Which Z68 ? / Is the rest compatible ?

First, thanks for the great advice from my previous post, and all the other threads I've read over the past few weeks. I'm a first time builder and your info has been very helpful.

Approximate Purchase Date: 1 week
Budget Range: $600-$850

System Usage from Most to Least Important: I'll be using the computer mostly to stream HD video (to both my TV and monitor), internet, normal Office multi tasking, and a little video/photo editing

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: none

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: no......

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 +

Additional Comments: Basically I want a computer that is going to work for a long time, easy to upgrade, and that doesn't require a lot of extra work on my end. I don't mind paying a little more to future proof.

I'm pretty certain on all of the parts, but I'm still a bit hazy on which Z68 board to get. From the research I've done, it looks like I'd easily be able to get away with one of the lower priced ones ($125-$160 on Newegg). I doubt I'll be doing much (if any) expansion so I don't need a model with every bell and whistle..... just want to make sure I'm getting what's needed (for both present and future).

In short: which MOBO should I get, and are all of the parts compatible ? Any advice / changes to my build would be greatly appreciated:

GIGABYTE GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $129 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128502
MSI Z68MA-ED55 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
$160 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130596


Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K $224 http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.644264

CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible ... $70 after rebate http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL $90 (in a combo deal with the I5-2500K) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.644264

Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $90 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136533

LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer Black SATA Model iHAS424-98 LightScribe Support $25 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106335

Total build will come in around $700 depending on MOBO and case.
9 answers Last reply
More about which rest compatible
  1. Here is a nice M/B and CPU combo:
    This samsung f3 1Tb is a little cheaper than the WD black:
    What GPU are you planing on getting, I'm just assuming you plan on a discrete card since you have a 650watt PSU.
  2. I would also put the ASRock Z68 Pro3 on your "to be considered" list. I have the P67 version of the board, and it works great.
  3. Here is a better PSU:
    XFX 650W XXX Edition 80Plus Bronze Modular $89 ($30 rebate, $4 shipping)
    It is more efficient, it is modular, it is a newer design and it's cheaper after the rebate.

    People shouldn't be considering the old Corsair TX range these days, not because they are bad power supplies, but because they have been replaced:

    You haven't mentioned a graphics card, so if you are not planning on getting one you can get a ~400W unit and that would easily be able to power your build.
  4. Thanks for the feedback.

    I’ll start looking into the ASRock Z68 Pro3. I’m not married to any manufacturer, just want something reliable and haven’t read as much on ASrock. Any benefit to going with the M series over the regular? I can’t see myself adding much more than a second drive, and perhaps an SSD (way down the line) so I’m guessing space won’t be an issue for me. Would the M series give me the possibility of a smaller tower?

    Good point on the PCU, the original build was based on a P67 MOBO + graphics card. Since I’m going with a Z68 I won’t be getting a graphics card and probably won’t need the extra power. The only reason I’d really need the graphics card would if the integrated graphics wasn’t good enough for HDTV (and eventually 3DTV)…. Any thoughts?
    If a lesser CPU would still work I’d probably go with CORSAIR Builder Series CX500 V2 500W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply $45 (after rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139027

    I'm currently in an un-air conditioned apartment in southern France, not sure if that has any baring on the PCU.
  5. Micro-ATX boards don't have room for the fancy bells and whistles, but if you don't mind the small size (my ham-hands need full-size boards) they're still a good choice. And yes, you could shoehorn the Micro-ATX board into a very small case if you wanted to. The main factor there is whether or not you want to leave room for a discrete graphics card.
  6. The onboard GPU is almost definitely enough for HDTV, I don't imagine that it would take much GPU for 3DTV either, certainly achievable with the kind of GPU that you could run on a 400W PSU. If you want to add a gaming level graphics card then you'd probably be better off sticking with the XFX unit.

    I'd prefer not to go for a Corsair CX. I know you wouldn't be saving as much but I'd prefer to spend a bit more and a get power supply with no question marks over it:
    Antec High Current Gamer HCG-400 80Plus Bronze $60 ($15 rebate)
    I believe this has a higher temperature rating than the Corsair CX series. According to the Corsair website, even the V2s only have a rating of 30C, they are probably capable of exceeding this temperature, but if they haven't specified this then you can't really take it for granted.
    Whereas the High Current Gamer series is rated to at least 40C.

    If you know where to get a power cord from you could get this:
    Antec Earthwatts Green EA-380D 80Plus Bronze $40
  7. Are ham hands worse than Sausage fingers? Either way you sold me on the full size model.

    Thanks a ton for the info about the power supplies. I used the power supply calculator at http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine and put a few possible future additions. It recommended I go with a 404W. I think I’ll go with the Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-520 ($60) which would give some expansion options. My only hesitation is the lack of reviews/user comments I have found about the High Current Gamer Series, but the rest of the Antec products look like they’re very highly rated, just not much on the High Current Gamer Series.

    Anyway, after your help, here is the final build (to be purchased tomorrow) Please let me know if you have any other comments/criticisms/suggestions

    LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer Black SATA Model iHAS424-98 LightScribe Support $25

    Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $90

    Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-520 520W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply $60

    Rosewill RCR-IC001 40-in-1 USB 2.0 3.5" Internal Card Reader w/ USB Port / Extra Silver Face Plate $14

    ASRock Z68 PRO3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $120

    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K

    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL $296 combo with the I5-2400K

    With discounts/rebates will come in at $600.
  8. Here is the very similar ram for $75.99 (promo code till 5/19) without the combo:
    Than you could get the processor with your M/B as a combo $324.98:
  9. Thanks for the info, I believe it's the same RAM. I did a dry run on the checkout and I'm actually able to get the combo deal and discount together: Total savings $43 (everything is turning up Milhouse!).
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