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JOSH W.

JOSH W.

Joined on 02/05/03

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 19
Most Favorable Review

solid but expensive

Shuttle Glamor XPC SN78SH7 AMD Socket AM2+ / AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 8200 1 x HDMI Barebone
Shuttle Glamor XPC SN78SH7 AMD Socket AM2+ / AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 8200 1 x HDMI Barebone

Pros: Looks are highly subjective, but I think this is nice. This shuttle supports the latest AMD processors, has decent on board video and makes a good htpc. It is not hard at all to work on. The board has a PCIe slot, so you can turn this into a gaming machine if you want to. As long as you keep the power draw low, this is a rather quiet machine too. The consolidation of exhaust and cpu fan is quite elegant, and is something I've admired since my first XPC back in the nforce2\Athlon XP era.

Cons: The power supply while quite capable, has to make due with a small fan and can get noisy with high loads. There is no vibration dampening for the hard drive which is actually the noisiest thing in my computer because of that. Had shuttle switched the pcie and pci slots around, games would have much more options with video cards. While the north bridge fan is not very noisy, it would have been nice of Shuttle to go with a passive option.

Overall Review: I really like the tidy packages shuttle puts together, but for less money you can build your own 780g micro atx computer that isn't much bigger. Over all, this is a great product that can be used for a wide variety of purposes.

Most Critical Review

Decent radiator, Poor Condition

Swiftech Quiet Power MCR220-QP Liquid Cooler Radiator
Swiftech Quiet Power MCR220-QP Liquid Cooler Radiator

Pros: This radiator serves up bare minimal flow restriction, and has great cooling capacity. The fin spacing is sparse enough that low speed fans can easily push or pull air through it making it ideal for quiet set ups. The brass tubes have very low thermal resistance, as I was impressed how fast it cooled off when I held it up to the AC vent. The shroud\frame has enough clearance from the tubes and fins, that you shouldn't have too many issues with damaging them while trying to mount the radiator.

Cons: Normally, I would bore you guys with nit picky stuff like how the screws were loose inside the box, or how poor the paint job is, however my radiator showed up so dirty that the screws and such just aren't worth mentioning. Besides smelling awful, the radiator was dusty, and even worse, there were lots of little black particles (paint chips perhaps?) inside the unit! I spent several hours cleaning and flushing out this radiator before I felt comfortable using it. Imagine if someone got this unit and didn't clean it out thoroughly before using it. These little chips could easily clog a water block or even damage the pump.

Overall Review: Hopefully, the condition in which I found my unit is a rare glitch, as quite frankly, I hold used garbage at garage sales to a higher standard than this "new" item. Now that I've gotten it cleaned, it is a decent radiator. Had it been cleaned, sealed and packaged correctly, I'd probably be giving it 4 eggs for the price.

Great Value

be quiet! Pure Wings 2 120mm PWM
be quiet! Pure Wings 2 120mm PWM

Pros: Air to noise ratio

Cons: No rubber feet

Overall Review: These are great pwm fans for the money. The only issue I have is the lack of vibration dampening. Not a problem if you are using just one, but if you use a few the vibrations add up to a ringing affect on an aluminum case.

10/18/2021

What a new high end card should be.

GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 980 4GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 G-SYNC Support Video Card GV-N980D5-4GD-B
GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 980 4GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 G-SYNC Support Video Card GV-N980D5-4GD-B

Pros: I bought this card to replace a radeon 7970 (high end 2 - 3 years ago). Last week I was playing Watch Dogs at 1080p with mostly medium\high settings, and dealing with a lot of lag, but with the GTX 980 I am running at native 1440p with mostly maxed settings with barely an occasional stutter in a loading zone. Watch Dogs is much more immersive when looking good and running smooth. Perhaps the coolest new feature is Dynamic Super Resolution (DSR in the control panel). This is a great gift to older\less demanding games where a new cards power is usually wasted. I gave Skyrim and Assassin's Creed 4 a go with DSR enabled at 3x and 2x respectively, and it looked incredible. This card has a nice compliment of up to date digital outputs, and runs nice and quiet.

Cons: The cooler's shroud has a LED Geforce GTX decal that's bright enough to be seen through two layers of electrical tape. I'd probably list that as a pro if only there were an off switch...

Overall Review: Performance wise, this card earns 4 eggs for doing what a high end card should, but doing it with less power and heat, plus offering Dynamic Super Resolution earns this card the 5th egg.

Solid Performance, No Need to Waste Electricity

Intel Core i3-4130T - Core i3 4th Gen Haswell Dual-Core 2.9 GHz LGA 1150 35W Intel HD Graphics 4400 Desktop Processor - BX80646I34130T
Intel Core i3-4130T - Core i3 4th Gen Haswell Dual-Core 2.9 GHz LGA 1150 35W Intel HD Graphics 4400 Desktop Processor - BX80646I34130T

Pros: Core i is certainly potent, and even with fewer cores and slower clocks, there's still plenty of power for my daily tasks. This processor games very well and is at least respectable in processor heavy jobs such as video\audio encoding. Hyper threading is nice to have, but of course it doesn't replace two extra cores in heavy work loads, but for the price, I can't complain.

Cons: The (not so) integrated heat spreader makes very poor contact with the processor, so temperatures are needlessly high even with aftermarket cooling. I removed the IHS, cleaned up the chip and glue, then replaced the IHS with liquid metal heatsink compound, and that greatly reduced my temperatures, but I doubt most people would want to do that. btw, the temp difference is 48C before, 33 After.

Overall Review: I bought this processor as a place holder hoping an i5 T series was on the horizon, but I'm actually satisfied enough with the performance that I probably won't bother upgrading if\when a 35 - 45 watt quad core comes out.

10/22/2013

Great Case, Greater Potential

Corsair Obsidian Series 650D (CC650DW-1) Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Case
Corsair Obsidian Series 650D (CC650DW-1) Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Case

Pros: I love the looks first of all. The outside is classy and simple, with nothing gaudy to tarnish it. The inside is easy to keep neat thanks to the generous grommet cable routing system. The size is perfect too, as it's easy to work in, yet it isn't a monstrosity. Cooling is good, but not great, but the built in fan controller makes it easy to keep things quiet. The external SATA adapter is a courteous touch, but I'd rather have space for a triple radiator.

Cons: Complaints are few. The drive bay covers are stupid hard to replace, the USB3 setup is less than elegant, and I can't imagine what they were thinking packaging this case in that awful static electrical generating sack.

Overall Review: As good as this case is out of the box, there is so much potential to be better. Corsair should sell an optional top panel that replaces the external SATA with support for a 3 fan radiator. An aftermarket front panel could also be made with support for a front mounted radiator. I'd also be willing to by a panel with a glass window, as the stock one scratches easily.(nothing a little windex and car wax won't fix) If Corsair does a revision of this case, there is room in the back to replace the 12cm fan with a 14cm. Also, another centimeter or two between the motherboard tray and the right side panel would be very helpful.

10/23/2011