The last replacement fan actually lasted a whole year, which at least was something. I’m not sure how long the new one will last, but we’ll see since it’s a different brand than the last 2. This fan also comes in a nice branded box, unlike the generic past one.
The fan is the only thing we have inside the box. It fits very nice and is wrapped on a plastic bag:
Here is the fan after taking it out of the bag:
Replacing the fan in this laptop is very easy. We simply need to take out the cover:
We then simply take out 3 small screws:
Here are the old and new fans side-by-side:
They are almost identical, with the fan being from the same brand. Finally, here’s the new fan installed:
So far, the laptop is working at optimum CPU speeds with no throttle. Only time will tell how long this fan will last.
You can get this fan at Amazon at the following link:
The UGREEN 2.5-inch HDD and SSD to USB 3.0 Enclosure
The packaging is small and straightforward. UGREEN always make some environmental friendly packages for their products:
We see the enclosure as soon as we open the box:
We then have the instruction booklet below:
The enclosure is very well protected:
Once it is taken out, it looks very similar to the USB-C model:
The difference being in that this just use a standard USB 3.0 Type B port:
The drive accepts a SATA drive. A hard disk drive or a solid state drive will both work:
The included cable is just a short USB 3.0 cable. It is not a Y splitter cable:
Here I connected the enclosure to my PC:
And I ran a quick benchmark on one of the drives. We can see it ran at USB 3.0 speeds. This disk is a bit slow, but the purpose of the enclosure is to reuse them until they finally die:
This Hard Disk Drive enclosure is excellent to use our internal hard disk drives and solid state drives as external drives. You can find this enclosure for $12 or less. It runs at USB 3.0 speeds which means we can make the most of the drive’s technical features. Overall, a nice addition to our daily workflow.
I had 6 drives without a case, so I got 6 of these:
I then labeled them to identify them better:
My smallest drive is a 120GB drive while the largest are 1TB drives. This is a great way to reuse old laptop’s hard drives.
You can get this enclosure on Amazon at the following link:
Today, we will be seeing the AINOPE 10-feet Active USB 3.0 Extension Cable. This is a USB 3.0 extension cable that has a built-in chip that is supposed to improve the signal to prevent transmission issues. It is why it’s called an active cable. The purpose is that we can have a longer USB cable without any negative issues.
This cable comes in a simple packaging which a lot of cable words in it:
Inside, we have the cable in a plastic bag:
The first impressions are that the cable seem to be well made:
The USB female connector side is bigger and larger than usual extension cables since there is where the chip is located. I’m not sure what exact model it uses, but the item description specifies it is an NXP chip (Another competing product specifies that its cable uses a PTN36241B chip):
The male plug is pretty much normal:
I plugged this cable and so far it seems to be doing the job:
The Story behind this purchase
I posted about several hubs I got lately, specifically the Sabrent 10-port and Rosonway 7-port USB hubs. I also have a UGREEN 4-port USB 3.0 hub and a 6-feet UGREEN USB 3.0 extension cable. My setup is seemed to be working great, but suddenly I started having some USB Semaphore Timeout issues that would cause a USB port reset. Whenever I tried to reconnect the cable, Windows would report a Code 31 “Request not supported” Error. Just to try to find the cause of it, I got this cable, but the issue continued happening. Because of this, I know the cause is not this cable, as the issue happens with the other one too. The issue seems to not be the new hubs, as I swapped it and it still happened. Now, my system uses an AMD X570 chipset which is known to have USB issues. I do think there may be some chipset compatibility issues between my system and the hubs. Swapping ports did not help either, and both the front and back panels seem to suffer from this issue. I’m still investigating this, but I can say that this cable is working properly.
This cable offers a 10-feet length that is good if we want to connect something that’s far away from our computers. The build quality seem to be good except for the female connector, where the case is made by plastic, but the connectors itself feels solid. It’s also cheap, so you can get it and improve your workstation setup.
This hub comes with a 60-Watt Power Supply which means this mighty hub allows us to use USB-Powered devices without struggles. It also has a power switch to allow us to turn a port on or off at any time. Finally, because it has 10 USB 3.0 ports, we can connect up to 10 USB devices to it.
