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New to SLI, need MB advice.

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I had my LeadTek 8800GTS 320MB card go out recently. I needed to RMA it and bought an eVGA 8800GT 512MB superclocked edition so I could still game while waiting. I got a email back from newegg saying they don't carry that model anymore and offered me either a 8800GTS 640 card or a refund. I asked the guy if I could exchange for another eVGA 512 SCE that was $10 less and I asked if he could ship without refund to get it quicker and keep the $10 for rushing my order. I waited three days for a respose and finally I got a message saying they would do it, then a funny thing happened, the doorbell rang and it was FedEx with my video card - lol. too funny.

anyway, now I have two identical eVGA 8800GTs I'd like to get an SLI motherboard to hook hook them both up to. Now I have an old MSI P6N Diamond that has been a thorn in my side, but it has SLI and it seems to work well in general and could use it, but I'd like to know if there was a better solution. I like to overclock and I have an E8400 to install with 4GB 4-4-4-12 RAM.

Thanks in advance
-=Mark=-
post #2 of 9
Hi.

Welcome to OCN. *waves*

What is your budget?

Is there a specific reason you do not want to use the motherboard that you have now that works "well in general"?
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post #3 of 9
my boards great if your on a budget. Ive had my core 2 up to 3.8ghz on it. Im going SLI today yay!
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post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syrillian View Post
Hi.

Welcome to OCN. *waves*

What is your budget?
no real budget, right now I have a couple hundred and will have a litte more in about a week and a half.

I just one one that fully supports my E8400 and overclocks well.

Quote:
Is there a specific reason you do not want to use the motherboard that you have now that works "well in general"?
Tons of issues with this board. First I bought it for the buit-in hardware RAID and the built-in X-Fi sound.

The hardware RAID is flakey and won't work on a cold bot without several resets and can 10 minutes to boot up if I don't reset the machine before it startes booting. I even went as far as buying brand new hard drives that were suppose to be compatible according to SiI ad they seem stabe, but still have the cold boot issue.

The sound card finally supports playback in Vista x64, but microphone still doesn't work last I checked.

No BIOS support from MSI, they have dropped the ball badly with this board. They were suppose to release an official E8400 BIOS and only released for the P6N boards and never bothered with this board. It will work, but it is unreliable and since it's been 6 months since the last BIOS update was released, I'm not holding my breath for a new one.

To get any 1333MHz chip to work in the board requires a major overclock and vdroop is soo bad I have to pump a ton of volts into the cpu just to get it stable at stock speeds.

also, there have been lots of people with SLI issues in the past. Not sure if it was a driver issue as I didn't have an SLI setup, so I didn't follow the threads for that.

It has horrible support for memory and a lot of the high speed ones have problems working at all. although my DDR2-1000 do function properly on it.

The OC options are sparse and the Linked (1:1 ratio) doesn't work and it doesn't have any memory dividers at all and you have to play with the OC all the time to find sweet spots at "every step" of your overclocking.

I could go on, but you get the picture - lol.
-=Mark=-
ps. In case you're wondering why I didn't return this thing in the first place is because when I bought it and knew of the sound/hw issues beforehand, I assumed MSI would step up and resolve these issues on their flagship motherboard as they have done good by me in the past. they just seemed to drop the ball on this board.
Edited by MarkJohnson - 5/25/08 at 1:35pm
post #5 of 9
Well.... you certainly have a workable knowldege-base (no condescention from me).

I can say that I had "Fair" experiences with the Evga 680i, and a "Very Good" experience with the 780i in my sig.

I don't run a RAID array at the moment, so I can't comment on that aspect.

Have you taken a look at some 750i mobos?

Asus P5N-DL might be worth a gander.

I am sure that you have considered that if the budget allows. then to reach as far forward in the never-ending cycle of Moore's Law.

FWIW, all I can say for certainty is that I am very pleased with the performance of my Sig rig.

The OC is 24/7 (unless ambient is above 35C), and I have run it to 4.4(-sh ...okay almost... -lol).

Just me

Perhaps seek out one of the following members (in no particular order):
  • SZayat
  • ericeod
  • Robilar
  • DuckieHo
  • Linskingdom

Those Men know their stuff.... guaranteed.

Good luck.

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post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syrillian View Post
:

Perhaps seek out one of the following members (in no particular order):
  • SZayat
  • ericeod
  • Robilar
  • DuckieHo
  • Linskingdom

Those Men know their stuff.... guaranteed.

Good luck.

i agree but you left one person out (Syrillian)
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syrillian View Post
Well.... you certainly have a workable knowldege-base (no condescention from me).

I can say that I had "Fair" experiences with the Evga 680i, and a "Very Good" experience with the 780i in my sig.

I don't run a RAID array at the moment, so I can't comment on that aspect.

Have you taken a look at some 750i mobos?

Asus P5N-DL might be worth a gander.

I am sure that you have considered that if the budget allows. then to reach as far forward in the never-ending cycle of Moore's Law.

FWIW, all I can say for certainty is that I am very pleased with the performance of my Sig rig.

The OC is 24/7 (unless ambient is above 35C), and I have run it to 4.4(-sh ...okay almost... -lol).

Just me

Perhaps seek out one of the following members (in no particular order):
  • SZayat
  • ericeod
  • Robilar
  • DuckieHo
  • Linskingdom

Those Men know their stuff.... guaranteed.

Good luck.

I've had a lot of 750i recommends. Is this chipset based on the 780i or 790i?

The only reason I didn't get the 780i was it was just a 680i with the PCIe 2.0 added on and I was afraid I'd end up with the same issues, or more, that I had with the 680i.

also, is there much difference with the 790i over the 780i other than integrated PCIe 2.0?

sorry for the newbish questions, but I have a 3870X2 and a DFI X38 that has been a huge headache and I've spent a better part of a month researching the heck out of it and my brain just won't hold any more info - lol.

-=Mark=-
post #8 of 9
The 790i has better sli performance as a result of the integrated and updated pci-e 2.0 controller.

It has also shown the highest FSB for quads and is dead stable.

The bad news is its silly expensive and requires DDR3.

I would say if you aren't ready to go DDR3, then the EVGA 780i is a very good solution. Have a look at my guide for the board.
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post #9 of 9
I have the ASUS P5N-D and love it. Its a nice little board and OC's very well I got my E8400 up to 4.1 but took it back down to my 24/7 of 3.8 until my new HDT-S1823 comes in a few days. Also if you check out reviews on it some people say there is a problem with video artifacts which turns out to be false cuz I haven't seen anything yet and I doubt I got an uber board I think they just got bad ones but if that were the case an RMA would fix it anyways. So yea, I highly recommend this board and I think that you will love it plus its <150$. If you absolutely need to buy a 200-300$ board then go with a maximus formula or something but I dont think you will need that unless your going Tri-SLI. This way you can spend the rest on a uber HSF like the S1823 or a T.R.U.E or something like that...

Also wanted to note that the RAID aspect works great as I have mine in striping and havent had any problems at all. If you need to ask me anything PM or post here ill check back later...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJohnson View Post
I've had a lot of 750i recommends. Is this chipset based on the 780i or 790i?
Also if your reading other posts someone said something about the P5N-E which is based on 650i while mine is 750i. I believe the difference is the PCI-E 2.0 slots but I forget and dont feel like looking it up right now..lol. But that PCI-E 2.0 I think is very nice as it pretty much doubles the bandwidth of the GPU.
Edited by mjones1052 - 5/26/08 at 12:09pm
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