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Jason W.

Jason W.

Joined on 08/31/05

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 7
Most Favorable Review

High End Air Cooling

CORSAIR Hydro Series H60 (CWCH60) High Performance Liquid CPU Cooler
CORSAIR Hydro Series H60 (CWCH60) High Performance Liquid CPU Cooler

Pros: It cools the CPU and does about 10x better than the stock Intel heatsink/fan on my Intel Core i7-2600k. Also pretty easy to install. Even in a push/pull configuration, it still hangs in the good air-cooling league. With a decent overclock, the temperatures can hang in the 78-82C range (Vcore ~1.43V)

Cons: Not able to get heat off the processor fast enough at high speed/voltage. Understandable considering the price, radiator size, and the fan that comes with it. A couple of better fans ($30) and it becomes a more promising option. Of course, adding $30 to the total cost of this thing makes it less of a 'bargain'.

Overall Review: If you want to keep the weight off your motherboard and have some decently quiet cooling, I'd go this route. What I wouldn't do is expect that this will put you firmly in water cooling territory where a 5.1GHz overclock at 1.46v is even close to maintainable.

Most Critical Review

90% of the Parts, 100% Quality

EKWB EK-KIT Performance Series PC Watercooling Kit P280
EKWB EK-KIT Performance Series PC Watercooling Kit P280

Pros: This is a substantial purchase. The radiator is huge (45mm depth) and if you don't plan ahead...well, you'll have a bad day (or a new case). The pump/reservoir mounts pretty sturdily via the provided 140mm mount, and the included CPU waterblock has enough configuration options for basically anything you throw at it. Everything is quality and fit perfectly in my Corsair 750D.

Cons: This was for an AMD Ryzen build. While there were Intel and AMD backplates included, they forgot to put in the AM4 backplate which is required. The stock backplates for Ryzen are M3-threaded, the EK AM4 backplate requires M4-threaded holes. Unfortunately, this stops any AM4 build.

Overall Review: If you're on Intel or non-AM4 AMD processors: this is a great package and will get you up and running. If you're working with an AMD Ryzen 7 1800X or 1700X that come without a heatsink/fan, you may find that you'll be emailing EKWB Support for a certain backplate and your build will be on hold until everything is sorted. Until I can get the back plate for the kit, I can only rate it 3 eggs. Once everything is sorted, I'll update the rating.

Great Value

NORCO RPC-3216 Black 3U Rackmount Server Chassis
NORCO RPC-3216 Black 3U Rackmount Server Chassis

Pros: The chassis is exactly what I was expecting: good value and great features. It's hard to find a case that does all of this without having to sacrifice your first-born to get it. You can also mount three hard drives internally (two 2.5" and one 3.5").

Cons: The 80mm fans are very, very loud. After working with servers all day, I came home and installed all the pieces and parts to get it going and was taken aback by the noise. To be fair, however, this is a server chassis and designed to move air, not to save your eardrums. Also, the 3.5" drive is hard to get to since it is mounted beneath the power supply.

Overall Review: After replacing the four 80mm fans, the sounds has become much more acceptable. I can no longer hear the server outside (not joking) on my balcony. It's a good deal and I would recommend it for anyone who is seriously looking at a serious storage setup on a budget.

Good Processor

Intel Xeon X3430 Lynnfield 2.4 GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W BX80605X3430 Server Processor
Intel Xeon X3430 Lynnfield 2.4 GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W BX80605X3430 Server Processor

Pros: It's a Lynnfield processor, four cores and four threads. Runs cool enough with the stock heatsink and fan.

Cons: The Intel stock heatsink and fan. The processor by itself works well under heavy load. If you buy anything that Intel is selling (other than the hexacore processors), get yourself a different heatsink and fan to go on it.

Overall Review: Even with the shady heatsink/fan setup, it simply works.

Great Board

ASUS P7F-E ATX Server Motherboard LGA 1156 Intel 3420 w/ Flex-E Technology
ASUS P7F-E ATX Server Motherboard LGA 1156 Intel 3420 w/ Flex-E Technology

Pros: Easy to install, BIOS is fairly easy to navigate around. The real pro is that it simply worked. Installed the motherboard into the chassis, installed the processor, and installed the operating system. No issues with the RAM or the processor.

Cons: Make sure you check your RAM before you purchase the motherboard. It will save you severe headaches. Also, the motherboard requires a PIKE card to activate the 8 SAS/SATA ports along the edge of the motherboard.

Overall Review: The board was installed into a file server running Nexenta. It's quiet, doesn't complain, and wasn't as painful as other motherboards I've installed.

A Good Purchase

LSI MegaRAID Internal  Low-Power SATA/SAS 9240-8i 6Gb/s PCI-Express 2.0 RAID Controller Card, Single--Avago Technologies
LSI MegaRAID Internal Low-Power SATA/SAS 9240-8i 6Gb/s PCI-Express 2.0 RAID Controller Card, Single--Avago Technologies

Pros: The card does exactly what I want it to. The drivers install easily in OpenSolaris and after a reboot, it identifies all the drives.

Cons: A small thing: the card doesn't run the WebBIOS on bootup to configure the card. After hitting Ctrl-H, the card simply continues on to boot. For me, it's not an issue since the default setting is for the controller card to act as a simple SAS/SATA controller, but for those who want a bit o' hardware RAID, it's significant.

Overall Review: I haven't tested the RAID functions of the card and, to be honest, I probably won't. The card is being used in an OpenSolaris build running ZFS and I was looking for something a bit better than the previous RocketRaid controller card I had. I currently have four 1.5TB Samsung drives hooked up and no issues with another 4 drives on the way.