I am looking at upgrading (from a old Nforce2 NF7-M) and the mobo I have in mind is this XFX 790i SLI nForce Motherboard (LGA 775) - MB-N790-IUL9. Does anyone have any experience with the XFX brand? Has anyone tried this motherboard? Otherwise what would be recommended as a better mobo?
I know you like your old Nforce2 and it was a great board but at this time Intel chipsets are much more stable than Nvidia. Nvidia chipsets run hot and unstable and don't overclock nearly as well as Intel's. Also you do realize the 790i is DDR3? How much are you planning on spending on a motherboard?
I am looking for something around the $500 - $560 mark.
The DDR 3 is one of the reasons I am looking at the 790i plus the ability to put in a 45nm chip at a later stage. Also I liked the notes about SLI memory pushing it up to 2000mhz.
What would the Intel board be in this range?
Basically I am looking at getting a seriously impressive and upgradable mobo and then putting say 2gb of DDR3 ram on it and say a Dual 2.7ghz for the mean while with a 8800GT. This would allow me to put in a 45nm chip, another 2gb DDR3, over a few months.
There is no performance benefit to DDR3 over DDR2 but there is a huge price difference. DDR3 won't come into it's own till the end of the year and the introduction of Nehalem and it's integrated memory controller. If you look around the X48 chipset was supposed to be DDR3 only but since prices are still so high and it has no benefit there are more DDR2 X48's than DDR3.
2000mhz is a 500mhz FSB which is currently easily obtainable by a $80 P35 motherboard and some quality $60 DDR2 800. SLI memory is a marketing term used to charge individuals more money for "SLI ready memory", it doesn't mean anything.
There really isn't anything upgradeable at this point because we are at the end of the life cycle of the LGA775 socket. At some point before the end of the year (likely within the next few months) Intel will release their new chips "Nehalem" and their new socket the LGA1366. http://www.tomshardware.com/news/intel-nehalem-core,585...
They will be introducing the new products but there won't be full availability of them and they will not have matured until sometime into the first quarter of 2009 also the prices will be very high at launch and it will take some time for them to settle down.
The 8800GT is a great card but it's getting to the lower end of mid range with the introduction of ATI's new cards and soon to be released cards. A better choice at this time would be the HD4850 or HD4870 as AMD/ATI are starting to fight back and have priced their very high performing products very competitively.
For $500-$560 you could get a Q6600, a P45 motherboard and some good DDR2 800 and a ATI HD4850. Overclock the CPU to 3ghz (which is rather easy) and it would blow away the system you are thinking of building.
1- nForce chipsets has lot of issues even 790i
Stay away from them if you can
2- Stay away from DDR3 as no improvement in performance over DDR2
DDR3 will shine with Nehalem which is not 775 socket and you need a complete new system
3- SLI/CF both have issues and CF is prooved to be much better than SLI
Better to get one high end graphic card than getting 2 midrange in CF/SLI
considering 2 high ends is not an option (cost more than 1200$)
4- 8800GT and even cheaper one is an option if you are going to get 4870X2(2GB DDR5) that is comming soon
5- I believe the following combination will serve well for 2 years
1- ASUS P5Q Deluxe LGA 775 Intel P45 Intel Motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
2- Mushkin 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
3- ASUS EAH4850/HTDI/512M Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The cash is just for a mobo. Looking at spending a total of about $2000.
Maybe an idea like you say is go for a midrange pc and then save up and get a Nehalem when they are available.
I havent had many good expriences with ATI so I would preferably look for a Nvidia card. Just had less problems. Then again I have had a lot more Nvidia's over ATI's.
The thing is that it's not really the motherboard or the RAM that makes a system high end. It is all about the CPU and video, everything else makes very little difference. You want high end then wait for the 4870X2 to be released (should be before the end of Aug.) and Crossfire a couple of those. Add a X48 motherboard like this and a Q9550 or QX9650. There is nothing high end about Nvidia's motherboards they are just high priced.