Katrina J.

Katrina J.

Joined on 10/15/03


Product Reviews
Seller Reviews
product reviews
  • 37
Most Favorable Review

Really sweet and stylish gamer board!

MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
MSI Z77A-GD65 Gaming LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: * Installation & Motherboard Layout -- A roomy ATX board with very nice design. Four RAM slots to accommodate my four RAM modules which have full size heat spreaders. There's a header for USB 3.0 if you have a newer case, and the front panel quick connectors are a very nice touch. There are five fan headers - a CPU fan header and four SYS fan headers which are nice, though only two of the four can utilize fan speed control in the BIOS. The board also has onboard power, reset, and "OC Genie" buttons to make verifying and troubleshooting your build easier even outside of a case. There's also an LED 2-digit debug code readout that can also display your CPU temp (OS-dependent, I am testing in Win 7, though the manual indicates this will work in XP and Windows 8 also). -- The manual is seriously one of the most well-written and illustrated of all the products I've bought or evaluated (I have seen my share of lousy ones,) helping make building this system a breeze and answering every question I encountered about the features. * UEFI BIOS Interface -- Fairly easy to navigate IMO, though first-timers may need the manual. An improvement over legacy BIOS menus. I personally love the red-and-black color scheme. This is the first system I've built where I'm leaving the boot logo display on instead of setting it to display POST information. * I/O & Peripherals: -- SATA III (AHCI) performance is excellent. Two SATA 6Gb/s & Four 3Gb/s from the Z77 chipset and two more SATA 6Gb/s ports on an ASM1061 Asmedia controller. My cheap ADATA SSD is performing better than on two previous AMD builds and it's definitely noticeable. -- RAID Options: 0/1/5/10 on SATA Ports 1-6 - I'd love to do a RAID 5 for capacity + redundancy with three 2TB HDD's in the future. -- Audio was great for me, using an 8-year old analog 5.1 speaker system connected to the motherboard ports. -- Killer LAN works great, with some nice driver features such as traffic management, which I've never seen before in an on-board LAN. -- PCI-E 3.0 16x (8x/8x or 8x/4x/4x with multi-GPU configurations) - PCI-E 3.0 is twice the bandwidth of 2.0 so don't be thrown off by the lane speeds if you're coming from AMD (as I was), as long as your multi-GPU setup is PCI-E 3.0 you'll be golden with an Ivy Bridge CPU. Take note that another reviewer stated he's getting 8x/8x with a non-GPU device in the third lane.

Cons: After a weeks' evaluation I could find nothing I'd call a con. Some might find the green color of the debug LED display to clash if they have a windowed case. There are also a number of other blue LEDs on the board.

Overall Review: * Build Information --- The Windows Experience Index isn't a great benchmark but it is easy to compare system to system using it, so that's why I mention WEI rather than specialized benchmarks. RAM and Storage scores can be indicator of controller performance. These are based on Windows 7's ratings, which cap at 7.9. I plan to update my review for this board when I get Windows 8 and/or hardware upgrades (Core i5 3570k, multi-GPU config). - WEI 7.2 - Processor: Ivy Bridge Intel Core i3-3220 3.3 GHz Dual Core (stock cooling but replaced the thermal pad with Arctic Silver 5) - WEI 7.6 - RAM: Intel XMP Extreme Memory Profile worked with ease to configure my (4GBx4 DDR3-1866 CL9) G. Skill Ripjaws X - WEI 7.1/7.1 - Desktop/Gaming Graphics: EVGA GeForce GT 640 2GB (standing in for a future upgrade) - WEI 7.9 - Primary Storage: ADATA S511 120GB for boot/system & a Seagate 500GB SATA3 drive for data - No crashes/hangs after 1 week burn-in (Borderlands 2, Kingdoms of Amalur, and some MMOs were played regularly during this time) - Powered by a PC Power & Cooling Silencer Mk III 400w Modular PSU * Overclocking Features --- This board is built with the enthusiast in mind and the BIOS options reflect that. Power users can fine tune everything you'd expect with an overclocking board, and take comfort in the failsafe that a secondary BIOS provides. Unfortunately, at present, I have a processor with a locked multiplier, and only the stock cooling kit - so I can't more thoroughly evaluate the OC features. * Bottom Line --- This is a really sweet board for a tinkerer and a gamer, but it's also a great board for an typical internet and multimedia consumer who just wants confidence in the stability of the most difficult piece of hardware in a system to replace.

Most Critical Review

Solid router, but too pricey. Not a fan of the firmware.

