Date Joined: 10/20/02
Pros: * Boils water well and fast
* Dispenser still works
* Gauge shows water level inside
Cons: * PLASTIC BEHIND THE METAL INNER LID MELTED/DECAYED, CONTAMINATING THE WATER FOR WHO KNOWS HOW LONG??
* Magnetic cord attachment can detach relatively easily
Overall Review: I purchased this item in late 2009 and it had served me quite well. For the past 4 years my wife used it for her daily hot water needs, which mostly involve making herself tea.
She had noted some 'calcium' buildup within the unit over the past year or two. Also, the steam release area up top had started to discolor, probably from its frequent use. These were not major issues.
This week she decided to give the unit a good internal cleaning of the 'calcium' bits. Oddly, one of the 3 screws attached to the internal metal lid had come loose and fallen into the water reservoir (this is noted by another reviewer here as well!). The more she rinsed away the small white chunks, the more came out from within the lid itself. She unscrewed the metal inner lid and discovered THE PLASTIC PART BEHIND IT HAD DECAYED, MELTED AND WAS DISSOLVING. Those calcium deposits she had noticed were dissolving plastic. It was had become chalky and extremely brittle due to the repeated exposure to heat.
It instantly made us sick to think we had been ingesting dissolved plastic for all that time. Who knows what kind of plastic was used for that section, as this was manufactured a long time before BPA concerns were as prominent.
I don't know if this is a design issue which would affect all hot water boilers. 6-7 years is a long time to have a boiler, but with no obvious defects, there was no reason to replace it. We're disgusted by this whole situation.
Pros: *One of the only LGA775 boards out there that supports DDR2 667 (The only one that Newegg stocks at least).
*Built in graphics chip sufficient for HD video graphics (not gaming)
*Built-in digital sound output
Cons: *The ratings here at all over the place, due to bad units and parts breaking down.
*The board provides sound via a single digital output headphone jack. Not a coaxial digital output, and not a digital optical output. This means your speaker system must be compatible with this. I had to put in an old SB Audigy 2 to get center and surround channels operational with my existing speaker set up.
Overall Review: My old HTPC died and I was looking for a way to salvage everything. It was a C2D E6600 running DDR2 667 memory. This was the only board on Newegg that would fit the specs. I run 2 SATA drives as well as 2 PATA drives, so having PATA support was also important. Unfortunately my PATA dvd burner can't be included in this build as the board only has 1 PATA slot (to accompany 1 master, 1 slave).
I was running a 10-year-old fanless AGP video card. I was curious if the built in 3100 GMA Intel graphics would supersede an Nvidia FX5200. Yes, yes it does.
I run in my video capture through a Silicondust HDHR, and also use an analog->digital converter card. So, having at least 1 PCI slot is crucial, as well as a LAN plug. Because the audio out didn't provide surround sound to my speaker setup, I used the 2nd and last PCI slot for my sound card.
There are quite a few mid-low ratings here due to build quality and tendency for this board to fail. Probably well deserved. The LAN for me failed half a week after I installed it! I thought this was just soooo typical until I viewed some of the posts on here.
Fortunately it looks like someone in the Spring of 2013 had a similar problem, and Asrock posted on here a link to their new drivers. The latest as of this writing were from 10/11/13. Re-installed the LAN drivers and it picked back up again. We'll see how long or if that lasts. Here's link, which DOES NOT show up if you go to the G31M-GS specific page on Asrock's website:
Pros: Upgrading from my older E6600 Core2Duo to a better gaming rig.
*Tons of USB 2.0
*Enough SATA connectors and an eSATA
*Lots of overclocking settings
*PCI legacy support x 2
*IDE legacy support which I needed
Cons: MISSING SUPPORT DVD. Just like the last 2 reviewers.
If you read the last 2 reviews, what's going on with the packaging and missing accessories?! Looks like Newegg got a shoddy shipment. I contacted Newegg, and though sympathetic, they could only offer a RMA. RMA for a DVD?? And what guarantee is there the new, unopened box would even have one? The 3/22/2010 reviewer said he "notified Newegg about the CD and they were working on getting me one." How about working to get me one too, hmm?
Newegg support suggested I call ASUS support. ASUS told me they don't carry those particularly support DVDs to send out. That's less than helpful.
