Motherboard to buy on a $100-$160 budget

davelepard

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Nov 19, 2011
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I am building a new PC and I seem to have everything I need except the motherboard. These are the parts I am using.
CPU: Intel Core i5 2400 3.10 GHz
Video Card - EVGA Geforce GTX 550 TI
PSU: Corsair CX600 600 watt
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB
RAM: Corsair Vengeance DDR3 8GB (2x4GB)
I am not planning on overclocking or using SLI. Would it be worth it to get a motherboard compatible with the "Ivy Bridge" chipsets when they come out? Three motherboards that did catch my eye were the Biostar TZ68k + Intel Z68, the GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD3H-B3 Intel Z68, and the ASROCK Z68 Pro 3, though when reading reviews I read a lot of people had problems with the Asrock one crashing.
-Thanks for any help.
 

PTNLemay

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Sep 24, 2011
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Don't forget the OS, unless you can tackle Linux that's going to be at least 100$.

I too am looking for a case around that budget, and I also want something good and solid that doesn't necessarily need SLI or overclocking (or that ridiculous GPU built into the CPU). I recently came across a pretty neat little thing. http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128512

It has 2 USB 3.0 on the back, plus a front header on the mobo, four 3Gb/sec SATA ports and two 6Gb/sec SATAs, LGA 1155 socket (plus the Z68 chipset). A grand total of EIGHT USB 2.0 ports along the back, plus 3 headers on the board, an HDMI port (so you can actually turn it on if you're missing the video card for some reason, I personally hate mobos that don't come with a graphic port). And my personal favorite, it has an mSATA slot right in the middle. It's a really cool kind of micro PCI-card thingy that can support SSD drives, they make them as high as 120 GB. This means you can have a respectable SSD right on the mobo, probably one that can hold all of Windows 7 too.

Price is 160$ (for those too lazy to click the link, lol), but this is before taxes and shipping (which in my experience pushes it up to ~120% the initial price).

I'm still researching the reviews before I buy, it has a pretty good 4/5 stars. There are some negative comments regarding DOAs, but all mobos seem to have some of these odd-balls it seems. I half suspect it's just people who don't know how to properly install a board and who damaged something themselves... Anyway, while this is my top contender I am still looking, looking forward to see what others suggest in this thread.
 

PTNLemay

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Sep 24, 2011
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I'm going to have to retract my suggestion of that Gigabyte board, I did some digging and apparently it doesn't have UEFI, it's a graphical variant of BIOS called "Touch BIOS". I honestly don't know much about that (I think UEFI is easier to manage or something), but I remember hearing that BIOS is quickly going the way of the dinosaur, and that every computer is going to run on UEFI from now on.

I figure... if you want to make your computer future-proof, BIOS probably isn't the best thing to use. So I'll keep searching.