Date Joined: 01/27/03
Pros: This one is not defective, and Newegg didn't hassle me when I needed an RMA. The RMA process was fast and easy. This CPU is running at 4.0Ghz, 1.475v, and never passes 46c, even when SMP folding or playing Crysis.
Cons: The first one I received was defective. I couldn't enable C&Q, even at stock settings, without getting bluescreens every time it tried to drop to low power state. OCing was also out of the question, as anything above stock speed caused crashes, and anything over stock volts caused the temp to increase dramatically. It just seemed silly to have a Black Edition CPU that couldn't do any better than stock, and couldn't use power saving features either.
Overall Review: I'm happy with the replacement CPU. It's fast enough, stable, and does what I need it to do. With that said, the price just isn't right for these any more. Intel has faster parts at comparable prices, which also run cooler and more efficiently. AMD needs to get BD to market, or at least drop the prices on their current offerings to stay competitive. There is just no reason to choose an AMD CPU right now.
Pros: sharper and heavier than expected, surprisingly solid construction
Overall Review: It's a knife set. It cuts things.
Pros: works as well as many of the more expensive coolers, comes with a big bundle of accessories/attachment brackets, price can't be beat, keeps my 965 BE in check
Cons: not as pretty as my Xiggy Dark Knight
Overall Review: I installed a couple of Scythe Slipstreams on this, slapped on some MX2, mounted it, and left it alone. Instructions were easy enough to follow, and I love the fact that it came with the brackets to attach a second fan (no more ugly wire ties!).
Pros: very good image quality for the price, solid construction
Cons: It isn't a super high res LED LCD with all the latest inputs, but I knew that going in.
Overall Review: I bought this for my daughter. I decided to be mean and hook it up to my system so I could tell her that I was going to keep it for myself. I was surprised when I fired it up and compared the image quality side-by-side with my 24" Asus...the only differences were the size and resolution. This cheap little Hanns G looks just as good as my "high end" Asus! Needless to say, my daughter loves it.
Pros: good price for retail package (SATA cable, mounting screws, and software included), quieter than the Lite-On, LG, and Asus drives I've used in the past
Overall Review: If you don't need BR burning/reading abilities, this is the drive to get.
Pros: WD Blacks are some of the fastest platter drives on the market.
Cons: This model is noticeably louder than the 32MB cache SATA 2 model I bought a year ago.
Overall Review: This is about as fast as consumer platter drives get. The next step up is SSD, but the cost per GB isn't where it needs to be yet.
Pros: quieter and cooler than reference cooled GTX 570's, Gigabyte quality, price, maxes my games, factory OC
Cons: Modern graphics cards are as big as some of the antique ISA cards I dealt with 12+ years ago. Since a single GTX 570 is powerful enough to max just about every game on the market at 1920x1080, I'm hoping that Nvidia and AMD will focus on shrinking the footprint and lowering the power requirements now.
Overall Review: This card is overkill for most people. I got it because I play games on my PC, and I run Folding@Home while I'm away. This card is good for about 16k-17k PPD at stock settings, and it has the potential for substantial overclocking.
Pros: fast enough, cheap, unlocked multi
Cons: not a 2500k
Overall Review: I bought this because Intel announced the SB chipset recall 3 days before payday. I wanted a 2500k, but didn't want the headache of a guaranteed RMA down the road, so I opted for this CPU as a temporary fill-in. This was a good choice, because now I can move it to my wife's rig once BD or the revised SB chips become available.
I haven't OC'd this CPU yet, but I do plan to once I have the time.
Pros: solid construction, plenty of connections, stable (clean) power, great price for a high quality PSU
Cons: cable sleeving doesn't go end to end, 6 pin PCIe connections are on the same cable
Overall Review: This is by far the best PSU offered on the egg for under 100 bucks. It is more than enough for my current build, and leaves plenty of room for SLI or future upgrades.
AMD Phenom II 965 BE
8GB G.Skill Sniper DDR3-1600
Gigabyte GTX 570
WD Caviar Black 640GB
Pros: Very powerful for a budget CPU. Mine is being used in an office/light gaming build, and it performs flawlessly. Win7 x64 is happy with it. It is also ridiculously power efficient. At stock speed (2.5Ghz) I am running it at 1.0v, and it is 100% stable.
Cons: None. It isn't the fastest CPU on the market by any means, but it is a 5 egg product at this price.
Overall Review: I wanted to build an efficient system for some moderate office work and mid level gaming (source based games mostly). In these tasks, this CPU performs almost as well as my e8400 which is OC'd to 4.0Ghz. I built this system to be power efficient as well, and with a g41m-es2l I am able to power the whole system with a 430 watt PSU with power to spare.
4GB OCZ DDR2-800
WD 160GB HDD
Lite-On DVD Burner
Thermaltake TR2 430 Watt PSU
Pros: Easy to install, decent layout, it wasn't completely dead.
