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Damian F.

Damian F.

Joined on 07/04/07

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Most Favorable Review

Fantastic Value 1440p Card

SAPPHIRE PULSE Radeon RX 6700 10GB GDDR6 PCI Express 4.0 ATX Video Card 11321-02-20G
SAPPHIRE PULSE Radeon RX 6700 10GB GDDR6 PCI Express 4.0 ATX Video Card 11321-02-20G

Pros: Great performance for the money, when I bought the card (late July 2022) it was in the same price range as the RX 6600 XT which I had been looking at previously. Build quality is great and is in line with previous Sapphire cards I have had. The cooler has no problem keeping the GPU cool (Though I don't want to take apart the cooler, I would like to know if the vrm and memory is covered by the heatsink. If it was a Nitro cooler I would be confident they are, but having the Pulse cooler I don't know.) The fans are quiet out of the box, they stay under 40% fan speed until the GPU temp is over 76 c.

Cons: As is tradition with Radeon cards, the drivers are hit and miss. After I installed the card, Windows automatically grabbed drivers for it but they were on the old side from March. That being said the older drivers were stable and were only 1 to 2 percent slower in synthetic benchmarks compared to the current drivers in Late July. However I tried the Pro Edition drivers from AMD and they were noticeably slower in synthetic benchmarks than even the old drivers Windows grabbed. The Pro Edition drivers also either blocks or messes up the sensor readings so MSI afterburner couldn't do anything with the card. Of course this isn't Sapphires fault but is still something to consider with any Radeon Card. Personally I think the fan curve is too aggressive with keeping noise down. The card running at stock settings in a well ventilated case and running a consistent synthetic benchmark (Furmark) the temps slowly rose to 75 c and stayed there. That is a perfectly safe temp to run at forever but it bothers me that the card could be cooler. Minor complains is no RGB for those who prefer it, but I would've liked a led on the bard or the Sapphire or Radeon logos having a light to show power is getting to the board. Again very minor.

Overall Review: This is a great replacement for my old RX 580, in general its almost double the performance in real world gaming. I'm currently paring it with a Intel i3-12100F, any modern quad core and up like Ryzen 3000 or 5000 and Intel 10th 11th 12th gen will be just fine with this card. If I had the time and energy I would like to try this card on my older Ryzen 2700 but its running my server atm. My 6700 has great overclocking and undervolting headroom. In synthetic benchmarks like Time Spy, shows a 5.6 percent increase from stock. Combine that with a much more aggressive fan curve and my card stays in the 60 to 65 c range. A few other people have mentioned coil whine but I never noticed it, but I'm not sure if my ears can even hear that anymore. Just something to keep in mind

Most Critical Review

Good for Some Situations, Bad for Me

Changhong 42" Class Ultra HD LED TV - UD42YC5500UA
Changhong 42" Class Ultra HD LED TV - UD42YC5500UA

Pros: This TV has a good look all around. If it wasn't for the Changhong logo on the front, It could easily be mistaken for a high end brand. The picture looks decent from bluray content to old vhs playback. The looks are not just for show either. Although I didn't throw it out the window, It almost feels like it would have survived it.

Cons: The huge issue I had with the set is the input lag which exists on all inputs on any resolution or refresh rate. The result of this is that you hear people taking before they start talking on the screen. Honestly if all you watch is blurays and have a cable box connected to the HDMI inputs, you'll be fine. There is a sound delay option in the menu that compensates for the input lag and with some fiddling I got it to be acceptable. HOWEVER the sound delay option on the TV doesn't work on all the inputs, from my experience it only works on HDMI inputs. So watching laserdiscs on the component input becomes unbearable with the mismatched audio. The sound delay option on the TV didnt help me anyhow since I use my stereo the majority of the time. This alone made the tv useless to me. Also yeah they definitely mislead people with the refresh rates. At 4K resolutions the set runs at 30 hz and has a 240 hz emulation mode which in my opinion is barely effective since it stutters half the time.

Overall Review: Like I said in the Cons section, If you only use the HDMI inputs and set the audio delay, It'll be a decent TV set and worth the price as a budget 4K TV. Unfortunately it is entirely unsuitable in my setup. I ended up with a 42" LG 1080p TV that Ive been much happier with and haven't had any trouble with at all. Also I have no idea how some people are gaming on this set, the controller input lag alone would drive me to madness.

Bought it to test a Msata drive

SYBA SI-ADA40066 50mm (1.8") mSATA SSD to 2.5" SATA Converter Adapter
SYBA SI-ADA40066 50mm (1.8") mSATA SSD to 2.5" SATA Converter Adapter

Pros: I needed to test a Msata drive to make sure it still worked and hopefully copy data off of it if it was in good condition. This adapter worked flawlessly in my use.

