Make SPCR Even Better... and Win Great Prizes!

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MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Fri May 09, 2008 7:21 am

D-Three wrote:So citizens from outside Canada and the US are also able to win?
There were never any exclusions. In fact, it said..."Anyone can enter to win from the following prizes"
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

ridegd
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Post by ridegd » Fri May 09, 2008 7:44 am

MikeC wrote: Astonishingly, perhaps because so much traffic comes from search engines, publishing new articles infrequently doesn't impact unique visitor traffic much, tho pageviews can go up. I recall a crazy-busy crisis period some time ago when no new articles were posted for over 2 weeks -- and traffic patterns hardly changed. :shock:

I guess that's what you get when the existing content is just as useful as upcoming content. :) I bet it takes SPCR a lot longer to get obsolete than other tech sites, since a lot of it is about ideas rather than news.

And since one SPCR review is worth 100 reviews from other sites, I can't wait to see more fans and PSUs and cases reviewed in the new floating chamber! (Eg the NMB-MATs, since they claim ultra-unbelievable specs.)
MikeC wrote: One more detail -- some 2/3s of visitors don't ever make it to the forums.

Most tech site forums are about trolling and corporate PR, no wonder people stopped using them... (Not here of course, save SilenX :) )
MikeC wrote: Paypal is not a fantastic service, I agree, but there aren't too many alternatives that can be used internationally.
Yeah they could be better, but once you get started it's pretty OK... and I like to think my money is quite safe with them. You also get eBay fraud insurance which is a huge plus!

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Fri May 09, 2008 9:35 am

ridegd wrote:BTW I didn't mean to say that anyone has to feel bad about not donating, not at all, really... I was just fascinated by the statistics, that's all.
No offense taken, I just wanted to moan about how unfair it it is for us (=me) :).
I never thought SPCR would gather that much money this quickly, and I never though SPCR fans are such a small percentage of all site visitors.
To put it another way: I always though most SPCR visitors were major geeks/techies (or whatever is the least offensive) who are mad about this site :)
I'm not the least bit surprised. There has been an income poll on the forums, so I knew that quite many here have very good income. Not that it's surprising. I already knew from the quality of posts, that people here are well educated.
As for PayPal: I don't mean to be a smartass, but you don't have to have a credit card - all you need is a bank account. (At least that's how it is in the UK.) However, in that case all PayPal transfers will be sent as eCheques, which is slower than an international bank transfer...
(When I opened my PayPal account I was really unhappy with the amount of help and the quality of FAQs on PayPal's site. I had to use google and personal experience to find out about the types of transactions etc.)
Thanks for clearing this up. I went to PayPal's site this morning and watched "What is PayPal?" demo video. Well it was mostly marketing, but they never mentioned cash transfers, it was all about credit cards. So I was like meh and ditched the whole idea. IBAN transfers have been enough for me so far, but it's good to know, that I can use PayPal, if I want to.

And thanks for ruining my excuse :twisted:, now I have to appeal to my student status! And to general lack of incentives, namely our tax system. And, I probably should just keep my mouth shut, but status of lifetime patron just ain't as prestigious as it was before the lottery was introduced. Donating money when you have nothing to gain is just bit nobler. Exponentially growing numbers also inflate the status. Please don't ban me :oops:.
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nutball
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Post by nutball » Fri May 09, 2008 9:44 am

Erssa wrote:And, I probably should just keep my mouth shut, but status of lifetime patron just ain't as prestigious as it was before the lottery was introduced. Donating money when you have nothing to gain is just bit nobler. Exponentially growing numbers also inflate the status. Please don't ban me :oops:.
Don't worry about it. I donated $100 regardless of the lottery, and I didn't qualify for the special patron thing, presumably because the dollar is so weak against the pound.

I just like the idea of a place on the internet which is a centre-of-excellence, rather than the usual centre-of-meh that most other places are when it comes to testing. Given the amount of money I've wasted on poor "quiet" components I see it as an investment too :)

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Fri May 09, 2008 9:49 am

nutball wrote:Don't worry about it. I donated $100 regardless of the lottery, and I didn't qualify for the special patron thing, presumably because the dollar is so weak against the pound.
Really? :shock:

Check your email. It's probably just an oversight by me.

EDIT: confirmed, promoted to LP status. :wink:
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

D-Three
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Post by D-Three » Fri May 09, 2008 1:31 pm

MikeC wrote:
D-Three wrote:So citizens from outside Canada and the US are also able to win?
There were never any exclusions. In fact, it said..."Anyone can enter to win from the following prizes"
I'm sorry, I just wondered because in many contests "everybody can win" if they live in the US or Canada ;) By the way, I just logged in to PayPal with the intention of doing another small contribution (don't tell my wife ;)) when I noticed my previous donation was done to mikec@silentpcreview.com instead of donate@silentpcreview.com. Can both be used for the "make-SPCR-even-better-program"?