Cons: Can not set FSB speed manually. Changing "CPU Host Clock Control" to enabled results in a failed POST, even when set to the same value as the "disabled" option selects (200Mhz).
Also, it did not initially recognize my CPU (e3300), even though it is listed as compatible. I had to manually set the multiplier to 12.5x. This board was trying to run it at 6x by default.
Overall Review: I got a dud...my first one from Gigabyte. I'm not sure it is worth trying to RMA it since it does work when everything is set to automatic. I was hoping to OC, but that's never a sure thing anyway. I'll give it 3 eggs since it technically does what it's supposed to, even though it isn't fully functional as advertised.
Pros: It's a cheap, 100' Cat6 cable with solid connectors. The shielding works. I get a good signal from end to end.
Cons: It didn't run itself.
Overall Review: not much to say, it does the job
Pros: Quality 5.1 sound for less than 100 bux. While the power ratings and such are almost exactly the same as the x-530's I just retired, the improvements over the older set make them well worth the cost/effort of upgrading. This newer revision adds real faceplates (not cloth), a control pod with power, volume, bass volume, a matrix switch, and a headphone jack, a down firing sub, and a center channel speaker that clips to an LCD screen. I had my center speaker perched on top of my LCD with the 530's too, but the 540's are easier to do this with. Matrix mode is a common feature in many mp3 player apps, but it's nice to have a button for it on the speakers themselves.
Overall Review: While this isn't an earth shaking system, it is more than enough for gaming or multimedia in an average size room. From a sound quality standpoint, these sound almost exactly like the Logitech x-530's, except for the fact that the improved sub design eliminates dead spots. I paired these up with a Xonar DS, and the sound quality is better than most of the competitor's offerings in this price range.
Pros: This cooler is compatible with almost every graphics card on the market, so you'll be able to keep it around for a while. It's also almost silent, even with both rheostats turned all the way up. As for cooling ability, this is about as good as it gets short of water/phase change or some other exotic cooling system.
Cons: I'm not a big fan of the retaining clips they used on the fans. I also don't really like the wire wrap they used, when a true sleeve would have worked and looked better. Other than that, my only real complaint is that the retaining screw diameter is smaller than the holes in my HD4870, so it tends to move from side to side if bumped (only happens when I'm monkeying around in the case, so not much of a problem).
Overall Review: I bought this to replace the cooler on my HD4870 Toxic Edition. While the Toxic cooler is very effective at keeping temps down, it sounds like a hair dryer at anything over 50% fan speed. I was looking for something that provided similar cooling ability without all the noise, and this Scythe cooler definitely delivers.
Pros: They move plenty of air. They are solid, well built fans.
Cons: They're a bit on the loud side, but not as bad as other fans I've used over the years.
Overall Review: If you're looking to build a silent or near silent rig, go with the lower airflow, lower DB version of these. This particular model was built for overclockers, water coolers, and people who generally prefer outstanding cooling abilities over low noise levels. While a fan controller would help keep the volume in check, it's kind of a waste to buy these fans and not use them to their full potential.
Pros: These fans move about twice as much air as the ones that came in my CM 690 case. While not silent, they are much quieter than the 110CFM Slipstreams I also use. The construction is solid, and the LED's are an unusual shade of green (which is what I was hoping for).
Cons: These are not 19DB fans, which is what the packaging claims. They produce an annoying whine, but I'm hoping a better fan controller will be able to line them out.
Overall Review: I'm running 3 of these in a black CM 690 case with the optional side panel window. These fans would be perfect for an "Nvidia" case mod, as the LED color is almost a perfect match for the Nvidia logo. Unfortunately, I run an ATI graphics card and an Intel mobo chipset, so the Nvidia green isn't really appropriate for my case, but I like it anyway.
Pros: I'm a long-time fan of Logitech. I've owned several sets of Logitech speakers, from headphones to 5.1 configs, and I've been happy with them every time. This particular model is perfect to add a little extra punch to a laptop or dorm/bedroom PC. The small size makes it easy to set up, and the control pod keeps everything nice and convenient. While you won't be rattling windows with this system, it is plenty loud enough for watching movies or listening to mp3's.
Cons: There's really not much to complain about when you are getting a quality 2.1 speaker system for the cost of a set of headphones. I have noticed that when using foobar to play mp3's, you have to turn the bass down quite a bit in the equalizer to avoid drowning out the highs, but it is easy enough to tweak the settings.
Overall Review: I bought this set to go on my wife's desk. She uses a laptop and she needed something a little better than the built-in lappy speakers for watching online videos for her college courses. She also likes to listen to mp3's while doing homework, and watching the occasional dvd or streaming movie. This speaker system is exactly what she needed, and it doesn't bury her desk in unnecessary speakers and cables. While it is smaller than I expected, it still provides decent sound. According to my wife, it isn't a sub woofer, it's a sub puppy.
