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OCZ ARC 100 ARC100-25SAT3-480G 2.5
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: I used this drive in a Win7 machine, hosting the operating system and running on an older Gigabyte AM3 board. I did not do anything to "help" the drive, like turn off Windows search indexing...just dropped the drive in and ran with it.

This is my second OCZ SSD. The last one has been running for over a year now and has been flawless.

Great points about this drive:

- FAST (this is what it's about, right?) On a SATA3 port Crystal was reporting 334.4 MB/s read and 194.34 MB/s write (sequential), and random R/W of 512KB files of 293.5 MB/s and 204.7 MB/s (respectively). This is pretty darn good and better than I've seen in other SATA3 SSDs I've had.

- Windows 7 boots from BIOS completion to desktop in under 15 seconds.

- File transfer from an older Corsair SSD to this drive: 220 MB/s for a 2.2G file (average).

- Nice looking, almost unbelievably small.

- Comes with nice mounting tray and screws.

- Great price point, and good 3 year warranty, based on serial number not purchase receipt.

It comes with the OCZ SSDGuru software which is very good -- but you need to pay attention when setting up the drive:

- Make sure you have your SATA controller (via BIOS) in AHCI mode.

- If you want to over-provision (which is a GREAT idea, since it will allow the Barefoot controller to move data around the drive intelligently, to avoid early wearout of the memory NAND gates on the device) -- you will need to use a partition tool to dial the drive partition down. I set approx 10% of the physical drive space for this.

- The SSDGuru GUI is very nicely laid out. Gives you an overview of the health of the drive, space usage and firmware update status.

- It also shows you the drive serial number and estimated remaining % of life remaining (based on memory cell wearout detection).

- Gives full SMART diagnostic info, showing all key usage statistics for the drive.

- Has a manual TRIM feature if you have turned TRIM off in the OS (which I would not recommend).

Cons: None. This drive meets the expectations of the specifications, the controller firmware is excellent and the management software is excellent. I'm very happy with my other OCZ SSD as well - no issues whatsoever.

Other Thoughts: At this price it's an easy decision. OCZ seems very committed to these drives and on top of their support. Remember you will ALWAYS have a chance of an early life fail (within a few weeks) of an SSD, or a spinning drive for that matter -- so having a robust backup strategy is very important. It is unfortunate when a drive fails but this is when you look to the company to stand behind the product and honor the warranty with no fuss.

LG 29UM67P Black 29
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: Lot's of good with this monitor:

- 21:9 is the future. It's the cinema standard so if you want to watch movies on your computer unless going out to a TV, there is no better monitor format than 21:9

- More games are being designed to 21:9. If you are a gamer, this monitor is for you.

- Tons of settings. I actually found this monitor to be just about perfect out of the box, which was a nice surprise. I'm used to spending 1-2 hours playing with settings to get a monitor dialed in, and after setting this one up and comparing to my "bench reference" monitor, I found it to be nearly dead-on. If you are a photographer, graphic designer or just someone who really wants their monitor set up to a perfect sRGB or Adobe color-space, then this is the monitor for you.

I have access to calibration equipment and I found that it met the sRGB spec nearly perfectly. The color accuracy on this monitor is mind boggling, at this price point.

- Included software is excellent. You can configure for multiple split-screen formats, and you can even run two separate computers into this monitor and move between split-screens. For those who run Apple and PC this gets rid of the endless "bobble head" syndrome switching between two physical monitors. Very nice job, LG!

- Sound through the included speakers is very usable.

- Stand is decent, and has a solid feel when tilting.

- I was not able to exercise the AMD freesync feature. However, I "get it" and am confident that LG has also nailed this; if you are a gamer the complete fluidity of motion that this card/monitor synch technology provides will be important to you. Kudos to LG for including this.

- "Black Stabilizer" feature is nice. It's a smart contrast tool, where it will level out areas of the screen that are too dark. This is great for working with photos, and for games. I'm a heavy photoshop user and constantly have to have two windows open to catch stuff that is hidden in photos due to contrast -- this instantly fixes that problem.

- Input lag is a non-issue. It's a 5ms panel which is over 10x lower the threshold any normal human can detect.

- Text is crystal clear on this monitor, and the whites are literally "paper white". Best I have ever seen. Very bright IPS panel.

- The joystick navigator (nicely placed at the bottom middle edge of the monitor), is awesome. For years we have suffered with hidden buttons on monitors and having to train our fingers to hit the right button. Not with this monitor, the joystick is a genius move on LG's part - you will love it.

- Menu allows you to turn off the power LED. Always nice when manufacturers remember this.

- VESA 75x75 mount point on back/center of monitor. I hate it when manufacturers fail to provide VESA mount ability on their panels. If you want to wall mount this, or find a snazzy fully articulating desk pedestal-style mount, you can.

