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Joshua M.

Joshua M.

Joined on 04/19/05

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Most Favorable Review

Decent Entry Level Keyboard

Corsair Gaming K55 RGB Keyboard, Backlit RGB LED
Corsair Gaming K55 RGB Keyboard, Backlit RGB LED

Pros: This keyboard has some very nice features for its price point. It has 3 zones of selectable back-lighting / illumination. The keys, while not mechanical, all feel very uniform and consistent to type on. The wrist rest is detachable and works well. The media keys, volume control, and macro keys are all nice to have, especially the volume control and macro keys. Also the windows key lockout is a feature I have been in love with on this keyboard and others I have tested, it's a real lifesaver when you are gaming, especially with keyboard intensive games.

Cons: Before I go into the cons section let me note I have tested Corsair's K70 keyboards and some of my notes here are more about comparing it to something that does cost more at the end of the day. This keyboard while nice does have a bit of a cheaper feel compared to other Corsair keyboards I have tested. The switches are not mechanical, and the whole keyboard is plastic. The lighting is in zones and is not per key. The wrist rest is a lot cheaper compared to the wrist rests that come with other Corsair keyboards.

Overall Review: While I had some things to put in cons, it's because I have tested higher end Corsair keyboards, the K55 here is not a bad keyboard at all, in fact I was rather impressed with it once I got it and started using it, the simple fact that, for a non-mechanical keyboard, the key presses felt very uniform was enough to let me know that this unit was built for quality at an entry level price. While I would like to see more options with the lighting I do realize this is not a K70 and does not carry a K70 price tag. Overall my experience with the keyboard so far has been good. I would recommend this to anyone who wants a nice keyboard but doesn't want to spend $$$ on a mechanical unit. It's geared to be an entry gaming / power user keyboard with the lighting, macro keys and extra functions. I am impressed.

Most Critical Review

Simple Router

BELKIN F9K1116 AC 750 DB Wi-Fi Dual-Band AC+ Router IEEE 802.11ac, IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
BELKIN F9K1116 AC 750 DB Wi-Fi Dual-Band AC+ Router IEEE 802.11ac, IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n

Pros: This is a very simple little router. Sleek styling with very non-invasive status lights. Unit supports media streaming from a USB port, which is a nice feature for a basic router. The USB storage feature actually works pretty well once you get past setting it up. The interface on the unit's dashboard is fairly thorough. The firewall features are easy to understand for a standard user. The unit appears to have been very stable so far, testing for about 3 weeks. The unit comes with a small card on the bottom that contains the unit's default password and some other information. Setup was easy and painless. Some of the included apps may seem useful to some users. The unit has a guest network option that can be used out of the box.

Cons: The unit feels a bit cheap. The ports on the unit are 10/100 not gigabit, so if you have a small network with modern computers and the internal switch on this unit is your backbone it will bottleneck your network. There could use to be some more status lights on the unit ( mostly for the network ports ). There is no option to lay the unit flat, it has to stand on the permanently affixed pedestal. The Ethernet jacks on the back of the unit re-inforce the budget construction factor by only including 4 of the 8 pins found in a normal rj-45 jack ( yes it works because you only need 4, but it seems more like it's an unnecessary cut corner ). The Ethernet cord the unit comes with is as cheap as the ports on the back of the unit. There could be more DDNS provider options, or the option to choose your own. Some things are hard to configure, such as the usb mass storage device when the unit is in AP mode. The wireless connection could be a bit stronger, it's fairly average and for most that is ok, though others may find it to be lack-luster and annoying.

Overall Review: I was a bit more critical of this unit, because I normally enjoy Belkin products, but this one made me feel a bit luke-warm. The lack of gigabit and cheap construction is a real turnoff for me, especially with a unit claims 300 / 433 mbps data rates. Some other reviewers knocked the unit for not having USB 3.0, however, unless the unit has a gigabit connection, there is no point in having USB 3.0 given USB 2.0 can move data at 480mbps which is FASTER than any interface on the unit. This unit is a good little starter router for someone who is looking for something that is easy to setup and just works, however a power user might find the unit rather disappointing.

