I've been doing a ton of research on motherboards looking to upgrade my older Intel D655PERL/Pentium 3. I've decided I don't want to spend the money on i7 just yet, mainly because I can't find an i7 motherboard that supports legacy gear that I want to transfer, so I'm looking at DDR3 boards, and finally focussing on one, the ASUS P5Q3. I was going to choose Intel's E8400 CPU. Any reason not to choose this board/CPU combo? (Although it was one drawback for me, only 2 PCI slots...so I'll have to dump my fax/modem....)
I'm NOT a gamer/pc'er, just want a very FAST, very RELIABLE system.
FWIW: These are my legacy components I want to transfer to the new board:
Floppy Drive (Still need it for my RAID card)
Sony R/W DVD (IDE)
PCI 1: Sound card (need its analog audio out for my external amplifier)
PCI 2: Fax/Modem
PCI 3: Raid card
Appreciate your suggestion - makes sense - thanks - I'll look into that combo.
Pertinent to your suggestion of combining DDR2 with a Quad core instead of going DDR3 and E8400, I've noticed the majority of P45 boards use DDR2, so I guess that suggests there are often no clear advantages between some DDR2 set ups and some DDR3 set ups......
Meanwhile, I was looking into Intel's DP45SG board as a possibility? It's a DDR3 board with 3 PCI slots and supports Quad extreme cores (no PS/2, floppy or IDE, but I don't much care about that). It seems suitable, but I couldn't find any useful reviews on this board! It (and Intel boards in general) clearly don't seem to appeal to gamers/oc'ers, perhaps that's why there are few/no reviews....... But, for me, I'm going to be running at standard clock speed and what I'm curious about is if Intel boards are considered otherwise generally stable and reliable long term?
I have to add: Trying to choose a mb has been very very confusing for me because there are soooo many motherboards/chipsets/manufacturers to choose from, (and I had a pretty steep learning curve besides). I eventually decided to simplify and focus on boards using just the P45 chipsets. And, still, there are lots of those! One reason the Intel board appeals to me: it's the only board they offer with the P45 chipset - unlike ASUS and Gigabyte, which offer so many ( ), for example, Intel's selection is very nicely uncomplicated (!)
Intel boards aren't popular for a number of reasons. They have good support, and you need it.
When you are talking about the ability to overclock well, you are also talking about stability. The two go together. That is why the best overclocking boards are also the most stable and considered the best buys.
About the DDR2/DDR3 issue: DDR3 doesn't really make a visible difference in performance. For example my own (pretty old) GA-P35C-DS3R would give me about 3% more speed in certain benchmarks if I used it with DDR3 instead of DDR2. Also, if you're thinking about DDR3 because you expect to reuse it with a later build, you need to be careful. Not all DDR3 out there can be used with x58 (i7) builds, for example, because the voltages expected by X58 and P45 are different.
Thanks for the heads up on the Intel boards. I did look up the Gigabyte board you suggested - it's the only one I could see of their UDR family that had 3 PCI slots, so thanks. But if I go back to looking at DDR2 boards (as in this Gigabyte board), why not consider the ASUS boards such as P5Q and P5Q Deluxe, the former with 3 PCI slots (but with no eSATA and no ATI crossfire), but othewise apparently identical?