Joined on 08/02/09
Very nice splurge
Pros: Very fast. Runs pretty cool. Haven't really challenged it yet. I can't hear this coil whine people are talking about. I can't even hear the fans. I have a 600W power supply and it isn't having any issues. I usually never buy something this nice, as I'm usually content with the mid-level stuff. I would've probably bought the GTX-960 had it been out yet, but I like knowing my video board won't be outdated for many years to come. And I don't know if anyone has noticed but GPU's are slowly increasing in price. Even the cheap ones.
Another great Asus MB, but....
Pros: Strong quality. Decent documentation. Nice software toolset included. Bios is pretty nice, has an autotune feature, that gets your system setup with no fuss. Good price for a Z-97 board.
Cons: Not a full size ATX board. You better be careful plugging in that 24 pin mini-fit jr. or it'll ruin your day.
Pros: Excellent price/performance for an Intel cpu. Low power, runs under 40 degrees with stock cooler. No pins. Before installing video board had the haswell graphics interface at 1080p and it ran windows 8.1 just as fast as the 4830 I had installed previously. Benchmarked 32 bit single core and multi core performance is very high. Just a tad slower than the 300+ dollar i7's. Noticeably faster than my old setup. Old : Phenom II X3 710 ASUS M4A785TD-V EVO Team Vulcan DDR3-1600 2x4GB Sapphire 4830 Rosewill 600W Max 80 plus New: Core i5-4690 Asus Z97-P Team Vulcan DDR3-1600 2x4GB EVGA GTX-970 SSC Rosewill 600W Max 80 plus
Cons: Expensive (but superior) compared to AMD processors.
Overall Review: I was going to buy that X4 860 from somewhere else when they had it for 69.99, but they raised the price before I could actually decide what video bd I wanted to go with it. I'm kinda glad they did, as I decided to go bigger with this processor. At 100 dollars for the 860, this chip is actually a better deal. It uses significantly less power to move significantly more bits. Newegg is always my first choice for tech products.
Pros: Lots of space. Solid construction. Motherboard tray - you can take off both side covers. ATX board fits nice. Has more drive bays than anyone could possibly need. Two big fans. Cool LED's. The plastic drive latches work pretty well. Runs very quiet with my setup. Very black powder coat. Should make a good case to paint designs on. Comes with extra screws - well I hope they're extra. Even comes with little snap-in feet.
Cons: LED's not labeled which is plus and which is minus. Wire colors for LEDs were green and white. I guessed correctly. The green is the anode the white is the cathode. Needs one more inch between 3.5" drive bays and motherboard. Power button is a bit awkward, the front USB connectors are inside the door. Not one scrap of documentation which was a bummer as I was looking forward to chuckling over the broken english. The front USB connectors weren't labeled as such and could easily be plugged into the wrong motherboard spot - no, I didn't, but you might, so pay attention.
Overall Review: For fifty bucks with free shipping, I don't know how anyone makes any money on this case. Maybe the owner of Newegg got them thrown in as part of a dowry or something. Remember, if you have any questions, the internet has a million videos showing you how to put all this kind of stuff together, so have no fear.
Pros: Pretty clear documentation. Works - always a plus. I didn't have to setup anything. I built it up with a single sata dvd, a single sata hdd, 3GB of DDR3-1333, X3-710, and an HD4830. All I did was put the windows disk in, turn the power on the 600w power supply i bought and everything worked. I haven't touched the BIOS yet and the computer (except for audio) is working perfectly. I got this board over the MSI and Gigabyte uATX 785 boards because its a little more expandible. A lot of empty space on the board gives things a little roomier feeling.
Cons: The manual tells you to plug in the HD audio. Audio doesn't work yet. I'm going to try to switch to the '97 audio and see if that works. Doesn't output video from northbridge if the pci express card is already installed. This confuses old school guys like myself who are used to having to setup everything. The DRAM is too close to the HDD cage, but I guess all motherboards are laid out like that.
Overall Review: For simple systems, non overclocked cpu, 1x dvd, 1x hdd, 1x pci express, windows xp home, this board is as close to perfect as it gets. Turn it on and it just does everything for you. The manual shows that the BIOS can do all kinds of stuff but I like keeping things simple so I haven't tried any of this stuff. Hopefully it will work as long as my old Asus board has - 4 years and still working great.