Question What features do I need on a new motherboard

Myrmidon1989

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So basically I'm hoping to do a PC upgrade for black friday where I change my motherboard, CPU, RAM and case itself. I'm keeping my drives, card and PSU. I've wanted to do upgrades for a long time but everything has been dependent on getting a new motherboard and I need a bigger case in general as it's so tiny it's physically impossible to alter anything inside as it's just a mess of anaconda bundles.

What I really want in terms of a case is something that is huge, something that I can just take the side panel off and I can literally access any part at will with space for my hand, be able to see everything and actually do stuff without having to unplug and remove half a dozen things just to create enough space to see what I'm doing. Thing is I don't really know how to look up big cases beyond looking for cases that support large boards or googling "full towers". I'm not really fussed about bays and I certainly don't care about cosmetics or fluff. Any advice?
 

Eximo

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Suppose it depends on what you want to put in there.

Most full towers will offer you more space between the PSU and GPU, but generally the CPU cooler is the major hurdle since it has to fit between the top of the case and the GPU. You can look at cases that support water cooling, and then not water cool, or you can solve the problem by installing a water cooler in a regular case...

The rest is just cable management.

Phanteks Enthoo series is a favorite of mine.
be quiet! Silent Base series
Popular right now is the Lian-Li O11 Dynamic
 

Myrmidon1989

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I've been wanting to do a PC upgrade for a while now. Primarily a new CPU and better RAM but my motherboard is about 12 years old. I'm hoping to get a new motherboard, biggest case I can find, a new CPU and new RAM. Now the motherboard is kinda the foundational first step here as it'll determine what kind of case I can get, what kind of CPU and RAM I can mount etc. I have a budget of £1000 as I've been putting this off for years.

I'm pretty set on wanting fast and decent DDR-5 RAM and a fair bit of it (I have 8GB of very early DDR-3), I want a very modern and competent i7 that is able to be overclocked (not an initial plan, but eventful down the line), my current CPU is very old an i5 3570k and is pretty much the best I can mount on my aging board. So I want a board that can accommodate these things but is also versatile enough to enable me to continue upgrading for a few years. So what do I need to look for in this board. So far I've been advised to look for:-

ATX (basically just because it's big, I plan on getting the biggest case I can, my current one is tiny and I hate it, I can't do anything inside it).
z590 chipset - Not really sure what this means but apparently it's to do with being allowed/able to overclock stuff, which I will want to do at some point.
Accommodation for card lengths (current is a 1060 but this could change in the future)
Accommodation for extra RAM, I guess minimum of 4 slots?

Is there anything else I really need to be looking for?

Cheers in advance
 

Myrmidon1989

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First things first I'm hoping to get a new motherboard, CPU, case and RAM. My budget is I'm going to say about £1000. I'm definitely not a "more money than sense" kinda guy it's just I've been putting this off for a long time so I have a fair bit to spend. I currently run an i5 3570k and have wanted to get an i7 for a while now when I upgrade. I notice that the highest gen i7's can be similar in price to the new i9's. I'm not very knowledgeable about this kind of stuff at all but from what I've gathered an i7 isn't always better than an i5? It's more nuanced and can come down to the generation of the i5/7/9 itself i.e. I have a third generation i5. I also hear that aside from this i7's can do things that i5's can't outside the simplistic of just being "faster and more powerful". Aside from that could anyone perhaps off a noob friendly summary on what makes the 3 distinct from each other aside from being powerful?

Kind regards
 

USAFRet

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Basically, you're building a whole new system.

Start here, post in the Systems forum:
 

Myrmidon1989

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Basically, you're building a whole new system.

Start here, post in the Systems forum:
Well I don't have time to merge these into one long gigantic thread covering everything now and won't be able to check for replies for almost 24 hours so cheers.... They were 3 separate questions for a reason. I very much doubt I'll get in-depth assistance on all 3 in 1 thread.
 

USAFRet

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Well I don't have time to merge these into one long gigantic thread covering everything now and won't be able to check for replies for almost 24 hours so cheers.... They were 3 separate questions for a reason. I very much doubt I'll get in-depth assistance on all 3 in 1 thread.
You would absolutely get better responses for a single build list, than spread across multiple threads.
 

geofelt

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What is your budget?