Yes, you can download these off the support site, but it's nice, convenient, and I think expected to have them all in one place. If I wanted the mystery of missing accessories ala open box, I would have bought an open box and not this retail version.
1 egg downgrade for the runaround.
Overall Review: There are 14 variations of the P7P55D ASUS board, each with different specs re: eSATA, USB 3.0, PCIe x 16, etc. Study carefully before choosing!
Arrived with the original BIOS (504), upgraded to the latest BIOS no problems.
I chose this particular version because I did not need USB 3.0, did need older PCI cards, did need IDE/PATA, and might one day want to run SLI grafx cards. The overclock BIOS selections are plentiful, though I am not actively trying them out.
There are a lot of onboard audio output options (optical, coaxial, and standard analog jacks). However, my older Boston BA7500G needs a digital output via a single headphone jack which this board could not supply (used my old SB Audigy 2 ZS with some altered drivers as Win7 has a lot of problems, goog "audigy series support pack 3.7").
4gb G.Skill Ripjaws DDR3-1600 (2x2gb)
Nvidia 8800 GT
Audigy 2 ZS
Antec Earthwatts 650
Pros: I've put in 2 ATSC PCI tuner cards as well as an analog tuner card into my HTPC, so I feel I know my tuner appliances pretty well. The HDHomerun works pretty well seeing as you hook it up through an ethernet port and you don't need another PCI card slot. You get two tuners with each unit, which is great for its purpose--you should really have 2 tuners (at least) for any HTPC so you can watch and record different shows at the same time.
Comes with two coaxial cables to connect to both tuners as well as an ethernet cable to go from the HDHR to your computer/router.
The support forum at SiliconDust is really on top of any issues. There's a lot of active support and member input, so you'll have somewhere to turn if it just doesn't work right.
You can hook this up to a laptop with an ethernet port and get HD or cable on your laptop.
Cons: Took some fiddling to make it work reliably with my SageTV configuration. Probably more having to do with SageTV than anything else. I had hooked up my cable cord to a splitter, then put the two outputs into the 2 tuners (so you can tune/record 2 channels at once). I wasn't getting great signal strength for the clearQAM HD channels, so I had to readjust the splitter and output coaxial cables.
I suppose another con is that you do need to have a spare ethernet port on either your computer or router.
Overall Review: Comcast cable is making the transition in many areas to digital only for anything past the most basic cable. Thus, a clearQAM tuner card will soon be required to get the higher channels, meaning my analog tuner would soon be useless. I figured this would be a great asset and I'm glad I purchased it.
I have this hooked directly into my HTPC. If you hook it up to your router, you probably need a wired connection directly into the router to optimize data transfers. You can't do HD over wireless due to bandwidth limitations unless you have a N-router.
Pros: Great hardware encoding which minimizes CPU usage
Cons: Installation CD does not work properly
Does not come with its own media software
Ridiculous inset coaxial jack! (One of the other reviews talks about which Radiosh*ck part works to make this compatible--get it!)
Overall Review: I'd like to retract the previous review I wrote where I gave it 1 egg. Turns out the media program I was using, SageTV, causes issues with the card unless properly configured. FYI, you can change the encoding resolution on SageTV for your analog recordings; however, only some of them (the higher ones) are compatible with the card!
Once configured properly, it works great. No problems with encoding, which minimal CPU usage.
This card is also known in other circles as the Conexant Blackbird.
Pros: Newegg RMA?
Cons: Could not get it to work properly. The video displayed was complete garbage! On 2 computers. Both with the original and RMA cards. I'm guessing it's incompatible with my systems, which are Windows XP Pro. Maybe there's something else conflicting? My old ATI Wonder HDTV drivers perhaps?
Overall Review: I was looking for a hardware encoding MPEG card for my home theater PC. I already had the original ATI Wonder HDTV, but the analog cable encoding was way off, resulting in audio/video sync issues that were completely different for EVERY recording. Probably due to the crummy software encoding.
I found this on Newegg and thought it looked good. After receiving it and installing the proper drivers (could not install the drivers with the autorun program on the CD! Had to install the card first, then direct windows to the drivers directory on the CD), it was recognized fine by the computer.
Using Sagetv, the image came in completely corrupted. The bottom 1/3rd of the image was a mix of purple/pink pixels. The top 2/3rds was a triplicate image of what was supposed to be coming through. The audio was fine, but that was about it.
