Date Joined: 10/23/08
Pros: -MLC Nand (3-5x as durable as TLC)
-Performance that rivals Samsung's new 850 Pro lineup
-Works with SanDisk SSD Dashboard to monitor the drive's life, writes, performance and even temperature
-Also comes with free drive cloning software making transferring your OS a breeze.
-10 year warranty!!!
Cons: Not a thing!
Overall Review: I caught this drive on sale for a ridiculously good price and it has been flawless. Very happy with the purchase!
Pros: This card is silent. Dead silent. The Twin Frozr cooler is total overkill for a low wattage card like this, but that just means the fans can keep temps in check at ultra low RPMs.
Even at max load the fans never really ramp up, so it's just as quiet at load as it is at idle, and temps never get any higher than the low-mid 50s.
Also this one doesn't require an external 6-pin PCIE power connector, meaning it can fit in virtually any build with a 300W PSU.
Cons: It's big. Almost as big as my 780 Ti, which may be an issue in smaller cases.
The stock clocks don't quite match the listed specs here. Mine was clocked at 1058MHz out of the box and required running MSI's Gaming App in "OC Mode" to get reach the advertised speeds. Not a big deal, especially if you're going to manually OC it anyway, but it's an extra step that just feels unnecessary.
Overall Review: I'm a long time buyer of MSI cards. Their Twin Frozr cards have always been top notch, and this is another excellent addition.
The 750 Ti itself is a great budget option for 1080p gaming, and can handle most games at "high" settings with a few concessions here and there (like using post processing AA instead of MSAA, etc). All in all, I'm very happy with the purchase.
Pros: Several people have mentioned how quiet this card is, but I feel like it really cannot be overstated. With its stock fan profile, this card is essentially silent, even under 100% load. It's really quite amazing, even with my ear less than a foot away from the card I can't pick it out over the ambient room noise!
As a long time MSI customer, MSI's Twin Frozr 4 has made some dramatic improvements over Twin Frozr 2 and even 3. The dual 100mm fans keep this Ti much cooler than the reference models with seemingly none of the noise. I've been running mine on a test bench and it's yet to even break 70c.
Also worth noting is the factory OC on this card is quite high. In "OC mode" mine boosts to 1150 core right out of the box, making it one of the fastest Ti models available.
Cons: Price. But GPU prices have been inflated across the board this generation, and relative to other 780 Tis, this one is actually very competitively positioned.
Overall Review: I really can't say enough good things about this card. It's insanely fast, power efficient and backed by MSI's very reliable 3 year warranty.
With its factory OC, it even outperforms the older dual gpu cards (GTX 690, HD 7990) in several titles. And manages to do so while staying inaudible.
The people at MSI have outdone themselves with this one!
Pros: This card is an absolute monster. So far this card has shredded everything I've thrown at it in 1440p. Including Crysis 3! With a tiny overclock it surpasses even stock Titan performance at 2/3 of the cost!
The cooler is built like a tank. It feels incredibly sturdy, and is by far the quietest reference shroud I've ever seen. Even with the fan turned up to ~70% the motor is inaudible.
Best of all PNY is the only manufacturer offering lifetime warranties on their GTX cards for FREE. That was a huge selling point for me, because honestly, if I'm dropping over 600 bucks of a graphic card, a good warranty is pretty important.
Cons: Price tag is still a little steep, but this and the Titan are in a league of their own for the moment and the top cards always come at a premium.
The packaging is pretty bare bones, but for some that might be a pro. It came with a quick install manual, driver CD and DVI to VGA adapter, which is fine by me. I don't need a bunch of case stickers and posters I'll never use anyway.
Overall Review: This is the first PNY card I've bought and so far I'm extremely pleased. I bought mine off site, and got a pretty great deal, but even without it, it's hard to top PNY's warranty.
Great card and great to see a manufacturer really stand by their product.
