Date Joined: 04/18/06
Pros: Came out of the box looking new! Not a scratch, really! 1GHz dual core processor that's really speedy. Wifi range is better than my old Netgear R6250 and faster too. It came loaded with an older firmware but was able to quickly upgrade the firmware to the latest with ease. For my needs, don't need DD-WRT or other third party firmware and this fits the bill as is. AiProtection works as advertised.
Cons: Although AiProtection works as advertised, it slows down my it throughput speeds. My download speeds from Xfinity using a wired client on the lan port went from 230mbs to 160mbs. If I turn off AiPortection, the speeds return back to normal. 160mbs is still pretty good but not what I am paying for. Doesn't hurt the ping so games play as usual. Upon investigating this further, AiProtection maxes out one of the processor cores to 100% while the second core is idle. Interestingly, this only happens when speedtesting IPV6 and not IPV4. Perhaps this is a firmware issue, I really don't know. Since the usefulness of AiProtection outweigh the slowdown in download speeds, I will keep it turned on.
Overall Review: After about 3 weeks of use so far, zero issues other than what I mentioned in "con". Never needed to be rebooted, never dropped wifi connection. Only time will tell it's longevity.
Pros: Bought this PS back in Jan 2010 and it's still going strong! Not one misstep. It has outlasted several systems. It didn't kill the systems, the systems got old and obsolete so they got upgraded. Currently, it's powering an "old" system made of quad core Phenom II with AMD 7770HD video card, 6 gig DDR2 RAM, SSD and a 1TB 7200RPM HD on a ASUS MB. I don't know the combined power draw of all of these components but this power supply doesn't break a sweat. Get's slightly warm after hours of heavy computer use and gaming. Dust has collected on the air intake grill and on the fan but what do you expect? It's 7 years old!!
Cons: Didn't come with the 120V wall outlet power cord but if you are like me and have been tinkering with electronics for decades, I'm sure you have multiple power cords laying around in a box in the closet. Not taking an egg off for that. Just glad it didn't add to my "junk" pile. After 7 years of use, dust had collected on the intake grill and fan. Too bad it's not self cleaning, if there is such a thing.
Overall Review: I wish all the computer parts and electronics I have bought over the years were as dependable and reliable as this power supply.
Pros: Got it paired with A8 7600. Works wells. Bios is nice and user friendly. It's got enough SATA ports and other connectivity for a budget build. Not planning to overclock (A8 7600 wasn't meant for it anyways) so can't comment on that. Recognized my G.Skill Sniper 1866 ram and is running it at full speed after changing the memory setting in the bios by enabling XMP profile. It's suppose to have good audio circuit but can't comment on that since I am using the HDMI port for both video and audio. The on chip graphics on the A8 is plenty fast for it's intended purpose, which is general office stuff, internet surfing and light gaming like Minecraft that my kids like to play. Feels very responsive running Windows 7 off a 240GB SSD, boots to desktop in 20 seconds. Hard to get a better FM2+ board for this price.
Cons: Would be nice if it had a DVI port instead of the analog VGA port. Again, I'm using the HDMI port so it really wasn't a con for me but may be for some.
Overall Review: System setup:
This board $40
AMD APU A8 7600 $80
8GB (2x4GB) G.Skill Sniper 1866 $35
240GB SSD by Silicon Powers $65
Corsair 430W power supply $20
Repurposed old HP computer case $0
Repurposed old HP wireless keyboard and mouse (came with said case) $0
25" 1080P TV with HDMI port bought on Craigslist $80
6ft HDMI cable, $5 on Amazon
Not a bad system for a total cost $325.
Pros: Router came in a generic white box as expected since it is refurbished. Not DOA. Unit looks brand new as I couldn't find any blemishes. All the lights work and powered on as soon as I plugged it in. Exact same unit as RT-AC66U except the label on the bottom says AC66R. However, on the same label on another spot, it says AC66U. Quick internet search clearly states that AC66U and AC66R are the same unit but one is sold thru retail outlets (R) and the (U) version is sold through internet vendors. Although at this point, the distinction is moot. With a promo code Newegg had a couple of weeks ago, got it for significantly less than a Benjamin.
Cons: Shipping firmware was an older version numbered 18.104.22.168.374.5517. I immediately upgraded to the latest firmware 22.214.171.124.376.3754. (What's with the crazy version numbers??) That's when the "fun" started. See other thoughts below for what I mean by "fun".
