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Pros: Given the limited number of PCe x1 graphic cards that are out there on the market, this card performs very well. I'd purchased the card so my daughter could play Sims 2 on a Dell Optiplex GX520 computer I'd inherited from work. (My daughter told me the Sims 2 images stank on the Optiplex, when compared to those generated by our older Pentium 4 computer, which carried an 8 MB AGP video card.) She tells me the Sims 2 video looks very good with this Zotac board in place. Were we big gamers, I wouldn't have purchased this graphics card in the first place. I would simply have purchased a brand-new PC. However, for those wishing to upgrade an older PC, featuring an isolated PCe x1 upgrade path, this graphics card should fit the ticket.
Cons: I had a devil of a time getting the card to install and work on my Dell Optiplex GX520 mini-tower computer. However, I'm not sure I can blame Zotec or the card for this. Although I repeatedly disabled the motherboard's on-board Intel video through the computer's BIOS, upon booting to Windows, I found that both the Zotac board and the Intel onboard video chipset remained enabled. This produced some type of terrible conflict that resulted in, among other things, blank computer screens, failure to boot to the OS, loss of the Start button and taskbar on my Windows desktop--all of which made me think my computer had been infected by malware, when the symptoms had apparently been caused by the PC's switching back and forth between the Zotac card and the onboard video drivers. If you're having trouble getting this Zotac board to install and work on your PC, try disabling the onboard video found in the "Display Adapters" section of Windows Device Manager. Hopefully that will do the trick.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: Intel BOXD945PVSLKR LGA 775 Intel 945P ATX Intel Motherboard
Pros: Though I'm no motherboard afficionado, I can recommend the D945PVS to everyone interested in an up-to-date, stable, MOBO. The board has a PCI-Express x16 slot for a videocard (no AGP), 4 SATA HD connectors, and lots of included hardware (IDE and SATA cables and a very cool, 3.5" tray, which installs in an external 3.5" drive bay and brings USB, firewire, and audio connectors to the front of your computer case). On-board audio is good and saved me the cost of a sound card. The board comes with an elaborate and informative user's manual. Installing the board was easy, and I also had no problem setting up my new SATA HD using the F6 diskette routine. If you're not into overclocking, you will not go wrong purchasing this board.
Cons: From what others have said, this board should not be purchased by people interested in overclocking. The only serious downside to the board I encountered was its single IDE connector. I don't understand why Intel didn't provide a second IDE controller on this MOBO. Most users have 2 (or more) CD or DVD-ROM drives on their computers and require a second IDE controller for a Zip drive or other internal hardware. To install my computer's IDE hardware, I had to purchase and install a PCI IDE controller card. For those needing only a single IDE controller, however, this MOBO is the bomb.
Other Thoughts: As always, newegg.com's service was fantastic. I'm glad I don't have to compete against the company's business model: outstanding customer service and excellent prices. I'm sure they'd drive me out of business.READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: COOLER MASTER Praetorian 730 RC-730-KSN1 Black Aluminum ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Pros: This case is solidly constructed out of heavy-gauge aluminium. It possesses an aesthetically pleasing design and is a pleasure to look at. The removeable MOBO tray made MOBO installation a snap. Thumb-screw fittings make opening the case and installing add-on cards both toolless and extremely easy. The 120-mm front hard-drive cooling fan and the two 80-mm rear exhaust fans produce acceptable case ventilation and decent system temperatures. (I'm running an Intel Pentium 4 630 CPU on an Intel D945PVS MOBO.)
Cons: Several, none of which seriously detracts from the case's otherwise superb features. First, the black plastic funnel positioned inside the left side window will interfere with the installation of any tall CPU cooler (e.g., a Zalman CNPS9500 heatsink). The funnel, however, can be easily removed. Second, I don't especially like having the USB/audio/Firewire connection panel on the top of the case. (My case sits under a table, making it a pain to access the connectors.) Still, this is just a matter of personal design choice. Finally, the CoolerMaster's MOBO tray did not have a predrilled hole at one of the 11 mounting locations for my D945PVS MOBO. No great hardship since the MOBO's still attached at 10/11 fixation points. However, I always thought MOBO trays possessed mounting holes for every conceivable MOBO configuration.
Other Thoughts: Anyone in the market for an ATX form-factor computer case will not regret purchasing this one.READ FULL REVIEW