Cons: Not sure if I would feel comfortable using this long term because of the mount points, but wasn't a concern for what I needed it for.

Overall Review: My Thinkpad T420 died due to a foam cup that leaked on my desk overnight and slowly fried its motherboard. While I was waiting for a "for parts" Thinkpad to arrive I needed to make sure the boot drive had survived. Thanks to this adapter I was able to see my Samsung 840 Evo was fully functioning and undamaged. While I cant say that I have any further use for this adapter, in a time of need this adapter gave me the assurance that my drive was good to go and just dropped it into the replacement Thinkpad, booted it up as if nothing had happened.

Meet Every Expectation

WD Green WD40EZRX 4TB IntelliPower 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - Bulk Bare Drive
WD Green WD40EZRX 4TB IntelliPower 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - Bulk Bare Drive

Pros: I bought two of these last year (May 2015) to use as a Raid 1 Array. I have a had little trouble that can be attributed to the drives themselves. My speeds accessing the array over a gigabit network average 115 MB/s reading and 60 MB/s writing.

Cons: None that come to mind.

Overall Review: My two drives are used in a Raid 1 Array that doesnt experience heavy usage, so I cant attest long term usage with normal (read gaming) use.

Decent little Nettop that came with a small suprise

Zotac ZBOX-ID81-U Intel HM65 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System
Zotac ZBOX-ID81-U Intel HM65 Black Mini / Booksize Barebone System

Pros: -From cold boot to desktop in Win 7 in just 21 secs. -Runs most programs just fine. I even installed Half Life 2 and it was certainly playable albeit with a few lowered settings. This was the most demanding game I ran on it just for kicks. -It plays Netflix well and can run 1080 films in VLC just fine as well and ran around 50% CPU usage. The only thing that didn't want to play was a sample 4K video, but thats ok most of the video that will be played on this will be standard and some HD. Everything I used is the same programs and files I play on other computers and devices. I'm sure it would run better with optimized videos and efficient programs. -Its quite. The only time I heard the fan kick in was when I was playing Half Life 2. All of the video played with the fan at normal quite speeds. -I only have 2GB of ram installed, but have had no problems with anything I'm doing on it. Besides I still have a open slot for down the road. -I did receive a little CPU upgrade though. Instead of a celeron 857 running at 1.2 GHz, I have a celeron 867 running at 1.3 GHz. The box says I should have what I ordered but the BIOS and windows say different. Its a nice little surprise but its not like getting an i3 instead.

Cons: -It runs fairly warm on one particular spot. Its never had any problems stability wise though. -Internet explorer runs just dreadful. I used it just long enough to install Firefox. Firefox runs fine for the most part, but sometimes when I'm typing theres a delay in showing what I type. Its not a chronic issue but it has defiantly messed me up a few times. I don't know how chrome or opera 12 or 18 runs, it only has Firefox for the family. I'm not going to rock the boat when it comes to teaching them a new browser again.

Overall Review: -Paired with Kingston 60GB SSD and just one 2GB Mushkin DDR3-1333 stick. -This was the first time I had the chance to use a newer USB 3.0 flash drive to install Windows, but it refused to install from a 3.0 port citing random errors and being extremely slow. I later had the revelation to try a 2.0 port and it installed just fine. -Due to other comments, the first thing I did was check my audio ports and all other connections, but didn't find any that were nonfunctional in my case. -I did try the wireless connection to make sure it worked, and it does, but my ap is an older and congested 54 g router. I didn't really put it trough any paces speed or latency wise.

Great Controller, Bad cable connection

Xbox 360 Wired Controller Black/Glossy Black
Xbox 360 Wired Controller Black/Glossy Black

Pros: Superb instant compatibility with windows and games. I never had to install drivers in Win 7 Pro or manually set button layout or such in games. Decent feel, its completely plastic but it still feels decent.

Cons: The connection between the cable and controller is poor. I didn't have troubles for the first month or two, but after a while if I moved the wrong way the usb connection would be lost for a sec. Usually this caused the game to pause , no big deal if its just a single player game but a problem when its multiplayer obviously. At one point it became chronic and I took apart the controller (which voids the warranty I imagine) and pushed on the connections a bit. This helped for a while but its beginning to act up again. If i care enough I may try re soldering the connection in the future.

Overall Review: -Cable is far too long for using at a desk. -I wish I could increase the default vibrations for the controller. I can set the intensity in some games but it is still not as intense as I would like. -The cable connection is really the only major problem I have with this controller. I'm planning on getting a wireless one next.