I7 capable motherboards

hi to all i am looking to build a gaming machine ,
i would like to use and I7 processor, geforce gtx 295 graphics card { but am always open to suggestions} with windows 7,
I would like help with chosing a mother board, ram and sound card that will all run without conflicts.
Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
10 answers Last reply
More about capable motherboards
  1. You need to be more specific - an i7 860 uses one socket type while an i7 920 uses another.

    If a 920,

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128375

    If an 860,

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128404

    Instead of the 295, I'd really recommend an HD 5870. It costs much less, draws less power, and supports DX11. However, its a little less powerful than the 295 but you are unlikely to notice that if you run at 1920 resolution. If and when you actually need more power, you can add a second card. For reference,

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-5870,2422-13.html

    Most of us don't use sound cards any more since motherboard audio has improved a great deal. My recommendation is to use the audio on the mobo unless you have very specific requirements.

    As for RAM, for the 860 you will need 2x2GB or 4x2GB; for a 920 you will need 3x2GB.

    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws 2x2GB DDR3 1333 Latency 7 $89
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231276
  2. Hello and welcome to the forums :)
    Which i7 CPUs are you going to choose ? Socket 1156 or 1366?
  3. The difficulty here is your choice of graphic card.

    As you're gaming I'd also go for the Radeon 5870 as it's pretty much as good as the GTX 295 as Two boxer says and for now you'll be fine.

    BUT

    Although it's still debated, it's looking like running 2 5870s in Crossfire on the current socket 1156 motherboards, whereas you don't get that problem on socket 1366 (same with 2 GTX 295s in SLI).

    So the big point is this: if you see yourself adding a second graphics card in the future then I'd go socket 1366 now (so that's i7 920) so you have that capability ready and waiting. If you don't add a second card then go socket 1156 (i7 860).
  4. Please review the datasheet for i7 CPU's at
    http://ark.intel.com
  5. Unfortunately, although P55 and 1156 can be found after two clicks and a long scroll down . . . the Intel site isn't terribly useful. It's understandable, of course, since they also market motherboards.
  6. Hi Twoboxer,Maziar, i will use the i7 920
  7. miukethekiwi said:
    hi to all i am looking to build a gaming machine ,
    i would like to use and I7 processor, geforce gtx 295 graphics card { but am always open to suggestions} with windows 7,
    I would like help with chosing a mother board, ram and sound card that will all run without conflicts.
    Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


    You didn't give a budget so I will assume money is no object :)

    Asus Rampage II Extreme - $329 w/ $30 rebate
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131352
    Why - Great Power regulation, superb cooling, great features and it just looks so damn cool
    Look at the i7 offerings from Gigabyte, MSI and ASRock if feeling the budget crunch.

    Mushkin Redline 3 x 2G DDR3 1600 w/ 6-7-6-18 CAS timings $ 212.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226052
    Why - lowest timings on newegg for DDR3 1600
    Look at Corsair XMS, Gskill Ripjaws and the OCZ higher end stuff....don't see a reason to go above DDR3 1600.

    Sound Card - The daughter card that comes with the Rampage II Extreme

    Instead of the 5870, I'd recommend twin 5850s, not that I think the 295 GTX is a bad choice, much more so though if you are the type that doesn't keep a GFX card more than 2 years. It won't do DX11, but very little will for the next 18-24 months....and it's not as though DX10 has shook the world. Here's some choices you might consider:

    a) GTX 295 if buying today and gonna keep for 2 years or less and/or you think PhysX is appealing.
    b) Twin 5850's if you think you need DX11 or keeping the cards for > 2 years.
    c) Twin 5850s w/ a dedicated PhysX card (i.e 9800 GT or better) if you stuck between a) and b)
    d) Sit around till between Thanksgiving and XMas and see what shakes outta nVidia's tree (and the impact it has on other cards prices) before deciding

    I'd be hard pressed to find fault with any of the above.
  8. JackNaylorPE said:
    You didn't give a budget so I will assume money is no object :)

    Asus Rampage II Extreme - $329 w/ $30 rebate
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131352
    Why - Great Power regulation, superb cooling, great features and it just looks so damn cool
    Look at the i7 offerings from Gigabyte, MSI and ASRock if feeling the budget crunch.

    Mushkin Redline 3 x 2G DDR3 1600 w/ 6-7-6-18 CAS timings $ 212.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226052
    Why - lowest timings on newegg for DDR3 1600
    Look at Corsair XMS, Gskill Ripjaws and the OCZ higher end stuff....don't see a reason to go above DDR3 1600.

    Sound Card - The daughter card that comes with the Rampage II Extreme

    Instead of the 5870, I'd recommend twin 5850s, not that I think the 295 GTX is a bad choice, much more so though if you are the type that doesn't keep a GFX card more than 2 years. It won't do DX11, but very little will for the next 18-24 months....and it's not as though DX10 has shook the world. Here's some choices you might consider:

    a) GTX 295 if buying today and gonna keep for 2 years or less and/or you think PhysX is appealing.
    b) Twin 5850's if you think you need DX11 or keeping the cards for > 2 years.
    c) Twin 5850s w/ a dedicated PhysX card (i.e 9800 GT or better) if you stuck between a) and b)
    d) Sit around till between Thanksgiving and XMas and see what shakes outta nVidia's tree (and the impact it has on other cards prices) before deciding

    I'd be hard pressed to find fault with any of the above.


    Re budget around $2.500 nz dollars
  9. miukethekiwi said:
    Hi Twoboxer,Maziar, i will use the i7 920

    The one that Twoboxer suggested is good (Gigabyte X58 UDS3R) another good option would be ASUS P6T
  10. Your NZD2500 budget is about USD1850, which is plenty. You've already chosen an i920, so here are the other primary components:

    Motherboard:
    Unless you are a serious overclocker or have a specific need you haven't mentioned, there's little point to spending more than USD180 or so. Choose one on the basis of price in your area:

    Gigabyte UD3 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128375

    Asus P6T http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131386

    Memory:
    There's little need for more than 6GB, nor is there any significant change in gaming performance with memory speeds above 1600. So, you are looking for 3x2GB of DDR3 1600 memory with as low a latency (called CL or CAS latency, or the first timing number in a string of 4 eg 8-8-8-24) as possible without seriously overpaying for it. CL8 memory like this fills the bill:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227365

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226028

    Video card:
    You do not mention your screen resolution. That's important since it determines what vid card is needed. However, given your budget and your early choice of a 295, you really want to grab an HD 5870. With current drivers, it is nearly as fast as a 295 and will probably pass it over time. It also supports DX11 so you won't be left behind in the next generation of games. This will save you a lot of money, and in the unexpected case you need more graphics power, you can add a second 5870 at that time without fear that it will be discontinued.

    Case:
    You will want a case that provides good air flow. While cases are a personal choice, and many will work fine, here's a sample of known good coolers and good cases:

    HAF 932 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119160
    HAF 922 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119197
    Storm Sniper http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119194
    Storm Scout http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119196

    The larger versions of these cases provide slightly better air flow and better cooling.
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