Pros: I use silicone mounts wherever I can to eliminate vibrations between my fans and my case, but regular rubber screws won't work for mounting fans to a rad. These are the next best thing!
I was using 'silent' fans in push/pull on a 120mm rad but was still getting some audible vibrating. With one nexus absorber between each fan and the radiator and one more between the rear fan and the case that's no longer a problem.
Plus they're super easy to install.
Cons: A little expensive all things considered, but can you really put a price on silence?
Overall Review: My PC is now whisper quiet, just the gentle 'woosh' of moving air. Great product!
Pros: I love these fans. Their stylish (neutral) black/white design matches virtually any build. They have very high static pressure for a "silent" fan, which makes them great intakes through fan filters.
PWM controls makes it easy to adjust their speed directly from your mobo. No "PWM ticking" or motor noise on 5v.
And, they come with soft silicone mounts to eliminate case vibration.
The 3 year warranty is just icing on the cake (and out of the 20 or so various Gelid fans I've owned/installed I've never had one die on me).
Cons: The soft mounts aren't particularly intuitive, and the fans don't ship with instructions on how to install them. Gelid does have a guide on their website though, so no points off there.
They can be a bit of a hassle at first, but a toothpick or a small phillips head screwdriver can help guide them into place.
Overall Review: Gelid has been my go to brand for quiet computing for years now and they continue to impress.
Although the mounts may be a hassle, they're absolutely worth installing. I've tried both screws and the mounts and they make the difference between these fans being "quiet" and virtually inaudible.
Pros: I love these fans. Their stylish (neutral) black/white design matches virtually any build. They have very high static pressure for a "silent" fan.
PWM controls makes it easy to adjust their speed directly from your mobo. And, they come with soft silicon mounts to eliminate case vibration.
The 3 year warranty is just icing on the cake (and out of the 20 or so various Gelid fans I've owned/installed I've never had one die on me).
Cons: The mounts aren't particularly intuitive and there are no instructions included. Gelid does have a guide on their website though, so no points off there.
Installing them can be a bit of a hassle at first. A toothpick, or a small philips head screwdriver can help guide them through the fan/case's openings though.
It's worth noting the included mounts are NOT compatible with radiators though.
Overall Review: Gelid has been my go-to brand for quiet computing for a few years now. I currently have two of these on my H80 and they perform swimmingly.
I tried the Corsair SP120 Quiet editions before switching to these and I won't be going back. Gelid's Silent 12s have higher static pressure, and keep my 3770K 3-4c cooler while staying just as quiet. Considering their price, these are a steal.
Pros: I wrote below that I would update my review after my RMA went through and I'm pleased to report my replacement has been absolutely flawless. No backlight bleeding, no bright or dark spots and no dust underneath the glass. 3686400 pixels, and every single one of them is perfect!
Many thanks to Newegg's eggcellent customer service! They took my flawed panel back and exchanged it hassle-free. They even shipped my new one out via next day air on top of it all, absolutely free. I really couldn't be happier!
The factory calibration offers very accurate reproduction of the sRGB color space right out of the box, with perfect gamma correction. I haven't even found a need to mess with Natural Color Expert (the bundled software package that gives access to the hardware LUT).
Colors are precise and vivid, contrast is sharp and the viewing angles are fantastic!
Cons: As others have mentioned, this monitor is a bit lacking in ergonomics. The stand offers height adjustment and tilt, but doesn't pivot or swivel and the USB hub only features 2.0 ports. I knew that going in though so no eggs off there.
Overall Review: While the features mentioned above would be nice given the price point, to me, they'd really just be the icing on the cake. Far from deal-breakers. The star of the show is this amazing panel, which shines in all its glory through the glossy tempered glass panel.
The reflective screen could be a problem if you work in areas with uncontrolled ambient lighting, but if not, there's no matching the clarity of high-end gloss panels like this and the Apple Cinemas.
Unlike the Apples though, this monitor also features a 16-bit LUT for even more precise hardware calibration if your needs demand the absolute highest color fidelity.
