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780i, 790i, or X38 that is the question x_x

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March 5, 2008 7:29:01 PM

Well ive finallly saved up money for a new rig and im lookin to get the best preformance on crisis without spending 1800$ on 3 8800Ultras, So i know im getting a Q6600 ive looked at the wolfdale proc's and I just felt more comftorble with the Q6600's preformance, and I've got my mobo options down to 3 and would like some opinions on it

A. I buy the 780i and limit myself to ddr2
B. I buy the x38 board and limit my ability to run SLI or tri-sli
C. Or i wait till the 790i comes out

With my first option i know that ddr2 to ddr3 preformance isnt exactly huge but i want to future proof this thing as much as i can because i dont have 1-2 grand to throw around all the time when im 17.

The x38 board seems nice but the SLI thing kind of bugs me, because if i do end up having enough money for it i would go for SLI or even tri SLI

and my third option is to wait for the 790i which gives me ddr3 and sli at the same time......now im still not completely sure how this ddr2 to ddr3 transition is going to go, and so thats why im here.

and lastly should you recommend to me any option i would also like a recommendation on the RAM i should drop into the board, with ddr2 its easier but im not so sure about ddr3 so if ya could drop in your few cents it'd be much appreciated, Thanx :D 

More about : 780i 790i x38 question

March 5, 2008 8:28:01 PM

I recently built my system. i actually had the same issues as you on a system build on what chipset to go with. i ended going with with the asus maximus. reason is unless you are running a 64 bit OS then all you can use is 3.2 GB of RAM anyway so I figure if i put in 4 to begin the build regardless of where the current status is of RAM in 4 years mine is maxed and working fine. the X38 chipset has a faster FSB so i was able to pickup the balistix tracer's in PC1066 for only $150 and I couldn't ask for more. I decided that if you pick up just 1 really nice card then you don't need to go SLI and the 38XX series AMD/ATI cards are really well price/ performance ratio and if you find that you need another card you can do it in this chipset. Another thing that prompted my decision is the SATA controller on the intel chipsets is better than that on the 680 780 and i would assume the 790 Nvidia chipsets as well. Don't get me wrong i am a huge Nvidia fanboy I am running there card and have always but this time I figured the X38 would suit me better.And i know you said you decided on a processor but the e6850 does better on most all games and the E8400 does better than that but at the same cost of the Q6600. i didn't see a real need for quad core yet if it is mainly used for a gaming system
March 5, 2008 9:33:43 PM

Random754,
The X38/x48 boards can crossfire it is the same as SLI but use only ATI cards.. You can run a single NVidia card in them as well. X38/x48 also have a faster frontside bus (up to 1600 I believe)

If I were buying TODAY I would consider X38/x48 boards, you are not buying a GTX/Ultra (top end) Thus the ATI alternative will equal the speeds of the NVidia.

Another thing I would think long and hard over is – Are you ever really going to SLI?

I have a SLI board and it took me almost 7 months to get my second GTX, now there are new cards on the horizon which make my SLI obsolete…. I have come to the conclusion that unless you are buying two of the #1 vid cards at the time you purchase your system then you are spending money on obsolete technology. I personally will always buy single card motherboards from this point forward and have the #1 card in there, and here is why:
- MB will cost less.
-Power supply cost less.
-no hassle, every game supports a single card.
-can afford the top vid card with the money saved.

Just my 2 cents.
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March 5, 2008 9:35:15 PM

Im in the same situation and I decided to go for a 790i motherboard and just get the cheapest DDR3 memory. Then later on upgrade the RAM.
March 5, 2008 10:00:19 PM

Not too hard to choose....

Do you need high resolution beautiful graphics? If yes, eliminate X38/X48. If no, purchase X38/X48...DONE! Do you need it today? If yes, purchase 780i...DONE! If no, purchase 790i when it comes out...DONE!

