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Ian S.

Ian S.

Joined on 02/04/07

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 16
Most Favorable Review

Bang for your Buck.

ASUS P5N-E SLI LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 650i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard
ASUS P5N-E SLI LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 650i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Great board. Simple works, has nice features and will last a while yet. This is the newest piece of hardware in an older system, but truly removed all the old bottlenecks I had experienced. I love where the IDE/ATAPI cables attach, this helps airflow.

Cons: I have 2, neither is major. 1st- The 4 pin power connection on the motherboard made running cables a little weird, and brings wires right up next to my heat sink. In a tower case this 4 pin would be located under your power supply, near the peripheral connections. 2- My second con deals with the CPU socket, I found its location really close to my power supply as well, and this may make the installation of larger non-stock heat sinks impossible or difficult.

Overall Review: Now neither of my cons should keep anyone from purchasing this board, so long as they've done homework on their space and heat sink. All in all a great board.

11/25/2007
Most Critical Review

Not Ready for Prime Time

ASUS M3A78-T AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
ASUS M3A78-T AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard

Pros: Fast and cool. Had all right features at the right price. Ran nicely when it did in fact work. Onboard video.

Cons: Two failures, First within hours of installation, 2nd (RMA from newegg) failed within two weeks. I thought my components were to blame, but the same configuration works perfectly fine within my old m2n32-sli-deluxe.

Overall Review: I've purchased nothing but Asus motherboards for 5 years, all told over 30. Sadly this will be my last Asus purchase. Customer support was unhelpful and at times rude. I spoke to more than 5 people (two level one techs, one level two and two people in the RMA department), all had a lack luster approach and took a decidedly corporate stand. 'We're Sorry...There's nothing we can do for you, rules are rules.' Something has changed at Asus, both in the manufacturing process and in their customer support.

Great First Impression

MSI X470 GAMING M7 AC AM4 AMD X470 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 ATX AMD Motherboard
MSI X470 GAMING M7 AC AM4 AMD X470 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 ATX AMD Motherboard

Pros: Works as expected. Bios has plenty of features and was simple enough to navigate. Memory is currently running at rated XMP values despite not being on the QVL list. I have no tried overclocking, as I have the stock cooler from my 2700x installed, but might try that if/when I upgrade the cooler. The built in wifi was a nice to have feature; When downloading games from steam I managed 30-40MB/s from a floor away from the router. I have sent switched over to the ethernet which also appears to be working fine.

Cons: Nothing major. The layout of a few things was a minor inconvenience: Sata ports will be hard to reach if you install a larger graphics card above them. The Power/Restart/HDD headers are midway along the bottom of the board, which was a little harder for me to cleanly route cables to, and they are sandwiched between your front panel USB headers. This might not be an issue with a different case, but I chose a Fractal Design R6, and had to reroute the shorter front panel cables carefully to get a clean look without too much tension.

Overall Review: I installed Windows 7, which Microsoft does not support on the AM4 platform. This required patching the USB drivers into the installer; luckily there are some easy guides to follow out there. After the patched install, everything went smoothly with one exception: I still have an issue with windows reporting a 'USB Controller' as lacking a driver, however of the ports I have used, so far everything seams to be working. I do plan to contact MSI support and see if that can help me, because the drivers listed on the website don't match the device according to windows (and yet I can still use my USB devices).

Great home for a small NAS

Thermaltake Suppressor F51 E-ATX Mid Tower Tt LCS Certified Gaming Silent Computer Case CA-1E1-00M1NN-00
Thermaltake Suppressor F51 E-ATX Mid Tower Tt LCS Certified Gaming Silent Computer Case CA-1E1-00M1NN-00

Pros: Asthetically pleasing, subtle power/HDD LEDs Decent airflow with some level of filtering. Lots of Hard Drive bays. Easy to manage cables within, creating a clean looking layout was extremely easy.

Cons: Nothing critical here. -Case was a bit bigger than I thought, but thats on me for not reading the described dimensions. -Fan controller molex connectors are a bit cheap feeling. I've had this issue with many different cases and brands; I find that the included/built in connectors come with slightly bent or loose pins and wear out if your often changing/reattaching fans.

Overall Review: Using this case for a home NAS/Media/Web Server/Sync box - The two big selling factors were the HDD bays, and simple looks. For the price, I'm pleased. I only have two drives within at the moment, and I'm using the stock fans. I'm not sure how loud things will get through vibration as I add components and things settle into place.

Nice!

AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition - Phenom II X4 Deneb Quad-Core 3.0 GHz Socket AM2+ 125W Processor - HDZ940XCGIBOX
AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition - Phenom II X4 Deneb Quad-Core 3.0 GHz Socket AM2+ 125W Processor - HDZ940XCGIBOX

Pros: Its a quadcore on the Cheap. Awesome power/price ratio, definitely beats out a comparable Intel setup. Runs cool with stock HS/F and Thermal compound* and is backwards compatible with older MOBOS. My first quadcore. Noticeable difference between this and the 6000+ I had previously

Cons: I can't think of any. Slightly slower than the i7's?

Overall Review: For the moment I have it running in an M2N32-Sli Deluxe, with bios update it runs fine, but warmer than it did in a newer board. I had this proc in an M3A78-T but the board died within 3 days, I'm in the RMA processes. *In the M3A78-T with stock thermal compound and HS/F my cores ran 20*C idle, 30-40*C Load In my older M2N32-SLI with Artic Silver 5, applied per the online directions, the proc runs at 40*C idle, 48*C load. My assumption was that I used too much grease, but after several re-applications (with smaller and smaller amounts of AS-5) the numbers haven't changed. I'm going to assume I either messed up my airflow, or the M2N32 generates more heat. The NB and SB might be to blame as they do feel warmer than those on the M3A78.

Happy in MA #2

XIGMATEK MC NRP-MC651 650 W ATX12V Ver.2.2 / EPS12V Ver. 2.92 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
XIGMATEK MC NRP-MC651 650 W ATX12V Ver.2.2 / EPS12V Ver. 2.92 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

Pros: This is an update to my review on 6/14/2008. Several months later and Im still really happy, I'm still getting the performance I want and need even with some minor system upgrades. Reliability is my main concern with PCs, if it inst stable and reliably whats the point? Your only looking for headaches if you 'know' something isn't right but ignore it.

Cons: None really. -Maybe the stiffness of the cables, they can be hard to bend into tight turns, in my case I had 3 HDDs stacked in the bay one on top of the other and the SATA power was a pain to bend into shape, minor and fixable (hairdryer) but worth noting I guess.

Overall Review: Upgraded to an ATI 4850 and I still have room to expand. I'm considering going quad core with AMD Phenom and doing xfire, currently I have the one GPU and a 6000. This power supply is running the aforementioned CPU/GPU, 4x1gig DDR2 800mem, 4 case fans 3HDDs 2DVDRWs and a partridge in a pear tree- 1xFDD ;-)