Not worth a return at this point.
Pros: Finally lets me join the modern age of graphic gaming. Can run Call of Duty 4 at almost full power. Bioshock is not a problem. Gears of War runs like a dream. Quieter (believe it or not) than my old AGP card.
Cons: Runs a little hot at stock settings (30% fan speed runs at 65-69oC or so after gaming). Very very long card! Measure your motherboard first to make sure you don't have any hassles. Just barely fit into my ASRock 775-DualVSTA, runs into my IDE cable sockets somewhat.
Overall Review: Had some major issues initially due to my "overclocking" on my 775-DualVSTA (kind of a joke mobo for overclocking really). Had continous reboots from memory lockups initially after upgrading from my EVGA 7800GS AGP KO Superclock. Finally after resetting my mobo BIOS to the default speed settings had no problems. Running 1.5gb RAM, E6600 at 2.4 ghz (back down to stock from a measly 2.6 ghz OC). Earlier versions of the card BIOS had compatibility issues with the 775DualVSTA mobo unless the graphics card BIOS was updated (requiring a different mobo that WAS compatible to do this), no longer an issue here.
Pros: Got a great price at a local brick/mortar store on a special (sorry Newegg)! USB2 AND Firewire 400. High capacity. Option to increase throughput on USB by 30% by installing their custom driver. Auto-shutdown with computer is nice.
On the back, there is the option of using the auto-shutdown, where the HD turns off with your computer, or manual, where it responds to the on/off switch in the back. The choice is a nice added feature. The disk sometimes "sleeps" (the "on" LED up front turns off) when you are connected to the computer without activity for some time. Somehow Windows XP knows the disk is still there, and will wake the disk when it needs to.
Cons: Large footprint, somewhat bulky. Can topple over quite easily, as some other reviews point out.
Overall Review: I got this locally for a great deal. If you search for Turbousb, you might find some info on this technology. Buffalo used to claim 60% increase, now on my box it's down to 30%, which is substantiated by the reviews you find. Basically, you have the option of somehow increasing throughput on their USB2.0 connection by installing a special driver. I didn't think it was worth messing with my Windows XP USB driver system for this, so I did not try it. This was my first firewire capable external HD (I have had several USB2.0), so that's what I use.
Overall, I'm pretty happy with this. Use it along with a different external 500gb HD as my 2 backups.
Pros: Has a good pedigree, RiData in the past had made some very good DVD-Rs, particularly their 4x DVD-Rs. But I will never trust them again.
Cons: Every single one, a bad burn. That went undetected until MONTHS later when I tried to access my "backup" data and found I couldn't. These are rated at 16x, which my burner, a NEC 3500, burnt fine at. However, with data verification (which I now do on all burns), it would invariably find an error >50% through the disk.
Overall Review: Perhaps this was an incompatability with the burner. Or maybe these discs can't actually be burnt at their rated 16x speed without a problem. I should have realized that I had a whole spindle of trouble when my Gateway laptop would not complete a full burn with these. Burnt DVD movies will skip a few chapters because of the poor burn. I'd stay away!
Pros: Pricing? I purchased this from a brick/mortar store during a sale. I regret having not checked out the reviews for it prior to making this mistake.
The review by "techrat" is accurate to a great degree. However, I believe there are two separate problems which can occur with this disk. The one that techrat describes is where a Windows XP computer is unable to properly detect the hard drive if it is connected when you boot the computer. You can easily work around this per techrat's description, provided you don't do anything rash, such as click "format" when Windows asks you to do so when it can't detect the disk! The data is still there, and readable, provided you hook up the drive after the computer has booted.
Cons: The second, MUCH more serious problem, unfortunately affected me, where the file partition table was corrupted/destroyed. Perhaps the master boot record (MBR) as well. How this happens, no one seems to be sure of. Perhaps people disconnect the drive unsafely--that is, pull the USB plug without clicking on the "safely remove hardware" icon first. Regardless, the symptoms are the same--Windows will post a drive letter, but no hard drive capacity. Trying to read the drive will result in a "do you want to format?" question. This is NOT the same as techrat describes, as your data here will NOT be accessible no matter how you boot your computer or hook up the USB.