On cases, I can suggest a CM HAF XB EVO.
It is the easiest case ever to work on.
https://www.newegg.com/black-cooler-master-haf-series-atx-desktop/p/N82E16811119265
Not good for liquid cooling, but I have no problems with air cooling.
See my sig.

Today, Intel 12th gen of some sort is in order.
On a budget, I5-12600K would be my pick.
You will want a Z690 based motherboard.
You can pick DDR4 or DDR5 variants.
DDR4 being cheaper for both the motherboard and ram.
To date, I see very little difference in performance between the two.

Do not get excited about overclocking modern processors.
The default turbo mechanism is usually the best for performance.
Overclocking may be ok if you are running heavy batch jobs.
 

Myrmidon1989

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What is your budget?

On cases, I can suggest a CM HAF XB EVO.
It is the easiest case ever to work on.
https://www.newegg.com/black-cooler-master-haf-series-atx-desktop/p/N82E16811119265
Not good for liquid cooling, but I have no problems with air cooling.
See my sig.

Today, Intel 12th gen of some sort is in order.
On a budget, I5-12600K would be my pick.
You will want a Z690 based motherboard.
You can pick DDR4 or DDR5 variants.
DDR4 being cheaper for both the motherboard and ram.
To date, I see very little difference in performance between the two.

Do not get excited about overclocking modern processors.
The default turbo mechanism is usually the best for performance.
Overclocking may be ok if you are running heavy batch jobs.
Really appreciate the reply, sorry didn't get a notification and gave up after I thought I had to write all this <Mod Edit> out again in a forced mega thread. You mention Z690 based motherboard? Is that something different from a Z590? Or was I using an incorrect term? As I said it's something a friend told me but I had no real idea what it was other than it was related to overclocking in some way. I'm pretty set on an i7, I want a decent one. RAM 4 or 5 I don't so much mind as they're easy to change for a noob as they're literally sticks. Mainly I need to somehow decide which board to pick. As far as I see it:-

CPU > Board > RAM > Case

I need to decide on the CPU. Then I need a board that allows it. RAM is something of a non-issue I'll just get what's compatible. Case just needs to fit the board and be spacious inside for manual tinkering.
 

Karadjgne

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I have a mITX system with full custom loop and 2x 240mm rads stuffed in it. Zero room for 'manual tinkering'. There's no need for any. Most will build a pc and never have need to do any tinkering whatsoever.

My last system was an air cooled cpu/gpu and Sata SSDs sitting in. Fractal Design R5. That case is massive for a mid tower. Gpu looked like a hotdog in a hallway, nothing but tons of unused, wasted space and air that required moving.

With everything on the motherboard, or so small it takes no space, a larger case is relegated to nothing more than a real-estate hog.

Building an atx system is easy. First decide what you want to accomplish. Performance, silence, looks, form-factor, what. Then look for what will accomplish that. Some have a particular look in mind, a unicorn rainbow puke monstrosity, so will choose components to make that happen, like white interiors, lots of glass, space for controllers, particular brand aios etc. It's on you to decide what your dream result will be.
 

Myrmidon1989

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I have a mITX system with full custom loop and 2x 240mm rads stuffed in it. Zero room for 'manual tinkering'. There's no need for any. Most will build a pc and never have need to do any tinkering whatsoever.

My last system was an air cooled cpu/gpu and Sata SSDs sitting in. Fractal Design R5. That case is massive for a mid tower. Gpu looked like a hotdog in a hallway, nothing but tons of unused, wasted space and air that required moving.

With everything on the motherboard, or so small it takes no space, a larger case is relegated to nothing more than a real-estate hog.

Building an atx system is easy. First decide what you want to accomplish. Performance, silence, looks, form-factor, what. Then look for what will accomplish that. Some have a particular look in mind, a unicorn rainbow puke monstrosity, so will choose components to make that happen, like white interiors, lots of glass, space for controllers, particular brand aios etc. It's on you to decide what your dream result will be.
Well manual tinkering will need to happen whenever you manual tinker so.... Whenever you want to clean, plug in something new, install a new drive, add a new fan, upgrade a CPU or GPU, I'd rather be able to unplug get inside the case and do stuff because there's room rather than having to pull the entire system apart, which is just really dumb, why make 5 times as much work? Bigger case more ease of options as far as I'm concerned. This is what I'm annoyed about though, you can select a fulltower or midtower but beyond that there's little way to filter how much raw usable space you're getting inside to move around and do stuff with.