Pros: This thing scored 10s across the board in performance at JonnyGuru and it's easy to see why. Near perfect voltage regulation, excellent ripple and noise suppression and over 90% efficiency from 10 to 100% load!
Best of all it does all of this while remaining completely silent. In hybrid mode, mine has stayed fanless even when pulling in excess of 400W from the wall. Even after hours of gaming or rendering it stays cool in passive mode.
It's fully modular so you can buy aftermarket sleeved cables if you want... but with stock cables this sleek, why would you? They're all black (even the individual cables in the 24 pin are black from end to end) and flat, making routing a breeze and letting them blend in perfectly with almost any build. And it comes with four 6+2 pin PCIE cables which makes it perfect for dual GPU setups (like mine!).
Cons: Price. But you absolutely get what you pay for.
Overall Review: With this PSU you get clean power, ultra high efficiency and quiet operation (in a pretty darn stylish package if I do say so myself).
It's powering my 3770K, 16GB RAM and SLI GTX 670s without a problem. Put it in your cart already!
Pros: 80+ Gold efficiency and all the connectors you'd ever need for 2-way SLI/CFX configurations in a sleek 650w package.
For those wondering, Newegg is indeed shipping units based on the new KM3 platform which Hardware Secrets raved about. They match Seasonic's Platiunum lineup in just about everything (ripple, noise, voltage regulation etc) except efficiency. And even that is pretty darn close. This is one of the best performing PSUs, ever.
And on top of it all, it is dead silent! I leave mine in hybrid mode (fanless while the PC is idling) and I honestly couldn't tell you if my fan has ever spun up because... I've never heard it, even while gaming or rendering.
Cons: The regular price tag is pretty steep for a 650 watt unit. I caught it on sale for a fantastic price, but it's a tougher sell at it's usual listing.
Still, it's not hard to argue it's worth it either way. With a 7 year warranty you're definitely getting your money's worth.
Overall Review: The flat, black cables are a very nice touch. They look great and are a cinch to route. My build looks so much cleaner without the bulky, rounded cables from my old 750w unit this replaced.
It's enough to comfortably power my:
- i7 3770K
-Two GTX 560 Ti in SLI
-Multiple HDDS and high-powered case fans
...with room to spare. What more can you ask for?
Pros: It's not listed here, but per GELID's website, these fans have a static pressure rating of 2.66 mm H2O. That's actually even higher than Noctua's acclaimed NF-F12s.
I've had two of these running on my Corsair H80 for over a year and they match the stock fans performance with less than 1/2 of the noise.
Plus the white LEDs create a soft green glow through the spinning blades. It's a really slick visual effect.
Cons: At max RPM they get a little loud, but with their PWN controls that's not really a con. You can adjust their performance to whatever noise/cooling level you prefer.
Overall Review: A year later and these fans are no worse for wear, running almost 24/7. They're worth every penny.
Pros: Replacing my old Shin-Etsu with PK-1 dropped my temps ~2-3c across all 4 cores on my 3770k.
And compared to when I used Antec's Formula 5, my temps dropped a whopping 6-9c on load!!!
Overall Review: The 5g syringe is huge. One tube will go a long way.
Absolutely love it!
Pros: This is an amazing kit for the price. 16GB of low-voltage, DDR3 RAM factory-tested at 2133MHz for under $100? Sign me up!
I bought this kit for my 1155 build and it has worked flawlessly. All four DIMMs ran at their rated specs without a hitch, and they're ridiculously fast.
Out of the box, my kit scored: 22.5 GB/s Copy, 23 GB/s Read and 19 GB/s Write in Maxxmem2, along with a 7.9 in Windows 7's WEI. Stock.
The heat-spreaders are sleek and stylish without looking gaudy, and the black PCB helps them mesh with almost any color scheme. They're also low profile, so there shouldn't be any clearance issues using larger air coolers with them.
