Which one of these four boards should I get?

Shavako

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Ok, I have narrowed my search down to 4 different boards but I'm not sure which one would be the best. I plan to use this mostly for gaming. I'll be running a i5 2500k and plan to OC it but since this will be my first OC I want it to be very easy. I'll also be running a HD 6970 with plans to add a second one in the future. Or possibly a 7970 if they're released and similarly priced by the time I make this purchase. Haven't decided on the RAM yet because I want to make sure it's compatible with the mobo first. So which of these boards do you think is best?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007627%20600176035&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&ShowDeactivatedMark=False&CompareItemList=280%7C13-131-790%5E13-131-790-TS%2C13-130-611%5E13-130-611-TS%2C13-130-610%5E13-130-610-TS%2C13-131-792%5E13-131-792-TS
 
Go for this one
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131806

Or then
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130622

Or then this one
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157271

In order of preference for gaming Asus first, then MSI and the last is the ASrock one.
I can't vouch for the ASrock one since I don't really like the brand very much because of it's quality, but this pack does seem to have a lot of perks other than the standard in the other 2.
Here's the comparison
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007627%20600158412&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&CompareItemList=280|13-131-806^13-131-806-TS%2C13-130-611^13-130-611-TS%2C13-157-271^13-157-271-TS

Looks like we have only one common one in our lists
MSI Z68A-GD65 (G3) ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

But I still prefer the ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z/GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
For a really compact gaming rig, built for that particular purpose in mind , small, tidy, and has ample of everything other than PCIe slots... :)
 

Shavako

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Are there any downsides to micro ATX vs a normal ATX? I have on in my current system but this one isn't really built for gaming. I could see it getting a bit tight with 2 GPUs and an aftermarket heatsink.
 
A normal ATX would of course be bigger and have a lot more PCIe slots but I doubt if the spacing would be any the different. But with a micro ATX in a Full ATX case you'd have ample space to use a PCIe Raiser and have enough airflow all over. Raisers aren't very expensive and pretty simple to use. Like an extension for the PCIe Slot.
You could always go for a Dual GPU on a single PCB solution..... :) but.... it maybe way to expensive and a long wait, maybe like the GTX590 or a HD6990 or the HD 5970?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814103195&Tpk=HD%205970
 

Shavako

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I've read a lot of mixed reviews on the single slot dual GPUs so I'm not sure if that's something I'm looking for. I have nothing against going for a micro ATX, I was just worried about space. If there's enough room for 2 6970s and probably a Hyper 212 EVO than it would be nice as they're cheaper.

I haven't decided on a case yet either. Right now I'm looking at the Corsair 650D and the CM Storm Enforcer. I'll have to read some reviews on the Maximus IV and see if anyone mentions spacing.

Oh and what are these PCIe Raisers? Would I have to have one if I went with a full tower?

Edit: It's fairly possible that I never go Xfire as well as I'm not really an enthusiast just a gamer looking to build a good rig. I'm just throwing that in there in the case that I do go Xfire.
 

Shavako

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I just meant would I need to have one, or could I do without.

I've heard nothing but good about ASUS boards so I could definitely buy one with full confidence. I'm actually leaning towards the Maximus Gene-Z it seems to have great performance and a lot of features for a mATX. I'm still worried about spacing with a high end GPU and heat sink though. I haven't been able to find any reviews that specifically mention spacing.
 

Shavako

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I still haven't even decided between the Maximus IV Gene-Z and the P8Z68 Gen3 lol. Better OC board/Better looks vs bigger with room for expansion. Sometimes I don't think I'll ever need another GPU enough to warrant the cost but then sometimes I think it would be nice.
 
It all depends on how long do you plan to use the same rig.
If it's for more than 2 years, then go for the board with more room for expansion.
And if you plan to hang around with the rig for the next year and then send it to the HTPC section, go for the smaller option but with the power to deliver.