Date Joined: 03/08/07
Pros: The existing Corsair PSU I was using had it's fan off-balance and would vibrate. This was really annoying to hear while working throughout the day. Was excited to try out this unit since it wouldn't spin up unless it was needed.
My workstation consists of an i5, two DIMMs, SSD, 2.5" HDD, and an older silent video card (which pairs well with this PSU). My work load consists of remote terminals so very little happens locally. This equates to a near silent experience without the video card or PSU spinning up. If you listen carefully you can only hear the CPU and case fan.
Installation was...installing a PSU. Nothing to say about it.
Cons: Wish the cables would have been in a sleeve, would look nicer and be less prone to getting nicked.
Overall Review: Nothing wrong with this unit.
Pros: I have a Dell Vostro 200 that was built for Windows XP. Up until now it was the spare computer no one wanted to use. Recently my 10 year old wanted to play some games on the PC but I lacked a gaming PC. So we took the Vostro and upgraded the CPU, video card, and hard drive. I had previously installed a 600W Antec PSU, but with the CPU and GPU upgrades caused the internal breaker to flip constantly.
I knew 600W was enough for the parts we installed but it was obvious the Antec was not up to the task. My son was very excited to install the Corsair as it was modular since he hated the extra cables from the Antec. Installation was standard with only a slight hiccup with the CPU power connector. Since this is a Dell motherboard nothing can be easy, we had to pull back some of the sheath on the P2 connector then twist it around so the pins would match up. This was a Dell issue and was not caused by the PSU.
This Corsair 650W PSU is able to power the heavily outdated, and inefficient, GTX 470 and the Core 2 Duo 3GHZ CPU. No loss of power and no cooling issues either. The build quality is good enough to withstand my son kicking the computer off it's stand in the middle of the night. The fan has yet to come unbalanced.
Cons: No cons that I can think of. It's a PSU and it works.
Overall Review: I really like this unit, have added it to my approved replacement part lists at work.
Pros: It supports up to 4 displays, though only able to use three, in Fedora 24 using open source drivers. The unit runs cool and the fan rarely spins up. Thought considering I'm just a Systems Analyst I don't push it that hard. I appreciate a silent workstation so this is a huge plus.
Cons: With using the default open source drivers I can only get three displays to work. When time permits I will go through the tedious AMD driver install process which should allow the fourth display to show up.
Overall Review: Mainly used to display web pages, RDP sessions, terminals, and the occasional youtube video. Great workstation display for the price.
Pros: Needed to re-image laptops at work one at time. Decided a flash drive would be the best method for this type of deployment and 128GB was just enough for two most commonly used images. The speeds are respectable and stable with up to 70MB/s transfer rates to/from mechanical hard drives using Clonezilla over USB 3.0 . USB 2.0 is saturated by the drive.
As stated performance is very stable. I was thinking it would fluctuate based on the price of the unit and the possible use of inferior chips. Pleasantly surprised with being able to image one of our laptops in under ten minutes. This has been a huge benefit as I drive up to two hours visiting different locations. When a user reports their system is performing poorly I can pop this in and have them up and running in 30 minutes total.
It is made of plastic but overall build quality is not bad. Strong enough I feel comfortable shipping them across the US and letting users in remote offices image their own systems until the PXE boot server is in place.
Cons: Though not really a con the partition table had to be wiped out and rebuilt with MBR for Clonezilla to boot off of it properly. So if your going to make this a bootable drive keep that in mind.
The other issue I have is the use of shiny plastic. Seriously, flash drives get thrown in drawers and pants pockets. Shiny plastic is not practical and scratches easily.
Overall Review: After reviewing this unit I went out and purchased several more to ship to various locations. Very happy with performance/cost ratio.
Pros: Performance is great. In an extremely old Dell running 5GB of RAM and a Pentium dual core CPU the bottleneck is no longer the disk. Where as the Crucial budget line would perform better than mechanical disks, but then slow down, this unit would continue to perform like new.
