I'm putting together my parts list for my first build and am almost finished, but I keep coming back to the motherboard.
I had decided upon the GIGABYTE GA-965P-DS3. But now I have read in a number of places that the 965 are good for 6400/6300 but that a 680i or 975x board would be better for a 6600 chip. But I can't seem to find exactly why or how much better those more expensive board would be. Can someone please shed some light on this?
The 965 seems to be the right choice b/c I don't plan to use SLI at all, but this question keeps nagging at me.
Also, I'm not sure If I will OC at all or not, if that factors into the equation. If I do, I'm sure it will be relatively mild by this forum's standards.
Thank you both. Puts my mind at ease. Choosing a mobo has been, by far, the most difficult component.
I hate to ask, but could someone point me in the direction of a good one that has an external SATA or firewire port? The DS3 dosent, but seems very good in other ways. Again, I dont want to use SLI/Crossfire, so I'd like to be able to keep the price down but I fear I'm really going to yearn for that feature.
I had to make a freak decision today on a 965/975 and which ever flavour it was in.
So, after some reading, I realized that they are nearly identical (965 vs 975) in performance. OC'ing used to be an issue on 965, but that's something of the past.
I was also looking at the DS3, but somehow the Asus appealed more (i'm a sucker for features). The DS3 does have all solid caps, all over the board, but 3 phase power as opposed the P5B with solid caps around the VRM's and normal ones else where and 8 phase power. Was a hard choice.... :roll:
Ooops - Asus P5B Deluxe WiFi has an eSATA connection (1 external) and 1 close to PEG slot for who knows what reason. It's hard choice on the 965 chipset - but if you have a broad choice, look at Toms review on a bunch of 965 mobo's - I was stuck with Intel/Asus/Gigabyte today
All of the pluses and minuses of these boards is really starting to get mixed up in my head. Having a hard to keeping it straight. One common problem seems to be that they wont natively support or properly utilize high-end DDR2 800 RAM. Is this true of the PB5 as well? Is it true of all 965 boards?
Also, If I remeber correctly, someone said that the ASUS manual is not very good. This scares me a bit since I don't have any experience with building a system from scratch.
I can tell I need to start my research over again (sigh) to refresh my memory. Right now my top 3 choices would still be the GB DS3, Asus PB5 and the MSI P965 Platinum (based on review from Anadtech, tho I read elsewhere that this is one that would not properly utilize good RAM).
Speaking of RAM, I've read in a few posts that, unless I plan to seriously overclock, 667 would actually perform better than 800. Is this true? That would be nice, save a little $$. Im definitely geared more towards better performance over sparing my budget, but doing both at once would be nice.
I've read a LOT of posts and reviews about mobos, but I'm sure I'm asking some of the same questions as many other people. I'm apologize for that. Again, I think its all starting to get muddled for me.
Download the manuals from the manufacturer's site - I got the P5B yesterday, and I thought it was quite good.
The reason people complain about manuals, is that it does not cover each bios setting in detail - so you are left to wonder what the heck it means in certain cases. Also, sometimes people want techincal docs, and once they get it it confuses them so much that we get a catch 22 situation.
The thing is, the pc is a sandbox - and you have to get in there and work things out for yourself, along with help from like minded people - that's what makes the pc so damn nice in my view... It's a proactive exercise teaching you as you go.
Mobo's can be hard to start up, if you are using a cpu that will be supported by the mobo, once the new bios is installed - or if you really don't know what's going on. I've ran into problems, but on hind sight you realize that human error is to blame here.
Luckily there's a forum like this, so if you should get stuck with whichever mobo you buy, pop back and ask! :wink: