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617 posts

Ultimate Geek


#153740 6-Oct-2014 17:23
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im upgrading my motherboard, not sure what to yet..

my question is: what do i look for in a good motherboard?

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  #1148540 6-Oct-2014 19:36
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Much like your other question about windows 7 disk size, how long is a piece of string?

There are dozens if not hundreds of good motherboards, and a big part of what segments them is the intended use.. A motherboard for an  "office/internet" pc differs vastly form a gaming rig, a HTPC, a workstation, etc..
Price plays a large part too. If you want a meaningful answer, outline what your needs are and a budget.






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Ultimate Geek


  #1148568 6-Oct-2014 20:06
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Thanks

I'm looking to do a system upgrade: here are my main uses

1. Flight Sim X
2. Web and Desktop Programming / photos and graphics
3. some gaming

Really all purpose strong machine

Sorry my question is more around when I see a list of motherboards what do the specs mean what do I look for?

 
 
 
 


gzt

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  #1148612 6-Oct-2014 20:47
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If you are planning on keeping it for 3-5 years then get something with regular bios releases. Some boards have a very long product life.

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  #1148839 7-Oct-2014 07:39
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Stick with the main brands - ASRock for budget, ASUS or Gigabyte at the higher end.

Goes without saying that if you are sticking with your current CPU, you need to get a board with the appropriate socket type! Also worth noting that if you are expecting to see a noticeable performance increase from upgrading the board, you will likely be disappointed.

You say you are "upgrading", which assumes the current board is working Ok, so what is the driver for the upgrade - this will certainly shape which board you go for

If you are overclocking (which you may well be if you are playing FSX!) then a board designed to support a stable overlocking environment may be useful, though usually the CPU itself is the deciding factor in a stable OC.

A lot of the differences come down to the feature set, i.e SLI/XFire capabilities, the type of sound chip, whether it has onboard WiFi, the number of USB3 ports, EX-Sata etc - perhaps work out which of these, if any, are important to you.

My current board is this one  paired with an i7 4790k, which I am more than happy with. That said, I probably don't use half the features now that I am less inclined to fiddle with OC settings all the time, so could have happily done with something cheaper!








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Ultimate Geek


  #1148849 7-Oct-2014 07:52
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here is what i mean

http://www.pbtech.co.nz/index.php?z=c&p=motherboard

whats the difference in these, whats good and bad or better between them?

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#1148887 7-Oct-2014 08:43
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kiwis: here is what i mean

http://www.pbtech.co.nz/index.php?z=c&p=motherboard

whats the difference in these, whats good and bad or better between them?


Start with my reply above!

:)

To distil:

 

     

  1. What do you want to achieve with the upgrade? Are you just replacing a faulty component?
  2. What CPU do you have currently? Are you planning to upgrade that as well?
  3. Are you overclocking?
  4. How many other devices to you have, (i.e. internal hard drives etc) and what are they?
  5. What size case do you have?
  6. Do you need SLI or Crossfire? (dual or more Graphics cards)
  7. What is your budget?

 

It is hard to make a recommendation unless we understand these factors.

Cheers




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  #1148894 7-Oct-2014 08:56
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Some have more features than others, thats pretty much what it comes down to.

I may have rushed into my motherboard purchase recently a little too quickly and ended up with a board that works fine, but has limited me in storage upgrade options (not enough SATA ports).

So sit down and work out :

What form factor ? (ATX/mATX/uATX)
CPU support (AMD or Intel - match your CPU) - will it run newer CPUs ?
How many USB ports do I need ?
How many SATA connections do I need - and will I need more in the near future ?
How many RAM slots do I need ? (get 4 if you can)
USB 3 ?
1 or 2 PCI-Express slots for video cards ? (if youre going SLI etc)
Enough power headers for extra fans for cooling ? (Not a big thing as you can just daisy chain off a molex)

And so on....

Edit : And what he said above me because I was too slow at typing ;)





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  #1148959 7-Oct-2014 10:23
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Sorry my question is more around when I see a list of motherboards what do the specs mean what do I look for?


There is no simple answer to that. The 'specs' will be more or less the same on similarly priced motherboards.
You have to match the motherboard to the CPU
Then decide if you want onboard video, how many PCI cards you may want to plug into the motherboard, size (to fit your case) .

Go for a brand with a 3 year warranty.
If in doubt, ask the guy at the store.

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  #1148965 7-Oct-2014 10:33
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1101: 
If in doubt, ask the guy at the store.


Altho, some stores youre better off talking to the cleaner to get helpful information......

Talk to guys at places like Playtech and Computerlounge - certain other stores just don't have a clue...




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Ultimate Geek


  #1148981 7-Oct-2014 10:48
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http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/motherboard-selection-guide,3900.html

gzt

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  #1149040 7-Oct-2014 12:01
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kiwis: here is what i mean

http://www.pbtech.co.nz/index.php?z=c&p=motherboard

whats the difference in these, whats good and bad or better between them?

Once you decide the form factor, cpu, and features you require - that will narrow down the choices to only a few. Make those choices and ask again.

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Master Geek


  #1149122 7-Oct-2014 13:28
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Take one with good solid capacitors ;)

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  #1151212 10-Oct-2014 11:26
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You're welcome to give us a call or pop in-store to discuss the differences between certain boards; there is a fair bit of experience between the staff that work here :)

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