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This review is from: Acer Chromebox CXI-2GKM Celeron 2957U (1.40GHz) 2GB DDR3L 16GB SSD Google Chrome OS
Pros: Small device, includes cheap but functional keyboard and mouse for about the same price as other Chromeboxes, lean OS, simple connectivity.
Cons: Surprisingly noisy. It seems there isn't really a fan profile that throttles the small, high RPM fan under light load. No matter the CPU load, it's always the same speed/noise level.
This unit just would not render 1080p resolution correctly. Connected to either an LCD monitor or my plasma TV (both native 1080p), text and graphics were blurry, with no options in ChromeOS to modify DPI scaling. The keyboard/login commands to get into "advanced" mode for the other Chromebox brands don't work on this Acer. For Kodi/OpenElec hackers, this unit would also be tougher to modify/upgrade (didn't try it on this unit since I wasn't happy with the noise level anyway). Since this was to be a HTPC/Streamer connected to my TV, the above 2 issues are deal breakers for me. I'll be getting an Asus as a replacement.
This review is from: SAMSUNG 840 Series 2.5" 120GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-7TD120BW
Pros: Wonderful speed in the real world, despite slow-ish write speeds in benchmarks. 100% reliable after several months now. Easily installed and formatted, but I did use Acronis to clone rather than the included software. Great price for the size from a reputable SSD manufacturer.
Cons: Not the fastest write speeds, but not something most users will notice in real usage.
Other Thoughts: There seems to be a lot of fear regarding the lifespan of the TLC flash chips, but several review sites have torture tested these drives and came up with an estimated lifespan of close to 20 years (at least for the 250GB drive) under average usage. Since computer years are like dog years, that's like worrying that your refrigerator won't still be working in 2153...READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Low price, installation not difficult if you are familiar with finding wall studs or using drywall anchors.
Cons: The ball joint used to position the monitor is extremely weak and loose, and does not tighten. My monitor looks like it's hanging it's head in shame, and it won't stay turned to the side without rotating axially.
Other Thoughts: If it's on special, it might be worth the price. If you know you will need to have this tilted in a certain angle, I'd look elsewhere. It won't stay where you want it.READ FULL REVIEW