Tag Archives | sandy bridge

Z77 Chipset – Panther Point

51ro87u2ZkL. SL160  Z77 Chipset   Panther PointWith the release of Ivy Bridge on the horizon (currently April 8 ) we are also anticipating the release of the next series of chipsets to go with it – this time it will be Panther Point or 7-series chipsets. Check out the article on Ivy Bridge for a brief overview. In this article, I’m going to quickly touch on the Z77 chipset.

The Z77 Panther Point chipset is the top of the line chipset complimenting the Intel Ivy Bridge CPU. The Z77 chipset is going to be the most advanced of the chipset options (think an upgraded version of the z68 chipset).

Some of you have asked whether it is worth waiting for the Z77 chipset over building a system right now with Z68 (and then upgrading to Ivy Bridge later). While it has not yet been released – so we don’t know how it will perform – we can look at features that the Z77 chipset will have.

There are two major differences between the Z77 and Z68 chipsets. This is native USB 3.0 and slightly different PCIe configuration. Currently, in order to get USB 3.0 onto a motherboard, manufacturers are using third parties.

The most noticeable effect of using a third party is an increase in price, as the manufacturer has to purchase the chips (ICs) from those third parties. With Intel including USB 3.0 natively (for up to 4 USB 3.0 ports), this should mean that the relative cost will be slightly less (in the neighborhood of $20) – granted, when Panther Point is released, the previous generation will likely drop in price anyways.

One could also surmise that native hardware implementation makes it easier for manufacturer’s to build custom configurations.

This is where the different PCIe configuration will come into play.  The new chipset will provide a more flexible pcie configuration for the manufacturers, making it easier to implement multiple card configurations for PCIe 3.0 – wheras currently it looks like the most you can do on Z68 is two PCIe 3.0 cards (at x8/x8), and then not all Z68 motherboards allow this.

The rest of the Z77 chipset configuration is very similar to Z68. Both Z77 and H77 will include SSD caching – the increase in number of options for SSD caching suggests a trend in that direction, but thats for another article.

In terms of overclocking both Z77 and Z75 will be capable, while H77 will not. Similarly, it looks like there will be K (or similar) versions of the Ivy Bridge processors indicating overclockability.

Unlike the Sandy Bridge release, where the enthusiast chipset (P67) was limited with on board video, all version of Panther Point will include built in video. This is likely due to the utility of Virtu (which again, does not affect gaming performance).

 

So on the surface, the Z77 chipset appears to be perhaps only a slight upgrade (some might say that about the Ivy Bridge CPU as well). The new platform may prove to be not worth upgrading from Sandy Bridge, but I’m personally trying to wait until April to build a new system – I plan on diving into Ivy Bridge + Z77 with gusto ^_^

 

Reference

Comments { 0 }

The Ultra Dream Gaming Build

intel sandy bridge e 300x200 The Ultra Dream Gaming BuildWith the release of Intel’s Sandy Bridge E series CPUs, I can now take my Ultra Gaming build dreaming to the next level. Previously I have presented realistic gaming builds, in the ‘mid-range’ and ‘budget’ level categories – these have been based on developing systems of value that will allow you to play video games for many years while staying within a specific budget. In this article, I’m skipping over the ‘high-budget’ build and going straight for the Ultra Dream system.

There is no reasonableness in this build. If you want a build that gets you the best performance value for your money, check out the mid-range budget build. This Ultra Build here is simply an incredibly awesome system, made with the most powerful hardware available. It takes advantage of the increased memory and video bandwidth using all four slots of quad channel ram, and using both 16x/16x SLI video slots. I suppose I could go all out with 4 video cards, but then I wouldn’t have room for the PCIe based SSD, and the unnecessary, but still surprisingly appealing Killer gaming NIC.

I would take it a step further and go all out with custom liquid cooling, but I honestly don’t have the experience with extreme custom liquid cooled systems. I’ve always used air cooling, because unless you are overclocking to the extreme, or using a system like this, air cooling is fine. In this system, I will be using a liquid cooling block for the CPU only. In the near future, I plan on writing up an article on custom liquid cooling, as I started researching it for this article.

The CPU choice is obvious – the i7-3960X is the most powerful. It’s also over $1,000 for the processor alone – but here we aren’t worried about that. The CPU will be cooled by the excellent Corsair H100 As previously mentioned, Asus provides yet again another superb quality motherboard. For the RAM, I chose the Corsair Dominator because of the higher speed (DDR 2133 vs DDR 1600) – also we don’t NEED 32 GB RAM, but we CAN use 32 GB ram, so we take 2 packs of 4.

