I am planning to get a good gaming PC and I need your help. I will ask about the parts one by one and first comes the processor. I wish to buy a Core i7 processor but these processors have two socket types:
1- Socket 1366 for Core i7-920 & Core i7-930
2- Socket 1156 for Core i7-860 & Core i7-870
Please guide me which socket type processor should I select to make my rig more future proof. Also I wish to use three operating systems on my PC i.e. Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7, and I think that since Core i7 920 is the oldest of them it may run all these three OSes, for example Windows XP. Kindly clarify and inform if I am right or wrong. I can afford any of these four processors for your information so which one should I choose. Best regards
Well by term futureproof what do you mean? Do you want upgrade options in the future or do you just want that raw power that will be enough for a few years.
If you just want power that is sure to last a few years in gaming than the I7 930 is a great choice with its overclock potential and its raw power out of the box. Only problem with both of those is that the socket is dead there will be no more cpus made for those sockets. So what is out is what you get.
Just to clarify, Windows XP will run with any of those processors, the age of Windows XP won't affect it for a few years yet (since so many people still use it).
As for which socket to buy, Socket 1366 has the fastest processors, but like SAAIELLO said, Intel won't be making any more processors for that socket.
There are rumors that Intel might be making new Sandy Bridge CPUs for Socket 1156, but that remains to be seen. Socket 1156 is more mainstream, and has the best opportunity for future upgrades.
Otherwise, look for features you want from the motherboard:
USB 3.0 (if you plan to keep this computer for a couple years, you'll want this, or an open PCIe slot to add this in later).
SATA 6gbps (probably less important, SATA 3gbps is plenty fast)
Do you need firewire (dying-out, but maybe you have devices that need it).
Thanks for your kind replies. I have selected the processor now and it is Core i7 930. Thanks hellwig for your helpful tips for the motherboard. One thing I wish to know is that what is the use of USB 3.0 as the motherboard I can get has USB 2.0. Anyway I am about to post my next thread in the motherboard section so I would need further guidance.
USB 2.0 is the current widely-used standard. However, USB 3.0 is the new standard. It is much faster. Currently, very few devices support USB 3.0 (you probably don't own any, neither do I).
However, USB 3.0 will eventually replace USB 2.0 in many devices (thumb drives, external hard drives, etc..).
The only reason I mention looking for it now would be so that in a couple years when USB 3.0 is more wide-spread, you won't have to buy an adapter card. Don't worry though, even if you don't have USB 3.0 in your computer, USB 3.0 devices will still work with USB 2.0 computers, they will just run slower.
Lots of Intel motherboards do not currently have USB 3.0, Intel is slow to adopt it. But if you buy a mother board with enough PCIe slots, you can always add a USB 3.0 card in later.