Originally Posted by gtz
Reading this thread makes me want to buy a 960T for a build for my brother. He wants a fairly modern computer and I was going to do a 2500K and a P67 combo.
The 2500K from newegg is 209.99 and a refurbished Asus P8P67 for 71.49 from geeks.com for a total of 281.18.
The 960T with its high unlock rate looks very attractive costing 109.99 at newegg after promo code and a refurbished Asus Crosshair III 790FX geeks.com cost 87.99 for a total of 197.98. Or if I want to go all out with one of the best AMD AM3+ the Crosshair V for 149.99 (refurb) at geeks making it 259.98.
A lot to think about.
Or get the ASUS M4A88T-V EVO for 55.19 making the total 165.18. If the ASUS 880G M4A88T-V EVO is anuthing like my old Asus 785G M4A785TD-V EVO (which both boards look identical) it should clock the 960T to 4.0 no problem. I got my old 1055T X6 to 4.0 on my old 785 chipset with a little tweaking.
I would go for the ASUS Crosshair V 990FX (AM3+) board, as I sold my Crosshair IV to a friend and picked up the V during Newegg's Black Friday sales for $50 off plus a $30 mail-in rebate. I am very happy with it, as it works great with the 1100T, has an excellent layout IMO (RAM is well-placed as are the PCI-e x16 slots). I have been running mostly ASUS boards ever since I did my first build (bought an AMD FX51 the day it was released and paired it with an X800XTPE) and have yet to have any arrive DOA or even have to RMA a board; maybe I'm lucky, but I think that qualifies as "very high quality".
When I did my 1100T build, I really considered going with Intel due to Sandy Bridge, but the increased price wasn't worth the performance difference to me (or the fact that Intel changes socket every new chip). I am pleased with knowing that having an AM3+ board means I can upgrade to Bulldozer or Piledriver when that mess gets sorted out, while had I gone Intel I would have to buy an all-new CPU AND MoBo, which I'd rather not.
I have built a number of gaming PC's over the years, but I am fortunate to have a friend who is far more knowledgeable on the subject than myself, so while I could probably go at it alone, he has saved me countless hours of reading reviews and forums and the like (especially regarding water cooling... I was so afraid of it at first, but he stepped up and helped me make the plunge, and now I'm hooked!).
Regarding the 960T: after seeing it in action in my girlfriend's (prefab) PC, I am impressed... Enough so that I am considering it for a Home Theater PC build in the near future... Worst case, I get a great quad-core Phenom II.... Best case, I get an overclocked six-core Phenom for $100... Win-Win.
When it comes to "budget" gaming PC's, AMD has got the market IMO... Especially because, even though the prices may be "budget", the performance is most definitely NOT!