Linksys EA6500 V2 AC1750 Wi-Fi Wireless Dual-Band+ Router with Gigabit, Smart Wi-Fi App Enabled, Open Source supported
Linksys EA6500 V2 AC1750 Wi-Fi Wireless Dual-Band+ Router with Gigabit, Smart Wi-Fi App Enabled, Open Source supported

Pros: * Appearance: The product itself is attractive and has the top-end build quality I'd expect from this brand. * Installation: The CD-based installation process and browser-based firmware interface has a visually nice design.. * Router: I had a stronger / further signal range than I've ever gotten with the three or more routers I've previously owned while living at my present area. Many of my home devices are only 802.11g and this is the first router I've owned that gives "5/5 bars" everywhere in my apartment. * Other features: USB printing service functions well, but it required installation of software onto the networked computers to access it. The Cisco driver creates a virtual USB hub to access the USB device(s) connected to the router. Also, network video/music sharing (DLNA) worked (though I only had 480p video stored; I tested streaming to XBOX360 over Wi-Fi with good results.)

Cons: * Installation: As a hobbyist/techie, I find mandatory software-guided installation for a router a bit irritating, and the lack of any kind of printed manual/guide in a $200 MSRP product almost insulting. Since that's merely personal preference (and maybe some trees were saved) I'm not deducting an egg. * Other features: I got horrible transfer speeds (~60 kilobytes per second at best) when using an externally-powered USB 2.0 WD MyBook drive as the attached storage device. (Drive was tested, both with about 50% capacity, and after freshly formatting.) I feel the router menu should have offered more dynamic instruction (tips) on configuring USB devices. Printer sharing was practically a hidden feature in the USB devices menu. I had to install a Virtual USB driver onto my computers in order to see the printer. ## -1 Egg for this because this is enough to make me revert to using my previous router that does both USB-related functions better. * Usability: I think the modular (widget style) interface is nice for intermediate users and individuals who are more adept with a smartphone than home networking, but it was honestly harder to navigate than any router I've configured in the last 12 years. I'm not entirely a luddite and I've been using smartphones, tablets, and even Windows 8 for a while now, but I like what I'm familiar with when it comes to networking equipment and router firmwares. I don't think this is a place where a dramatic UI transition was really necessary. I hope Linksys/Cisco will consider allowing installation of third-party firmware in the future, or perhaps add an optional "text mode" navigation menu that resembles the old style. ## -1 Egg: The main menu is not verbose enough to be out-of-the-box intuitive. Until I set this up, I haven't had to look at a manual or support site just to configure on-the-box features for a router since 2003.

Overall Review: * Other features - My previous $80 Belkin router had superior network printing service and network accessible storage. I did not have to install any Virtual USB driver on my computers with that configuration, and I was able to browse to the devices normally on my local network. I always felt that the 1 to 2 megabyte per second transfer speeds my old router achieved with the MyBook drive were weak, but I was only getting around 60kbytes/s with this router. I would like to have tested other external drives to verify the poor performance of the Linksys router, but neither my spare USB flash drive nor my self-powered WD MyPassport drive were recognized by this router (to be fair, they didn't work on the Belkin router either). * Other thoughts - This is an expensive router, with more features than I could adequately test with what I own over three weeks. I've used a lot of routers in the past 12 years, but this is the first one that *really* needed a basic paper manual just to help someone like me get over one's expectations on the firmware management interface. Reducing the number of words in the navigation bar and reducing a traditional branching menu into a combination branched and tabbed interface MIGHT make it look prettier but it doesn't help user friendliness. I plan to give the router another try in a couple months, as Linksys/Cisco are taking an active interest in addressing most complaints about the router. Even if they don't improve the interface, I would be psyched if this router's USB functions actually outperformed my old router. It would be worth it. * Bottom line: - The premium features are not well executed compared to other products I have personal experience with. - The router and wireless access point are solid, but there's a learning curve with the firmware that (in my opinion) could be aided by a cheat-sheet user guide or basic manual, adding more tips to the interface, or providing an optional branching navigation.

well... i really, really wanted this shield.

Zagg Invisibleshield Screen For Samsung Galaxy S4 FFSAMGALS4S
Zagg Invisibleshield Screen For Samsung Galaxy S4 FFSAMGALS4S

Pros: It's an excellent shield when correctly applied. though small bubbles tend to form even when applied professionally, they go away within a day or two. the level of guaranteed protection is supposedly the best in the industry. i can feel the thickness and gel texture is different from typical film shields.

Cons: It's veryyyy difficult to apply without practice compared to typical film shields. expensive even at newegg's price if you want to buy several if you're worried about screwing up install.

Overall Review: i wound up damaging this during application (if you take too long you can overstretch the material) and spending another $40 total at the local big box for the same product with professional installation and tax. honestly it's a great product ...when correctly installed. I've had a dozen electronic devices (DS, 3DS, PSP, PSPgo, Vita, phones, e-readers, tablets..) over the past 5+ years and have no problem getting film-type screen protectors installed flawlessly. i knew this one had a different installation process and i read the docs thoroughly several times over. watched the videos. still messed it up. go with less expensive plastic film screen protectors if you're not confident with your success in a slippery, wet adventure :/ TechArmor makes great film protectors as an alternative.

