My current pc is pretty dated (Socket 754 Athlon/AGP 8x/DDR), so I'm building a new one from scratch. Back when I built this pc, Asus was a well-respected mfg that produced quality/stable mb's that performed very well. Bios/Driver updates were posted regularly on their site & tech support was OK. aBit had gone downhill & was just the opposite at the time.
That was almost 4 years ago though, and I've searched numerous forums & review sites and it would appear that Asus has slipped quite a bit the last few years.
(HERE is a good example of what I'm referring to from [H]. )
I also see a lot of "open-box" Asus boards listed on Newegg, which probably isn't a good thing.
So, is it a fair/accurate statement that Asus mb's are not what they used to be or are their simply more complaints online due to more beginners building their own pc's these days?
If it makes a difference, I'm going to be going with either a P45 or X48 mb this time around and my pc hardware experience/knowledge level is probably "intermediate".
I'm also not going to be doing any overclocking this time around, although I did quite a bit of it in the past.
Any insight/experiences/advice would be appreciated!
From my experience NVidia based Asus(or any manufacturers) suck (My 680i was terrible) but their Intel based boards are off the charts. My Asus/Intel X38 is rock solid.
1st, thanks for the input.
2nd, I WAS set to buy an EVGA 780i SLI board, but after lurking on their support forums for a few weeks I put that on hold.
Then the 4800 series ATI cards came out & that sealed the deal for going with either a P45 or X48 board.
Anything else you'd like to share about your Asus X38 board?
Did it require a lot of tweaking/fiddling with the bios to get it to run stable?
How much memory are you running & how was compatibility?
Since you're doing a new build, I would skip the X38 motherboard and get either a X48 or the new P45. The X48 gets the nod if you plan on going to Crossfire at some point. The Nivida boards have had problems for some time, both for overclocking and even corrupting hard drives. Nvidia spent a lot of time in denial, but last I heard, it was working on an updated BIOS to help, but I haven't heard anything about whether or not a new BIOS has been released, or whether or not it actually helps.
I'm using a X48 ASUS Rampage Formula and it works great. Overclocking is very simple. The fact is, I took my CPU up to 4.1ghz by simply changing the multiplier and raising the CPU voltage, ram voltage and setting the ram speed, leaving everything else on auto. It was too hot for comfort at that speed, so I dropped it down to about 3.8ghz, again leaving everything everything on auto. It couldn't get any easier. There are a few other good X48 boards out there, but the ASUS board is well worthwhile in my opinion.
I'm running 8 gig of OCZ DDR2-800 ram and have no problems with it. At this point, I don't see a lot of point in getting ram that's faster than DDR2-800, as most of the faster stuff is merely overclocked DDR2-800 from the factory and comes with a qualifier that it may not run at advertised speed in your machine, etc. I just did the overclock myself and saved some money.
I would like to have the option to run Crossfire in the future, so I was leaning towards an X48 board due to the dual PCI-E 16x lanes vs the dual 8x lanes of the P45.
(I'm seeing more & more evidence that the dual 8x lanes can bottleneck the 4800 series cards in crossfire)
Since you're using 8gb of RAM, is it safe to assume you're running Vista 64-bit?
If so, how's software (games & other programs) compatibility, performance & driver support?