Help me find my perfect motherboard

Can't find all the necessary information i'm looking for when it comes to a new motherboard, so I'll ask here!

I'm looking for a motherboard with the following:

Q9450-ready
DDR2 (up to 8GBs)
Crossfire-ready
Award BIOS (blue background, white letters, red highlight... i find this BIOS to be the one I'm most comfortable with)
Nice Overclocking capabilities
(what chipset would you recommend for best Crossfire support? I'm running tri-monitors w/ resolution at 3840x1024)
Budget of $300 including shipping

I'm sure with a board that has all that, the rest of the stuff I need will already be there... No links necessary, I'll be researching the replies, but please give a bit of a description on which board you would prefer and a current price...

I was reading about the ASUS Maximus and Rampage boards, and I've been a fan of DFI for quite a while, was also considering gigabyte, but the only board I know of that always has Award BIOS is DFI...

So, what do you recommend?
5 answers Last reply
More about help find perfect motherboard
  1. If you want Crossfire then it's between X38 and X48. Forget P35 (one PCI-E 1.1. slot at x4, that hurts performance a lot). Forget P45 too (both PCI-E 2 slots running at x8 in Crossfire, at least in the Asus P5Q). There was an article at tweaktown comparing a P45 with some X48 board, with two HD 4850 on each. The results were similar at 1680x1050, but at 2560x1600 the X48 was doing much better.
  2. so then in higher resolutions, the x48 came out on top? I'll definitely need to keep that in mind, I use tri-monitors at 3840x1024 resolution so this is definitely important... *added to list of stuffs i'm looking for*
  3. Yeah, it did. At 2560x1600 there was something like 11fps minimum on X48 and 2fps on P45. I can live with an occasional 11fps, I guess, but 2fps would be too distracting. Let me see if I can find that article again. I have a bookmark for it but it's at home.
  4. There you go. OK it was 2.9 fps, not 2 fps, but you get the idea.
    http://www.tweaktown.com/articles/1472/intel_p45_vs_x48_crossfire_performance/index.html

    I don't have any benchmarks for X38, but I suspect a GA-EX38-DS4 can do the job as well as the GA-X48-DQ6 they used in that review, and it could cost less.
  5. I have the Rampage Formula, I love it. Overclocks great I have my X3350(Q9450) at 3.6 (450X8). 8 Gigs of OCZ DDR2-1000,HD 4850(1 on the way, get the other one next month).

    I looked at most motherboards like the DFI, Gigabyte, MSI and I ended up with this one. It had all the options I wanted plus some. I would have went with the P5E Dleuxe but it was not available. The P5E Deluxe is the Rampage Formula minus the LCD Poster and the Clead CMOS, Power, Reset buttons. You dont get the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game and 3DMark 06.

    1Haplo
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