Date Joined: 12/24/03
Pros: As others have mentioned, the drive is very quiet. Certainly enough to be used in a DVR or PC used for such. The drive is certainly quieter than other components in a computer or even the fan in my NAS enclosure.
The drive is fast for a large storage device. I took a pragmatic approach and copied about 120GB from a drive array to the new drive. The average transfer rate using FastCopy in continuous transfer mode was 118.04 MB/s on the freshly installed drive. In testing my last purchase (equivalent WD Red NAS Drive), the same files transferred at 111MB/s. While not a huge difference, it is faster. In either case, used as intended in NAS, the speed is better than the potential transfer rate of about 100MB/s on a gigabit network connection.
The specs are good, but based on this being a mechanical drive, are likely overkill, even in an array. I like equipment that is overbuilt. It tends to hold up better under regular use.
Cons: This is the first generation of this drive model. While not a true con, there is no historical data for this build.
Other than this, I see nothing wrong with the drive or specifications.
Overall Review: While this is intended for NAS, I would suggest it is also a good candidate for a drive array (RAID 10, 5), either internal or external (say USB 3.0 or eSATA3)
Pros: The initial setup was simple and the instructions easy to follow. In addition, more complex setup was completed without difficulty, and the documentation on the CD was surprisingly clear and complete.
The router is about the same size as other devices, but I really like the vertical format. Since the unit resides on a shelf, it takes up very little space - a significant design improvement.
The router has a large number of features and can accommodate a number of applications including gaming setup, NAT and VPN. My testing thus far indicates these features work without difficulty.
The device itself appears sturdy and well designed.
Cons: The LEDs are a bit bright for my taste. (nit)
Although technically possible, the bandwidth channels on the 2.4 and 5GHz frequencies do not automatically adjust and have to be set to one of these (20 and 40 MHz on 2.4 and 20, 40 and 80 MHz on 5GHz)
There is no easy way to mount the mechanism on the wall if that is your preference.
Overall Review: I live in a 3 br two story house. The router is in the center of the house on the second floor as that is the location that works best.
While I will not do direct comparisons, I will say that the router does produce a stronger signal than my previous device and does not drop out anywhere on the property. The lot is small, however, and I have not tested the signal off the property.
There are three adults living in the house using Desktop PCs, one wireless printer, tablets and e-readers. All the devices connect and maintain a signal without any issue.
I have separate SSIDs for each band and have turned off the guest access. The lower band works fine on most of my devices with the wireless g. I have tested the upper band only on wireless n as I have not yet installed the compatible wireless ac card in my laptop.
Pros: Small form factor
Large capacity - Adequate to keep an image of my system drive plus additional data files with room to spare.
Only requirement is a USB 2.0 port
Cons: None so far
Overall Review: This is the first Toshiba drive I have tried. Transfer speed is what I expect from USB 2.0, 30-35MB/s sustained write. It is comparable to the other USB 2.0 hard drives I have from WD.
I don't use the software that comes with the drive, so I cannot make any comments one way or the other about that.
I recommend care in handling - it is a hard drive after all.
Overall Review: This is actually an 87W part. The i5-660 is the equivalent 73W part. The difference between the two is he built-in GPU clock which is 733MHz for the 660 and 900MHz for the 661.
Pros: Most of the time, apps are ready once the desktop comes up instead of having to wait til everything loads like older OSs
As others have mentioned, mostly the same as Vista.
I generally like the OS.
Cons: I have stability issues with external drives. Twice in the past two days, the file manager has simply dropped part of the file index so that files appear to be missing. I was able to recover the files by running the disk scanner, but have never in 5 years of using these and similar drives on an XP box so much as lost a single file in similar fashion. Curious, but I expected some glitches.
When external drives are removed using safely remove, and then powered down, the system hangs when shutting down. It seems to work fine if I shut the system down then power off the drives.
