What motherboard for i7-3930k with 8 ram slots should i choose?

Shad0w

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Hi there,

I am getting myself a new computer with a i7-3930k, but I'm in doubt about what motherboard to go for.

Originally I was planning a Gigabyte X79-UD3 but I think it would be nice with 8 ram slots so that I can get install 16GB extra memory later if I want (may not need it, but I'm using lots of memory when doing 3d work in maya, photoshop etc. - so I figured it would be nice with the option).

Then there's a X79-UD5, but also an Asus P9X79 (standard edition) where the latter is the cheapest one. However, I can't find any reviews of this Asus board as it seems only to be the pro or deluxe edition being reviewed.

Saw a review of the UD3 here on Tom's hardware where it was recommended as much as a P9X79 Pro, but I don't know what I should choose considering that I'd like the option of more ram later? :)

What do you think?

 
Currently, there's a C2/Vt-d 'bug' with the SB-E and so far only ASUS are immune. Plus 'I' only like the 8xDIMM MOBOs.

The ASUS P9X79 (2-WAY SLI, less SATA ports, no ASUS SSD Caching, ALC892) and ASUS P9X79 Pro (3-WAY SLI, Marvell 9128 2xSATA3 slow ports, ASUS SSD Caching, Bluetooth, ALC898). Both are very similar otherwise so I'd expect the same results and perhaps even the vanilla ASUS P9X79 outperforming a tiny bit where 'less is more' from bandwidth shared paths. They should OC the the same; same Phase power.

I've been 'learned' not to rely on so called 'Review(ers)/(s), trust me I felt like tracking one down and giving them a swift kick.

Further, other than listing "3d work in maya, photoshop etc." I don't see any of the ASUS's being a problem, but I do see others being a potential problem.
 

Shad0w

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Thanks for your reply.

Regarding the Asus SSD caching - is that feature even relevant considering the fact that I will be using a SSD for OS and most other programs (apart from games)?

And isn't the cooling supposed to be better on the Pro too due to some heatpipes?

I'm not sure if I understand your last comment correctly - you think the fact that I will be doing 3d work can be a problem? 3d work is definitely the main reason why I'm buying a new computer - gaming is the second, less important, reason :)
 
I am not a fanboy of SSD Caching, so that should answer that question. Cooling I generally prefer the X79's with active cooling to the chipset. If you want a better MOBO then ASUS P9X79 WS, Sabertooth X79 or perhaps the ASUS R4E X79. You're clearly budget conscious, sure it would be nice to get a Ferrari for the cost of a Corvette... Problems are MSI, Gigabyte and other X79's 'now' high temps/high vCore, maybe once the C2 corrected Intel SB-E are released it won't be a problem for non-ASUS X79's. Rendering has nothing to do with 'problems' just manufacturers.
 

Shad0w

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Ok it was just that you said "other than listing "3d work in maya, photoshop etc." I don't see any of the ASUS's being a problem" that confused me before :)

Anyways, do you think it would be worth it to go with a more expensive board such as the Sabertooth?
 
If you have an older version of Maya e.g. 'w/ Dongle' then I like the ASUS P9X79 WS with its' internal USB port. I have the Sabertooth X79 it's fine, but I'd need to know more about your 'other' H/W, future H/W and expectations before recommending one or the other. As far as what I've seen so far any of the ASUS X79's will do the job.

I'm sorry about the confusion above, sometimes I type too fast and the fingers and the brain are out of sync.
 

Shad0w

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Hehe np :)

I'm using Maya 2012, and have no plans of using older versions. Additionally I'll be using Photoshop CS5, Nuke and Mudbox, maybe ZBrush too - and I can't deny that I enjoy gaming too :) But as I mentioned gaming is only second priority.

As for other hardware I am planning on buying an assembled PC this time that I am able to customize quite a bit (and I wouldn't really save much by assembling myself anyways).

CPU: i7-3930k - the shop sells it OC'ed to 4.0 GHz (guess it's easy to do myself, but haven't really been into oc'ing before and I'm not paying extra for it)
Memory: 16GB Kingston HyperX 1600
GPU: For now just my old GTS250, but will replace it with the upcoming nvidia cards equivalent to a GTX570 or GTX580 (if the new ones turns out to be bad, I'm probably going for a 580).
SSD: Samsung 830 128GB or Agility 3 120GB
HDD: WD Caviar Black 1TB (reusing this from my old PC)
PSU: Not sure, but the shop where I'm buying it puts in a OCZ ZS 750W as standard - do you think this will be good enough?
Case: Fractal Design Define R3
Finally I'll be using my current two 22" monitors

I guess that was all the hardware.

