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Gagniuc A.

Gagniuc A.

Joined on 04/20/07

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 29
Most Favorable Review

Holey [removed]

CORSAIR DOMINATOR 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TR3X6G1600C8D
CORSAIR DOMINATOR 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TR3X6G1600C8D

Pros: Too many to list. Fast, reliable, and is it not overclockable? Reliable as ever; never had a problem with Corsair memory. The cooling fins look incredible - just had to throw that in there. DDR3 can do magic. Go to Nvidia Forums, look for CUDA Programming and Development, and look for a thread titled "x58 Chipset PCIE Bandwidth." There you will find an interesting discussion (and real performance data) of how fast DDR3 triple channel with Core i7 really is.

Cons: If you find any cons, contact me...

Overall Review: Ok, I want to correct some misconceptions about these modules. They are not DDR3 1066 MHz stock. The only reason hey run at 1066 is because the Core i7's memory controller is rated at 1066 MHz; anything above that overclocks the CPU's memory controller. These are actually DDR3 1333 sticks with huge overclocking potential. They have SPD settings for 1333MHz @ 9-10-10-25 and 1.5V (standard for DDR3). There's also an XMP Profile set for 1600 @ 8-8-8-24 and 1.65V; here's where the overclocking is, but they're guaranteed to work at these settings. So if you want to operate these anywhere above Intel's slow 1066MHz, you will have to dig through the BIOS and increase speed yourself. THAT IS DUE TO THE CPU, NOT THE STICKS!!! Luckily, all you have to do is select XMP Profile 1 and it will run at its true potential.

12/15/2008
Most Critical Review

BEWARE: This is NOT a SAS backplane

StarTech SATSAS425BK Mini SAS to 4x 2.5in SATA/SAS 5.25in Hot Swap Backplane
StarTech SATSAS425BK Mini SAS to 4x 2.5in SATA/SAS 5.25in Hot Swap Backplane

Pros: It has a mini-SAS connector on the back, so less cable clutter.

Cons: The little disk trays are nothing more than flat piece of aluminium with a plastic lock on the end. NO FREAKING GUIDE RAILS for the tray. The trays rattle inside freely. If you dare put a drive in it, the only thing that prevents the tray from rattling is the SAS/SATA connector. It's the tray that's supposed to hold the connector in place, not the other way around. The tray closing mechanism is made out of cheap plastic. No matter how careful you are, the risk of breaking it is high. The " locking mechanism that prevents unauthorized" would make you think it's a round key, like what we see on many cases. No, it's just an allen screw, and the key is an allen wrench. I can open that mechanism with my fingernail. It's advertised as having "power and activity LEDs". It has a very nice blue power LED, but no activity LED. Startech also advertises this as a "SAS backplane". A SAS backplane means it has a little chip that communicates with the SAS controller. The little chip is what turns on the two LEDs (to indicate drive selected, activity, drive fault, etc.). Not on this product. This is a simple, runt-of-the mill enclosure, not a backplane. Don't be fooled by the SAS connector. A normal backplane has a polymer capacitor per voltage line for each drive. This is to prevent brown-outs when plugging in drives from disabling drives that are already working. This product has two low-quality, old-fashioned electrolytic capacitors. They are not capable of handling the transients that come from plugging in a drive. I put a drive in, powered it on. When I plugged in a second drive, I heard the first one powering down. Try doing that when you want to recover a degraded array; your whole array is now failed. This product is NOT EVEN HOT-SWAP. You can't hot swap without killing your other drives. Did I mention it didn't work? My SAS controller couldn't detect any drives attached to this cold-swap enclosure. I opened it up out of curiosity. The signal lines on the circuit board board are not impedance-matched (Impedance matching is a very big deal in high-speed signals). This means that signals arrive at slightly different times and become desynchronized; the drive won't ever be detected.

