Date Joined: 08/06/04
Pros: My first card failed in less than a month. XFX replaced the card in a very timely manner, with no hassle at all, and the replacement has been excellent! Thermals are spot on, sound is great all around, and performance is exactly what you would expect from a mid-range card in this price range.
Cons: First card died within a month and had to be replaced, but XFX's customer service was great to deal with.
Overall Review: It is frustrating having to deal with a card replacement, but the entire process is made much easier by great customer service. A lot of companies nowadays have lackluster customer service, but thankfully XFX is not one of those.
Pros: The case is easily large enough for our build and can handle decent sized coolers/video cards.
Semi Modular design (some flaws in this area, see cons)
Very well made, excellent fit and finish.
Removable front grill, which doesn't require removing the entire front shroud, is something other manufacturers should start doing. We love this aspect of the case. It makes cleaning the grill and fan work much easier.
Plenty of working room for cable management. We had zero issues in this area. Cable management was very easy.
Worked well for modding, in our situation. We removed the top panel, cut out a rectangle, and added an acrylic window with a 140 mm fan port in order to get better exhausting capabilities and an extra view into the case.
Cons: While I knew that the case would not include any of the optional drive cages, I couldn't believe it did not include hardware to mount the HDD cage that was included in the optional positions. The thumb screws that are included for both the HDD and SSD cages are not suitable for attaching the drive cage to the optional positions on the Motherboard tray. We tried using the other included hardware, but the thread isn't a match and therefore wouldn't snug up enough for me to be confident in the mounting. We remedied this by using some other thumb screws we had on hand, but the hardware should be included for all options available to the parts that are in the box. I shouldn't have to dig through my existing parts bin to make your options function. That is a silly oversight, Cooler Master. =)
The manual. That is literally all that can be said about what they deem to be the manual. It is just a con, period.
Overall Review: I bought this case knowing exactly what we were getting in regards to the number of fans that can be installed, but it should be noted that there is only one exhaust fan point in the entire case. I prefer negative pressure cases (I don't mind cleaning my case on a regular basis) and that required modding the case to handle a 140 mm fan in the top. I wanted to try my hand at adding a top window as the build will sit below where the user is seated and this allows the lights to be viewed from above, so this was not a huge issue in my situation. The end result is amazing and I doubt I could be much happier about a case within this price range. This case is really a good value for the money, especially if you catch it on sale.
Pros: The Router ran great, although much hotter than I anticipated, for about eight months. Setup was fairly simple. The UI leaves a bit to be desired as it is not the greatest English, but it is definitely usable by anyone who has a fairly good understanding of networking.
Cons: It only ran for eight months. I woke up one morning and the wireless access was still functioning, but the WAN port shot craps so my wireless devices could access the router, but not the internet. All of the LEDs were dead on the LAN and WAN ports except one that lit up green constantly, even when nothing was connected. I RMA'd the device. The process seemed to go smoothly and only took roughly ten days to return it to ASUS and receive it back. However, nothing changed when I received it back. The device is still broken. I paid for shipping one way to basically have it shipped back to me without any explanation of what was done to it, only to receive it back in the exact same condition that I sent it in. The RMA tracking feature that ASUS provides with your RMA number stated that the device was repaired, but nothing more. This is about as bad as customer support gets. I refuse to pay again to ship it back as I feel that ASUS has essentially taken my money and will ask me to pay for shipping back once again for a second attempt at an RMA. No, thanks. I will be purchasing a new router this evening and chalk this up to an expensive lesson learned.
Pros: When it worked, for a grand total of five days, and once I upgraded the firmware and had access to the updated genie, it had a nice Admin UI. The throughput on wired connections was excellent.
Cons: Absolutely terrible reception on both bands. We lost WiFi in two rooms of our house after "upgrading" to this from a WRT54G. The setup at first was a nightmare. I had to factory reset the router to get it to accept and hold any settings, although I suspect this was a fluke. It lasted a grand total of five days. I came home this evening and it was dead and will not power on anymore. After spending the time to set this router up and then do the same for each of my devices, this is completely unacceptable. Thankfully, I still have my old WRT54G to lean on until I find a replacement.
Pros: Great features for a standard user, excellent price, easy installation and setup.
Cons: The board worked flawlessly for ten months then the ATX12V connection started causing the machine to not boot. When I unplug the ATX12V connection from the Power Supply, the machine will boot, but without ATX12V peripheral power. I tested multiple Power Supplies to ensure that the board was in fact the culprit.
Overall Review: I bought this mobo to install in a build for a friend. This was my first ECS purchase and it has left a very bad taste in my mouth. I will attempt to RMA the faulty board I have and that process will determine if I ever purchase anything else from ECS.
Pros: This cable improved the sound quality from my DVD player far more than I ever expected to be possible. Excellent purchase!
Pros: This RAM is excellent given the price. With six different sticks of this RAM I have not had a single issue.
Cons: None whatsoever.
Overall Review: There is no issue with Vista and 3GB of RAM upon installation. I had 8GB installed during my Vista installation and had no issues whatsoever.
Pros: On the fly DPI changes that occur pretty much instantly, great ergonomics for a gaming mouse, extremely well built, great non-slip surface that doesn't start feeling like a sponge after hours of gaming, wicked user interface, installed without a single hitch, and overall awesome looks.
Cons: If you are right handed and plan on using the buttons on the right side of the mouse, good luck. They are terribly difficult to get to for me.
Overall Review: This mouse is definitely a gaming mouse, but I have been using it for all of my daily routines as well and have absolutely no complaints about comfort or usability.
Pros: This motherboard, as with every ASRock I have owned in the past, runs stable, has a great, easy to use BIOS, and has handled everything I have thrown at it without a single issue thus far.
Cons: Being a single chip style NVidia chipset mobo, the NVidia chipset runs extremely hot with the stock heatsink. I replaced the heatsink with a Thermaltake Exterme Spirit II cooler and the temps dropped drastically! Placement of the 20-
pin power connector on the mobo could definitely be better. Both of these issues are rather minute in comparison to the overall functionality of the mobo.
Pros: Extremely well built PSU. I was rather surprised by this considering it has a cage type case. The PSU feels very solid and heavy, and the fan is beyond my hearing range with the box sitting about three feet away from me. Another nice feature is that the fan continues to run even after you shut your machine down. It has excellent molex connectors and plenty of every type, the cables are sleeved and plenty long enough for a standard case.
Cons: None, unless you consider the fact that it is not modular to be a con.
Pros: This monitor is alot nicer than I expected it to be. It has absolutely no problems playing high FPS games and the display quality is just outright amazing on both D-sub and DVI! It has a small compartment in the rear to keep your cables stowed away neatly which is nice. The OSD is easy to use and understand and has plenty of options and the buttons on the front panel do not feel flimsy like other LCD monitors I have owned in the past. The monitor housing and stand are great quality as well. I am very impressed.
Cons: The speakers are definitely not the best, but I had no intentions of using them anyhow.
Pros: Works just fine for my ASRock Mobo!
Cons: None so far.