For me I have absolutely zero care for how it looks aesthetically, it can literally be pink with unicorns I don't care and I only have a reasonable preference for it not being deafeningly loud, not particular bothered, my current machine is very noisy anyway.

I've been at this for 2 weeks on forums and online. I may just pick the CPU and then randomly select a board from what pcpartpicker says is compatible. At least it should work, I can't regret the board later if I still have little idea as to what I'm regretting.
 

geofelt

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The meaning if I3/I5/I7/I9 has changed over time.
Changed from a cores/threads designation to more of a performance level.
For example, your I5-3570K had 4 cores and 4 processing threads.
The I7-3770K had still 4 cores, but 8 processing threads.
That was because each core was allowed to use residual parts of the main core to dispatch a additional thread.
The K suffix designated overclocking capabilities.
Jump forward to today's 12th gen processors.
The i5-12600K now has 6 high performance cores, each capable of dispatching two threads, plus 4 less capable efficiency threads each capable of running a single thread. Total 16 threads.

The 12th gen processors need a lga1700 motherboard.
lga1700 has more pins and is larger than previous motherboards.
Today, only lga1700 motherboards with the top end Z690 chipset are available. Some can run DDR4 ram and others can run DDR5. None can do both. Today, DDR4 motherboards and ram are cheaper than DDR5 and perform similarly.

Your I5-3570K could be overclocked to good effect if you had a suitable Z prefix motherboard,
These days, overclocking is not nearly as effective.
Processor chips are binned and the better chips are used in higher priced models.
Excepting heavy multitasking, it is more effective to let the default turbo mechanism boost a few threads when needed.

What are the make/model of the parts you have now?
Perhaps some can be reused.

If you are into fast action gaming, your challenge will be to find a suitable graphics card at a decent price. Prices have been boosted by miners using such cards.

Lastly, it is time to buy a quality psu.
Absence any reviews, your best guide to quality will be the warranty. 7 to 10 years, nothing less.
 

Myrmidon1989

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The meaning if I3/I5/I7/I9 has changed over time.
Changed from a cores/threads designation to more of a performance level.
For example, your I5-3570K had 4 cores and 4 processing threads.
The I7-3770K had still 4 cores, but 8 processing threads.
That was because each core was allowed to use residual parts of the main core to dispatch a additional thread.
The K suffix designated overclocking capabilities.
Jump forward to today's 12th gen processors.
The i5-12600K now has 6 high performance cores, each capable of dispatching two threads, plus 4 less capable efficiency threads each capable of running a single thread. Total 16 threads.

The 12th gen processors need a lga1700 motherboard.
lga1700 has more pins and is larger than previous motherboards.
Today, only lga1700 motherboards with the top end Z690 chipset are available. Some can run DDR4 ram and others can run DDR5. None can do both. Today, DDR4 motherboards and ram are cheaper than DDR5 and perform similarly.

Your I5-3570K could be overclocked to good effect if you had a suitable Z prefix motherboard,
These days, overclocking is not nearly as effective.
Processor chips are binned and the better chips are used in higher priced models.
Excepting heavy multitasking, it is more effective to let the default turbo mechanism boost a few threads when needed.

What are the make/model of the parts you have now?
Perhaps some can be reused.

If you are into fast action gaming, your challenge will be to find a suitable graphics card at a decent price. Prices have been boosted by miners using such cards.

Lastly, it is time to buy a quality psu.
Absence any reviews, your best guide to quality will be the warranty. 7 to 10 years, nothing less.
Yeah I was aware of the K it's why I got it originally, I didn't realise I couldn't fit anything bigger than a stock cooler in the case though at the time (used to be an even bigger noob). I was planning on keeping my 1060 6GB as it's still sufficient for modern games, I don't care about highest maxed settings really, I just like smoothness and I'm pretty sure my older hardware drags it down, my CPU is underspec'd for a lot of games these days. My PSU I don't know much about other than it being 700watt (seemed beefy at the time so I thought yeah more should be better, doesn't need to use it all if it doesn't need it after all). My board is from like 2012/13 I think, it's very, very old, the CPU I have is the highest model I can mount on it. It's why I want to change my board, CPU, RAM and case but keep everything else.

