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martian_aphid

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About martian_aphid

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  1. martian_aphid

    Compact ITX case and PSU for office build

    Thanks for all the help guys. Going to start sourcing all the parts in the coming week. All the best
  2. martian_aphid

    Compact ITX case and PSU for office build

    yeah, I see that now. The AM1-5350 is only a 25w TDP so not much trouble. I suppose I should factor in a aftermarket cooler too, something along the lines of this for Kaveri: low profile cooler
  3. martian_aphid

    Compact ITX case and PSU for office build

    Thanks for that VaporX. I'm just putting together a basket with that configuration and it's coming in at less than
  4. martian_aphid

    Compact ITX case and PSU for office build

    Hi Mr Bowtie, thanks for the recommendation. I couldn't find that exact Winsis unit over here but I found a couple that look awfully close: In-Win Akasa There's also an Antec unit which is a touch longer: Antec They all come with PSUs which my best guess are TFX units. I was thinking of getting a 300W PSU - would that suffice? Out of interest what sort of spec do you put in these sized cases? The smallest I've gone before is mATX so I'm not sure what my limitations are at this size - would it be i3 or could I stretch to i5, or do you recommend AMD? I've only ever built gaming-focussed PCs and so it's been exclusively mid to high end intel.
  5. Happy Holidays guys. Would love a bit of advice on the above. Basically I'm specing up a PC for office use with as small a footprint as possible, ideally that means ITX. At the moment the innards will either be a salvaged i5-3450 and it's partnered RAM from a larger machine, if I can get hold of a LGA1155 ITX motherboard - there don't seem too many options for this older platform over here in the UK. The other option is to get hold of some decent new parts (CPU/Mobo/Ram - no dedicated GPU just integrated graphics will be fine and will keep the size down) any advice on a spec for this would be great - it's just for general office usage. For both options an small ITX is required and also a PSU to match - if we can run either of the above builds on a SFX PSU all the better. But the overall idea is that it doesn't need to be one of the gaming sized ITX cases with the extra space for full-sized graphics cards, megacoolers. There seem to be literally hundreds of ITX cases nowadays (if you take into account HTPC cases) and I'm a bit lost as to which to opt for. I like the smaller Lian Li designs but again they seem to have so many. Also the Rajintek Metis seems like a fairly svelte case. Thanks in advance for any help
  6. martian_aphid

    Freezes In Vista 64

    Hey guys I'm hoping you can help me out or point me in the right direction with a recurring problem. Ever since I've had this rig I've had the occassional freeze which would force me to reboot. Perhaps I was just conscious of the noise it made but I found that it always seemed to be either whilst listening to music or watching a video and the last few miliseconds of audio would just loop whilst everything else would freeze. For this reason I had a feeling it might be audio related. To give you an idea of my audio setup I have an Asus R.O.G. motherboard which came with an audio daughter-card that slides into a dedicated PCI Express x1 slot. It will only work in that specific PCI Express slot and from the reading I've done, although it is still on a seperate card its supposed to still be onboard audio? In to the green front speaker port I basically have a cheap set of 2.1 speakers. The green jack plugs into the bass unit and the bass unit has connections to the left and right speakers. The problem had been rare so I didn't look into it too much. However recently the same freezes are coming back in a more severe form. In all instances it has been whilst using headphone/mic from the FP on my case. The freeze is the same – the same audio loop, but it ends in a BSOD and when it reboots it has wiped all my motherboard settings – I found this out the hard way trying to boot into my OS which was installed with AHCI but with the motherboard reset to IDE! I now have a little list of all the settings I need to make sure are in the BIOS when this problem happens. As far as the front panel audio is concerned, in the BIOS I have it set to HD Audio (instead of AC97) and I'm fairly certain my front panel audio is a HD Audio header (the case is a Thermaltake Armor – older version). At the moment I'm a bit baffled as to where to look for the cause of this problem – front panel problem, motherboard/audio riser problem, driver problem, OS problem? The only common theme is the headphone/mic being in during the latest freezing problems. One time it was during mid speech in LoudTalks, another time it was whilst receiving a call in Skype, before the mic was even in use. TIA - Any help is much appreciated.
  7. martian_aphid

    cloning a boot drive

    Hey davidst, appreciate the tip ;-) I was planning to try out the acronis trial version but I do have a WD external I only got a few months back - perhaps it has the software in the box, though I don't remember a disc in there from memory.
  8. martian_aphid

    cloning a boot drive

    Thanks a lot for the help Great_Gig ;-D just hope the drive holds up until after I get a succesful clone.
  9. martian_aphid

