Joined on 07/15/03
Solid Z68 Board
Pros: Lots of features. 8x USB 2.0 and 2 USB 3.0. HDMI. Plenty of PCI E x1 slots. Spacing between both PCI E x16 and x8 slots is ideal for SLI/Xfire setups. Lots of overclocking options.
Cons: Possibly a Con for some but as mentioned by other reviewers, the SATA ports are side-facing instead of towards you. This is ideal if you have a case similar to the HAF 932, where the drive bays are loaded from the side, instead of the front of the case. I'm not sure if that made any sense at all, so I appolgize. If you're familiar with the 932 then you know what I'm talking about. And now my specs... i7 2600K Corsair H60 cooler HAF 932 full tower 16GB Kingston Hyper X (4 x 4GB DDR3 1600) Seagate Momentus XT 500 GB hybrid Seagate Barracuda 1 TB Hdd PNY GTX 480 SB X-Fi Fatality Pro Samsung 24" LCD display @ 1920 x1200
Overall Review: This was my first Intel build, and my first Gigabyte motherboard. My previous pc was a Phenom II 975 on an MSI 890FX board. AMD has always been my first choice for gaming pc's, simply due to the price/performance ratio. This all changed with Sandy Bridge. Not only do I have a pc that is at the same level as an i7 970 (stock speeds), but I was able to do it under $600. Also worth noting, my new Intel setup blows away my AMD build, to say the least! =) The GA-Z68XP-UD3P gives you alot of options and features that you might normally find on a higher end board, for a lot less money. If you're an AMD fan looking to get in on Sandy Bridge, this is the perfect board to do so.
Pros: 5.1 surround THX certified Easy installation via usb Great for laptop users
Cons: Poor construction. Not as many configuration options as a true internal X-Fi soundcard. Sound quality seems to degrade after a while.
Overall Review: Why I bought this: I ran out of room on my mobo trying to run two 6970's in crossfire, so I picked this up as a replacement for my Fatality pro soundcard. Sound quality was great, right out of the box. Blu ray's and games sounded great as well. Then about two weeks into my purchase, the unit started producing horrible static. I brought it back to the store and got a replacement, which also did the same exact thing after 3 weeks of use. I tried full uninstall/reinstalls and ran driversweeper to verify nothing was left behind. Same results - heavy static. I tried using an optical cable instead of the audio cables, and got the same thing. I decided to eat the cost, and use my mobo's onboard sound. (which isn't bad, its just not an X-Fi) Maybe it was just my luck of the draw so your experience may be different. However, I can only report what I've experienced, which was sorely dissapointing.
Budget X99 Board
Pros: 8 x SATA 3 ports 8 x USB 3.0 ports Easy to use BIOS Supports up to 128GB of Memory System specs: i7 5930k @ 4.4ghz MSI X99S SLI Plus CM Nepton 280L Cooler 16GB Corsair DDR4 2800 2 x EVGA GTX 980 ACX in SLI Sound Blaster Z sound card Antec 1200 PSU
Cons: -PCI E spacing is very cramped -Missing additional XMP profiles from the BIOS. However the included MSI Live Update software easily updated the bios to 1.5, which fixed the issue.
Overall Review: It's been almost a week and so far its been a good experience with this motherboard. I got this board as part of a combo deal, and I have to say this is probably the easiest build I've done so far. The SLI Plus seamlessly identified my cpu, overclocked it to 4.4ghz via OC Genie, and even managed to properly clock my DDR4 2800 Ram correctly even though the XMP profile was missing. In addition to two graphics cards I also use a dedicated sound card that uses a PCI-E 1x slot. However because the two slots are directly underneath the top two PCI E x16 slots, I had to run my graphics card on slot 1 and slot 3. Which means only one card is running at x 16 and the other is at x 8. To be honest, I hardly notice a difference in performance, so I can't really deduct an egg for that. Overall, this is a great board for anyone looking to jump on the 2011-3 bandwagon, without totally breaking the bank.
Samsung 840 Evo 1TB
Pros: -Fast...Really really fast... -Good price considering where these 1TB SSD's were priced at a couple of years ago.
