Joined on 06/18/02
One of the best in air cooling
Pros: One of the best you can get as far as air cooling heatsinks. I've owned three of these for various builds and have had nothing but positive experiences. This keeps my e6750 @ 3.25Ghz impressively cool at the lowest fan setting. My idle temps stay with 10C of ambient room temperature (My PC is in a basement with an ambient temp of 19-20C and my CPU idles at 26-28C.) Under hours of gaming load (CoD4 and/or Bioshock) the temps never exceed 38C. This is with the included fan controller set to the lowest setting! I can knock a few degrees off of the load temps by setting the fan to a midrange setting and things are still impressively quiet. A great HSF for people who want to achieve some decent overclocking on air cooling. Mounting on 775 and AM2 sockets is secure, with the weight of the unit being supported by front and backing plates.
Cons: Make sure it will fit. It is large. It's also heavy, so take care if you have a PC that will be moved around alot. Even with the secure mounting, this thing will put strain on the motherboard. Installation on 775 can be a little tricky, but nothing that caused me any headaches. Also, things get loud at the maximum fan setting... but if whatever you are doing requires the fan to stay at the maximum, you probably need to go beyond air cooling anyways.
Overall Review: The new Zalman thermal compound appears to work very well. I used it with my e6750 build when I realized I was all out of Artic Silver 5. I am very impressed with the performance. I'm doubting that Artic Silver would offer much of an improvement with this build.... maybe if I really pushed the overclocking further... but I don't have any reason to do that for the forseeable future.
Solid HSF, beware of the weight
Pros: Quiet, inexpensive, impressive cooling performance.
Cons: Weight. This HSF clamps onto the standard mounting bracket on the mobo, which in my case was just plastic. After about seven months of use, the plastic tabs failed and were sheared clean off by the weight of the HSF. All three mounting tabs on the upper half of the bracket were gone, causing the HS to loose contact and my CPU to quickly heat up. Comparing the weight between this unit and the stock AMD cooler will make you realize that this one might be too much for a mobo mount designed for the OEM cooler.
Overall Review: In my original review from March 2006, I mentioned the bracket as a cause of concern. Turns out it wasn't the bracket on the HSF, but the strain it puts on the plastic mobo mount that was the issue. For a couple of extra bucks, I would recommend going with something that has a more secure mount design. A few extra dollars for HSF is nothing compared to a few hundred if you toast a CPU. I'm going to be installing a Zalman that screws into it's own mobo bracket and scrapping this one. In the big picture, it wasn't worth the couple of bucks I saved seven months ago.
A worthy display for gamers
Pros: - Bright backlighting - Sharp picture with good contrast - Higher 144hz refresh is a noticeable improvement for gaming - My example had no dead pixels The only real selling point on this display is the refresh rate. In that regard, it doesn't disappoint. Brought me back to my CRT tube glory days from years past when I could push games to silky smooth rates well past 60fps.
Cons: - Cheap / wobbly base - Noticeable backlight bleed along bottom edge when displaying near / total black - Noticeable backlight fade in the middle of the screen when displaying near / total black - Colors acceptable, but not particularly vibrant - Viewing angle acceptable, but not great The cheap base is expected at this price point, so not a real major complaint there... But I've seen better on other budget models. The backlighting isn't great, but when playing most games with everything whizzing around at 90fps, it's not something that really matters.
Overall Review: This display is what it is, a budget LCD with the higher refresh rate. If you aren't a gamer, this probably doesn't offer much for you. Better overall color / backlight quality can be had at 60hz for the same amount of money. I use a slightly higher-end LCD at my home office that was provided by my employer... and this Acer simply doesn't compare for day-to-day uses. That said, I don't regret the purchase at all... I primarily bought this for gaming and I'm happy with the performance in that area. I deducted one egg as I do think it's a tad overpriced without a sale... there is nothing exceptional here except the bump in refresh. This technology has been around long enough to where I guess I was expecting better overall performance outside of the refresh rate. Although I did get mine for a decent discount on Black Friday, so if you can find it on sale then consider this review a full five eggs.
Great replacement for a dead PSU
Pros: Over the last five years, I've probably purchased/installed 30-35 of these for various clients. I haven't had a single problem. This is a quality replacement for when one of those garbage OEM power supplies in your uncle's eMachine takes a dive.
Cons: I've never had a problem installing this in run of the mill Gateways, Dells, eMachines, etc... but the cable runs are shorter than most enthusiast level power supplies. Look elsewhere if you have larger mid / full tower case.
Overall Review: I try to pick a couple of these up every time there is a good sale. You pay for the quality at full retail price, but this is an excellent value when discounted.
Solid replacement card for dying on board video
Pros: I needed an inexpensive replacement card to run dual displays on my office workstation, the onboard Intel video started acting wonky. For the price, this card is probably hard to beat. Runs cool under office loads, passive heatsink makes no noise, handles dual 1680x1050 just fine, as expected. I have not done any gaming or video encoding and probably never will. This will be for 95% office work. Using supplied half-height backing plates, it was a snug fit, but was installed into my Lenovo SFF workstation without much fuss.
Cons: The VGA output quality is poor. I have run the same setup on both this card and the original onboard video, primary display = DVI, secondary display = VGA. The Intel chipset offered a much better picture quality over the VGA connection, the DVI quality appears about the same. Running the latest ATI Catalyst driver and LCD driver from HP, the VGA picture is still washed out with lacking contrast and dull colors compared to when the same monitor ran over the same VGA cable to the onboard video. Tweaking within the Catalyst controls improves things, but not by much. Minor complaint in the big scheme of things, and for a secondary display that I really only use to read email, the picture is acceptable. I am just slightly disappointed that the overall picture quality was a bit better running integrated graphics.
Overall Review: Not purchased via Newegg, I needed this quickly in a pinch, so I had to source it locally.
No complaints for the money I spent
Pros: Runs everything I have thrown at it without an issue. Even under gaming load, the noise level is virtually nil compared to the last two video cards I've had (HD3870/ HD4980). This is my second XFX card and have never had a problem. Also came with a free Shogun 2 game and a decent rebate.
Cons: No complaints so far.
Overall Review: I was building a midrange gamer for my son from spare parts. Either I needed to upgrade my PC and move my HD4890 to my son, or I needed to find a decent midrange new card for his PC. The best bang for the buck I could find was this card (after rebate and free Shogun 2 of course). So I get a decent upgrade and my son gets a video card with plenty of gaming legs left. Considering what I paid for my last two rounds of video cards, you get some really solid performance from this puppy for under two bills.