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Brian M.

Brian M.

Joined on 03/16/06

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Most Favorable Review

Corsair raises the bar

CORSAIR HX Series HX750 CP-9020137-NA 750 W ATX12V v2.4 / EPS12V 2.92 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Full Modular Power Supply
CORSAIR HX Series HX750 CP-9020137-NA 750 W ATX12V v2.4 / EPS12V 2.92 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Full Modular Power Supply

Pros: * Plenty of connectors. Some online spec listings for this PSU are incorrect. It actually has 4 SATA Cables, each with 4 SATA Power connectors, for a total of 16 connectors. It also includes two 4+4 pin CPU power cables, and 4 6+2 PCI-E power connectors. There should be plenty of cables available, however if you plan on running TWO OR MORE HIGH-END video cards each with 3 power connectors, you will not have enough. This is the most cables I have ever seen on a 750W unit. * Cables are easy to bend, and long lengths. I had no issue moving and bending the cables into place, it seemed easier than other units although I didn't notice anything special about the material used in the cabling. Each of the individual cable pieces are attached together with soft plastic. * "ECO Mode" fanless operation at idle and low loads. I spent some time trying to fully load my system (around 400W-450W from the wall) and the fan still didn't spin. The amount of heat this unit can handle passively is incredible. It would take a very high power usage GPU to activate the fan. Even then, it should operate below 1000 RPM which would make it nearly inaudible. I wasn't able to get the fan to spin up aside from boot-up, so I couldn't test the noise. In that respect, the unit is totally silent! * 12V Single Rail vs 5 Rail Mode. A new feature, the first time I've seen it, is the included 12V Rail switch. While in "Multiple" rail mode, each connector has an over-current protection at 40A. While in "Single" rail, each connector has access to full capacity. This is a nice way to both protect your components and also unlock extra power if you need it. This is a great new way for users to customize how their PSU distributes power and I'm glad to see it. * Platinum efficiency.

Cons: * Large size, may not fit in some cases. Be warned, this is a 180mm PSU so it won't fit in all cases. Also, if you're going to mount the PSU with the fan facing down, make sure your case's PSU in-take is large enough to allow space for the fan to breathe. It should be fine in most cases, but this is something you should be aware of before trying to install it. * Connector labeling can be tricky or confusing. Lastly, the connector labels on the PSU itself are a bit sloppy. Generally you can't plug something where it doesn't belong, however it's always a good idea to make sure everything is hooked up properly. Also, do not try to re-use modular cables from other PSUs -- even if they're also made by Corsair, or even the older HX750 or HX750i units -- as that will risk frying the unit. ONLY use the included cables.

Overall Review: As with previous HX-Series units, the OEM supplier for this HX750 Platinum is Channel Well Technology (CWT). This is without a doubt the best PSU I've ever tested, while also being an incredible value. It's not only quiet, but nearly always completely silent. I didn't notice any coil whine or buzzing noises of any kind, installation was a breeze, and it handled everything I threw at it gracefully. With a surplus of connectors and cables, it should be perfect for nearly all builds. And with the Platinum efficiency, it should waste less power and run the full length of the warranty (10 YEARS) and beyond. Great PSU, well done Corsair.

Most Critical Review

Decent router plagued with WiFi issues

Linksys EA3500-NP SMART Smooth Stream Gigabit Dual-Band Wireless N750 Router IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab
Linksys EA3500-NP SMART Smooth Stream Gigabit Dual-Band Wireless N750 Router IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n, IEEE 802.3/3u/3ab

Pros: I decided to use the Wi-Fi setup route on the EA3500 and it went smoothly. Simply access the admin panel, follow through a few options, and it's ready to go. The control panel on the EA3500 is different than others I've seen from Linksys, probably due to Cisco's involvement. It uses a more traditional text-based layout which (I personally feel) is easier to navigate. *Wired* connection worked fine, utilized my bandwidth at full capacity and I didn't experience any stability issues or other problems. All of my desktop PCs and mobile devices (three phones, two tablets) were immediately recognized and connected to the router. Has ONE USB port for external use. No issues streaming up to 1080p videos on my network.

Cons: Literally the worst Wi-Fi capability I have ever seen, which is very disappointing to say the least. Consistent issues maintaining a connection and proper bandwidth even over what I consider to be minimal range. It is incredibly weak compared to my other routers and any average/normal sized home is going to have a problem without extra access points. Hard to cite the exact problem but I speculate it's due to the small antenna on the EA3500 itself. If you plan on using the EA3500 for Wi-Fi extensively, I don't recommend it. Admin panel is missing some other unique features I've grown accustomed to on Linksys routers, namely the monitoring and filtering options (parental controls, for example).

Overall Review: Control panel GUI may be trickier for less advanced users, you have to know exactly what you're looking for and where to find it otherwise you may get lost. Even though some of the newer features are missing, it still has the old classics like DMZ, port filtering, Wireless settings, etc. Anything you need to setup your network is available, however some of the customization features are missing from the outdated panel.

