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Z68 over P67? Help!

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June 20, 2011 9:40:38 AM

Hi Guys, can anyone give me some feedback on whether someone like me doing a pc build for the first time. I am confused of the benefits of Z68 over P67?. I plan to run 2 x 6970's and would not use the intel graphics anyway. I was also under the impression that the "Lucid Logix" option is best avoided for gamers? Is that right? I also am a little confused with SSD caching? As I read that a SSD boot drive eg OCZ vertex 2 120g and a standard platter eg WD Caviar black for all other storage is still the best option! Any feedback is greatly appreciated. Thanks

More about : z68 p67

a b V Motherboard
June 20, 2011 11:45:45 AM

If you don't plan on using the on chip graphics to accelerate encoding and don't care for hard drive caching then save money and grab a 2500k/2600k and a P67. Hard drive caching is more designed for the budget builder in mind. That way you can use a comparably small cheap SSD with a platter drive to boost performance. Yes a speedy SSD for a boot drive,applications/games is still the fastest with the plater drive for storage.
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June 21, 2011 2:15:43 AM

Goatman,

It doesn't sound like you need the two "extra" features of a z68 but is the $10 price discount really mean that much?

You can disable the IGP and it won't slow down your CF set up.

You are right about a dedicated SSD boot drive being superior to the caching set up.

Grace,

Mutt x
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a c 717 V Motherboard
June 21, 2011 2:57:44 AM

There's no benefits to the Z68 for you, the iGPU would be worthless unless you plan on creating MPEG-2/4 videos, and it would be a terrible waste of a OCZ Vertex 2 120GB SSD for SSD caching. SSD caching is meant as it sounds, using a small SSD 20-40GB + HDD where the frequently accessed data get copied to the SSD as a 'cache' similar to the HHD {Hybrid Hard Drives}. In your case install the OS + Apps on your SSD and Data on the HDD, it's twice as fast or more.

As far as a CPU, if you primarily 'Game' then the i5-2500K is the SAME as the i7-2600K {clock per clock} in Gaming; no difference. The Difference is for Applications that take advantage of the Hyper-Threading e.g. Adobe products, CAD, and Rendering Apps -- Games do not use Hyper-Threading. Example on my i7 980X gaming rig I turn HT off so my CPU, OC 4.6-5GHz, runs considerably cooler.

Tip: SSD {OS + Apps} and HDD {Data} - you can easily change the defaults of Documents, Photos, Music, Downloads, etc -> http://hubpages.com/hub/Windows-7_-_Moving_My_Documents BTW always create a folder first and never make the 'D:' drive the location *always use a Folder*; in 'D:' create Documents, Photos, Music, Downloads folders before changing the default location.

Good Luck! :) 

edit: fixed a typo
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a c 107 V Motherboard
June 21, 2011 3:54:01 PM

I agree with the others -- go with a P67 board.

My recommendations:
ASRock P67 Extreme4
ASUS P8P67 Pro
Gigabyte P67A-UD4
MSI P67A-GD65
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June 22, 2011 6:10:55 AM

jaquith said:
There's no benefits to the Z68 for you, the iGPU would be worthless unless you plan on creating MPEG-2/4 videos, and it would be a terrible waste of a OCZ Vertex 2 120GB SSD for SSD caching. SSD caching is meant as it sounds, using a small SSD 20-40GB + HDD where the frequently accessed data get copied to the SSD as a 'cache' similar to the HHD {Hybrid Hard Drives}. In your case install the OS + Apps on your SSD and Data on the HDD, it's twice as fast or more.

As far as a CPU, if you primarily 'Game' then the i5-2500K is the SAME as the i7-2600K {clock per clock} in Gaming; no difference. The Difference is for Applications that take advantage of the Hyper-Threading e.g. Adobe products, CAD, and Rendering Apps -- Games do not use Hyper-Threading. Example on my i7 980X gaming rig I turn HT off so my CPU, OC 4.6-5GHz, runs considerably cooler.

