Reusing 200GB IDE HD, CD ROM R/W Drive, and Cornea CT1700 Monitor.
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Turns out the motherboard was defective, it still works, but the on board graphics doesn't seem to work, and only the first memory slot seems to work. I had to pull out my old Radeon X300 card.
I thought perhaps it was just a driver issue, but the monitor does not detect it's connected to the on board graphics even during the bios. I downloaded and installed drivers for HD 4200 and it still doesn't work.
Both of the memory sticks are fine, but only the first of the four memory slots are working.
Seems I'll have to return the motherboard and order a new one.
I'm looking for another motherboard to replace this one. It must:
Work with my other hardware (Phenom II 555 BE, DDR3 1600GHz)
Be ATX or microATX
Have at least 1 IDE Header.
Have at least 2 Serial ATA Headers. (4+ preferred)
Be able to hold 4 x 2GB DDR3 RAM sticks.
If it has an IGC, should be equivalent to or better than HD 3200 or HD 4200
Pricing: If IGC - $70ish, If IGC and 2x PCI-E 2.0 x16 - 100ish
If no IGC cheaper than above.
The 2 RAM slots wouldn't bother me since I can't see bumping RAM to 8 GB in the near future (2 years or more)
You have a 2x2GB memory kit, there's no need for 4 dimm slots.
2 or 3 years ago 512MB-1GB RAM was considered sufficient. Now it seems to be 2-4 GB. I wouldn't be surprised if in 2 years it's 4-8GB and in 2 more, 8-16GB. Although a 2 slot Mobo can hold up to 8GB RAM, to do so it must use the denser RAM modules which cost more. A single 4GB modules costs (50 - 100% or at current prices $50 - $100) more than 2 x 2GB modules cost (1600 MHz). I know prices are likely to fall by the end of 2 years, but the denser 4 GB modules will likely stay more expensive than 2 x 2GB. Reason for wanting 4 RAM slots is so that, when needed (perhaps in 2 years), I can just buy a 2 x 2GB kit and add it in to get 8GB.
Biostar TA785G3HD Motherboard is ok for its price.
Your motherboard may not support a 1600 Mhz Ram
As far as i know better not switch to ECS
By "may not" support, do you mean "need not?" Like, can I still use 1600GHz RAM in a Mobo that only supports 1333GHz RAM... only the ram will just run at 1333GHz instead of 1600GHz?
No ECS is not a good board.
Go with Asus, Gigabyte MSI or Asrock, you can't go wrong with any of those.
So was it worth the $30 savings to get an open box mobo?
I personally don't have any experience with Biostar but the reviews look decent. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I figured you'd rub that in. Guess it wasn't worth it... it was a gamble.
But my RAM is 1600 GHz; by suggesting that are you confirming the mobo RAM speed need not match that of the RAM? Would I be able to overclock it to run the 1600GHz RAM at the right speed (such as with Mobo that have 1600GHz (OC)) in the specs?
General consensus seems like ECS isn't a solid choice. However, they are tempting for what they offer for their price. What sort of "problems" have you had with them? If it must have 4 RAM slots, what Mobo would you suggest?
Edit: I managed to unlock my Phenom II 555 BE to a tri-core (cores 0, 1, 3) but was unsuccessful in unlocking all 4. If possible, could you suggest motherboards that allow the option to unlock only cores 0, 1, 3?
Is the HD 3300 better than HD 4200? I plan to be running Windows 7. HD 3300 seems like it would perform better, but lacks directx 10.1 support. Is there any games I'd miss out on because of lack of directx 10.1 support?
I'll likely get what is now a top-of-the-line dedicated graphics card, 1-2 years from now, when they're cheaper.