Considering the SATA bus is slower than what the drive supports I am not going to post any numbers. Random IO is actually very good for a budget drive with Windows 10 booting and recovering from sleep quickly enough to be on-par with modern systems.
Cons: The only con was when I cloned an existing Windows 10 installation over there was an issue at the log in screen. For some reason it would reset every second making it impossible to log in. However a clean install of Windows 10 did not see this problem. Granted this could be an issue with the ancient Windows install that has been upgraded several times.
Overall Review: This has replaced Crucial as my go-to for budget SSDs.
Pros: Very easy to setup for anyone not a network engineer. Solid construction, and stays firmly in wall socket with my media center power strip plugged into the unit. The signal is strong and stable with my xbox 360 streaming media via the ethernet connection.
Cons: The advertising is misleading. The total throughput is 300Mbps per radio; this equates to 150Mbps for the root AP connection and 150Mbps to the clients. According to the built-in status page I am connected to my root AP at 144Mbps which is not that bad considering all things.
The other issue is related in the fact I can not disable the extended network. This unit is for the devices in my media center that do not have native WiFi. If I was able to disable the extended wifi network and re-purpose the antenna for root AP use I could have achieved closer to 300Mbps (I was able to do this with the Netgear I had). As it stands I have an SSID labeled "necessaryevil".
The unit reports there is no internet connectivity because it's on-board DNS test has failed. Though I did set a static IP there are no DNS options available. Thankfully this is just a status test and does not hamper functionality.
Overall Review: All of my Cons can be addressed in a firmware update (at the time of this writing I am using 3.14.8 Build 141203 Rel.55495n) so I will continue using this instead of the faster Netgear. I really like the AC pass through which make more sense behind the media center.
Pros: I had already written this review, but the session timed out and cleared what I wrote (I normally write these in a text editor and then paste it into the site). So I will be hitting the highlights.
-Very reliable over the last three weeks on a Windows 10 system.
-Installation was not bad, but could be improved. The average Joe will not have problems
-It's size is welcoming.
-Official Linux Drivers are available on their site, though they don't advertise it on the box (see cons)
Cons: The Linux drivers are available if your willing to configure the wifi via the CLI. Sadly I have to jump from one AP to another so this was not something I was willing to do with my home computer via the CLI (Fedora/CentOS as work, Ubuntu at home because I'm lazy). So I decided to install the adapter on my wife's workstation.
Currently there is no plug-n-play for Windows 10. I had to download the drivers from TP-Link, and avoiding any app they may want me to install, used Device Manager to install said drivers. Windows 10 then was able to connect without issue.
The only other problem I have is that the LED is too bright. Granted it is green so it doesn't bother people too much in a dark room (ie bedroom), but it is still noticeable. Indicator lights for consumer electronics should only be noticeable if you are looking straight at it.
Overall Review: If you are only running wireless N (I have a TP-Link N900 router) then you will only achieve 150Mbps as specified on the box.
On Windows I should be able to plug in a new device and obtain basic functionality, not having to install drivers manually was supposed to have been the trade-off for loss of privacy and freedom on the platform.
On Linux I should be able to install the drivers of my choice and use the GUI controls (because we aren't installing wifi on servers). That being said TP-Link does not advertise their Linux drivers because they are not fully fleshed out.
All together I would buy more if needed. Not a bad adapter.
Pros: Lightweight, thin, runs cool, performs well.
My son loves his ancient Sony laptop and refuses to get a new computer. The biggest bottle necks being the CPU and HDD there is not a lot that can be done to improve performance. That being said boot times were slow and shutdowns took forever.
Installing the SSD was as expected (normal 2.5" installation). Linux Mint installed with no problems. Though boot times are better they are hampered by the slow CPU. Shutdown times are much better with only the occasional hiccup caused by the CPU.
Cons: None, it runs and there have not been any errors.
Overall Review: I would recommend this drive.
