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Old 07-30-2011, 01:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default SandyBridge Motherboard?

Hi guys/gals,

Just finished school and lookin' for work, so it's about time I get around to building a new computer. I've only slightly kept up with the new hardware so I'm at odds trying to figure out which motherboard to get. Got a few requirements:
1) Needs a minimum of 3 internal sata3 6Gb/s ports
2) Minimum 2 USB 3 ports.
3) 2 PCIe 2.0 x16/x16 for ati crossfire.
4) black pcb would be nice but ultimately not a must hah.
5) No real budget for now, but I'm not against saving money lol

I haven't been able to find a board with 3 internal sata3 ports at all, let alone one with 2 pcie x16 with full x16/x16.

This is as close as i can find Gigabyte P67A-UD7-B3
Though though it only has 2 internal sata3. I guess I could always get an external enclosure for one of my hard drives, though that would eliminate raid.

Here's what i've got so far for some context:
1)Intel i7 2600k
2)G.SKILL Sniper SE 8GB 2X4GB DDR3-1600
3)2 x Western Digital Caviar Black 1.5TB SATA3 7200RPM 64MB Cache
4)OCZ Vertex 3 120GB 2.5IN SATA3 Sandforce SSD
5)XFX Radeon HD 6970
6)Corsair Professional HX750W

Haven't picked out a case, cooling, or anything I may have forgotten yet. I'm using xigmatek rifle atm, has there been any new advances in air cooling?

I will get another 6970 in the future so that's why I want a crossfire board.

Anyway, I'm open to suggestions/revisions for the build, and any help picking out a good motherboard will be greatly appreciated. Worth noting that I'm in Canada I suppose.

Thanks guys.
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Old 07-30-2011, 02:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

I suggest the a case from the Cooler Master HAF series.

As for the motherboard, I'd recommend the Asus P8P67 Pro. It's got 4 SATA III and 4 internal SATA II ports. I wouldn't bother trying to find a motherboard with 2 PCIex16 slots, as there are none in a reasonable price range. Besides, there isn't really a huge difference between x8 and x16 due to the latency of the NF200 chip that x16, x16 requires. It's not worth the extra $$$ in my opinion...

Take a look here:
NVIDIA NF200 x16/x16 vs. Intel x8/x8 P67 Performance Analysis - Final Thoughts :: TweakTown USA Edition
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Old 07-30-2011, 02:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

I'm looking at the Silverstone Raven 3 or the HAF X ^_^ I've got the HAF 932 right now and it's been an awesome case.

Thanks for that link. Interesting info, in light of that I think ill go with the P8P67 pro that you suggested. Thanks a ton Night Fox.

edit~ Looking into CPU coolers I think I'm going to nab the thermalright silver arrow.

Probably going to go with the haf x. Thinking about trying to water cool the 2 6970's with a 360 rad. Running one GPU fan at 100% now is deafening, running 2 will just drown out any sound coming from my speakers lol. The raven 3 won't have room for an internal rad :s

The 90 degree mobo rotation woulda been cool though hah.
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Old 07-30-2011, 03:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

The base of the Thermalright Silver Arrow won't be flat and it will require lapping for top performance.
CPU Lapping Guide
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Old 07-30-2011, 04:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

Ah that's unfortunate. Was always nervous about sanding down a CPU lol. Though I love the way you sealed it. Great guide thank you.
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Old 07-30-2011, 07:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akubane View Post
This is as close as i can find Gigabyte P67A-UD7-B3
Though though it only has 2 internal sata3. I guess I could always get an external enclosure for one of my hard drives, though that would eliminate raid.
Couldn't you use a RAID card?
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Old 07-31-2011, 02:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

Yeah, I mis-read the technical specs on that one anyway. There are 4 internal sata3 connectors on that one, they just aren't consolidated under the same category on the spec list :/

The mobo night fox suggested works as well and is much cheaper Thanks
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Old 07-31-2011, 02:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akubane View Post
Yeah, I mis-read the technical specs on that one anyway. There are 4 internal sata3 connectors on that one, they just aren't consolidated under the same category on the spec list :/
That's cos they each use different controllers - one is the Intel SATA3 controller and the other is a Marvel SATA3 controller (at least in the case of my motherboard).
It is confusing though.
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Old 07-31-2011, 03:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

Ah. Out of curiosities sake, why is that? Is it a just a hardware limitation, allowing only 2 sata3 connections to run effectively per controller?
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Old 07-31-2011, 03:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: SandyBridge Motherboard?

I had no idea until I checked just now - apparently it's because the Intel ones are default (the ones built into the chipset), the two extra ones are an extra add-on chip that isn't part of the default specifications.
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