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Mark C.

Mark C.

Joined on 02/18/04

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 9
Most Favorable Review

Solid POE switch

ZyXEL ES1100-8P Unmanaged 8-port Switch with 4 PoE port
ZyXEL ES1100-8P Unmanaged 8-port Switch with 4 PoE port

Pros: Others below have covered the overall features much better than I, but this is a really solid 4 port POE (+ 4 ports non-POE) switch. Never had any problems with it so far, and it's been powering several devices non-stop since it was first turned on 6 months ago or so.

Cons: Would have been nice for all the ports to be POE (or even better, POE+), and for gigabit support, but that'd be just wishful thinking for this price range.

Overall Review: For what it is, this is a really good switch. There seems to be some confusion about what this actually is though, and some of that is Newegg's fault for the misleading description, while others have only themselves to blame for not doing the research beforehand. POE is designed for powering devices 15.4W or less (such as phones, IP cameras, etc), so pretty much all switches larger than 5 ports are out right off the bat, since most of them use more than that. Take a Kill-a-Watt & see what kind of power usage the devices you'd hope to power via POE have, and you'd be surprised just how much sometimes. If you really want to power a device that uses more power than 15W, you can always look into getting a POE+ switch, an updated standard that adds a little extra juice to 25.5W per port, and a POE+ Splitter (takes the POE cable, and separates the power & data into two lines for non-POE enabled devices).

Rock solid!

OEM Production 2550L2D-MxPC Intel NM10 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System
OEM Production 2550L2D-MxPC Intel NM10 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System

Pros: dual GigE, low power usage (my Kill-a-Watt reads around 30W usage at the plug), pfsense compatible, high performance (compared to consumer routers, other PCs would be a different story). It's also got plenty of USB ports (if you need that, I didn't personally) and HDMI, which ought to play some decent video (but since it's outside the scope of my project, I've never tested the HDMI).

Cons: little ability for expansion (I wish it had a PCI/PCI-e slot for an additional NIC).

Overall Review: I bought this with the intention of setting up pfSense at home. pfSense set up without a hitch (I used a CF to SATA adapter w/ an 8GB CF card), and save for one reboot (an extended power outage that outlasted my UPS), this has been up solid 24/7 since its initial configuration. Previous to this, I was using a WNDR-3700 wireless router (a fairly powerful router, as consumer routers go), and the before & after testing was impressive. I had a 15% boost in bandwidth performance when testing with speedtest.net. No matter what tests I threw at it, I never got more than 10% CPU utilization between all 4 cores (well, 2 cores w/ hyperthreading). My only wish is that it had expansion options for a 3rd NIC so that I could add a second LAN (to segregate my home personal devices from my work devices).

Great MythTV PXEBoot box!

Zotac ZBOX-ID41-U Intel NM10 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System
Zotac ZBOX-ID41-U Intel NM10 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System

Pros: -Good specs: NVidia ION 2nd Generation, dual core Atom w/ Hyperthreading, HDMI, Gig Ethernet. -Nice to see 4 cores in the playback stats on MythTV. -Paired with 2GB DDR3 SODIMM, and handles hi-def videos beautifully

Cons: The specs on here indicate that there was some wireless capacity built into this device; however, when I opened it up to install the RAM, I didn't see any (though it does appear to have a slot to accept one). It doesn't matter to me though, since I'm not using wireless, but just letting others know what I've noticed. This came with the August 2012 version of the BIOS, which has a known bug with WOL (the nic doesn't stay active to receive the magic packets). Research suggests that upgrading to the Nov 2012 BIOS update will fix the problem, but I haven't had the chance to upgrade it yet. I did let it sit in the HW monitor in the BIOS for an hour or two, and the CPU crept up to & leveled off at about 50C. A little higher than I'd like, but well within the max thermal limit of 100C for Atom processors (BIOS has values ranging from 90C - 110C for automatic thermal shutdown, I chose 90C).

Overall Review: I used this box to set up a MythTV frontend that PXEboots (boots from the network--no hard drive). I already have another Zotac product (NVidia ION 1st gen) acting as another PXEbooted frontend elsewhere in my house, and this was for a second TV. I have a couple of videos that play perfectly on my first one that came up with strange artifacts on this box. The only variable between the two frontends is the frontends themselves (they PXEboot from the same server, use the same version of minimyth, and connect to the same mythtv backend), so I'm not sure what was causing the artifacts. But other than that, this box has been amazing! Will buy again when I have another TV that needs a mythtv frontend.

Love it!

Intel 622AN.HMWWB Wireless Adapter 6200 Centrino Advanced-N Mini PCI Express Up to 300Mbps Wireless Data Rates
Intel 622AN.HMWWB Wireless Adapter 6200 Centrino Advanced-N Mini PCI Express Up to 300Mbps Wireless Data Rates

Pros: -I bought this to replace the so-so broadcom in my Aspire One D260. What an improvement! Netstumbler now shows what used to be 3 & 4 bars now at 5, and picks up many wireless networks the broadcom could not. -Performance increased dramatically too--connected to the 5Ghz side of my WNDR3700 @300Mbps, and transferred a 7.5GB iso from my server in 23 minutes--used to take me almost an hour and a half. -Also noting that this does have full support in Backtrack Linux (the broadcom basically worked BTL too, but it didn't support monitor mode, this does).

Cons: No Bluetooth/GPS/3G?