And to top it all off they run on only 1.5v, meaning they stay cool and play nicely with the integrated memory controllers on Intel's Sandy and Ivy Bridge processors.
Cons: The timings are a little loose compared to more expensive kits, but that's not really a con if you're on a modern Intel platform. Socket 1155 and 2011 CPUs benefit much, much more from raw speed/bandwidth than low cas latency.
Still, with a stock DRAM voltage of only 1.5v, there's plenty of wiggle room to overvolt them and tighten the timings a bit if you really want.
Overall Review: Even though this kit is guaranteed to run at their listed specs, not all CPUs and motherboards can support 4GB DIMMs at 2133MHz. So definitely check your motherboard's QVL before buying. Even if they are supported, you may have to manually set them up in your BIOS to reach the rated speeds.
My Z68 board recognized them as 1600 c9 by default and wouldn't run them above 1866 c10 using the standard XMP profiles, but manually entering the frequency and timings (2133, 11-11-11-27 2T) worked like a charm.
This is my first time using Patriot in a high end build and I couldn't be happier. This kit performs in league with RAM that costs 2-3x the price, and looks good while doing it.
They've definitely won me over.
Pros: I bought this as a storage drive for my system (my OS is on a separate SSD) and so far it has performed flawlessly.
It was instantly recognized in Windows 7, and after initializing and GPT partitioning it, it was good to go.
With 3x 1TB platters, this drive has less points of failure than other 3TB solutions, meaning it should be more reliable in the long run! And if you're filling a drive with 3TB of data, reliability is kind of important.
Cons: She chirps! At random intervals (not just when sleeping/waking) the drive will make a little chirping noise. It's pretty well documented around the web, so search "Seagate chirp" for more info.
It doesn't really bother me, but it is loud enough to notice when I'm not wearing my closed headphones. Aside from that though the drive is actually quieter than my old Samsung F3.
It seems to be a bit of a dice roll, some chirp others don't. If you're looking for a 100% silent build, you may want to look elsewhere.
1 year warranty. I knew this going in, so I can't really complain, but it would engender a lot more confidence in the product to see the manufacturer stand behind it. 3 years seems to be the industry standard on HDDs these days.
Overall Review: For the price I really can't think of a better option. This is by far the cheapest 3TB drive available, and also one of the fastest, but comes with the shortest warranty.
On the bright side, I guess it highlights the importance of backing up your data!
So far, I'm very satisfied with the purchase.
Pros: I had been eying this drive for a while and finally caught it on sale elsewhere. Thus far, I couldn't be happier.
This is one of the fastest Sandforce drives on the market. Windows 7 installed in ~7 minutes and a fresh ATTO run topped out at 560MB/s read and 530MB/s write (well above the rated specs) with firmware 5.0.1.
Since installing it, it's been running almost 24/7 without a hiccup. It seems all the kinks with Sandforce have long since been worked out.
Cons: Firmware 5.0.1 had an issue which disabled TRIM's functionality. However Kingston's website already has the updated 5.0.3 firmware posted which corrects this.
I was able to flash my drive painlessly from within windows using Kingston's free SSD tool. The update is non-destructive, so you don't even lose data on the drive.
All in all a very smooth process that took less than 30 seconds, so no egg deductions for that.
Overall Review: I'm in love with this little drive. It has enough space for my OS along with my entire Steam library, Adobe CS6 suite and a few other miscellaneous apps, and still has room to spare.
Not to mention it just plain looks slick. Kudos to the Kingston design team!
If your drive comes shipped with 5.0.1 it is definitely recommended that you update your firmware asap.
Pros: Aesthetically speaking, the bezel is very minimalist and sleek. All of the cable attachments in the rear are at a 90 degree angle to the panel itself, making the setup even easier.
The screen is uniform and the colors are very vibrant. No stuck/dead pixels to report.
Out of the box it's one of the best looking TN panels I've seen.
Cons: The reflective plastic on the bezel attracts fingerprints very easily so be prepared to do a bit of cleaning.
