? Need a New Motherboard

Hi,

My motherboard is failing so I need a new one. Obviously I will not be able to use my memory (SDRAM) so I will also need new RAM. I have been advised that I should get a new PSU as well to ensure stability (one guy said that the +12V rail must have be >=20A).

I have not made a major computer purchase in a few years so I am no longer current on who makes what. I need some advice on what to get. I need to know which manufacturer to go with and what model if possible. And what’s with all this “chipset” stuff?

I would like to use my current CPU until I can afford to get a new one, this means that I am looking for a socket 478 motherboard. Is the 478 limiting? Is it obsolete? Can I get away with it for a few more years? Of course price is an object, especially since I need to get RAM (not many options here right?) and a PSU, but mobos aren’t too bad—right?

I’ll list the features I need, the ones I’d prefer and like, and the ones I’m guessing I’ll have to take (unless there’s a better soln).

MUST:
AGP 8.0x
IDE 133 (as many connectors as possible)
USB 2.0 (as many ports as possible)

ASSUMED:
DDR 400 (PC3200)
Socket 478

REALLY PREFERRED:
RAID (as many connectors as possible)
Onboard POST LED
BIOS PwrOn pwd (must type password on keyboard to power system on)
4+ PCI slots
4+ RAM slots (4GB+ supported)

WOULD LIKE:
Onboard sound 5.1/7.1 (any particular kind is better?)
Onboard NIC (any particular kind is better?)
SATA (as many connectors as possible)
Dual BIOS
FireWire (as many ports as possible)
PCI-Express

Does anyone know what motherboard would fit these best? What manufacturer should I go with? There are so bloody many these days, each with numerous models. I’ve heard good and bad things about some of them which certainly helps.

I need to order it ASAP so I would really appreciate ANY advice you can give me.

Thanks a lot. :slight_smile:

These are your best options:
Asus P4P800-E Deluxe i865PE - http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=240307
Asus P4P800SE 865PE - http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=240327 <- no firewire (IEE1394) on this one :frowning:
Intel D865PERLK i865PE - http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=240904

I would recommend the ASUS, since they have always made great motherboards, but the Intel is good also.

There is no such thing as a socket 478 with PCI-Express, socket 478 was obsolete 1 year ago. Also, if you require AGP, then for almost all cases, you cannot also have PCI-Express, since PCI-Express was made to replace AGP. For socket 478’s, Intel chipsets give the best performance. Both of those recommendations have the 865PE chipset, which was great for its time.

With the ram, you are still in luck, since as of right now, AMD still uses DDR PC3200 ram, so that is still widely available, and is about the same price as DDR2.

If you can afford it, I reccommend you get this 2x1024 dual channel kit of Corsiar XMS memory:

If not get either Corsair or Kingston Value Ram:


For your power supply I reccomend a Seasonic 430W, Antec 430W or an Enermax 400W+. Preferably the Seasonic if you can afford it. If you can’t afford the seasonic 430W, the 380 should work as well. However, DO NOT get a cheapo 400 watt power supply. Those usually end up failing within months, and can cause damage to your system. Just because you find a power supply that is 500W for around $20 doesn’t mean it can provide the 500W constantly, in fact that is probably just a peak voltage rating. In reality these cheapo 500W supplies you see are more like 350W RMS, and genrally use cheap components (i.e. crappy capacitors, cheap wiring, etc).
Antec: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817103928
Enermax: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?Submit=ENE&N=2010320058+50001400&Subcategory=58&description=&srchInDesc=&minPrice=&maxPrice=
Seasonic 430: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817151023
Seasonic 380: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817151022