MSI 6600GT AGP
PCstats Weekly Tips
BTX Form Factor Explained
A lot of us have been wondering about the new BTX
standard Intel is proposing, and if it's really worth buying
into. PCstats looks into this new form factor for how PC cases, power
supplies and motherboards will be built. We've also test run Microsoft's new
beta spyware protection software. It fails to completely replace the assortment of applications currently out there... but is a step up. The last part of PCstats
series "Mysterious Motherboard Troubles,"
finishes off our look at a
continuing industry problem. Three more Q & A
letters have also been posted.
The reviews start off with a bang, and a little
AGP videocard MSI call the NX6600GT.
Belkin recently sent in an 802.11g print
server, while Seasonic's Power
Angel and Corsair's
512MB USB flash drive also made it past the test bench. We can't
forget PCstats Weekly Tech Tip, and a set of PC2-4300
DDR-2 from Corsair. It's fast DDR-2 RAM, so see our review
for the full details.
PCstats Newsletter and the friendly folks at Crucial.com
would like to applaud Clayton O. of Utah, for taking home 1GB of
Crucial's Ballistix Tracer PC4000 DDR! Thanks to everyone who entered!
There will be more chances to take home the latest computer gear, so
Weren't we all supposed to be using BTX by
now? Its introduction was supposed to coincide with the birth of the
'Alderwood' and 'Grantsdale' chipsets we now know as the Intel 915P
and 925X. Instead, the standard took until just recently to get off
the ground with manufacturers in Taiwan, resulting in Intel bumping the
official introduction of the BTX form
factor to their upcoming chipset generation, 'Glenwood' and
The MSI Geforce
NX6600GT-VTD128 AGP card is compatible with 8x/4x AGP motherboards
only, and will not physically fit in AGP 2X or earlier slots. It comes
equipped with 128MB of Samsung GDDR3
BGA memory on a 128-bit memory bus. At 900MHz, the MSI NX6600GT-VTD12's memory is clocked 50 Mhz
slower than the Albatron Trinity
6600GT AGP card we reviewed recently, and
a full 100Mhz slower than the Gigabyte GV-NX66T128D's
memory. We'll see later if this has any impact on
benchmark performance. Continue
In this article, PCstats will be reviewing the new Belkin
802.11g 2-port USB
Wireless Print Server. This useful little device can support two USB
printers on either a
wired or wireless
network (but not both, more on this later). This is a dedicated print
server, not a router with some extra functionality. It's intended for
small office environments and comes equipped with WEP
encryption to safeguard the privacy of your documents (and your ink)
when then are transmitted
over a 54Mbps 802.11g
Every now and then there comes along a computer or
server that needs Windows
with a specific blend of drivers and
settings. It's times like this that having your own customized
Windows installation can be a time
saver, and life saver. The goal of this guide is to help you create a bootable WinXP/2K install CD that contains the
latest version of your operating system, and once you start the
installation process will
install automatically on its own. Continue Here>>
First there was IE6.0, the next moment Mozilla's
Firefox 1.0 appeared seemingly fully formed in an instant, and gaining
momentum at a furious rate. Suddenly we have the potential for a browser
war again... we haven't seen anything like this since Netscape. Firefox
(like Mozilla) has been in development for a while, slowly perfecting
its browser technology
on both Windows and Linux
platforms, and it shows.Continue
Both of these Corsair
Twin2X1024-4300C3 memory modules are unbuffered, non-ECC in nature and
are rated to run at PC2-4300
(or DDR2-538 speeds) with a voltage of 1.8V. The SPD timings are set
at 3-3-3-8. Like all other Corsair TwinX DIMMs, the Twin2X1024-4300C3
memory is wrapped in aluminum heatspreaders that are supposed to keep the
memory 'nice and cool'... but overclocking usualy heats things
up just a little... Continue
||PCstats Weekly Tech Tips:
If you're worried about what your
family or employees are printing, why not limit the times during which they can print documents to regular office hours? This feature is already built into Windows and
is quite easy to configure, just go to your Control Panel and open
up the 'Printers and Faxes' folder.
From there right
click on the printer you want to limit and go to properties.
That will open up a new window and click on the advanced tab.
Select the 'Available From' radio box and enter the time you'd like the printer to be available.
From now on whenever someone
tries to print something from the computer and does not have administrative
access, they will only be able to print at the allocated
We're looking for new people to join the PCStats Folding@Home
team and help us to break
into the top 50 teams!
|Join the PCstats Forums Today @ Forum.PCstats.com!||
|Mysterious Motherboard Troubles - Part 3|
In the past two columns we've talked about the mysterious motherboard troubles which lead to a FIC AU11 motherboard, ceasing to function.
More specifically, 4 of the board's GSC 10 volt
2200microfarad capacitors and 4 of its GSC 6.3v 1000mf caps blew their
tops, frying the board. This should NOT happen.
Faulty capacitors were a major issue in the industry a
couple of years ago, stemming from an interesting case of industrial espionage
in Japan in which a flawed electrolyte formula was stolen and put to use.
Now there is no easy way of telling which companies produce potentially faulty
capacitors, or even which models to avoid.
The best thing you can do with your existing computer is inspect your
motherboard every now and then. Take a good look at the capacitors on the board, especially
the larger ones. In our observation, these are more likely to go.
Check for unusual bulges on the top of the capacitor and/or leaks around the
base. Obviously, if one or more of your caps have burst their tops, this is a
If you see any sign of bulging or leakage, you are likely to have computer
problems in the near future. Your only real option at this point (besides
backing up your data fast) is to RMA your motherboard and attempt
to get a replacement. Depending on the state of the board and your
warranty, this may or may not work. If you are competent with a
soldering iron, you can try replacing the faulty caps with identical spec new ones
If you are looking to buy a new motherboard, look for good quality
capacitors (typically Sanyo, or known brands). As a rule of thumb, the cheaper the board, the cheaper the
components are likely to be, but do your homework and don't buy bargain basement
components if you want your system to last.