Crucial P3 Plus 2TB

Back in May Crucial announced two of their latest NVMe-based M.2 SSDs with their P3 and P3 Plus. These drives continue their P lineup which has had the P1 and the P5 as their budget and flagship drives and later the P2 replaced the P1 and they introduced the P5 Plus to push things farther being their first PCIe 4.0 drive. Well the P3 and P3 Plus drop in the middle of the lineup as a cheaper PCIe 4.0 option behind the P5 Plus and today I have the P3 Plus in the office to test to see how it performs. Crucial is normally great at offering a good value in this part of their lineup so I’m excited to see if the P3 Plus continues that so let’s dig in.

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Project Icyu– Blue Iris Build Part 1

If you have been a reader for a while now you may have noticed that while I do sometimes love smart home products and some of the cloud-based services that go along with them. I have a strong hate for anything that requires a monthly payment and I try to host as much as I can on our own rather than have potentially important data in someone else’s hands. I’ve moved things like Google Photos over to our own storage and even before all of the cloud-based camera services came out we were running our own IP cameras with a basic server running on my main PC. Eventually, to take the load off of that I used a small SFF system that I had to run Blue Iris and then stored the data on a NAS. With me trying to tidy up our server rack I have been hoping to get that server rack mounted but I have also been running into issues with our current setup in just about every way possible so it’s high time that I stop putting this off and rebuild our security server, welcome to Project Icyu.

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Razer Deathadder V3 Pro

I picked up my first Razer mouse in a CompUSA back in 2005 and it was the newly introduced at the time Diamondback Plasma which looked crazy and was the first time I had given any thought to the performance of my mouse. While I did like it the shape didn’t fit my hand at all so I later picked up the newly launched Deathadder which was larger and fit my hand perfectly. In fact, I liked it so much that later on, I picked up two more for $25 each on sale. I eventually would upgrade when Razer offered better sensors and over the years I have switched back and forth between the Deathadder and the Sensei shape but I always come back to the Deathadder from time to time. Well 16 years after the original Deathadder launch Razer is now introducing their new Deathadder V3 and I’ve got the wireless Deathadder V3 Pro here in the office to check out today so let’s see what's new!

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V-color Skywalker Plus DDR4 2x32GB 4000MHz

Maybe it's because I just finished watching the entire Star Wars movie lineup after finishing the Obi-Wan TV series but the name Skywalker evokes a little bit of nostalgia and is the last thing I would see as the model name for memory. But that is the name that V-color went with. We haven’t had anything in the office from V-Color but I have been seeing coverage about them pop up for the last few years and the company itself has been around going back to 2006. The Skywalker Plus lineup features heatspreaders with silver or golden plating on them which isn’t new but is rare to see and always stands out so I’m excited to take a closer look and see how they perform. Let’s dive in.

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Asus ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme

Rumors about Intel’s next generation of CPUs have been going around for a while but we recently saw that BIOS support for the future CPUs have been hitting some motherboards including Asus’s Z690 boards. This means that for those who are looking to build a high-end PC right now you can go with one of those Z690 boards with at least some confidence that an upgrade later will be possible. As far as Z690 boards go there is a HUGE range in features and pricing but there are a few cool options up on the high end. A good example of this is the ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme that we have been using on our test bench going back to the Z690 launch and it is high time that I take a close look at it so let’s check out what it has going on.

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Nebula Capsule

In my quest to check out a few of the sub-brands of Anker it has led me to Nebula which is a brand focused on portable and home projectors. In a world now filled with LCD, LED, and OLED displays projection as a whole has been a lot rarer to see but Nebula has recognized that one area where projection does still work well is when it comes to portability and they have a variety of options available. They sent over the Nebula Capsule which is their entry-level portable projector that has been around for a long time now (launched in 2017) so I’m curious to see what it’s all about. Let’s go take a look at the features then put it to the test!

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Soundcore Trance Go and Soundcore Motion Boom

It’s hard to believe that it was four years ago when I last took a look at a variety of portable speaker options. At that time we were getting ready for our first summer with a pool and looking at our options for poolside music. I ended up finding a nice speaker for in the shower and a speaker for by the pool that my wife and I both loved. While that speaker is still working, I’ve been wondering if we could have a little more kick and curious what other options are out there. The chance to check out speakers from Anker’s audio brand Soundcore came up and they had a few options that were portable but might also have a little more volume and bass so today I’m going to check them out and see if they fit the bill. We have the Soundcore Trance Go and the Soundcore Motion Boom, let’s check them out.

