Joined on 06/21/05
Perfectly serviceable, but not premier.
Pros: * Small and light. * Easy to upgrade. * Runs the games that I like to play without issue * Doesn't seem to generate much heat, but I have a cooler anyway.
Cons: * Windows 11 (I don't like change very much, and I haven't encountered any significant improvement in the OS for my purposes. Many of the simple things have actually been made harder and more convoluted, buried in menus that require multiple clicks, whereas Win 10 at least made most of my common stuff into a 2 click process.) * Red backlight instead of something adjustable. * MSI bloatware is not my favorite.
Overall Review: I bought some upgrades along with the laptop: a 1TB SATA SSD and 16GB of RAM. The upgrades took maybe 15 minutes to get installed before first boot, and everything took off immediately without issue. Windows 11 "game optimization and integration" is fantastically useless for me because I run Steam games, so XBox integration and GamePass do nothing for me since the majority of the interesting games require EA membership. Who doesn't need another useless launcher between you and your games? So far, It has played Cyberpunk 2077 and Horizon Dawn quite handily at high settings. I dig it. I do have a desktop machine hooked up to my powerhouse displays where I do most of my gaming, but this gives me the chance to game on the run when I want to do so. I managed my expectations, and so far I'm thrilled with what I've got
Update to earlier review
Pros: All of the pros from my previous review still apply
Cons: Same here, up to and including the fact that after hours of dinking around with that useless Win8 OS, I finally wiped and did a clean install of Win7, which seemed to have cleared up all of my issues except the one below. Now for the new "con" in the list. The Atheros wireless adapter is absolute freaking garbage. If you are more than 5 feet from a WAP, you cannot stay connected. My card has d/ced three times while writing this addendum to my review (and I'm sitting in a room watching Netflix on my desktop rig, and it has 5 bars and streaming without lag; laptop only has 2 bars). As may be inferred, I did my research and installed appropriate drivers for my OS, but still no dice. Still a great laptop, really responsive, played TEOS Beta just fine (sitting 5' from the WAP the whole time) and does all of my accounting coursework with ease. Just that pesky piece of junk wireless adapter that sours the relationship a bit.
Overall Review: I'd still go for it as long as you intend to use it close to your WAP, or have a thoroughly pervasive wireless infrastructure like a school or such, or hard wire it to your router...oh...looky there, d/ced again before completing the review update. The warning is complete.
Rosewill RNX-N180UBEv3 - Wireless High Gain N300 Wi-Fi Adapter
Pros: - It's USB so it'll plug into any PC - Nice color - Excellent reception with the antenna
Cons: - Did not play well with Windows 10. Tried using the supplied drivers, the Windows recommended drivers, and Realtek drivers for the specific chip used in the device; all to no avail. The device would not stay connected for more than 5 minutes while the PC was active, and the device would never wake from sleep.
Overall Review: Ultimately downgraded to Windows 7 (which I had planned to do anyway) and now the wireless functionality works well. I generally like Rosewill products, and I own more than a few devices purchased here at the Egg, but this one does not thrill me, and if I weren't already a Rosewill consumer this would definitely put me off purchasing more of their products. My problems were solved through due diligence, but your mileage may vary. This will get me through my current living conditions that mandate a wireless connection to the internet, then it will become a last resort backup buried in my PC junk drawer.
Logitech M525 Wireless Mouse
Pros: - Logitech - Good size for portability - Unifying receiver for multiple devices like a keyboard at an office desk. - Switch to turn off the laser when not in use. Like every other Logitech device that I've ever owned, all I did was plug it in and go...and go...and go! The green laser seems to consume less power, or maybe because of the switch; either way, I have used the mouse every single day since the end of August and it is now halfway through November on one set of batteries.
Cons: There wasn't a half-off discount for customer appreciation or Logitech loyalty.
Overall Review: It always works, and that's a common trait for every Logitech device I've ever owned.
Cooler Master NotePal
Pros: - Lightweight - USB passthrough/port extender - Really cools my laptop
Cons: - Lightweight The unit is very flimsy, and does not lend itself well to being picked up along with the laptop using a one-handed grip. That kind of grip applies a torque to the unit that makes the fan blades drag in the plastic base housing, creating a delightful grinding noise. - USB passthrough/port extender The good thing is that it has a passthrough/port extender, but the bad part is that it extends outward from the USB slot by about an 1 1/2", and that's without having another USB device plugged into it which extends that distance even more. Bottom line: the darn thing sticks out so far that it can and inevitably does, get caught on clothing or bedding or anything that it comes near. I have to be extremely careful and aware of this thing, because it sticks out so far I'm afraid it will catch on something and not only break the plug for the cooler, but jack up the USB slot that I have it plugged into. The passthrough/port extender is a necessity, but it could have been designed to a lower profile without increasing costs insanely. Minus one egg for the port extender; the lightweight construction is crucial and necessary, even if it sacrifices structural support.
Overall Review: Pudding cups should be twice as big as they are now.
Lumia 910 Windows Phone
Pros: - Indestructible Nokia - Decent battery life - Pretty stable OS
Cons: - Windows OS: Tried to give it a shot, but frankly does not compete with Android for smartphone systems. It really is not as usable or as friendly and definitely nowhere near as customizable as Android. - The battery is integrated and inaccessible so if it goes kaput, so is the phone.
Overall Review: It is a very attractive phone, but not terribly useful. I purchased it as an emergency replacement, but it really doesn't work well enough for me to consider it a permanent replacement. As soon as I can, I'm gonna be ditching this junk and getting a decent Android phone. The suck part is that I won't even be able to convince another sucker to buy this phone for more than a quarter.