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Pros: - It does the job.
- Burns and reads rather quietly and quickly.
Cons: - It doesn't play Blu-rays? Don't laugh, this is a problem if your case doesn't have a surplus of drive bays.
Other Thoughts: I don't have much to say about this. It's a perfectly typical multi-format burner drive. If you need a DVD drive in your machine, it's an excellent choice.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - It works.
- It works really well.
- It's not conductive.
- It's as advertized.
Cons: - I just personally think it's a little expensive but, hey, if it works then it's worth it.
Other Thoughts: There's really not much to say, but what did you expect? It's thermal paste people, it's not the most complex thing in the world. That said, this stuff works very well. So if you think you need the best, go ahead and buy it. I certainly don't regret it, and I don't think my 3770k does either.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: - Faster than AMD.
- Faster than most other Intel chips.
- Lots of impressive instructions sets.
- Hyper-Threading is much improved over the original Pentium 4 implementations.
- K series chips like this one have unlocked multipliers needed for overclocking.
Cons: - Way too expensive for what it is.
- Poor overclocking performance from voltage limits (not thermally limited)
- Only 4 actual execution cores.
- Tacked on / forced on-board graphics chip has numerous issues.
- K series chips sacrifice all Intel specific computing technologies for multiplier overclocking, making them a poor choice for non-gamers or professional users.
Other Thoughts: It's hard to start off with a review of this chip, as it's probably the most mixed-bag product I've ever purchased. to start with the basic positive point of this chip, it's really fast. This is currently one of the fastest processors you can buy, and if all you care about is the extra speed then you won't have any regrets.
However, it's less than stellar on all other fronts. The K series chips are missing all of Intel's more impressive virtualization and related professional technologies, which would be fine if they were going for a minimalist overclocking chip. However, these CPUs have an Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics chip built right into the CPU itself. As you could very well imagine, Intel's support of this chip is generally bad. Direct Compute 5 is falsely reported as being fully compatible, which may break some programs on the DirectX level within Windows itself. The chip also reports compatibility with OpenCL 1.2, but the actual latest drivers currently only report OpenCL1.1 compatibility within their own Information Center screens, making the claim unlikely. These graphics chips also report OpenGL compatibility of 0.0, which is worrisome, and they apparently only support DirectX 11 despite 11.1 being a software-only update. Intel Quick Sync Video is a good technology on these graphics chips but, you need to have a monitor's desktop rendering on the chip to be able to use it at all so, using Quick Sync requires either a software trick in windows 7/8 or having an extra monitor to plug into the motherboard itself. Overall it's not the worst experience I've had with Intel's graphics processors, but it certainly doesn't fit a product of this caliber.
Back to the processor itself, overclocking performance was poor. On my old Phenom II x4 965 overclocking performance was generally fairly linear, meaning that upping the base clock would work perfectly well at proper voltages no matter what the multiplier was. with that CPU, as long as you could stomach the heat and the power consumption the chip would be stable. The 3770k hit a solid brick wall at 4.5 GHz. Going over that, or 1.5volts on the CPU cores would create lockups and crashes. Nothing solved this, not even a Kraken x60 and very cool temps. It was just a wall that curiously did not appear in any professional reviews of the product. While I understand Intel isn't responsible for overclocking performance in their products, I found the issue concerning none the less.
Overall, I can't argue with the chip's speed. It destroys every other quad core chip I've had with ease, but the chip definitely has its flaws and those flaws make it difficult to live with. If you must have the fastest quad core around, then you know what you're buying. Otherwise, look elsewhere.
CPU: Intel i7 3770k
RAM: 16GB G.Skill Ripjaws Z
Mobo: Gigabyte G1 Sniper.3
GFX: EVGA GTX 680 FTW+ 4GB w/backplate
Compute GFX: EVGA GTX 560 Ti 448 Cores Classified Ultra
PSU: Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200watt