The speakers are pretty poor, but for the price I can't complain too much.
Overall Review: It's a great HD monitor for basic computing/web browsing etc (which is what I bought it for).
Gamers/media enthusiasts will probably want to look elsewhere, and really should be paying for a real set of speakers or headphones anyway.
Pros: The biggest pro: 2GB of VRAM!
This card is perfect for gaming at HD+ resolutions. Even at 1080p, games are becoming more and more memory intensive (I'm looking at you BF3!), so why limit yourself to a 1GB card?
In SLI they're unstoppable. I own two and they run everything I can throw at them in ultra high resolutions (2560x1600).
Besides gaming though, the extra memory also makes them a budget-minded alternative to the Quadro/Tesla lineup for CAD work. I've been able to use them in AutoDesk Inventor without a hiccup.
The 2nd biggest pro: The Twin Frozr cooler! These cards are whisper quiet, even with the fans cranked up, and they run very cool. Even after hours of gaming, my top card hasn't gone over 65c.
But best of all, this version of the TF2 cooler features an added flex brace to prevent the PCB from bending and mosfet contacts to keep your VRMs cool, unlike the EVGA and Palit models. MSI really covered all the bases with this card!
Cons: It's a little pricey at this stage of the game, but you do get what you pay for. It's a shame MSI didn't release it sooner!
Overall Review: If you're considering a 560, I would say this is easily the card to get. The 560 Ti is a workhorse, and with a 2GB of GDDR5, you won't be limited by your frame buffer. Add to that one of the best air coolers available and you have a truly excellent card. I couldn't be happier.
Pros: I wrote a review earlier mentioning the instability problems with my original V3. But, after RMA, I'm pleased to report I've gone for over a month and a half with zero blue screens, lock ups or any other problems with my new drive. It benches over spec (560 read/510 write in ATTO) and runs flawlessly!
I'm using firmware 2.02 and sticking with it, since 2.06-2.09 seem to have introduced even more performance issues.
If it ain't broke, I'm not fixing it!
Cons: Still kind of pricey, but understandable for the level of performance you get.
Overall Review: I see a few people still posting about stability issues so I suppose it's still a bit of a dice roll, but OCZ has been working pretty hard to resolve things.
Their forums have plenty of info on tweaks with the drive and windows itself to maximize your performance, and their staff has been quite helpful.
Originally, I was feeling a bit wary of OCZ, but now I can honestly say I would buy from them again without reservation.
This is the best 120GB SSD on the market today.
Pros: It's FREE! Batteries included. Read the instructions for setting it up (takes all of 30 seconds) and it worked right out of the box.
Overall Review: Thanks for the gift, Newegg!
Pros: Gorgeous matte black design.
On board video, with HDMI, DVI and VGA outputs, giving you plenty of connectivity, and meaning you can make use of Virtu and Intel Quick Sync if you choose.
2 way SLI & X-fire support.
The onboard audio is surprisingly rich. I don't feel the need to install a discrete sound card at all.
Everything is clearly labeled so you don't really even need the manual when setting everything up.
Cons: Gigabyte uses legacy BIOS, which is a bit disappointing considering UEFIs are steadily becoming the norm. But, that is kind of offset by their TouchBIOS (which you can download from Giga's website) which gives you full access to BIOS tweaking from within Windows.
The front panel audio header is placed in a really awkward position, just above the PCI slots near the rear IO.
Unfortunately, that means it takes some fairly creative routing (and possibly an extension cable) to connect to it, and with a high powered gpu installed in the top PCIEx16 slot there is fairly significant static interference when running 3D apps.
A word of advice, try to avoid running your front panel cables parallel to any active power cables. It should help reduce some of the interference, but IDK if there's any way to eliminate it completely with the positioning on this board.
Overall Review: For the price, you'll be hard pressed to find a much better value in the Z68 lineup. It has all the bases covered when it comes to features, and holds up well against much more expensive competing boards.
