Date Joined: 04/19/08
Pros: - Stable with XMP profile
- Dual-rank Micron dies
- Heatspreaders are effective and pretty
- No errors after 4 passes of Memtest86
Cons: - Timings could be tighter I guess, but this is fine
Overall Review: My PC has an Intel Core i5-7600K and an ASRock Fatal1ty Z270 ITX motherboard, and I didn't have any trouble getting it to boot or run at expected speeds. I was kinda surprised it was dual-rank, as single-rank seems to have recently become common on 16Gb sticks, but I'll take it.
Pros: I bought this on sale a couple years back, and I have about 15 CDs remaining. Haven't burned a single coaster. Pretty impressive, TDK.
Pros: Solid-built case. Not flashy. Simple enough to install parts inside. Plenty of places to install extra fans.
Cons: The included fans are somewhat noisy. The front panel takes a lot more than a "gentle pull" to take off, contrary to what the manual suggests. External drives don't line up with the bezel.
Cable management is very lacking. There is barely any space behind the MB tray, so you probably won't be able to route the 24-pin power through the back. There are not any holes above or below the motherboard. As a result, the cables were still a bit messy when I was through.
Pros: - Vibrant and accurate colors after calibration. You can calibrate it yourself or download an ICC profile. Google it.
- SUPER BRIGHT! The brightness on 100 is blinding in a dark room. I keep it on 60.
- Slim bezel and slick style.
- The stand adjustments are awesome. Lots of range to pull the monitor up and down, tilt it forward and backward, and even to rotate it to portrait mode. The stand moves smoothly in all directions, it never feels like you're forcing it.
- Works great for FPS gaming. I played Battlefield 3 with it and it looked gorgeous with no noticeable lag. Don't let the marketing fool you, you don't need a 2ms TN monitor for gaming.
- It has a built-in USB 2.0 hub, with two ports in the back and two on the left side.
- Dead simple to set up. Step 1: snap display into stand. That's it!
- Comes with a DVI cable!
Cons: - The 3H anti-glare coating is a little aggressive. You'll only notice if you look for it, though.
- 16:10 would have been nice. I'm not complaining though. My previous monitor was 1280x1024.
Overall Review: I would have bought three of these if I had the cash.
Pros: Note: I play games at 720p due to my seriously outdated monitor, which is next on my upgrade list.
Runs nearly any game I throw at it at 60fps. It's nice to be able to ignore system requirements when I buy a new game on Steam. Even BF3 runs smooth on Ultra at 60fps, but then again, I am playing at 720p. I suspect I'd need to turn down the AA at 1080p.
The card was well protected in the packaging with a plastic clamshell, and installation in my PC was easy. Currently running nVidia drivers 306.97, and I haven't gotten any driver crashes at all.
Cons: Fan noise is somewhat high-pitched at speeds above 40%. I built my PC for silence, and this GPU is the noisiest part by far. It'd be nice if I could just power off the 660 Ti when I'm not gaming and use my CPU's HD 4000 graphics to reduce noise and power usage, but alas, PCs don't work that way.
Due to the short PCB, the PCIe power ports are on the front side of the card. My PSU's cables reached, but a build I did for a friend last week (with this same card) had a PSU whose cables couldn't reach far enough when we routed them through the cable management area.
Overall Review: System specs:
Intel Core i5-3570K
ASRock Z77 Extreme4
8GB DDR3-1600 Corsair Vengeance
EVGA GTX 660 Ti 2GB SC
1TB Samsung 7200RPM HDD, 250GB Seagate 7200RPM HDD
Cooler Master Silencio 550
Antec TruePower New 550W
Pros: Runs fast and stable at 1600 9-9-9-24 @ 1.35v with the XMP profile.
Heat-spreaders are short enough to clear a Noctua cooler, and they look good doing it.
8GB is plenty for just about anyone. And it comes with Corsair reliability and their lifetime warranty.
Cons: The white heat-spreaders clash with my black/gold motherboard, but that's not really a con; I knew I was buying white RAM. I wanted the 1.35v kit, which unfortunately, is only offered in white.
Pros: The TruePower New 550W provides reliable continuous power, and it's fairly quiet while doing so. The cables are a good length. The matte grey finish looks nice.
Cons: There's a reason Antec uses a fancy name for modular: this PSU is not modular. It has all of the standard cables hardwired like a non-modular PSU, but if you need extras, you can plug additional cables in. This means that even Molex and floppy connectors are hardwired.
The 24pin ATX cable is very stiff and round; it can be hard to fit in the back if your case has cable management.
The square grill on the back of the PSU is kinda ugly. A honeycomb pattern would've been nicer.
Kinda pricey for a Bronze semi-modular PSU: it's very close to modular Gold territory.
Pros: It works. You'd think that would be a given, seeing as how it's a cable, but I've had bad cables before.
It serves its purpose of extending fan cables.
Pros: Plenty of bass, and the two desktop speakers have enough power. The design blends in nicely with any setup. The control pod works well, and there's no static noise on the headphone jack.