Overall Review: I work with server hardware a lot, and I know too well how a backplane should behave. I have an HP SAS backplane with me right now, for comparison. I can take a drive out, and put a new one in, in about three seconds. With the Startech enclosure, I have to be careful when pulling the drive out, so as not to break the plastic handle. I have to be careful inserting the new drive to make sure it goes in right. I have to be careful when pushing the drive in, to make sure I don't break the SATA/SAS connector. Finally, I have to be extra careful when closing the plastic latch, to make sure I don't break the two small plastic pins holding the tray to the enclosure. The fan is louder than any of my 1U servers at full load. We've already established this enclosure is no good in a server environment. It's just as useless in a desktop or workstation I love seeing a huge variety of products and a gigantic selection. However, in the case of this product, NewEgg would be doing its customers a huge favor by not selling such an abomination. It promises server-features, it has the price of a server-oriented product, but it is nothing more than a non-working piece of aluminium. there's nothing to see here, move along.

10/11/2012

Iffy feature set in a small package

HPE OfficeConnect 1820 8G Switch (J9979A#ABA)
HPE OfficeConnect 1820 8G Switch (J9979A#ABA)

Pros: I'm not a fan of external PSUs and dangling power adapters. However, this switch more than compensates for a lack of internal PSU by accepting power over Ethernet (PoE). It can do port mirroring. Rackmount ears use flat head screws, which automatically align the ear to the switch.

Cons: - The speed indicator LEDs are all green. No orange/yellow/green to indicate speed. You have to look at it for a few seconds to see the LEDs flash before you can tell which link is where. It's very easy to mistake a flashing speed LED for activity on the link. - It does not register its system name with the local DNS server. Remember the days of looking up IPs by MAC and matching the OUI to find your device? Those days are back! - The ports are linear, not stacked. Hoping for neat cable management? Forget about it. - No ssh/telnet access - Can only be configured via the web interface or HTTPS. A very annoying quirk is that I can't configure it via the web interface. I make my settings, click "Save Configuration", and switch says it was successfully applied. However, when I open the configuration page a second time, it still has the old settings. Some pages, such as "Locator" have an "Apply" button. That one works, but "Save Configuration" does not.

Overall Review: This is a switch that does most of the things right. From the way the rack ears are aligned, to the right angle power plug, a lot of attention to detail has gone in the design. The front panel design is lacking. The most glaring choice is placing the rj-45 groups side-by-side instead of stacking them. I am not a fan of this arrangement. I think they used it because it made routing the PoE for port 1 easier, but it still bothers me. Network speed indicator LEDs are defective by design. I want green for gigabit, amber for slower links, but you don't get that with this switch. I don't like that flashing speed led rubbish. I ended up connecting my 100MB/s links on one side, so that when the speed LEDs flash, they flash in tandem. It makes things a bit easier. This is a nice, and well constructed switch. It offers an interesting feature set, but fails to offer great value for money. For the price, I would have expected an SFP port or a few PoE+ outputs. I also expected the web interface to work flawlessly, and not be bugged. I got this model because I wanted a managed switch with the new HPE logo UPDATE: I'm not sure how "persistent" the configuration is. Although the switch is configured for a static IP, after a power loss or simple reboot, it comes up with a random IP. Several times, it came up as 192.168.1.1, which happens to be the gateway on my subnet. ARP replies flooding the network, redirecting packets, and bringing down the entire network. All because of an idiotic choice of default IP.

Very nicely designed product (not working)

ORICO Monster USB 3.0 PCI - Express Card with 5 Rear USB 3.0 Ports and 1x Internal USB 3.0 20-PIN Connector Controller Adapter Card (PVU3-502I)
ORICO Monster USB 3.0 PCI - Express Card with 5 Rear USB 3.0 Ports and 1x Internal USB 3.0 20-PIN Connector Controller Adapter Card (PVU3-502I)

Pros: It comes with a 4-pin molex power plug, which is far more practical than the SATA power plugs most of these adapters come with. the power plug is oriented towards the rear, not upwards, which makes cable management much easier. The internal USB3 header is a nice touch, and also oriented in a direction which makes cable management much easier. Somebody was thinking! I also like the black backplate. Very nice touch and attention to detail.

