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Motherboard Poll

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Most stable and best gaming performance? (Q6600&DDR2)

Total: 42 votes (11 blank votes)

  • GIGABYTE GA-EX38-DQ6
  • 46 %
  • EVGA NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI
  • 22 %
  • ASUS P5N-T Deluxe
  • 19 %
  • Other - (Leave brand/model please)
  • 16 %
March 21, 2008 12:08:32 PM

Using a Q6600, 8GB OCZ DDR2 1000 ram and an 8800GTS on Vista 64bit, which motherboard would be best for
Stability and Gaming?

SLI isn't much of a consideration.

GIGABYTE GA-EX38-DQ6
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128326

EVGA NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813188024

ASUS P5N-T Deluxe
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131247

Explanation for your answers are appreciated, but not required.

Thanks,
Rik

More about : motherboard poll

March 21, 2008 12:40:50 PM

X38 boards are far more stable and overclock better than the 780i especially with quads. 780i is a revised 680i and still suffers from some of the same issues although if you plan on SLI your best bet would be 780i or 790i.
March 21, 2008 1:26:42 PM

X38 boards are the best boards .....
Asus maximus formula rocks
Related resources
March 21, 2008 2:21:48 PM

:fou: 
JackNaylorPE said:
X48 Boards are now shipping, though most of the faster ones want DDR3.
http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=3229

790i Boards should start shipping within a month.
http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=326...


Definately not interested in DDR3 yet and I prefer stuff that has been out for at least a month or so. I'm not good enough with trouble shooting (this will be my first complete build) to fight with bleeding edge technologies.

I'll let someone else be the first to discover any conflicts and issues :pt1cable: 

I am leaning towards the Gigabyte GA-EX38-DQ6. The only thing that puzzles me is that it is an ATI crossfire board, but apparently can run a single Geforce card just fine. Wouldn't that mean its been optimized just for ATI??

EDIT HERE:
I'm buying everything from Newegg in a package deal. I just checked and they dont even an have Asus maximus formula un-opened. They have the Striker II, but man- $330! :fou: 
March 21, 2008 6:27:33 PM

I know, these prices are nuts. There is no way any normal person can get an X38/X48 board with DDR3 right now without getting a loan....forget about it!
March 21, 2008 7:02:44 PM

fuggetaboutit! :lol: 
a c 221 V Motherboard
March 21, 2008 8:05:45 PM

Some boards, IIRC have both DDR2 and DDR3 slots for those that are unwilling to wait for DDR3 prices to drop.....making room for the extra slots tho decreases the real estate for other goodies.

DDR3 is mainly "expensive" only in comparison to what DDR2 costs now.

$60-$190 / GB is not really a bad price historically. Just looked at a build I did for a friend back little over a year ago......$479 for 2 x 1 GB of CAS 3 Corsair Dominator Series.

Now it's $244 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair Dominators in DDR3 1800 are $464 today compared with the $479 DDR2 800 of a year ago
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
March 21, 2008 8:17:12 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
Some boards, IIRC have both DDR2 and DDR3 slots for those that are unwilling to wait for DDR3 prices to drop.....making room for the extra slots tho decreases the real estate for other goodies.

DDR3 is mainly "expensive" only in comparison to what DDR2 costs now.

$60-$190 / GB is not really a bad price historically. Just looked at a build I did for a friend back little over a year ago......$479 for 2 x 1 GB of CAS 3 Corsair Dominator Series.

Now it's $244 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair Dominators in DDR3 1800 are $464 today compared with the $479 DDR2 800 of a year ago
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I've seen a couple of boards that can take both, but using you are bound at a max of 4GB of either type and I insist on using 8GB with no page file on Vista 64 (separate argument and thread lol).

In addition to the price, DDR3 @ 7-7-7-20 vs DDR2 @ 3-4-3-9 is a real turn off too! Those are the numbers of the sticks you posted. I don't understand enough to know exactly how they will affect the ram performance, but I do know lower is better.

