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Thread: New motherboard and gfx card, budget approx £300 or a bit over

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    37 times in 32 posts

    New motherboard and gfx card, budget approx £300 or a bit over

    Hi Guys,
    As I suspect my motherboard has just toasted my RAM, I am looking (reluctantly) to replace it (the motherboard). In which case, I might as well switch my AGP Radeon X800XT for something in PCI-E at the same time.

    I've been looking at the Sapphire Pure Innovation motherboard, which seems to have been getting reasonable reviews. I don't want an SLI board as I prefer ATI graphics cards over nVidia (so no SLI setup for me), but that is not to say I have anything against nVidia chipsets (their nForce2 was the dogs danglies). Any thoughts on my choice of motherboard? It looks like this will cost around £120.

    In terms of graphics card, I'd love an X1800 but would struggle to keep to my budget, although I could stretch to nearer £400. I would like a card that has dual DVI and is the equal or better to my X800XT that I have already. I guess here we are looking at around about £180, unless I can justify more to myself.. In terms of gaming, I'm not using my PC for games much now, but do still want the card to cope with the likes of HL2 or Quake 4, although I am mainly interested in driving games - Toca, Colin McRae, etc.

    I'm also hoping to sneak in an Antec Sonata II case, which I can find for about £40 with no PSU at Overclock, since my OCZ PSU is good for the forseeable future. The other components will be reused from my rig in my sig.

    Any thoughts gratefully received.


  2. #2
    Senior Member kasavien's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    St. Albans
    104 times in 49 posts
    Theres not much point getting the saphire pure board unless you can say absolutley that you will use all or most of its features instead i would recommend something like this:

    Asus A8R-MVP S939 ATI 200 Crossfire DDR400 SATAII Raid USB2 GbE Lan 6Ch Audio linky

    and for a graphics card this should be ok:
    256Mb Sapphire PCI-E ATI X1800XL GDDR3 256Bit Dual DVI AViVo linky

    for motherboard and graphics thats £312 (if you don't qualify yet for free P&P its £10 extra for carriage) and it'll certainly perform better than an X800XT.

    If you can afford a bit more for the graphics card get the X1800XT, i don't think the make matters really as they are all pretty much the reference design the only difference will probably be in the bundle but bear in mind you'll spend your £300 budget on the graphics card alone. Having said that the X1800XT will probably be overkill for the type of games you like to play.

    Hope this helps


  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    37 times in 32 posts
    Ta for the reply. The sort of features I would use at some point are SATA II, although my current drives are SATA I, but I still have my eye on a pair of those new Raptors at some point . Firewire is an essential, as I have an Ipod and an external hard drive I use for backups. I use a wireless network, so the gigabit ethernet is a nice to have but most likely will end up disabled in the bios. The sound should be an improvement on my existing audio, although I've been quite happy to make do with on-board sound for a while. I have thought about going crossfire at some point, but I don't see the need for a while.

    I would certainly like to have a stab at getting more out of my CPU with a bit of overclocking - I had it up to about 2.5GHz before on my current board, so I'd like to see if I can improve on that.

    However, I didn't realise that the Asus board supports SATA II, so that could be tempting. It would meet all my requirements and leave the Crossfire option open in the future. However, as I have an aversion to buying from Scan after some of my friends and colleagues had bad experiences there, I hadn't seen that board elsewhere. And don't even suggest OcUK!

    Hmm, I'll have a ponder though, as that Asus board is cheaper than the Sapphire one and Asus have a proven track record of supporting their boards - Sapphire seem to be getting a bit of a caning on their own forums at the moment.


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