Pros: Where to start? It's bright...maybe too bright if you're used to lower quality LCD's. The 23" screen size is almost overkill. The base, while not perfect, is plenty big enough to keep this beast upright. The vertical viewing angle is about average, but the horizontal is much better than any other LCD in this price range. The 2ms response and 1080p resolution make this screen perfect for gaming with all the eye candy cranked. It came with all the cables I needed to connect it to my PC (some other brands only ship with a VGA cable, but this one comes with a good DVI cable). It was packaged securely, and mine has 0 dead/stuck pixels (always makes me nervous when ordering LCD's online).
Cons: I'm not a big fan of the high gloss housing, and I could have done without the built-in speakers, but these aren't enough to warrant knocking off an egg. Due to the unusual shape of the housing, it's difficult to get my x-540 center channel speaker or cheap clip-on webcam to sit securely. The base of this screen does not have a height adjustment feature. These are all minor complaints just to fill in space.
Overall Review: Asus and I have a hit and miss record. They usually have high quality products, but they occasionally send me a lemon. I was torn between this LCD and a competitor's model with similar features/price, and ultimately decided on this one mostly because my wife wanted an Asus LCD as well. I'm happy with my decision. This is a beautiful LCD at a very competitive price, and it would be a welcome addition to any gaming/home theater configuration. It holds its own against the big boys in features and quality, while still remaining firmly in the budget gamer price range.
Pros: The paint is fairly high quality. There is enough room for an average system as long as you don't use a large GPU. The stealth optical drive bays work well and are a nice touch. Overall the case is nice looking. It came with plenty of screws, mobo standoffs, etc. The temp readout on the front panel does its job, and saves me the hassle of adding a 5.25" temp sensor to the front panel. It was packaged securely, with plenty of protective plastic over the plexiglass.
Cons: The metal used in the side panels is very thin. I've seriously seen better case construction with a $25 bargain bin model. The case I received has several dents in it, which were apparently there before it was ever packaged, as the box and packing materials showed no signs of damage.
Overall Review: While this is an attractive case, I get the feeling that I paid more for the flashy blue paint than any quality construction. It's good enough, and my daughter is happy with it, so I'll keep it around. It's annoying that I could have bought a case for half the price and ended up with the same build quality, but such is life.
Pros: It works. It's SATA so I don't have a huge IDE cable blocking airflow. The price is comparable to most IDE models.
Cons: In my CM 690 case, this thing sounds like a jet engine.
The "retail" box did not include any cables or screws (I paid extra for the retail package specifically to get the SATA cable).
Overall Review: If you need a cheap SATA burner, this one is worth picking up. It is far from the best I have ever used, but it isn't the worst either and the price is right.
Pros: It's fast. It's very, very fast. One of the fastest platter drives on the market. I know the Vista Experience Index is pretty useless, but this drive, in a non-RAID config, scores 5.9.
It's also quiet. I replaced a 160 gig WD drive with this one, and I was amazed at the lack of spin up/grinding noise.
32MB cache, dual processor, 5 year warranty, what's not to love?
Cons: price, but you get what you pay for
Overall Review: I waited for almost a month for the 500GB model to reappear, and finally had to give up and buy this one. I don't need 640GB of space, but I'll take it.
Pros: It's cheap. My wife didn't have a problem linking it to her LG 8600. It's lightweight and adjustable so it's comfortable to wear for long periods of time.
Cons: no noise cancellation at all
Overall Review: If you aren't in a noisy environment, this headset will work fine. If you are in a noisy environment, invest in a model with noise canceling.
Pros: There really isn't much to say. It's cheap and it works for my SD cards. It's sturdier than I expected, it fit my case properly, and it looks good.
Overall Review: I have only tried the USB port and the SD port, but both of them work.
Pros: It's a 10 dollar Vista x64 compatible webcam. What's not to love? It works, and Vista found drivers for it (no hunting for a mfgr website to dl from).
Cons: I took off an egg because the mic doesn't work on mine. I tried it with both my Audigy2 ZS and my onboard sound, and neither worked. Even tapping on the housing didn't get a response.
I didn't take off an egg for this, but the picture quality is very grainy. It's a cheap cam, so this is to be expected.
Also (another non-deduction complaint), this cam comes with a built in clip to secure it to an LCD. The clip doesn't open far enough to fit my Acer 20".
Overall Review: I bought this to talk to family members on Yahoo. There was no configuration required, it worked fine right out of the box. If you want to keep in touch with friends and family but don't want to spend a fortune, buy this.
Pros: This thing screams. I haven't found a way to bog it down yet. Mine hit 4.0Ghz out of the box, with very little vcore boost. These new 45nm chips run cooler and use less power than the 65nm models. Having 6MB of L2 means that your games will be faster than ever.
Cons: Price. You can get a quad for almost the same price, but the quad is slower unless the app actually uses all 4 cores.
Overall Review: I replaced an e2160 with this chip, and the difference is unbelievable. Even comparing them at the same speed (3Ghz), this e8400 mops the floor with the e2160.