I'd like the machine to last me for as long as possible (my current PC is almost 4 years old where I didn't really upgrade anything) but this time I may throw in a new graphicscard later or maybe run SLI if that is a better option at that time (though by the time I feel the need for a stronger graphiccscard it's probably better with a newer card, unless I can find a cheap used card). I could maybe even upgrade to an Ivy Bridge E cpu later (if that's their name), but I actually doubt that I will.

I hope that wasn't too much info :)
 
About the only MOBO ruled-out is the ASUS R4E or any EATX. Don't get any OCZ PSU's too many instances with coil whine. The Samsung 830 is a very good SSD, the WD are fine for single HDD but since they lack TLER I wouldn't RAID them together. The GTX 600 series is due out pretty soon, I expected them with the SB-E but my assumption they'll be available with the IB/LGA 1155 CPUs.

I would either opt for the ASUS P9X79 WS or ASUS P9X79 (standard), you mentioned nothing about 'high' OC'ing e.g. >4.5GHz. The WS is less 'buggy' if you have more complex/unusual peripherals though none were mentioned, and is IMO a better option for l-o-n-g rendering jobs.
 

Shad0w

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I will be rendering quite a bit, but most likely just overnight renders as the longest - but I'll probably be doing that quite often :)

The P9X79 WS is stretching the budget a little bit - do you think it's more stable since you say it's better for long renders?

And yeah I'm most likely not going to OC more than the 4.0 GHz to begin with, so definitely not anything extreme-ish. If I later decide to fiddle with it myself I would be more than happy with 4.5GHz.

The shop where I'm buying the computer has a lot of Corsair PSU's, but will most likely be able to get other psu's aswell like Seasonic etc. Do you have any recommendations? How many watts do you think I should go for considering that I'd like one that's powerful enough to handle sli later? I'd also like the PSU to be silent.

And thanks a lot for your replies, it's very helpful :)
 
ASUS puts the P9X79 WS through more vigorous testing and some of the chipsets are little more commercial, it's also a solid OC'er MOBO. It's a 'nice to have' but based upon what you've stated the P9X79 (standard) should be fine.

Either MOBO is good for a 4.5GHz OC, just keep the vCore, if on air, <1.40v if not between 1.35v~1.40v for 24/7 operation.

I also like both Corsair and SeaSonic, and depending on your kW/h cost, mine is $0.12, factor in ~$10/year for Silver from Bronze upgrade. I normally get the Corsair Professional 'Silver Certified', or in some cases 'Gold Certified' modular or semi-modular PSUs. It depends on 'use and load' 8~10/day or more it pays to get a good PSU. NewEgg had a deal after rebates and free shipping $150 for the Corsair Professional Series HX850, but this second the cost is up +$10 to $160. kWh calculator -> http://imog.us/tools/psucalculator/ PSU size calculator -> http://www.thermaltake.outervision.com/ ; I would peg everything 100% when rendering (TDP/CPU Utilization, System Load, and 30% for Capacitor Aging).

Rendering your priorities should be, if using the GPU -- the GPU(s), RAM the more the merrier, and for an added safety net IMO RAID at least RAID 1. The only differences between you and me are 'what' we Render.
 

Shad0w

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That chart actually returned 1110W :O
I put in two GTX580, 100% load and 4.0GHz with 1.3v vcore, 100% TDP, 30% capacitor aging, 2 harddrives, 1 ssd, 3 regular 120mm fans, 5 usb devices and a blu-ray drive.

Do I really need so much power? I thought a good 850W would be more than adequate? I know I put in more components than what I have now, but I'd like to have headroom to do a few upgrades later down the road.

Btw the memory wasn't Kingston, it's G.Skill RipjawsX 1600 CL9 - I guess that doesn't change a whole lot and that those are good too?
 
Maybe, it depends if you CPU render or GPU render, an OC'ed GTX 580 'can' pull 550W but normally it's 350W~400W under full load, and the SB-E 230W or more depending on OC. The 'problem' is if there's not enough power coming from the PSU it will bottleneck the system if not cause instability -- insufficient power per demand.