Tip: SSD {OS + Apps} and HDD {Data} - you can easily change the defaults of Documents, Photos, Music, Downloads, etc -> http://hubpages.com/hub/Windows-7_-_Moving_My_Documents BTW always create a folder first and never make the 'D:' drive the location *always use a Folder*; in 'D:' create Documents, Photos, Music, Downloads folders before changing the default location.

Good Luck! :) 

edit: fixed a typo

Thanks so much. All your advice is great stuff for my ever expanding book of tips! Cheers
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June 23, 2011 7:10:31 AM

Goatman666 said:
Thanks so much. All your advice is great stuff for my ever expanding book of tips! Cheers


Dont know if you had decided yet or not, but bare in mind - even if you are planning not to utilise any of the Z68-specific stuff, you can allways end up one day with your GPU dead or experience problems with it and having it sent back to your supplier for a waranty. Then you end up with no card (if you dont have any spare) and regretting not spending 10 bucks more for a possibility of using built-in graphic.
Now thats only my point of wiev, as I was allways a little bit paranoid about stuff like that :pt1cable:  but I still thing, if its really only a tenner more, you should go for Z68.
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June 23, 2011 7:29:34 AM

Is there any reason not to buy a z68 except cost? it is supposed to be superior to the x58 but I dont' think it offers x16x16 in SLI does it?
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June 23, 2011 8:15:53 AM

lieutenantfrost said:
Is there any reason not to buy a z68 except cost? it is supposed to be superior to the x58 but I dont' think it offers x16x16 in SLI does it?

Not totally sure of the whole Z68 range but I think Gigabyte's UD-7 does?.
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June 23, 2011 8:16:52 AM

lieutenantfrost said:
Is there any reason not to buy a z68 except cost? it is supposed to be superior to the x58 but I dont' think it offers x16x16 in SLI does it?


It doesnt. No native support for 16x16x on 1155.
Z68 offers everything that P67 offers + possibility to use internal graphic + some more features, more or less relevant. But it does not miss anything that P67/H67 have to offer so IMHO its allways a better choice if the money is no option.
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June 23, 2011 8:20:13 AM

Lizard_of_Bodom said:
Dont know if you had decided yet or not, but bare in mind - even if you are planning not to utilise any of the Z68-specific stuff, you can allways end up one day with your GPU dead or experience problems with it and having it sent back to your supplier for a waranty. Then you end up with no card (if you dont have any spare) and regretting not spending 10 bucks more for a possibility of using built-in graphic.
Now thats only my point of wiev, as I was allways a little bit paranoid about stuff like that :pt1cable:  but I still thing, if its really only a tenner more, you should go for Z68.

Cheers mate, No haven't made my mind up yet, but need to soon! Before this whole next "Ivy Bridge" range starts coming in just to really confuse me!?!
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June 23, 2011 8:50:06 AM

Goatman666 said:
Cheers mate, No haven't made my mind up yet, but need to soon! Before this whole next "Ivy Bridge" range starts coming in just to really confuse me!?!


Better make it before 2012 then otherwise you end up with "i will better wait now" headache :D 

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a c 717 V Motherboard
June 23, 2011 3:07:17 PM

Most gamers won't benefit much with the LGA 2011, assuming the specs don't change the benefits will be the PCIe 3 (twice the bandwidth), Quad Channel, 6 and on/off 8-core SB-E {I keep seeing the guessed core # spec change}, and in particular native 32-lanes. All of which sounds great, but unless you're wanting to run a 3/4-WAY the gains will be minimal. The differences on x8/x8 vs x16/x16 on 2-WAY amounts to only a few FPS with very high resolutions. Today's GPU's barely can saturate the x8 PCIe 2.x bandwidth. Nice demo video -> http://www.youtube.com/user/LinusTechTips#p/search/2/NF...

Don't get me wrong, my plan is to replace my current 3-WAY X58 gaming rig running 3 monitors with an LGA 2011, and my plans are to at least keep 3-WAY and maybe 4-WAY. Meaning, if today I wanted to game on a single HD monitor then I'd go P67 and Z68 if the costs were identical.