Cons: Power cord is on the short side.
Power light on the control pod is amber - which is a color usually reserved for indicating standby mode or problems. Odd choice.
It would've been nice if the control pod was weighted, or had a rubber base. It slides around when you spin the dial.
Overall Review: The S-220 is a good choice for the price.
Pros: Coming from a 3.0GHz Core 2 Duo, the 3570K is a breath of fresh air. Which, I guess, is kind of expected when coming from a four-year-old dual-core. A 35-minute render in Sony Vegas 10 now takes 10 minutes, which makes a lot of difference.
Its HD 4000 integrated graphics are also surprisingly capable. I can run Team Fortress 2 on 720p, high settings at ~70fps. Obviously, you're not going to be playing Battlefield 3, but most games should run happily with the HD 4000 graphics.
Scores 7.6 on the Windows 7 WEI without any overclock.
Cons: Doesn't have hyper-threading, but I knew that going in. This will primarily be a gaming PC, so it's not a concern for me.
Overall Review: I haven't overclocked too much yet, but it runs cool. Then again, I haven't used a Sandy Bridge CPU, so I can't compare the temperature results.
Either way, I love my new 3570K!
Pros: The glossy piano-black front door on the Silencio 550 is gorgeous. It's clear that a lot of thought was put into the design of the case. Nothing looks gaudy or out of place. All buttons and jacks are easily accessible on the top of the case. The power and HDD LEDs are not blinding. It has a built-in SD card reader (awesome!)
The case is almost dead silent. I added a 900RPM intake fan to the front in addition to the two 800RPM fans in the case already. The noise dampening foam really does help.
Cons: Cable management is difficult, because of the limited space in the back panel, made even worse by the anti-noise foam padding. It's not as roomy as some other expensive cases. CM has added more holes and zip-tie spots since the case's release, which does help.
My front panel audio jacks don't work. CM cases apparently have a reputation for broken audio jacks. I just bought a good set of speakers with a clean, non-noisy headphone jack instead of having to RMA the entire case.
The SATA X-Dock uses a four-pin Molex power connector. Who still uses Molex these days?
Overall Review: I can't stop looking at this case. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a case that's simple and silent.
Pros: When running at ~900RPM, it's as quiet as my case's pre-installed 800RPM fans, and pushes more air than they do. I'm using it as a vertical intake fan, and it works well. Orange looks nice.
Cons: Loud at full speed. Scared me until I realized the BIOS had it set to full speed.
Overall Review: Comes with whatever you might need to get it installed. Box is written in Engrish.
Pros: The 2-piece ArctiClean set is easy to use and does exactly what it claims to do. Use a coffee filter for a lint-free cloth to get the thermal compound off. Very useful for PC upgrades!
Overall Review: Definitely worth $9 if you're upgrading your CPU.
Pros: Everything about this cooler is top-notch:
- Great packaging
- Great instructions
- Great performance
- (Fairly) easy installation
I've installed it to cool my C2D E7200 (LGA775) with the L.N.A. adapter. At full load and stock speed (2.53GHz), it tops out at 45C. At full load and 3.06GHz, it tops out at 50C. The cooling situation in my case is probably not the best (I need a can of pressurized air), but it's about 13C better than my $20 cooler did, and the Noctua manages to do that at a much slower speed.
Cons: - It's big? My Mushkin RAM just barely clears the fan on the side.
- Took a little while to figure out how to install the fan clips.
- Has a backplate; I needed to remove my motherboard to install it.
I would consider all of these "cons" nitpicking, though.
Overall Review: I was going to buy this when I buy my Ivy Bridge build in May/June, but my cheapo CPU cooler was dying, and since this supports also LGA775, I went ahead and ordered it. Very happy with my decision, I'd recommend this cooler to anyone.
Pros: Great 2.4GHz performance
Cheaper than its competitors
Cons: Firmware is SEVERELY lacking in features. Belkin chose to add only the bare minimum of features to their firmware. It can't do half the things that its competitor's stock firmware can do. The web interface is clunky, and requires a reboot whenever you change something. There are so few features that once you have configured it for the first time, there's no point in ever going back to the web interface, because there is nothing else to configure in it. The day that DD-WRT is ported to this router will be a magnificent one.
The included PC software is absolutely useless, and often reports incorrect data. Don't even bother installing it.
PCs take a minute or so to acquire a WiFi connection to it. It's very odd, because it assigns an IP quickly, but refuses packets for a little while longer. Devices wired to the internal gigabit switch work fine.
Overall Review: I'd like to recommend this router, just because of its performance, but its utter lack of features makes it hard for me to do that. If you want a router that you can plug in and forget about it, then fine, buy it. But if you are expecting any advanced features that a top-of-the-line router really ought to have, then move on to another, because you won't find those here.
Pros: - Enough connectors
- Pleasant matte-black honeycomb design, no bright LEDs
- Relatively quiet
- Running without issue for 3 years now
Cons: - Not 80 Plus certified
- Rosewill doesn't list the efficiency
Overall Review: Part of me didn't expect such a cheap PSU to last for years when I bought it, but three years later, it's still running with no problems.
