Been a few years since my last build and this PC needs to have a few particular features; namely:
- At least one external Firewire port (1394), preferably two (for video capture and an Epson pro photo printer I have that uses Firewire). This seems to be the hard option to find. I know I could add in a card...would that be preferable?
- Z68 chip (supports Intel Smart Response)
- USB 3.0
- Supports Support Intel Smart Response for SSD + HDD caching (I think I want that, don't I?)
I'm mainly going to use the PC with Photoshop CS 5.1 and Lightroom 4, along with Sony Vegas Pro; all of which are mainly CPU dependent, except for Vegas, which can use CUDA if editing AVCHD files. I would like the board to support vid cards such as a GeForce GTX 570 for some future-proofing.
Right now I think I'm going to get this card, since AVCHD editing will be very occasional and I want a quiet PC:
I already bought a Cooler Master HAF 912 case, PSU, and the CPU.
I just need a little nudge in the right direction for a solid mobo. I'm not an overclocker or tinkerer once a machine is put together, but I do want all the parts to work nicely together (and fast!) without too much fuss and with a lot of dependability.
I'd like to spend less than $150 on the mobo. I've built several PCs with Intel and Gigabyte brand boards...
Thanks for the suggestions. I had seen all the above mentioned boards. I confess I'm afraid to pull the trigger on any of them; seems like no matter what board I consider there are not an insignificant number of reviewers who get boards that are DOA or have some boot loop quality. That didn't used to be the case...there were always mobos that had 5 star ratings...(and that were affordable).
Thanks for the input!
I only wish the NewEgg reviews meant much of anything. Anytime you see someone with multiple 'DOA' then just know they killed the MOBO and 9/10 with a bad PSU. It's easy to blame the MOBO's then trying to figure out the root case.
If you want a perfect MOBO then maybe in 'MOBO Heaven' there will be one, not here.
Imagine selling 4K~5K MOBO's, 10~50 reviews <1%, and trying to make judgement calls knowing the failure rates for any MOBO are 2%~3% on average. For the most part, folks will bitch easy as pie but have little need to take the time to post good experiences.
The ones I posted are rare if ever visitors here, and with (again) any MOBO a 2%~3% failure rate is a fact of life. Update the BIOS, download only the latest drivers (don't use the OEM DVD), get quality components (e.g. good PSU!!!), use some common sense building (IMO breadboard before putting in case), stress test 48 hours @ stock with AIDA64 and 99.9% you'll be fine.
I'm a hobby system builder, and I'm pretty sure my 'customers' wouldn't like the PC failing after a day or two after delivery. Therefore, I run a prolonged burn-in and validations; on a Workstation it's run 4 days (96 hours) straight, followed my 4~6 pass Memtest, and if OC'ed then concurrent running of: OC + AIDA64 + 3DMark11 (or similar GPU stressing) benches for 24 hours.
If it fails and yep I have components fail then better with me, and a notification to the 'customers' stating I weeded-out a bad component and there's a few day delay. NewEgg and others offer the same - Expedited aka Cross-Ship RMA; they'll charge you for the component and later refund once received but the turnaround time can be next day!
I went with the Gigabyte GA-Z68X-UD3H-B3. I'm on Tiger Direct's spam list and their email today had that very board on sale today! Figured it was a sign. ;-)
$15 cheaper than NewEgg after shipping. I've had to RMA some stuff with TG before and it went smoothly; they cross-shipped and refunded the $ on the defective item later, no problem.
I'll let you know how it goes. Thanks again!