First time builder here, so I've come down to the decision of what CPU to get (i7-920 @$288 vs i7-930 @$294). It seems like the obvious decision is to go with the i7-930, but I read in one of the customer reviews that installing the i7-930 on a non-bootable new rig's mobo that hasn't been updated to the latest bios is impossible (as in, you have to somehow boot the system, flash the bios, THEN install the i7-930, most likely by using another processor). Now, I would love to just spend $6 more and get the next step up, but if I am going to have that issue I have no solutions. Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
Also, if anyone could recommend a good solid mobo to use (I am leaning towards the 1366s) that would be great. At the moment I am looking at gigabits.
it's not a case of "leaning towards" 1366s - you have no choice. All i7 9xx CPUs are socket 1366.
What are you going to use the system for? Personally I'd go with the Asus P6TD Deluxe (because I have no use for SATA III or USB 3.0 at the moment), but there are other good options from Asus and Gigabyte.
Whatever mobo you go for, e-mail the company and ask if the 930 is an issue, and if you have to update the BIOS ask them which version BIOS it is, then contact the retailer if they know which BIOS version is on the boards they're selling.
I'm using the Asus P6T Deluxe (well the V2 model) and an i7 930. Love it, definately recommend.
I'd recommend Asus over Gigabyte at this time. I wasn't very pleased with my last Gigabyte board or their lack of support (compared to what I've had with Asus).
Make sure you're certain you want 1366/i7, because for most people the i5 750 on 1156 is a better choice.
@ LePhuronn -- Medals aplenty for ya!
@ SpidersWeb -- Hmn, I have always been a big fan of Asus. Two things though, did you freshly install the i7 930 on the P6T or did you upgrade from a previous processor on the same board? I'm concerned about having to update the BIOS. The reason I'm leaning toward the 1366 architecture with the i7 is because I am hoping to "future-proof" (I know, impossible) this rig and to upgrade components on an as-needed basis. The ability to drop in one of the upcoming Gulfstream chips when they get down to more reasonable prices is definitely a plus for me. Any reason you would suggest against this? As always, I love the discussion, even if you tell me I'm flat out ridiculous lol. Thanks in advance.
I built it out of the box. Worked first time with the i7 930, never done a BIOS update
If you want to be sure, you'd need to ask whoever you are ordering it off and get them to confirm it.
Mine had the newer BIOS already on it.
Asus P6T Deluxe - requires BIOS version 0209 (SAS controller)
Asus P6T Deluxe V2 - requires BIOS version 0704 (no SAS controller)
Asus P6X58D Premium - requires BIOS version 0402 (USB 3.0 partytime)
I went the 1366 route, I'm loving it. But its not *that* much faster than an i5-750 setup, it is faster, but apparently uses a bit more power, and just common beleif seems to be that for most people putting the extra money towards an SSD or better GPU is more beneficial. I think hard drive speed is under-rated a lot, it wont give you any extra frames per second, but better hard discs mean lower loading times, and I'm impatient as hell!
I also think if you just want to get the i7 because the i7 is king, thats a good enough reason too I don't think either 1366 or 1156 are any more futureproof than each other really, by the time you need a 6 core CPU, you'll probably be buying a new computer.
If you do get a P6T Deluxe as LePhuronn suggested, something to know (that I wish I had researched before I ordered), the only difference between the Deluxe V2 and the Deluxe original, is the normal Deluxe has a SAS controller (they removed it because a lot of customers got ants-in-their-pants about it being something they'd never use, so they removed it). Most people would go SSD on SATA over 15K mechanical on SAS, but a Seagate Savvio 15,000rpm - 2.9ms access times, more disk space, cheaper than an SSD, no issues with the TRIM stuff.... rather tempting!
But yeah definately recommend the P6T Deluxe, or for a little bit more $, the ASUS P6X58D Premium which has USB 3.0 (which may become very useful if external hard discs move to being USB 3.0 instead of e-Sata), but only a tiny bit more you could get the Rampage II......... eck it never ends does it? always a little bit more