Date Joined: 03/30/06
Pros: Cheap. Free shipping. Tides me over until I can buy something better.
Cons: Replaced my two 1 GB sticks with 2 of these 2GB GSKILLS. I couldnt get it to run stable at DDR2 1066 no matter what. Entered the settings manually in the bios according to the EPP and upped voltage to 2.25 and still no luck. I relaxed all the timings by as much as 2 CLKS over EPP and still no luck. Finally gave up and just run it at DDR2-800.
Overall Review: AMD Phenom II 940 BE with Biostar T-Series 790GX Chipset. While testing this ram, I had the CPU at all stock settings. (no overclocks) I could get my 2 year old Crucial LanFest (2x1GB) Memory to run at DDR2-1066 no problem on this mother board. Bought these not planning to do any overcocking with them, and i cant even run them on the manufacturers setting!
Pros: uATX with AMD's premier 790GX chipset, overclocks well, 4-phase power supports 140W CPUs, great voltage control for uATX, Phenom II X4 support, HDMI output, PCI-Express 2.0, supports 16 GB of RAM, biostar's website relatively easy to get thorugh to find drivers.
Cons: Overall, this is a great uATX board and probably one of three from newegg that gives you decent overclocking options. I have to deduct one egg because I am simply disappointed with the uATX market for enthusiasts. I wish someone would release a uATX motherboard built for over-clocking with NO bult in graphics and no PCI slots and no IDE connectors. Just SATA, two PCI express 2.0 x16 slots, and maybe a coule PCI express 2.0 x1 slots. And of course, a firewire port. This would allow me to run SLI or xfire, along with throwing in a decent sound card if I wanted. Why do we need PCI or IDE these days?
Overall Review: I very easily transitioned from a AMD 780 based ASUS Motherboard and 7750 BE running Vista 64 SP2. Vista recognized everything at bootup. The realtek sound driver had to be reloaded even though it was recognized correctly. Vista asked to be reactivated since I replaced the CPU and MB at once.
I am currently running a Phenom II x4 940 BE (3.0GHz stock) and some pretty old Lanfest DDR2-800 memory.
So far, I have only done an initial overclock:
I was able to bring the multiplier to 17x (3.40 GHZ) on the CPU without raising the voltage. I then brought the voltage up to 2.15V on the memory (EPP profile 2) and ran it at 1066 at 5-5-5-18. It has been stable with several loops of Crysis and L4D. CPU has not gone above 47 deg C.
Apevia X-QPACK Case
ATI Radeon 3870
Seagate 7200.10 320 GB
Pros: Follow Up to a review I wrote earlier - Its an HD3870, its fast, it will paly about anything, GPU can be overclocked high (875 MHz)
Cons: Memory Cooling really is not well done, not stable much above the stock setting.
Overall Review: After playing quite a bit with overclocks on this card, I realize the zerotherm is great for the GPU, but it doesn't do as good with the memory. If you can look closely at the pics, the memory heat sink is just a flat piece of copper in an 'L' shape that runs along each chip. There are no cooling fins and not really much airflow to these. This is even worse of a cooling solution than the ref. design. In order to get better memory speeds, you will need to get aftermarket memory coolers for these.
Pros: Great cooling, 55nm technology, mid-range card that gets high-end performance, low power.
Barely fits in my APEVIA X-QPACK Case (had to finagle it in). Played the Crysis demo on it and it does impress, but couldnt get FRAPS to work to tell me frame rates. Card runs at about 40 Deg C at Idle, about 58 Deg C at load when overclocked to 850 MHz and 1170 Memory Clock. It can go higher (I got it to 875 CPU), but I dont want to push it.
Cons: Simply the reference design with a better cooler on it. No included game. Long card, higher than MSRP.
Overall Review: Apevia X-QPACK case with included Aspire 420 Watt PS, AMD Athlon X2 4600 (65W), ASUS M2NPV-VM Motherboard, Zalman CPU Cooler. Upgraded from 7600GS silent, so not so silent anymore, but not too bad.
Pros: This is a decent little board with all the features you need. 4 RAM slots available, very well laid out.
Cons: I wish ASUS would release a very configurable uATX board with two PCI X-16 slots and no onboard video, ditch the PATA IDE and Floppy connectors. The BIOS on this thing wont let you do much for overclocking, no voltage control over RAM or CPU.
Overall Review: I bought this board several months ago. I am currently using it for my LAN Party BOX and it has done well. Overclocked AMD X2 4600 to 2.7 GHz (225 x 12) with Crucial OCZ lanfest RAM at DDR2-900 5-5-5-10. Stable for all I throw at it.
Pros: This is some great memory for the price. I have ordered (or had my customers order) over 30 of these over the last year, and I have never had DOA or memory issues.
Cons: Be careful, as some cheapo motherboards may not see these. I have a client with some HP dx2200 P4-D machines (brand new boxes that were about 350.00 each) that wouldn't recognize these. (they just gave the memory beep at startup)
Overall Review: The heat spreader is a bit overkill, as this is not really an Enthusiast memory and it looks like it is intended to be. I have tried to push these on my ASUS board and didnt have much luck as with pricier RAM. G.Skill makes much better ram for overclocking and performance if this is your goal.
I gave these a rating of 5 mainly becasue they are the best performance/price for upgrading low-end machines.