Anyone have layman's terms for why the Gigabyte board can only run a single Geforce card but can run two ATI cards in crossfire? I can't find anything that explains it but I've seen several reviews where they are using a single Geforce card if I read them right.
March 21, 2008 8:37:36 PM

I voted other MSI P35 Neo2-FR
March 21, 2008 11:45:54 PM

panicatak said:
I voted other MSI P35 Neo2-FR

I like the price, but Newegg only has one and its open box. Besides, it says it only supports Core 2 Extreme / Core 2 Duo / Pentium EE / Pentium.
March 22, 2008 12:22:36 AM

Goo for Asus Rampage Formula
X48 chipset and support for DDR2 and fantastic OC
March 22, 2008 2:53:57 AM



Looks and sounds like a great board- but it seems to be a bit too specialized for my skill level. I can't find a single review on it at ANY of the usual sites including this one. I found lots of threads about it and most seem to love it, but I need to stay with a board that is much more mainstream so when I make a frantic post for help with something, I have a better chance of someone knowing what I'm working with.... $300+ shipped doesn't help either lol.
March 22, 2008 3:16:58 AM

rik756 said:

Anyone have layman's terms for why the Gigabyte board can only run a single Geforce card but can run two ATI cards in crossfire? I can't find anything that explains it but I've seen several reviews where they are using a single Geforce card if I read them right.



^ I just let out that GOOOOO sound like when you see someone get a swift kick to the nads.

Hmm....layman's terms...Nvidia is greedy? No no...wait...Nvidia = jackholes?...hmm... [:mousemonkey:2]

Ah, I got it. Nvidia = Gollum......his precious = SLI license.




I love the toxic green-ness of the DFI boards.
March 22, 2008 3:50:22 AM

Rampage Formula all the way.
March 22, 2008 8:26:56 AM

rik756 said:
Looks and sounds like a great board- but it seems to be a bit too specialized for my skill level. I can't find a single review on it at ANY of the usual sites including this one. I found lots of threads about it and most seem to love it, but I need to stay with a board that is much more mainstream so when I make a frantic post for help with something, I have a better chance of someone knowing what I'm working with.... $300+ shipped doesn't help either lol.


It is a fairly common board (DFI LP series p35/x38/x48) depending on where you look. Over in the intel section at XS if you have any problems there are plenty of helpful people.http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=59.

It is also a good place to look for info on what problems that may exist on any board you may consider There are post on most all boards there, just browse through the posts on any of thr boards and you will see that the DFI has the fewest of any listed there.

If the price is a concern the p35 variation of that board is $100 less http://www.motherboardpro.com/DFI-LanParty-LT-P35-T2R-Motherboard-Chipset-P35-Socket-775-p-369.html (which is the board I am using) but lacks pcie 2.0 and only has 1 x16 electrical slot altho it has 3 physical.

The main reason I picked this board was its 6 layer pcb and 8 phase power along with 3 usable pci slots even with a dual slot vid card, a combination that is more difficult to find than you would think.

As far as the complex bios it is, but it doesn't have to be unless you want to. On my 2nd boot of my 8400 I went and just set vcore to 1.25 vdim to 2.1 and fsb to 450 and set vdroop control to disable (which gives a load vcore a little higher than what is set in bios) rebooted and ran that way for a few weeks.

As I learn more about what various settings do I tweak as I go. Now I am leaving vcore at auto and using a feature called special add to adjust which allows c1e, eist and vdroop to function while running a decent OC and vcore setting on my cpu.
Here is an example of what that does.





It is nice to leave vdroop on (it helps save the cpu from dangerous voltage spikes) and not have to have idle voltage way higher than needed.

All in all from all the boards I looked at when I bought, the LanParty UT and LT boards seemed to be the best fit even tho I was not going after any extreme overclocking. And I believe the old saying that you get what you pay for is true in this instance.

As far as support from forums you can get a lot of help from the threads at XS and DFI Club.
March 22, 2008 11:35:23 AM

rik756 said:
I like the price, but Newegg only has one and its open box. Besides, it says it only supports Core 2 Extreme / Core 2 Duo / Pentium EE / Pentium.


No it supports the 8xxx series, q6xxx and q9xxxx

I have my Q6600 at 3ghz with no voltage adjustments, it will do 3.6Ghz but I realy don't need that much power yet...
March 22, 2008 11:46:10 AM

X 38 / 48 series , the best for stability and oc
a b V Motherboard
March 22, 2008 12:06:01 PM

From a price performance point of view, I would recommend to you the Asus P5K.
As it officialy supports FSB1600, and is warrantied as so, it will let you overclock your Q6600 to 3.6GHz (potentially) with ease.