Regarding the calculation, you are adding an additional 30% power for capacitor aging which will allow the system to fully function at least for a while anyway. However, most folks simply don't 'get' that ALL PSU's loose capacity. You might want to consider the Corsair CMPSU-1050HX if the GPU is rendering along side the CPU. Otherwise you'll notice progressive slowing and or instability.

Power Consumption:
CPUs - http://www.pcper.com/reviews/Processors/Intel-Core-i7-3930K-Sandy-Bridge-E-Processor-Review/Power-Consumption-and-Perform
GPUs - http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2010/11/09/nvidia-geforce-gtx-580-review/8

It is what it is. Folks get all confused when their PSU's go poof and in some instances so does their system along for the ride in the process. One of the reasons I don't get cheap and undersized PSU's; been there the culprit's in the mirror. Nothing worst than saving $50 to later destroy a $500 GPU + $600 CPU + $250 MOBO; the math doesn't add up in the end. BTW - I was one of those naive folks, and my lesson was blowing (2) expensive GPUs not to mention the PSUs.

Some 'G.Skill RipjawsX 1600 CL9' when combined into (2) sets won't run DDR3-1600 CAS 9 and instead will only run DDR3-1333 CAS 9. If you have a single set of 4x4GB then it will run rated.
 

Shad0w

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Currently I'm not really using the gpu for rendering, so it's only the cpu - but that may change in the future, I don't know really.

I'm definitely willing to spend some extra money on a quality psu that I know will be powerful enough, also taking into consideration that the other components like the cpu are quite expensive - but on the other hand I don't want to go out and spend way too much money on the psu if I don't actually need it :)

Even though the gpu is not rendering along the cpu right now (and I don't know if/when that will be the case for me), but taking into consideration that I'd like this psu to last through some possible upgrades of the gpu (either a new one or sli) and also the fact that a stable system is important (it sucks to realize in the morning that your render crashed :p) - do you then think the HX1050 is well spent money in my case?

It would really suck if I later down the road realize that a 750 or 850W psu is going to be a little insuficient..

If I go for the standard P9X79 that also makes a little more room in the budget for a more expensive psu :)

 
I'm by no means cavalier with my money or advising folks to waste their money. Knock on wood, but after 10K posts I've never had someone complain what I recommended. I can only advise on what's posted here and the Q&A's to get a feeling what's important.

That said, if it were 'my' rig yep it would have the Corsair CMPSU-1050HX. Those calculations are what they are, simple additions of wattage.

Keep in mind, if you suddenly decide OMG I need more GPU's then you're also shopping for a new MOBO on top if it all. Therefore, I try to plan ahead and leave options open "IF" the options are viable. Overkill is better then oopsy replacement.

Heck even the kWh is a consideration and therefore the PSU Certification, and AMPs yeah I too look at those ratings. Trust me, I drive myself nuts all of the time, and I do my best not to be shortsighted. The anxiety of 'Add to Cart' goes almost immediately to excitement when you make the correct choice. I've become good about using Excel and trying various components and costs.

 

Shad0w

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I'm sure you know what you're talking about, it sounds like it :) - I'm just a little surprised that it would be a good idea with such a psu for my build - but on the other hand it does indeed make a lot of sense.

When you say I would need a new mobo if I decide I need more GPU's are you then referring to tri or quad sli? I mean a P9X79 standard should be fine with two gpu's in sli right? I'm almost completely sure that I won't be running with more than 2 gpu's in this system - but adding in another gpu later without worrying about other upgrades is what I'd like to be able to do :)

Also is the CMPSU-1050HX the same as 1050HX? Just a little confused as there doesn't seem to be any psu's named with the cmpsu in front here in Denmark.
 
PSU - run the calculations again. The issue is while rendering the CPU is under 100% load then if you start GPU rendering then both the CPU + GPU will be running @ 100% overnight. Most folks screw-up their systems by under-powering it plus never think about capacitor aging. I said an 850W is sufficient, but then you also mentioned SLI GTX 580.

MOBO - yes I meant if you do 3/4-WAY SLI.

Model - CMPSU-1050HX is the 'model name' for the Corsair Professional Series HX1050 1050W - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139034

BTW - Corsair just added a braiding kits - http://www.corsair.com/power-supply-units/psu-accessories.html
 

Shad0w

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Once again thanks a lot for your help, I'm going to talk with the shop and see if they can install the HX1050 in the computer instead :)
 

Shad0w

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Ok I can get the HX1050 at a fine price so that's all good :) However I got a little bit in doubt regarding the case - now that I'm trying to ensure that my system will run well even with high load and possible sli, do you think the case will be good enough in terms of airflow etc.?