Pros: At first I was a little confused by why the box was advertising that the capacitors are able to maintain high temperatures as you generally don't want your PSU overheating. But upon further inspection I come to find out that the cooling fan will not engage until you start pulling ~300w of power. This was a huge bonus as my PC is near silent already. In fact I don't think the fan has ever turned on since installation.
Though the PSU is made for high-end GPUs / CPUs, if you are building a workstation that can consume a lot of power but want it to make as little noise as possible this is the PSU to get.
Speaking of installation, it's a PSU and there is nothing special about it. A black holding bag comes with it to hold all your unused cables, which in my case was almost all of them. Modular cables are awesome! The only thing to keep in mind when installing the unit is that it is much longer than most other PSUs I have used.
So if you are using a mid-tower keep this in mind, and don't even try to install this in a micro or mini case!
Cons: The only con would be the strong smell of chemicals when opening the box. But not worth taking an egg away for.
Overall Review: Best PSU I have ever used! Well worth it!
Pros: Where do I start? The build quality is superb; the hoses are thick and solid giving the feeling that a leak is not likely. The pump is silent, looks good, and gets the job done. The radiator is a monster, and even though it is held in place by tiny screws it does not flex or bend.
Installation was easy enough with well written documentation.
The system I am testing with runs a low end Celeron G1820 and was in need of a new cooling solution. The environment it runs in requires silence and the stock fan was starting to wear out. Originally the CPU and motherboard were housed in a MicroITX case; I had planned out a way to rig up the case to accept the behemoth cooler, sadly the hefty hoses would not bend enough to clear the PSU. So in order to properly test the cooler I moved everything into a Cooler Master Storm Trooper. It made me laugh to see the MicroITX motherboard be dwarfed behind the radiator.
I installed the cooler using a single fan in a pull configuration. This was to decrease the possible amount of noise the system produces, and to make it easier to clean the radiator down the road. The only benefit I would get from installing the fans in a push pull config would be more pressure to push through the very thick radiator. Considering I am running a dual core Celeron I figured the radiator by itself may be enough to keep things cool so one fan would suffice.
My idle temps were in line with room temperature and would drop down to ~25c. Under load I could not get it to jump above ~43c, with an average of ~35c while multitasking. Running three instances of burnP6, listening to Pandora, and writing this review the CPU maintained it's cool and there was no noise coming from the cooler in between songs.
The LED lighting is subtle and acceptable.
Cons: All my cons revolve around the solid construction. The hoses are extremely thick and unyielding, just as they should be for the volume of fluid it moves. All in all, I am very pleased.
The only real con is that it does not look like they support Debian (Ubuntu / Linux Mint) or RHEL OS for their controller software. But considering I have no desire to change the colors I'm OK with it.
Overall Review: Corsair has done a great job with this cooler, very pleased to be running it.
Pros: The TP-Link Archer CR700 is a nifty piece of equipment. The cable modem boasts DOCSIS 3.0 and dual band capabilities that can hit up to 1300Mbps. Installation is really simple especially if you already have Comcast/Xfinity internet service. Just connect it, open a browser and enter your Comcast/Xfinity account info and it's connected. The router had dual usb 3.0 slots for network storage and printing.
Cons: There are a couple of points that take away from this wonderful device. While there are settings for the firewall as low, medium and high, there is not an option to edit or create specific rules. While most households probably won't find this an issue, I found that it was a bit of a take away.
The other problem I ran into was a lack of advanced DHCP options that got in the way of configuring my PFSense router.
Overall Review: All in all, this is a very solid and functional device. I give it 4 out of 5 and recommend this product for any household needing a reliable cable modem/router.
Pros: I have had bad experiences with range extenders. My motto is "If you need better signal, either get a better AP or wire a second one". Though this is the best practice, I have to say the Linksys range extender is not as bad as I thought.
For one thing it is very well built. Solid construction goes a long way when your going to plug it into an outlet along a walk way where kids will inevitably bump into it.
