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Help needed choosing a motherboard for i3 2100

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December 17, 2011 10:16:24 PM

Hello everybody,

I'm planning a new build (my old E4300 from 2007 is not really keeping up with things), and need some help choosing a motherboard. I'm not a hardcore gamer, though I do play RPGs and strategy from time to time, I do moderately-heavy photo editing, browsing, office tasks - the usual stuff. What I do need, and this was my main reason for thinking of an update, is being able to work hiccuplessly with full HD video files (playback, editing and transcoding). And generally, I'd like a system that's faster and more responsive than the one I have now. (And budget friendly too).

Starting from the last consideration, I was thinking to go with an i3-2100 - I don't plan to do any overclocking, and the significantly higher price of an i5-2400/2500 doesn't seem to be worth it based on my needs. I'm thinking about an SSD as a main operations drive (probably Crucial m4 - not sure whether I can afford the 128GB version, though would love to), coupled with a 2TB something-green for storage. Haven't looked into memory yet. Regarding graphics, I was thinking of getting a Sapphire 6850, which has good reviews almost everywhere, but then I started reading about motherboards, and Quick Sync and Virtu and got a bit confused (mainly wondering whether I could just get a Z68 motherboard, keep my 8800 GTS 320MB and somehow survive on that. The 8800 GTS, btw, runs Skyrim on mid-low settings, and I'm quite happy with that - but I can't work with HD video files at the moment.)

So based on the above, what would you recommend? I'd prefer something rock-stable over extra power and whistles; any thoughts/ideas/suggestion will be very welcome.

Thanks in advance,
BG.
December 18, 2011 8:44:45 AM

Ehm, anyone?
a b V Motherboard
December 18, 2011 9:00:17 AM

a h61 board should suit you fine, h67 if you want something a bit better.

ASRock H61M-VS LGA 1155 Intel H61 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

it might worthwhile considering stepping up to an i5, it got twice as many physical core, photo editing would benefit from it.
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December 18, 2011 7:57:24 PM

Thanks, zhihao - I didn't consider h61, but looking on Newegg, they seem to be mostly microATX boards, and that's a bit tight for me - I need to be able to put a dual-slot graphics card and still have two regular PCI slots free (I have a Creative E-MU 1212m sound card, which is dual-slot too).

Regarding i5 - it's 65% more expensive than an i3, and it seems to me that jumping from an E4300 to an i3 2100 should be enough right now - and it will give me a better chance of going for a 128GB SSD.

What I'd still like to know is whether an Z68 mobo + my old 8800 GTS 320MB will allow me to work with HD files, or whether I need to upgrade my graphics card too.
a b V Motherboard
December 19, 2011 12:06:57 AM

i think z68 +800gts would work. you going to get a good improvement on cpu side that is going to help. have a look at whats your cpu usage when you edit video.
!