I'm planning my first ground up build for a new gaming rig. I've decided on a Radeon HD 6850 video card and the new AMD FX-4170 for my CPU and now I'm looking for a good, reasonably priced mobo.
My main concern is compatibility with the FX-4170 since the CPU is so new. I've read several forums cautioning to make sure your mobo has a March 2012 or later BIOS update to avoid problems with the 4170. But since I've never built or upgraded a computer before, I don't know anything about updating the BIOS.
Ideally, I want to find a motherboard that I won't have to update in order to plug in the CPU. Alternately, I've heard good things about Gigabyte's @BIOS software which would make the update process easy enough for a way beginner. But I figure you need an OS to use @BIOS and you need a processor to install the OS, but in order to plug in the processor I need to update the BIOS, which I don't feel qualified to do.
Any suggestions or guidance would be appreciated. Thanks!
Any of the 990FX boards should have no problem with running your CPU. If it is an AM3 board, then possibly you's nned a AM3 CPU to update. BIOS updates are outside of the OS so you don't need one installed.
So with the 4170, I would not go overboard with a $200 mobo or anything. Look at offerings from msi, asrock, but I am especially fond of the Gigabyte 990FX UD3. Its a solid board that can easily handle dual graphics cards. It doesn't have UEFI BIOS, but to me thats a bit of a gimmick anyway and really won't help with tweaking.