Cons: It does not work. The PCIe side is detected by the OS, but when plugging in any USB device, it's not detected.

Overall Review: Great idea, but the product does not work. Now that I've bought this again recently, I realized I also purchased this card three years ago, and had the same problems with it. Customer support tries to be helpful, but there is a language barrier, so I gave up.

Workstation user? Stay away

Logitech Wireless Performance Mouse MX for PC and Mac, Large Mouse, Long Range Wireless Mouse
Logitech Wireless Performance Mouse MX for PC and Mac, Large Mouse, Long Range Wireless Mouse

Pros: It's a a solid build, got some good weight to it, slides really easy. Three year warranty!

Cons: And this is the downfall of this mouse: it's a wireless only mouse. The only thing the USB cable does is charge it. The wireless receiver is terrible. From as little as 2.5 ft away from the receiver, the mouse is glitchy. At three feet, it's unusable. That wouldn't be an issue if I could just plug in the USB cable and use it as a wired mouse.

Overall Review: If you're like me, and like to use desktops and workstations to do work, this mouse can greatly disappoint you. I keep my workstation on the floor, several feet from my hand. Plugging the receiver there just doesn't work. You need to bring in a USB cable to the top of the desk to charge the mouse. Now you need another cable for the receiver. How is this more convenient than a wired mouse? If you're lucky enough to have a monitor with a good USB hub that doesn't introduce too much latency, you might be able to plug the receiver in the monitor, and avoid the mess of too many USB cables. At home, I have a G700 mouse that I purchased in 2010. The G700 can work either over wireless, or over USB. In fact, when a USB cable was plugged in, it would only talk over USB. I've only used it wired. I can't believe that a newer mouse in the same price range lacks these features. On an unrelated note, I purchased the Performance MX over the MX Master, because of it's three year warranty, as opposed to the Master's one year warranty.

11/15/2015

Great hardware, sub-par firmware

Corsair Gaming K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard - Red LED - Cherry MX Red Switches
Corsair Gaming K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard - Red LED - Cherry MX Red Switches

Pros: The construction is amazing. The keyboard is very heavy and feels quite sturdy. It won't slide across the desk by accidentally bumping it.

Cons: It does not play very well under linux. The Caps Lock, Num Lock, and Scroll Lock LEDs do not work under linux. Setting the swithch on the back of the keyboard to "BIOS" will make the The Caps Lock and Num Lock LEDs work as expected, but the NumLock LED will flash, being very distracting. Pressing one of the three keys that adjust the backlight will send keycodes to the OS. Some of those codes correspond to "search", "refresh", or "launch calculator app" codes. This is very annoying. The key caps are made of painted plastic. The paint is not difficult to scratch with a fingernail. The backlight, on its lowest setting, is too bright when the keyboard is used in a dark setting, as the keys are too bright to see clearly.

Overall Review: While I can adjust the OS to ignore the extra keycodes sent by the keyboard, there is nothing that can be to get the three indicator lights (CapsLock, etc) to operate correctly. The lack of a functional CapsLock indicator makes partiularly impractical for typing, terminal work, and programming. Because of this, the only area where this keyboard provides a better experience compared to other keyboards I have used is in gaming. For its price range, I have expected this keyboard to work out of the box. Needing to make extra settings to compensate for the erroneous keycodes is inconvenient at best, and should not something to be concerned with from a flagship product. The indicator lights issue is the big killer for me. It makes me wonder how much quality control really went into this product. Hooking up the keyboard to a linux machine is not difficult. it would easily have exposed this issue. Another concern I have about this keyboard is its upgradeable firmware. Once someone figures out how to upload firmware without Corsair's software, it's very easy to inject a malignant firmware. It is simple to write firmware for the NXP microcontroller in this keyboard. That firmware could implement a keylogger via a secondary USB interface, unbeknownst to the OS.

11/29/2014