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Is there an Easy Motherboard for a Novice?

I need a recommendation on a motherboard for a new build. I'm building a Windows 8 quiet pc, which will not be used for gaming, so I'm going with an Ivy Bridge CPU using the integrated graphics (no graphics card). I will be connecting a touchscreen monitor via DisplayPort along with my TV via HDMI. I've listed my other components below, but it's a pretty basic build. I'm looking for a recommendation for a motherboard that has both HDMI and DisplayPort, has simple fan controls (this might be standard with all motherboards now - it's been 5 years since my last build). The TomsHardware "Mid-Range Z77 Board" review recommendation has A two-way value tie between ASRock's Z77 Extreme6 and MSI's Z77A-GD65 but the MSI board does not have DisplayPort. So, is the ASRock board a good choice for a novice, or is there a cheaper, "easier" board that makes more sense?


CPU Intel Core i5-3550 Ivy Bridge 3.3GHz
CPU Cooler Gelid Tranquillo Rev2
Ram Kingston 16GB DDR3-1600 (2x8GB) - KVR13N9K2/16
Video Card Onboard Video
Sound Card Onboard Sound
SSD Drive Samsung 840 Pro 256GB
2nd Hard Drive 2TB Western Digital Caviar Green (5400 RPM, SATA III, Quiet)
Keyboard/Mouse Logitech Wireless Combo Mk520
Case Fractal Design Define R4
Power Rosewill CAPSTONE-450 w/Silent 140mm Fan
Monitor Dell S2340T 23-inch monitor
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  1. http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8H61M_LECSM_R20/ But for your ivy bridge cpu, I would get this one instead: http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8B75MCSM/. It won't require a bios flash for ivy bridge like the first one.
  2. I like the sound of it, particularly the "Experience the most friendly BIOS interface ever"... But it doesn't have a DisplayPort connection for my monitor.
  3. Best answer
    both those boards have your choice of either vga or dvi ports on the board, and both have a single pci-e slot for a separate card if you decide to upgrade.
  4. Hey O1die,

    I'm not sure I understand? In the ASRock mobo I mention above, NewEgg shows...

    Video Ports D-Sub + DVI
    HDMI 1 x HDMI
    DisplayPort 1 x DisplayPort
    USB 1.1/2.0 2 x USB 2.0

    However, neither of the mobo's you mention show a DisplayPort . What am I missing?

    Mike
  5. You got me there. Never seen one before, since I don't use my pc as a home theatre. Asrock bios aren't that easy to use, but if the extreme 6 has the UEFI bios, then you may have no problems adjusting it to your liking. So if the asrock is within your budget, give it a try.
  6. Best answer selected by NoviceMike.
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