Keep in mind as mentioned above, many Z68 Gigabyte MOBO have NO iGPU e.g. GA-Z68X-UD7-B3 and no Quick Sync,and the performance between it's P67 cousin the GA-P67A-UD7-B3 is nothing. Also, I would only get a MOBO with NF200 if I was going 3/4-WAY the NF200 add some latency.
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June 26, 2011 7:20:09 AM

Could either of you recommend an alternative to the z68 in light of that information? a good p67 board? I need something that will let me do SLI have some usb 3.0 and be semi decent for Overclocking an i5
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a c 717 V Motherboard
June 26, 2011 6:35:09 PM

I would agree with Leaps-from-Shadows listed MOBOs, and probably add the P8P67 Deluxe as a good alternative, unless the plan is to someday 3-WAY CF, then I'd look at the Gigabyte GA-P67A-UD7-B3.
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July 22, 2011 9:16:49 PM

Looks like the switching between GPU and onboard graphics can be managed by a simple BIOS change and restart without using Virtu so can avoid the Z68 issues with it.
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August 18, 2011 1:08:49 AM

i'm also confused about the Z68 board...it says that some have no onboard graphics...i thought that doesn't matter because the chip, such as the i5 2500K i'm going to get, has the GPU built in? Isn't that all that matters?

Looking at boards on Newegg...all the Z68 board show "Onboard graphics: NO"

So does it matter?

Also since SSD was mentioned...its pointless to get a 64GB and put games on an HDD? Or they should all be on the SDD and only data such as pics, vids and music on the HDD?

So much to consider...i keep second quessing what I'm about to buy.
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August 18, 2011 2:13:14 AM

Vice86,

You are right that the CPU has an integrated GPU but the motherboard has to have a "video out" port of some kind. That's why some can use it and some cant. The easiest way to tell is look at the board's back panel for a VGA or other video out port but it should spell it out in the specs too.

Basically, the Smart Response Tech turns a SSD into a super large cache for a regular HDD. The computer then sees it as a single drive. This makes it faster than a regular HDD but slower than a SSD. That's why some folks put their OS and programs on the SSD for faster speed and use the HDD for storage where speed is not as important.

For the minor cost difference I don't see why anyone would not get the z68 simply for the potential (assuming all other features were the same).

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August 18, 2011 2:24:55 AM

Thanks for the info Mutt.....what about Quick Sync? Is that on any mobo you buy? I guess if you have a dedicated graphics card installed...you can't use Quick Sync anyway though unless you have a 2nd monitor hooked up to the mobo's VGA/DVI? So does a Z68 mobo having the HDMI/VGA/DVI output means it supports the CPU's onboard GPU? I could swear I saw p67 mobos with HDMI/VGA/DVI outputs though...what's the point of that?

But then what Z68 mobo do I get??? There's only 1,306 variations...i hate that.

I need to start a new build thread cuz I'm confused with what exactly I should order. I would love to place my order with Newegg or Amazon tomorrow.
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August 18, 2011 2:52:24 AM

As far as I know you have to disable your dedicated GPU and enable the integrated CPU/GPU to use Quick Sync. You can use the Virtu software or switch from one to the other in the BIOS I believe.

So to use Virtu you have your monitor connected to the mobo port and use the software to switch. If you switch in BIOS you would have to move the monitor from your dedicated GPU to the mobo port. But I am not sure about that.

Yes if there is a HDMi/VGA/DVI output that is for the IGPU. I don't think you would see them on P67 boards though.

I went with the ASUS p8z68 Pro and its sharp as a tack and the BIOS is very good but it has turned off some USB ports after a sleep state a couple of times, lists my HDD in the "Remove hardware, eject media" tray and since it double boots it sort of defeats using a SSD for quick boots. Still might get it again since I never saw any Gigabyte boards that were comparable with VGA output and x8 SLI/CF support. The ASRock brand gets a lot of press but since I keep computers a long time I prefer to stick with the big two.
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