Category Archives: Computing

Moments to Disaster: Hard Drive Failure & SMART Data

While I was away on holiday, blissfully enjoying my time outdoors, I wasn’t aware that a disaster was brewing at home. I got a message from my brother that his machine had started making a clicking noise, and it was … Continue reading

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USB Connector Resistance: Another reason for slow phone/tablet charging

It was back in 2014 when I first published about USB cable resistance as one reason why your phone or tablet might be charging slowly. At the time, quality cables with good gauge wires were hard to find, and many … Continue reading

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Review, Teardown: Mi Power Bank Pro 10000mAh QC3.0 (PLM03ZM)

At the beginning of the year, I took at trip which included visiting Hong Kong where I managed to pick up a Mi Power Bank Pro and review it. At the end of the review, I expressed the futility of … Continue reading

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Teardown: Generic CX-FU02+ USB SoftV92 Data Fax HSF Modem

My tech shopping in Hong Kong continues with more goodies. One of the things I was on the lookout for was the last of the dial-up modem. Rather unsurprisingly, for such an advanced country, it’s almost impossible to find any … Continue reading

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Random: Tech Shopping in Hong Kong – A Treasure Hunt?

When many people go overseas, one of the things they most look forward to is to do some shopping. I’m generally not like that – I absolutely abhor shopping. But there is one exception – tech shopping. This year, I’ve … Continue reading

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Repair, Teardown: Edimax IC-1520DP Network Camera

A long time ago … maybe even eight years ago in 2009 … a computer shop I was shopping at had a network camera on sale for the low low price of AU$30 and I decided to buy it just … Continue reading

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Problem: Agilent Technologies U1173A Compatibility with Windows 10

For Christmas in 2014, I decided to get myself a decent multimeter which could do data logging. This turned out to be the Agilent U1241B, along with a U1173A for USB to IR connectivity. At the time, the cable was … Continue reading

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Review: Seagate Skyhawk Surveillance 8Tb Hard Drive (ST8000VX0022)

No matter how much storage you have, given enough time, you’ll always need more. As part of my new build, I decided to follow my standard procedure of upgrading part of my storage to larger, new drives for increased speed, … Continue reading

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Quick Review: Samsung 960 EVO 1Tb M.2 NVMe SSD (MZ-V6E1T0)

I’m sure by now that you don’t need convincing that the Samsung 960-series M.2 NVMe SSDs are awesome drives. Just looking at SSD market share alone, Samsung takes the cake, and the 960 are used almost universally among high performance … Continue reading

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Farewell: TBS TBS6925 Professional PCIe Satellite Tuner Card

As a hobbyist with an interest in chasing satellite feeds, my TBS TBS6925 Professional Satellite Tuner Card was my dependable companion. Around AU$250 a piece, I purchased two back in 2011 and two years later, got around to reviewing it. … Continue reading

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Project: A Major Upgrade to My Workstation

Over the past two years, I’ve been seriously thinking about upgrading my workstation for a number of reasons. Despite this, I could never actually make the commitment, as my computing needs are quite high and the investment would be sizeable. … Continue reading

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An Incomplete Repair: BladeRF x40 Software-Defined Radio

My last trip to Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong kept me away from home for 80 days, in which time I thoroughly enjoyed doing things I couldn’t otherwise do from home. Despite arriving back home almost a month ago, it … Continue reading

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Visited: SMPTE 2017 Exhibition Sydney (18 – 21 July)

After returning from my first long-solo-trip, I decided to spend two months “decompressing” and getting ready for my next trip. Part of the reason was so I could attend CeBIT, Vivid Sydney and SMPTE Exhibition. The last time I went … Continue reading

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Review: Sandisk Ultra UHS-I 128Gb microSDXC Card (Up to 80MB/s)

At the beginning of this year, I posted about a relatively new (less than a year old) Sandisk Ultra UHS-I/Class 10 microSDXC card of the 80MB/s variety which had a data loss issue. Rather unfortunately for me, I had some … Continue reading

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Tech Flashback: External IDE HDD – USB 2.0 vs Firewire 400 (IEEE 1394)

When I originally decided to repair the power supply for the Cooler Master Xcraft external enclosure, my first thought was just to do it because of the sheer utility value of having such an enclosure around. But then I realized, … Continue reading

