Help choosing the right Intel mobo

ista

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Jun 26, 2011
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I would appreciate any help you can provide me. I plan to buy this month a new build and I need to decide which motherboard I will use. This is the new build:

Intel i3 2100
G-Skill 4Gb DDR3 1333Mhz
Artic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro Rev2
Novatech PowerStation BE 750W Silent ATX2 PSU
BitFenix Outlaw Case
HANNS.G HL195ABB WLED 18.5" VGA Monitor (1366x768)

About the Graphics Card, I actually own a 8800GTS 512mb but I plan to buy a GTX460 or 6850 in a short term and buy a 2nd one (SLI/CF) if I need it in 3-4 months. The PSU is chosen to be future proof for SLI/CF (4x 6+2 PCIe connectors).

I plan to play with this PC: Starcraft 2, BF3, MW3, Guild wars 2 and Diablo III

So, about the Motherboard, the main requirements are to be prepared for good SLI/CF and be ready for Ivy Bridge (That would be the next upgrade of my rig, after the i3 2100, because now i can't afford a 2500K). That's why I think it's better to buy a PCIe 3.0 motherboard (I am not sure if it's really necessary). With a max budget of 120-125£, my options are:

Asus P8Z68-V
http://uk.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8Z68V/

Asrock Extreme3 Gen3
http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extreme3%20Gen3&cat=Specifications

MSI Z68A-GD55-G3
http://www.msi.com/product/mb/Z68A-GD55--G3-.html#/?div=Basic

Gigabyte GA-Z68MX-UD2H-B3
http://uk.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3974#ov

In my humble opinion I think Asrock and MSI are the best options because of their PCI 3.0 ports, but it's been more than 5 years since I don't buy a new computer and I'm very noob. I am also open to P67 suggestions or comments of the whole build

Thanks
 

clay9477

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Oct 19, 2011
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Haha same problem as me, had a hard time choosing a Z68 Mobo. I be going for the MSI one because it has 5 Year Warranty is Military Class II certified.

As far as i know, there is a G3 of the ASUS P8Z68-V. You might want to check that out as it has PCI 3.0 like the MSI. Or you can simply wait for Ivy Bridge. It has been confirmed that it will perform 10-20% better than Sandy Bridge. But i can't wait planning to get Sandy first. All are good boards but they have their flaws too.

ASUS P8Z68 G3: http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8Z68VGEN3/
 

ista

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Thanks for your advices guys. My main concern is becuase Ivy bridge will work with PCIe 3.0, is it necessary to buy a mobo with PCIe 3.0 or a mobo with PCIe 2.0 becomes automatically 3.0 when a Ivy CPU is inserted?

:)
 

ista

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Jun 26, 2011
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Helpful advice. Actually I don't have money enough for buying a i5-2500k and its right mobo (because I would like to OC it). So, considering that my monitor has 1366x768 res, my main concern is if the i3-2100 will be enough for running the incoming games BF3, MW3 and GW2. In 2 years I could afford to get a good unlocked Ivy CPU.

So my two options are:

- i3 2100 and cheaper H61 mobo?. Will a H61 mobo will work similarly for a non-OC i3 2100 as a z68/p67 board?. In this case which one would you recommend me? later on I would buy a unlocked Ivy CPU + right mobo. Is it worth it instead of the second option?
- i3 2100 and a future-proof Z68 (PCIe 3.0 and Ivy support).

What would you do. BTW thank so much for your advices until now :)
 

ista

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Jun 26, 2011
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Thanks for your advice again werner. I think with the money I save avoiding z68 motherboard and a SLI-PSU I can afford to buy a H61 motherboard + decent PSU + GTX 460 1GB.
Any H61 mobo could be fine enough? even if it's mATX (cheapest ones are only mATX). GTX 460 1gb should give me enough power at this res?
This is the new PSU I would buy is:
http://www.novatech.co.uk/products/components/powersupplies/nov-psg400.html

Thanks!
 

ista

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Thanks werner for your advice! I think I'll buy a h61 motherboard and invest a bit in a good PSU :)