So finally we're getting somewhere (thank you, greatly I really appreciate this) if I'm going for a high end i7 I need a Z690 chipset then and a LGA 1700, I had little idea of either of these so this is very useful to me.
 

Karadjgne

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My 3770k hit 5.0GHz all core. That's a 1.1Ghz OC boost. That was possible with those older cpus. What @geofelt says about the new gens is spot on. With stuff like turbo boost, higher binned wafers, performance pushed cpus etc, OC has gotten rediculous. Right now, a 0.1-0.2 GHz gain, all core, is about as much as you'll expect to get, which considering the amount of threads games currently use, is pointless amount of wattage.

When a 12600k stock can exceed 500fps in games like CSGO etc, OC or even bumping to a 12700k or 12900k for a few more fps is mental. You are so far above any monitors possible refresh, well into lowering latency areas, which at that level provides extreme minimal changes between the 3 cpus.

So your choice in cpu will be important. More important is the choice of motherboard. You can get DDR4 far cheaper currently, and it's basically every bit as good as the DDR5, but the 2 are not interchangeable and in a couple of years DDR4 will be obsolete, especially when Zen4 drops as that'll be DDR5 too. Which will be the new norm, and speeds will have gone up as the ram matures.

So do you get what's good and cheaper now, or be an early adopter and spend a small fortune on the basis that future tinkering upgrades will be cheaper and have better gains and value.
 

Myrmidon1989

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My 3770k hit 5.0GHz all core. That's a 1.1Ghz OC boost. That was possible with those older cpus. What @geofelt says about the new gens is spot on. With stuff like turbo boost, higher binned wafers, performance pushed cpus etc, OC has gotten rediculous. Right now, a 0.1-0.2 GHz gain, all core, is about as much as you'll expect to get, which considering the amount of threads games currently use, is pointless amount of wattage.

When a 12600k stock can exceed 500fps in games like CSGO etc, OC or even bumping to a 12700k or 12900k for a few more fps is mental. You are so far above any monitors possible refresh, well into lowering latency areas, which at that level provides extreme minimal changes between the 3 cpus.

So your choice in cpu will be important. More important is the choice of motherboard. You can get DDR4 far cheaper currently, and it's basically every bit as good as the DDR5, but the 2 are not interchangeable and in a couple of years DDR4 will be obsolete, especially when Zen4 drops as that'll be DDR5 too. Which will be the new norm, and speeds will have gone up as the ram matures.

So do you get what's good and cheaper now, or be an early adopter and spend a small fortune on the basis that future tinkering upgrades will be cheaper and have better gains and value.
Yeah I am more of the mind it's future proofing and delaying upgrades after this upgrades, as I said I have the money and I'm happy to spend it. I kinda just want to blow £1000 on this regardless, I've been putting this all off the last 3 black fridays now... I have the money it's been sat aside getting bigger just for this little project and has only been getting bigger. I tend to not play multiplayer games where theres hundreds of people running around but I do play co-ops and games like Elite Dangerous where there could in theory be lots of people and ships being handled at once. I know the CPU is also more involved with things like sun rays and shadows in some circumstances over the GPU. It all depends. As I said though I still feel the 1060 is fine for now, I intend to upgrade that later next year some time.

What you say about the boards not running both may have convinced me. So now the plan is pick the CPU, pick a board that can take it with the filters of Z690 and RAM 5 capable. It's all becoming a little clearer at least, this stuff is so scary when you're a noob.
 

Karadjgne

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Nahh, not scary at all. You've been doing this since childhood, just never realized you did. Simply requires a change in perspective. It's pretty much the same as buying a car, building with Legos or mechanno etc. You buy a car, you look for what style you want, according to your driving habits, nobody buys a giant wheel 4x4 dually jacked to the sky with seating for 6 if looking for a fuel economical daily driver in a big city. Then there's the motor, consideration given for stereo upgrades, baby/gf needs etc.

Where you are at is deciding whether or not to go with a 6cyl or maybe need the torque of the 8cyl for occasional towing, must have a trunk or backseat for bass box you already have, or plan to upgrade to a bigger sub woofer etc.

Perspective. Same routine, same game, different names.
 

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