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MICHAEL L.

MICHAEL L.

Joined on 02/15/11

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 6
Most Favorable Review
AMD FirePro V5800 100-505839 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 CrossFire Supported Workstation Video Card White Box
AMD FirePro V5800 100-505839 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 CrossFire Supported Workstation Video Card White Box

Pros: Great price-to-performance ratio for a workstation card. I'm not a fan of purchasing workstation video cards, but we do use applications that render with OpenGL. If you're working with large assemblies in SolidWorks 2010-2012, this should card be sufficient. Does not need additional power. Crossfire.

Cons: No DisplayPorts.

Overall Review: Performance was better than other brands' products at similar price points. Make sure the software you use actually utilizes GPU cores before spending more than what this card costs.

Most Critical Review

Decent for SolidWorks 2011

PNY Quadro 2000 VCQ2000-PB 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 Workstation Video Card
PNY Quadro 2000 VCQ2000-PB 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 Workstation Video Card

Pros: This card is great for smaller to medium assemblies in SolidWorks 2011. The technical specs aren't anything to brag about, but this card will get the job done.

Cons: - The price is a bit high for this level of performance, but that's not ENTIRELY the fault of the manufacturer. - Definitely go with a higher end card if you have large assemblies. There's a lot of other stuff to consider with larger assemblies, but don't go cheap on the GPU route. - This card will hate you for running simulations, but it will do them, begrudgingly.

Overall Review: Despite the card being adequate for our needs, I'll be going with a GPU a notch higher next time. I'd rather have more than just enough. The computer with this card will make a nice backup workstation.

Only has one problem over Windows 7

Microsoft Windows 8 Professional 64-bit (Full Version)
Microsoft Windows 8 Professional 64-bit (Full Version)

Pros: - Improved optimizations -- Faster boot times -- Faster application start times -- Better resource management - Improved frameworks - PowerShell controls everything, automate whatever

Cons: - Start Screen

Overall Review: Had to see what the commotion was all about when I bought Win8, figured it was going to be trash. Turns out the only thing that's wrong with the OS is the Start Screen, and there are literally dozens of free and/or paid applications that adequately replicate the Windows 7 start menu.

Average

IDEAL 33-700 RJ-11, RJ-45 Telemaster Crimp Kit
IDEAL 33-700 RJ-11, RJ-45 Telemaster Crimp Kit

Pros: I've crimped hundreds of connectors with this thing and it still works.

Cons: While it still works, it's not the most durable piece of equipment out there. The spring mechanism that pushes the handle back rubs up against the inside portion of the handle, so crimping doesn't feel fluid. Not really that big of a deal, but it does get stuck sometimes. The blue plastic part at the head of the tool has snapped in half, but this thing is like 2 years old.

Overall Review: For the price? Eh. Get something else.

10/26/2011
GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD4-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD4-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: All advertised features work seamlessly. USB 3.0 stable. SATA 6 Gbps is smooth. Just read the product description at Gigabyte's site. Overclocking is simple through the BIOS.

Cons: Gigabyte's applications aren't the best unless you just want a very simple way of overclocking your components.

Overall Review: There's a lot of great stuff on this board, and I'm not going to drill down the list since other people have already. It's always nice to have a solid, stable motherboard right of the box and this board delivers. - Vertex 3 120 GB Max IOPS Edition loves this motherboard.

Can't say anything bad about it

CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9B
CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9B

Pros: Corsair quality RAM: stable, fast, cool. Great price for the quantity and quality. You want to OC it? It'll do that, too. Works great for both Intel and AMD setups.

Cons: None, really.

Overall Review: I remember buying 4gb of DDR2 for about this much. That doesn't seem like it was too long ago.