Xbox Series Controller (and related accessories)

I recently played a game which plays better using a controller. I tried using keyboard for a while but I ended up needing finer direction control and thus bought this. No wireless adapter because the new one isn’t compatible with Windows 8.

It was fine and all but the cable was rather annoying.

Digging around stores and flea markets (online), I found someone selling this older adapter for cheap. It was kinda suspicious and the seller took their time until finally sending this but thankfully it works fine so far. I have it permanently connected using included extension cable because the dongle is so large it blocks the other front panel port.

With wireless adapter problem solved, there’s one last thing required to ensure most convenient usage.

The battery, of course. Rechargeable because that’s just how it should be. I considered getting a fancy charger with display and stuff but ended up only getting a basic one because I probably won’t use them all that often anyway. Got a USB one because I don’t need to worrying powering it up. It also comes with LED torch which unfortunately rather annoying to use because the power button must be held for few seconds to turn it on instead of simple press.

Maybe I’ll finally buy a proper torch or something later.

Lastly, I figured I should just stock up the batteries for other devices like remote and stuff so here they are. Bought the cheapest Japanese battery I could find.

I’m now thinking of finally getting one of those remote controlled Lego cars

Matrox G550 PCI-e x1 Graphics Card

Fanless GT 1030 at the bottom for comparison

Ryzen doesn’t have internal graphics support so any servers using it that’s not server board (thus no external graphics chipset) will require PCI-e graphics card.

While I already have one for my main server (a Zotac GT710), I needed another one for my other server. That said, I didn’t originally need x1 card. Any x16 card would’ve worked but I stumbled on this while looking for cheap card on Yahoo! Auction.

It ended up a bit more expensive (compared to if I just pick random x16 card) but this one is x1 and the card is so small it’s kinda cute. The output being dual DVI is also rather interesting for server use although not that surprising considering it’s from Matrox. They kinida specialize on card with multiple outputs.

Despite being over 12 years old, the card still functions. For console use, at least. I didn’t try its graphics capability and FreeBSD has no support for it at all. An unconfigured Xorg just crashes.

Asus Blu-Ray Writer BW-16D1HT

I don’t remember last time I bought a new boxed optical disc drive.

My previous drive was bought second hand from YJA and while it reads discs fine, it doesn’t have support for those fancy UHD discs.

A very generic front panel.

One firmware flash later, it now is capable of reading UHD discs. Many thanks to folks at MakeMKV.

Now I think about it, I didn’t even bother testing the drive before flashing it…

Creative BT-W3

Continuing from this wireless earphone thingy, I needed something to connect to it from PC. I initially bought a cheap TP-Link Bluetooth adapter but it ended up sounding crap. Not sure why but it produces so much noise.

So I got the thing above and it sounds quite a bit better. The codec choice doesn’t seem to differ much between SBC and aptX. Although I think the latency is every so slightly better with aptX? It’s still to slow for watching video (fixable by adjusting delay) or playing games (lost cause) though.

The quality difference is almost enough to justify the price difference of over 5 times the cost of that cheap BT adapter. It’s also able to connect to my earphones way more smoothly with no fiddling on Windows side (nothing to fiddle anyway).

The final setup looks rather silly though with my case not having USB-C port and thus requires the USB-C to USB-A adapter resulting in USB flash drive-sized… thing.

Even more SSDs

Earlier this week I noticed the two mirrored SSDs in my main server is close to dying.

One of them has started reallocating sectors even though it’s only got a bit over 150 TB written. It’s specced at 150 TBW warranty though so I guess it’s just about time.

That said, the other one has over 220 TB written yet it still has no problem. This one is rated for 204 TBW so it also already passed its specification.

The reason for those stupid write number is because I probably have used them as ZFS cache drives. I think I killed two other drives in similar fashion last year. I stopped doing it a while back but it was a bit too late.

I haven’t installed them yet as the server doesn’t have NVMe slots and the PCI-e to NVMe adapters I ordered have not arrived. Thanks, Amazon 😐

I don’t actually know if they will work at all. I don’t think the BIOS supports NVMe boot and I’m not sure if the commonly suggested method of using Clover Boot will work for FreeBSD. It theoretically should be fine but who knows…

Music CD – Weathering with You complete version

And lastly WWY complete version songs. Five tracks are included and they each extend the version used in the movie and included in the soundtracks.

My main interest, Grand Escape, sure felt a bit different with the extended version. It’s no longer slow buildup and end in high note in single run but instead with ups and downs and finally peaked at nearby the end with a bit more cooldown afterwards. The impact is reduced but still good regardless.

The rest are simple improvement over the soundtracks version.

Karaoke/instrumental version isn’t included though 😔

Music CD – Hello World OST

It’s a thing. Except full version of the one song I liked most is not included in here: Yesterday (by Official Hige Dandism) is only in movie version. Whoops.

Oh well that means another 3k expenditure because the song is only available in their latest album.

I didn’t use to buy soundtrack CDs (except Tenmon and Shinkai-related) but the last few movies I just felt like I need to buy them as well.

That reminded me I should check when the blu-ray of this (and the following two CDs) will be released.

Music CD – Melty Blood OST – Promised Dawn

A rather old sound track CDs. It’s Melty Blood. It’s got Sion for the cover. And Arcueid. Good stuff.

I already have rip of it in some form but the first track sounded a bit weird and it’s only 192kbps mp3. Found it cheap in Suruga-ya so I grabbed one to find out myself.

Well the result is it sounded mostly the same. At least I finally legally have this one now. Only took a few years.