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Fri May 09, 2008 2:47 pm

D-Three wrote:Can both be used for the make-SPCR-even-better-program"?
Yesirree, said the TV evangelist preacher, yoah money's welcome to either pocket. :lol:

Seriously, it does go into the same acc. Used only for SPCR stuff.
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Sat May 10, 2008 6:50 am

Original post updated:
May 10, 7:30am Pacific: They say the last mile is the toughest in a marathon; that's the way the last few days feel. :lol:! We made great progress until we broke $9000 a few days ago. Since then, it's been a crawl, and we're still at $9700! I was predicting we'd break $10,000 3 days ago... but no predictions now. Let's just do it people!

Great thanks to the 214 generous people whose contributions in the past 23 days to bring us here. You represent less than 0.2% of unique visitors to SPCR over this period; you are the crème de la crème!

Congratulations to the winners in the first draw, and good luck to everyone in the second draw, which is just 2 more days away! Contribute at least $25 for a chance to win.

NOTE: 107 individuals have qualified for the second giveaway prize draw which began May 1. With 14 prizes, your chances of winning are currently about 1 in 7.
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

D-Three
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Post by D-Three » Sat May 10, 2008 6:57 am

Ok, donated another $50. Every bit helps ;)

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Sat May 10, 2008 7:08 am

D-Three wrote:Ok, donated another $50. Every bit helps ;)

unexpected but very cool. thank you! 8)
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

psyopper
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Post by psyopper » Sat May 10, 2008 7:31 am

$25 sent, sourced from the US "Save our Economy" fund. Glad it's going to a Canadian!! Keeping my fingers crossed for a CPU (either would make me happy) in the drawing...

Zenphic
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Post by Zenphic » Sat May 10, 2008 11:54 am

Donating $25 live.
I love this site :)

ajkalan
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Post by ajkalan » Sat May 10, 2008 12:05 pm

Another $25 incoming. I told myself I was finished donating, but that processor is too tempting a grand prize to ignore!

mixter
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Post by mixter » Sun May 11, 2008 4:02 am

I've gotten lots of great ideas from Mike and crew.
Don't frequent the forum very often but when I have, the discussions have been very helpful.
Sent in a small Paypal donation to help the cause.
Thanks for all the work Mike and crew!

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Post by Reachable » Sun May 11, 2008 11:46 am

The importance of the <15 dBA anechoic chamber hit home to me on the same day that the fund drive was started, when the article about the visit to the Audio Engineering Society school was also published.

The article mentioned the 19 dB computer (as measured in the 18 dB ambient) that was brought to the school. Unless I'm mistaken, there's no way that the computer would produce 19 dB if measured in pristine absolute silence, or even 18 dB. 18 dB when added to an 18 dB ambient would produce 21 dB. Without a slide rule in front of me, I would estimate that the system actually produced around 15 dB.

So, yes, you can extrapolate, but the higher the ambient the cruder the estimate is going to be, because each measured decibel represents much more acoustic energy when the reading is higher.

The scientific precision is important. Perhaps not so much when dealing with a lone computer in one's study or living room, but in an office with 20 computers....

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Mon May 12, 2008 6:59 am

Original post updated:
Image

12 May, 7am Pacific: Hallelujah! We broke $10,000 some time on the weekend, and the current total is $10,700. Great thanks to the generous 247 people who made contributions in the past 26 days to bring us here. You represent less than 0.2% of unique visitors to SPCR over this period; you are the crème de la crème of the most intelligent, genteel tech community on the web!

Congratulations to the winners in the first draw, and good luck to everyone in the second draw, which will be done after midnight tonight! Contribute at least $25 for a chance to win.

To celebrate exceeding our objective, the prize pot has just been sweetened with the addition of an AMD Phenom 9600 quad-core processor.

NOTE: 138 generous individuals have qualified for the second giveaway prize draw which began May 1. With 15 prizes, your chances of winning are currently better than 1 in 10.
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

Zenphic
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Post by Zenphic » Mon May 12, 2008 11:36 am

Congrats on reaching the goal!
Now get those new hardware! :twisted:

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Mon May 12, 2008 12:01 pm

Zenphic wrote:Congrats on reaching the goal!
Now get those new hardware! :twisted:
The testing hardware's already all on order. That's not the challenge. Building the anechoic chamber is. It's going to be quite a challenge to do it well with all the constraints we have to deal with -- limited space & budget. (Remember -- a typical commercial anechoic chamber runs well over $100,000!) We'll start building some time in early June, most likely, when all the options and details have been completely studied. No point rushing in and then finding out a different strategy would have given better results!