As for supporting your CPU.....
Any P965, P3x, P4x, 6X0i, 7X0i will support your Q6600.
Even if newegg does not specifically say so.

PCIe is a universal standard that will work with any manufactures video card, or peripheral for that matter.
That means that all of the MB's listed on this page will support an ATI card or a nVidia card.
The difference comes in when you want to use a multi card solution.

Currently, SLI will only work on nVidia based MB's.
This includes the nForce 4, 500, 600 and 700 series chipsets.
The only Intel based solution to support SLI is the uber expensive SkullTrail platform.

ATI on the other hand has a little more marketing sense.
They allow CrossFire to run on any of their MB's along with any Intel based MB with 2 or more PCIe 16x slots.
March 22, 2008 1:29:04 PM

WoW.

Lots of good info guys, I appreciate, thank you.

Ancient_1, I'll look into the DFI boards a some more. If newegg had it, I'd be a lot more tempted. From what I read, the $100 difference is supposedly just a different cooling solution. The posts I mentioned were at the XS forums as well. That board seems to have its own following of DFI users lol. Thanks for all the info and the charts. You're right about the RMA issue, there doesnt seem to be many. That's part of what surprises me about it. They sound like awesome boards and most of the people that have them love them. Why aren't they more mainstream and why hasn't any reviewed them on the major sites? Doesn't make sense.

outlw6669, thanks for the explanation. I mostly kinda sorta a little bit maybe got a similar answer from SpincachEater in a round about gothic kind of way lol. Just not as detailed...
March 22, 2008 3:46:13 PM

I would love the 790i and I would even pay the high price, but with the DDR3 ... phhh... I'm not sure anymore.
Maybe I will just get the X48 DDR 2 with an 9800GX2.
But I would miss SLI for future upgrades I think... its hard to choose ;-)
March 22, 2008 3:59:40 PM

tjoepie said:
I would love the 790i and I would even pay the high price, but with the DDR3 ... phhh... I'm not sure anymore.
Maybe I will just get the X48 DDR 2 with an 9800GX2.
But I would miss SLI for future upgrades I think... its hard to choose ;-)


I really really debated the 9800GX2, but man- $600! I know that price will come down but I also know that as they refine the drivers NOTHING out there will be able to touch it for a while. Not going with an SLI mobo made that card look even better, but I'd have to downgrade other parts of my buy to cover the cost and in a year it will be old news I think.

I'm not impressed with the SLI anyway. I have two 7950GT's in SLI and there are a few times it helps, but until its 100% major improvement 100% of the time, it's just not worth it to me personally. Especially since I've come to enjoy dual monitors as of late.
a c 221 V Motherboard
March 23, 2008 4:20:55 PM

rik756 said:
In addition to the price, DDR3 @ 7-7-7-20 vs DDR2 @ 3-4-3-9 is a real turn off too! Those are the numbers of the sticks you posted. I don't understand enough to know exactly how they will affect the ram performance, but I do know lower is better..


Yes, lower is better at the same speed. DDR 800 and DDR 1800 tho ain't same speed. Boards with DDR3 are benchmarking a bit better than ones with DDR2.
March 23, 2008 10:50:04 PM

Thanks for all the input. The poll and my personal feelings made me get the Gigabyte. If Newegg carried the DFI Lan Party, I might have got it instead. I will seriously consider it as my an upgrade next year. Thanks for the heads up on that Anicent.

Here's what was in the cart when I hit the buy button. It should be here Weds to start building.

Vista 64-Bit
Nzxt Zero full tower
Silverstone single rail 650 PSU
Gigabyte GA-EX38-DSQ6 mobo
Intel Q6600 Quad CPU
OCZ Freeze Thermal Compound
COOLER MASTER 92mm Hyper TX2 CPU Cooler
8GB OCZ DDR2 1000 RAM
150GB Raptor 10K SATA HDD
OKGEAR HDD Cooler
eVGA 8800GTS (G92) 512MB GPU
Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer 7.1
2- SAMSUNG SATA DVD Burners with LightScribe
Scythe KAZE MASTER Digital Fan Controller
BenQ G2400W Black 24" LCD
Merc Illuminated Gaming Keyboard
Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse
Creative Inspire 7.1 Speakers

I hope it all plays nice together!
March 25, 2008 12:18:11 AM

Ancient_1 said:
They do carry the X38 version

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


Never even looked for that one. I just searched for the one you listed. I tried to find all the info on it that I could.