Of course I did leave out the boring money stuff, hehe.
March 5, 2008 10:08:05 PM

well as i said i want to run crisis well, as far as resolution i dont see going past 1280x1024, and crysis does use all 4 cores, which is why i decided on the q6600 and i see future games doing the same,so if i can run crysis at high-very high with good fps and have head room to upgrade in the future my mind would be at peace.
so from what im hearing go with the x38 or possibly 790i?
March 5, 2008 10:14:35 PM

X38 for sure, if your resolution is going to stay that low. Basically no point in running 2 cards at that resolution, and Intel chipsets > nForce chipsets when it comes to chipset VS chipset.

Does Crysis see a noticeable difference from a quad core CPU? The only game I know of that saw an actual like reasonable difference was Supreme Commander...which is basically the reason I'll be going quad core...but the 45nm stuff is totally awesome, so that leaves me at a QX9650, but this is really bad price/performance because the thing costs two arms and 3.5 legs and a kidney LOL.
March 5, 2008 10:26:28 PM

well i guess thats a deal then, im getting 2gb of a-data 1333 ddr3 memory
plz tell me if you have an objection or recommendation for the RAM ill be getting the ASUS MAXIMUS EXTREME board, and as far as the processor i wish i could find an e8400 >.< i did notice the difference in gaming charts
, and as a final question sense im probably goin for a single card config what should it be i have an 8800GTS 320mb from a year back or so and im not sure if i should keep it or not, probably just wait for the gx2 9800
March 5, 2008 10:34:44 PM

oh and sorry to double post but i have another small problem, i have a CM-Stacker case, its a HUGE case and i was wondering, most likely any proc cooler i drop in is gonna be fairly large, whether its the AC Freezer 7 or the xigmatek thing, and after seeing their size im worried that the cooler may hit 1 or more of the 4 120mm fans mounted on the door, does anybody have any experience with this?
March 5, 2008 11:01:15 PM

If you can get an E8400 the stock cooler will do you pretty good unless you want to do some more serious OCing. Intel's 45nm stuff is amazing.

You have a good card right now, I would say stick it out for the 9800 stuff, 9800GT or 9800GTX could be some sweet stuff. 9800GX2 probably going to donkey but we'll see.
March 6, 2008 10:04:49 AM

At the moment, DDR3 just isn't worth investing in. When it is, the clock speeds will be up and current motherboards either won't support a nice amount, and/or won't support nice clock speeds.

Crysis... 2 9800GX2 in SLI might hit 60 fps... maybe... at 1024x768... while looking straight down...

My recommendation: 64-bit operating system, 4/8GB PC2-6400 RAM (aka 800MHz DDR2), wait on the graphics card until the end of the month until the 9800GTX and 9800GX2 are out and reviewed, then decide on graphics card. Personally, I'm aiming for a single 9800GX2, since I don't really care all that much if Crysis can't run smoothly with everything at Very High at 1920x1200...
March 6, 2008 11:20:45 AM

Go with the X38/X48 boards especially with quad-cores.
The overclocking sucks on the nforce boards for 4x cores and I'm really sick of them at this stage.
I've decided my next board will definitely be intel for the sheer stability they provide over Nvidia. Plus there's a lot of heating issues with the 680i/780/790i boards.
March 6, 2008 12:37:28 PM

I have to disagree with Kraynor on the 64-bit OS. Windows XP 64-bit has always been an ugly step child...the support and compatibility is horrible or non-existant, and I have only heard bad things about that OS...unless all you are going to be doing is web browsing and using a few Microsoft app.s, I'd stay away from it.

That leaves you with Vista, which is a total donkey on the resource front. Combine that with some other bad reviews and lack of compatibility and overpricing, and for now the best option is still Windows XP 32-bit.
March 6, 2008 12:50:09 PM

I'm using vista 64-bit and to be honest the only thing I found wrong with compatibility was ZoneAlarm, and I've since found a different firewall, problem solved. Apart from that, compatibility problems are a thing of the past.
March 6, 2008 4:40:18 PM

If your going to go with the asus maximus and q6600 go for DDR2, unless you plan on W/C go for DDR2-800. Its also dirt cheap these days so you can stock up if you want to. The asus maximus will overclock well too.