I chose the Define R3 because I'd like a somewhat silent computer (I don't mind some noise though, but I just don't want a very loud and noisy computer), and then the price is also very good for the case.

What do you think?
 
I know nothing more than I can 'Google' about the Fractal Design Define R3 case. It appears to have fans, or places for fans, in all the right places to keep components cool.

The best advice I can give you is to get high CFM/low dBA fans and put them all on some type of fan controller that's either 100% manual or adds thermal monitoring plus automatic fan control. People can get CrAzY with fans, fan controllers and deadening materials.

A good fan is going to cost >$8~$15+/each and fan controller >$25~$60+.

What a lot of folks do by mistake is to find 'good' fans but run them @ 100% then complain that they're too loud. They're really meant to be controlled and should run normally @ 40%~60%, and offer the additional overhead when and if needed to lower spiked temps.
 

Shad0w

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Ah ok :)

It does come with 2 fans, I think I'll just see how it works out and then add in additional fans if needed.

Do you know of any other good case that makes a little effort to dampen noise? I looked at the P183 too, but it's more expensive and it doesn't really seem to offer anything that the Define R3 doesn't.
 

Shad0w

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Yeah I've seen that case and it looks very good - but it's going to be like 2-3 weeks before I can get it and I'd really like to get my new computer as soon as I can, I've been considering the various parts for quite some time already now :)

I know a case can't be considered "silent" on its own, but I guess it does help with noise dampening even though the components are not considered to be noisy and in the end result in a more silent computer - or do you think it makes more sense to go for the best cooling that can ensure that fans doesn't need to run fast?

People seems to talk positively about the R3, but I just got a little worried if the ariflow is good enough in it.
 
Well I had a nice post and 'duh me' accidentally closed the frigging widow.

What I use on gaming rigs:
Koolance internal USB Fan Controller TMS-205 - http://www.koolance.com/water-cooling/product_info.php?product_id=1178
AeroCool Shark - http://www.aerocool.us/accessory.htm

Step down:
Aquacomputer Aquaero - http://www.frozencpu.com/products/13696/
Thermal Fan Controllers - http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l3/g47/c17/s422/list/p1/Fan_Accessories-Fan_Controllers-Thermal_Controllers-Page1.html
Yate Loon fans (or Scythe) - http://www.frozencpu.com/search.html?mv_profile=keyword_search&mv_session_id=ZaWiJcJq&searchspec=Yate+Loon&go.x=0&go.y=0

Cheap but gets it done:
NZXT Sentry-2 (flush face) - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811992005
Fans, take your pick just stay under <30 dBA w/controller or <20 w/o controller.

I've used the NZXT Sentry-2 it works fine; the folks with problems IMO have problems from slamming it or poking the screen too hard.
 

Shad0w

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Thanks for the recommendations, looks nice :) I think I'll have to wait a little bit with the purchase of fans+controller etc. as my budget is already stretched a fair bit with the hx1050, but it would be cool to be able to control the fans in a nice way :)

What's your opinion about "silent" cases though? You think they're worth going for or is it better to go for airflow where the fans could run slower and thus decrease the noise?
 
There are a variety of 'silent' cases, but for your purposes the best way to accomplish near silent is a fan controller, and if needed 'better' fans. If I have a rig that's really OC'ed and with multiple aka high-end then the most silent is water.

If your noise is that aggravating then as soon as you can swing $25 get the NZXT Sentry-2 and later add some fans (top x2/out) that will reduce the heat significantly. Also, if there's room for a 120mm in-front of the PSU on the floor of the case AND it has a filter then have another pulling air in (bottom in).

Otherwise, 'silent' cases aren't really mean for OC'ing and stuffing-in multiple GPU's and etc; you'll end-up overheating.

--

I recently got the Corsair Carbide Series 500R - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811139009 ; dirt cheap after instant, promo and rebate.

Front (2x120mm/in), Bottom (140mm/in) separate purchase, Side (240mm/out), Rear (120mm/out), Top (4x120mm/out) separate purchase for Corsair H100 push/pull. Everything cools well and I tapped into the 3-way built-in fan controller.

I would not consider a 'silent' case because I OC everything plus SLI on cheapo ASUS GTX 560's that have 2x fans/each and would heat the case too much with restrictive airflow.
 

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