For the GPU – as it is the ULTRA system, one could easily plug in two GTX 590s for the set. There are two main reasons I am not going with the 590. First, the 590 runs hot – or at least there were problems with this at the release of the card. The performance of the 590 is undeniable, but two 580s is absolutely amazing. If I were going to go with two 590s, I would only do so with a custom liquid cooled system – I wouldn’t want to do so with air.  I also chose the 3GB memory version of the 580 vs the 1.5, as we are going for a large 30″ monitor – possibly two.

small revodrive3x2 The Ultra Dream Gaming BuildThe SSD you might find odd. First off, I’ve always loved the Revodrive concept – it’s basically an SSD slotted via x4 PCIe into the system. The result is you end up with twice the read/write as a normal SSD. The downside is price. I picked the 240GB for operating system and games/programs, with a set of RAID HDDs in the background for storage. I have on the list 2 1TB WD Black Hard Drives to be set in RAID – I would actually go with 5 1TB drives set up in RAID 5, giving the perfect combination of speed AND security. Hard Drives are expensive right now though, so starting with 2 is fine.

The Killer NIC is something that a lot of people might call a way to throw away money. While I wouldn’t recommend the NIC to someone building a “regular” gaming system – benchmarking has shown that Killer’s NICs do have an effect on lowering latency. If I were a hardcore gamer, or “pro” gamer, I would probably look at adding one to a mid-range or high-range gaming build – every little bit helps.

The case I chose because I always wanted the Thermaltake Level 10 – which runs in the $800 range, is difficult to work with, and doesn’t have amazing cooling – but my oh my does it look sweet. The Thermaltake Level 10GT has a lot of improvements. It’s lighter, cheaper, and has excellent cooling. It also can easily fit the Corsair H100 CPU radiator block. It also looks awesome. Check out the Gaming Case article for some other options.

Thermaltake Level 10 GT Snow Edition Case 1 300x276 The Ultra Dream Gaming Build

The Monitor is the 30” I selected on my Gaming Monitors article. You could also go with two 30”, or two 27”, or three 27” – remember this setup has 2 GTX 580s in x16/x16 SLI. Super.

 

That about wraps up this splurge of an article. I surely do love dreaming about systems like this. The total for the above listed is $5000 without the monitor and $6200 with it, so if that looks like spare change to you, then you should definitely indulge. In the future after I put together the liquid cooling article, I’ll likely revisit this and update for full liquid cooling.

 

 

Comments { 0 }

Welcome Sandy Bridge E – a CPU Fit for a King

Welcome Sandy Bridge E, a true enthusiast processor. Intel is between mainstream CPU architectures right now, with Sandy Bridge out and Ivy Bridge coming around 6 months from now (no official dates on that). What they like to do in between is release their enthusiast level processors. Sandy Bridge E processors will run you at least $1000, so they aren’t for the typical pc gamer or computer builder. These are for those folks who love to build a powerhouse system for the sake of building a powerhouse system – and for who can afford it ;). Granted I would love to build a system around this setup, but it’s a bit out of my budget range currently.

325080 intel sandy bridge e cpu Welcome Sandy Bridge E   a CPU Fit for a KingSandy Bridge E brings us two 6 core processors (and later a 4 core), each with hyper-threading for 12 threads. The i7-3960X is a 3.3 GHZ processor which comes with 15MB L3 Cache. The i7-3930K is a 3.2 GHZ processor bearing 12MB L3 Cache. In a few months Intel will also be releasing the i7-3820, a 4 core 8 thread processor at 3.9 GHZ with 10MB cache – this being part of the Sandy Bridge E series and sitting between the i7-2700k and the i7-3930K. The i7-3960X will run you around $1000, while the i7-3930K will be an ‘affordable’ $600.

To play with these delicious 6 core processors, Intel has also released the x79 chipset. The x79 chipset boasts quad channel memory capabilities (up to 64 GB RAM support), and enough PCIe bandwidth to support true x16/x16 SLI, x16/x16/x8, x16/x8/x8/x8, and even x16/x8/x8/x4/x4 – all depending on the specific motherboard of course. Anandtech showed a sparkling review of Asus P9X79 Pro, which looks to be a slam dunk for me. If I were to be building a Sandy Bridge E system, I would surely go with that motherboard. It should be noted that the x79 chipset is more like P67 than Z68 – it doesn’t come with on board video nor does it include SSD caching. Asus has included it’s own version of SSD caching on the P9X79 Pro which you can read about here – however, if I were spending this much on a processor/motherboard combo, I would be sporting full sized SSDs (probably in RAID) and would have no need for the ssd caching feature.

