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Sabertooth x79 vs Asus Rampage IV Black Edition

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January 11, 2014 10:21:49 AM

Hello! I'm building my new gaming rig and I had the opportunity to purchase the I7-4930k for a good deal. So I took that opportunity and now I'm building around that CPU. This will be my first Intel build and my first high end'ish' gaming rig.

In my rig now I have the AMD T1090 and the Sabertooth 990FX and I have never had an issue with the board even when I updated the bios. So the Sabertooth series has been good to me.

With this new build I have narrowed it down to two MBs. The Sabertooth x79 and the Rampage IV Black Edition. Money isn't an issue as I can save up for another month and get the more expensive one if needs be. I just want to get the board that will optimize the I7-4930k the best.

I have been doing my own research and found two things that really stand out for me on the Rampage IV Black Edition :

Intel Gb LAN with GameFirst
The latest Intel 1217 Gb LAN minimizes CPU overhead under high bandwidth utilization, which combined with ROG GameFirst ensures the lowest ping times. For wireless scenarios, the included mPCle Combo combines 802.11ac Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.0 and M.2/NGFF slot in one.

And

ROG RAMDisk
Game faster from start to finish by combining ROG hardware and software. ROG RAMDisk software makes the most of the DIMM design on the Rampage IV Black Edition by creating lightning-fast virtual drives for temporary storage. RAMDisk can also be used for partial caching to automatically store large, slow-loading files like maps into memory.

Are these features needed? Are they used? Or are they just Asus bloat that people just ignore. I dont know enough about these features and if they are something that makes a huge difference in overall performance or not. Like I said money isn't an issue but if I'm paying for features that won't be utilized then there is no point in paying the extra cash.

I'll be transfering over my Samsung Pro 840 256 gig SSD, WD 1TB Black, GTX 680 x2 in SLI, Corsair 1200 power supply, 16 gigs or Corsair Vengeance Memory and I'll reuse my Corsair Carbide 300R case which according to the specs on the Motherboard an E-ATX Should fit with no issues. (Can this be confirmed too please) I also will be purchasing the Corsair h100 extreme CPU cooler, will this cause space issues with my case I have now if I go the Rampage route?

Other notes: I will be upgrading to Windows 7 Ultimate so I can fully optimize the new boards 64 gig potential. Then of course I'll be upgrading my memory (thoughts on new memory that best fits the board you recommend would also be appreciated.)

I have no plans on getting a third GTX 680 but I suppose I could if you all recommend the Rampage over the Sabertooth. As I know the Sabertooth only has 2 slots for 2 video cards.

As far as overclocking. I've never been one to 'push the limits' of my rig. A nice stable overclock will do and both of these boards will do this well so that isn't and buying feature I'm really worried about.

Thank you in advance everyone who takes the time to read and answer my questions. It is much appreciated.


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a b V Motherboard
a b 4 Gaming
January 11, 2014 7:11:36 PM

For the ram disk, read this if you havent. http://rog.asus.com/tag/ram-disk/
From what i understand, it allows you to take advantage of the large amount of memory possible with the board to make a sort of "ram hard drive" type of thing. RAM is faster than an SSD or HDD so this would in theory speed up the computer from a hard drive perspective, similar to how an ssd speeds up a system compared to a normal HDD, kind of like with using an ssd cache drive, sort of (I'm sure someone can explain this better). That being said, if you arent going to take the time to learn how to set it up it's more or less a useless feature to you. As far as the LAN thing, use your judgement and research there. It sounds a bit like the Killer NIC that MSI puts into their z77/87 g gaming boards (from what I remember). I believe it said similar things about Killer, but actual tests proved that the difference was too minor to be worth the extra money. So again, use your judgement there, it might not be bloatware but it might have no more benefit than the "thermal armor" for sabertooth boards.

It's not that they are bloat features, but you just might not use them.
The way I see it, ROG boards are more aimed at maximizing the potential of the hardware for those that wish to do so. These might be the people who want the highest overclocks, the best fps, the fastest render times. The sabertooth is more of an all-around reliable board, not quite as performance oriented as the ROG, but still has a very good feature set and is built to last. For those that are happy with a solid 60 fps in games, decent but not groundbreaking overclocks, and render times that allow us to go take a quick bathroom break, and most of all don't want to spend the extra money for ROG features we won't use, sabertooth is the better choice (in the end a lot of what you can do will be based on your other hardware anyway). My choice would be sabertooth as it's a sturdy, reliable, well-featured board, but if you decide that you might wish to use the options on that ROG board someday, you might just want to get it for peace of mind
From what I remember the sabertooth (this was for z87 so x79 might would likely different) it was stable up to a certain point (I think like 4.5-4.6 ghz) and after that stability wasnt so great. Things will likely depend on how good the chip you will get anyway

As far as the case, from what I read it looks like it should probably fit, but the cables (like SATA) might be a bit of a tight fit.

You might consider Windows 8 unless you need something specifically from Win 7 Ultimate. See this page about memory on Windows 8: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop...(v=vs.85).aspx#physical_memory_limits_windows_8
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January 11, 2014 8:29:51 PM

I will defiantly use the features on the Motherboard if they will increase the performance of my computer for sure. However I have had a very good experience with my Sabertooth 990 FX. Hmm. lol still unsure I was recently at a gaming convention and spoke to NVidia associates at the convention and they recommended staying with Windows 7
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a b V Motherboard
a b 4 Gaming
January 11, 2014 8:50:27 PM

Unless you absolutely cannot tolerate the new UI for windows 8, or have a program that is proven to have unforgivable issues with 8 and only works on 7, or have some other sort of serious issue with 8, then there isnt a huge reason to go with 7 over 8 in my eyes. The new UI takes about a week to learn (and in my opinion can often be more efficient than the old start menu). To me the whole OS feels a bit "quicker" and from what I've heard 8 is more efficient and secure than 7 (that's delving more into technical stuff that I don't feel qualified to explain, but some quick research should get you there). Windows 8 licenses can be transferred to other boards, as long as you only have it active on one computer at a time. Most stuff that works on 7 will likely work on 8. Half the time I don't even remember that I switched. If you were only upgrading from another license/ already had windows 7, i'd say stick with it, but for a brand new OS 8 makes more sense to me.

The Ram disk thing should speed up your system I think if you set it up right, but like overclocking, make sure you research it properly before doing it.
As far as the board goes, at that level it depends more on what you are willing to spend money on, both boards are going to be great. Do you want to buy those extra features? Do you ever, ever think you might want to use them or at least experiment with them? Then buy the ROG. Do you want to save some money and go with the old, reliable board with the longer warranty? Then sabertooth is the way to go. As one with a z87 sabertooth I can definitely agree that it is a good family of boards, but in the end it's your money to spend as you wish.
*As a side note, I bought a z87 board, but havent overclocked it yet, and don't plan to overclock in the immediate future. But I figured that I MIGHT want to overclock sometime during my computer's life, and so planned accordingly. Remember, the motherboard is one of those parts that, while replaceable, is not something you really want to change later on
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January 12, 2014 11:23:31 PM

Thanks for the Help MC962. I'm going to get the Sabertooth. I am very happy with the AMD version of the board and for the price its on Newegg I can't beat it. The RamDisk feature seems nice but I'm already running an SSD so I don't think I'll need it. Also the sound feature (that I didn't mention on my OP) I can get from a sound card that will have better sound. And the Intel Gb LAN feature seems like something I can get from a network card.

Thanks Again for everything!
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