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Matthew H.

Matthew H.

Joined on 12/27/08

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 53
Most Favorable Review

My Eggxpert Review - Asus P8Z68-V Pro / Gen 3

ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

Pros: A Great Stable Product from Asus! Pros of this product include.... 1. UEFI BIOS (Click/Mouse performance and Keyboard are stable along with a great deal of overclocking features for a mid-level board.) 2. 4 x SATA 6Gb/s connectors (Compared to 2x 6Gb/s on the P8Z68-V board) 3. RAID support for 0,1,5,10 4. DIGI+ VRM (Great for power consumption control and clean overclocking power) 5. BT GO! (Bluetooth) Support 6. PCIe 3.0 complaint slots (Supported with Ivy Bridge) 7. Future Ivy Bridge Support (upgrade compliant) Overclocking options galore..... 1. Offset Mode (Allow you to set the Load and Idle voltage while overclocking. Great for this generation of CPU's. Voltage kills the 2nd Gen i series not Heat.) 2. GPU Boost (allows you to overclock Intel's IGPU "Onboard GPU) 3. TPU (For beginner overclockers) 4. 16 Phase Power Design ( 12 for your CPU and 4 for the IGPU) 5. ASUS CrashFree BIOS 3 Other good mentioning's.... 1. Duel-Quad SLI/ Duel-Tri-Quad Xfire 2. PhysX

Cons: Some are Cons and some are just not relevant yet.... 1.PCIe 3.0 (While it is great to have this lord knows if next Gen GPU's will even support PCIe 3.0. So until then it is really useless because not many things support it yet) 2. Missing of some voltage readings (While this board has great overclocking options it is missing some important Voltage readings in the BIOS. Example System Agent voltage reading. A normal overclocker shouldn't touch it. But since it is touchy and could cause damage if set wrong. It would be good to know what it is.) 3. No heat pipe design like on Deluxe version ( does not make that great of a deal difference but when water cooling it will still give that extra bit of cooling maybe needed when there is lack of airflow going over the VRM's) 4. VRM Heat Sink design (While they provide decent cooling some Heat Sinks will have issues with clearance) 5. Extra cost just for the PCIe 3.0 (compared to the PCIe 2.0 variant. 6. Asus Monitor software is buggy

Overall Review: This is a great board with a lot more features then I can really list here in this little space. But some added things I can tell you is... Pop your CPU in and overclocking is a breeze. Raise it up to you desired Multiplier and set the offset voltage and your done. While there are some slight down falls they aren't really enough to remove Eggs from its rating. If you are in the market for a great board to go with your 2nd Gen i3/i5/i7 and you don't wanna spend of $300 Bucks for the top boards.. this board it what you want. Not only for aesthetics, but also for performance and options. Asus did really design a great board here, and this is coming from a Gigabyte Fan Boy! So far I have used most of the options on this board including MemOkay Asus EZFlash LucidLogix Asus EPU And so on.... I can tell you that in every instance of just playing around with these options they all work flawlessly. So with that said scale from 1-10 Features 10 Price 9 (Because of the sale price)

Most Critical Review

Great Fan Buy It! But only if you expect to use it as a Exhaust Fan!

XIGMATEK FCB (Fluid Circulative Bearing) Cooling System XLF XLF-F2006 200mm LED Blue Case Fan PSU Molex Adapter/extender included
XIGMATEK FCB (Fluid Circulative Bearing) Cooling System XLF XLF-F2006 200mm LED Blue Case Fan PSU Molex Adapter/extender included

Pros: The LED's are awesome. Yes they are white and the contrast between the white LED's and the blue blades are awesome! It will fit in the Cooler Master Sniper, HAF cases, Corsair 600T, NZXT Phantom. Also the fan is very quiet. But it does push allot of air so you get the best of both worlds!