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Analysis: Freeview Sydney (18 April 2017) after SBS moves to HD MPEG-4

While I was on holidays, the DVB-T digital TV stations at home were undergoing the last of a series of long-anticipated changes. On 8th April 2017, SBS followed the lead of the other broadcasters and finally converted over to MPEG-4 … Continue reading

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Repair: Cooler Master Xcraft 3.5″ External HDD Enclosure PSU (SKA-0512-20B)

When I get a little time, I like to go through the “donation” pile and do some testing. As it turns out, I was gifted a set of four Cooler Master Xcraft External Hard Drive Enclosures along with matching power … Continue reading

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Quick Review, Teardown: Transcend RDF9K UHS-II USB 3.1/3.0 Card Reader

When I go overseas on travel, shopping tends to be the last thing on my mind. Coming in with almost-overflowing baggage, there’s not much chance to buy anything. After all, if I’m overseas, there’s a good chance I’ve already spent … Continue reading

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Review: Toshiba Exceria N301 64Gb SDXC & Samsung Evo+ 128Gb microSDXC

It’s been a while since I last reviewed some flash memory. After all, if you already have enough cards, there isn’t really much reason to get more unless the price is great. Regrettably, on my recent holiday, I managed to … Continue reading

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Experiment: 8Gb USB Flash Drive Endurance Test

Flash memory is, and has been, a commodity item for a while now. Almost everyone has at least a few USB flash drives (sticks) and maybe even a few memory cards. When it comes to rapidly transferring large files between … Continue reading

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Project: THE (large) COLLECTION of V.34 Modem Sounds

After my posting of the definitive collection of V.90 modem sounds, a number of people got in touch with me with a few of them requesting the same to be done with V.34 connections. At first, I didn’t see the … Continue reading

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Review: Logitech Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard & Mouse (K380 & M337)

Some of my readers have noted that it’s been a while since I last made a blog posting. This is mainly because I’ve been extremely busy trying to prepare everything for my upcoming holiday. As I mentioned previously in this … Continue reading

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US Fax Test Services: HP, Brother and Canon

The death of voiceband modem communications is slowly but surely happening. I started Project Fax in recognition of this, as a way to remember one of the technologies, but sadly from the few faxes I have received, it seems I … Continue reading

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Data Recovery: Kingmax Pro 32Gb microSDHC – A Sign of TLC Weakness?

If you think I’m not having much luck with microSD cards lately, you’d be right. The first issue for the year was the Sandisk 128Gb microSDXC card having some unreadable sectors causing the loss of some files. Now, I’ve had … Continue reading

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Failing: Sandisk Ultra microSDXC 128Gb (Class 10, UHS-I, Up to 80MB/s)

The new year just keeps getting better. Sure, the battery in the phone is failing, but the microSDXC card as well?! The Culprit The culprit was a Sandisk Ultra microSDXC card of 128Gb capacity, Class 10, UHS-I rated up to … Continue reading

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Happy New Year: Sydney Fireworks Broadcast Side-by-Side Comparison

Happy New Year! Lets start this year off by taking a look at the new year’s eve fireworks broadcast. This year, just like last year, the televised transmission of the Sydney Harbour new year’s eve fireworks was done by the … Continue reading

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Salvage Season: Pt 6 – Old I/O Boards & Fluorescent Starters

It’s new year’s eve, and I’m back with the last part of the salvage season posts. Just as well, since salvage season is coming to an end as the year is coming to an end. This post looks at some … Continue reading

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Salvage Season: Pt 3 – Other Computer Hardware

After taking a short breather to prepare all the images for the upcoming few posts, the salvages continue. This part is concerned with “other” computer hardware that I managed to snag. Some of it remains untested, primarily due to a … Continue reading

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Salvage Season: Pt 2 – Intel X25-M 160Gb SSD

In this day and age, SSDs are becoming quite ubiquitous for their performance benefits and many systems come with them pre-installed. But not too many years back, SSDs were considered performance items for enthusiasts, commanding high price-tags. Hobbyists like myself … Continue reading

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Salvage Season: Pt 1 – Hard Drives

To all my readers – a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all, or alternatively, Happy Holidays or Merry *mas … It’s that time of the year again where we’re counting down to the end and people are … Continue reading

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