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SILKE H.'s Profile > 
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Banana Pi Bpi001 Dual-Core CPU 1G-RAM 1G-Ethernet Single Board Computer - Fully Compatible With Raspberry Pi
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: These small single-board computers are amazing, especially when we consider that the computing power of this Banana Pi (dual core, 1 GB RAM) was standard for laptops 5-10 years ago.

Computing power is good, thanks to RAM and the dual-core CPU. Graphics performance is good, x window is very usable (e.g., with xfce or lubuntu).

The Banana Pi comes with several nice extras, such as gigabit ehternet, reset and power button, built-in infrared, and even a SATA connector.

On the Banana Pi website, a number of different operating system images can be downloaded, including Bananian (a Debian derivative), lubuntu (yes, the full version!), and Android. Good for any form of development system.

Cons: Cons? Crashes, crashes, crashes. I am running this board side-by-side with a Raspberry Pi for a simple control job. No fancy GUI, no high CPU or GPU load. No overclocking. I get kernel panics every few hours with the "official" Bananian O/S. With lubuntu, it seems to be even worse.The RPi runs the same application without a hitch.

What is wrong? Is this a poor kernel build? Poor quality control? Kernel panics should not happen in any well-designed system with healthy hardware. This unstable behavior is not acceptable.

Other Thoughts: Judging by the other reviews, there seem to exist well-performing BPIs out there, and it is just possible that I drew a lemon. If not, I can only conclude that the O/S was sloppily built. Either way, this is sad, because the performance of this great little computer is otherwise quite amazing.

Would I buy it again? Considering that the RPi catches up in performance, probably not.

Lenovo Thinkpad T410 - Core i5, 2.4ghz, 4GB DDR3, 250GB HDD, DVDRW- 7 Home Premium
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

2 out of 5 eggs OK for its price, but "refurbished" seems a stretch 02/10/2015

This review is from: Lenovo Thinkpad T410 - Core i5, 2.4ghz, 4GB DDR3, 250GB HDD, DVDRW- 7 Home Premium

Pros: I got this as a deal for roughly eighty bucks below its regular price. For an i5 with 4GB memory, I consider this a good deal. My plan was to replace its hard disk with a SSD and Linux from the get-go, so I had the SSD costs factored in. On 4GB of memory, Linux runs nicely, and this computer is a strong performer for day-to-day Linux use (office, graphics and scientific applications). Lenovo is a company that fully embraces Linux support, and all components worked with 14.04 out of the box. There were no complications.

Cons: Before I begin, let me quote: "'Refurbished' products have been tested to ensure compliance with original manufacturer specifications (...)". Mhm. The exterior of the laptop showed traces of wear, which is probably expected for a refurbished product. The power adapter came with a power cord that looked like it was fished out of a dustbin. Never mind, this is minor.

The battery was almost dead, Fully charged, ACPI reported 20% of its nominal capacity. On inspection, there was a hand-written label on the battery that helpfully said "20%". Can I assume that Lenovo stocks almost-dead batteries for its "refurbished" products?

The hard disk looked like it had a long history of abuse (mfg date: 2012), but it passed the extended self-test. The previous self-test was apparently run by the manufacturer, and it was logged at a run time of 4800 hours. Consider: With a use of, say, 8 hours a day, this means the laptop was in use for almost two years. You call that "refurbished"? Second-hand is what comes to mind.

Two GB on-board memory and a 2GB module provide the total of 4GB. The module was of a slower speed than the on-board memory. The specs probably don't say that the extension memory has to match the on-board DDR3-10600, but throttling it to DDR3-8500 does not help performance. Amateur upgrade?

Other Thoughts: To be sure, refurbished products can be hit or miss, and it is not specified what length of use those items have got. However, "compliance with manufacturer specifications" is quite clear, and it certainly does not involve a battery that can't hold its charge -- worse, it was even labeled as as a run-down battery. In this respect, I consider the label "refurbished" simply dishonest. Sad, actually. The product is quite good, but my trust in the manufacturer has eroded.

brother P-touch PT-2030AD Desktop
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: Prints labels, just as it should. A number of cardriges is available that contain the adhesive strip and the thermal transfer ribbon. Different sizes and colors make this device quite flexible. Also, the label printer allows to flexibly tweak the font (size, width, multiline) and allows to auto-fit the text on a given label size. A well-designed preview function gives a good idea how the final label is going to look like. Battery operation is possible. The generously sized keyboard is easy to operate. Navigation is straightforward, in most of the cases.

Cons: *Labels look OK, but no mre than that. Print quality is about that of a 1990's inkjet printer

* To achieve a uniform look of labels with same size and different amount of text, some tweaking is necessary. It cannot optimize text over two lines

* The package comes with a "starter cartridge" only, and additional cartridges are relatively expensive.

* Each label is preceded by about 1" of waste (for easier cutting). It takes several menu steps to "chain" labels where this waste does not occur. However, with chained labels, manual cutting with scissors is required.

Other Thoughts: I got this printer on sale for a steep discount even over Newegg's regular low price. The cartridge is a solid solution, but if the purchase price of the printer is less than the price of two cartridges, we see the usual scheme where the manufacturers make their money with the supplies.

The printer has no PC connectivity. This is OK for me as the software that comes with some other label printers is usually not helpful.


SILKE H.'s Profile

Display Name: SILKE H.

Date Joined: 06/04/05

  • Reviews: 35
  • Helpfulness: 15
  • First Review: 09/21/11
  • Last Review: 03/03/15
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