Again, there is a good chance that I'll end up with one on an upgrade or maybe even if the Gigabyte doesn't work out. Had I heard of them sooner, I would have been able to spend some more time reading up and getting comfortable with their name. Being a first build, I'm just being overly anal and trying to get the best stability and performance I can afford.

I don't think I made any mistakes choosing the Gigabyte, but after doing ALOT more reading, I if I have any problems with that one, I will try the DFI. I appreciate the time and thought you put into the info you posted. I hope you dont think it went unnoticed or unappreciated.

Had I heard about them a week sooner, I can all but promise I would have ended up with one. Due to a time crunch on my part, I had to go with what I already knew and that was the Gigabyte.

Rik
March 25, 2008 1:46:35 PM

The DFI board only listed FSB at 1333mhz, and not the typical 1600mhz. What's the implications on that?

And what's the difference between Gigabyte DQ6 and DS4, except the DS4 is $60 less?
March 25, 2008 2:32:06 PM

you left out the new 790i Ultra which has been tested and proved to be better than Intels new X48 even in overclocking. anandtech has a good review on it. I just used one of my three 780i boards to stepup to the 790i Ultra,so ill know for sure in a week or so. This will give nVidia time to come out with good quad drivers for my two 9800GX2s.
March 25, 2008 8:34:08 PM

stan116 said:
you left out the new 790i Ultra which has been tested and proved to be better than Intels new X48 even in overclocking. anandtech has a good review on it. I just used one of my three 780i boards to stepup to the 790i Ultra,so ill know for sure in a week or so. This will give nVidia time to come out with good quad drivers for my two 9800GX2s.



You left out the 790i ultra cost like $700. Until that comes down, no thanks. :p 

Also, care to like to some of those benchmarks?
March 25, 2008 9:24:49 PM

stan116 said:
you left out the new 790i Ultra which has been tested and proved to be better than Intels new X48 even in overclocking. anandtech has a good review on it. I just used one of my three 780i boards to stepup to the 790i Ultra,so ill know for sure in a week or so. This will give nVidia time to come out with good quad drivers for my two 9800GX2s.


I didn't leave it out, I overlooked it intentionally. I'm not interested in bleeding edge and certainly not in DDR3. This will be my first build so I want something with bios that are already stable and reviews I can count on. I didn't much care for the price at the moment either lol
March 25, 2008 9:46:09 PM

rik756 said:
I like the price, but Newegg only has one and its open box. Besides, it says it only supports Core 2 Extreme / Core 2 Duo / Pentium EE / Pentium.

Buying an open box is buying another persons problem that they returned.
March 25, 2008 10:00:41 PM

ZOldDude said:
Buying an open box is buying another persons problem that they returned.

My thoughts exactly!!

If they sent it back, they might have let the magic smoke out, broke some little tiny piece or whatever. If an open box was like 50%-60% off, I might consider it. For the usual $5-$15- Hell No!
March 25, 2008 10:28:46 PM

open box from the egg is a gamble I don't want to b a part of ...everytime a friend has done this they've gotten rippen off in the drive thru :ouch:  ,I'd trust an ebayer before that...gl
a b V Motherboard
March 25, 2008 10:55:17 PM

ZOldDude said:
Buying an open box is buying another persons problem that they returned.

Agreed. Well said!
March 29, 2008 11:29:04 AM

I'm about to move, so I havent started building it yet- but that Gigabyte GA-EX38 DQ6 is impressive looking. The box is way too pretty and the copper coolers on the board really jump out at you...
March 29, 2008 1:26:47 PM

rik756 said:
I'm about to move, so I havent started building it yet- but that Gigabyte GA-EX38 DQ6 is impressive looking. The box is way too pretty and the copper coolers on the board really jump out at you...



