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Old 03-18-2020, 04:58 AM   #4361
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Scored these from the dumpster lol

Gigabyte H55M-USB3 - bent pins fixed, but seems it has some short on 12V and a few FETs missing, hope I can fix it with FETs from dead R9 280 (bad GPU, but the mosfets are good)

Intel Core i3 550 3.2GHz - came with the mobo, tested good in a H55M-S2V I had.
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Old 03-19-2020, 07:13 PM   #4362
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Cool Dell Precision T7500 WS

So... I've always been curious to try one of them off-lease government/research center workstations - particularly the Dell Precision ones, like T3400, T3500, and etc.

Early last week, I found a good eBay deal on a Dell Precision T7500 workstation and asked seller if I can do local pickup, since it wasn't that far away from where I live (otherwise, the shipping would have been a killer, costing more than the station itself, lol.)

So, for about $40, including the price of gas, I got this:
Dell Precision T7500
CPU: dual Xeon E5605 (socket 1366, onboard + riser card)
RAM: 8 GB PC3L-10600R dual-channel (triple channel possible)
GPU: Dell Radeon HD8490 1GD3 (meh... but good enough for a test card)
PSU: stock 1100 Watt Delta 80+ Silver
Optical: standard SATA DVD-R/RW

No HDD or anything else was included. But for that price, I really can't complain. Many T7500 stations on eBay don't even include a CPU riser card / 2nd CPU... and the ones that do typically easily start at 2-3x the price. So that was the catch for me with this one when I saw it - the second CPU/riser card, which was shown in the pictures but not specifically mentioned in the auction.

I drove out last Friday (a little less than 1 hour away) and brought it home. I did look up videos and info on the T7500 before that, and some did mention it is a bit on the "larger" side. Still, I figured it should fit under my desk nevertheless. It doesn't:

(As a comparison, that is a Dell XPS 8700 m-ATX case "mini-tower" on the right.)

So I'll have to make some room for it elsewhere, eventually... which is okay for now, because I'm still only playing with its stock config right now. However, I do plan on getting 2x hex core CPUs for it and more RAM. Then a better GPU (have two workmates who say they have some old cards they want to sell, so we will see - one is offering a GTX 980 Ti, the other a GTX 1050 Ti.) Another project for another day, though.

I did a quick CPU stress test, and even with the two 80W TDP E5605 CPUs, it's quite power-hungry, drawing around 200W from the wall. With a higher-end video card, I think this one might be more suited towards winter-time use when I need heat in the house.

I also got a few more good scores on the following day after picking up the station from CLs, but I'll put that in the next post and when I have more time to go through that stuff.
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Old 03-19-2020, 07:30 PM   #4363
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

^
Not bad. You can up that to 2x hexa cores @ 3.46 or 2x quads @ 3.6. IIRC, they have 12 RAM slots, max at 192 officially, 384 unofficially. Great system for...say a M6000 24gb GPU!
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Old 03-19-2020, 11:54 PM   #4364
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Default Re: Dell Precision T7500 WS

Quote:
Originally Posted by momaka View Post
So I'll have to make some room for it elsewhere, eventually... which is okay for now, because I'm still only playing with its stock config right now. However, I do plan on getting 2x hex core CPUs for it and more RAM. Then a better GPU (have two workmates who say they have some old cards they want to sell, so we will see - one is offering a GTX 980 Ti, the other a GTX 1050 Ti.) Another project for another day, though.
You may want to look at the bracket that holds the cards in place before settling on video cards. I had to modify mine to accommodate the coolers on the cards.

You might also find a "base" for the machine that makes it a bit more stable (esp on a carpeted floor). Most are sold without it.

There is also an optional fan for the disk array (but it is located outboard of the machine).

