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BIOSTAR AM1MHP AM1 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: more than 1 year

5 out of 5 eggs Great little board for an HTPC - but watch the PCIe settings! 12/27/2015

This review is from: BIOSTAR AM1MHP AM1 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

Pros: Super low power for the capability - see OTHER for power numbers and hardware config. Easy install, there were no driver updates on their website (use included CD). Running W7Ux32 so I can run Beyond TV backend (old copy of BeyondTV). Also set up with Kodi 14, K-Lite mega codecs (HW decode), and plays HD MP4's fine even with 2 SD TV shows recording. Has legacy PCI slot as well as a large and a 1x PCIe slots. Used PCI for an old Hauppauge ATSC video capture card, and the PCIe 1x slot for a Haupauge Colossus HD card.

Plays HD movies in Kodi fine using hardware decoding. Did not try software decoding as that offloads onto the CPU. If you need more CPU power, get an Intel system. For video: AMD.

I am very pleased with this HTPC system. A NUC might have lower power, but does not have PCI/PCIe slots. Would also fair well as a file server (not sure what network speed you would get though), and it would make a decent entry level / basic desktop machine. Not a machine for power users.

Cons: - It was a bear to get Beyond TV going due to problems with Windows Media Center being installed (my goof). Who knew that would be a problem.
- Video capture cards would fail after only a few minutes. It turned out to be "No snooping" and low data charge in PCI settings on bios. Disable No Snoop and crank up the data charge level to 4096 bytes.

Other Thoughts: HW config (all from Newegg):
AM1MHP with Athlon 5350 CPU
4G 1600 G.Skill RAM (discontinued)
SeaSonic 80Plus Gold 360W PSU SSR-360GP (big part of making this low power)
Samsung 850 EVO 256G for boot drive
WD Red 4TB for video recording
Haupauge 500M PCI dual video capture
Haupauge Colossus PCIe single HD video capture

Since I am using this as an HTPC, it stays on continuously. With just the main board running W7Ux32, it idles at 18.6W at the plug using a Rosewill power meter! That means with on all year round, is only uses about ~$26 of electricity including air-conditioning power adder. With the video cards and WD Red drive added, it idles around 27-29W. Woohoo! The AMD 780 system this replaced would idle at 132W.

I might get another one and try MythTV ...

100W High power Led flood light with IP65 water proof outdoor landscape light
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

1 out of 5 eggs It's a fixer-upper! No good. 09/10/2014

This review is from: 100W High power Led flood light with IP65 water proof outdoor landscape light

Pros: Good specs but doesn't meet them.

Cons: (1) First problem is that it does not come with a line cord. Just a stripped wire. Not even an IEC-320 connector (like on your PC). I got one and found that secondly, the drivers / ballasts inside are only rated to 220V nominal, and these would not start correctly at 120V in. They flash over and over. The case on one of the ballasts is attached backwards so the input and output lead markings are reversed. But they did wire the ballast correctly, probably following the wire colors. Could not get any answer from the vendor. Would not recommend.

Other Thoughts: It has good construction, but they goofed on the ballast rating. I may see if I can find 120V LED drivers myself.

VANTEC NexStar HX4R NST-640S3R-BK Aluminum / Plastic 3.5
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: Nice unique design that looks good and performs well. I have two now and both are working well. The first had a few hiccups getting set up but I figured it out digging more through the documentation. One unit has 4 x WD Red 4TB drives in a RAID 5 array to back up a RAID 6 system. Transfers are around 110MB/s read, writing is a bit slower but still around 90MB/s. Once the pecularities where figured out, it set up fairly easily. See my WD Red review for problems I had with those.

Cons: Documentation is ok but not clear to follow. I had droppouts like others did but I figured out it was my USB 3.0 cable and case plug (the USB 3.0 cable is a poor design). Used cardboard to jam cable forcing better connection. Problems stopped after that. Not an issue with the Vantec box, but many people are citing problems that are related to other hardware and not the Vantec design.

Other Thoughts: Once I got these going, I have been very happy. Hope they make a RAID 6 version with more than 4 drives sometime.


Charles M.'s Profile

Display Name: Charles M.

Date Joined: 05/31/05

  • Reviews: 14
  • Helpfulness: 5
  • First Review: 07/28/05
  • Last Review: 12/27/15
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