Smallest graphics card which is superior to inbuilt CPU graphics10/26/2021 2:52:25 AM

Pros: Did not rely on Windows 10 inbuilt driver, downloaded from NVIDIA website. Superior to the CPU's inbuilt CPU graphics of HP Pro 3130 MT. Display and videos much faster now.

Cons: This card is not meant for gamers or professional graphics work.

Overall Review: If you have only CPU graphics of older CPUs (not Ryzen or Intel's recent generation CPUs), this card is a good step-up. Good for office work, Youtube videos, movies, etc. Just not for games or professional graphics work.

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Quality RAM10/23/2021 9:01:01 AM

Pros: Corsair, Crucial, Kingston make the best RAM on the market, with limited lifetime warranty. I have never had either of these RAM go bad on me in the past 20 years. Passed Windows Memory Diagnostic and Memtest86+ with flying colors. Of the name brands, Corsair has the best specs. The heat spreader keeps the RAM cool to touch, guaranteeing long life. I just upgraded a 5-year old assembled PC. The old RAM is Crucial. No compatibility issues.

Cons: None.

Overall Review: A word of caution: If you have a name-brand PC, use the memory finder of the manufacturer's website to find the correct RAM module - those ready-made PCs are picky about the RAM they use. Failure to do this might lead to avoidable returns. Once in my haste I ordered a Corsair RAM with correct specs for HP Pro 3130 MT, but the system will not even boot with two or even a single piece of RAM. I finally settled for RAM from MemoryStock (they guaranteed compatibility).

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Best no-nonsense USB wi-fi adapter I have tested9/3/2021 5:25:33 PM

Pros: I have tested many wi-fi adapters - ASUS, Linksys, Netgear, TP-Link - This I found the best so far. (1) Greater range, more powerful than those USB stub-like dongles (2) Much cheaper than those high-power adapters from Netgear and others (3) Windows 10 automatically installs the driver (though falsely recognizing it as Realtek device) - does not come with any driver mini-CD or download link. (4) Dual band - 2.4GHz + 5GHz

Cons: It is not the most powerful adapter I have seen, but at that rock-bottom price what can we expect?

Overall Review: I recommend this to everyone. Give it a try, and hey, keep it as a backup emergency wi-fi adapter.

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Very useful if you have a spare USB 3.0 connector on motherboard and 5.25" port on case8/11/2021 11:14:11 AM

Pros: Can be used for any USB drive (EXCEPT for loading Windows/OS from USB drive, keyboard and mouse connected here will not help you to get into the UEFI or BIOS), for charging phones, etc. [motherboard must have an unused USB 3.0 connector - cannot be plugged into existing USB 3.0 port in the back or front].

Cons: Most motherboard do not have more than one USB 3.0 connector. If you have front USB 3.0 ports (blue) on the case (they use up one USB 3.0 connector on the motherboard), you are out of luck - you cannot use this!

Overall Review: Make sure the motherboard has one free 19-pin USB 3.0 connector (and one available free SATA power connector) before buying!

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One of the most robust DVD burners out there8/10/2021 6:47:50 PM

Pros: Almost silent, fast, very reliable burner. I have been using this since an expert recommended this. I have installed more than a dozen, and to date NONE HAS TURNED BAD! The tray feels robust and more solid than the average burner out there. I never get coasters with this.

Cons: M-DISC support is non-existent. I could not find any reviewer mentioning this! M-DISC logo is also absent from the front of the drive (compare with LG). M-DISC support is only mentioned on two faces of the box (if you buy the retail version), and ONE brand of M-DISC is mentioned on company's website! If you put on a blank M-DISC (DVD), it will give no indication of any error, till the end when it aborts with a cryptic error message. Even the LED does not change color. On examination of the M-DISC blank DVD, appears like new, meaning nothing has been written, and one can try another failed session with the same blank.

Overall Review: If you do not need M-DISC DVD support, this is not for you. Otherwise, it is one of the best DVD burner on the market.

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Very useful if you have a spare USB 2.0 connector on motherboard and 5.25" port on case8/10/2021 6:30:07 PM

Pros: Can be used not only for mouse and keyboard (both wired and wireless), but also for USB drives meant for occasional file copies, and USB wi-fi adapters (less than 480Mbps). Usually most motherboards have one or more USB2.0 connectors.

Cons: It is USB 2.0, meaning very slow. Do not try to use it for backup or large copies.

