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David B.

David B.

Joined on 04/18/03

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 5
Most Favorable Review

Best Motherboard setup I have ever had

MSI PERFORMANCE GAMING X470 GAMING PRO CARBON AM4 AMD X470 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
MSI PERFORMANCE GAMING X470 GAMING PRO CARBON AM4 AMD X470 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard

Pros: I have been building my own computers since the 386sx/16. I have typically gone with Gigabyte and MSI motherboards. I usually go with the bottom tier boards as the higher models just offer useless upgrades. I decided to go for this model because it had the upgraded Realtek sound chip AND upgraded sound components. What a difference this has made, it is literally like night and day sound quality. My old MSI board had the lowest tier Realtek chip and I noticed a huge difference in the sound. Setup wise, this board was very easy to install and get going. I experienced no problems whatsoever, there was no fiddling with the bios to get something to work. Literally just plugged everything in and it worked first boot. This has never been the case for me in the past, there has always been a fight with some component, like the RAM not running at the proper speed, or a HD that won't be recognized, etc. Components I used: - Ryzen7 2700x - G-Skill Ripjaws 3200 (2 x 8GB) - MSI 1070 Ti Titanium - Corsair H75 Water - Various SSD's and 1 Sata HD

Cons: None whatsoever. The only board I have used where everything worked on the first boot.

Overall Review: Tips: - You DO NOT NEED a power supply with 2 8-pin plugs. This motherboard has 2 8-pin plugins but you ONLY need to plug 1 in to the board. (Most of you, like me, will have a PSU that only has 1 8-pin, unless you just upgraded). To be clear, you only need to plug in the 24 pin and 1 8-pin. - This should go without saying, but ALWAYS go to the MSI website and download the latest Bios and drivers right from the site, never use the disk in the box. - I recommend HWiNFO64 (open source monitor) over the Command center from MSI. It is far more robust and accurate. (Command center will report your CPU temperature higher than what it actually is)

Most Critical Review

Great Card but overpriced

MSI GeForce GTX 1070 Ti 8GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 SLI Support ATX Video Card GTX 1070 Ti Titanium 8G
MSI GeForce GTX 1070 Ti 8GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 SLI Support ATX Video Card GTX 1070 Ti Titanium 8G

Pros: - I specifically choose the Titanium model because it has the upgraded version "ii" of the cooling. And yes, it works quite well. HWiNFO64 reports that the highest temperature I have ever reached is 72 C. - Noticeably faster and cooler than my old MSI 970 - Very quiet card. I cannot tell when the fans are running full speed. They turn on once temp goes above 60 but I can't hear them. My Corsair water cooler fans make more noise than the card, and they aren't that loud.

Cons: - Pricing (- 3 stars). Prices have come down but even at sub $500 prices I do not feel like a 1070 Ti is worth almost 500 dollars. My 970 was less than $400 and it was an OC upgraded version. From a gamers perspective this card is simply not worth what I paid for it, over the past 10 years this kind of money would have bought me a top tier card. Although this is a great card in terms of speed, cooling, and quietness, it is not worth the asking price.

Overall Review: Be aware that this card is pretty heavy compared to other 1070 ti's. The Titanium model from MSI has the biggest heat sink of all the models they carry. My MSI x470 Carbon Pro motherboard came with steel reinforcements on the PCI slot. On my old motherboard I am pretty sure this card would sag in the system due to it's weight. If you have an upright system just be aware this card is quite heavy.

Quality Ram for Ryzen

G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 3200 (PC4 25600) Intel XMP 2.0 Desktop Memory Model F4-3200C14D-16GVR
G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 3200 (PC4 25600) Intel XMP 2.0 Desktop Memory Model F4-3200C14D-16GVR

Pros: - installed in MSI x470 Carbon Pro. 2 x 8GB - worked instantly using XMP setting in Bios. Runs at 1600 (3200) MHz without issue - handles stress testing without errors

Cons: Price is a little higher than I like

Overall Review: If you are building a Ryzen system, do not go cheap on the RAM. Ryzen's strength over an intel system is the memory lanes. Leverage that advantage to the fullest by putting high speed RAM in your board.

Awesome SSD

SAMSUNG 840 Pro Series 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-7PD128BW
SAMSUNG 840 Pro Series 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-7PD128BW

Pros: - 5X as fast as the WD Cav I replaced - Windows 8 boots incredibly fast, the POST screen takes longer than the OS boot time now - makes the whole system feel more zippy. - On a MSI Z68A MB I got 504 MB/s Seq read time. (compared to 3 year old WD with 93 MB/s)

Cons: - wish I had of opted for the higher capacity now. May have to pawn this one off on wife and buy a higher GB one. I'll easily use up 35 GB on modded Skyrim alone. - Samsung could have included some basic tips in the install guide to optimize the install.

Overall Review: This was my first SSD so here's some wisdom I've gleaned for others who are buying their first SSD: - Set your HDD mode to ACHI mode in the bios BEFORE you install the OS. IDE mode slows this drive down. You have to do this before you install the OS. - Make sure you plug the SATA cable into a SATA III Intel port for best results, and download the latest chipset drivers from your motherboards site. - If you are running Win7 or Win8 you DO NOT need a TRIM program. The OS does this for you, so you won't be able to install the TRIM program that comes with the drive, nor do you need it. - If you are doing the Win7 to Win8 upgrade path do not forget to use Disk Cleanup and scan again with the "Clean System Files" option. Then select the old OS to clean up the old Win7 folder. This will free up at least 13 GB+. - You can also set the location of your libraries to a different drive in explorer. I moved everything except for game saves. (for example I have no need to SSD "my music" folder) - For reference After installing Win8, drivers, basic programs, and cleaning the drive I had 100 GB of free space. If you're a gamer that will fill up fast. Like I said, after I'm done modding Skyrim that will probably eat 35GB+ right there. Probably more once I get my new video card at xmas. - Consider getting the 256GB or higher model, I wish I had of.

Awesome Monitor for the price

Acer S231HLbid Black 23" 5ms HDMI  LED-Backlight LCD monitor  Slim Design  250 cd/m2 ACM 12,000,000:1 (1000:1)
Acer S231HLbid Black 23" 5ms HDMI LED-Backlight LCD monitor Slim Design 250 cd/m2 ACM 12,000,000:1 (1000:1)

Pros: - Screen is very bright in a good way. - Minimal bleeding around the edge, and I mean minimal as in hardly noticeable - No stuck or dead pixels - Haven't noticed any ghosting in any of the games I play - Monitor is surprisingly light, but has a very stable stand. Contrary to other reviews the stand does tilt. Just hold the base with one hand and use the other to tilt the monitor - Unlike other monitors I've owned this one comes with an HDMI and DVI cable in the box. - Bought this monitor solely to play games on and I'm very pleased with it's performance. - Is LED so this monitor throws absolutely no heat whatsoever. Even after being on for hours the top is completely cool to the touch.

Cons: - Not really a con but you will need to fiddle with the controls a bit to get a nice color ratio. Using an EVGA GTX 560i and connected using the mini-HDMI port to the monitor I found that there was a HUGE difference by going into the Nvidia Control panel and changing the format from "RGB" to "YCbCr444". The screen looks 100 times better making this change. On the "RBG" setting the colors look a little washed out.

Overall Review: I felt this was a safe buy for me. I've owned 2 other ACER LCD's and never had any problems. For the price I really don't think you can beat this and still get the same bright picture.