There may be some ways to recover from this, particularly using a freeware utility called testdisk. I tried using this to rework my damaged boot sector, which helped with only part of the problem. I very unfortunately then ran "chkdsk /f" on the drive, which brought back Window's ability to see the drive at its proper si
Overall Review: Unfortunately at the same time, I lost ALL my "backup" data on this drive. I don't recommend you use chkdsk if you care to recover any data.
PLEASE PLEASE read up on this drive if you even think about buying it. I purchased this from a brick/mortar store for a great price, which I now regret.
Forums are full of people crying for some sort of help (search for "maxtor onetouch 4 lost partition"). The support response so far is anecdotal, minimal, and often antagonistic.
Is this what you want in a "backup" drive? Don't get it, you'll regret it.
Pros: Appears flashy and neat. Nice silver exterior. Holds 2 SD cards.
Cons: The nice silvery exterior is actually a poor product design as it is very slippery. I dropped my Palm TX more than a few times as a result of this. The 'latch' mechanism is a joke--2 pieces of plastic somehow hook onto one another. This inevitably wears out (sometimes as soon as 1 month) with no identifiable way to fix it. No ports cut into the case, so even to turn on the thing, or to pull out the stylus, or charge the silly thing, involves rotating the Palm out of the case. There is also no padding on the inside. The Palm also fits poorly in the case, so it rattles around incessantly. I actually taped some bubblewrap to the inside to get it to shut up. Gee, does this thing even serve 1 purpose a case should?
Overall Review: I was totally deceived by the flashy appearance of this thing, bypassing the other, way more useful cases made by third parties. I have since bought a different, form-fitting case, also made of aluminum, but with cut-outs and padding, for cheaper.
DO NOT waste your time with this. It looks neat, but is totally worthless from an engineering and functional standpoint. You've been warned!
Pros: Compact, cools great for its size. Dropped my ridiculous 60oC idle (!!!) Athlon 3000+XP down to 45, on the slowest fan setting. Includes a fan controller which will vary the fan speed, for optimum noise/cooling benefit. The fan controller can be installed into an empty PCI slot.
Cons: As others have mentioned, can be a difficult installation. I hardheadedly refused to remove the mobo for this, but I did have to take out my PSU as it was very close to the installation site. On a Socket A (Athlon), can only be installed in 1 of 2 orientations. Because of my PSU, could only be installed in 1 orientation, which is the one NOT recommended by Scythe. Still works great though.
Overall Review: Includes a ridiculous amount of hardware for mounting on different CPU types. I think the socket A is probably the easiest, with just a latch bar that runs across the bottom portion.
Pros: Compact (essentially the size of a newer generation iPod), shiny black exterior that is aesthetically pleasing, LED battery indicator, versatile, comes with a protective case
Cons: ? if other battery options last longer.
Does not come with 5V DC charger though the item has a charging port for it.
Overall Review: I was looking for an external battery for recharging my Palm TX for extended usage on trips away from a DC outlet. This is it! While marketed for the iPod community, this has so many other uses (for me, recharges my Palm TX, BT GPS, my NON-iPOD Mp3 player, cell phone). Really, anything that takes a 5V input can be powered with this, given the proper USB cable.
Many of the other portable options out there for giving iPod (and other peripherals with USB charge sockets) extra battery life involves 9V batteries or AA (such as MintyBoost). While quite compact and clever from an engineering standpoint (these live inside Altoids containers), they require batteries. As this unit costs a mere ~1.5x those, the convenience of rechargability really made the decision easy for me.
There is ONE other portable, rechargeable Li-ion battery that supposedly gives 20 hours more battery life to an iPod, but it appears larger, bulkier, and comes in white. Yuck.
Pros: Inexpensive, fast, ?quiet, warranty
Overall Review: I bought this HD to bulk up my HTPC setup (digital TV capture takes up a crazy amount of space!). So far, I haven't directly installed it into the computer but rather hooked it up to a USB drive enclosure.
The price/GB is really very nice, so buying multiple of these can be a better solution than 1 larger HD (if your case can hold them).
Looking at reviews on other sites, the new perpendicular recording format makes this a speedy little thing for accessing and writing data.
I personally think this HD is pretty quiet, but I haven't owned a lot of the premier drives to compare.
The 5 year warranty is also great. You might not get your data back if it crashes, but you'll get a new HD!