4381 03 asus p9x79 pro and deluxe intel x79 motherboard preview full 300x220 Welcome Sandy Bridge E   a CPU Fit for a KingTo me, the increased performance in gaming over a i5-2500k system is not worth the $$ in terms of value. As we know, there aren’t games which take advantage of 6 cores and 12 threads (one of the reason’s that AMD’s Bulldozer fails). The benefit comes in the video and memory bandwidth increase. As is shown in the Anandtech analysis, games like World of Warcraft actually benefit not insignificantly (13% boost in performance over an i5 system). Still, performance in those games is fantastic in the ‘lesser’ system..

Sandy Bridge E is really for the super enthusiast. It’s part of my dream build that I drool over. So that begs the question: should you consider the Sandy Bridge E? Well, if you are willing to spend $3k minimum to build a computer when a $1200 system can play most games maxed then yes. I myself hope to one day put together a glorious $5,000 gaming system, and I will love every minute of it – but that day is not today. One thing is for sure, that system is going to last you for a number of years. Unless the pc gaming world gets its act into gear and starts putting out games that take advantage of 8-12 cores, PCIe 3.0, and other advancements like quad channel memory and multi-card SLI systems.

For now though, I’m certainly going to have fun dreaming about ultra gaming systems that blow the pixels out of my monitor…keep an eye out for my High End Gaming PC Build icon wink Welcome Sandy Bridge E   a CPU Fit for a King

Comments { 0 }

The Budget Gaming PC Build

The release of Bulldozer showed us that for the meantime, Intel is the king of the castle – for the mid range build (and top end), Intel holds the cake with the i5-2500k for gaming. Now we can take a look at the budget range and consider what sort of budget gaming pc system can be built for those who have a constricted budget.

A quick word: The easiest way to save money building a system is to cannibalize old systems – using partsCorsair Vengeance dark blue radiators 1 300x207 The Budget Gaming PC Build from previous systems. This of course only works if you have built systems in the past, or want to take apart an old premade system. Parts I like to cannibalize are hard drives, optical drives, sound cards, and sometimes RAM (new RAM tech is cheap these days) as these components can be used for a long time. One word of caution; Hard drives can last a long time, but when building a new system it is recommended to acquire a new hard drive as these WILL die eventually so they are better as secondary storage drives in the system (they won’t be accessed as much, so this lengthens their usability).

With all that said, I’m going to lay out the specs for a Budget Build. Similar to how I set up the Mid Range Build, the Budget Build isn’t just the cheapest components available – this is about value. I still want to build a system that will last a number of years and will have the least amount of problems (again, picking well rated manufacturers with good return policies).

In order to reach a ‘Budget’ level, we have to sacrifice somewhere – that area is going to be in higher level game performance. The goal with this system is to be able to play any current game – not necessarily on the highest levels – but also to be able to play most games for the next 3 years or so. This is of course speculative, but it all comes down to finding the best performance for the price range we are looking at.

In the Bulldozer article I mentioned that I was going to look at AMD for the budget build – this is because AMD tends to lend itself to the lower range of spending. While their CPUs are excellent, Intel’s Sandy Bridge offering still tops AMD at the lower level – not just with individual performance, but also with the potential to upgrade to the supremely powerful i5-2500k.

antec 300 beauty 282x300 The Budget Gaming PC Build

I gave you a choice between the H67 and the P67 – this depends on your desire to upgrade in the future. If in 6 months (when Ivy Bridge comes out and the Sandy Bridge prices drop) you decide to upgrade to the i5-2500k – and you want the ability to overclock – then you will need the P67. If you don’t see yourself taking this future upgrade to overclocking path, the H67 will serve you fine.

Changes 1-25-12:  After reviews, reading experiences and feedback, as well as Tom’s Hardware’s charts, it is clear that the HD 6790 is head and shoulders above the 550TI – so I have removed the 550TI.  At this budget level, the money is better placed with the HD 6790.  I have also switched the Antec 300 with the Antec 300 Two – newly released upgrade to this great budget case.

Just as with the Mid Range Build, this doesn’t include the monitor and other peripherals. One can of course interchange between this Budget Gaming PC and the Mid Range Build, and this system is easily upgradeable.