10/28/2015

Very Fast, PS5 Compatible SSD

Corsair MP600 PRO LPX M.2 2280 1TB PCI-Express 4.0 x4, NVMe 1.4 3D Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) CSSD-F1000GBMP600PLP, Optimized for PS5
Corsair MP600 PRO LPX M.2 2280 1TB PCI-Express 4.0 x4, NVMe 1.4 3D Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) CSSD-F1000GBMP600PLP, Optimized for PS5

Pros: This SSD comes in a simple box with a lot of padding. Over all it feels and looks well built. It has a lower profile for the heatsink (vs the non LPX version) to make if compatible with the PS5 in which it fits perfectly. It also lends itself to fitting decently into a gaming PC as well. For the PS5 the SSD tested at speeds of 6529.698MB/s read (as pictured ), copying 107.9GB to this drive from console storage took about 1 minute and 14 seconds. Games running on this SSD loaded and ran fas, all on par with the internal storage. For gaming PC performance this drive tested at speeds of 7387.92MB/s Read and 5881.53MB/s write with Crystal Disk Mark and 6.96GB/s read and 5.46GB/s write under ATTO, having picked the peak speeds from a series of benchmarks. PC gaming performance is good with this SSD. The heat sink on this unit is held on with screws (and is removable), its a nice touch if you wanted to use it with a different heat sink such as the ones that come with many modern motherboards. Corsair does appear to have a removal guide for the heatsink on their website and it does appear to state that removing it does not void your warranty as long as you do not damage the components.

Cons: In a gaming PC the heatsink may get in the way on some boards, but its pretty low profile and didnt cause me any issues, but to use a heatsink that comes with a motherboard youd want to remove it. The drive did seem to run a bit faster in gaming PC testing when there was a bit more airflow going over it, this is where you might want the full size version of this unit vs the LPX version since it has a larger heatsink. Remembering that while this model is geared towards the PS5 there is nothing stopping you from using it in a gaming PC. Not really a con, but the drive does appear to have more performance than the PS5 can make use of, but again, not really a con at all.

Overall Review: For this review I tested this SSD in both a PS5 and a Gaming PC as seen in my pictures. Load times on the PS5 were very good when testing with a modern game (Gran Turismo 7). For PC use I tested the drive on a Gigabyte X570 AORUS Elite board with an AMD 5900X CPU, I did notice that using the lower M.2 slot I was seeing slower, but still respectable, speeds. From what I have seen in my testing is this drive has more speed than the PS5 can make use of, but with that being said, that means going to run well, and this units specific target is the PS5 and it does not disappoint. In PC testing the drive actually went a bit beyond the stated speeds on the box in when testing with Crystal Disk Mark, so that is also respectable. Overall a very speedy SSD, and with a 5 year warranty I would recommend this SSD for both PS5 and PC users alike.

Solid Memory with RGB

CORSAIR Vengeance RGB RT 16GB (2 x 8GB) 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM DDR4 3200 (PC4 25600) AMD Optimized Desktop Memory Model CMN16GX4M2Z3200C16W
CORSAIR Vengeance RGB RT 16GB (2 x 8GB) 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM DDR4 3200 (PC4 25600) AMD Optimized Desktop Memory Model CMN16GX4M2Z3200C16W

Pros: Good memory timings and stable operation. Installed easily and worked properly with a modern high performance AMD based system. This memory ran at rated speeds and timings once I configured the XMP Profile (or DOCP on some AMD motherboards). Corsair iCue interface for RGB lighting, software is fairly easy to use to do basic effects or layer effects for very unique lighting. The lighting is also vibrant ( see photos ) and the transitions and animations are consistent and smooth. I had no troubles installing the memory, configuring it, and customizing the lighting. The lifetime warranty on this memory is also a major plus.

Cons: This memory does stand a bit higher than the kit I had in my rig prior to testing, it should be fine but do watch which coolers you install if the fan overhangs the memory, but why would you want to block the lighting anyways? I do not have any other cons to list for this memory kit.