We will find the USB Hub inside the box:
After taking out the hub, we find a box that contains the cables:
At the very end, we have the user manual and a warranty card:
Let’s take a closer look at the USB Hub:
The main USB port is a Type-B 3.0 port. The DC power connector is of barrel type and the power supply must supply 12V. We can see that each port has an LED in the middle, between the USB ports and the power button.
The Power Supply is effectively able to supply up to 60W, as it can output up to 5 Amps at 12 Volts.
The Power Supply is also a 2-piece item, A Nema 1-15P to IEC C7 cable is needed to connect to the power supply. This cable is widely used in other products, like in some inkjet printers. The USB cable is a 3.0 Type A to Type B cable.
Here we have the entire product content:
Lastly, I’ve put it to work, using 6 ports out of the 10:
So far it’s been working reliably. I was using a USB 2.0 hub but was having some Semaphore Timeout issues, which simply doesn’t happen with this hub. The USB-powered devices are also all being powered by the hub and haven’t experienced yet an issue with neither of them. The 6 devices are all slim Optical Drives. We’ll see those at a later post.
You can buy the Sabrent 10-port USB Hub at Amazon in the following link:
2 UGREEN products: USB 3.0 6ft Extension Cable and a 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub
Today, we will be seeing 2 UGREEN products. These are a USB 3.0 6ft Extension Cable and a 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub. These 2 products have been with me since last summer and they’ve been working great. These products are being used right now as a middle point between my PC and other USB Hubs that are connected to the 4-port hub. We will be seeing those other hubs on future posts.
The USB Extension cable is very basic and basically comes in a simple bag. This is the 6-feet version:
Both sides of it are Gold-plated.
The USB Hub comes on a very simple packaging. Points to UGREEN for a sustainable package!
Opening it reveals the USB Hub with both parts protected:
The hub itself is made of plastic. It also has a Micro USB port to supply additional power if we plan to use it with USB-Powered devices like portable hard disk drives or optical drives. The cable is a bit long too. However, since in my case my PC is on one side and the stuff I will connect will be on another side, the USB extension cable is also required. This hub appears to use a GL3510 chip from Genesys Logic, Inc.
In the end, my setup looks like this:
In the next posts, we will see the other 2 hubs that finally got delivered to me after an unexpected delay
In the past few months, I got a “refurbished” transparent blue Nintendo DS Lite and wanted to share it with you. The unit is really beautiful, really transparent and cool to look at the insides. The shipping experience was really positive and even through it is marketed as a refurbished unit, it actually looks and feels like new.
The unit came without a console box. Instead, it came wrapped inside a small shipping box along with a USB charging cable:
Both the front and back came protected with a protective sheet:
I took it off, and here’s without the sheets:
When opening it, you can see the LCD screens, with basically no scratches:
When powering it on, we can see the screens have a cool white color:
Games really look amazing in this model:
The color tone is cool, and looks very sharp and detailed. I’m not sure if these are third-party screens, given this is a refurbished model. The motherboard is of course, genuine, but the rest of the components may not be. However, whoever built this refurbished unit did an excellent job. The only downside that I really noticed is that the touch screen requires a bit more of pressure than usually required, but this may be due to third-party hardware. In reality, you don’t have to do a lot of pressure, but just a bit. The games all work and I haven’t had any button problems at all. Also questionable is the unit serial number. It really is not important, since this is an already discontinued model and out of official support, but it seems odd to have it on a third-party shell.
Overall, I’m satisfied with my purchase, after all, I got it for just about $53 dollars. A really good deal!
Burning a ValueDisc Blu-Ray Disc in the Panasonic UJ-260 drive
These are White Inkjet Printable discs, so they have a printable surface:
The data side from these discs are dark grey colored:
Here is a quick comparison of the disc compared with the previously-reviewed SmartBuy BD-R discs:
As you can see, there is a significant difference in the data surface.
