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G.SKILL Ares Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-1600C9Q-16GAO
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: more than 1 year

Pros: They do what they're supposed to do if you take it easy on them.

Cons: They don't seem very durable to me.
Lasted for about 15 months before dying.

Other Thoughts: Purchased in March 2012 and were working fine until I ran my PC mining litecoins for 2 days straight while traveling. When I returned, my PC (win 8) was continuously crashing with all sorts of different error messages. After ruling out the video card and restoring my PC to normal clocks (not overclocked), I finally swapped out this RAM for my old Corsair 8GB set and it's been smooth sailing since.

XFX FX-795A-TNFC Radeon HD 7950 Core Edition 3GB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: Clocked at 900Mhz out of the box
Memory at 1250 default
Good-looking card
A real workhorse
Bought two cards and both have been rock solid reliable

Cons: Cooler is only so-so

Other Thoughts: I purchased 2 of these cards to mine litecoins and have been working them pretty hard. Side-by-side they run 100% 24/7 and their temps rarely go past 81 deg C. To achieve this I had to put a box fan blowing toward the cards (set to low speed) and another 6" Thermaltake exhaust fan operating at around 4000rpm to take the exhaust from the cards and blow it out a window. Without this setup, the cards exhaust hot air in every direction and only about 25% of it gets outside the computer case.

Another option would be to have a very strong front intake fan blowing from the front of the case toward the cards. This would push all the hot air THROUGH the cards and out their cute little exhaust ports. You would probably have to buy the fan and make sure it operates at a high rpm (don't rely on whatever was installed in your case by the manufacturer).

If you are just running one of these cards alone, you'd probably not have much trouble as long as your case has good air flow - just keep an eye on the temps!

On a side note, while this card seems very reliable, Sapphire's Vapor-X line of cards run much cooler and quieter. I have one of their 7950s and it is near silent and at 100% operates at around 65 deg C without any weird setups like I just described.

SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 100352VXSR Radeon HD 7950 3GB 384-Bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: Performs exactly as it should.
Faster than my GTX 470
Got some cool games with it that I may not have time to play O.o
Very low-cost. I got it for ten dollars and three benjamins - amazing.

Cons: The unboxing event was a bit disappointing. Again, everything was there, but for a flagship videocard I expected more. Everything inside the box was brown pressure-formed cardboard. There was a rectangular cardboard spacer up against the video card because the molded cardboard carton was too large for it. Underneath was a low-height cardboard box containing all the accessories. It just screamed cost-cutting to me. In all fairness, I did get it at a great price. The included CD has just drivers on it - bleh.

Since it's not a FLEX card, I have to buy a ~40 dollar adapter to hook up a 3rd monitor. But I knew that going into this.

The fan shroud over the heatsinks is very flimsy. I kept trying to hold it by the PCB board because it felt as if I tried to hold the card's weight by gripping the shroud, it would break. This isn't easy to do as the card's shape is dominated by that plastic shroud.

I can live without the backplate, but it would rock have it there. More cost-cutting most likely.

Other Thoughts: In windows 8 I didn't even bother to uninstall the GeForce drivers before plugging this thing in. I fired up Windows, waited a few minutes for it to adjust to the new card, and then proceeded to use Windows as usual. I later downloaded and installed the latest stable AMD drivers and those also worked just as they should.

Despite what I've seen in various reports (and Sapphire's product page) this card does require 2 8-pin PCI-E connectors.

Photos don't do this card justice. When you hold it in your hands it is impressive. It was bigger than my GTX 470 by almost an inch and bumps up right against the hard drive cage.


Dale B.'s Profile

Display Name: Dale B.

Date Joined: 06/29/03

  • Reviews: 18
  • Helpfulness: 8
  • First Review: 06/22/07
  • Last Review: 06/18/13
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