Comments { 0 }

The New AMD Bulldozer CPU – Where does it Stand?

This isn’t necessarily an analysis of AMD platforms so much as it is a look at the new AMD Bulldozer CPU offerings and seeing how they stands up vs the Intel Sandy Bridge offerings. This is with respect to my general approach of ‘value’ building – which tends to land within the mid-range build.

One of the questions most people ask who are getting into computer building is: Do I go AMD or Intel? I can understand a certain appeal for either. AMD makes some very good quality processors at the lower prices ranges, and there is a fair argument for going AMD when building a budget system. For me, it simply comes down to performance and value. How much am I spending now and how long will this system likely last? Right now Intel’s Sandy Bridge CPU systems score very high in the charts and on top of that, the i5-2500k can be overclocked an impressive amount (increasing the long-term value of the system).

AMD’s philosophy is geared towards making multi-core CPUs. Of their offerings, they have 4 core, 6 core, and 8 core CPUs – the Bulldozer FX-8150 is AMD’s 8 core offering which looks to stand against Intel’s impressive 4 core i5-2500k. Intel does not have an 8 core processor – instead they have the i7-2600k, which is a 4 core processor that uses hyper-threading to virtually duplicate the 4 cores creating what is effectively 8.

Here’s the deal though: 8 cores are technically better than 4 cores with hyper-threading used to create an effective 8. The problem that is being experienced right now is that the way Windows is constructed, and the way most games are made, they won’t take advantage of more than 4 cores. This is a rather simplistic explanation – the way AMD constructed Bulldozer is rather complex on the technical level, but in the end it’s all about real world performance.

The short of it is that when put the FX-8150 up against the i5-2500k Sandy Bridge Intel CPU, the Bulldozer offering just doesn’t cut the cake. One would need a game to take advantage of 8 cores (or conceivably at least more than 4 cores) in order to see a benefit over the i5. Considering the i5 is cheaper and performs better, that still keeps us with the Intel based I5-2500k system. The AMD systems generally are more well suited to a budget build approach. I have yet to write up a budget suggestion, but I suspect that I will be looking into AMD’s Phenom II X4 955 CPU, as it performs well next to Intel’s i3-2100 with the right setup.

If you want to read up on the more detailed technical analysis of AMD Bulldozer cpu look here, and for testing on the Bulldozer FX-8150 look here.

Comments { 0 }

Build a Gaming PC – A Quick Look at RAM

In the next step on the road to build a gaming pc, we are going to quickly take a look at memory – which is actually going to be quite simple. Memory is fast. By its very nature, ram is blazingly fast. Sure, you can get some ram that is faster than other ram, but quite frankly, the average person isn’t going to tell the difference between different speeds of RAM.

I run a computer that uses DDR2 ram, and I’m happy with it’s speed. Sure, I can’t run crysis two at full tilt – but the larger affect on my performance is going to be video card and then CPU – those are our bottlenecks. Ram is rarely ever a bottleneck in any kind of normal gaming situation.

That being said, there are still a few considerations to take into account. We are building a Sandy Bridge system, so we will be looking at DDR3 ram which runs at 1.5 volts or lower. Since we do have a choice, we should look at 1333 vs 1600 speed ram. We also need to look at 4 vs 8 vs more GB of ram. As always, I will briefly discuss manufacturer.

Here’s the low down dirty truth. You could probably get pretty much any brand of ram, on any DDR3 speed, and do just fine. Ram is not an issue. I do have a recommendation, and a specific set that I would use, but you don’t need to do that. There pretty much is no wrong answer. I believe that you can spend your money wisest here, but you aren’t spending money poorly by going with a different choice.

1333 vs 1600 – the price difference is minimal for a speed boost, even though as I said you probably wouldn’t notice. I don’t think its worth shaving maybe $20 off the price tag for the slower ram – its just $20, and this is a bombing system we are going to build to last 4-5 years (on #4 with the current, and I can play any game out there). If you are on a strict budget, then go for the 1333 to squeeze it in.

4 vs 8 gb. Most people say if you are gaming, you don’t need more than 4 and won’t tell the difference. I’m here to tell you that I noticed a massive performance boost when I went from 4 to 8 – and I didn’t change ram, I just added 2 more sticks of 2 of what I had (G.Skill DDR2 800 – same exact set).  Always get multiple sticks of ram in Dual Channel. You can get triple channel ram sets, but there is no performance gain (aside from the quantity of 6 gb vs 4), and you hamstring your ability to upgrade (most boards run 4 slots, which means to upgrade from triple channel, you would have to replace all your ram). If you are on a budget, get 4 (2 sticks of 2 gb) and upgrade to 8 later – however for future value, I recommend getting 8 now (2 sticks of 4 gb) – and you would be able to bump that further in the future if you need.

