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Samuel M.

Samuel M.

Joined on 09/23/08

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 18
Most Favorable Review
Intel Pentium E5200 - Pentium Dual-Core Wolfdale Dual-Core 2.5 GHz LGA 775 65W Desktop Processor - BX80571E5200
Intel Pentium E5200 - Pentium Dual-Core Wolfdale Dual-Core 2.5 GHz LGA 775 65W Desktop Processor - BX80571E5200

Pros: Amazing power per dollar. Dual-Core. 45nm, so it's significantly cooler than the chips in the E2xxx series.

Cons: The included cooler is alright, but I almost broke one of the little plastic clips when installing it. Do yourself a favor and get a Zalman or Thermaltake with a bigger fan that is quieter. This chip also doesn't have hardware virtualization, but you can hardly expect that at this price point.

Overall Review: I'm using it in a x64 Vista Media Center setup. Before, I was using a Pentium 4 2.8GHz. 720p video would use about 95% of the CPU, and 1080i video would not play smoothly at all. Now, with the E5200, 720p video uses 14% of the CPU, and 1080i only about 19%. Now I can play HD video on the computer, on an extender, record 2 TV shows, and still have CPU cycles to spare. Make sure your motherboard supports the 45nm chips!

10/14/2008
Most Critical Review

Major Disappointment

TRENDnet TEG-S5 Unmanaged 5-Port Gigabit Switch
TRENDnet TEG-S5 Unmanaged 5-Port Gigabit Switch

Pros: Auto MDI/MDI-X on all ports, small, keeps cool, inexpensive

Cons: It doesn't work. Streaming the Super Bowl last night to a Windows Media Center Extender, I got multiple Network Slowdown messages. I swapped this switch out for a 10/100 switch at halftime (missing Springsteen), and all was good for the rest of the game.

Overall Review: I blame you, TRENDnet, for me missing Springsteen! Will be returning the product.

Celeron isn't horrible anymore!

Intel Celeron E3300 - Celeron Dual-Core Wolfdale Dual-Core 2.5 GHz LGA 775 65W Processor - BX80571E3300
Intel Celeron E3300 - Celeron Dual-Core Wolfdale Dual-Core 2.5 GHz LGA 775 65W Processor - BX80571E3300

Pros: This is an excellent processor! Decent clock speed, dual core, virtualization extensions, low TDP, quiet included heatsink...couldn't ask for more in a budget processor.

Cons: None!

Overall Review: Can't find a single thing wrong with this processor. If you need more L2 cache, you probably need a quad-core anyway.

Decent budget case

Linkworld 43715-128FU+P04 Black Steel Micro ATX Mini Tower Computer Case 430W Power Supply
Linkworld 43715-128FU+P04 Black Steel Micro ATX Mini Tower Computer Case 430W Power Supply

Pros: Case looks much better than you'd expect for the price. Comes with full complement of screws. Front panel connectors work fine. Two-pin power header!!!

Cons: Metal is a little flimsy, and not always rolled over. Cut myself once while assembling machine. The front panel is very glossy and is a fingerprint magnet. The blue light on the front is rather bright.

Overall Review: An attractive case if I'm building a computer for somebody else, but I wouldn't put my own computer in one.

Black

APEVIA G-80MM 80mm Fan Grill
APEVIA G-80MM 80mm Fan Grill

Pros: They do their job - they are fan grills.

Cons: Um...

Overall Review: I didn't look closely, I thought these would be steel-colored. However, they are painted black. Doesn't change anything really, just not what I expected.

Excellent for the price

BFG Tech GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Support Video Card BFGE86512GTOCFE
BFG Tech GeForce 8600 GT 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Support Video Card BFGE86512GTOCFE

Pros: Great performance for the price, most other cards at this price point are 8500s. Scores a 5.8 in Aero Graphics and a 6.4 in Gaming Graphics in the Windows 7 Experience Index.

Cons: Slightly loud fan. Supposed to come with two DVI-VGA converters, but there was only one in the box.

Overall Review: Excellent for the price. Can run Dungeons & Dragons Online and Portal at maximum settings @1280x1024. An excellent budget card.