10/25/2016

Still among the best PSUs

CORSAIR RMx Series (2021) RM650x CP-9020198-NA 650 W ATX12V / EPS12V 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Full Modular Power Supply
CORSAIR RMx Series (2021) RM650x CP-9020198-NA 650 W ATX12V / EPS12V 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Full Modular Power Supply

Pros: * An improvement on a great PSU. The RMx 2021 series simply takes the previous models and improves them. The quality of the RM650x is better than previous units across the board. It's not a reboot, or a totally different series of units, it's the next iteration. * Cables aren't rigid. Having handled many PSU's, I know there's a lot of variance in cable quality. The RM650x does use in-capacitor cables. The cables themselves, however, have the appropriate amount of flex. You won't have to worry about breaking your hands to bend these cables in your case. * Fan rarely ever spins up. Corsair has famously advertised their fine-tuned fan curve for the RMx series. It's very noticable when you compare the RM650x with other similar units. Even when gaming on an 8700K and 1080 Ti, it took 15+ minutes before the fan even turned on. It spins around 500-700 RPM at most times, making it barely noticable. * Among the best customer service in the industry. I've dealt with Corsair's CS multiple times over the years. I always get responses within a few hours, and shipping turnaround time is only a few days. They're based in the United States, so you don't have to deal with an outsourced CS department. Always appreciate when a company treats their customers right.

Cons: * Inferior magnetic (ML) fan. Corsair has replaced the Rifle bearing fans in the RMx 2021 series with their Magnetic bearings. They work just fine in these PSUs, but they increase noise output significantly. As a result, the 2021 series are much louder than the previous years' models. It's worth mentioning the RM650x is still an incredibly quiet unit. * Single 4+4 pin EPS (CPU) power cable. This isn't a large complaint, but with so many motherboards using 8+4 or even 8+8 power these days, the extra cable would've been nice, since the RM650x can definitely handle the increased load. Those motherboards will run with a single connector, so it's not totally necessary. * No ECO/Mode switch. This has been a common complaint since the RMx's inception many years ago. This series does not have a toggle button on the back of the PSU for the fanless/ECO mode, which turns the fan off at low loads. Typically PSU manufacturers will put a switch to allow the fan to run at normal speeds at all times.

Overall Review: I've owned and reviewed dozens of PSU models over the years, and I can sincerely say the RMx series are among the best ever made. They are Tier A (Gold ranked) in all existing PSU tiers for a reason. Please DO NOT confuse these units with the regular "RM" series as they are totally different PSUs, and quite inferior. The OEM for this unit, and all RMx units over the years, is Channel Well Technology. The differences between the three (yes THREE) different series of RMx units is so small, I suggest buying the cheapest one you can find. The RM650x (2021) is superior almost completely across the board in hold-up time, stability, ripple suppression, and voltage control.

Excellent choice for a 550W Bronze PSU

CORSAIR CX-M Series CX550M 550 W ATX 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Semi-Modular Power Supply
CORSAIR CX-M Series CX550M 550 W ATX 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Semi-Modular Power Supply

Pros: * Plenty of cables. The CX550M comes with dual 8-pin PCI-E cables as well as 6 SATA connectors. Frankly these are more cables than a 550W unit can realistically handle. Any video card that uses 2x8-pin PCI-E cables is probably not going to run on this. But still it's great Corsair included so many optional cables on a modest PSU. * Fairly silent. I've heard mixed reviews about the fans used in Corsair's new 2021/2022 PSU models however I had a great experience with this one. It seemed a bit quieter than my other 550W Bronze units. While the fan was noticable if I put my ear next to the PSU under load, at idle it was totally silent and at no point did I find the noise intrusive. * Sleek new design and layout for these models. I actually own a few of the old CX series PSU's and the new frame is noticably sturdier. It doesn't feel as flimsy or loose as the previous models, the new triangle-grill design looks great, and overall the new design is much easier to handle. I'm impressed that a value PSU has such a great design on it, this isn't something you see very often. * 140mm length. The CX550M is really small. Obviously it's not SFF and probably won't fit in SFF cases, but at 140mm it's actually smaller than the typical ATX spec. If you have a smaller case, or don't have a lot of space to work with, this is a great unit.

Cons: * Rigid Cables. This actually doesn't impact my build since I use a very spacious case with plenty of routing area. But the cables for the CX550M are notably stiff, and require a lot of force to bend and twist. Having worked with many different PSU's before, this issue is nothing new, but the CX550M definitely doesn't have the most flexible cables I've ever experienced.

Overall Review: Overall the CX550M is a great value for a 550W Bronze unit. I did all my testing on my existing build with an 8700K CPU and GTX 1060 GPU and it performed flawlessly. If you're looking for a modern, stylish 550W Bronze unit this is a great choice. I've also dealt with Corsair's customer service over the years and they have some of the best CS in the industry, you can't go wrong here. Worth mentioning since I don't see it anywhere on the Newegg page, the CX550M has a 5 year warranty.

Solid claw grip RGB mouse.