Overall Review: After the firmware was upgraded to the latest version, I set the unit into Access Point mode since all I needed out of this unit was the highly rated radios, as tested by the good folks at SmallNetBuilder. With the latest firmware, the highest link rate I can get was 130mb/s with a throughput of about 40mb/s. This was in both the 2.4Ghz band and the 5Ghz band using my new MacBook Air that has 802.11AC capabilities and standing 2 feet away from it. I reset the router pushing the reset button on the back, changed wireless channels, change wireless mode, enable and disable WPA2 security and still no love. It's stuck at 130mb/s link rate. At this point, I'm thinking that 2 of the 3 data streams are dead and I'm getting single stream connection. Perhaps that's why this unit is refurbished. Two of the 3 radios are dead! So I thought. Then as a last ditch effort before I pack it up and ship it back for an exchange, I thought to try an older version of the firmware. I read on some forum that firmware version 126.96.36.199.376.3602 breaks the 5Ghz band so went even older with version 188.8.131.52.376.2524 dated 9/9/14. Then magically, all is well. My MacBook Air links up at 867mb/s (limit of my MacBook Air since it can only receive 2 streams of AC signal at 433mb/s per stream) and on N protocol on the 2.4Ghz band links up at 300mb/s (again only 2 streams of N at 150mb/s per stream). Throughput is somewhere north of 200mb/s on AC and 80-90mb/s on 2.4Ghz N protocol, which the best you can really hope for on wireless N. Range is also excellent but more importantly, at a significant signal attenuation, speeds are still around 60mb/s, plenty fast streaming the most demanding content like blu-ray.
So, in all, I'm keeping it and not messing with the firmware again. I can't really comment on the other functions of the router since I am only using it as an access point.
For my main router at the other end of the house, I'm using a Netgear R6250, which has an upgraded Broadcom BCM4708X cpu vs this Asus' Broadcom BCM4706 cpu. Also, the Netgear has a much more robust parental control feature that uses OpenDNS, something this ASUS lacks. With 2 school age kids in the house, having a robust parental control is very important to me.
Pros: Initially worked
Cons: After less than 1 week of use, it is experiencing random crashes and video driver crashes. After removing all video card driver and installing a fresh copy of the lastes driver from AMD, the random crashing remains. When I put my old Radeon HD 5450 card back, the crashes stop. Obviously, it's this video card that is causing the crashes.
Pros: Works flawlessly. What else can I say about it. Comes with headphone and batteries.
Cons: The quick start guide mentions nothing about resetting both the unit and the controller. Initially, I thought the controller was dead. The unit has obviously been used before. It has some minor scuff on it but doesn't hurt the function.
Overall Review: When I first hooked it up, Roku started up right away. However, it would not respond to the controller. At first, I thought the battery in the controller, the ones that it came with, was dead. I changed it to a know set of fresh batteries and no go. Apparently, there is a little reset button inside the battery compartment just below the battery. This is not mentioned anywhere in the quick start guide. When I pushed it for at least 3 seconds, Roku put up a screen saying "syncing . . " and then everything started to work. Obviously, the controller and Roku communicates in both directions, not just controller to Roku. After syncing, all is well.
Pros: Very inexpensive after the rebate. It's got rave reviews from www.hardwaresecrets.com, johnnyguru.com. Active PFC, clean stable power, nearly silent temp controlled fan, able to deliver the stated wattage, unlike some other cheap stuff which just flat out lies about it's capabilities. Has all the protection circuitry so it won't kill your components or burn itself out, again unlike some other cheap PSU that just blow up if you get even close to the stated wattage. Has a PCIE that perfect for a single mid level graphics card. If you need more, you need a more powerful power supply.
Cons: Not fully modular but unless you don't need the motherboard and the CPU power connector (really, who doesn't), it's not a problem. It's usually all the extra peripheral connectors that are just hanging in the breeze in non-modular PSU, not the motherboard connector or the CPU connector.