Pros: - Fast 802.11n speeds
- 5 bars, compared to 3-4 with old 802.11g PCI card
Cons: - Haven't been able to hit 300Mbps
Overall Review: It gives a fast and stable connection, so I'm happy.
Pros: - Hasn't died.
- Has 931 glorious gigabytes of space available.
- Took all of 5 minutes to install, without any complications.
Cons: - May or may not be the hard drive, but I noticed a slowly oscillating vibration through my desk. Not really a problem.
Overall Review: Came packaged in bubble wrap and hardshell plastic casing. Held the hard drive very well!
Pros: Tiny, cheap, works great. The adapter has a BCM2046 chip inside, making it capable of Bluetooth 2.1, not just 2.0 as the specs state.
Overall Review: Got it as a Shell Shocker for $9 flat, free shipping included. Can't beat that.
Broadcom drivers required for Windows 7, but I'm not holding that against ASUS, since this product was released a year before 7.
Pros: - Gourgeous glass-covered 3.3-inch OLED screen. Easily beats out the iPod touch.
- Super-fast nVidia Tegra chip. Interface is snappy and responsive.
- Amazingly sexy design. You wouldn't believe it's an MS product.
- Intuitive menus.
- Thin; only about .3 inches thick.
- Compact; easily slips in your pocket.
- Wireless sync!
- Great battery life.
- Quickplay menu, shows new and recently viewed/listened content, also pins and now playing.
- HD Radio & FM, which might be useful in an area with HD radio and decent stations.
- Decent earphones included and pads.
- 720p HD output with dock! If you have an HDMI cable already, get the Sync dock. If you're using a standard-def TV, you'll have to get the more expensive AV Dock.
Cons: - No tilt support on music and video playback.
- Very few apps available now, but 3D games and Facebook/Twitter apps coming mid-Novermber.
- Limited video codec support; only WMV and straight MPEG4 (MPEG4 Simple, AAC) play natively. H.264, MPEG2, Xvid and DivX do not work without conversion.
Overall Review: I'm very happy with my Zune HD overall.
Also, not to steal business from Newegg, but if you want a Zune HD in blue, red, green, purple, or pink, order it from Zune Originals. They offer designs to engrave on it for $15 extra.
Pros: Nice colors, works great, recognized as standard USB HID mouse.
Overall Review: I got this wired mouse because it was cheap and my wireless mouse was always falling off my keyboard tray. The wireless mouse eventually died from its many falls 6 months ago. Good riddance.
Pros: Overclocked to 3.0GHz (316MHz FSB, 9.5 multiplier) on stock volts, with a $20 cooler and no thermal paste! Runs at 45c! Vista boots in less than a minute, and everything's lightning fast. Now all I need is an HD4850.
Cons: I bought this back when the E7400 and E7300 weren't out yet. Wish I could've gotten the E7400.
Overall Review: BUY IT! But if you have the cash, get the E7400 or even the E8400!
Pros: As I have said before, great motherboard. To answer the last reviewer's question, my board, which I ordered 7/29 and received 8/2, came with BIOS version F4. The current stable BIOS is F5, with the beta being F6a. The difference between F4 and F5 is the support of E0 steppings in the newer processors. The changes in F6a are unknown.
Cons: FireWire headers would be nice, since my case has FireWire ports on the front, but not a necessity because I don't have any FireWire devices. :P
Overall Review: Great mobo, has not crashed on me once. I am running Vista Ultimate SP1 and loving it! :)
Pros: Runs TrackMania Nations and Sunrise at 60fps on Ultra High, runs Kingdom Hearts on PCSX2 at 45fps, and runs pretty much everything else at good playable speeds.
Cons: Takes up 2 slots.
Overall Review: Gets 5.6 on the Aero test and 5.5 on the gaming test on the Windows Experience Index in Vista. That's out of 5.9, btw. :)
Pros: Plenty of RAM for my needs and XP's needs (Vista's too expensive for me). Automatically detected at 5-5-5-18 @ 1.8v for safety (some might consider that a con, tho). The FrostByte heatspreaders look cool. I took a pic of them just so I could use that color in Fireworks CS3. lol.
Overall Review: Remember, this RAM automatically sets itself at 5-5-5-18 with 1.8v for compatibility and safety reasons. To get the speed and performance you paid for, you must enter the BIOS! (Scary! :P) Look for your BIOS's tweaking section, then go into it. Mine was labeled "M.B. Intelligent Tweaker". Find this column of numbers that reads downwards: 5 5 5 18
If you can't edit them, look for a setting like "DRAM Timing Control" and set it to Manual. The timing settings should unlock now. Now, enter 4 5 4 11 going downwards. Now you'll need to up the voltage to what we need. Find the DRAM Voltage setting (mine was called "DRAM Voltage OVERCLOCK"). Set it to 2.1V or +0.4V. Now, save and exit the BIOS (F10 usually works, but read the bottom of the screen, it should tell you). Now you will get what you paid for. :P