Setup is simple for people who don't know anything about the technology. But if you happen to have a good understanding then look at the Cons.
The extender connected to my TP-Link router, then created a new SSID repeating the signal. I was able to get full bars in all parts of my house. Granted I don't need an extender with my current router, that being said I was able to turn this into a wireless bridge by disabling SSID broadcasting (to reduce the number of SSIDs that show up on devices) and making a really long random password. Any device plugged into the ethernet port will be bridged into my LAN.
Cons: As a major nerd, and Network Engineer, I like to have flexibility in my devices. For starters; I did not want to use the built-in wizard, instead opting for the main configuration page. It took longer than I would have liked to find the page, since I had to guess as to what Linksys web developers named it.
There is no supported bridge mode that I can find. The Netgear extenders I have reviewed don't have the option built in either, but they do allow you to manually modify the settings to get the same result.
There does not appear to be a way to modify the device to be an AP. I don't understand why Linksys would make such a well built product, then limit it's software. I will be looking to modify the firmware in the future to get better functionality out of it.
Overall Review: It works as a range extender, but that's it. Granted it is only advertised as such but I expect more functionality and better fine controls for experts.
Pros: So here's the deal; I hate wireless repeaters. Can't stand the things as they usually cause more problems than they solve. As a network engineer I recommend either buying a better access point or running a network cable and adding a second AP.
That being said I was VERY surprised with this unit. Setup was easy and simple, the internal antennas performed much better than I thought they would, it repeated the signal with the same SSID as the main AP. Even more surprising is I used the wizard as it covered all the features I wanted. Good job TP-Link!
Starting out I placed the unit in the kitchen next to the wet wall (the wall that has all the water pipes running in it). This area of the house has always been a dead spot. Very little signal in the kitchen, the deck, or the adjacent bathroom. After installing the repeater, I was able to get full bars in all these places and stream HD video with no stuttering.
I was so amazed that I was about to say this was the first repeater I would recommend...but then the problems started
Cons: It kills my router.
I kid you not, my TP-Link TP-WD4300 router dies after having the repeater on for while. All of a sudden my family will report connectivity problems and then no connection. Upon further inspection I find my devices are pulling IPs from the repeater's DHCP server and the repeater reports no signal. The only way to fix this was to unplug the repeater and reboot the router.
Of course the first thing was to upgrade the firmware in the TL-WD4300 router and the repeater. Sadly this did not fix the problem as I was still forced to reboot the router to get things running again. If I leave the repeater unplugged and powered off there are no problems.
What makes things worse is that there is no RJ-45 jack, so I can't even turn it into a wireless bridge.
Overall Review: If you need better signal than what your home router is providing, go buy an enterprise grade AP. Repeaters are NOT the answer
Pros: So here is the deal; I am an incredibly busy network engineer that needs products to install easily and work at their stated specifications. I have also worked with these before in customer deployments, but never actually owned or purchased one myself.
As for installation; it was easy enough with having to download the drivers (I don't use CDs anymore) and point Windows at them. I never install vendor software as it is very much un-needed, but it might help in this case
After install it connected to my access point, a TP-Link AC router, and the computer was online. The signal was extremely strong and performance was consistent. I had almost no drops in signal or performance when syncing large amounts of files or streaming media.
Cons: First off, this device is advertising up to 600Mbps connections over USB2.0. The USB2.0 specification maxes out at 480Mbps which causes me to question TP-Link''s ability to do math. Actually I can imagine the engineers made the mistake of telling the marketing guys that the chip can do up to 600Mbps. Essentially I have lost respect for TP-Link for treating me like an idiot. I look poorly on such marketing.
Second, I could only get 150Mbps even though my TP-Link access point is capable of the full 600Mbps dual-band connection. No matter what I did with the settings it would not connect to the 5GHZ signal. This is where I think installing their software might have helped, but again I refuse to participate in closing open platforms.