Overall Review: I just want to point out that it is the duty of each purchaser to do at least some research on their purchases. Sometimes despite our best efforts, we still find ourselves receiving something we didn't expect, but you got to at least *try*. Furthermore, if you did make a mistake in your research, and purchase something for a purpose for which it was not intended, and it doesn't work, that is NOT the fault of the product! PLEASE don't mark something down because you didn't read all of the reviews, or do any research of your own.

An Excellent Router!

NETGEAR WNDR3700-100NAS V.5 Wireless Gigabit Open Source Router/ USB port Rangemax 2.4/5 GHz Simultaneous N600 Dual Band IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab
NETGEAR WNDR3700-100NAS V.5 Wireless Gigabit Open Source Router/ USB port Rangemax 2.4/5 GHz Simultaneous N600 Dual Band IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab

Pros: -Simultaneous Dual Band 2.4Ghz/5Ghz. -Ability to do guest wireless networks in both 2.4Ghz & 5Ghz with independent levels of encryption simultaneously with the primary wireless networks, giving you the ability to have 4 different SSIDs simultaneously with 4 different encryption standards, and 4 different passwords, with each band (2.4/5) able to do up to 300Mbps each. The guest networks are only allowed access to the WAN port/internet by default (can be changed). This guest feature is really cool, and nearly worth the extra $$$ by itself. -Haven't tried yet, but appears to be able to support any combination of IP Address block/subnet--all octets are editable for network & subnet -Can do WPA/WPA2 Enterprise -Can act as a wireless bridge or repeater, kinda a niche feature, but cool anyway

Cons: -Not really a con for the router, but my neighborhood is utterly saturated with wireless networks. A quick scan shows no less than 20 networks with at least 3 bars. That causes alot of interference, to which this router was not immune. This was the reason I went with a 5Ghz router. However, this router handled the interference considerably better than my old G router did--copying a 600MB ISO from PC to PC over the wireless on my old router yielded an average copy time of 20+ minutes. This router did it in 7 minutes -This is physically bigger than I thought it was (50% larger than my old router), but because it has a vertical stand, this was not a problem for me -I wish it had the option for external antennae, but I knew that going in -No option for WPA-PSK AES, only TKIP, but yet it has WPA2-PSK AES -Doesn't mask wireless passphrases in mgmt UI -UI uses frames, with a frame on the top for selecting a language that can't be removed

Overall Review: I have been looking for a good router for the better part of a year. Every time I was about to settle on one, I'd hear scathing reviews about how connections were always dropping, or firmware would cause major problems, etc. Sadly, most brands these days seem to have significant QA issues. I decided to take a chance on this one because it had very few negative reviews, and the positive reviews were encouraging. I've not been disappointed thus far! -Currently using Firmware version V1.0.4.31NA, it has a nice feature where it can automatically update the firmware when you login to the page, but I disabled it until I can confirm that another newer version of firmware works well. -Haven't tried attaching any USB devices to it yet, maybe one day

Excellent Router

NETGEAR WNDR3700-100NAS V.5 Wireless Gigabit Open Source Router/ USB port Rangemax 2.4/5 GHz Simultaneous N600 Dual Band IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab
NETGEAR WNDR3700-100NAS V.5 Wireless Gigabit Open Source Router/ USB port Rangemax 2.4/5 GHz Simultaneous N600 Dual Band IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab

Pros: -Simultaneous Dual Band 2.4Ghz/5Ghz. -Ability to do guest wireless networks in both 2.4Ghz & 5Ghz with independent levels of encryption simultaneously with the primary wireless networks, giving you the ability to have 4 different SSIDs simultaneously with 4 different encryption standards, and 4 different passwords, with each band (2.4/5) able to do up to 300Mbps each. The guest networks are only allowed access to the WAN port/internet by default (can be changed). This guest feature is really cool, and nearly worth the extra $$$ by itself. -Haven't tried yet, but appears to be able to support any combination of IP Address block/subnet--all octets are editable for network & subnet -Can do WPA/WPA2 Enterprise -Can act as a wireless bridge or repeater, kinda a niche feature, but cool anyway

Cons: -Not really a con for the router, but my neighborhood is utterly saturated with wireless networks. A quick scan shows no less than 20 networks with at least 3 bars. That causes alot of interference, to which this router was not immune. This was the reason I went with a 5Ghz router. However, this router handled the interference considerably better than my old G router did--copying a 600MB ISO from PC to PC over the wireless on my old router yielded an average copy time of 20+ minutes. This router did it in 7 minutes -This is physically bigger than I thought it was (50% larger than my old router), but because it has a vertical stand, this was not a problem for me -I wish it had the option for external antennae, but I knew that going in -No option for WPA-PSK AES, only TKIP, but yet it has WPA2-PSK AES -Doesn't mask wireless passphrases in mgmt UI -UI uses frames, with a frame on the top for selecting a language that can't be removed

Overall Review: I have been looking for a good router for the better part of a year. Every time I was about to settle on one, I'd hear scathing reviews about how connections were always dropping, or firmware would cause major problems, etc. Sadly, most brands these days seem to have significant QA issues. I decided to take a chance on this one because it had very few negative reviews, and the positive reviews were encouraging. I've not been disappointed thus far! -Currently using Firmware version V1.0.4.31NA, it has a nice feature where it can automatically update the firmware when you login to the page, but I disabled it until I can confirm that another newer version of firmware works well. -Haven't tried attaching any USB devices to it yet, maybe one day