For example, I just discovered on the weekend that a friend works in a telephony company that has a small anechoic chamber in Vancouver mostly unused for 2 years due to changes in their business (expansion at another site). I visited his offices & the chamber, and it's poorly insulated from external noise even though serious foam wedges are in place. It's in somewhat poor state of repair due to disuse. But the wedges would certainly work well for SPCR's chamber... if the company would see fit to dismantle their anechoic chamber. Maybe they would, because they hardly use it. Finding out might take some time.... and also to find out how much $$ they'd want to part with the wedges. This is definitely worth waiting to investigate fully.

Image
Will these wedges become ours?
Mike Chin, SPCR Editor/Publisher
Support SPCR by buying your gear through this link: Amazon

jonlumb
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Post by jonlumb » Mon May 12, 2008 12:35 pm

They do have one in the Exeter University where I am a student. Might have to talk nicely to someone about whether it is useable by anyone else....

KyleSTL
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Post by KyleSTL » Mon May 12, 2008 12:41 pm

Awesome! It's like a giant spongy iron butterfly. That would be great if you can get ahold of their obsolete/underutilized equipment for cheap. Remember you have thousands of people here that will vouch for the usefulness of this wonderful site.

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Post by Licaon » Mon May 12, 2008 1:32 pm

@MikeC: i can't wait for the 20-pages-1000-hires-pics article on the "SPCR special chamber build and 1st test" :D
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Post by jaganath » Mon May 12, 2008 1:49 pm

MikeC@We'll start building some time in early June, most likely, when all the options and details have been completely studied. No point rushing in and then finding out a different strategy would have given better results!
you're absolutely right. this setup will likely have to last SPCR for many years so I can imagine there is a lot of pressure to get it right "first time"; given the severely constrained budget and material/human resources, it may not be possible to "do over" the project if something big like the acoustic treatment or "room within a room" don't perform sufficiently well to achieve everything that everyone is hoping for from this setup (ie a noise floor in the 10-15dBA region). slow and steady wins the race! :wink:
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What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label "Liberal?" If by "Liberal" they mean...someone who looks ahead, who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions,who cares about the welfare of the people, who believes we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad...then I'm proud to say I'm a "Liberal."[/size]

psyopper
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Post by psyopper » Mon May 12, 2008 2:21 pm

You know what would be fun? Having each of the wedges adorned with a donors name. We could all become immortalized in various reviews, assuming some "in-chamber" testing shots are taken, either pre or post testing of course!

Think of how cool it would be to see your name in the background of the anechoic chamber on some random review in the future!

lm
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Post by lm » Mon May 12, 2008 2:37 pm

In case you don't exceed your budget, you could use the rest to buy things that need to be tested, instead of waiting for them to be sponsored. Dunno if availability of testable stuff ever was the problem, though.

Especially for items where it might be possible that the producer would send cherry-picked items for review. Anonymously buying them from any store would eliminate that possibility totally.

kiwik
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Post by kiwik » Mon May 12, 2008 4:40 pm

This lurker (me) has giventh thee 25$ because he supports what this website does.

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Post by Mikey » Mon May 12, 2008 5:49 pm

Skirge01 wrote:To anyone who thinks they can't afford to donate anything, come on people, think small: $5 is not a lot of money!
Indeed. Just donated $25 :)

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Post by wim » Mon May 12, 2008 8:22 pm

when setting up the room is complete i think MikeC could/should use it to record some of his classical guitar, i'd like to hear that! would you get a SNR on par with a proper recording studio with this set up?

MikeC
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Post by MikeC » Mon May 12, 2008 8:36 pm

wim wrote:when setting up the room is complete i think MikeC could/should use it to record some of his classical guitar, i'd like to hear that! would you get a SNR on par with a proper recording studio with this set up?
Not if I was playing. :lol:

Actually it would sound weird. The room would be way too dead. It would probably work well for recording single instrument tracks in a multi-track recording of music that's created purely in the electronic sphere. You could shape every aspect of the sound electronically without worrying about the "natural" ambient -- there would be none.
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jonlumb
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Post by jonlumb » Mon May 12, 2008 10:42 pm

So, when do we get the results of the prize draw?

snark_be
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Post by snark_be » Mon May 12, 2008 10:57 pm

When our Canadian and American friends will be awake! :wink:

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