In addition, the system has temporarily frozen when loading some files. I look at task manager and there appear to be plenty of resources, so not sure what is causing this delay of up to a minute or two. File manager (explorer) window says not responding but eventually clears.
Possibly more to come. This is only after a week of using the system
Overall Review: Fairly basic business system:
E7600 Core-2 processor
ATI 4670 GPU
4 GB RAM (DDR2-1066)
640 GB OS drive (using about 25GB now)
Monitor is ASUS 25.5" 1920 x 1200 DVI.
Printer is HP 1200
Windows 7 (actually v6.1) 64 bit with my resident applications (antivirus, etc) being optimized for Win 7.
System rating is 5.9 (hard drive is the limiting factor) otherwise 6.4
Drivers are all Windows 7 64 bit drivers.
External Drives are WD MyBook Pro 1394b (yes, the drivers are for Win 7 64 bit on the controller) and one older 1394a drive in a different controller hub plus a couple portable 2.5" USB drives.
I don't care much for the file manager. I used to be able to set up folders with large icons however I wanted. 7 forces some kind of sort (name is of course the default) and I like to have a bit more control on some folders than this gives me.
Pros: Very good clarity. The image and text clarity on this monitor is superior to the other monitors I have seen and used in the 24" + class, and as far as that goes, most smaller monitors as well.
There is no discernible lag when rendering images or video. No ghosting on video as far as I have seen to date.
Good quality for the price.
I can work on large spreadsheets or two full portrait documents side by side with no difficulty. Since I work with documents and spreadsheets all day long, this is a real benefit.
Cons: Screen goes to blue rather than black when connected using HDMI connector. Not sure about other modes, but this forces me to turn the monitor off since it doesn't really go into a standby mode when it doesn't have a signal - OK, so maybe not really a con since it saves power.
No mechanism to adjust monitor height.
Overall Review: I recommend this highly. I have now purchased a second one for my home office to replace my aging 20".
Pros: Good speed with both 1394b and eSATA.
Formats to NTFS with little difficulty using either of the above.
With a good RAID controller, could use two of these together as RAID 01 (stripe with mirror) and would work a bit faster.
Cons: Setup and Diagnostics software only work properly with the USB connection - not sure what it might look like on a MAC. Windows software definitely needs an update. This was a problem on earlier versions of the WD external array drives and has never been corrected.
If you don't start the drive before starting Windows, the drive will sometimeds cause Windows to lock up while it is starting up. Frees up after a couple minutes.
Overall Review: I bought two. While it comes formatted for MAC, Windows can use the drive out of the box, but I wanted a mirror, so had to hook up to USB and make the change to RAID Mirror then back to eSATA. I was able to format with no trouble using firewire - 2nd unit to first then eSATA to comp. (Setup still had to be USB to each unit individually) Formatted NTFS 4096 bytes/sector.
Pros: Easy install - no hassle with BIOS
Overall Review: Installed on P5N-E WS Pro Motherboard. I was surprised to get the RAM to overclock and remain stable. Lots of reports of not being able to run native 1066 RAM at above 1006 on this Mobo and this overclocks at 1028 without a hiccup. Been running straight for weeks without a shutdown. Server 2003 current on service packs.
Pros: No setup required
Overall Review: Installed in a Dell gx620. Since the company ships with parts that are on the edge of falling out of spec, the original RAM would bluescreen occasionally (~once every two weeks) Since this was installed, the BSODs have vanished away . . . Too bad the system doesn't allow for overclocking.
Pros: Drives run a bit cooler than the 7500AAKS
Drives are relatively quiet (see cons).
Good price per GB storage, though I paid more than the current price.
Seem faster than either the 500 or 750GB drives I have.
Cons: When I added a pair of these to a system the drive harmonics are a little off from the existing drives and cause overall slight vibration in the system.
Overall Review: I added these to an existing system to increase storage space. They are on an SATA backplane in RAID mirror. The system had 4 80GB drives in two mirrors, one OS and Apps, and the other storage. So far I have not seen any problems despite the small noise and vibration issue. Ran a verify on the array and the drives are perfect. Best drives I have purchased in a while.
