almost FOUR years ago is still working fine. I wouldn't really mind the slower speed because the amount of storage you get makes up for it, but it doesn't help that it's not very reliable.

Other Thoughts: I honestly don't understand why SSD's seem to be a hit or miss. This is the second SSD I've had die on me in the last two years. It's a solid state technology (no moving parts) and yet I've had more problems with SSD's than I have had with regular hard drives in the 10+ years I've been doing this stuff. Shame, but I guess you get what you pay for. Back to Samsung I go.

Intel Core i3-4330 Haswell Dual-Core 3.5GHz LGA 1150 54W BX80646I34330 Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4600
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: What to say? It performs very well for the price. I used this in a hackintosh I built for my girlfriend for Creative Suite programs and it handles itself very well. I myself use a i5-2500k and am impressed by the performance of this chip. The integrated graphics can run older games just fine as well.

Cons: I hope this is my last Intel product. Why you may ask? Because Intel is obviously taking advantage of it's complete lack of competition from AMD in more ways than one. Seriously. Even the box art is terrible and looks like a middle school kid took random images that look "cool" and put them in Photoshop.

But that isn't my main complaint. \I immediately noticed some really awful temperatures the first time I started testing this thing. With ambient temps at around 25c, this chip sat at 45c idle and would creep up to 75c under prime 95. Even my i5-2500k, albeit water cooled at 4.5ghz, doesn't come close to that. My first suspicion was the poor excuse for a heat sink Intel provides so I replaced it with a Rosewill RCX-Z775 cooler that looks almost identical to the stock cooler, except it has a copper core to further help heat transfer.Nothing crazy, but should make a difference.

I was really disappointed (and puzzled) that idle temps had a measly 1-2 degree difference and almost none under load. I even tried different aftermarket thermal pastes (Promalitech PK-1, MX-2, Gelid GC-Extreme) and none of them hardly made a difference as well!

I think at that point most people would have just accepted the circumstances, but the enthusiast in me couldn't let it go. I'm sure most of you reading this have heard about Intel recently switching to TIM instead of fluxless solder on their heat spreaders and this was my last suspicion. I quickly looked up a guide on how to take the heat spreader off via hammer and vice grip method (It sounds scary, but it's actually very easy and a lot safer than using a razor blade). IYes, I knowingly delidded an i3 processer, but I've lapped processors before so it wasn't exactly the craziest thing I've done in order to get better temperatures. So I quickly cleaned up enough thermal paste to fill a swimming pool thanks to Intel, replaced it with GC-Extreme (my best thermal paste), and put the heat spreader back on. What do you know? 35c idle temps and 65c load temps. Nothing to brag home to about, but much more acceptable nonetheless.

Overkill for a budget processor? You bet. Proving that Intel is nickel-and-diming their customers? Absolutely.

Other Thoughts: I've never gone through so much trouble for a budget processor. before. People, this is a 54w processor. The old Athlon X2 6400 in my dads computer runs at better temperatures with it's stock heat sink and that sucker has a 125w TDP!

The worst part is that you can't really vote with your wallet. I love AMD at heart, but their processors as of the last 3 years have been pathetic and are hardly an option I ever recommend to people anymore, but then you have Intel who are doing nonsense like this and, well, the CPU world is really depressing at the moment.


Robert R.'s Profile

Display Name: Robert R.

Date Joined: 03/23/09

  • Reviews: 33
  • Helpfulness: 17
  • First Review: 02/16/12
  • Last Review: 11/24/14
  • Most Favorable Review: 5 out of 5 eggs
  • Most Critical Review: 1 out of 5 eggs
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