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Sound Blaster Katana V2

Between reviews and my love for tech as a whole means that a lot of the hardware around our house changes up over time and it is rare that any one thing sticks around for an extended period of time. This has been the focus of the year-end roundups where I check back in to see what hardware over the years I’m still using. There have been two consistent on there. I’m still using the Sound Blaster X7, six years in now, though I would love to see a new version of that come out. The other is the Sound Blaster Katana soundbar that my wife has been using. We liked the Katana so much that we ended up getting a second one to use in our living room as well. Well, Sound Blaster brought out the Katana 2 this past fall and today I’m going to see how it compares to the original. Is it worth the upgrade? Let’s find out!

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Viper Gaming VPR400 1TB RGB PCIe Gen 4x4 SSD

As SSD manufacturers have been slowly filling out their PCIe Gen 4 SSD options one of the trends that some of them did with past M.2 drives was sprinkle in a little RGB lighting into the mix and so far except for the WD SN850 which had a small light no one has done that with their new 4th Gen drives. Viper Gaming which is the gaming brand of Patriot just introduced their new Viper Gaming VPR400 which does exactly that by mixing their Viper Gaming VPR100 design that I previously reviewed with a new Innogrit Gen 4x4 controller. Today I’m going to take a closer look at the VPR400 and then put it through our test suite to see how it performs, lets's go!

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Corsair K65 RGB MINI 60%

I’ve been a huge fan of compact keyboards for years now pushing for more TKL options when that was as small as you could get from most companies and then moving to 60% keyboard once I discovered some of the more enthusiast-focused brands. Small 60% keyboards cut things down to just what you need and put the rest of the keys on a function layer and their small size makes them much easier for transporting or in situations where you don’t have a lot of desktop space or if you just want a minimalistic look. Well over the last few years they have hit the mainstream and all of the big names in peripherals have brought out their 60% options including Corsair. I’ve had their K65 RGB Mini 60% in the office for a while now and I’m excited to finally see what it’s all about so let’s check it out.

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WaterGuru SENSE

While sometimes smart home products can come off as lazy, but I know for me the goal is to simplify things to free up time for activities that I enjoy. As a homeowner with a pool, starting in the spring I have a long list of things to get done to open up the pool. Once I get all of that done I then have to stay on top of things to keep it clean and clear which even if you run a chlorinator or use tablets with a floaty you should still be keeping a close eye on your levels. You might be able to find a remote temperature gauge, but checking your FC and PH on the other hand you will need to be there. But I recently came across the WaterGuru SENSE which claims to be able to do just that and I’m interested in finding out how well it would work for me and today I’m going to check it out and see what the WaterGuru Sense is all about.

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eufy Security Video Doorbell Dual

It’s interesting how over the years the number of smart home devices in our home has grown with a majority of our lighting integrated, smart speakers in key rooms to control things and for music/questions, and we have a good set of security cameras outside to keep an eye on things all of the time and some inside for when we are away. But one of the most quintessential “smart home” devices the video doorbell still hasn’t been added into the mix. It isn’t that I haven’t wanted one, but for a long time I was holding out trying to find one that could integrate without Blue Iris camera setup but there haven’t been much for options, and companies have been trending more and more to their own ecosystems so I decided why wait any longer let's make the step. So let’s check out the eufy Security Video Doorbell Dual camera which has a second downward-facing camera to keep an eye out for and on packages.

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EnGenius ECS2512 2.5G Switch

As part of updating my home office network, I took a look at the EnGenius ECS2512FP back in 2020. It gave us 2.5G networking with POE to get full speed out to our ECW230 WiFi 6 access point. This also helped get a few PCs connected at 2.5G and using the build-in SFP+ ports I was also able to connect a few PCs and servers at 10G. It's been extremely reliable and fast but not everyone requires POE in their switch and EnGenius has that covered with the regular ECS2512. It has the same 8 2.5G ports, four 10G SFP+ ports, and works with EnGenius Cloud. Today I’m going to check the ECW2512 out and see what else it has to offer.

