Date Joined: 11/29/13
Pros: Inexpensive, included mic for auto-configuration, all features work, good as new.
Cons: Menu navigation is bit clumsy.
Overall Review: I received a refurbished receiver in a pristine condition. Everything works well. I've left it on for over 3 months without any issues.
Update (2017 November): Still works flawlessly after 3.5 years. I was looking into getting a 4K TV, and I just discovered that it does 4K passthrough.
Pros: Cheap, works on linux, good for NAS.
Cons: A bit slow.
Overall Review: Linux 3.14 picked up the card and the 2 3TB HDDs connected to it. I use it as JBOD, not Raid. Also worked with SSD.
Measured Speed - 110 MB/s in total (55 MB/s on each SATA port) with PCI Latency Timer at 128. If only one HDD is used, I get 90 MB/s. (The HDDs are 7200 RPM Toshibas which give me higher read/write on mobo SATA 3.0 ports; so they're not the bottleneck).
Advertised speed - PCI maxes out at 266 MB/s (32-bit at 66 MHz) and each SATA 150 port at 192 MB/s. Even with 8/10 encoding overhead or whatever they use, I expected at least 100 MB/s on each SATA port. -1 egg for that. Also, I've only had it for 1 day - dunno about longevity.
Good, inexpensive SATA PCI card. Sufficient for NAS if you don't care about speed.
Pros: Supports ECC memory.
Cons: Stock fan is a bit loud.
Pros: Good, inexpensive motherboard. Plenty of PCI/PCI-E slots.
Cons: BIOS update is a pain.
Overall Review: This will boot up Haswell Refresh processors, but it won't reboot. There is a BIOS update from MSI for Haswell refresh processors. I spent several hours at it - tried M-Flash which just hangs and then tried DOS boot disk. which updated BIOS to the new version. It still didn't work.
What worked was restoring BIOS to factory settings, and then using M-Flash from USB drive to update both BIOS and ME.
Removing an egg for lack of proper instructions on BIOS update.
Pros: Elegant design, good reception, long cable, included command strips for sticking on walls.
Cons: Direction sensitive
Overall Review: I'm in downtown Toronto, with CN Tower awfully close to the North and Lake Ontario and Buffalo to the south. Rabbit ears got me only channels from CN tower, about 5-6 of them.
With this Winegard, I get 23 channels in one direction and 25 in the other, most with good reception. It picks up quite a few channels from Hamilton and Buffalo. The entire list -
NBC - 2.1 - WGRZ-HD - Good - US
Weathernation - 2.2 - WGRZ-WN - Good - US
Antenna TV - 2.3 - WGRZ-AT - Good - US
CBS - 4.1 - WIVB-HD - Good - US
CBC - 5.1 - CBLT-DT - Good - Canada
ABC - 7.1 - WKBW-HD - Good - US
CTV - 9.1 - CFTO-DT - Good - Canada
CHCH - 11.1 - CHCH-DT - Good - US
PBS - 17.1 - WNED-HD - Bad - US
Think - 17.2 - Think - Bad - US
TVO - 19.1 - TVO - Good - Canada
The CW - 23.1 - WNLO-HD - Good - US
Bounce - 23.2 - Bounce - Good - US
CBC-French - 25.1 - CBLFTDT - Good - Canada
FOX - 29.1 - WUTV-HD - Bad - US
TCN - 29.2 - TCN - Bad - US
CTV Two - 35.1 - CHCJ-HD - Good - Canada
Crossroads - 36.1 - CITS-DT - Good - Canada
OMNI - 40.1 - CJMT-DT - Good - Canada
Global - 41.1 - CIII-HD - Good - Canada
Global SD - 41.2 - CIII-SD - Good - Canada
OMNI.1 - 47.1 - CFMT - Good - Canada
CITYTV - 57.1 - CITYTV - Good - Canada
My antenna points south but with a 15 degrees change, it picks up 2 more channels:
My TV - 49.1 - WNYO-HD - Good - US
GetTV - 49.2 - WNYO - Good - US
but loses quality on NBC, ABC and CBS.
If I get even the tiniest sustained stuttering, it's listed as "Bad". "Good" means no video or audio stuttering at all.
In contrast to comments on blogs/forums about amplified antennas doing poorer than unamplified ones in the city (putatively due to high strength CN Tower signals saturating the amplifier) , I got only 8 without power and over 20 with power.
Play around with direction - it matters a lot. I used tape to stick it on 2 windows and 2 walls in slightly differing directions and got 23, 25, 9 and 16 channels respectively. Windows are better than walls, and much better than beams.
This is much better, aesthetically and functionally, than rabbit ears. Recommended.