Overall Review: This is a solid performing adapter. Backups and streaming run very smooth with almost no drops in performance. Just wish I could have gotten 5GHZ to work.
Pros: Their round, you can burn little dots on them with lasers, then a computer can reproduce sound by interpreting the dots with more lasers.
Cons: I can see my reflection when looking at the shiny side.
Overall Review: Lasers are cool.
Pros: It allows me to write to SD cards that are used for our small deployment of Raspberry Pi. It gets the job done and works with CentOS 7, Fedora 22, and Debian 8.
Cons: It's a little on the big side, but for the price I'm ok with it.
Pros: A workstation used for AV was having sound problems. I replaced the motherboard, RAM, and the sound card. Sadly none of this made any difference.
That being said the sound card works really well and sounds awesome! When we build a new system this sound card is going with it. The software has a feature to isolate spoken word and amplify it over other sounds. This worked better than I thought.
Cons: It didn't solve my unsolvable audio problem, but that is another story all -together.
Pros: Was having a problem with a workstation (a problem that no one can figure out). I was hoping the memory was the issue, but this memory did not fix my problem.
Granted this memory does work as you would expect. Passed all testing.
Cons: Did not solve my problem, but did tell me the problem was not the memory.
Overall Review: Decided to keep it since it is a good brand, and DDR2 costs will continue to rise.
Pros: They are cheap paper CD sleeves, they work as they should.
Cons: They laughed at me when I dropped my pen.
Pros: My NAS system was having some issues and I needed to offload the data. This connected to my workstation using the eSATA port, which made moving 3TB of data go by much quicker than USB 2.0 (no 3.0 ports in the house yet).
After the transfer was done, I built a new FreeNAS system that supported eSATA and USB 3.0, which allowed me to run the drive with the other two internal drives in RAIDZ. The performance is as expected and the drive runs cool.
Cons: It's silver, and my NAS is black.
Overall Review: Planning on purchasing the USB 3.0 version when I need more space. Possibly buying one for the office as well.
Pros: I had previously ordered a couple 32GB models as FreeBSD boot drives (think PFSense and FreeNAS). I was so impressed that I decided to purchase five of the 8GB model as ISO boot drives (installing an OS, etc) for my new job.
Extremely happy with the reliability and performance, even over USB 2.0. Over the last two months I have written over then several times, and sometimes had to shred them, and have not run into any bad sectors.
Cons: Ordered five, one of them was corrupt. The volume label was UDATA (should be ADATA) with random characters that my system could not translate. Tried reformatting and all the normal troubleshooting steps, but could not get the drive to function properly with I/O errors.
Contacted ADATA support, and they wanted my to pay for shipping back. Obviously it was cheaper just to buy a another one. Sandisk has been the only manufacture I have dealt with that will send me a new drive without question (granted I did show them that I am an experience sys admin, that helps).
Overall Review: Found that I was using these as CloneZilla drives. Obviously 8GB is not a lot for moving around system images. Will order some more 8GB and larger 32GB drives for imaging until I get our imaging server up and running.
Pros: I work in a contract call center, we use a lot of PoE IP phones which has given me a lot of opportunity to test this switch.
Currently it sits on my desk at work, powering my phone and providing network connectivity to a number of test servers I run. I also use it to test the IP phones we use which has been a huge plus. There have been no power issues and no drops on connectivity over the last several months of testing.
The all metal design is appreciated and having PoE readily available in a small package on my desk beats having to pull out an injector or hookup a noisy 24 port switch.
Cons: My only con is that this only runs fast ethernet. Would have been nice to have gigabit connectivity.
Overall Review: If you want a stable PoE switch for your office, this would be the one to get.
Pros: If your looking for a snappy responsive wireless router, this fits the bill. After programming my network settings all my devices connected with no problem.
Over the last few weeks there have been no instances of dropped connections, no problems with stuttering while streaming video from my NAS, and there have been no instances of general network problems.
