Date Joined: 05/24/02
Long battery life.
Tracks on any surface I try it on.
Stays paired, even in an environment that is dense with radio signals.
Overall Review: I have now bought 4 of these. All are flawless. I dropped one 3 feet onto a hardwood floor, and the mouse wheel came loose. A little fiddling with it, and it popped back into place, and the mouse is working flawlessly again.
I live in a very dense area, with lots of wireless signals all around. My other keyboards and mice have trouble pairing and staying paired. But this mouse is flawless.
Update - I have now bought 7 of these mice, and I still like them. Finally, the battery in one wore out after 2+ years of all-day, every-day use. Also I dropped one 3 feet onto a hardwood floor. I thought it was broken as the mouse wheel came loose. But it snapped right back in place, and that mouse is still in daily use.
Pros: - Solid build. No creaking.
- VESA connector for mounting on an arm.
- Not too heavy.
- Sharp display.
- Good color.
- Good brightness.
Cons: - A little small for 4K.
- I have to increase the size of fonts to be able to read them, which defeats the point of 4K.
- Only 3 input connectors.
- Oddly, it won’t auto-detect the active input.
- You have to manually select which input port you are using, and the buttons for making that selection are not very responsive, requiring repeated presses.
- Also odd that there is no Thunderbolt port, or DisplayPort-over-USB-C.
Overall Review: I would recommend this monitor for people with limited space (like me). But if you have more room, get a bigger monitor. Also, if you want to use Thunderbolt, you will have to look elsewhere.
Pros: Charges my laptop, passes thunderbolt video through just fine.
Arrived 5 days earlier than expected!
Overall Review: My ThinkPad laptop does power and thunderbolt video over a single USB-C cable. But the cable from Lenovo is thick and gets in the way. These adapters successfully transmit both power and video signal at the same time.
Pros: - No issues at all.
Cons: - None.
Overall Review: Installed 32GB in my new ThinkPad E495. Due to recent negative reviews, I ran several hours of memory tests before clearing the laptop for service. No issues at all. I have used G.Skill in 2 of my last 3 builds, also without issues. Here is what I like about G.Skill: When I'm doing a build, I can look on the motherboard's QVL list and find a G.Skill part with the capacity, speed, and timings that I want. Then I get the part number and order it on Newegg. With other manufacturers, there is always something missing - I can't get the capacity I want, or the speed is lower, or the most maddening is when the part number doesn't match anything that is currently available. Kudos to G.Skill for making my life easier!
Pros: - Boots instantly. From power off to login prompt is less than 3 seconds.
- The Google apps all work well and look beautiful on the big screen.
- The multi-point touch screen works smoothly. The Photos app is really nice with pinch-to-zoom.
- The IPS display is bright, good color, and very wide viewing angles. No frustrations there.
- Build quality is superb.
- Complete setup took about 10 minutes, including setting up wireless networking, getting all accounts connected, downloading email, and setting up a local printer via USB.
- Chrome running on an i5 with 8GB RAM is really, really fast. No waiting ever. YouTube is smooth, with no stuttering.
- Uses very little power. The power brick is smaller than the one with my laptop.
Cons: - Included keyboard is cheap and mushy.
- Wired mouse also feels really cheap.
- Has an external power brick (though it is really small).
- Most Chrome "apps" are just links to web sites, some look like scams (stick to the Google-provided apps, they are professional and they work).
- Printing is goofy. Instead of trying to add your printer to Google's Cloud Print, and having everything you print go through their servers, just buy a cheap HP USB printer, and install the HP Print app. Setting up HP Print is a little goofy (it keeps wanting to find a network printer, even though you are using USB). But once you get it working, then printing is smooth and reliable. Too bad that Epson and the other printer manufacturers don't have apps like HP.
- No way to change the size of desktop icons (really? that's pretty basic, but Chrome won't do it).
Overall Review: - Bought this for 90-something grandparents, who just need email and web to monitor their retirement investments.