Great refurb

Logitech Recertified 980-000319 Z523 40 Watts RMS 2.1 Speaker System
Logitech Recertified 980-000319 Z523 40 Watts RMS 2.1 Speaker System

Pros: * zero problems with the system. works exactly as it should. packaging was old and beat up a bit, but product itself looks new. there was plastic film on the speaker facades so they are glossy and had no scratches. * more powerful than i can test, volume wise. i live in an apartment and can't put the knobs past the halfway mark without stuff around my desk rattling and the floor vibrating. * bargain refurb price!

Cons: temptation to blast my music loud enough to get complaints..?

Overall Review: it's not a 5.1 system or better, so if you want true realism for theater/gaming, this would be a compromise. i personally chose this because i have a 5.1 system set up at my dad's and reconnecting the cables after a move is always a pain in the backside.. i just wanted solid, loud sound with a good sub and minimal cables in case i need to move. this is it!

Sweet low-power machine.

Foxconn nt-A3500-0h0WWAEQB AMD A45 (Hudson D1) White Mini / Booksize Barebone System
Foxconn nt-A3500-0h0WWAEQB AMD A45 (Hudson D1) White Mini / Booksize Barebone System

Pros: - Sweet appearance. Thought I would've preferred black but this was what was on sale and I don't regret choosing the white. - All ports and the card reader worked. (Couldn't test SPDIF but it glows..) - Wi-Fi works fine (I checked, and the cables were not reversed as other reviewers have experienced). - Actually has a decent (loud, though mono) internal speaker to my surprise. Better volume than my HDMI monitor's internal speakers. - Good experience installing my favorite flavor of Ubuntu, Lubuntu 12.04 -- Though currently running Windows 7 Pro x64 with no issues. - Did not buy this for gaming and wouldn't recommend it for modern gaming, but I've found some older DirectX 8 and 9 games are well off with this unit. For example, I play Final Fantasy XI with some high-resolution enhancing tweaks and it runs beautifully. - Extremely low power draw under active use! Kill-A-Watt meter shows between 18 and 22 watts (with an SSD for what it's worth), this is less than the 25w bulb in my lava lamp.

Cons: Intended to use a 4GB ram stick hijacked from my laptop with this but it would not post with the high performance ADATA module. Went to a local store and got an 8GB Kingston module (the only 8GB one on the approved vendor list found on their support site) and it works great. The manufacturer recommended memory list should have been provided with the documentation or on the devices' specs page. I would never have found it if another Newegg reviewer had not mentioned its existence. I strongly dislike tab/latch secured plastic panels and mine was warped (it can't "seal") near the DVI port, brand new out-of-the-box. This case was not designed to be opened more than a couple times and it probably wouldn't have cost them any more in the manufacturing end to put a little better engineering into the access panel. Minus one egg for this.

Overall Review: My VESA mounting kit is not loose, it fits securely on the back of my ASUS 23.6" 1080p monitor. Paired this with an inexpensive Encore external 7.1 USB sound card because my Logitech 5.1 speaker system is great- but it's from 2004 and doesn't support SPDIF. I now have a great Hi-Fi, extremely low power system that doesn't make me flinch about running it 24/7 for music and web browsing. When ~1.5TB-2TB 2.5" HDDs become more affordable, it will be a great media server as well. I live in Texas and am always concerned about heat generation. The E-350 APU has a much higher max temp rating than conventional CPUs so don't be alarmed with 85c temp readings, as this is designed to be safe up to 90c. Fortunately, the system's low power exhaust doesn't actually pump out much hot air when compared to my slim XBOX or even my 15.6" AMD A6-4400M 2.7GHz laptop.

Charges my phone great

IOGEAR GearPower Susan G. Komen Edition Portable Battery Pack GMP1001PP (Pink)
IOGEAR GearPower Susan G. Komen Edition Portable Battery Pack GMP1001PP (Pink)

Pros: Does a solid job of recharging my LG Optimus Regard (Android 4.0.4) and does so fairly quickly when the screen's off. Does charge my Nexus 7 tablet slowly also. I haven't managed to deplete it to less than 15% to test if it will fully charge it, though. Did get it to charge from ~65% to 100%.

Cons: For the price I paid ($19.99, not counting rebate) I don't see any. However, I'd need a better indicator of remaining charge in this device to give it 5 eggs.

Overall Review: It powers my Raspberry Pi mini computer but lifetime varies a bit (peripherals like a Wireless 802.11n dongle can make a huge impact). I think as a battery designed specifically to charge batteries, what it does best, is to recharge my phone. I can manage if my tablet dies, I'm happy with the product as long as I can fully recharge my phone.

seller reviews
  • 1

Great purchase!

Bought a beautiful men's Tungsten Carbide ring from this seller, arrived quickly & safely; enclosed business card and flyer made the transaction feel a little more personal. Thrilled with the quality of the ring for the price.

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