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SYBA SD-VIA-1A2S VIA PCI SATA 1.5G / IDE ATA 133 Combo Controller Card / Supports Raid 0, 1, 0+1, JBOD, non-RAID mode
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: SATA ports worked when I tried them. It *did* boot from CDROM in legacy mode on the UEFI mobo and even says CDROM on the boot ROM screen by the firmware version even though SYBA says CDROM boot is not supported. IDE CDROMs worked some of the time, on some discs.

Cons: I got this specifically to squeeze the last life out of a pair of ATAPI DVD burners using a single IDE cable (the Gigabyte H81M-HD3 has no IDE but PCI), and it almost worked out. But the first sign of trouble was when trying to copy an audio CD, I found the drive would fail to find the disc and even Explorer would hang up the [My] Computer window trying to read and update its icons for the drives. If there was an audio disc in when the boot ROM was detecting media, it would stall for many seconds before the UEFI could even start reading hard disks. Other kinds of discs worked, especially DVDs. The SYBA support tech suggested PCI is too old & slow a bus for this task (even though PCI IDE adapters & RAID cards are older than DDR, PCI isn't magically getting slower, and SYBA specifically designed and marketed a card for the purpose) and the SYBA forum had nothing to say for months. Recently I attempted to burn a Linux ISO to a blank 700M CD but something in this failing configuration kept Nero Express from even getting to the point where it would show a window, and Infracorder and ImgBurn threw errors while trying to find burners as well. I just replaced it with a pair of IDE-SATA adapters and all the problems evaporated. I seriously considered doing that in the first place and I'm rather sorry I didn't, because the 10-15 USD difference would have cost me a little educational experience but saved a ton of frustration.

Other Thoughts: I can't remember a drive choking specifically on audio discs or a controller being able to make it do so, before this. It's bizarre. I thought about downgrading the ROM to something that matched the chip but the flash utility couldn't find the card. I wondered if it needed to be put into an older PC but never tried it because I wanted to not get further in. It might have been alright to just keep audio discs away from the machine but then Windows started spontaneously stalling on a Vista-like boot screen for minutes at a time instead of just booting in 20 seconds like usual, but only a few times before I decided the card had to go. If that happens again now that the card is out I will be very surprised and make a note here (if I even can).

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ASUS GT630-SL-2GD3-L GeForce GT 630 2GB 64-Bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 Low Profile Ready Video Card
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: Just a bit of an addendum: all the L4D2 and Portal trouble-free HQ play was on a Phenom II X4 940 @ 3.0GHz with 6GB DDR2-800, at the TV's native 1360x768 over HDMI and with no overclocking anywhere.

Cons: Coolbits is back since shortly after my 1st review where I said nVidia wasn't on it, so that was wrong... derp. I haven't played with it yet.

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ASUS GT630-SL-2GD3-L GeForce GT 630 2GB 64-Bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 Low Profile Ready Video Card
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 month to 1 year

Pros: It just works and doesn't get absurdly hot. It whips around what I throw at it, mostly shader and GPGPU demos and lightweight games, no new AAA titles. I could play L4D2 or Portal in Linux with all the quality/detail turned all the way up and it handled that, no trouble.

Cons: Can't overclock in Linux yet and nVidia says fixing the reclocking part in their driver and re-enabling Coolbits is a low priority for them. The same applies to Fermi and Maxwell so it's not a big deal here. Since it's only PCI-E 8x, the PCB is *small* and that seems neat until you realize that the PCI-E slot can't lock it in place because it doesn't reach the lock. That has to be so with all x1,x4,x8 cards but I doubt so many of them have to worry about this big crazy heatsink to stabilize with just some friction and a screw and the rigidity of your case. On the other other hand, if there's a closed-end x8 slot, this will fit in it. I don't mind, because...

Other Thoughts: This seems perfect for strapping to an aging laptop as eGPU because the PCI-E bandwidth is already limited and the 12V aux supply can be almost puny. I'm glad to see the price hasn't dropped in 4 months even though another core architecture came out in the meantime.

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Janis H.'s Profile

Display Name: Janis H.

Date Joined: 11/17/03

  • Reviews: 10
  • Helpfulness: 1
  • First Review: 11/12/08
  • Last Review: 11/10/14
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