Overall Review: I bought this to power an older Phenom x4 machine with 8GB ram made by HP. The original OEM PSU started to get flaky and the computer would sometimes turn on and sometimes not. I switched out the PSU to this unit and the flakiness was solved. Also, the computer got a lot quieter. I didn't realize that the fan noises were mostly from the OEM PSU. Now, I can hardly hear my machine. The single exhaust fan and the CPU fan is barely audible. Since this PSU comes with a PCIE connector, I thought what the heck, I'll just upgrade the graphics as well. So I got a Radeon 7770 by ASUS from a local store that were blowing them out. Now my computer is quieter and faster than ever before. The single 12V rail makes it all happen without problems. You don't have to worry about which rail is powering what and wondering if you over loaded a particular rail. If you are building a high end gaming rig with SLI or Crossfire, look elsewhere that has much more power. This is for a budget build or an office machine. Here's a list of all the parts this PSU is powering:
Phenom X4 9550
8GB DDR2 800 ram
ASUS Radeon 7770 1GB video card
OCZ Vertex II 90GB SSD
Samsung 1TB HHD
Internal flash card reader
Internal wifi-N dual band card
Pros: Nearly silent fan. I always test new power supplies by shorting the green wire to the ground wire and because it was so quiet, I thought it was DOA. But it was working just fine and surprised how quiet it was. The plugs supplied is adequate and appropriate for a power supply in this range. After all, it's only 300W. You are not going to power a high end gaming rig with this and it was not meant to.
Cons: No power cord but I knew that. It's OEM as listed, peeeooople. No minus egg for that. The main power cord and the 4 pin CPU cord is a little short. Works well for top mounted cases but watch out for lower mounted cases. If you have a lower mounted case, look elsewhere and save yourself the headache.
Overall Review: Bought this to power a new build for my brother in law. He needed a fast computer for office work for his business. It's strictly an office machine with some video/youtube and netflix streaming. This is powering:
AMD A8 APU with on chip Radeon HD 7650 video
MSI FM2 board
OCZ Agility 3 SSD 60GB (OS and all apps)
WD HD (mechanical for file storage)
All is working well and this power supply is more than adequate for this setup. Whole system is very quite, and plenty fast. Perfect for an office environment.
Pros: It powers my file server and has been on solid for over 3 years without one hiccup. Clean stable power, verified by Hardware Secrets and it shows. Worth every penny.
Overall Review: Over 3 years ago, I've built a 10TB file server using five 2TB Hitachi 7200RPM drives and only recently upgraded my primary drive to a SSD. This thing has been on solid since the build. It also powers a RAID card and a DVDRW drive and doesn't miss a beat. Great stable power supply. In that time, none of my components have died, showing that this power supply clean power doesn't harm anything, even under load. Just last month, I've upgraded the CPU/mobo to AMD A10 and MSI FM2 board with 8GB of 1866 DDR3 ram. Again, no problems! Here is my system now:
Antec 300 case
This power supply
MSI FM2 board
8GB DDR3 1866 G.Skill Sniper ram
5x Hitachi 2TB 7200 RPM drives connected to
RAID 5 controller card
Kinston HyperX 120GB SSD
Pioneer DVDRW drive
3 x 120mm fans
2 x 200mm fans that came with the case
Pros: Wasn't DOA. Came unformatted and with an older firmware. So needed to update the firmware using the OCZ utility. It's 90GB, which formats to 83.7GB. Seems like a new drive because the SMART data showed very little power up time.
Cons: Wasn't as fast as I thought it would be. I'm using this on an older AM2+ board that has nVidia SATA 2 controller and I'm getting less than 200MB/s read and write speeds. I thought it would be solidly in the mid 200's for both read and write. I got disk caching, indexing and page filing all turned off and still can't get it to benchmark above 200MB/s.
Overall Review: Got this on sale for $50 on sale so really can't complain about the price. Fit into my desktop without adapters because of it's 3.5" form factor size. That's a good thing. Formatted quickly and installed a fresh copy of Win7 and now my older Phenom quad core machine feels new again. Even though it benchmarks slower than I expected, the drive is still plenty fast, especially compared to the old mechanical drive. Well worth the money. Only time will tell how long this will last.
Pros: Greatly sped up my late 2006 MacBook Pro. Switching out the hard drive was a major pain but that is the issue with the MacBook, not this drive. Runs cool and quiet. I used to get the spinning color wheel often but now, I rarely see it. My old MacBook feels new again.
Pros: Best solution to HTPC I've found so far. It's silent (no fan), enough horsepower for 3D Blu-Ray, HDMI handshakes perfectly and is fully HDCP compliant. Doesn't even complain when I turn off my TV and receiver, unlike the ATI cards. The ATI video would drop the audio over HDMI when the TV was off and require a visit the the sound control panel to reselect the HDMI as the audio OUT. This card maintains audio out even when the TV and the receiver is off. I'm getting 7.1 audio via HDMI.
Cons: Large heatsink and covers the slot next to the PCI-E slot but I knew that before buying. No fan = large heatsink. Not really a con but buyer beware.
