One of my recent gadget posts was about the XPAL PowerSkin for HTC Thunderbolt. As soon as I knew it was available, I ordered one. Now, having double the battery life is going to be fabulous, but I’ve been using it for about four hours and I already don’t like it overall. Supposedly it is designed so you can use the kickstand…which is true, except that you have to open the kickstand and shove it through a tiny little slit in the case as you put it on the phone. As soon as you hook it up to the phone, it starts charging the phone’s battery…which I guess works, but seems silly to me. When the case is on and you use the USB charger in a computer, it is automatically charge only…no more docking, no more using it as an external drive, no way to transfer files between the two…it doesn’t even show up under “My Computer” unless you remove the case and plug it in directly. I’m going to be taking the case off and putting it on several times a day, because it won’t allow the phone to function normally. And the last thing: the microUSB to USB cable that came with it is literally six inches long including connectors. So while having double the battery life will be great, I’m not convinced it was worth buying the case instead of a second battery. Ah well…live and learn. I’m just glad I pre-ordered, so it was $10.00 off with free shipping.

KitGuru kicks it off with the HIS HD6970 IceQ Mix

TweakTown examines the ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z (Intel Z68) mATX Motherboard

eTeknix weighs in on the Asus Radeon HD 6670 1GB Graphics Card

HardwareHeaven presents Corsair H80 vs Antec Kuhler H2O 920 CPU Coolers

Hardware Canucks comes back with the EVGA Superclock CPU Cooler

APH Networks checks out some G.SKILL F3-10666CL9D-8GBSQ 2x4GB DDR3 Laptop RAM

Pure Overclock spends some time with the Sapphire Edge-HD2 Mini PC

DeXgo beats the heat with the Scythe Kaze Q-8 und Q-12

Hardware Bistro goes inside the BitFenix Shinobi

Phoronix shares its thoughts on the ASRock H61M/U3S3

TrustedReviews takes a look at the LG 50PW450T

bit-tech gets into the Xigmatek Elysium

Legit Reviews hooks up with the Seagate GoFlex Satellite Mobile Wireless Storage

HotHardware reviews the Gigabyte G1.Assassin X58 Motherboard

To close out this selection, OCModShop takes on F.E.A.R. 3

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