- Not even visiting children can break it.
- They no longer have to pay for a yearly subscription to AV and anti-malware products.
- Before this, they had a Windows all-in-one that took like 10 minutes to boot, and needed constant fixing - seems like it was always getting some virus or malware, no matter what AV product I installed on it.
Pros: Great color. My previous monitor was IPS, but only effectively did 6 bits of color each for RGB. Big difference.
Solid construction. I have it mounted on an Ergotron arm, and the VESA mounting plate is one of the most solid that I have seen.
The monitor casing is solid, no creaking as I move it around.
No dead pixels, no light bleed that I can notice (I'm not an artist, though, so maybe not as sensitive).
I didn't have to adjust anything out of the box.
Includes every cable you could want - tried DisplayPort for the first time, and cable locks in place nicely.
Cons: Nothing that I can think of. My family absolutely loves it. Big improvement over a 1920x1080 monitor.
Overall Review: I didn't know that DisplayPort also carries audio, and the monitor has speakers. The monitor's speakers actually aren't half bad, but I still prefer my big external speakers. Windows 7 made the monitor speakers the default without asking me, and it took a good 30 minutes to figure out how to get my old speakers back.
Pros: Not too big, it really is 10.5 inches long.
Plays all of my kids' Steam games at 2560x1440 with graphics settings at max, no complaints about frame rates or stuttering.
Clocks way down for mundane use like email and web, sticks at 35C with the onboard fans OFF.
Even with the fans all the way up, it's not very loud, and I have not noticed any whine.
Cons: The card BIOS has a fan profile that does not turn the fans on until the temps hit at least 60C.
The included software can set a new fan profile, but the software must be running - if you close the app, the fan profile reverts to the BIOS profile with the fans off.
The software is designed to look cool, but I would prefer if it was simpler, used fewer resources, and ran reliably.
Give me an easy way to load a new fan profile into the card BIOS, so it becomes the default!
Overall Review: I have 2 big case fans blowing right at the card, so I'm ok with the onboard fans remaining off most of the time. The card gets less dusty that way, and the fans won't wear out. Put when gaming, we have to leave the klunky Precision X OC software running, when I would rather devote all of the system's resources to the game.
High durability for a non-enterprise SSD.
Small - easy to get plenty of airflow around the drive.
Quiet - you don't realize how loud hard drives really are until you get used to an SSD.
Cons: Small laptop-sized mounting screws, even though this drive isn't really for laptops. Mounting holes are positioned for a laptop as well. Had to get the drill out to get these mounted in my server.
Overall Review: I put 2 of these in a small workgroup server (an HP ProLiant G7 N54L). I'll let others run the benchmarks - all I know is this server maxes out Gigabit ethernet, and that's without using RAID.
I analyzed our data usage before selecting these drives. The drives have 128TB endurance, so with our typical usage of 20GB/day of writes, they should last 17.5 years.
Pros: Exact same controller as Xbox360.
Wireless USB dongle for PC has long cord (about 5 ft).
Good range (15 ft or more).
Worked perfectly with Titanfall - no setup required.
Cons: Can't turn the controller off. Normally, I would shut a controller off from the XBox menu, but the PC driver provides no control panel or anything. To turn it off, we have to momentarily open the battery compartment.
Overall Review: The instructions don't mention pairing. Just like with the XBox, you have to push the pairing button on both the controller and on the USB dongle to get it to work.
Pros: Solid construction.
Good chipset - it's reliable -no errors on large transfers.
Fairly fast transfer speeds.
Aluminum body makes a good heatsink for the enclosed drive.
Cons: Very bright led light - I have to cover it up with a sticker.
Overall Review: I have bought a lot of these over the years - I use them as TimeMachine backup drives, and I velcro them to the back of the iMac so they're completely out of sight (except for that blue led light!). No power supply necessary - the iMac seems to be able power them no problem (the iMac can provide 7W per firewire port, which seems to be enough).