And guys? Crossfire scales better then SLI at the moment. but i still wouldn't recommend it unless your going to be running very high resolution. As for now a P35 chipset would do you justice :p 
a b V Motherboard
March 6, 2008 5:26:52 PM

I'm voting for Asus P5E or GA-X38-DS4. Either of those, with 4 GB of DDR2-800 and a single HD 3870X2. When you have more money or a big monitor or a really demanding game you'll be able to add another HD 3870X2 or even something from the HD 4xxxx series, when those are available.

DDR3 is a bad idea. Do yourself a favor and forget it.

If you trust nVidia more than ATI then at least avoid the overpriced Ultra cards. Get yourself an eVGA 780i motherboard and one or two 8800GTS G92 512MB cards. You might also find a good deal for 8800GTX cards if you shop around. Those are better than the GTS G92, especially at high resolutions, but they cost more and consume more power.

If this system is supposed to have 2 high-end video cards I recommend a case with great cooling, like the CoolerMaster Stacker or Silverstone TJ09. You'll also need a powerful PSU, like the Silencer 750W or Toughpower 850W.
March 6, 2008 6:24:51 PM

I like my 64-bit OS. I haven't had any problems with it. In fact, there are less known issues with 64bit windows xp than 32bit windows xp using ATI video cards (according to Catalyst 8.3 release notes).

Plus you can use more ram, and 64 bit crysis runs a little faster.
a b V Motherboard
March 6, 2008 6:32:17 PM

What about 64bit Vista, does that have fewer issues in those release notes than 64bit XP or more? Just curious.
March 6, 2008 7:43:28 PM

I haven't come across any issues with Vista 64, although I can't personally compare it to XP 64 since I've never used it.

I have to agree with aevm on pretty much everything; I'd go 4gb DDR2-800 and stay away from DDR3 for at least another year or two. I'd take the X38 chipset, ASUS P5E or Maximus or the Gigabyte are all good boards (I think P5E is the cheapest).

I'd put in a 3870x2 now and if you upgrade to a larger monitor or just want to upgrade down the road, you have lots of options: another 3870x2, a single 3870, or whatever the newest ATI card is. Though the 3870's will likely be the most affordable/value-added upgrade option in say a year or so (especially if you wait to add a second one during Black Friday or Boxing Week).

The nVidia cards are great on their own, but I agree with the others in that the nVidia motherboards just aren't up to snuff vs Intel's, making SLI not worth it. Funny how the Intel chipset makes AMD's Crossfire the most sensible/valuable option (IMO of course)
March 6, 2008 8:13:18 PM

That is funny that the nForce chipset is actually hurting the nVidia cards in a way.

I really depends, your situation does not call for multiple video cards so a single nVidia card is the way to go. The 3870X2 is a multi-GPU card, and with multi-GPU cards as well as SLI/Crossfire solutions come some issues...I'd just stick with a nice 8800 GT/GTS G92 or wait for the 9800 good stuff.

Vista 64 I don't believe has many "issues" per say, except for performance problems...the OS is basically a hog and it shows in gaming FPS and benchmarks! DX10 is not worth the Vista price tag and FPS hit if you ask me, combined with the lack of widespread DX10 use.

Also, there are some programs and hardware out there which just doesn't have Vista drivers...so there may be no issues but it's cutting down on your options.
March 6, 2008 8:57:24 PM

790i Ultra ftw. All testers on xtremesystems are so far reporting records for oc's, huge fsb's and increased SLI performance using G92 cores.


DDR3 isn't really worth it no but just get some cheapish 1333mhz. Prices have come down a lot.
March 6, 2008 9:23:18 PM

where are you guys finding these 790 i's ???
!