I just brought the DS4, what's the difference between that and the DQ6? The specs are mostly the same and it's $60 less. Should I RMA it for a DQ6? :p 
March 31, 2008 1:00:54 AM

Man, I'm doing a ton of research because im planning on building me a new comp very soon and motherboard choice has me spinning in every direction.

I've settled on E8400 and my goal is to OC to 4.0ghz on air as long as the processor plays nice :D . At the same time I was really hoping to SLI a couple cards.

I want to have a good stable mobo for OC the e8400 to 4.0 or more.. That sends me in the direction of a solid Intel mobo. But then I can't SLI which is right up there with my goal to OC.

I mean, seriously now, how are the 780i boards for doing some serious OCing? Will I be able to get the E8400 to 4.0 with the eVGA 780i board for example?

Help me make up my mind haha. :D 
March 31, 2008 1:26:29 AM

I bought the Gigabyte GA-EX38-DSQ6. Unless you're going to run super high resolutions all the time on about the 10 games that really benefit from it, get the 9800GX2 or an 8800GTS and enjoy you investment all the time rather than the few times you might get a little scaling from two cards. The intel non-sli solutions are far better (from what I've read) than any of the nforce chips for OC, stability and performance. The little you gain from SLI is paid for in those categories. Just my opinion, but I just spent two months reading about the parts to put into the $2500 system I just built. SLI and nforce lost in all cases. You might consider the DFI Lan Party as well. I almost changed to it at the last second.



Vista 64-Bit
Nzxt Zero full tower
Silverstone single rail 650 PSU
Gigabyte GA-EX38-DSQ6 mobo
Intel Q6600 Quad CPU
OCZ Freeze Thermal Compound
COOLER MASTER 92mm Hyper TX2 CPU Cooler
8GB OCZ DDR2 1000 RAM
150GB Raptor 10K SATA HDD
OKGEAR HDD Cooler
eVGA 8800GTS (G92) 512MB GPU
Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer 7.1
2- SAMSUNG SATA DVD Burners with LightScribe
Scythe KAZE MASTER Digital Fan Controller
BenQ G2400W Black 24" LCD
Merc Illuminated Gaming Keyboard
Logitech MX518 Gaming Mouse
Creative Inspire 7.1 Speakers
StarTech 10/100Mbps Broadband Router
March 31, 2008 1:27:52 AM

phuzed said:
Man, I'm doing a ton of research because im planning on building me a new comp very soon and motherboard choice has me spinning in every direction.

I've settled on E8400 and my goal is to OC to 4.0ghz on air as long as the processor plays nice :D  . At the same time I was really hoping to SLI a couple cards.

I want to have a good stable mobo for OC the e8400 to 4.0 or more.. That sends me in the direction of a solid Intel mobo. But then I can't SLI which is right up there with my goal to OC.

I mean, seriously now, how are the 780i boards for doing some serious OCing? Will I be able to get the E8400 to 4.0 with the eVGA 780i board for example?

Help me make up my mind haha. :D 


4.0ghz? Not a chance. Lol... :kaola: 

The 780i should be fine with around 3.5ghz oc. For 4.0, you need that x38/48 chipset, no less. E8400 runs on 1333fsb, putting extra strain on motherboard.
March 31, 2008 2:05:27 AM

dagger said:
4.0ghz? Not a chance. Lol... :kaola: 

The 780i should be fine with around 3.5ghz oc. For 4.0, you need that x38/48 chipset, no less. E8400 runs on 1333fsb, putting extra strain on motherboard.


Ok then, this pretty much seals the deal. intel chipset it is then. Thnx for the info :D 
March 31, 2008 2:17:52 AM

Ok, so I get the damn thing built (was actually kinda cool for my first build) and right out of the hole I've screwed something up. The V_Phase (CPU load) LED on the mobo is lit up like a christmas tree and I can't get it to dectect my keyboard. It does show the options screen on the monitor, I just can't get to them without a keyboard.

Suggestions? :pfff: 
March 31, 2008 3:43:54 AM

i remember when ddr2 was super expensive...
March 31, 2008 1:40:45 PM

imrul said:
i remember when ddr2 was super expensive...


LOL. Little bit of a random thought there imrul?

I have the boot issue solved. Turned out to be a bad stick of ram.
!