My current recommendation is based off recent benchmarking for higher end sandy bridge ram done at Tom’s Hardware. I’m not going with their best performance/price pick, because that is a Kingston set. #2 is Corsair. Based on reviews, I believe Corsair to produce more reliable hardware than Kingston. That being said, I’ve never had problem with ram sticks, and I’ve used obscure brands before. Like I said before, feel free to use whatever you want.

My RAM recommendation for a sandy bridge gaming pc is Corsair Vengeance 1600, 8GB Build a Gaming PC   A Quick Look at RAM. Thats it. G.skill is a fantastic brand as well. They make a very interesting set of ram – G.Skill Sniper 1600 1.25 volt set Build a Gaming PC   A Quick Look at RAM. The 1.25 volt means less energy used, less heat generated – more overclocking potential – so that could be a good alternative option at the 1600 speed.  I haven’t read any conclusive benchmarks that leads me to put the g.skill over the Corsair, but for a gaming computer you couldn’t go wrong with either of those.

Comments { 0 }

The Video Card – Can’t build a gaming pc without it!

I originally started this article with the thought in mind that I would give an extensive detailed analysis of every video card consideration that you might take when you build a gaming pc, and what the best video card is given an average budget. I unsurprisingly came to the conclusion that I would be writing a VERY long article, with a somewhat disappointing ending. Yes I intend on making a video card recommendation, but in reality there is no ‘best’ video card. There are video cards better than others at certain things and in certain situations, and there are video cards which likely provide higher value than others. I’ve realized that I rather enjoy being verbose, so I’m going to try cutting my articles down a bit and spreading them out. I started this with the intention of making a mid-range sandy bridge build recommendation, so I’m going to speed things along and get to the point.

The thing is that there is a lot of information out there that is pretty straightforward – benchmarks and the like. There is a lot of information out there which is opinion. I try to straddle the line as best as possible since obviously this is my blog with my opinion, but I honestly don’t want to jam my opinion down your throat as law – I want to help you sort through the wilderness of pc building and hardware information that is on the Internet and come to a conclusion that you will be happy and proud with.

I believe the proper way to categorize your video cards is via monitor resolution. How well is a given card going to perform on YOUR monitor. If you have a smaller monitor then you don’t need to fork out the big bucks for a high end card (unless you want to upgrade in the very near future). Other considerations I won’t be talking about in this article are Overclocking and Multiple GPUs. As a quick note, I don’t do those at the beginning – I reserve those options for expansion at a later date (increasing the value of my purchase). I do recommend purchasing a factory overclocked video card though, as they often come with aftermarket coolers and have been stress tested – good value.

Straight up I’m going to address the nVidia vs ATI debate – there is none. Both brands produce high quality video cards which can play all the games out there on whatever settings you wish. Radeon tends to be on the surface an excellent price/cost value, while the nVidia cards provide more extra goodies that have the potential to unfold the value of the card in years to come (though they tend to cost more for the ‘same level’). When it comes down to it the differences are fairly minimal and it comes down to some personal preference, the games you are going to play, and the size of your monitor.

Right now, my goal is to build a gaming pc surrounding the sandy bridge chipset. I don’t intend on building a system around multiple GPUs at the beginning, though I’ll reserve the option later for expansion (I plan on writing an article about multiple GPUs). The Asus P8P67 Pro The Video Card   Cant build a gaming pc without it! motherboard that we chose in the previous article supports multiple GPUs – SLI and Crossfire (so I could go Radeon or nVidia).

Considering that an affordable/average screen size can be 1680×1240-1900×1600, I make my pick the EVGA GTX 560 TI The Video Card   Cant build a gaming pc without it!. This card shows amazing performance at 1680×1240 and can still hold very high settings on most games at 1900×1600. If you have a 1680×1240 monitor now, you would blow any game out of the water, and have room to upgrade your monitor and still enjoy an amazing experience. Also – I always chose EVGA for my video cards. Superb company with fantastic warranties – just make sure you register your card.

As an objective offering, if you wanted the ATI equivalent, going by overall benchmarks, you would want to check out a Radeon HD 6950 The Video Card   Cant build a gaming pc without it!. 99% of people could go with either choice and not notice the difference.

