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I have been considering for sometime between two possible boards for my new system. The Asus P4C800-E Deluxe and the GA-8KNXP(rev 2.0) and after reading the threads on both boards at various forum sites, I am still at a loss for deciding, and hoping someone could answer some of the questions/concerns I have. I want my new system to last some time and offer compatibility and reliability.

Concern #1:
I have no need for a RAID array at the moment, but in the choices of the two boards the Manual for the Asus board actually tells you how to set one up, while the Gigabyte does not. How hard is it really?

Question #1:
Can you have a setup like so; A P-ATA Drive has the main drive (i.e. Has the OS on it) and a single S-ATA drive connected for data/games/database install?

Concern #2:
After reading the associated threads, the components of the Gigabyte seem to be far superior (especially with regards to the raid controller), and the althought I have never had an issue with my current Asus board (CUV4X) I am concerned with the number of issues folks are having with the P4C800-E over the 8KNXP boards. Or am I just reading too much into it?

Question #2:
Is the type of RAM I get really going to be a major issue, as I plan to not do any overclocking in the near future with the system, but may later on? I am considering 1 GB Kit Corsair TWINX1024 3200C2 RAM Kit versus 2 X 512 MB Kingston RAM (exact one not sure) PC3200 ... And note I am in Canada, not the USA. :cry:

System specs for the possible build:
GA-8KNXP or Asus P4C800-E Deluxe
1GB Corsair or Kingston PC3200 RAM
WD 80GB IDE
2 X Seagate Barracuda SATA 7200RPM Drives (RAID) unless I can get away with one drive in a non-RAID setup
HIS Excalibur 9600XT 256MB w/DVI & TV Video Card
SB Audiology 2 ZS
LG-GSA 4082B DVD Burner
LG 52X32X52X CDRW
Thermaltake W0013/14 Silent Pure 480W PSU
ICute 302 Case


Any answers, thoughts or suggestions are welcome!

Thanks in advance.
:)

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Last Post by Paladine
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Concern #1

Some manufacturers include the instructions in the mobo manual, some in an additional manual. Both boards are accompanied by instructions.

It's not hard, most reported problems result from a failure to adequately read instractions, and to load the RAID drivers at the appropriate point in the installation sequence.

Question #1

Yes. You don't need to install RAID drivers at all for a setup like that. The SATA connectors can be used for drives under normal operation. Their RAID function is an optional extra capability.

Concern #2

I would choose Gigabyte products over Asus products every time, but that's simply a personal preference.

Question #2

I would choose GigaByte products over Asus products every time, but that's simply a personal preference. I consider Gigabyte to be higher quality.


System specs/ general comments

What is the system to be used for, might I ask? If you intend to use it for Workstation or server tasks, the PCI-X slots on the 8KNXP might come in handy ;)

If you intend to use it for gaming, the best motherboard to base it on would be the ABit IC7-Max3, and you should also reconsider that 9600XT vid card, which is only a mid-range option rather than a high performance option. For a few dollars more you could get a GeFX5900XT, which is a better performer, and for a few more again you could drop a Radeon 9800 Pro in it!

Votes + Comments
Thanks for the Comments and suggestions
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Hey thanks Catweazle I appreciate the reply and the comments. I would be using the system for Programming / Gaming / Photo editing at about 40%/40%/20% as as a breakdown. I am seriously leaning towards the Gigabtye board, but the FX5900 never really crossed my mind. I will have to look into that.

I don't really want to stray away from Gigabtye or Asus. But thanks for the Abit suggestion, I had looked at that initially.

I basically want to build this thing and leave it be for as long as possible before I have to upgrade again or add anything to it. I have been warned to not use Corsair ram with the Gigabtye board, but to use Kingston HyperX Ram instead. Seems to be more stable.

I always plan for overclocking, although the last 3 systems I have built, I never overclocked, just not enough of a performance boost for me to push those systems. So I still wonder if the GA-8KNXP may be overkill. Maybe I should consider the GA-8iK1100 (rev 2.0) or the ASUS just for the cost difference.

Decisions...decisions.

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Programming and photo editing can be easily handled by a lesser system. It's gaming that you need to prepare for, given the uses you've mentioned.

I'd be giving the ABit a reconsider, in your situation. The only real issue the ABit boards have is a usually crappy Northbridge heatsink/fan. They've seemed to have included a better one on this board, but you could always replace it with something better anyway.

Kingston HyperX is fine RAM! It wasn't clear from your earlier post that you meant this type and not the cheaper Kingston ValueRAM.


And if you look at an FX5900, I'd only be recommending the 5900XT, which is the 'budget' version. It can be obtained for only slightly more cost than the 9600XT, but is a better performer. It is, however, still a mid-range card. For future-proofing, you'd be better to source a cheap 9800 Pro, or spend more money on an ATi X800 series card or NVidia 6800 series card (in their AGP configuration of course). You should see those on shelves soon, and they're much better than the Radeon 9800s and NVidia 5950s which are the current 'top-end' cards.

For games, the vid card is the be-all and end-all of it!

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Just my two (non-specific) cents: I've used both an Asus and a Gigabyte. I had no problems with my Gigabyte, but I love my Asus, and from now on will only by Asus.

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Well Catweazle I am only assuming the ram is HyperX, it maybe value ram, but I will have to see.

As for ABit boards, there is only one place in the whole city here that sells them, and well, it is not the most reputable place in town if you get my meaning, saying that though....I will reconsider you suggestion. Performance at HardForum(s) was rather good for that board.


Dani (a.k.a cscgal) - Ok, you have my curiosity. Why Asus for you? I mean I love my Asus board to, it has been rocking solidly for 4 1/2 years. And I abuse the hell out of it.

:cool:

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Whatever brand of RAM you get, try to ensure you get low latency modules. CL2 is the ideal, but CL2.5 is pretty good as well. Some of the Geil and OC-Z product lines are perhaps even better than Corsair.

Any 'branded' low-latency product line should be OK, really. Almost all of the problems or performance differences only really come into play when you get into serious overclocking.

heh heh.... and I ALWAYS purchase online! Better variety and prices there! :D

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Thanks. Yeah, it is easier online...but in the USA only. In Canada, I have had nothing but issues. By the time I get a product I have lost all the saves with the extra shipping, taxes, etc they throw on.

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