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I/O panel? first time build

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  • System Builder
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Last response: in Motherboards
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March 15, 2014 8:18:18 AM

I'm building a new computer. First time. So I was thinking I need motherboard, CPU, GPU etc. But I opened the case of an old PC I have and there's some stuff in there I don't know what it is. Well actually, there's just one thing, a small card/panel at the front of the case, where the USB's are. Is this the "I/O card"?

Looking at specification of any motherboard, there will be a list of things included. One of which is.

1 x System panel(s)

example: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Is this the I/O card? Connecting/controlling all the front end ports?
How does this work on the backend?

Also i'm used to laptops. I was looking at some ATX motherboards and was shocked to find that wifi doesn't appear to be included by default. I know ethernet controller is, but wifi would have to be bought extra, a pci card?

Any more surprises coming my way? I've looked up CPU, GPU, RAM, SSD. And was given a case with an HDD and a PSU. http://www.prisjakt.nu/list.php?l=2525720&view=l

(Not sure about the motherboard. Still looking around. Could I get a micro ATX motherboard instead for the tower-case?)

I realize I will have to read up on some thing before attempting to put the stuff(components) together. Like checking that the motherboard fits, and if the PSU will work with these components. But buying all the stuff I listed, does that mean I have all I need.

More about : panel time build

a b V Motherboard
March 15, 2014 8:41:20 AM

No I/o per say.
There is no controller or card for the front pannel.
Your USB just happens to be constructed with a PCB for the foundation.
I could just as easily be the kind with no PCB.
Either way the controllers are in the motherboard, and they just plug into the motherboard. (USB2, USB3, earphones and microphone, start and reset switch, hard drives and power light, ,and sometimes a system speaker to name most of them)

I think the I/O you are referring to is the I/O panel, which is the metal piece that goes around the I/O ports in the back.
All motherboards come with their own, as the layout of the I/O ports are all different.
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a b V Motherboard
March 15, 2014 8:46:43 AM

As for you system we need a budget to really judge the value.

On the surface it looks like a good budget system.

What power supply brand and model is very important as well.

If I was going to over clock, then of course I would get a Z87 chip board, but not overclocking, I find the B85 chip set my choise.
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March 15, 2014 9:52:57 AM

The computer I have here is really old. The USBs on the front-side are far away from the motherboard and attached to this small card, which is connected to what I think is an IDE cable (probably connected to the motherboard but I can't see cause the CPU fan is in the way.

Ok I see, that modern motherboards have "onboard USB ports" (in addition to the rear panel ports). Do you just hook these onboard USB ports to a normal USB cable? and then run the cable to the front USB ports attaching them to a second set of USB ports? So would I have to buy some USB 3.0 ports separately? Does it work the same with the front audio input/output?

Looking at the link I gave to Newegg in the OP. Items coming with that motherboard includes:
1 x S/PDIF out header(s)
1 x Front panel audio connector(s) (AAFP)
1 x System panel(s)

The first two are audio. So then one of them should be the cables you hook into the motherboards audio AFAP socket, and the second item is the actual audio ports at the front of the case?

And the system panel is LED activity lights and power button etc.

But the actual USB ports themselves, and USB cables that's not included? I just realised the case I have already have USB ports, but those would be USB 2.0 ports?

"All motherboards come with their own [I/O panel], as the layout of the I/O ports are all different."

Ok that's a relief, since I was just thinking that could be a problem :D 

Also the power connectors that my older PSU has, I'll have check. As an example, don't know if it would work with

1 x 24-pin EATX Power connector(s)
1 x 8-pin ATX 12V Power connector(s)
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March 15, 2014 10:15:36 AM

The total cost for my system so far is ~$700, I suppose I could go higher, but I would have to save up for a little while. So it's a tight budget.

I have been looking at other CPUs and so on. I5's have low clock speeds and are expensive, the unlocked i5-4670k is twice as expensive (~$130 more) compared to i3. Spending that on a CPU running a 270x seems wasteful. And getting something significantly better than 270x is going to be very expensive. For $75 more I could get the GTX760, which I don't think really performs noticably better in comparisons. And no mantle.

I didn't go for the FX-6300, even though it performs better than the i3 in say BF4, atleast most of the time. But looking at FPS comparisons, the FX is a bit unpredictable. Even the pentiums perform better than FX per core.

Also with mantle, it looks like maybe i will get descent play in bf4 even with the i3. What do you think? And many other games don't seem to be as heavy on the CPU.

And I don't even have a 1080p monitor. So maybe the 270x is even too much. The 260x is cheaper, but lots of tests show it's pretty close to 30fps in demanding games.


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a b V Motherboard
March 15, 2014 11:22:17 AM

Get a new power supply.

You won't be using the S/PDIF, at least I never have.
The other audio is what connects to the front panel, rear sound is all built in to the I/O section.

You get what the case has.
Newer cases will have USB3, and older cases have USSB2, and some have both.

If you have a single front panel plug, that is rare,and usually found in pre builds like Del, and HP.
An aftermarket case will have separate plugs.

A single front panel plug from a Dell probably won't fit an aftermarket motherboard.

If you are getting a new case, and a new motherboard, don't worry about it, as everything will fit.
If your case ie, has no USB 3, and your board, has a USB 3 plug you want to use, you just get an add on USB 3 panel that will fit in one of the front drive expansion ports

The 260X is high entry level, and the 270X is more in the high level area. 760 is a step up from the 270X
If the 760 is the same or close price to the 270X then the 760 is the better deal.
270X originally went for $199

For gaming you want 3.0 gig or better.
Don't sacrifice speed for cores, it usually won't help.

Not getting into the Intel vs AMD but at the moment I think Intel, is the better deal, on the low to mid end, and un-passable on the high end.
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a b V Motherboard
March 15, 2014 11:29:55 AM

Another card in the range or the 260X is the GTX 750 Ti.

Edit
also the 660 is a step up from the 750Ti
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