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Brandon W.

Brandon W.

Joined on 09/30/10

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 58
Most Favorable Review

Good Price to Perf CPU

Intel Core i5 6th Gen - Core i5-6600K 6M Skylake Quad-Core 3.5 GHz LGA 1151 91W BX80662I56600K Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 530
Intel Core i5 6th Gen - Core i5-6600K 6M Skylake Quad-Core 3.5 GHz LGA 1151 91W BX80662I56600K Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 530

Pros: Price ($243) Price to Perf Ratio

Cons: Lower Base Clock (3.5GHz & 3.9GHz Boost) No hyperthreading (4 Cores, 4 Threads) 6MB Cache

Overall Review: This is a great price to performance CPU. There is really no need for Hyper threading unless you know you have applications that can actually take advantage of the extra threads (Spoilers, most games don't do this yet). Coming from an i5-3570K I definitely didn't have an issue with running another i5 in my system. I was going to splurge on the i7 this time around, but after waiting over a month for it to be released as a stand alone product (which is still hasn't at the time of this review), I got sick and tired of waiting. I didn't really notice a huge jump in performance from my 3570K which was overclocked to 4.3 GHz, but I never really went into this with that intention. I went into this because the new technologies it brings with the z170 chipset such as DDR4, PCIe M.2 support and several other things are really what had me sold. Overall I am very satisfied with my purchase and would highly recommend this for those who can't find a real purpose for spending the extra money on the i7 as this CPU can easily be overclocked to match the speed of the i7.

Most Critical Review

Too noisy for me but performs wonderfully

Toshiba X300 5TB Performance & Gaming Internal Hard Drive 7200 RPM SATA 6Gb/s 128MB Cache 3.5 inch - HDWE150XZSTA (RETAIL PACKAGE)
Toshiba X300 5TB Performance & Gaming Internal Hard Drive 7200 RPM SATA 6Gb/s 128MB Cache 3.5 inch - HDWE150XZSTA (RETAIL PACKAGE)

Pros: 7200rpm Good read/write speeds Large capacity for a reasonable price ($.03 per GB @ $139.99 each)

Cons: Noisy AF Hot AF

Overall Review: I just simply couldn't use these in my gaming build. I wanted to find something to store all of my games (I mean all of them) so I needed a lot of storage that wasn't horrendously slow. I picked these out as well as some WD Blue 4TB drives to compare. These are unbelievably loud doing anything. Idle is loud, activity is loud, even looking at them is loud! If I had my rig hid away somewhere where I never would hear it, then I would be fine with these but since my build sits on my desk, I am a lot more mindful about the noise my computer produces and these would simply not work. Don't get me wrong, they perform great and are definitely faster vs the WD Blues that I inevitably stuck with but they come at the cost of noise and heat generation. To me, that was a deal breaker. If you can survive the noise these make, I can recommend these drives. If not, then you might want to look elsewhere.

Works well and looks nice

Enermax LIQMAX III 120 ARGB, All-in-one CPU Liquid Cooler for AM4 & AM5 / LGA 1700/1200/1151, 120mm Radiator, Dual-Chamber Water Block, ARGB Fan - AM5 & LGA1700 Compatible
Enermax LIQMAX III 120 ARGB, All-in-one CPU Liquid Cooler for AM4 & AM5 / LGA 1700/1200/1151, 120mm Radiator, Dual-Chamber Water Block, ARGB Fan - AM5 & LGA1700 Compatible

Pros: Easy install Relatively quiet overall (see cons) Good looking RGB Weaved tubing On par performance for a 120mm AIO

Cons: Pump is a little on the noisy side when running full speed. The sound it makes does "blend in" / can be drowned out by the noise of my GPU fans and system fans though when they spin up.

Overall Review: This is my first experience with an Enermax AIO that I've actually been able to use. I previously purchased a Liqtech 120X a few years ago but was unable to fit it in my case at the time. So far the performance is about what you would expect from a 120mm AIO of this size with 1 fan (mine is set up in a "pull" configuration). The main reason I went with this cooler is because at the time I purchased it, it was 20% off and had a $15 rebate available making this one of the cheapest options out there. It had more features and a better aesthetic (in my opinion) than some of the other options as well. So far this has performed well on my Core i5-11600K at stock speed that is undervolted. The case I'm currently using could only realistically fit a lower profile tower cooler or a 120mm AIO. So I opted to go with the 120mm AIO. Overall, I don't have any regrets purchasing this AIO. The only thing I do wish is that the pump was a little bit quieter at full speed. I can control the speed of the pump with my motherboard to make it quieter but the cooler becomes less effective when slowing the flow rate of the liquid. Otherwise I am satisfied with my purchase for now and will see how it performs in the long run