That is all for now (this still got wordy..what the heck?) – I’ll be covering the bit on overclocking in an overclocking article (or series) in the future, and the same for multiple graphics cards.

Thanks for stopping by!

Comments { 0 }

Build a Gaming PC – The Motherboard: Lifeblood of the Computer

The motherboard! This is the big one. This is the most critical of components to scruitinize when you build a gaming pc – or any pc for that matter. Why? It is the backbone of your whole system. It is the central nervous system. It conducts all communications between each of the parts. This piece is so critical to get right. Almost all the problems I’ve had in the past with computer systems have been with the motherboard. It is such a critically complex component – more so than any other that you add to the system. I’m here to make the choice easy.

First off I feel like I should explain this upfront. I tend to lean towards Asus when I pick a motherboard. The reason being all the critical points I just mentioned above. If there were a peice of hardware to sweat over it would be the motherboard. But we aren’t going to be doing any sweating here, because ASUS is a magnificantly supreme manufacturerer of motherboards. The quality is absolutely top notch. The unique technology they provide is amazing (DIGI+ VRM power management, but we will get to that). Most of all, their standards and service are above any other manufacturerr. That being said, I would like to mention that Gigabyte boards are being reviewed extremely well right now – so if you have an issue with me recommending ONLY Asus, then I would say it would be safe to also go with Gigabyte. I would recommend staying away from the cheaper end – essentially, you get what you pay for. There is no ‘supreme deal’ in motherboards. The value is in the assured longevity and service that comes with the product, not in the price tag. And the technological combinations. Many peopel talk about ASRock because it is cheap and powerful, but I have seen cheaper manufacturers in the past (like MSI), and their motherboards always fail the test of longevity for me. Ok so to summarize that block of text, I like ASUS – I recommend Asus. On to the motherboards!

My current goal is to build a gaming pc that is a solid long lasting system, which will be roughly a middle budget gaming computer. I am continuing the Sandy Bridge build I started with the CPU article. This means we will be looking at two chipsets – P67 and H67. My last article I wrote about the P67 problem – this is no longer an issue, the only thing you might run into is some delay in getting a new motherboard, as retailers are still replacing the defective ones.

P67 is the standard chipset of choice for Sandy Bridge. P67 allows system power adjustments (“overclocking”), and for gaming this chipset has tested the best in combination with the i5-2500K. The ASUS P67 boards also comes with DIGI+ VRM power design – a digitally controlled voltage regulator. This is a modulated power system that provides digital control over power output (whereas in the past, one had to tinker directly with the board). In the long run, this gives greater control to anyone who is looking to squeeze more power out of their system (“overclock”). Most of the P67 Asus boards also provide a higher number of power phases – more power phases = less load which in turn will equate to greater longevity of the board.

While my main motherboard recommendation is going to be a P67 motherboard, I do want to mention H67. H67 is an often overlooked, yet still powerful chipset. It has most of the benefits of P67 – minus a few key things. You cannot overclock with the H67. You cannot run two video cards in SLI. The H67 also doesn’t have the DIGI+ VRM power system, and it features lower power phases than most of the Asus P67 boards. That being said, if you aren’t going to get a K variation CPU (i5-2500K), and you are looking to shave off some $$ on the budget, then consider the H67. In the near future, I’ll be writing articles for different budgets, and the H67 will most likely make my ‘low budget’ pc pick.

Summary Thus Far:

  • Due to our Sandy Bridge Processor choice, we are looking at the P67 chipset (H67 for low budget).
  • P67 allows overclocking, and it allows SLI (over the H67)
  • Those two benefits define the true value of P67, as it gives us a wide road for improvement in the future, thus increasing the value of our purchase.
  • P67 Asus boards also have a greater amount of power phases which = greater longevity which = higher value

The motherboard which provides all of the above at the lowest price is the Asus P8P67 Pro Build a Gaming PC   The Motherboard:  Lifeblood of the Computer. For the folks who love to look at benchmarks, here is all the info from Toms Hardware:

Overview

3DMark Benchmark

SiSoftware Sandra Benchmark

Crysis Benchmark

As you can see, the motherboard tops the charts in a couple of those tests, and stays consistantly high in the rest. The value in the power system of the Asus motherboards (aside from my love of asus), pushes this motherboard beyond the rest in overall value. And as we all know, my goal when I build a gaming pc is to create value – a system that will be very powerful and last a long time, with headroom for cheap and easy upgrades in the future.

Comments { 1 }