CORSAIR SABRE RGB PRO WIRELESS CHAMPION SERIES, Ultra-lightweight FPS/MOBA Wireless Gaming Mouse, Black
CORSAIR SABRE RGB PRO WIRELESS CHAMPION SERIES, Ultra-lightweight FPS/MOBA Wireless Gaming Mouse, Black

Pros: * Excellent compatibility: RF, Bluetooth, Wired I prefer to used wired mouse for increased responsiveness, however in testing the bluetooth mode I didn't notice a difference. It's been a while since I've used a wireless mouse, it was a pleasant surprise. Overall plenty of ways to use it, however you see fit. * Easy to use Corsair iCUE. I've used iCUE many times before and it's always been pretty good. The mouse doesn't have extensive RGB options so it's very easy to control. Buttons can be remapped, lighting profiles, it's all pretty standard. I guess in that regard Corsair is hitting the mark. * Excellent battery life. I'm not even sure how long the battery lasts. I used it for 2 days without charging before I finally plugged it in. Even then, you can use the mouse in wired mode if you have battery issues. Although I doubt anyone would game consistently for several days straight! * Absurdly high 26,000+ DPI. I'm not the type of person to be picky about these things, nor am I a hyper-competitive gamer. I will say this is probably the smoothest mouse I've ever used, I'm sure the DPI plays a part in that.

Cons: * Limited RGB The RGB only applies to the single logo at the bottom edge of the mouse, where your hand sits. So I guess if you want to illuminate the area just above your palm it works great. Otherwise, I you can see it easily when not using the mouse! So it looks pretty when idling. Pretty disappointing.

Overall Review: * Great for claw grip. I can't judge this mouse for other grips but it should be no surprise it works great for claw, just by looking at it. It uses a small, compact, lightweight design which is perfect for gently gripping with your fingers. If you have big hands, or palm grip, you may want to avoid this. Your hand will probably drape over the edges. * It's light and there are no weights. This is neither a pro nor a con, but be aware. You may prefer weighty mice and not even realize it. The Corsair Sabre Pro is like a feather. It feels like I could blow on it, and knock it sideways. Just kidding. If you're looking for a no frills, basic RGB mouse, for claw grip, this is a good choice. I didn't find any issues with the mouse worth complaining about. Everything worked great, from the feel of the mouse, the buttons themselves, the software, the RGB, and the connectivity features. It does its job well.

10/29/2021

A basic extender, but it gets the job done.

Rosewill Wireless HDMI 4K Extender Video & Audio Transmitter & Receiver | Supports 1080P@60Hz and 4K@30Hz with 60ft Range | Works with PC, Video Game Consoles, Streaming Devices, More (RCHE-20002)
Rosewill Wireless HDMI 4K Extender Video & Audio Transmitter & Receiver | Supports 1080P@60Hz and 4K@30Hz with 60ft Range | Works with PC, Video Game Consoles, Streaming Devices, More (RCHE-20002)

Pros: * Solid build.I've used many video extenders in the past and they usually feel small, cheap, and plasticky but the Rosewill 4K Extender uses solid construction, it doesn't slide or wobble when placed on a surface, and it feels weighty enough to stay in place. For a product like this one I was impressed at how well put together it was.* Easy to use and convenient button layout.It's nice to have an extender that isn't just a dongle hanging out of the TV. The ports being lined up along the side make them much easier to see and access, and it helps keep everything organized. Definitely the best design for an extender that I've ever seen. I'm surprised that it seems so difficult for companies to get it right.* Simple setup.Connect the HDMI cables, power both on, and wait for them to pair. It only took a few seconds and required basically no effort. I do like how the transmitter and receiver were automatically paired, I fully expected to have to go through an annoying sync process.

Cons: * No included HDMI cable.For this price I would expect to see one, especially on a device like this that needs them. Probably not standard for most extenders but it feels like they should be here.* Signal is easily degraded by obstructions.Doors, walls, inanimate objects in your room. Pretty much any physical object between the transmitter/receiver will most likely create a problem. The ideal setup for this extender is basically a single room with nothing blocking the two. I imagine this is mostly useful in situations where you can't run a cable, but you also don't need to stretch the signal very far. I wonder if putting an antenna on the boxes would've helped at all?

Overall Review: The extender does seem to work fine over the 60 foot range, tested on a PC streaming to a 4K 30 Hz TV. Walls and other objects negatively impact the signal, I'm not sure how viable it would be between rooms. However as long as you keep the physical distance short, it should work. But it won't work at the full 60 feet with a wall between the two. I didn't notice the transmitter or receiver running hot, they were warm to the touch, but that seems to be the same for most electronics.For my use case the Rosewill 4K Extender seems to do the job just fine, although I think it may be overkill for most people due to its limitations. Most people won't need anything this fancy to simply stream video nearby, or within the room itself, when there are more accessible options which work just as well. I would have preferred a stronger signal quality, something that could at least work across rooms, and more port options to give the Rosewill extender more use-cases.Overall as long as the extender suits your environment, it works fine. Just make sure your setup can support this extender with its limited application. I'm scoring the Rosewill 4K Extender 3 Eggs simply because that's what it is: Average. When it works, it works fine. It's easy to setup and it does the job. But it's lacking in many key areas, missing some bonus features, and offers lackluster performance overall.