Pros: Good price for the large capacity.
Handily beats even a 10000 RPM VelociRaptor hard drive for speed.
Cons: I've read that the drive is only rated for 72TB of writes. I guess we'll see how that goes. Actually, I've been paying attention to disk writes now, and we don't write anywhere near as much as I thought - the drive should last longer than the computer it's in.
Overall Review: I store about 15000 digital pictures on the drive, managed by Adobe Lightroom. I used to use a 10000 RPM hard drive for the pictures, and even then it was painfully slow. Now everything in Lightroom is instant. I have the drive paired up with a 3.5 GHz i7, 32GB of 1600Mhz DDR3, and a GeForce GTX 570. The machine boots from a Samsung 840 Pro SSD (which cost as much as the Crucial drive but has only 480GB), and I honestly can't tell the difference in speed between the Crucial and the more expensive Samsung.
Pros: Excellent Build Quality:
The external casing of the Corsair is still made of bent sheet metal, but it is thick and strong. I've had some power supplies where the casing would twist and warp under the stress of getting wedged into a small case, but the Corsair unit is as solid as can be. There is absolutely no danger of stripping a mounting screw with this unit. The modular connectors are firmly mounted and don't wiggle at all when plugging or unplugging cables. Overall, the Corsair gives you a sense of confidence that you just can't break it. Finally, the Corsair is FULLY modular - even the motherboard connections.
Self Test Function:
I really appreciate this feature. With the power supply disconnected, pressing the self-test button will verify the proper functioning of all the rails. There is a single LED that gives you a go/no-go indication, so it isn’t a substitute for a real power supply tester. But if your system won’t power up, it’s a quick and easy way to eliminate the power supply as a possible cause.
Efficiency and Accuracy:
Though it's hardly a scientific test, I wanted to see if this power supply was measurably more accurate or efficient than a more run-of-the-mill power supply. I picked a 700W modular supply from a different vendor for comparison. The other supply is about $100 cheaper than the Corsair, and has only an 80-plus certification (not Platinum). I used a kill-a-watt meter to measure total system power usage in 3 different scenarios. Here is what I found:
80-plus supply Corsair
BIOS setup screen 178W 165W
System Idle 138W 133W
At Load (Crysis 2) 298W 282W
So it seems that the Corsair is at least 5% more efficient than a regular 80-plus supply. If you figure an average savings of 15W, and you use your system 8 hours a day, you could save roughly 44kWh per year. Where I live, electricity costs $0.162/kWh, so the Corsair would save me a little over $7 per year. Well, it’s nice that it’s more efficient, but it would take 14 years to make up the difference in cost based on efficiency alone.
To check accuracy, I connected each power supply to standard power supply tester. I also noted the voltage readings from the BIOS Hardware Monitor screen.
80-plus supply Corsair
BIOS 3.408 3.312
PS tester 3.3 3.2
BIOS 5.16-5.18 5.11
PS tester 4.8-5.2 4.9
BIOS 12.36 12.20
PS tester 12.2 12.0
So it seems that the Corsair supply is a bit more accurate, with less fluctuation.
