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Which X79 motherboard?

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May 31, 2012 4:51:44 PM

These two boards from Asus and Asrock seem to have comparable specs. The Asus actually ends being a few dollars cheaper if bought with an i7-3930K at Newegg. They both seem to have plenty of negative reviews (I couldn't really find any X79 board without lots of negative reviews).

Which is the better board?

ASUS P9X79 LGA 2011: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASRock X79 Extreme6: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

More about : x79 motherboard

a c 1160 V Motherboard
a c 306 Ĉ ASUS
May 31, 2012 11:00:00 PM

The Asrock! That is just a basic no frills Asus board while the Asrock comes well equipped!
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June 1, 2012 4:09:44 AM

rolli59 said:
The Asrock! That is just a basic no frills Asus board while the Asrock comes well equipped!


Can you please point out what features the Asus is missing? Doing a comparison of the features I did not notice. Thanks!
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June 1, 2012 4:40:58 AM

was building a system last time and the asus board gave me a lot issues...power, win 7 install...etc etc. did bios flash too.... I switched it out for a gigabyte one and it worked just fine. was a bit odd...
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a c 172 V Motherboard
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 4:48:51 AM

The Asus x79 boards are the best imo. The Rampage IV Extreme is an outstanding board with top quality components, the P9X79 series is also very good and actually has more bells and whistles but lacks the RIVE's "look what I can do" reputation as being the best X79 enthusiast board.

There are other P9X79 boards with different feature sets, take a look on Asus's website for a detailed description
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a c 1160 V Motherboard
a c 306 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 11:15:37 AM

ratsa said:
Can you please point out what features the Asus is missing? Doing a comparison of the features I did not notice. Thanks!

More USB 3 inclusive of onboard header for front panel USB3 connection and more SATA 6 GB ports.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 11:31:41 AM

We'll disagree here. Some folks either don't know or have forgotten all the temp issues on non-ASUS X79 -- I haven't. Especially from MSI & Gigabyte.

...of all the things a boat load of USB ports is bottom on my list. Stability of operation is number #1 on my list = ASUS for X79/LGA 2011.

Further, for a few bucks more I prefer the ASUS Sabertooth X79 with its 5 year warranty and active cooling (fans) to both the VRM & Chipset.

What OC'ers use -> http://www.overclock.net/t/1167939/sandy-bridge-e-overc...
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June 1, 2012 2:47:54 PM

I would like to overclock, but not more than 4 Ghz.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 2:54:12 PM

ratsa said:
I would like to overclock, but not more than 4 Ghz.

Any X79/LGA 2011 can OC to 4GHz. What separates the MOBO's is >4.5GHz, the cooling (VRM & Chipset) and the type power which you only want 100% digital power control.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 3:28:57 PM

Just a a couple little footnotes:

Never exceed the following (2) Voltages: 1. vCore >1.50v (never 1.55v or higher), and 2. VCCSA and/or CPU VTT > 1.30v (never 1.35v or higher) either have proven to permanently degrade the SB-E CPU regardless of the type of cooling.

My preferences: vCore 1.44v (max) and VCCSA/CPU VTT 1.20v (max); together it will take you to pretty much any good set of RAM maximum frequency and a CPU OC 4.8GHz~4.9GHz.
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June 1, 2012 5:20:42 PM

jaquith said:
We'll disagree here. Some folks either don't know or have forgotten all the temp issues on non-ASUS X79 -- I haven't. Especially from MSI & Gigabyte.

...of all the things a boat load of USB ports is bottom on my list. Stability of operation is number #1 on my list = ASUS for X79/LGA 2011.

Further, for a few bucks more I prefer the ASUS Sabertooth X79 with its 5 year warranty and active cooling (fans) to both the VRM & Chipset.

What OC'ers use -> http://www.overclock.net/t/1167939/sandy-bridge-e-overc...


How does the Sabertooth compare to the P9X79 Pro? They are the same price and the features seem to be very very similar, so I am not sure what their target audiences are.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 5:46:45 PM

The big differences are as follows, there's more subtle so included are the links:
ASUS P9X79 PRO (3-WAY SLI), BlueTooth with 3-year warranty
ref - http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_2011/P9X7...
Sabertooth X79 (2-WAY SLI), active cooling for both the VRM & Chipset with a 5-year warranty.
ref - http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_2011/SABE...

Audio Realtek ALC892 vs ALC898 but frankly I don't know the codec differences.
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June 1, 2012 6:05:17 PM

jaquith said:
The big differences are as follows, there's more subtle so included are the links:
ASUS P9X79 PRO (3-WAY SLI), BlueTooth with 3-year warranty
ref - http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_2011/P9X7...
Sabertooth X79 (2-WAY SLI), active cooling for both the VRM & Chipset with a 5-year warranty.
ref - http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_2011/SABE...

Audio Realtek ALC892 vs ALC898 but frankly I don't know the codec differences.


