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Laura P.

Laura P.

Joined on 03/14/09

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 19
Most Favorable Review

Best value modular unit on the market

Rosewill HIVE Series, HIVE-550S, 550W Fully Modular Power Supply, 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified, Single +12V Rail, SLI & CrossFire Ready, Black
Rosewill HIVE Series, HIVE-550S, 550W Fully Modular Power Supply, 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified, Single +12V Rail, SLI & CrossFire Ready, Black

Pros: Hi, it's the PSU Guru of OCN again. Rosewill's been making a big comeback in the PSU market for a while now. They had a rough start, but for the last three years they've had almost entirely quality power supplies in their line-up. This new unit here happens to be internally identical to the OCZ ZS-550, manufactured by Sirtec. Same power supply, but modular and with a different housing. And available for significantly lower cost. At time of writing it's the best value modular PSU series on the market. There are better units out there, but not for this cheap.

Cons: Not many to speak of. You could spend 20-40% more for a higher-end Antec, Corsair, Silverstone, etc, which might be worth it for serious enthusiasts. But this is almost as good as the enthusiast level parts and for a mainstream price. So yeah, not really any cons.

Overall Review: Rosewill don't deserve their bad reputation. I mean, they did a few years ago, when they were selling junk from Youngyear, Deer, and Wintech that couldn't do its rated wattage. But their current line-up, from ATNG, Sirtec, SuperFlower, and Solytech, is very satisfactory and they don't deserve the mistrust they still get. Also, leaving a one egg review for a DOA is pretty petty. At least RMA it and see how the replacement does.

Most Critical Review

Liars

Diablotek PHD Series - 2nd Generation PHD650 650 W ATX12V v2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Power Supply
Diablotek PHD Series - 2nd Generation PHD650 650 W ATX12V v2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Power Supply

Pros: I'm the Power Supply Editor for a prominent computer enthusiast forum (Newegg filters posts with links), so I know a thing or two about power supplies. I just got this one for a review. Hoooo boy. Pros? It isn't the WORST power supply I've ever seen.

Cons: Cons: It isn't QUITE the worst power supply I've ever seen. Just a quick glance at the internals is enough to tell me that this power supply will never do anything north of 400W, probably not more than 300-350W. Surprisingly it isn't using the antiquated half-bridge topology (which was the standard from ~1995-2003), but is instead using a more modern double forward topology. However, it's one of the shoddiest implementations of this topology I've ever seen. Build quality is bad. Not the worst I've seen, but pretty terrible for a $50 PSU. Soldering is messy and full of potential cold joints, there are several wires that were stripped too far and are a short circuit hazard, and it's lacking a MOV for surge protection. It uses LCZ and BH brand capacitors, which are both confirmed to have high failure rates and false specs. Short circuit protection is implemented via a fuse, so if you have a short circuit the fuse will blow and the PSU will be dead. Nice design philosophy.

Overall Review: Cons continued: on the subject of protections, its secondary controller only supports OVP and UVP. No OCP, OPP, or OTP are present. So when you load this thing up to 350W and the +12V rectifier pops, expect the voltage spike and burst of electrical noise to fry your computer. It's also ugly, the fan is a howler (despite being 140mm), and the sleeving on the cables is poorly done. This power supply just sucks in every way imaginable. Avoid it. You can get quality 400W power supplies for cheaper than this piece of garbage 300W, so there's no reason at all to get this.

Garbage

RAZER Lycosa Keyboard
RAZER Lycosa Keyboard

Pros: It is a functional input device.

Cons: Skip the Lycosa. It's a piece of garbage. $70? I picked one up at a thrift store for $7.54 and I still feel like I was ripped off. It has all the build quality of a house built out of crackers and cheeze whiz, the keys feel like garbage, the shiny plastic smears and looks like garbage, the rubber coating on the keys wears off and where it doesn't it attracts hair and dust so either way it looks like garbage...

Overall Review: $80 can buy you an entry level mechanical keyboard. Go for that instead, or go for a keyboard that has more features than the Lycosa at a lower price point, like the I-Rocks KR-6820E. This thing just... sucks.

Great mid-range enthusiast PSU

Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-750 750W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Certified 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Intel Haswell Fully Compatible
Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-750 750W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Certified 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Intel Haswell Fully Compatible

Pros: I'm the PSU Editor for a prominent enthusiast computer forum, and after selling off my high-end 1200W PSU engineering sample (since I needed $300 more than I needed a 1200W PSU) I chose this one as its replacement. It's an extremely well-built Delta unit with a sparse, clean design and very good performance for its price range. A word on performance vs. build quality: SeaSonic-built PSUs like the Antec TP-750 or Corsair X750 or XFX Pro 750W may have better performance, but they are *not* more reliable. SeaSonic's build quality is average and their QC is not strict. Delta Electronics, who make the HCG-750, have a much better reliability record. Your chance of a DOA or a squealing coil are far less with a Delta unit like this, than with a SeaSonic. But SeaSonic gives better performance. Your pick.

Cons: I'd prefer modularity--but there are only two cables I'm not using (1 molex chain, 1 SATA chain), so it wasn't a big detriment. Also the red doesn't go well with my blue and black case.

Overall Review: Currently powering: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 @3.7Ghz Asus P5Q Pro 4GB DDR2 1066 2x Sapphire Radeon HD4870 1GB 2 mechanical HDDs, one SSD Will be swapping the 4870s out for 6950s, should handle it fine.

Has some issues

ASUS VH232H Glossy Black 23" 5ms Widescreen Full HD 1080p LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 ASCR 20000:1 w/Speakers & HDMI
ASUS VH232H Glossy Black 23" 5ms Widescreen Full HD 1080p LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 ASCR 20000:1 w/Speakers & HDMI

Pros: Monitor is a very good performer, one of the better bang for the buck 1920x1080s out there. It's built fairly solid, has a clear picture, and good color.

Cons: Has significant backlight bleed around the edges. Normally that's not a problem, but it's enough to bother even me. Additionally mine has two dead pixels and six stuck ones, only two of which I could unstick. Not acceptable.

Overall Review: Mine was a refurbished model, so maybe that's the problem. But I'm not 100% satisfied with this purchase.

Good laptop--bad thermal paste

ASUS Laptop G73 Gaming Series Intel Core i7 1st Gen 720QM (1.60GHz) 6GB Memory 500GB HDD ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870 17.3" Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit G73JH-RBBX05
ASUS Laptop G73 Gaming Series Intel Core i7 1st Gen 720QM (1.60GHz) 6GB Memory 500GB HDD ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870 17.3" Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit G73JH-RBBX05

Pros: One of the better gaming laptops for the money, desktop equivalent would be like an i5 and HD5770. Built fairly well, large screen, etc.

Cons: Cheap, terrible thermal paste used on the GPU. After 8 months the laptop started shutting down when running LOTRO. GPU-Z showed the GPU running at 95-107*C, which is way out of the acceptable range. After cleaning out a small amount of dust and remounting the GPU heatsink with Arctic Silver 5 the GPU load temperatures dropped to 70-80*C. Asus saved $0.30 by using cheap silicone paste instead of a decent one like AS 5 or Shine Etsu. Way to go. Also, this thing is a pain in the NECK to take apart. Not designed with easy maintenance in mind.

Overall Review: Aside from the overheating issues, there is a lot to like about this laptop. Asus is a good company overall, but sometimes they don't pay enough attention to the details, and this can cause headaches for the end user. Before buying a G73 series laptop, factor in the cost/effort of having to reapply the GPU thermal paste in 6-12 months.