[I scrapped my four machines in favor of the Z800's]
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Old 03-20-2020, 07:30 PM   #4365
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
^
Not bad. You can up that to 2x hexa cores @ 3.46 or 2x quads @ 3.6. IIRC, they have 12 RAM slots, max at 192 officially, 384 unofficially. Great system for...say a M6000 24gb GPU!
Well, I probably won't find a M6000 for an affordable price anytime soon... unlike some other people here.
But in all honesty, that's just fine by me, as I'd rather get a "consumer" / "gamer" video card, and preferably something from the last generation that still had analog output (remember, I also have one of those 24" Sony CRTs... so you can see where that is going now )

As for the CPUs... I'm eyeing a pair of E5649's right now - mid-range hex cores, but still at 80W TDP each (same as current CPUs I have), so I can re-use the same heatsinks and not worry about the CPUs running hot or pushing out too much heat in my room. Also, these seem to be going for a good price. The high-end hex-cores tend to get a bit more pricey.

And RAM? I think 24 GB (12x2 GB) should cover me for the next few years (maybe even a decade, if I relegate this PC to non-gaming use.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
You may want to look at the bracket that holds the cards in place before settling on video cards. I had to modify mine to accommodate the coolers on the cards.
Thanks for the tip.
Yes, I think I remember reading somewhere that someone also ran into this issue. That said, I don't see the bracket on mine... so maybe it got removed (or I am just blind.)
Not to worried about this, though. Will indeed modify it, if needed. Or make my own mechanism and remove the existing bracket if I want to keep it all original again.

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Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
You might also find a "base" for the machine that makes it a bit more stable (esp on a carpeted floor). Most are sold without it.
Yup, I got carpet. But we put hardwood floors everywhere, underneath. I just elected to put the carpet back in my bedroom, as it tends to reduce noise (and room echo) quite a bit. So this carpet doesn't give in that much.

Also, more than likely, I will probably have to break down my "tower state building" of PCs (6 PCs stacked in 3 columns) and sandwich this one in there somewhere, then get rid of another tower. So with all of those PCs, it will be unlikely to tip over. Maybe if we had a strong earthquake here... which isn't really a thing on the East coast.

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Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
There is also an optional fan for the disk array (but it is located outboard of the machine).
Not sure if that's the same one, but there is a fan located between the 4 HDD caddies. 80 mm, if I'm not mistaken. Should offer plenty of cooling. Actually, I'm thinking of going with an SSD in this machine (at least initially)... which is a shame, since SSDs are all 2.5" and I won't really see/take advantage of the HDD cooling.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
I scrapped my four machines in favor of the Z800's]
Yeah, I can understand why. These Dells take quite a bit of space. And nowadays, technology has shrunk down so much that you can get a much smaller desktop to do almost anything you need with much smaller footprint and lower power consumption.
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Old 03-20-2020, 08:24 PM   #4366
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
Well, I probably won't find a M6000 for an affordable price anytime soon... unlike some other people here.
But in all honesty, that's just fine by me, as I'd rather get a "consumer" / "gamer" video card, and preferably something from the last generation that still had analog output (remember, I also have one of those 24" Sony CRTs... so you can see where that is going now )
From experience, I can tell you that GTX970's do have 1 full DVI port that is Analog-capable (used on a similar system with such a card, run on my test setup which uses my 24" FD Trintron). I also happen to have a spare one (EVGA SSC) in my drawer, leftover from a failed SLI experiment... but I might upgrade one my other systems to free it's clone and save them for a worthy SLI-able board I have sitting. Maybe.
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Old 03-21-2020, 01:39 AM   #4367
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by momaka View Post
Yup, I got carpet. But we put hardwood floors everywhere, underneath. I just elected to put the carpet back in my bedroom, as it tends to reduce noise (and room echo) quite a bit. So this carpet doesn't give in that much.
I scrounged some shelves out of a bookcase as they are ~30" long and about 10" wide -- just enough to slide under a machine. Also makes it easier to drag a machine "out" a few inches to reach behind it.

Quote:
Not sure if that's the same one, but there is a fan located between the 4 HDD caddies. 80 mm, if I'm not mistaken. Should offer plenty of cooling. Actually, I'm thinking of going with an SSD in this machine (at least initially)... which is a shame, since SSDs are all 2.5" and I won't really see/take advantage of the HDD cooling.
This fan sits OUTSIDE the machine -- bolted onto the back with a sort of "chassis extension". Check BIOS settings to see if there is one for the "disk fan" -- which is this external fan, NOT the one wedged between the disk drives.

