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Erik A.

Erik A.

Joined on 05/21/06

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 4
Most Favorable Review
Intel X540T2 Ethernet Converged Network Adapter 100Mbps/1Gbps/10Gbps PCI Express 2.1 x8 2 x RJ45
Intel X540T2 Ethernet Converged Network Adapter 100Mbps/1Gbps/10Gbps PCI Express 2.1 x8 2 x RJ45

Pros: Does exactly what it is supposed to. Setup was as easy as any other networking card, except ten times the speed! We put one of these on our server, and on our video editing workstation. We have a Netgear 10gbe XS708E switch between them. They are all connected through shielded CAT7. In a realistic day-to-day use, it's usually around 300 to 500 MBps. In some specific scenarios (large ISO files, etc) it goes to over 700MBps. This easily maxes out the SSD on the workstation! We no longer have to copy video files locally at our studio, instead they can remain on the server. It was very easy to set up link aggregation. I managed a peak of roughly 1.8GBps transfers to the server in specific scenarios, like setting up a ramdrive, running ATTO, etc.

Cons: Kinda pricy, but being able to stream our huge Nuke and AE composites from the server without lag has more than paid for itself.

Overall Review: The NIC worked great and as expected. But full 10gbe switches are still expensive and LOUD. Not recommended for home use unless you can avoid using the current range of 10gb switches.

10/27/2013
Most Critical Review
Adaptec 2274400-R 71605Single PCI-Express 3.0 x8 Low Profile Ready SATA / SAS RAID Controller Card
Adaptec 2274400-R 71605Single PCI-Express 3.0 x8 Low Profile Ready SATA / SAS RAID Controller Card

Pros: When you can get it working, it works really well. I managed to set up a 10 drive raid 5, alongside a three drive raid 0, and the speeds were as expected.

Cons: While I did not have the slow raid 5 performance mentioned in the other review, I did have several other problems. The main problem was that their maxview storage software is absolute junk. That's what you use to configure and monitor the raid and format drives from the OS. It would only let me connect maybe 1 out of 6 tries, and I could never figure out what the pattern was for getting it working. Most of the time I had to uninstall and reinstall just to check the status of my raid, and that wouldn't always work either! This was on windows server. My only other option was to shut down the server and boot into the cards bios to check the raid, which obviously is not an option... unless you want a lot of angry employees. After a week of fidgeting, I finally got it running good. I can't seem to get maxview to connect to it anymore, but it's been running smoothly for a few months now. I am fearful of the day that a drive fails, because who knows if I'll ever be able to log back in and fix it! Also, the default settings for some of the raid modes are quite odd, and you really should be very very careful about going through the options even after using the wizard. I guess the whole point of my experience is I can not trust anything this card does. I went in expecting it to take some elbow grease, being an advanced raid card, but this thing needs more work.

10/27/2013

Does what it says, loudly

NETGEAR ProSAFE 8-Port 10-Gigabit Plus Switch (XS708E) - Lifetime Warranty
NETGEAR ProSAFE 8-Port 10-Gigabit Plus Switch (XS708E) - Lifetime Warranty

Pros: Does exactly what it is supposed to do. I connected a couple workstations up to it using CAT7 cables (Coboc) and Intel X540-T2 network adapters. We were able to max out the performance of the workstations' SSD's at about 550MBps. Using ramdrives as tests, we managed a fairly consistent 1GB per second between machines on the network. This is all achieved using a simple windows workgroup. It's about as easy as using a regular ethernet network, just ten times as fast!

Cons: VERY LOUD! I will stress this again, this switch is VERY VERY LOUD. It is unbelievable that Netgear markets this to small businesses, because it is louder than any other piece of equipment in our small 12u rack combined. The only reason I haven't returned the switch yet is because there is no other option for 10gbe within our price range. When a quieter 10gb switch comes alone, I will be getting rid of this thing without hesitation! My only other option is to void my warranty and use a custom fan setup.

Overall Review: It supports static link aggregation, but not dynamic LACP. This doesn't affect me because we don't need aggregation, but be warned that for LACP you will need to jump up to the 12 port model. But I hear that ones loud too!

Terrible

SilverStone Zeus ST52F 520 W EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply
SilverStone Zeus ST52F 520 W EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply

Pros: I wouldn't know, read below.

Cons: I ordered one of these to power my Opteron system. It looked like a good deal, had the 24 and 8 pin power connectors, enough wattage, plenty of sata and drive connections. Well, the first one I got was completely mis-manufactured. The cables themselves were only about 6 inches long, making all of them completely useless. The power cables wouldnt even reach the motherboard! The drive connections and sata cables only got about 1.3 the way to the front of the case :| . Not only that, it only had ONE of the 6pin sli connectors, and NO 8 PIN CONNECTOR!!! Normally this isn't that big of a deal. Get an RMA replacement for a manufacturing defect. So I did. Guess what, I got another one that had the identical problems the other did!!! I will never buy another silverstone product. Ever. They are selling power supplies that are mis manufactured, and claiming they pass quality control, as stated by the stickers on the thing. Grrrrr