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In-Win K2 BASIC Thin Mini-ITX Black case with 120W power adapter, heat sink - Retail
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: - Extremely well built, everything fits perfectly (with the motherboard I used)
- Includes not just heat-sink, but also the fan (pre-mounted in case)
- All internal cables are exactly the right length (no cable ties needed!)
- Tool-less installation of internal 2.5" HD
- Power supply can do 110V and 220V
- Internal USB A plug, for smart card reader (?) or USB drive (see pictures)
- Looks very sleek
- Very quiet fan/heat sink
- For me, no need for extra case fans, but it has mounts for 2 tiny ones

Cons: - No thermal paste or sticker on heat sink included (buy separately!)
- Heavy (but probably needed for version that includes monitor stand)
- Non-monitor stand version has plastic cover instead (see product pic's)
- ELEVEN! screws need to be removed to get to motherboard
- With some motherboards, cables might be too short and fan might not fit
- It takes a little wiggling of the inner metal cover to expose motherboard

Other Thoughts: I've built quite a few computer systems over the years, but this one was just such a pleasure to assemble. Everything just fits soooo nicely! It's unbelievable. Beautiful case. Very well done. I was so happy to see how perfect all the screw positions and cable lengths were that I decided that the case definitely deserves 5 eggs, despite the couple of cons I listed. (For example, in comparison, the Antec ISK110 VESA just feels really sloppy and cheap. No fun.)

A couple of caveats:

- Buy thermal paste! (not included and heat sink doesn't have the usual sticker either)
- Don't stick the CMOS battery on top of the USB plugs. (the heat sink will warp the board)
- Only supports THIN Mini-ITX with external PSU that plugs directly into motherboard
- Make sure you buy a motherboard that has the CPU at exactly the same location as the listed compatible Intel boards, otherwise the heat sink won't fit. Also, it helps if the connectors (power, audio, usb, front panel header) are in the same spot as all the cables are sized to fit exactly.

My build:

- GIGABYTE GA-B75TN motherboard (N82E16813128588)
- Intel Core i5-3470S (N82E16819116876)
- IMPORTANT: Themal paste! (N82E16835100017)
- G.SKILL 2x4GB SO-DIMM DDR3 1600 (N82E16820231472)
- Some old SSD that I had lying around

System boots EXTREMELY quickly. BIOS POST takes almost no time at all.

Under full load, the 4 CPU cores go up to 78-80 deg C.

READ FULL REVIEW
SPARKLE 700003 GeForce GT 640 2GB 128-Bit DDR3 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

4 out of 5 eggs Supports 3 independent DVI-displays in PLP (not in surround gaming, though) 02/13/2013

This review is from: SPARKLE 700003 GeForce GT 640 2GB 128-Bit DDR3 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card

Pros: - Can handle 3 independent DVI monitors at high resolutions with different image rotation settings for each screen (tested with 2560x1600 + 2 x 1600x1200)

- Comes with 3 fans that are easy to swap out. I care less, that they are "silent, turbo, and efficient", and more that I have 2 replacements in case the stock one clogs up with dust and dies out! Brilliant!

- Very small card that does not even need any external PCI-e power plugs. Really cleans up my case.

- Mine came with mini-HDMI to standard-HDMI adapter (although not shown in pictures here)

- I put in the "silent" fan and it is MUCH quieter than my Corsair HX 850 PSU. Nice!

- PRICE!

Cons: - Slower than my old GTX 260 (Windows 7 Experience score of 7.1 instead of 7.3), but I knew this from the GT 640 specs on NVidia's page and for this price, it's still awesome. So no eggs lost here.

- NVidia's 2D surround gaming does not support PLP setups! I knew this before as well. It sucks, but not a negative surprise, so no egg lost here.

- There is a very obscure bug in the NVidia drivers (310.90) that, when I have a program that uses DirectX sit across two or more monitors, the part of the DirectX image in the program shows the wrong section of the rendering surface on the portrait displays. I already filed a bug report with NVidia. Let's see if they get around to fixing it. Since this problem also shows up in Firefox and Chrome, which is really annoying, I will take off an egg for that.

Other Thoughts: I was looking for a single card to drive my PLP (portrait-landscape-portrait) monitor setup consisting of a 30" 2560x1600 monitor in the middle flanked by two vertical 20" 1600x1200 screens. This one does it almost flawlessly. The 2D performance on the side screens is much better than back when I had one card drive the middle monitor and another drive the two sides. For this price, I almost couldn't be happier (barring one obscure driver problem (see cons)).

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ENERMAX UC-8EB 80mm Case Fan
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: more than 1 year

4 out of 5 eggs Works, but not really cleanable 02/08/2013

This review is from: ENERMAX UC-8EB 80mm Case Fan

Pros: Works.

Is fairly quiet.

Lasts longer than regular fans (maybe 50% longer).

Cons: The statement "Detachable fan blades can be cleaned" in the details is somewhat misleading. They are attached VERY tightly and you are more likely to break the fan than to get it taken apart and put back together.

I own about 10 of these and all of them feel like they won't come off. I decided to try a little harder with one of them and the fan did detach, but not before breaking the case.

Once you do break it apart, by the way, you notice that essentially this is also just a sleeve bearing...

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Markus A.'s Profile

Display Name: Markus A.

Date Joined: 10/17/07

  • Reviews: 7
  • Helpfulness: 4
  • First Review: 12/06/08
  • Last Review: 08/16/13
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