Quote:
Yeah, I can understand why. These Dells take quite a bit of space. And nowadays, technology has shrunk down so much that you can get a much smaller desktop to do almost anything you need with much smaller footprint and lower power consumption.
The Z800's are only a *little* smaller. Still takes two hands and a strong back to lift them. (the Z800's have "handles" built into the case to make it easy to lug them)

Desktops don't have 1000+W power supplies, can't support 4 internal drives plus three "external", multiple interface cards (SCSI HBA, SAS HBA, GPIB), etc. I only use desktop machines for "word processing" type uses.
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Old 03-21-2020, 07:38 AM   #4368
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

that T7500 is fucking ugly,
what the hell happened to servers looking like industrial devices instead of cheap stereo systems!!
if i had one of those i'd be compelled to throw the front plastic away and *maybe* fab something from aluminium or mesh.
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Old 03-21-2020, 08:04 AM   #4369
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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Originally Posted by stj View Post
that T7500 is fucking ugly,
what the hell happened to servers looking like industrial devices instead of cheap stereo systems!!
if i had one of those i'd be compelled to throw the front plastic away and *maybe* fab something from aluminium or mesh.
That's not a server....those were intended as workstations....and Dell workstations have a long history of being 'plasticy'....
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Old 03-21-2020, 10:27 AM   #4370
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Welp, I got the 24 GB of RAM for the T7500: all for ~$20 shipped (less than $1/GB, so pretty decent deal, IMO.) Will get the CPUs later. Want (curious) to see how the current ones do in modern games/benchmarks first. Obviously for desktop use and multimedia (only tested YouTube HD 1080p 60Hz), it's not sweat at all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
From experience, I can tell you that GTX970's do have 1 full DVI port that is Analog-capable
Yes, GTX 900 series was the last line to have analog output (and from the GTX 1000 series, I think only a few select 1030 models do, as perhaps maybe some 1050's?) From ATI/AMD, it was the R7 and R9 series... and even then, not all top-range R9 series have full DVI-I + DVI-D port, so have to be careful.

I'm keeping my eye open on eBay right now to see what prices are like.
Already have an R9 290, but it's artifacting (bought it that way for cheap... but looking online, seems to be a common thing with these cards, so I'm not very hopeful that a reflow will revive it and much less have it usable long term.) So might try going with something more upper mid-range or lower high-range from that era (i.e. R9 270/X, GTX 960/970).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
but I might upgrade one my other systems to free it's clone and save them for a worthy SLI-able board I have sitting. Maybe.
I wouldn't bother with SLI. It's a thing of the past now. Hardly anyone does it anymore, because the price/performance is pretty low. Not to mention it's a power hog and most games aren't even optimized for it (multi-GPU) anymore.

SLI/Crossfire is only good for a "cool" factor anymore.

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Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
I scrounged some shelves out of a bookcase as they are ~30" long and about 10" wide -- just enough to slide under a machine. Also makes it easier to drag a machine "out" a few inches to reach behind it.
I was thinking of doing something similar in regards to building my own "rack". That way, I can remove PCs from the bottom row without having to remove a PC from the top one. It's a PITA if I have to remove one right now. As a result, I haven't properly vacuumed the area behind those PCs in years (save for quick vacuum with a hose and brush.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curious.George View Post
The Z800's are only a *little* smaller. Still takes two hands and a strong back to lift them. (the Z800's have "handles" built into the case to make it easy to lug them)
Well, isn't that handy.

Originally, I was planning to go with a T3500 (or maybe at most T5500 single-CPU), as there are a lot of folks online showing those with a single high-end CPU (and OC-ing through software) rivaling modern-day mid-range CPUs for a fraction of the cost. But instead of one fast CPU, I decided to go with 2 slower CPUs with more cores. Hence snatching the T7500 when I saw it. Games nowadays are usually optimized for multi-core CPUs quite well, so I figured it's a bit more "future-proof". (But really, it's ridiculous IMO how much resources some "modern" games need to run decently. It's almost mind-boggling how inefficient/not optimized software is nowadays. Ah well... /RANT)

Quote:
Originally Posted by stj View Post
that T7500 is fucking ugly,
what the hell happened to servers looking like industrial devices instead of cheap stereo systems!!
if i had one of those i'd be compelled to throw the front plastic away and *maybe* fab something from aluminium or mesh.
Lol.
The silver piece on that T7500 front IS actually aluminum , and pretty thick too. And the rest is not that plastic-y at all, especially when compared to their consumer stuff.