Cons: But here is the bad news and the two reasons I gave it 3 eggs instead of 5. This fan only comes with the mounting screws to install it as a exhaust fan. The way the mounting holes are made makes it impossible to mount it any other way accept for exhaust with normal case screws. In order to install this fan as a intake you must first buy 4 screws and nuts to hold it down. Very bad planning on Xigmatech's part. You would think with such a great looking fan they would want to make it more versatile. Not only are the mounting holes on one side. But the second holes they could of used for mounting (To make it more compatible with more cases) they never finished punching the hole through the fan. Last the fan again is beautiful. But when you buy a 20 dollar fan you expect the best. Then why not sleeve the cable. It would have taken 10 cents to finish this fan off to make it complete.

Overall Review: Xigmatech did a almost perfect job with this fan. But because they ALMOST did a great job on this fan. I can only ALMOST tell you to buy it! If you need a 200MM exhaust fan then don't hesitate. But if you need a fan that does everything you need it to do right out of the box. Just know that this one will cost you extra just to get it going.

Great board But it should work the first time

ASUS MAXIMUS VI IMPACT LGA 1150 Intel Z87 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
ASUS MAXIMUS VI IMPACT LGA 1150 Intel Z87 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard

Pros: You won't find another mini itx board with this many features! Great overclocking ability.... is even more accurate with voltages than its bigger brothers.

Cons: Returned the first one I bought with for a bad intermittent onboard NIC port. Which is needed since it is the only onboard LAN port available on this board. It made me a little upset since I had to take a part my newly built fully water cooled ITX gaming box just to swap the motherboard.

Overall Review: This board is a great board.... once everything is up an working. However if you are building a Water cooled build with this board.... do yourself a favor, do extended testing outside the case before installation. It seems an intermittent on-board LAN is a known issue. Make sure you test for it.

Revisiting the review

GIGABYTE G1 Gaming G1.Sniper 3 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Extended ATX Intel Motherboard
GIGABYTE G1 Gaming G1.Sniper 3 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Extended ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Still Love it. Running 3 way GTX 680 SLI with 3D Surround. No issues. Running well with my i7 3770K @ 4.8 Ghz Stable "Still going strong!" Never had issues with updating the BIOS..... or how stable the BIOS is. Has all the features of board 200$ dollars more expensive and works just as well.

Cons: None!

Overall Review: The person saying this board will not do 4 way SLI or 3 way SLI is wrong. The bad news is he must of just got a faulty board. This happens..... with every manufacturer.....it doesn't mean that this board is a bad board. It just means that one out of how many hundred they have sold is bad. People giving a product bad reviews because they are forced to pay return shipping is also not accurate. You have to remember that this is a bad economy and every retailer and manufacturer is going to do everything they can to keep prices down for everyone else. If I had to buy this product over.... I still would. So would the four other people I have built gaming systems for that also have no problems.

Good but not another Sandy Bridge

Intel Core i7-3770K - Core i7 3rd Gen Ivy Bridge Quad-Core 3.5GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Intel HD Graphics 4000 Desktop Processor - BX80637I73770K
Intel Core i7-3770K - Core i7 3rd Gen Ivy Bridge Quad-Core 3.5GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Intel HD Graphics 4000 Desktop Processor - BX80637I73770K

Pros: Very low power usage Very fast (Faster then Sandybridge) True PCIe 3.0 Onboard GPU is x2 power as SB @ stock runs cool Tri-gate tech Unlocked Core to x63 (capable of hitting 7Ghz with extreme cooling) overclocks to 4.4/4.5 without voltage raise (Running 24/7 @ 4.6 with 1.18 volts) Even though you can not overclock it as far on air as sandy bridge. Because of the performance increase... 4.5 Ghz on Ivy Bridge is about = to 4.9/5.0 on Sandy Bridge. Able to buy over lockers insurance from Intel

Cons: Runs warm because of the type of thermal paste Intel used between the Heat spreader and Die. (When overclocking) Temps can reach over 90c on air. Because of this will not reach the same clocks as SB unless on Water or extreme cooling. Just like sandy bridge water cooling does have an effect on the temps but not as much as you would hope for. Example.... when I pushed this CPU to 5 Ghz my temps were still @ 82c Full load stress test. (Although gaming I never saw above 51c hottest core) Because of these high temps and the die shrink it still remains to be seen how long this CPU can run without dying or degradation. Can not handle higher voltage for longer periods of time like it's Sandy Bridge cousin. Where Sandy Bridge was able to handle 1.5v to achieve 5.2 Ghz.... if you did the same to Ivy bridge you would almost surely have a dead CPU in about two weeks.