    cloning a boot drive

    Hey guys I had a similar question but when I spotted this thread at the top and thought it might make sense to post it here rather than make a new one - sorry for hijacking the OP ;-) I've had a 500gb Seagate [one of those that came with dodgy firmware] as my boot drive for about 2 years now. Lately boot times have increased and its been acting up a bit [extra long open times on certain files, particularly unzipping files and then opening them - this might be something else but I get a feeling its the drive. Since I'm not sure about the drive and I'm pushing its limits in terms of space, I'm thinking about getting a 1Tb to replace it [probably the F3]. This is where I face a slight issue, since I am away at university and was foolish enough to leave my windows disc at home, I figured I would have to clone the drive - its also quicker than a fresh install so I can get back to work. This is something I haven't done before so I have a few queries I hope you guys can clear up. I'm assuming the drive sizes aren't an issue? Will it simply be a case of plugging in the new drive initialising it and formatting it as if it were a second drive, then cloning it through the OS and then setting it to the boot drive in the BIOS? Will there be any other steps or issues with it being a different drive - drive letters associations, drivers ??? Will the new drive bear the file same structure as the one it was cloned from? Does this mean it will be fragmented - a guess not really an issue after a defrag? Will I need to re-activate windows - its going into the same desktop, the only change is the drive? Thanks in advance for any help or advice Regards MA
  10. martian_aphid

    Does something look wrong with this drive?

    Thanks for the replies guys, I kind of had the idea that the drive was on its way out. Going to try the ghosting and booting from external which I suspect will show the internal drive is at fault, will also look into warranty, though I wonder if excessive heat is the issue, if it will damage any replacement drive :S
  11. martian_aphid

    Does something look wrong with this drive?

    Hey Scott, I would tend to agree. I think the defragmentation is perhaps the symptom of some other problem rather than simply the cause itself. Before, I think I ran seatools diagnostics which didn't complete and checked the SMART with speedfan but didn't see anything. Is there any kind of disk diagnostic you would recommend? One thing I have noticed is the heat this thing chucks out, I am assuming that the heat might be having some effect on the disk if not on other components? CowKing, I have a copy of Auslogic's defrag which I will attempt to install - having problems opening already installed programs so we'll see how it goes ;S
  12. martian_aphid

    Does something look wrong with this drive?

    Hey ShallowBay. My apologies but I wanted to keep the previous post brief so I did not go through the entire troubleshooting process which did include cleaning registry with CCleaner, scanning for viruses, running RAM tests and HDD tests, etc. At that point I was of the belief that the drive was just heavily fragmented [after not responding well to several defragmentation attempts] My final solution at the time was to just go with a clean install to see what the effect would be. I understand that a drive becomes fragmented as a process over time and as well as due to installation of things in particular the OS, but I would never have expected a clean install to have dropped to this level of performance at all let alone after only several days. This is why I am assuming that there may be some more hardware related issues with the drive itself or perhaps some other subsystem that deals with the drive - I don't know? As the SS shows, at that time the drive was being defragged, and over 12hours later still continues to be defragging at only 40% completion. I've defragged my 500gig desktop drive in a fraction of that time and with far more data on - this laptop drive only has 35gig of data on? That's why I'm wondering if it is a hardware issue.
  13. Hey guys Hopefully someone can help me out with this issue I am having with my sister's laptop. Basically she began complaining of really slow performance not long after she got it. At christmas I got a chance to check it out and it was shockingly slow. It would take ~10mins to boot up, applications or files took ages to open, if audio was playing it would constantly stutter and video would jerk. Basically it was unusable. Opening up defraggler showed the disk was just shot so I decided to back up the contents on an external and go for a fresh windows install [XP], which I completed on Monday this week. I then proceeded to install a couple of applications - firefox, a codec pack and couple of other things but pretty much a limited installation. At first the performance seemed better, not great, but a noticable improvement over its previous state. Then I accepted the SP3 updates and all the updates that came after it which seemed to take an eternity. On the next startup things were once again tediously slow - it took a good 10 minutes to desktop, getting a response from the start button seemed to take about 2 minutes = :S I opened up defraggler and this is what I saw: Now I know a clean install, etc. leaves a defragmented drive but this looks pretty poor to me? I'm not expert so I am wondering if this looks like a drive problem to anyone else? Or could it be something else? Basically in the space of a few days a fresh OS install has gone from ok to absolutely shocking, if possible worse than it was before. Any help or insight is much appreciated, and feel free to ask me for any further info or to try something out. MA
  14. martian_aphid

    2009: What Are You Listening To Right Now?

    Road to Perdition OST
  15. martian_aphid

    Loose HDDs

    Thanks for the replies For now I have put it in the antistatic bag and packaging that the new hdd came in but I will probably invest in another caddy at some point to give it a more permanent place :-)
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