Asus Builds Budget-Oriented Z97-Pro Gamer Motherboard

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2Be_or_Not2Be

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"...it won't be all that useful if you're planning to install a third graphics card."

What type of "budget" gamer has 3 graphics cards????? They are NOT budget gamers if they do! A budget gamer opts for a single PCIe-x16 slot since they only plan on running one graphics card.

Frankly, all of the Tier 1/2 m/b can make a sub-$100 Z97 board; they just don't want to eat into the profits of their "higher-end" line. A Z97 with a single x16 slot, support over-clocking, and has 2-4 DIMM slots will suit every "budget" gamer just fine.
 

bob hays

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2Be - I'd say that the motherboard you're looking for is the z97-k/p/c from Asus, all close to the $100 range. And the Z97-A which supports 2-way SLI is around 120-130 (my usual recommendation for a build). I'm certain other companies have their versions too but I just know more about Asus' models.
 

RedJaron

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Absolutely. I'd even go so far as to say a Z chipset shouldn't be considered "budget" at all ( what tight budget can afford a $250 CPU? ) You can get a feature-rich H97 board for under $90. My favorite right now is ASRock's H97M Pro4. The only thing you'll miss from the Z boards is limited OCing and no PCIe lane splitting for multi-GPUs. Neither of which are even considered by people on a tight gaming budget.
 

shrapnel_indie

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"...it won't be all that useful if you're planning to install a third graphics card."

Non-issue if you SLI as NVidia has capped SLI to two cards. AMD cards on the other hand will be forced to only two max with this board.

Then again, this IS a budget board, can't expect to have all the features of the more expensive boards.
 

CraigN

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shrapnel_indie,

All of the false. I'm not sure where you got that information or think that to be true.
From Nvidia's own SLI marketing page:
"Upgrade your rig with a second NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU to enable SLI, the system turbocharger of choice for gamers, which enables everyone’s favorite titles to be played at the highest screen resolutions with every setting maxed out. NVIDIA SLI supports the use of up to 4 GPUs, and thanks to FCAT, SLI is certified by independent press as fast, smooth and responsive."

You just need a motherboard that supports it. Nvidia requires that all cards have the same bus speed (16x/16x or 8x/8x, 8x/8x/8x, or 8x/8x/8x/8x) in order to SLI. That's the only "cap" they have.
 
I am deaf in one ear, and Sonic Radar is the single feature that might make an upgrade worthwhile for me. Otherwise, I have no idea where a sound is coming from; a primary reason I do not really enjoy FPS titles.
 

Mac266

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Well thats fair enough I suppose.
 

Christopher Estep

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That is because this motherboard overlaps TOO much with the bottom-end Z97-C (which is itself just above the non-multi-GPU Z97-A) - also, how much demand is there, even outside the US, for sub-$150USD SLI-capable motherboards? ASUS, in fact, used to have the Z77-K in this price segment - however, the GTX750Ti doesn't even support SLI at all.
 

shrapnel_indie

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I'm not sure where I read that before now myself (and can't seem to find it now.) It is quite possible I misinterpreted what I read when I did read it. Thanks for bringing it to my attention so I can correct myself.
 

CraigN

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No problem shrapnel! Hope I didn't come off rude, that wasn't the intent.

It is true though you are limited to two way SLI on boards with 3 PCIE slots that are configured as 8x/8x/4x, though.
 
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