Pros: Looks like it would work if . . . the cables could just . . . reach the connector. I laughed when I saw how short the cables are.
Cons: Cables don't extend the width of a standard ATX board.
Overall Review: Come on, add another 4 inches of cable so this device works with anything. I'll pay an extra buck for it.
Pros: Device works VERY well.
Well built with and includes everything required to connect drives to a separate controller device.
Drives remain well within temperature tolerances.
Easy drive access and hot-swap.
I like the individual power buttons. I can power my RAID storage off if I just want to boot the OS.
Cons: No Documentation to speak of. I had to figure out most of what needed to be done either from reviews here or off the cuff.
Use of screws that are too long to attach the cage to the case can cause damage to the right outer drive. The left will not insert and the tray catches - whatever you do, don't try to force the outside drive into place.
Overall Review: I have 4 drives in RAID and one slot I use for bare SATA drives to move data. Use the screws that come with the device. If your drive bays have brackets, they will have to be flattened/removed to fit this device into three bays. For 5 drives, there is no tolerance for grooves to accommodate the brackets. I'll be purchasing more of these.
Pros: Case is well built and has plenty of room for expansion. PSU is adequate for most users - will require upgrade for hardcore gamers
Cons: Depending on Mobo, cables from the front may not be long enough which can create a problem with adding a fifth drive in the lower bays.
Overall Review: I have purchased two of these cases. (from Newegg) One arrived in perfect condition. Second had no signs of damage to the packaging, but had obviously been dropped prior to packing. Rear corner was bent and one of the 'pins' on the front cover was broken. I was in a hurry so patched it and used it anyway.
I would like to see one (or both) of the external 3.5s go away and a sixth bay below. With the next generation, no longer need the floppy. 2003 will install from a USB floppy and Vista will install from a flash drive if additional drivers are needed
Pros: Power is smooth and clean
Draw is much lower than the prior 500W unit.
Plenty of connectors incl for two high end video cards.
Voltages are adequate and stable +
Cons: The SATA power connectors were not well made. The pins bent plugging in to standard WD drives. I had to remove the bad connectors and replace them with new ones. This was on three of the four connectors I used. Fortunately essy to do, but voids the warranty.
Didn't even bother with rebate.
Price is NOT cheap.
Overall Review: I've been building computers for nearly 20 years. Things like this usually run in batches and I'm glad it was only the connectors and not something worse. Too much hassle and time to RMA and I wasn't willing to wait. If you're careful, you'll be OK.
+ I know my local power grid isn't entirely stable and power varies - usually on the high side, but occasional browns as well. I use a UPS with power conditioning so my voltage is stable. PSUs and motors hate unstable power.
Pros: • Excellent power control.
• E6750 installed, runs cool (21C idle, less than 35C under load, OC) stock fan.
• Handles memory well.
• Performance does not appear to be an issue.
• The AI tools work well both for OC and for power saving. A rare mix.
Cons: - Only one SATA controller - no E-SATA on board.
- Onboard RAID does not work if a second add on board is intalled - no system bios setting to force the RAID bios to load. (Regular SATA/IDE mode works - just not RAID)
Overall Review: I had to consider cost to benefit ratio. I really wanted to go with one of the P5E3 boards, but cost of RAM alone made me hesitate, though there are more options like E-SATA and wireless on one or two of them.
The X38 supports 2 PCI-e version 2.0 x16 slots. This is twice the throughput of the older PCI-e x16 slots.
I would rate this at about 4.5. I don't give excellent ratings easily.
Pros: Raid 0/1 is a good feature offers either capacity or redundancy. Used on Firewire, speed is what I expect. Drive has a minimal footprint for two-drive enclosure.