Cons: Absolutely zero technical cons. The only "con" I can point out is the price; the entry ticket is a little high here but if you have a need for a monitor like this it is worth every penny.

Other Thoughts: Remember you are "only" going to get 60hz out of this across DVI or HDMI. And with a monitor like this your cables matter. Before you install it make sure you have the latest/best spec HDMI cable or DVI-D. For example, I inadvertently hooked it up initially with a DVI-I cable. Once I saw it fail at 2560x1080 I realized what was up. Switched to DVI-D and it was pure joy. Do not skimp on cables.

Linksys EA8500 AC2600 Dual-Band Smart WI-FI Wireless Router
  • eggxpert iconEggXpert
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

5 out of 5 eggs Excellent Router 06/26/2015

This review is from: Linksys EA8500 AC2600 Dual-Band Smart WI-FI Wireless Router

Pros: I've been a 100% Linksys shop both at home and my places of business over a decade. This is an excellent router.

This router's key strengths:

- All the usual Linksys features (port forwarding, wireless scheduling, QoS and WMM settings, DHCP, static IP, IPv6 support, etc. -- it's all there).

- Gigabit wired ports (also more or less a 'given' at this point...)

- Guest network, which firewalls guests from your private network. Presents itself like a hotel login -- user's device will come up with a screen asking for the guest password.

- Ease of setup, very nice GUI interface via browser.

- Ease of connecting (including WPS, and even a QR code generator with the free Linksys smartphone app you can get to manage your router).

- Great performance on 5GHz. I do the "driveway test" with streaming video to my iPad . I have a 200' driveway and I can always get to the end and beyond with 2.4GHz. On some 5GHz routers I can only get 20' to 30' away from the house. With this router I was consistently getting over 100' away, which is not shabby at all for the 5GHz band(s).

- Twonky media server built in; this is very cool -- you store your movies, pictures, music onto a connected USB drive and the router becomes a NAS and a media server. My Roku found it easily and I could watch movies right from this setup, very nice. Plex would have even been nicer but Twonky works 'ok'.

- MU-MIMO ready. Note that this does NOT make a difference to any devices out there today! This will come into play in July 2015 and beyond as MU-MIMO devices start to become available. In one sentence: this allows the router to service multiple devices during the same Tx/Rx time-slice. This becomes important to prevent bandwidth starvation as more and more wireless devices sit on your network. I didn't even realize, I had 14 devices on my home network (which I can easily see now thanks to the cool network map the GUI renders for me!). Of course, over time you'll need to replace all your wireless devices with MU-MIMO capable versions, but this will naturally happen as I believe this is the standard that is going to 'win' in the marketplace.

- Router is very cool looking, and for me running it for over a week, has been rock solid. D/L speeds have been some of the best I have seen on 2.4GHz and hands-down the very best on 5GHz compared to any other router. I was seeing over 300Mb/sec speeds (!)

- AWESOME app for your smart phone, whereby you can bring up the router's GUI no matter where you are. They did a really nice job with this.

Cons: Just a few minor cons:

- I wish there was an option to NOT broadcast the Guest wireless network SSID. I don't like having an SSID "out there" for people to try to break into. I know the good hackers can still find it but I just like turning off SSID. Thankfully for the normal 2.3GHz and 5GHz networks you can still turn off SSID

- USB throughput on an NTFS connected hard drive is really not too good. I'm getting consistently around 50MB/sec on a gigabit wired network...should be nearly twice that speed. I hope they fix this with a future firmware update.

- Unless you need MU-MIMO (which you really don't yet), it's a little spendy to go out and buy this router just for the sake of upgrading.

Other Thoughts: There are some growing pains with Linksys now part of Belkin.

For one thing, you are connected to the Philippines for customer support (which is only offered to you for 90 days). When I called, the person didn't even know that Linksys was part of Belkin and insisted that me seeing a Belkin website for this product was impossible.

The privacy policy that you are forced to accept before you can even set up your router almost had me packing this up and sending it back. I really hope this is just an artifact of the Belkin merge and it will be fixed -- but you are forced into some weird Belkin privacy policy page which tells you that they are going to collect usage information from you including device information you use to connect to the internet, IP addresses, etc.

Given the fact that this router does communicate with Linksys servers (for the remote management feature, via smartphone app) - it isn't far-fetched that they could actually be harvesting all sorts of marketing information from your web surfing habits or any other traffic through the router.

If you want to see it yourself, go to belkin dot com /us/privacypolicy/

I sure hope Belkin fixes this privacy policy with respect to the Linksys brand and reflects what they should really be committing to -- your privacy.


Christopher C.'s Profile

Display Name: Christopher C.

Date Joined: 04/18/05

  • Reviews: 40
  • Helpfulness: 26
  • First Review: 08/31/05
  • Last Review: 08/17/15
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