Pros: Easy to install with plenty of connection headers for whatever you want to connect.
Rear USB 3.0 ports. Multiple internal USB 2.0 headers. 2 system fan headers, and 6 SATA ports with 2 using SATA 3 interfaces.
You get all the connectivity of its big brothers in a compact build for small cases and HTPCs.
Also the on-board sound quality is surprisingly rich.
Cons: No UEFI. No internal USB 3.0 header (though no micro-atx mobos have this yet afaik).
Also, it emits several very loud beeps on start up, but this is apparently normal. Nothing worth take an egg away for.
Overall Review: I've owned 3 MSI boards to date and been very pleased with all of them. I'm certain this won't be my last!
Pros: Hyperthreading! On a dual core like this, Hyperthreading really shines. You're getting very close to quad core performance for a fraction of the price.
Out of the box this thing benches on par with my old OC'd Q6600-G0!
Outside of synthetic benchmark results, I really can't tell much difference between this and my i7 in my other rig. I haven't found a game yet that this little, stock chip can't handle.
Overall Review: All the Sandy Bridge chips have fantastic price/performance ratios. You can't really go wrong with any of them.
Pros: Full modularity at a very competitive price! The cables are all sleeved and clearly labeled for easy installation, and you're given plenty for all the connections a 500w supply would ever need.
It fit in my Silverstone ML03B perfectly!
The fan is almost completely silent. This is honestly the quietest PSU I've ever owned.
Cons: None so far.
Overall Review: I wish there were more modular options in the low wattage market. I used this in a recent HTPC build and it is fantastic, but still a bit overkill for my power needs.
Still, I'd rather have the extra PSU power than have to deal with a ton of unused cables cluttering my case.
Pros: This monitor has quite a few features for an IPS screen at this price point. HDMI in, audio out, and a standard array of calibration options.
Also, the display panel itself is very slim and sleek.
Cons: Color fidelity out of the box was poorer than I expected, though thorough calibration did help.
The one thing that couldn't be fixed was the horrible backlight bleeding this monitor suffers. On a fully black screen, nearly 1/2 of the real estate is taken up with massive blotches extending from all four corners.
There is tilt, but no pivot or swivel, and the viewing angles seemed fairly narrow compared to other IPS screens.
The base feels very flimsy, and the stand is made out of a very tacky looking neon orange plastic.
Overall Review: For the price, I can't say I really expected a premium quality panel. I also own two Dell Ultrasharps, which completely eclipse this monitor in quality, clarity, color reproduction and functionality. In comparison, this screen leaves a lot to be desired.
It's certainly not something to be used for any kind of serious design work. But, it is still a step up from a standard TN panel, and given the price point, that seems to be what LG was aiming for.
If you just want an IPS for casual use and don't want to break the bank, this is a decent option. For any kind of color critical work, look elsewhere.
Pros: 2GB of VRAM! If you're looking at this card, that should be your biggest concern. 560s are very powerful cards even with their stock/reference design, but they're limited at HD+ resolutions by the 1GB frame buffer.
This is the ONLY 560 model that eliminates the VRAM bottleneck. I bought two for SLI and with their 2GB of VRAM, I am able to game comfortably at 2560x1440 with AA/AF and DX11 goodies maxed in every title I own!
If you're looking for a setup to power a high res 27-30 inch monitor, or you want to play in nVidia surround, this is a fantastic choice.
Cons: The Palit cooler leaves something to be desired. The stock fan profile is a little lax, and my temps were climbing into the 70s at stock settings. Using a custom fan profile brought my temps down substantially (over 10c), however the fans do get very loud at over 50%.
Overall Review: This is a really great card. I wish the reference design came with 2GB, but luckily Palit is looking out for high res gamers with this and the 3GB 580!
It's also worth noting, that these cards are quite compact. Smaller than any other 560s I've seen. So they should fit in almost any case with plenty of room to spare.