Cons: Corsair Link feature:
The Corsair includes a special cable for connecting the supply directly to one of the USB headers on your motherboard. With the correct driver and application installed, this is supposed to give you extra information and control over the power supply. Well, in theory anyway. First off, the special cable is inexplicably divided into 2 halves with a giant dongle between them. The dongle serves no purpose that I can tell, other than as another surface to emblazon with the Corsair logo. In a cramped case, it’s an annoyance to find a place to mount this dongle so it’s out of the way. Then there’s the software. I downloaded an install package from Corsair’s website and ran it. It installed a device driver, a Windows Service, and an application, which it offered to run at startup. I was surprised to find that this combination used 20% of my CPU all the time (I have a Phenom II X4 at 3.0 GHz). Even after quitting the app, the Windows Service continued to use an excessive amount of CPU. When I ran the app, it seemed that its purpose was to tell the power usage and temperature of each individual component in my system, and how fast each fan was spinning. It supposedly lets you set up custom fan profiles as well, but I like manual fan controls (little knobs that I can actually twist), so adjusting PWM via software doesn’t work for me. As for monitoring power usage, the software doesn’t work so well. I am sure that my Raptor drives use more than 1W, which is what the software reported (whether the drives were active or idle, always 1W!). I find that the Open Hardware Monitor open source app provides much more information, and it uses only 1% of my CPU (and it doesn’t require a Windows Service). So, I decided to uninstall the Corsair software. But the uninstaller couldn’t deal with its own Windows Service, asking me to stop the service manually and run the uninstaller again. All in all, this feature feels incomplete, and I certainly wouldn’t pay extra to get it. But if it worked well, it would be cool.
I do have one gripe is with the included SATA power cables. It seems to me that the most common build configuration would still be one with a top-mounted power supply, and the optical and hard drives mounted horizontally in a stack, with the top side of each drive facing up. For this configuration, the SATA power connections are upside down! You either have to twist the cable at each drive, or you have to route the cable to the bottom-most drive first, and then go up from there. Given that the cables are so stiff (and there is only 4" between connectors), the twisting option doesn't work. And none of the cables are long enough to reach the bottom drive first. So I ended up having to use a separate SATA cable for each drive, which kind of negates the advantage of a modular power supply. I think that I will end up ordering some SATA power extenders so that I can twist each one independently, and then use only one cable.
Overall Review: A word about the cables:
This unit comes with 2 single-headed and 2 dual-headed PCI-E cables, all about 24" long. That should be enough for most SLI setups. The cables are nicely sheathed and reasonably flexible. They connect to the power supply with a satisfying click, and stay put. Also included are 3 sets of SATA power cables with 4 connectors each. Two of the cables are about 27" long, and the 3rd cable is about 34" long. The spacing between drive connections is the same on all, at 4". The SATA cables are ribbon cables rather than loose wires in a sheath, and they are a bit stiff. Also included is one 30" ribbon cable with 4 Molex connectors, also 4" apart. If you still have floppy drives, 2 adapters are included for that. They also throw in a handy bag of cable ties and double-stick tape. Aside from my gripe with the SATA cables (see Cons, above), the cable assortment is quite nice.
If you're like me, the power supply has always been the biggest pain of every build I've ever done. Wrestling it into place with its thick mass of overly stiff cables, I've uttered more expletives than I care to admit. I had high hopes that the Corsair would be the solution to my problems. It succeeded in some ways, but fell a little short of my expectations in others. Overall, the build quality, convenience, efficiency, and accuracy of this power supply are all fantastic. But is it worth the price premium? If you don’t have to downgrade any other components to afford it, then I would say yes. But if your system build is on a budget, I would rather spend that premium on a larger SSD, a faster CPU, or a better graphics card.
Pros: Runs cool - despite its small size (about the size of a deck of cards), it never gets hot.
Came with a nice padded, compartmentalized bag.
Cons: The cords are a bit stiff.
Overall Review: I bought this unit as a replacement power supply for an Asus UL30Vt laptop. It works perfectly so far. The last time I bought an FSP power supply, it died suddenly after 1 year, so time will tell on this one.
Pros: Has always worked well for me in my Asus UL30Vt laptop. I did a fresh install of Windows 7, and it went super fast. The SanDisk SSD Utilities work well, and made upgrading the firmware easy. I didn't lose any data.
This drive is so fast that even performing a full system backup is painless and quick.
Very inexpensive for an SSD - good value.
Cons: The drive shipped with old firmware that supposedly had a TRIM problem, but I didn't run into it before the fixed firmware was released. I guess time will tell if the drive can maintain its superb performance.