The media code of these discs is CMCMAG-BA5-000:
Burning in the Panasonic UJ-260
We will be burning these discs in the Panasonic UJ-260 drive:
This drive can burn these discs at 2x and 6x. I burned a disc using Nero at the maximum speed, to which it was successfully doing, although it burned it at 2x instead of the 6x speed it should have burned:
The disc verification was also successful:
Here is the disc burned surface:
Both my LiteOn and LG WH16NS58 drives seem to agree in that this is a great burn:
I burned another disc again, and on that one, the drive decided to burn at the full 6x speed:
This disc also verified correctly:
My LG drive also thinks this is a great burn:
For this disc, I forgot to scan it on the LiteOn drive, but we can see in the above image that the disc has burned fine, with a bit of increases in the numbers as it progresses but nothing worrying.
The Panasonic UJ-260 can successfully burn and verify these discs at up to 6x, altough it may sometimes burn a disc at just 2x. The quality seems to be very good. Another Media Code that the drive can handle with great results.
In the next posts we will see how this disc burned in the LiteOn iHBS112 and in the Pioneer BDR-2212 drives.
You can purchase these discs on Amazon at the following link:
The SmartBuy BD-RE 25GB discs and burning it in the Panasonic UJ-260 drive
Today, we will see the SmartBuy BD-RE 25GB disc. This is a rewritable, single-layer Blu-Ray disc that can hold up to 25GB of data. Rewritable discs are the slowest Blu-Ray media available, only allowing them to be burnt at up to 2x speed. This is my first time using a rewritable Blu-Ray disc, so we’ll see how it performs in my Panasonic UJ-260 drive.
My favorite Blu-Ray burner drive is the Panasonic UJ-260 drive. So I’ll be burning a disc in that drive. Since there was never an official DVD+/-RW DL (Double layer Rewritable DVD discs), these rewritable Blu-Ray discs are a great choice for when we need to temporarily hold data that would otherwise not fit on a standard DVD+/-RW discs. Examples are some Windows installation ISO files that can be a bit bigger than the standard 4.37GB size for a normal DVD disc.
I started ImgBurn and it reports that these discs have a media code of RITEK-BW1-001:
We can also see that the only speed it supports is 2x for writing. There are no other speed variants for this type of discs. At 2x, burning a full 25GB (23.3GB on Windows) will take about 45 minutes. Luckily, the discs can be read at up to 6x in this drive, so reading data will definitely be faster, taking up to 22 to 25 minutes.
Before we start burning these discs, we can tweak ImgBurn to allow the disc to burn at its full speed or have some extra care while burning. These options are:
Prefer Format With Full Certification
Prefer Format Without Spare Areas
Prefer Properly Formatted Discs
Prefer Format Without Spare Areas will allow us to use the full disc size. If this is disabled, the disc will have spare areas which means a portion of the space cannot be used. This also enables or disables the Blu-Ray hardware defect management system. For these settings to take effect, we need to execute a Full Erase operation.
The other format options can increate the formatting time considerably, so if you want to get up and running, be sure to disable the first and last option. Otherwise, except ImgBurn to perform a full disc erase, taking a long time to do before the burn process actually stats.
One should also have the DVD-RAM / BD-RE FastWrite option enabled to allow the disc to burn at the full speed. In reality, my burns have been of varying speeds. Sometimes it will write at 2x, while other times it will simply write at 1x, regardless of these settings. It seems that ultimately, the drive takes control of what speed it will use, probably because of its power calibration, or maybe it sees something and the firmware decides to take control:
Once we tweak ImgBurn, we can start burning a disc. It may ask us to format or erase the disc, to which will permit the software to do. Once erased or formatted, the software will burn the disc. This drive was able to successfully burn this disc at the full 2x speed:
And the verification was also successful:
This is how the burned disc looks like:
These discs looks like an excellent media to burn temporary data, like Windows installation discs when we need to reinstall the operating system, given that nowadays some images can be bigger than what a single-layer DVD can hold. The Panasonic UJ-260 drive identified, burned and verified the disc correctly. Ritek seems to be doing great discs, which SmartBuy sells, and these are an example. The surface looks smooth and seems of top quality.
You can buy these discs on Amazon at the following link:
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