Overall Review: Prior to purchasing this, I was having trouble getting my AMD A8 chip with built in 7600 series video to work properly as a HTPC. The problem was that the video circuitry would not properly perform a HDMI handshake, which resulted in live TV to not work under Windows 7 Media Center. After much fustration and multiple tries with different driver combination, took the plunge to get this discreet nVidia based card. I am not disappointed. The POST displays now properly via HDMI, Win7 MC now displays live TV and everything correctly on the first try. the nVidia control panel shows the HDCP status, which the ATI CCC never did. For all my future HTPC needs, I'm getting nVidia graphics card, period.
Pros: Has everything you need to build a quality HTPC that plays 3D Blu-ray and runs Win7 Media Center well.
Cons: Default memory speed was incorrect for the installed memory. But was easily set to the correct speed in the OC bios.
Overall Review: I needed to upgrade my aging HTPC due to difficulty playing 3D Blu-rays and slow sorting of my movie library in Windows Media Center (WMC). My new system specs:
G.Skill sniper series 8GB 1866
Crucial M4 128GB SSD
I'm getting WEI 7.3 processor, 7.4 memory, 6.8/6.8 graphics and 7.9 hard disc performance.
Plays anything I throw at it including 3D blu-rays! It streams video and 7.1 audio via the HDMI port flawlessly. I didn't even bother installing the audio driver for the built in Realtek audio chip on the MB so the audio ports on the back doesn't work, but who cares! I'm getting 7.1 audio via HDMI! Also, WMC works much better now. It sorts all my movies in my movies library much faster than before and feels much more responsive than my old system. Overall, very happy with this setup for HTPC.
Not a gamer so really can't comment on that.
Pros: Does better than expected. Great CPU and GPU speed. A real value.
Overall Review: Placed this in a MSI FM2-A75 series MB with 8GB of G.Skill sniper series 1866 RAM. Also using a Crucial M4 128GB SSD. It boots up Win7 ultimate in 20 seconds and runs Media Center extremely well. I can play a 3D Bluray without a hitch. Also got a Hauppauge HVR-2250 dual tuner card. Has no issues recording one HD channel in the background while watching another channel in the foreground. Couldn't be happier.
Pros: Very fast and stable for the money! Runs at the rated speed without problems.
Overall Review: Bought this on the Black Friday sale with free shipping. Installed it on a MSI FM2-A75 series MB with A8 5600K. WOW! The MB at default ran it at 1600 but was easily able to set it at 1866 without any stability problems. Haven't tried OC but for me stability is more important than a little extra speed and didn't want to spend time experimenting. Got 7.4 on Windows Experience. Would definitely buy again.
Pros: Works well with Win7 32bit running on an old P4 2.8GHz HP machine (yes, Win7 32bit runs just fine on P4 2.8GHz with 1GB of ram). Had to download the Win7 driver from Rosewill website but I would have done that anyway since I typically don't trust the drivers that are shipped with on a CD (probably an older version). I just install the driver, skipped the RALink utility that comes with the driver and Win7 recognized it immediately and was able to connect to my WiFi in no time using built in Win7 utilities. Signal strength is very good, is able to pull in WiFi signal in my house where it was previously a dead spot. Now I get 2 bars, which is way better than 0 bars I was getting before on other machines at this far corner of my house. The free standing antenna in comparison to the other cards with antenna attached to the back of your rig helps greatly with signal strength. Overall a good, cheap b/g adapter. We'll see how long it will last.
Cons: Will only work with PCI 2.2 versions only. Check your system specs before ordering. Luckily, my circa 2004 HP P4 machine has PCI 2.2.
Overall Review: I don't know what the problem is with people saying that it doesn't work with Win7 32bit. Just download the Win7 driver from Rosewill website, INSTALL the driver, and it works on the first try without hassle.
Pros: This is an update to my previous review. Replacement board works well after the first one died after 2minutes. Got is up and running without any issues. Set up a RAID5 using the onboard nVidia chipset and nVidia software and it works but the performance is below expectation. Read speed is great at over 100MB/s. However, write speed is dismal. Read below on the cons
Athlon 64 x2 2.6GHz
2x 1GB DDR2 800 RAM in dual channel
nVidia GeForce 210 discreet graphics, hybrid SLI not enabled
1x WD 320GB HD for system
5x Hitachi 2TB HD in RAID5 array
OCZ ModXStream Pro 500W power supply
Antec Three Hundred case
Cons: RAID5 writes at 15MB/s with large files and even worse with small files, like a bunch of pictures. It seems to be calculating parity or finishing calculating the parity long after the write has finished. You can hear the HD busy for a long time after the write has finished. During this process, additional writes to the RAID5 array is pathetically slow, in the neighborhood of 5MB/s. In all fairness, I don't think it's XFX fault. I think it's the capabilities of the nVidia nForce 750a chipset. Does the RAID work? Yes. Is the speed such that it's usuable? Maybe to no. If you got gobs of time to write stuff to it, then ok. Once it's on there, read speed is good.