Cons: Drive fans are noisy. The stateful switch is problematic. I have to make sure to manually turn it off (hold the button in) to get it to stay off. It would come on in the middle of the night even though the computer was off. It does not work well when connected with USB. I had a lot of data errors and the WD diagnostic program would not find this drive, nor did it appear in the "safely remove hardware" list. I also had to set it up with USB because the setup program wouldn't find it when connected on firewire. After setting it up and getting the aforementioned errors, I tried it on firewire and it works just fine - go figure). That said, it does not work in a daisy chain of Firewire devices. Like SCSI, I am used to daisy chaining multiple compatible 1394 devices. I have another WD device, and shutting down one shut down both when daisy chained. Sounds like a problem in the firmware to me. . .
Overall Review: Drives are still solid, though there was some concern about failure of these larger drives initially.
Pros: Lots of capacity
Flexibility in both RAID and connectivity.
Cons: One of the two drives I have loses its firewire (1394a) connection when the hard disks go to sleep.
Maxtor doesn't exist anymore except as a subset of S--gate
Overall Review: After doing a lot of research, I found that all of the manufacturers are having a higher failure rate in drives in the 400GB+ size range. I purchased 2 of these units about a month apart. I am running both in RAID mirror. They are SATA drives, so I expect to be able to replace a drive if one fails. I am running a UPS with AVR since these drives seem to be VERY sensitive to power surges, and AVR keeps the voltage extremely consistent. I have not lost a drive since I started using this UPS, but have had several of all major brands fail over the years.
Pros: I have many of these 80GB drives in both IDE and SATA and they have been reliable. Age range is from 4 years old to the one I am waiting to receive. None of the ones I have in use have failed. For general use, or corporate use, there probably is no better drive available.
Cons: Some of the drives are noisy. Maybe 10% or so.
Overall Review: I have had *all* brands of drives fail in about the same percentages. Maybe 2%-5% regardless of make, model or brand fail entirely or have difficulties. I have fewer failures on the drives at or under 250GB at this time. It seems a larger percentage of the 500/750s fail quickly or are DOA which is especially notable since I only have a few of the larger drives.
Pros: It has 16GB space (15.37 in computer terms)
Cons: It failed in one day.
Overall Review: I can't return it because there is confidential data on it. Since it initially worked, I used it. Now it will not start when I plug it in to anything. Bye bye $$$. A hammer will take care of it.
Pros: Print quality and first print out speed are good. Small footprint is nice. Cost for return is very good. We have had no problems to date.
Cons: Construction doesn't appear as solid as I might like. It remains to be seen whether this printer will last through a similar life cycle as existing installed printers.
Overall Review: After much review, I have started replacing older desktop printers with this printer. It is smaller than most models being replaced and is considerably speedier. The original printers were at at $5-800 price bracket when purchased, making these almost disposable. I would also say this could be used for a small workgroup with a print server. For built in ethernet, look at the same brand ML-2571N
Pros: Plenty of Cooling
Adequate Power Supply
Plenty of Drive Bays.
Cons: The power supply is not current standard.
Cables to USB, 1394, Audio on top, not standard, not marked properly.
Case is generally flimsy, especially the plastic items.
The mechanism for installing drives has problems. In my case the bottom two drive trays were too narrow and the first "lock" I used did not fit and broke when I turned it. I had to trim a bit off the lock to get it to work.
Of the three cards I installed, only one could use the locking mechanism. I had to remove the mechanism to install my Graphics card.
I had to remove the front door of the case (one of its selling points) once I installed my Audigy Platinum because the knobs (which are only out less than 1/4 inch) would not allow the door to shut.
The silver coating on the plastic peeled off when I accidentally scraped it.
ETC. . .
Overall Review: I have built between 100 and 200 computers to date. This is the first time I have tried a ThermalTake case. The brands I usually use were not available.
While the case will probably do the job I need, I am not generally happy with the workmanship and the lack of forethought for add-ons. I do not believe I will ever purchase another product from ThermalTake. This is a mistake that I will probably recitify in the not too distant future. What a waste of a C note.