New 775 motherboard needed

  Arthur Scrimshaw 18:38 13 Apr 2007

Last year I upgraded my cpu to a E6400 core 2 duo and bought an Asrock 775 dual-vsta motherboard so I could use my old AGP card (a 6600gt) and DDR pc2700 memory. The intention was to upgrade the memory to DDRII and a pci-e graphics card when funds allowed. (The m/board has AGP and PCI-e slots as well as 2xDDR and 2xDDRII memory slots.)
Today I bought a BFG 8800 GTS graphics card, and this installed ok up to the point when I installed the new drivers, the pc refused to load into Windows (XP Home)I removed the (cd supplied) drivers and re-installed the latest drivers from the BFG website with no iprovement.
Checking the ASrock website, it seems this m/board doesn't support the 8800 gpus.
So I have suppose I have to get a new m/board and I guess some DDRII memory. Anyone got any suggestions (not too expensive) or better still if anyone has got an 8800 GTS working with my existing m/board?

  Arthur Scrimshaw 18:54 13 Apr 2007

If I have to get a new m/board, I would like it to have SATAII, and four memory slots. Not asking too much? Might consider an Sli board but it's not essential.

  HappyTrucker 19:21 13 Apr 2007

Now of course, it depends what your definition of expensive is. Over £100? Around £100?

I've just upgraded to a PC with an ASUS P5B-E Plus board in it. No SLi, and the card would use your PCI-e slot and the PCI slot just below it, leaving just 1 free. I know some people have lost faith in Asus over recent months etc but this is my first Intel based PC for quite a while and the system's stable as anything.

SATA 3Gb/s, 1 IDE connector for CD/DVD drive and 1 HD, 4 memory slots to take up to 8GB DDR800 (PC6400?). I think it will accept lower rated RAM down to DDR533 or 667 which would be a little cheaper I suppose. Running an XFX 8800GTS 640MB card with no problems. Make sure the PSU is handy though too!! Big buggers them GTS cards aren't they? I wouldn't like to try and get a GTX in the case!!

Downside? I don't know if you'd HAVE to get a SATA drive now for your OS or if you can put it on the channel with the DVD/CD recorder. It would probably slow the disk transfer rates down, so maybe not a good idea.

  Arthur Scrimshaw 19:41 13 Apr 2007

I've already got a SATA drive running with the os installed, in fact it's a SATAII but 'geared down' to SATA with a jumper lnk which I guess i could just remove to bring it back to full speed. The lack of pci slots wouldn't be a problem as I'm only using one at present (for a wireless card) Does it feature RAID? Just thinking about future upgrades.
You're right about the size of the card, I couldn't believe how big it was, made my 6600gt look a bit undernourished. I had to move my hard drives to get it to fit.
I'll check out this motherboard, what's your take on the memory, I've not really paid to much attention recently to the latest trends?

  HappyTrucker 22:22 13 Apr 2007

Manual for the board says RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 (or more accurately apparently 1 + 0). I don't use RAID myself. Just can't be bothered with the data duplication in mirroring or the hassles of striping.

Regarding RAM, I just went with advice from the builder. For the first time in a while I had the unit built for me (no time to do it myself). The board is stated as supporting DDR800, and due to the way these things work is backwards compatible. I'm sure the guy who built it up said that while he was waiting for the RAM to arrive he was testing the system with the next level UP. The DIMM slots are Dual Channel capable apparently. I'd have a look at Crucial for price comparisons.

So far I'm happy with the performance. Sound is on-board 7.1 with S/PDIF output also. There is a version of the board with built-in wireless, but obviously that's dearer.

Hopefully others will jump in to help with other suggestions. Maybe even someone who HAS mangaged to get your current board working with an 8800?

  Arthur Scrimshaw 08:38 14 Apr 2007


  Crazygeorge3 08:48 14 Apr 2007

i'd go for the P5B-E. If i ever need an upgrade i'll probably get that. There the P5B-E 32x too which has the 680i Sli

  Arthur Scrimshaw 22:09 14 Apr 2007

I couldn't find the Asus board at Novatech, so I eventually went for a MSI P6N Sli Platinum, which uses the Nvidia 650i chipset and 2gb of 800mhz (PC 6400)DDRII.
I found a review of the m/board on Tom's Hardware which seemed very positive, and it was a delight to fit (especially after the Asrock it replaced) fired up first time, and no problems with XP, just needed to be activated. Together with the 8800gts it really flies, Oblivion has never looked so good!

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