When I first received the unit for testing, I was hired for a new position that required all my attention. This caused me to completely forget I even had the router. At first I was miffed that I would forget to review something, but then I realized that it ran so reliably that I was ABLE to forget it was in the house!
One thing that really stands out is the USB options. Most routers will give you two USB ports with one dedicated to printers. On this unit you can plug in two different drives. For example; I have an old 186GB HDD and a 128MB flash drive plugged in and I can access both.
Transfer rates to attached storage are very stable, and play back of media is flawless. I am impressed!
Cons: Very few cons. The first is aesthetics as the interface is annoyingly old fashioned. That being said it is one of the MOST responsive web interfaces around. So I will not deduct any points due to the performance.
The LEDs on the front blink A LOT. For us network guys this is normal and OK for the wiring closet. However, most people will find it annoying.
The only real con I can think of is the fact that firmware upgrades wipe out your settings. In my home network, I have a gateway, firewall, and DHCP services as separate devices. This makes it a bigger deal than it should be to change all the settings to play nice with my network. So I do not like having my settings wiped with a firmware upgrade.
Overall Review: With all that being said, I think I will keep using this router as my primary AP. It has proven to be extremely reliable with no issues over weeks of use. My Buffalo router will be re-used elsewhere. Good job TP-Link
Pros: I have never gave much thought to my mousepad before. Its a simple device for preventing scratches on the mouse and the surface it rubs on.
After receiving the MM200 I have found a new appreciation for a good mouse pad. The first thing I noticed was the material it is made of. Soft to the touch and and feels really really good (I'm sensitive to physical stimulation).
The other surprise was how thin it is, as this blends into the desk better than it's thicker counterpart. Obviously the reason it can be thin is because of it's surface area, which leads me to my next pro.
I was shipped the Standard Edition 360x300x2. It covers about 40% of my keyboard/mouse tray which makes it blend into the desk even more. It allows for the keyboard to be half on and half off with one wrist on the material. I might end up buying a second unit just to cover the tray enough that both wrists are resting on them. I can move my keyboard around and have plenty of room for the mouse to move.
Mouse movement has been smooth and effortless. The previous mat I was using had a microfiber covering on it that made things smooth but gave resistance. This mat has minimal resistance while allowing the mouse to stop right where I want it.
All in all I am VERY happy with this unit.
Cons: Two minor cons with packaging.
1. They have sample material on the bottom with a "Touch Me" label. If I was to touch this material before buying, I would have walked away from it. I recommend removing it all together.
2. The inside of the tube stinks really bad. The mat is fine and has no odor, but the tube has that chemical adhesive smell that I can't stand.
Again neither of these effect the product itself, just something to consider.
Overall Review: I'm getting another one!
Pros: Originally I set out to make a video review of the product, but after recording and editing I come to find that NewEgg has suspended video reviews. So this will be a quick run down of my finding.
The unit has really good capacity and reliability. Considering my cell phone has a 7000mah battery, this pack will allow me to fully charge it relatively quickly using the 2.4A port. Taking into account that my battery will last two days without a charge I should be able to be without a wall outlet for up to four days of heavy use.
APC has really good build quality and their products, though costing much more, have a better uptime than their cheaper competitors in the heavy usage arena.
To test the unit, I let my phone die and turn off. The next morning the pack was able to revive the phone and, for the hour drive to work, allowed me to use my bluetooth and pandora streaming.
Sadly the phone only charged to 25% after 6 hours. The problem was with my phone, however, as rebooting caused the charging rate to double.
Cons: The finish scratches REALLY easily. Just taking it out of the package caused a permanent scratch. After realizing this I gently rubbed my finger nails across the front. This caused the guys at work to ask if I had dragged the thing on the ground.
The included cable is really short, could be longer.
The included paper work shows that the unit will not put out more than 2.4A.
Overall Review: You pay a premium for the brand reputation, but it is a bit on the high side at the writing of this review. If price wasn't a factor I would recommend this battery pack.