Overall Review: I tested this memory for just over a week in my gaming machine. It was solid during long gaming sessions and doing some video editing. I put it through its paces and was very happy with the stability and performance I saw out of it. I am as always happy to see the lifetime warranty on the product, I have rarely had to deal with sending a product back to Corsair, but when I have, they have been easy to work with and I am consistently happy with them and their products. Test machine specs: AMD Ryzen 5900X Gigabyte Aorus X570 Pro Gigabyte Aorus 3070Ti Corsair 1000 Watt PSU Corsair H115i AiO Samsung 980 Pro NVME 1TB Boot Drive Samsung 970 NVME 2TB Storage Drive Windows 10 Pro 64-bit

10/20/2021

Decent Feature Rich Bluetooth Speaker

Rosewill Portable Speaker with built-in Power Bank, IPX4 rated Water-Resistant, Play Music via Bluetooth, AUX, MicroSD, FM Radio, Up to 30 Hours Playback, Includes Bike Mount and Carabiner - RW-SF5
Rosewill Portable Speaker with built-in Power Bank, IPX4 rated Water-Resistant, Play Music via Bluetooth, AUX, MicroSD, FM Radio, Up to 30 Hours Playback, Includes Bike Mount and Carabiner - RW-SF5

Pros: This feature packed speaker came well packaged in a nice box. It comes with multiple accessories and cords, notably a holder to mount to a bike and a wired remote control. The bike holder it came with has multiple ways to secure it having both screw holes or some rather hefty cable ties, along with a rubber foot to keep it from moving around in the case of using said cable ties. It is also supplied with a simple carabiner to attach it a backpack or something similar, the mount on the speaker for it to attach does appear to be metal so it should last for quite a while. Setup and pairing of the Bluetooth to my phone was quick and straight forward. The AUX cable was easy to use as well. It also has an FM radio function and a micro TF / SD card slot to store music on the device and have it play stand alone. The sound quality was decent for its size. The unit can also function as a battery pack and I was able to use it to charge my iPhone SE 2nd gen multiple times before the unit needed a recharge. The remote has a MIC and a horn button that sounds like a car horn, which plays at a pretty decent volume, it startled me a little the first time I pressed it. At a medium volume I was able to get 20 hours of playtime out of the unit. It is a very feature rich unit for the price tag.

Cons: The sound on this unit is sometimes a bit muddy, especially in FM mode when the signal is weak, and with using it to take a voice call, but otherwise the sound for its size and price point was decent. Bass could be a bit stronger as well, at higher volume it did seem to get a bit tinny. The horn button on the iFree remote takes a moment to play, I wish it did not have the delay. The unit is a bit big to hang off a backpack or belt, but the included clip and attachment point seem up to the task. The AUX cable takes up the power in usb port, so you cannot charge the unit while using the AUX cable. The iFree remote uses the 3.5mm jack which I feel could confuse some people. Volume control with my iPhone in Bluetooth mode would sometimes start at a high volume when connecting. While the FM tuner is a nice feature, tuning it without a display and having to use auto search is a bit clunky. Transfers using the data cable to the SD / TF card are a bit slow, it was faster just to copy files to the card with a reader and then put it into the unit. That being said, the unit does not seem to play M4A/AAC files so if you are using iTunes, you will need to convert files before loading them. Nothing bad enough to knock an egg off for at this price point.

Overall Review: I tested this unit for almost 3 weeks. When testing battery capacity I was able to use 4500 mAh worth of power through a USB load and tester having the load set at 500mA. I got 20 hours of playtime out of the unit, which on the website, matches the specs, though the manual states that you should get 30 hours out of it. I would hope they fix the mis-match in specs between the manual and the website. If there was one feature I could ask for on the unit, it would be a small LCD display that tells you what station the FM radio is tuned to, what the battery life is, what mode the unit is in, and what track is playing from the TF / SD card. I also found the port / cable arrangement a little weird, but everything functioned as intended, I would just like to see some of it be a little more straight forward and intuitive since the AUX cable for example, is not a standard cable, so if you break it, hopefully they will provide a replacement. Overall I recommend this unit, for its price point it feels well built, has a lot of features, and the sound quality is decent as well.

