Joined on 10/24/04
The Cheapest Rackmount High-Density Storage Case money can buy
Pros: - Price -Features at this price point -Easy compatibility with normal ATX parts -No unnecessary frills -Simple layout and included cooling more than you need for low power storage configurations -front panel USB for diagnostics -Perfect for a large FreeNAS array if you're a data hoarder like myself
Cons: -A few sharp edges on the fan grills and on the power supply mount -The power supply mount on the new version fits extremely tightly to the bottom of the case. I had to loosen the back ATX power supply mount (you'll need a tube screwdriver for 3 of the PSU mount screws that are hard to get to) and remove the sticker from the side of the PSU in order to mount it to the case. Maybe keep a dremel on hand in order to widen the screw holes for your PSU just in case. -new case design no longer features redundant molex for the use of a redundant power supply.
Overall Review: This case now comes with a 3 120mm fan middle wall (the fan hotswap bays are colored hunter orange!) instead of the old four and a 12Gb/s backplane (still SFF8087). I have one of the old and new model. The new model is considerably quieter but the drive trays are noticeably flimsier, however they work just as well as the ones on the old case. Many people will complain about blown backplanes and blown drives due to this case but most of these issues are traced back to bad Molex connectors/connections. Get a good power supply and note that the Molex power to each of the six backplanes is upside-down from the normal molex configuration.
Cheap alternative to a new TV
Pros: No Power needed* (see below) nice little remote
Cons: *Probably one of the most interesting pieces of electronics I have even had the pleasure of screwing with. Nothing before this little device has done so many strange things. Firstly, the trick to this device and it's the thing they don't tell you since it's ASSUMED, is that you need at least 2 devices POWERED ON and connected to this switch at all times for it to work, since it pulls power from the HDMI connections. If you have a computer connected to this via a hdmi->dvi converter cable and you try to buy an AC adapter to plug into this you may notice that your graphics card fries or in my case your computer just doesn't turn off no matter if the power is connected or not (two fans in my case mysteriously would spin when the machine was off). ONLY buy an AC adapter if no actual HDMI connections are being made to it.
Overall Review: In my case, as many of you may have found out, the solution is to fill all 3 ports with a device, 2 of which provide constant power. Or you could buy a real AV receiver or a new TV and skip all this nonsense. Your choice.
A Great Video Card for my SFF build
Pros: 2024Mhz Boost Clock at 64c in Unigen Valley using gigabyte's overclocking tool without even trying. No Throttling. Did I mention the total system draw with a 6700k is under 300 watts?
Cons: Doesn't hide Pokemon GO players when I go outside. Hopefully they'll be some good enough games to play so I don't have to. LED options are slim, thankfully they can be turned off in software. Dear PC manufacturers, I want to build a computer not a mini rave diorama.
Overall Review: This card is a standard height, standard width card with an OC and will fit in most SFF cases that support full sized graphics cards. Also, it only requires a 500w power supply so many SFX PSUs are supported.
Great Drives. Great Packaging.
Pros: These drives are very quiet, and while slower than 7200rpm drives are not terribly bad when reading and writing over a network at ~1Gb/s
Cons: None yet. Some hard drives die, but that's why you build redundant arrays
Overall Review: I'm tired of all the stories about dead drives from newegg due to bad shipping. Note that given the volume these drives are sold at, there's about 100 happy customers that post nothing compared to the 1 that's had a problem with a drive and writes a wall of text on this item.
Pros: There's really only one thing that matters in a motherboard. Does it POST? The answer, thankfully, is YES. This is what you call a no-frills board, however it has many features I can't even find on much more expensive boards. It's six port usb3 controller was the most stand-out feature.
Cons: the uEFI bios is clunky, my mouse really doesn't work at all in it. Not that I'd ever use my mouse in a bios screen, but still.
Overall Review: Ever since a few years ago, "gaming" motherboards have turned into some sort of artsy sideshow in the computer world. It seems they all need fancy heat sinks and matching colors that nobody will ever see, and features that nobody will ever use like special overclock monitoring or mouse ports. This board has none of these things and instead focuses on best features for the price. Biostar has really earned my respect and is building a reputation for solid products.
Pros: This is a stock card with an aftermarket cooler and a factory Overclock, which is a really nice combination. It's installed, and working considerably well considering it was just recently released. The cooler is sturdy, which surprised me since it's a plastic cooler. Plastic coolers tend to be lighter and not weigh on the card's pci-e slot, but also tend to be flimsy, but this one is not. Runs very cool and no detectable coil whine at load.
Cons: Stable driver version was very unstable. Upgraded to the beta version and it's rock solid. Go figure. No included Displayport or DVI to HDMI converter.
Overall Review: If these cards ever become widely available in either 670 or 660 form they'll be super easy on power and super fast. Nvidia has a winner here, and gigabyte's cooler makes it that much better. Trying to get a 600 series for now however is going to be seriously expensive or require serious luck on newegg.