Now, the Dell Studio XPS case you see on the right in that image I uploaded (which BTW does NOT hold Dell XPS guts at all - I wish it did, as an i7 would be nice to have around)... THAT is plastic-fantastic land! Don't ask how I know. That PC was completely filthy with dust and possibly had roaches/bed bugs. So after keeping everything outside one winter for a week or two at -15C, I took the whole front of that PC apart and hand-washed every little plastic piece. Taking that apart was a challenge, as there were at least 3 or 4 "layers" of plastics and bezels, all held with incredibly-tight plastic tabs. Whoever drew all those pieces in AutoCAD (or whatever 3D software) really must have nothing else to do on their job, because the complexity of that front is mind-blowing. It's absolutely unnecessary. And the sliding front cover/door for the front USB ports easily breaks down, so it's not even made well.

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Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
That's not a server....those were intended as workstations....and Dell workstations have a long history of being 'plasticy'....
Not as bad as their desktops, though!
That said, the OptiPlex 760/790 (and I think also OptiPlex 3010) "mini-towers" are actually pretty modest with the front panel and not that plastic-y at all. The OptiPlex 755 (P4/PD/C2D -era) and similar weren't too bad either. But the older OptiPlex and Dimension from the s478 P4 era... ugh, yeah, those had a ton of plastic. HP was in a similar boat more or less (the P3 and P4 era were horrible when it came to that.)

But if you really want plastic-fantastic, one word: Gateway!

At least they all used decent steel thickness back in the day. Now it's all tin-can grade stuff with laptop-like "motherboards" inside.

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Old 03-21-2020, 11:09 AM   #4371
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

who doesn't love the gx150 plastic plastic design that the xbox 360 copied.
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Old 03-21-2020, 11:33 AM   #4372
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Quote:
Originally Posted by momaka View Post
I was thinking of doing something similar in regards to building my own "rack". That way, I can remove PCs from the bottom row without having to remove a PC from the top one. It's a PITA if I have to remove one right now. As a result, I haven't properly vacuumed the area behind those PCs in years (save for quick vacuum with a hose and brush.)
If you have space for a rack, you can likely pick one up at a local auction for < $50 (often, folks just want to be rid of them as they are so large). I'm looking for 4 12U racks to set under my bed (foolishly, I gave away several of them many years ago cuz I wanted "to be rid of them as they are so large")

[handles -- see attached]

Quote:
Well, isn't that handy.
It is almost essential. You will learn after lugging the T7500 around a bit. My Z800's are just about 65 pounds, each. The T7500 is pretty close to that, IIRC. (and, nothing to really grab onto -- though you can slip one hand under the power supply at the rear as a sort-of handle and let the front of the machine lean on your chest)

Quote:
Originally, I was planning to go with a T3500 (or maybe at most T5500 single-CPU), as there are a lot of folks online showing those with a single high-end CPU (and OC-ing through software) rivaling modern-day mid-range CPUs for a fraction of the cost. But instead of one fast CPU, I decided to go with 2 slower CPUs with more cores. Hence snatching the T7500 when I saw it. Games nowadays are usually optimized for multi-core CPUs quite well, so I figured it's a bit more "future-proof". (But really, it's ridiculous IMO how much resources some "modern" games need to run decently. It's almost mind-boggling how inefficient/not optimized software is nowadays. Ah well... /RANT)
Insider secret regarding software: all software is based on caching (even on machines without hardware cache). You want to hold onto everything that you can -- and, ideally, precompute everything you can -- instead of having to do so on-the-fly.

Quote:
Lol.
The silver piece on that T7500 front IS actually aluminum , and pretty thick too. And the rest is not that plastic-y at all, especially when compared to their consumer stuff.
Were it not for the size of the machine, you could set it on its side and put a 25" CRT on the case! Try that with some other machine...