Absolute Monster of a Case

ENYO, a Goliath Chassis of the Open Frame / Benching Case, is designed  to fulfil the biggest dream of any high end enthusiast in terms of Water Cooling or Air Cooling with the most powerful component
ENYO, a Goliath Chassis of the Open Frame / Benching Case, is designed to fulfil the biggest dream of any high end enthusiast in terms of Water Cooling or Air Cooling with the most powerful component

Pros: This case is an absolute monster, and it is ready for a massive water cooling setup. I also see many possibilities for modding. The case was fairly easy to assemble. The case seems rather sturdy. It has a ton of space, it should be able to fit even some of the larger ATX style server motherboards, the specs state it will house an EE-ATX form factor board. It has 4 3.5” and 4 2.5” drives bays which I am rather happy with. The case appears to have space for 4 or 5 large radiators and a massive number of fan mounts to support any cooling need. There is space for 2 power supplies. There are plenty of cutouts and space to run cables and water cooling plumbing. The gaps around the glass panels look to be wide enough to allow enough air in for cooling, I could even see making easy mods with some extra hardware to adjust them and make them wider if needed. Branding on the case is simple and non-invasive. Handling all the parts, especially during assembly I was happy to find no sharp edges anywhere; the finish on the case has been very well done. The tempered glass covers and sides are well made.

Cons: I have one major complaint about the case, though I think it could be solved simply by changing the motherboard standoffs, the mothboard sits about 2-3mm too low in respect to the card slot bracket, making the cards not fully seat or seat at an angle. I knocked an egg off because of this issue even though it’s an easy fix for the end user if they acquire different standoffs, the hardware should be supplied and this should have been caught by the manufacturer. For everything else with what this case is I don’t have too many complaints, however I will list a few items I think could also be improved. The top cover, front panel, and internal motherboard side radiator mount are a tiny bit wobbly since they are only secured on one side, I would like to see some reinforcement on them, however I suspect that if you had radiators installed in those positions it would stiffen them up quite a bit. Some of the screw holes in the steel parts had paint in them, making putting in the thumb screws and standoffs in during assembly a bit annoying. The aluminum parts I had no trouble with at all since they appear to be anodized, I wish the whole case was aluminum save for the glass of course. The instructions could be broken down into a few more steps to make assembly easier. The case is a bit heavy, but I would expect that from this much glass and metal. I’m not sure I completely like the 3.5” drive mounting positions, but I’m very happy to see them. The mounts for the water cooling equipment seem to be setup for Raijintek’s coolers, however they could easily be adapted or modded otherwise. Also remember that it’s an open air case, placing it somewhere where something will never spill on it would be wise, as well as by nature of course it will get dusty and need cleaned regularly, possibly more than a case that’s not as open. I wish it came with some of the fans, it also does not come with the vertical GPU mount that is pictured in some of the product images. The final issue is that there is no mount included for an I/O shield, I would like to see this be an optional part included with the case.

Overall Review: It took me about 20 minutes to unpack and put the case together, it was very well packed and the instructions where alright, though I would like to see them broken into a few more steps in some places to make it easier to understand. I’ve looked at using this case from a few angles and I’m considering modding mine to hold multiple rigs since it does have 2 power supply mounts. All the parts seem to be very well made, I had no fitment issues with any of the parts except for the height of the motherboard in respect to the card bracket. I will recommend caution with the steel pieces as the screw holes seem to have some paint down in them and I ended up having a rough time getting the thumb screws and standoffs in for the glass panels, one of the standoffs snapped (since brass can be a rather soft and brittle material), but I had more laying around the same size so I just ran a regular steel screw in and out of the hole a few times to clean out the paint and then installed the new standoff without issue. I will warn that this case is heavy, so when you order it, do know that it’s a monster and with no components installed it weighs somewhere around 50-55lbs, so I figure with a large water cooling setup and some big power supplies it could easily weigh 80+ lbs. Overall I am impressed with the size and the overall quality of the case, I would recommend it to those who are devising massive water cooling loops or want an over the top case, this case really seems to lend itself to those that have some modding and hardware skill to take their build to the next level, providing an awesome platform to start with. Just be sure to check fitment of your cards, I would hope the manufacturer addresses this issue with a different set of standoffs or a shorter card bracket ( different standoffs would be the simplest way ).