Overall Review: It's a great CPU. But with it's short falls it makes one think???? Did Intel purposely knocked down this CPU to avoid another performance diabolical like with Sandy Bridge vs X58 CPU's. Where everyone stopped buying their enthusiast chip because the performance of the mainstream chip was so good? I doubt it ... but it's still a thought. If you plan on overclocking this CPU make sure you stay below 1.35v for long term use. It has been mentioned many places that anything above that voltage could cause degradation really quickly. Lastly.... if you are on Sandy Bridge right now and want to upgrade to Ivy bridge. I would personally wait for Haswell. But if you decide not to and go for it anyway.... you will still be getting a great CPU. Intel i7 3770K @ 4.6 Gigabyte Sniper 3 Z77 G.skill 8Gb 1866Mhz 2 x EVGA GTX 680 SLI Water cooled Intel X25 SSD 80GB RAID 0 Western Digital 500GB black Caviar Raid 0 XFX Pro 1050Watt PSU

Had Both the HD 7970 and the GTX 680 ... the verdict is???

EVGA GeForce GTX 680 2GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 SLI Support Video Card 02G-P4-2680-KR
EVGA GeForce GTX 680 2GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 SLI Support Video Card 02G-P4-2680-KR

Pros: I have owned both the GTX 680's in SLI and the HD 7970's in Crossfire. Pros: 1. Generally faster then the HD7970 Single card vs single card (Review Other thoughts) 2. Generally faster then the HD7970 SLI vs Crossfire (Review Other thoughts) 3. When in stock clocks and using boost technology generally cooler then the HD7970 (Review Other thoughts) 4. While the Boost clock is labeled at 1056 for these cards something Nvidia doesn't tell you is, each card may have a higher boost clock then what is listed on the box. If the card is under Nvidia's approved thermal specs and the card needs the extra power. The GTX 680 will continue to clock up by 13Mhz. So the boost clock labeled @ 1056 is just a guaranteed lowest boost clock depending on the quality of your chip. 5. The Base and Boost throttling saves more power then the HD7970's 0 Power clocks. 6. GTX 680 SLI is able to play any game out there at the moment. 7. Low fan noise

Cons: Cons: 1. When overclocking because of the Offset style of overclocking and Nvidia's hard coded thermal cap, if you have a 1300Mhz overclock and it reaches 72c your card will down clock to decrease heat. (There is no way to shut this off) This means your 1300mhz overclock is not at a true 1300mhz the whole time. While benching it could also be at 1124Mhz or something else for periods of time. 2. Power Target was created to fix the above problem.... although it does not always keep it at a steady clock. 3. Fan speed of only 85% max currently. Sure you can adjust that if you know how but you will break your warranty. 4. No Stock! Come on Nvidia you are loosing out on a lot of money.

Overall Review: The Comments I made in the "PROs" section about generally faster then the HD7970. It's true! While this card is faster.... it is not really that much faster. First off you won't really notice the increase. Next The cards really do trade punches with each other at everything. The biggest plus side to the GTX 680 cards over the HD 7970's I would say is the drivers. If AMD could create some stable good drivers I think the results would be in the other direction. Stock for stock my GTX 680's beat my HD7970's every time. But overclock for overclock it was a different story. In the end if you own a GTX 680 don't go for a HD7970 and if you own a HD 7970 don't go with a GTX 680. It's not worth the money from each direction. These cards are to close. Unless you just wanna play with both like me.... then it's all for fun.