Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Built a new PC and jumped into Ryzen ship

It's been a very long time since I've posted something, so here goes.

In December 2018, I built a new PC because I just wanted to. The old one wasn't terribly slow or anything. Just wanted to have some fun.

This time I went with an AMD CPU. Last time I had an AMD chip was in 2006.

Not all parts were brand new though. The video card and the display were bought from Overclockers Australia trade forums second hand.


New parts
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 2700 3.2 GHz
  • CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15S
  • Motherboard: MSI B450 GAMING PRO CARBON AC
  • Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CMK16GX4M2Z3200C16
  • Storage: Samsung 970 Evo 500 GB SSD
  • Case: Fractal Design Meshify C
  • Power Supply: SeaSonic FOCUS Plus Gold 850 W
Second-hand parts
  • Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 1080 GAMING X 8G
  • Monitor: Asus PG279Q ROG Swift 27.0" 2560x1440 165 Hz (I've added a second monitor since then)
  • Case Fans: Fractal Design X2 GP-12 (x2)
Old parts
  • Keyboard: Corsair K70 LUX
  • Mouse: Logitech G602 Wireless (I've upgraded it since then along with the mousepad)
  • Headphones: Audio-Technica ATH-AD500X
  • Storage: Western Digital Green 4TB  x2

I have never won the silicon lottery and it's same this time too. The CPU barely goes past 4GHz without ludicrous volts. The GPU core also doesn't overclock that much. So are the memory. Not the happiest camper, but love the change.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Hit the kerb

Today was a very sunny day indicating to us that the winter is coming to an end. We were planning to go out to a place nearby, but my son wanted to go to the beach. We picked St. Kilda beach.

It was not too bad, but I wished it was a bit warmer. The water was cold and hardly anyone was in the water.

The route Waze picked for me back home was not familiar to me at all. It routed me through many small streets. Turning to one of those streets, I hit the kerb and hit it hard. I didn't realise how narrow the street was!

Thankfully, the wheels are steel and it didn't damage the wheel. If it was an alloy wheel, I bet I would have to change the wheel. That would have been painful because it was already dark.

But the impact damaged the wheel hub.

Although it is an eyesore for me, I won't be replacing the wheel hub right now because brand new OEM hubs cost about $45 on Ebay. Super Cheap Auto is selling 4 piece hab caps for cheaper, so I might pay them a visit. Perhaps they have hub caps that show less of the ugly steel especially with that slight rust. That would be a win after all.

Decided to finally do something about the MacBook Air's battery

Since buying the Metabox N850HJ laptop, I had been using it as my primary computer. Yes, I didn't use the desktop PC as much as the Metabox laptop.

My wife has been using the aging MacBook Air. She hasn't been treating it well though. Its battery was in a very bad shape, and she doesn't keep it charged. So every time she wants to work on it, we have to first let it charge for a few minutes, otherwise, it would be very sluggish. I started observing this behaviour after upgrading to macOS Sierra. After upgrading to High Sierra, it is still behaving the same way.

This is the current state of the battery. It only holds 30% of the original capacity. It's funny how it says it's only done 713 charge cycles. I thought the battery was good for 1000 charge cycles before degrading seriously.

This could well be the last MacBook I would own because I cannot justify spending Apple prices. So I decided to buy a replacement battery for it. Apple would charge $189 for their "battery service" which I think includes a new battery but I wouldn't be surprised it didn't. I didn't want to pay that much especially for a 7-year-old laptop, so I went on eBay and ordered a cheap compatible battery. I don't expect it to be as good as a genuine OEM battery, but if it gives me several hours of battery power without blowing up, I would be happy.

The battery should arrive next week and this will the first time I open up a MacBook Air. Hope I don't kill it.

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