Pros: Pairing was easy.
Haven't used up a set of batteries yet, so I can't say anything about battery life.
The keys have a nice action.
Cons: Power switch is easy to trip by accident.
Overall Review: This keyboard turned my Nexus 7 into a mini software development workstation.
Pros: Works. Fast. Inexpensive.
I have confidence in G.Skill memory the way I used to trust Crucial.
Overall Review: I put this RAM in an Asus UL30Vt laptop. It was only supposed to be able to handle 4GB, but I read in the reviews that other folks had tried 8GB of G.Skill RAM in other UL series laptops with good results, so I took a chance. It works perfectly, and now my 2-year old laptop has 8GB!
Pros: Fast. Small. My staff love them.
Cons: They run hot - too hot to touch after a large transfer.
Pros: Easily runs on USB bus power.
Metal case dissipates heat nicely.
Runs reliably for many hours performing backups.
Cons: Nothing cool or particularly attractive about it - it's a square metal box with a USB port.
Overall Review: Put a 750GB WD drive in it, and I use it for backups. Haven't really tested it for speed, but with a 5400RPM drive, it doesn't matter anyway - I was after low temperatures, not speed, and it works for that.
Pros: Doesn't clog.
The color inks are dull.
Overall Review: I hate that I have to buy the expensive Brother ink. But I bought really cheap 3rd party in on Amaz$n, and it clogged. And the cartridges didn't have much ink in them. I still think the "Use only factory ink" is a scam, but these do work.
Pros: Good sound.
Cons: Battery charge indicator doesn't always work.
Loses pairing - have to frequently re-pair it with my kid's iPod Touch (a real pain).
Overall Review: Bought 2 - both have the same problems.
Pros: Very, very fast.
Seems reliable so far.
Cons: Not the smallest or the prettiest drive, but who cares?
Pros: Replaced a Panasonic 5.8GHz "Gigarange" set with this. Lots of thoughtful improvements:
- Shared phonebook, instead of 1 per handset (yay!),
- Standard AAA NiMH batteries (double yay!),
- Still works during a power outage!
- Big, easy to read display,
- Absolutely tiny power adapter,
- Much reduced power consumption (~40% less),
- No pairing or setup required.
Cons: None so far.
Overall Review: Haven't tested the range yet, but easily works throughout my house, even in "Eco" mode (reduced power output).
Pros: Works well - I have 3 licenses, running on 3 PCs that range from a weak ultraportable to a monster gaming rig. It doesn't bog down any of them.
Coexists nicely with my anti-virus (eset NOD32).
Catches malware and blocks websites that elude both my filtering service (Bluecoat) and NOD32.
Cons: Absolutely none.
Overall Review: The best thing is - you pay for this once - there doesn't seem to be an annual fee like there is with so many competing products.
Pros: Very small. Looks cool.
Gets warm, but not hot.
Good range and pretty good speed.
Extremely easy to setup, even with all my layers of wireless security. Netgear's setup "Wizard" actually works (I usually hate automated setup utilities).
Cons: Throughput is only about 1.5 to 2x that of the 802.11g client that it replaced. That may not be Netgear's fault, however (see below).
Overall Review: The more I work with 802.11n, the more I find that 150Mbps is just a theoretical maximum - real world speeds average 65-100Mbps, even in near ideal conditions. But that's good enough.
Cons: Client mode doesn't work at all. In fact, it does absolutely nothing, even after updating to the latest firmware.
Also, the setup pages do not match those in the manual - key portions were apparently never implemented...
Overall Review: I have lots of experience setting up and maintaining wireless networks. With enough time and tweaking, I can make almost anything work. That's why this unit was so frustrating. I bought it to use in the advertised client mode, to attach a wired device to my wireless network. But the logs on my access point showed no recognizable activity at all. At least it was cheap - too cheap to bother sending it back. I have a number of Asus units that work perfectly in client mode - I should have stuck with those!