(I used to keep SUA1200's on top of mine; one UPS per computer)



Quote:
Now, the Dell Studio XPS case you see on the right in that image I uploaded (which BTW does NOT hold Dell XPS guts at all - I wish it did, as an i7 would be nice to have around)... THAT is plastic-fantastic land! Don't ask how I know. That PC was completely filthy with dust and possibly had roaches/bed bugs. So after keeping everything outside one winter for a week or two at -15C, I took the whole front of that PC apart and hand-washed every little plastic piece. Taking that apart was a challenge, as there were at least 3 or 4 "layers" of plastics and bezels, all held with incredibly-tight plastic tabs. Whoever drew all those pieces in AutoCAD (or whatever 3D software) really must have nothing else to do on their job, because the complexity of that front is mind-blowing. It's absolutely unnecessary. And the sliding front cover/door for the front USB ports easily breaks down, so it's not even made well.
The T7500 is somewhat similar -- though not as flimsy. The front bezel comes off with GENTLY released tabs located on the accessible side (once the side panel is removed). (optical) Drives slide in and out on neat little sleds. And, because the box is so frigging HUGE, there's room for your hands to access the interconnects, inside.

(though there is a fair bit of power wiring that "hides" in a pocket in the sidewall)

IIRC, there are also hooks to add a USB card reader in an optical bay (8 pin USB header on mobo?). And, a floppy drive.
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Old 03-22-2020, 02:07 PM   #4373
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

More free scores:

ASRock Z97 Extreme 6 - typical problem where it starts for a split second with 00 post code and then powers off. There's no short.

Celeron G1820 2.7GHz LGA1150 - came with the board

Gigabyte Radeon HD7870 2GB GDDR5 OC Windforce - tested on a FM2 machine. Works great.
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Old 04-04-2020, 12:22 AM   #4374
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Ugh! I'd told my "usual suppliers" that I wasn't keen on taking in any kit while all this crap is happening...

But, found six iPad Pro 3rds sitting on the front porch, this evening. (sigh) Cleaned/sanitized them and checked batteries (an iPad with a bad battery is a paperweight). All look good.

I'll verify there is nothing left on them and then pass them along to a group that can get them into someone's hands that can make use of them.

[I don't use any Apple kit]
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Old 04-05-2020, 01:15 AM   #4375
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But, found six iPad Pro 3rds sitting on the front porch, this evening.
<frown> Apparently, that was the first of FIVE such boxes! Cripes, this is going to take a while -- a LONG while -- to get sorted out...

Maybe I should just move them out to the garage and deal with them later (lots of "paying work" to get out of the way, first)
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:15 AM   #4376
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Scored a free ASUS Radeon HD4850 512MB GDDR3 (256bit).


If I'd tell you the issue that this card had, you'd be all rolling on the floor laughing.
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Old 04-06-2020, 08:56 AM   #4377
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

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<frown> Apparently, that was the first of FIVE such boxes! Cripes, this is going to take a while -- a LONG while -- to get sorted out...

Maybe I should just move them out to the garage and deal with them later (lots of "paying work" to get out of the way, first)
so are they iPad 3rd generations the old 30 pin or newer iPad pros because the pro didn't come out till 2015 and a 3rd generation pro would be the all screen ipad without the home button. Ive been looking for a cheap 4th gen ipad since my 4th gen suddenly died.
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Old 04-06-2020, 09:07 AM   #4378
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Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

The well has been dry the last few weeks...... :-/
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:52 PM   #4379
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so are they iPad 3rd generations the old 30 pin or newer iPad pros because the pro didn't come out till 2015 and a 3rd generation pro would be the all screen ipad without the home button. Ive been looking for a cheap 4th gen ipad since my 4th gen suddenly died.
No HOME button. And, seems bigger than the iPads I've seen in the past (like maybe 13" instead of ~10?)
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Old 04-06-2020, 01:54 PM   #4380
Curious.George
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,108
Default Re: best cheap/free scores 1.1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
The well has been dry the last few weeks...... :-/
Use the time to SHED stuff! I'm normally busy finding places to stash stuff and am enjoying the "lull" to look over the "mess" and see what I can discard!
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