Cons: -3 Year warranty. Fortunately Newegg provides in addition to the manufacture's warranty, a data recovery option for up to 3 years. -RAPID mode requires firmware update.
Overall Review: I was running out of space on my 500gb hybrid drive, and decided to go with an SSD. As others have mentioned, the drive is very fast. Enough people have posted benchmark results so I wont bother, except to say that my own benchmark results were pretty much in line with what reviewer Jeremy C got. I realize most people generally don't care about the Windows Experience Index but I thought I'd share my results anyway. Before installing the drive, my windows score was 5.8. I'm now getting a 7.8 with the drive scoring 7.9. I find this slightly amusing considering the fact that it was my cpu that scored a 7.8... a six core i7 3930k clocked to 4.5ghz... My setup: Asus Rampage IV Extreme ROG i7 3930k 32GB Kingston Hyper X DDR3 1600 2 x EVGA 780 ACX SB Z Antec 1200W psu CM HAF 932 full tower
Pros: Great laptop for gaming/leisure. Decent display. Good price for a 2nd gen i5 processor and GT 540M dedicated graphics card. Keyboard is nice and spacious, and also comes with a num pad. Laptop stays pretty cool even after long periods of graphic intensive use. Comes with two USB-2.0 ports and one USB-3.0, and an HDMI output.
Cons: No back-lit keyboard. Like others have said, bloatware is annoying, but not unmanageable.
Overall Review: I bought this to replace an aging XPS 1330 laptop. I needed one capable of gaming on the go, and this does it perfectly. No it won't push 100fps in Crysis 2 but it will play it at a tolerable frame rate. Battlefield 3, MW3 and SWTOR all play at decent frame rates, considering that this is a laptop under $700. Just Cause 2 benched at 22.46 fps with AA at x2. (Concreate Jungle run) To boost performance, I replaced the 5400RPM 500GB drive and got a 256GB Sata 3 SSD and bumped the memory from 4GB 1066 DDR3 to 8GB 1333 DDR3, and noticed a sizeable gain in overal performance. Deffinetly worth every penny. Considering that there are other machines with similar specs as the Aspire, and are anywhere between $800 to $1300, this is laptop is a steal. Highly recommended!!!!
Pros: Dual gpu card. 4GB GDDR5. DVI and 4x mini display ports make it an ideal choice for multi monitor display setups. Overclock switch offers even more performance if desired. I've owned a lot of graphics cards (Newegg can attest to that) and this is easily the most powerful card I've ever owned. Your pretty much guaranteed you'll be able to run any game present and future at their highest settings.
Cons: $729 may seem like an aweful lot of money to drop on a graphics card, but this isn't your average grahics card. Besides if you want Lamborghini performance, you'll have to be willing to pony up more than the price of a Hyundai. System specs: i7 2600k @ 4.2Ghz 16GB DDR3 1600 Corsair H60 cpu cooler XFX 6990 1x Seagate Momentux XT 500gb 1x Seagate 1Tb hdd X-Fi Fatalit Pro Antec 1200 psu HAF 932 Full tower
Overall Review: You already know this card is large and can be loud. What you wanna know is "Is this thing worth my $729 bucks?" I can answer that for you. YES. If your looking for a powerful gpu solution on one card, this is it. Yes the GTX 590 is quiet, can also perform decently and offers cool bells and whistles like Physx, but its a eunuch compared to this thing. With a flip of a switch, you can clock this baby near 6970 crossfire speeds. Metro 2033 went from 28fps with my GTX 480 to averaging 58fps. BFBC2 gets close to 130fps. (Both games run at 1920 x 1200 on High/Very High) 3DMark Vantage hit a gpu score of 34856. I haven't tried 3DMark 2011 or Unigine Heaven yet as I just got this thing 4 days ago, but I imagine they'll stomp my old scores into oblivion. The card fit perfectly into my HAF 932 case with plenty of room to spare. And as far as the fan goes, honestly this thing is no louder than my PNY GTX 480. Absolutely love this card.
Item was shipped to the wrong address. (item was sent to Michigan, while I live in MA) I spoke with their customer service and they did refund my account, and sent out another headset adapter to the correct address. Item arrived within a couple business days.