Overall Review: Check your motherboard has one free USB 2.0 connector (and a free SATA power connector) before buying.

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Still the king of thermal pastes4/16/2019 10:03:50 PM

Pros: This is an aging product - no new version has come out in the last few years. I have worked on Arctic Silver, Arctic Silver 3 and Arctic Silver 5 (I could not find any difference in all three versions). Still I find them easiest to apply, do not harden (much) over the years, and excellent thermal conduction. Unlike cheaper pastes (which harden with time), these seem to retain their functionality easily for more than 5 years.

Cons: Price? This is among the priciest pastes out there.

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More than adequate for anyone except a audiophile4/13/2019 8:42:29 PM

Pros: Satellite (has front and back speakers) speakers are very clear, volume more than adequate.

Cons: Down-firing woofer is colored by floor material, best set on carpet or tiles (a little boomy on wood). The woofer volume has to be adjusted for each master sound level, and should never be set to max.

Overall Review: At this (refurbished) price point appears to give the best bang for the buck.

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Nowadays needed for troubleshooting4/12/2019 9:01:16 AM

Pros: There was a time when a speaker or piezo-driver was routinely present in motherboards, and assemblers/technicians depended on their audible error codes for trouble-free working. No more. Now most modern motherboards do not incorporate a sounding device, and we have to add this if we want to troubleshoot any issue. I routinely add this to all my builds. Saves a lot of time if any troubleshooting is needed.

Cons: None. they have to be properly connected maintain the polarity.

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well-made 80-wire IDE cable for two drives4/12/2019 1:35:11 AM

Pros: Very well made, meets Ultra ATA 66/100/133 for upto two devices. The master/slave configurations have to be decided by jumpers on the drives - the positions on the cables are interchangeable.

Cons: No cons - except they are not like the round cables and might create some obstruction to airflows.

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Verified Owner
Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
Simple economic KVM switch4/12/2019 1:28:32 AM

Pros: If one needs to switch only monitor, USB keyboard and USB mouse (wired or wireless) between two computers by a simple push-button remote (not keyboard shortcuts), then this is just right for the job. If one needs speakers (or microphones), one needs separate speakers(/microphones) for each computer.

Cons: Does not switch speakers but that is just nitpicking. Separate network connections are needed as also in every other KVM. Does not offer keyboard shortcuts.

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Add 2xUSB3.0 painlessly2/4/2019 1:06:26 PM

Pros: If you have a free USB 3.0/3.1 header on your motherboard and a free expansion slot on the back of your case, you can easily add two more USB 3.0 ports to your computers. Works seamlessly - no new driver to install.

Cons: None.

Overall Review: You probably need to bend the bottom lip slightly inwards to make it a tight, rigid fit. Otherwise there might be a slight play when you insert or remove your device cable.

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Differences between R1(rev.4.1/rev.5.0/rev.6.0 ) and R2 versions1/22/2019 10:12:22 PM

Pros: (1) R2 has faster USB 3.1 (backward compatible - can take all the way upto USB 1.1 devices); R1 has USB 3.0. This is the only major difference. (2) R2 has 4-pin ATX_12V connector; R1 had 8-pin ATX_12V connector. If power supply has 8-pin connector, fortunately it can be split to engage only 4-pins (in all the power supplies I have encountered). Unfortunately no other improvement made. Like older (R1) model, still has 1 PATA port for older DVD drives - so one does not have to upgrade the DVD drives also..

Cons: Unfortunately, like older models (R1) still support only upto SATA II (3.0Gb/s). Still uses the dated AMD 3000 series graphics. Older model had generic ESD protection and more robust; R2 has ESD protection only on the LAN and USB ports (so ground yourself and case while handling). I had to return twice (one with Gigabyte one with Newegg).

Overall Review: Only makes sense if one still has PATA DVD drives - otherwise one should go with newer models (to get SATA III etc.).

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use an after-market cooler7/20/2015 10:17:41 AM

Pros: Quad core, 2 GHz, cheap, barely produces heat.

Cons: I built it for a customer, rigorously tested it, used in a 3-OS built PC. After a few months got report than CRASHES ON YOUTUBE IF RUN CONTINUOUSLY FOR 3 DAYS ON WINDOWS7 (is fine with windows XP). I am trying to use an after-market cooler to see if it fixes the issue. So has APU issues if continuously run on graphics intensive apps.

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