Thank you! Asus does not make it easy to compare specs. Too much marketing talk.

-Is the 5-year warranty an indication of better build quality?

-Bluetooth is not high on my list.

-You indicated that cooling is imprtant, right? Is active cooling noisy?

-I don't plan on using more than 2 video cards. The Sabertooth page says it supports Quad-GPI SLI. Is that marketing speak for 2-way SLI with two dual-GPU cards? Both cards only have 48 total lanes I think.

So between these two, it seems Sabertooth wins out (I'll check out the more subtle differences, but haven't seen anything big).
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a c 172 V Motherboard
a b Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 6:34:48 PM

Asus's marketing team is extremely annoying
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 6:59:39 PM

Longer warranties are nice IF you're going to keep the MOBO for over 3 years. No, you cannot hear the tiny fans, they're drowned-out by the noise of the 120mm etc fans. Cooler = Stability, so IF the plan is to OC then sure it's better to have both the VRM and Chipset cooler.

Correct in every way, "Quad-GPI SLI" means two (dual GPU) cards e.g. GTX 690 etc.

The current SB-E CPU has a total of 40 PCIe lanes, 32-lanes dedicated for the GPU(s) and 8-lanes (PCIe 2.0) for all the other 'stuff' (SATA, add-on chipsets, etc). The question is 32-lanes PCIe 3.0 or PCIe 2.0; AMD allows PCIe 3.0 to run on their HD 7000 lines GPU's whereas nVidia both the GTX 670 & GTX 680 'currently allows' PCIe 2.0 (there's a registry mod to force PCIe 3.0), but oddly nVidia allows PCIe 3.0 on the GTX 690 with the SB-E CPU. All as part of their 'ongoing validation' process.

I have the Sabertooth X79 (home use/SQL testing...gaming once in a while) - http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=2261309

nVidia is a PITA with this quirk:

/edit ref - http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-690-ben...
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June 1, 2012 7:21:25 PM

jaquith said:


The current SB-E CPU has a total of 40 PCIe lanes, 32-lanes dedicated for the GPU(s) and 8-lanes (PCIe 2.0) for all the other 'stuff' (SATA, add-on chipsets, etc). The question is 32-lanes PCIe 3.0 or PCIe 2.0; AMD allows PCIe 3.0 to run on their HD 7000 lines GPU's whereas nVidia both the GTX 670 & GTX 680 'currently allows' PCIe 2.0 (there's a registry mod to force PCIe 3.0), but oddly nVidia allows PCIe 3.0 on the GTX 690 with the SB-E CPU. All as part of their 'ongoing validation' process.

I have the Sabertooth X79 (home use/SQL testing...gaming once in a while) - http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=2261309

nVidia is a PITA with this quirk:
http://media.bestofmicro.com/geforce-gtx-690-benchmark-review,E-D-336181-13.gifhttp://media.bestofmicro.com/geforce-gtx-690-benchmark-review,E-E-336182-13.gif
/edit ref - http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-690-ben...


It is encouraging to see you've overclocked to 4.8 Ghz with the Sabertooth. Are you using the H100 to cool it? (I would be limited to H80 because of my case.) Do you consider this setup to be stable for 24/7 work? (Most of the time it will be idle in sleep mode).

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a c 717 V Motherboard
a c 207 Ĉ ASUS
June 1, 2012 8:53:03 PM

Yes I do use the H100 (medium) though the H80 isn't much different (1C~4C). The OC is validated stable 24/7 and I have several other BIOS Profiles ranging from Stock to 5GHz. The 4.8GHz @ 1.40v is the most stable 'sweet-spot' of the high OC profiles (vs the 1.36v below). Also, yes all of the energy savings enabled so the CPU throttles down to 1.2GHz and it will sleep/wake as long as I don't leave Chrome open (bug in Chrome/won't sleep); if needed sometimes adding a start-up voltage can fix some OC 'wake' issues. In addition I have OC profiles for the GPUs, some games OC'ing helps and other games there's no point 120FPS vs 150FPS -- ditto with the CPU.

As mentioned, I refuse to run >1.44v vCore knowing LLC adds an additional +0.01v~+0.03v, and I also refuse to use goofy LLC and Phase levels. I have nothing to prove and my SB-E CPU is a good one so I want it in one piece. Also, DDR3L type RAM is easier on the CPU.

You can take pity on those with 1.50v vCore and above on the following list because they're all burning-up their $600~$1000 CPU's - http://www.overclock.net/t/1167939/sandy-bridge-e-overc...

4.8GHz @ 1.36v (SQL stable / hardcore gaming or some benching it can drop out) - http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=2320509

IF all you're doing is the Web, YouTube, etc i.e. general easy stuff then load a Stock profile -- it takes less than a minute form Restart->Load a BIOS Profile->Back into Windows. It's silly to run e.g. NetFlix @ 4.8GHz not to mention the additional noise/room heat/kWh.
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