This review for ASRock review rebate program. Good Value Z590 Motherboard

ASRock Z590 Steel Legend WiFi 6E LGA 1200 Intel Z590 SATA 6Gb/s ATX Intel Motherboard
ASRock Z590 Steel Legend WiFi 6E LGA 1200 Intel Z590 SATA 6Gb/s ATX Intel Motherboard

Pros: Design - Neutral color scheme - Not overly "gamer-y" look and design - Standard ATX form factor (No shortened width on this one) Physical Features - Pre-attached I/O shield / cover - 2.5Gbps port - Rear 10Gbps USB ports - WiFi 6E connectivity - Dual 8-pin 12V Power Connectors - 4x M.2 sockets (1 being PCIe 4.0 compatible and 1 being occupied by the WiFi card) - Plenty of Fan headers - Conveniently placed RGB headers (both standard and addressable) - Conveniently placed USB 3.0 headers (bottom of the board and the "typical" position too) - POST status debug LEDs UEFI Features - Easy to use interface - Decent fan control

Cons: Wish the rear I/O also had USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 ports instead of only being available on the Front Panel Type-C connector Wish the Nahimic audio software had a "sidetone" feature like my previous motherboard did Wish the fan control was a bit more customizable (hysteresis settings, ramp up speed, ramp down speed, etc...)

Overall Review: I have been using ASRock motherboards in the various builds I've had for about 8 years now. I keep ending up with ASRock motherboards because they offer great features at a good "bang for your buck" price. This motherboard is no exception here. It offers plenty of connectivity, great "future proofing" features (2.5 Gbps LAN port, WiFi 6E connectivity with Bluetooth 5.2 , USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 connectivity, Thunderbolt 4 add-in capability via ASRock Thunderbolt 4 AIC Card and PCIe Gen 4 support) and provides basically everything most people could need. The cons I have listed are pretty minor ones and don't really hinder the usability of the board so I don't feel justified docking "1 Egg" for those. I loaded this Motherboard up with an Intel Core i5-11600K and 16 GB of DDR4-3200 MHz RAM from OLOy. Getting the RAM to run at 3200 MHz was no problem via XMP. With the 11th Generation of Intel CPUs there isn't very much room for overclocking so instead of overclocking the CPU I am "undervolting" it for now. The case I'm using only has support for either a fairly short tower style air cooler or a 120 mm AIO so I decided to go with the 120 mm AIO. Since the 11th Gen CPUs run hot, undervolting the CPU is the best way for me to keep temps in check. Performing the undervolt via the UEFI was very simple and things have been stable so far since I've owned this hardware. I haven't been able to test all of the features of this motherboard but so far things have been great with it. I expect nothing less from my history of using ASRock motherboards in the past. I can easily recommend this to someone looking for a good set of features at a price that won't break the bank and if you don't need the WiFi connectivity now, save the $20-$30 bucks and go with the non-WiFi version of this board. It still allows you to add a WiFi module in the future if you eventually needed one. The ASRock Z590 Steel Legend WiFi 6E motherboard may not be a "top of the line" motherboard in ASRock's lineup but not very many people NEED that tier of a motherboard and this one fits the bill perfectly!

Works perfectly for my needs

CORSAIR Hydro Series H55 Quiet Edition Water / Liquid CPU Cooler 120mm (CW-9060010-WW)
CORSAIR Hydro Series H55 Quiet Edition Water / Liquid CPU Cooler 120mm (CW-9060010-WW)

Pros: Flexible tubing and routing options Easy to mount and install Quiet (Can't hear the pump at all, can't comment on the fan because I'm not using it)

Cons: None

Overall Review: I purchased this because I required a very specific combination of pump design and tubing materials to cram this into my SilverStone FTZ01 on the side panel. In order to fit in the constrained space, I had to route the tubes in a very specific fashion and utilize a slim (15mm thick) 120mm fan. Prior to this cooler I was utilizing a be quiet! Shadow Rock LP but my 7700K was thermal throttling at stock speeds. With this cooler not only have I dropped operating temps by around 10-20 Degrees C but I was also able to easily overclock my 7700K to 4.8GHz (haven't tried higher yet) without issue. I was skeptical that this wouldn't provide significantly better cooling than the ShadowRock LP but I am very happy that I was wrong! I'm pleased with the performance of this cooler even with the slim fan mounted to it. It performs significantly better than my previous cooler and operates very quietly as well.

Works Great!

Team T-Force Vulcan 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 2400 (PC4 19200) Desktop Memory Model TLGD416G2400HC14DC01
Team T-Force Vulcan 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4 2400 (PC4 19200) Desktop Memory Model TLGD416G2400HC14DC01

Pros: Color Neutral Low profile Works as advertised

Cons: None

Overall Review: Third time using Team Group RAM. Haven't had a single issue with any of their kits so far and that trend continues with this one. My motherboard was on the QVL tested by Team Group so I had confidence this kit would work without issue. Not much else to say. It does its job and I hope it continues to work without issue long into the future.