funkyfresh computers and accessories

HP P6310Y Desktop PC Review

The HP P6310Y is a great choice for an everyday computer. The P6310Y comes loaded with Windows 7 Home Premium, Norton Antivirus, Microsoft Works 9.0 and a 90 day trial version of Microsoft Office. So it’s ready for the home office right out of the box. We we’re up and running with multiple applications and Pandora streaming music in the background in no time.

The motherboard leaves very little room for expansion but the good news is the P6310Y is loaded plenty of features to handle just about any application. There’s a 15-in-1 media for various types of flash memory, a dual layer DVD burner with LightScribe so you can etch labels into the discs your burn, 6GB or PC3-10600 memory, an Athlon II 630 quad-core processor, 1TB hard drive and NVIDIA GeForce 9100 graphics.

If you’re a hard core gamer or in need of 3D rendering power obviously this isn’t going to cut it but for casual gaming the P6310Y can hold its own. There’s plenty of power for editing home movies and making DVDs.

The HP P6310Y is a good choice for anyone that needs a new PC for all around computing tasks in the $600 price range. You may be able to find other systems with slightly better specifications for the money but HPs online support and frequently updated drivers make their systems worth considering.

Visit HP for more information.

Motorola SB6120 Extreme Cable Modem Review

The Motorola SB6120 cable modem is the next generation DOCSIS 3.0 compatible modem which provides a 4x speed improvement over DOCSIS 2.0 cable modems such as the original Surfboard series from Motorola.

We replaced a Motorola Surfboard SB5101 for this test. On the SB6120 Motorola moved the status lights to the side of the modem so when it’s placed in a wiring closet of a house it’s easy to check if it’s online or not without removing it. The older SB5101 requires you to remove it to check the status and the reset button could easiy be accidentally pressed. The SB6120 is a boxier design but only takes up slightly more space than the SB5101. It’s pretty much a straight swap although the SB5101 was easier to slide into tight spaces because of its wedge like shape.

The Initial setup took a bit longer than anticipated. The Motorola Extreme SB6120 takes longer to restart and get online but once it’s up and running is rock solid. The control panel and status indicators are very similar to previous designs. Basically, get it up and running and forget it.

At lower service speeds the improvement over the SB5101 is marginal. Of course, the real reason to upgrade the modem is to take advantage of the upper tiered Internet service offered by Comcast and others. After we had Comcast turn up the speed the SB6120 came to life.

If you frequently move large files via FTP, like to stream HD video,  or have lots of data on your systems you’re backing up via an online service such as Mozy than the SB6120 combined with a faster level of access is certainly worth considering. For general web use, email and sending the occasional photo…etc., you won’t see that much benefit.

Visit Motorola for more information.

Hawking HWREN1 Hi-Gain Wireless-300N Range Extender Review

The Hawking HWREN1 Hi-Gain Wireless-300N Range Extender works well to eliminate wireless dead zones in a home. Let’s say you have a wireless access point located centrally in your home but the signal strength is weak to some corners of the building such as the garage.

We tested the HWREN1 in an average size home and were impressed with the results. Systems that previously showed low quality connections before installing the HWREN1 reported good to excellent connectivity. FTP, audio/video streaming and sharing files on the network approached the performance and throughput of wired systems on the network. Can’t ask for much more than that.

Setup requires the included CD and is easy enough but there should have been more information about wireless channel selection and strategy when extending a wireless network. Having a quality wireless card in each PC accessing the network makes a big difference as well. We found dramatically different results with several cards so like anything else your wireless network is only as good as your weakest link.

The WHREN1 looks and feels very cheap but once it’s installed and out of sight you’ll quickly forget about that. It’s a good option for improving the wireless access in your home without a lot of cost.

Visit Hawking Technologies for more information.

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