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Qnap TS-233

When it comes to protecting your data it is very easy to ignore things until you have a problem and frankly that is what most people do. But it doesn’t have to be that hard, at least to get basic protections in place. But for me protecting my data isn’t just backing things up. Protecting your data can also be about not opening your files up to the possibility of someone accessing them online, especially these days with everything having its own cloud. In addition to a NAS in your home giving you a central place to store important files, I’ve found that some brands have options that can give you similar features to many cloud-based services without monthly fees and without you uploading your files onto someone else’s servers. Qnap is one of those companies and one of their newest NAS the Qnap TS-233 is a compact 2-drive NAS for personal use that has the potential to allow you to do that at a lower cost and I’m curious to see how it compares to other options to today I’m going to check out the TS-233 and then put it through a few tests.

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Razer Viper V2 Pro

A 58-gram wireless mouse that doesn’t to that weight with the top and bottom of the mouse riddled with holes and isn’t a “mini” size? That is what Razer's new Viper v2 Pro is promising which is a big change from the 74 grams of the original wireless Viper Ultimate. It’s been interesting seeing Razer listening to the mouse enthusiast community where in the past they would dictate what people would want. The Viper lineup as a whole has been a great example of that and with this latest version, I’m curious to see what else they have changed so today I’m going to take a closer look at the Viper V2 Pro and then put it to the test. Let’s dive in!

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AnkerWork B600 Video Bar

You can go with a simple webcam like the AnkerWork PowerConf C200 that I recently reviewed and for a lot of people maybe that is all they need. But AnkerWork has other webcam options like the B600 Video Bar that I’m going to check out today that have integrated additional features. The B600 has speakers, lighting, more microphones, and integrates a few AI features as well. Looking at the spec sheet it comes off as an all-in-one studio. So I’m curious to find out what all the B600 Video Bar has to offer and see if it is worth the extra money that it demands so today I’m going to check it out.

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Wooting 60HE

One of my favorite things about the keyboard community is that people haven’t been afraid to come up with their own designs and even often bring their designs to life. This has created innovation and over the years a few of these have grown into full businesses. A great example of this would be Wooting which back in 2015 came up with their design for an analog keyboard which they later did a Kickstarter on and later released. Wooting has always been especially interesting to me because there aren’t many companies in the industry that are as open with their timelines and issues. Part of this comes from their Kickstarter roots, but they have always continued to update even on the software side. I’ve been looking forward to their latest keyboard the Wooting 60HE because I love 60% keyboards and today's the day after many issues that we can check out the Wooting 60HE so let’s dig in and see what it’s all about. 

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Anker PowerConf C200 Webcam

For many years when it came to webcams Logitech was nearly the only name you needed to worry about. Their C910 and later the C920 were the go-to option, but after that webcam innovation went stagnant. But with streaming growing in popularity and even more recently working from home due to the pandemic the need to have great quality desktop camera options have come into play again and a lot of companies have jumped into the game to spice things up. Anker, a popular name when it comes to charging options got into the webcam market last year and earlier this year they introduced their PowerConf C200 Webcam which has a 2k or 1440p resolution, a smaller size than their original 2k camera, and a lower price. I’m going to check out the C200 today to see how it performs and find out how it compares to the rest of the market.     

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Cooler Master XG850 Plus Platinum ARGB

While Cooler Master has been in the power supply game for a long time at this point, their most recently introduced mode the XG Plus Platinum is their first in-house designed platform. Having outside help for PSU design isn’t anything unusual but I am interested in seeing what Cooler Master is up to now that they have more of a hand in their designs. The XG Plus Platinum line is available in 650-watt, 750-watt, and 850-watt models and we have the 850-watt XG850 Plus Platinum ARGB on hand to check out today.

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FSP Dagger Pro 850W PSU

FSP originally announced their Dagger Pro line of SFX power supplies back in 2019 but last year they updated the lineup with a few more wattages. The original lineup was the Dagger Pro 550 and 650 and then last year they introduced the Dagger Pro 750 and the 850. I’m a little late to the party but we did get their Dagger Pro 850 in for us to check out and today I’m going to take a look at its features to see what it is all about. I’m a big fan of small form factor builds and having options in the true SFX size range for high wattages like this 850-watt model is huge so let’s see what it is all about.

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