Overall Review: Get a separate RAID controller. I plan to.
Pros: Reads and writes anything I throw at it, using Win7 Ultimate 64bit. Fast, cheap and it works. What more could you want.
Cons: The bottom row of reader slots is installed upside down. Meaning that you have to insert your memory card upside down. Why couldn't they just install the slots right side up??
Pros: Works out of the box with Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit. Windows recognized it and installed the needed driver. The chipset is from Realtek so you can get the driver from Realtek if you like but it works so I didn't mess with it. For this price, it's practically free.
Cons: Wasn't actually free but pretty darn close.
Overall Review: Upgraded my Phenom quad core HP Pavilion Elite desktop. Benchmarked it my with GigE equiped server and transfering files around 90MB/sec.
Pros: First one died after 2 minutes. RMA for a replacement. The replacement board is up and running strong. Great board. Bios is a little strange but this is not for a beginner so I'm OK with it. Onboad video also works well. Gigabit is also very fast. I like the onboad LED.
Cons: First one died after 2 minutes.
Overall Review: I bought this MB mainly for the 750a SLI chipset so I can use the nVidia MediaShield RAID function and set up a fileserver using Win7 Ultimate 64bit. I got 5 2TB harddrive in RAID5 setup and is running strong. Read/write on the array is less than expected but is faster than what my gigabit network could handle so I'm OK with it. Haven't and will not use the SLI since this will be just a file server so the onboard video is plenty fast for that. We'll see how long this boad will last, hopefully for a long time.
Pros: Fast, stable. So far so good. Have 5 of these in RAID5 and working great. Also formatted in GPT, not MBR and shows up as 7.2TB in the array.
Cons: Perhaps a little louder than other "green" drives but this is in a closet so noise is not an issue. I needed stable, fast drives that won't drop out of the array.
Overall Review: 5 of these in RAID5 perform very well. I'm using nVidia 750a SLI board and using the onboard RAID function without a hitch.
Pros: First set had a dead stick. RMA it without problems (thanks Newegg). The replacement is working well in dual channel mode. System is nice and stable running Win7 64bit on a ASUS board.
Cons: First set had a dead stick that needed to be RMA, so minus one egg.
Overall Review: Newegg has the best return/RMA policy. Thanks Newegg.
Pros: What can I say. It works, it's quiet and the modular cable design keeps the cable clutter down. I got this powering a XFX nVidia 750a SLI MB with 6 hard drives, 5 of them in RAID5. It's also powering a DVDRW and a grand total of 6 fans. Between the 6 HD and 6 fans, the system is moderately loud but the PS isn't adding to the noise.
Cons: Non that I can think of now.
Overall Review: I mounted this in a Antec Three Hundred case without a problem. However, it needs to be mounted upside down because of the fan location. It wasn't a problem since the case accomodates this PS mounting orientation. The 8 port MB power connector was just long enough to reach the port but that meant that the cord stretched across the MB. Not PS fault but just the way it is due to the MB and the Antec case. I'm just happy it was long enough to reach.
Pros: Powered on for 2 minutes.
Cons: Died after 2 minutes. Then refused to reboot. Tried different power supply, switched out RAM, video card, reset CMOS and still wouldn't reboot. Recertified so I was expecting everything was checked out by XFX to work. Well, it did for 2 minutes. Moved all the components to an old board and everything works so definitely a dead board.
Overall Review: RMA for a replacement. Newegg has hassle free RMA and replacement service. Kudos to Newegg. Seems like a great board and looking forward to the replacement. Will update review when I get the replacement up and running.
Pros: Good for HTPC. Plays Blu-Rays at 1080P without problems. Even get 5.1 audio via HDMI port. It won't do 7.1 uncompressed audio via HDMI but that is the limitation of the chipset, not the fault of ASUS. But that doesn't matter to me since I only have a 5.1 setup anyway. If I need 7.1, then I can run the optical audio cable or I'll just buy a cheap ATI 4350 card then it will even improve the video performance. For me, this machine is strictly for HTPC and generalized web surfing and email, no games.
Cons: Won't do 7.1 audio via HDMI but as stated earlier, limitation of the 785G/710 chipset, not ASUS fault. Will do 7.1 audio via the optical SPDIF port.