Joined on 03/05/15
Pros: * Easy install as boot drive for win 8.1 * Hands down the fastest SSD in the consumer market * Issue free
Overall Review: If you are buying this to speed boot time, you are making a mistake. Most of cold boot time is before control is passed to the boot loader from the BIOS. The drive takes one or two seconds to initialize, so no real difference in boot time. If you are complaining about no significant boost over a standard SSD in overall performance, you likely did not go to the Intel site and load their drivers. The drivers built into win 8.1, for example, will make the drive go, but you need the Intel version to make it go vroom! Do you research and don't complain. Also, it is not enough to check the compatibility of your mobo with the manufacturer's website. You must also know what version of BIOS for the mobo is required. Even for X99 boards, you may have to upgrade your BIOS before it will function as a boot drive. Again, do you research and don't complain. If your review was found to be unhelpful by a lot of people, one of the above probably applies.
Great Basic Replacement Board
Pros: * When I discovered that my old mobo had failed; I was worried. It is getting harder and harder to find new LGA 1150 motherboards, especially at a reasonable price. * This replaces an Asrock H81M-DGS mobo. For $52 it is a great value. * The UEFI BIOS is excellent. * I can't explain this, but after putting the computer back together with a new mobo, I was expecting that Win 10 would claim it is not activated, requiring me to buy a new license. Pure win that it is similar enough to the old board, perhaps. YMMV.
Cons: * I am a little worried going with Asrock. I have only owned one other Asrock board and it failed after 2.5 years of moderate use. It is hard to say exactly what happened or whom, if anyone, is to blame. On the other hand, to find the right form factor board with the right socket new and at the right price means I chose this board. * Board came with a fairly old version of its UEFI-BIOS (version 1.10, not even listed on the support page); it worked for my system, but check carefully for yourself. If you need nVME support, or if you are having USB3.0 issues with this board, you will need to update the BIOS. If you want to run a G3258, you will need a different processor that is originally on the support list just to update the BIOS. Please see the manufacturer's web page on support for this board for more information.
Overall Review: * I am thinking about grabbing a second one of these boards at this price in case another one of my LGA1150 based motherboards dies. It works, it is cheap, and it is new.
Why I bought this instead of the MSI Gaming X
Pros: After preferring MSI (be it red or green flavored) for a long time, I took a long hard look at the $70ish premium the Gaming X fetches, I decided this card would be fine. My reasoning: 1.) I am not interested in LED lighting. 2.) While the MSI model has a much better cooler design, the huge thermal improvement generation over generation makes it irrelevant. 3.) It seems that the variance for the 1080 chip is not as wide. Less difference means binning is less important as is winning the silicon lottery. When considering all three of these factors and the ouch factor on my wallet, I bought this card instead of the MSI model. I am very happy with my decision. Packaging was just so-so.The card was easy to install. There is only one eight pin power connector, and if you have a 6+2 and the mating is not correct, the card will tell you (if you are looking at your monitor) that it needz power. Having resolved this only issue, I was up in no time. The driver disc was hilariously blank, but whatever; I already had NVIDIA GeForce Experience installed; I got my drivers installed in a snap. The benchmarks I have achieved after overclocking are more or less the same as numbers reported in reviews of most of the other 1080s on the market (not just MSI) peak boost clock at 2050 - 2150MHz. I was able to maintain 2050MHz stable. I get about 23,900 on Firestrike and 11,300 on Firestrike Extreme (Graphics scores only). This also compares favorably with virtually all of the other 1080s at least +- 2.5%. It was not worth more for a very small or no gain. My game play experience is just super smooth and I could not be happier with it.
Cons: Yes, there is some coil whine. It is the expected result when you try to do unnatural things with your videocard. For example, running PerformanceTest 8.0, some pause screens, pretty much every thing that produces hundreds of unnecessary frames per second. Under normal gaming conditions (1080p,1440p, or 2160p at 60Hz for me,) it is not noticeable. I am using an open air case at the moment and I don't use headphones. I tried out a few triple A titles to test. No coil whine when gaming with V-SYNCH on. A little bit of whine in a few titles with V-Synch off, but none of the AAA titles I own. Also, the app that Gigabyte has for overclocking is total crapware. MSI Afterburner Beta 4.3.0 is what you need for overclocking..
Overall Review: I would definitely recommend this product. I would buy again, and am considering a second for SLI. But another $630 is too painful at the moment. I hope this is still available after I scrape up enough for another one.
I Love the Packaging
Pros: * Most of the pros listed by other reviewers.<br><br>* This is a bare drive. It does not come with any packaging, it does not come with any accessories at all. This is a good thing to me. SATA power cable comes with your PSU, and SATA data cable comes with your mobo. Nothing else is required. My drive arrived encased in an envelope made out of a SealedAir type product. Just take drive out of envelope, install, puncture the air pockets, and deposit small amount of plastic resin in the recycle bin. Absolutely nothing went to waste.
Cons: None that I am aware of. Other reviewers might be unhappy with the speed in various situations, but that is a trade off you expect to make to save power, IMO.<br><br>I noticed some reviewers got drives that were DOA. I wonder if the packaging has been the same for some time; it was so protected that I doubt the UPS guy could have damaged it if he had wanted to. Maybe there was a bad batch of drives. Maybe they were handled roughly prior to the bare drive packaging I described in 'Pros' I don't know really. But I would be happy to RMA the device if it were DOA. I have almost always gotten good service from NewEgg.
Overall Review: If you are using this as a backup drive or for non-time critical data, this drive is ideal. If you are running an app that needs a fast drive, don't keep your data on this drive; pick a drive that is more suitable for your application. Edit: 2,600 operating hours later and disk is still running perfectly. Not a single bad sector, crc error or any other SMART data to be concerned with.