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1155 or 2011 opinions wanted
Melbourne, Victoria
6965 posts
About 4 years ago I went and bought myself a shiny new i7 920 w/mobo - everything was integrated so didn't need much more. The P6T had heaps of SATA ports, plus firewire and eSATA - it's done the job.

But over time it's had troubles.
First the onboard audio went. So rather than spending 6 weeks without a motherboard on warranty, I just bought an X-Fi.
Then the onboard LAN went. So I just bought an Intel Gbit NIC for the same reason.
A few weeks ago one my sticks of RAM died and was causing BSODs, and the RAM dropping out, but I can't find the receipt, and it's CPL, so I just bought another quad-channel kit.

But it's still having issues - it's still throwing BSODs, and I don't have the time or inclination to fix it. So, I want some opinions.

Some things to consider:
1. I don't want to spend a fortune.
2. Multi-threaded performance is important, so it will be an i7 regardless, not an i5.
2a. VM/VT-d performance is more important than overclocking. In fact, I don't overclock at all, period.
3. Beast-like performance is not terribly important. Quad-channel memory bandwidth isn't going to make that much difference.
4. I currently have 4xSSDs, 1xSATA HDD, 1xSATA BDROM, 1x SATA bay. ie, the board needs at least 8 SATA ports.
5. Quantity of RAM is more important than performance of RAM. I have a 16GB kit I'll use, but I'm not convinced I won't eventually want to go to 32GB.
6. 6 cores would be nice, but I don't really want to spend $650 on the CPU. Or >350 on a mobo.
7. Nice to have but not essential: Onboard eSATA that has a port-multiplier.

They're probably the keynotes I can think of. Point 5 is probably the biggest kicker in the 1155 vs 2011 decision.

Kinds of things I do: Compile lots of code. Heavy disk I/O.

So, three discussion points:
- Cases for and against an i7 2700K, i7 3770 (1155), and i7 3820 (2011).
- What motherboards would people recommend that is going to meet my requirements?
- Cost/benefit analysis of both options.

Given that this is a "sigh, this is money I really don't want to have to spend" problem, I'd rather keep it budget-like.

Any help with this decision?
11:42am 01/06/12 Permalink
11:42am 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2882 posts
1155, it suppots i3-i7, is fast as a 2011, it is cheap as it has been around a little while now,

plus side is it could be easily put into a different case in a few years for an insta media PC

something like this maybe? http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=10&id2=177&bid=2&sid=89352

with this http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=10&id2=13&bid=2&sid=92180
11:48am 01/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6966 posts
I'm mostly looking at full-ATX boards, so I don't really see that as likely.

Also, I'll be grabbing a new case when I buy this new mobo/cpu combo. Something with nice cable management would be nice. Antec 1100 maybe?
11:58am 01/06/12 Permalink
2637 posts
I had the same mobo and it up and died about 6 months ago. I naturally thought I'd just get a replacement since my i7 950 CPU was still an ass kicker when it comes to performance but the only one I could see locally was one at CA for $500, everywhere else didn't even have listings of 1366 mobos let alone stock. You can still buy socket A motherboards ffs.

Ended up buying a i5 2500, mobo and ram for $300.

It's for this reason I'm personally steering clear of the 2011 chipset. I don't want to have my mobo die in 2 years and have to fork out $500 for a replacement or get stuck with no options at all when it will cost me less to simply buy a new PC based on the more economical chipset.
12:01pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2883 posts
lan li cases,
12:02pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
3537 posts
I made the decision to go 1366 with a new build around the time 1155 first came out. Went with it mainly because of running tripple channel ram, little did I know at that stage Intel discontinued the socket product line so quickly. Fast forward 1 1/2 years, motherboard s**** itself and it's a pain in the ass source a replacement, needed something quickly and the few new 1366 boards still being stocked are incredibly expensive. Had I gone socket 1155, i would have been able to pick up a replacement quite easily and on top of that, had a much larger range of boards to choose from.

In the end, I decided to ditch 1366 and do a fresh Ivy Bridge build. Selling the 1366 cpu and ram on ebay, put the motherboard in for warranty replacement then ebaying that too. Not worth the hassle. Hard to say if 2011 will be another 1366 with a short life span.
12:04pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6967 posts
Yeah. I too expected 1366 to be longer-lived, so bought a low-end processor thinking that in time, maybe a 980 would end up being the same price I paid for my 920. Never happened.
I expect 2011 will be much the same since it's already due to be superceded.
12:17pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2761 posts
fractal design cases are s*** hot
1155 is fine + 2700k (if you think you need an i7 - I use 2500k i5 and it is fine)
12:26pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2483 posts
I'd rather keep it budget-like.
You answered your own question there, S1155.

I expect 2011 will be much the same since it's already due to be superceded.
12:31pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6968 posts
step, Haswell uses LGA1150 (Socket H3).

last edited by Raven at 13:19:31 01/Jun/12
01:17pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2484 posts
step, Haswell uses LGA1150 (Socket H3).
Thanks. Read up on it and was surprised their roadmap has it come out mid next year. S1366 lasted longer than this...

last edited by step at 14:34:34 01/Jun/12
02:32pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
981 posts
what you're really asking us to discuss is to be a tightass, or NOT to be a tightass. Intel has provided the two different products to sit in two different market segments. The first (1155) is mid range home computing/business/gaming, the second (2011) is high end gaming/enthusiast/professional segment.

They're chalk and cheese in comparisons, you really only need to look at what your budget is now, and if you feel like ponying up the cash to go the better machine or not. We can all have our opinions till the cows come home, but if everyone said you should get nothing but the i7-3960X, would you get it? or would you get what you can afford comfortably inside your budget?

You know what you need, and you obviously know the benefits each different socket set would give you (i.e. more ram, higher core counts etc) just pick the one that best suits your budget.

Not to sound like an a****** or anything, I'm just sayin'.....

I personally suggest to look at how much you're willing to spend, and how long (in years) you expect that expenditure to get you before you have to upgrade? Obviously warranty is only going to be 3 years maximum on most components, but if it DOES last longer, what sort of duty cycle would you expect for your money. Then you can decide whether to go extreme performance for further longevity, vs cheaper for upgrading sooner.

Personally, based on what you're looking for, I'd go i7-3770, and upgrade again just as the warranty of that machine expires in 3 years time. Cause if you don't need 32GB RAM right now, save the extra money, and spend it in 3 years time when 32GB would be much more mainstream/cheaper on the next gen technology.

04:48pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
6812 posts
Get the 1155, and then purchase yourself a i7 3700 while laughing in the face of games like Metro 2033 or Crysis.
04:50pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2884 posts
fractal design cases are s*** hot
1155 is fine + 2700k (if you think you need an i7 - I use 2500k i5 and it is fine)

pretty much what I have now (the i5 that is) the only downside with the fractal is (well with the XL that i have at least) it is f*****g heavy, so much so it has dented my filing cabinet,

my old lan li is still a carry under the arm with ease
07:32pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6973 posts
what you're really asking us to discuss is to be a tightass, or NOT to be a tightass. Intel has provided the two different products to sit in two different market segments. The first (1155) is mid range home computing/business/gaming, the second (2011) is high end gaming/enthusiast/professional segment.

Well no, the other part was recommendations on motherboards, which noones even touched on. There's so many 1155 options out there, but I haven't yet figured out if the ones that meet my needs wouldn't just push me in to the 2011 bracket.

To be clear, there's nothing wrong with the performance of my i7-920... except for a BSOD two or three times a day. It runs ant and javac plenty fast, and that's really what matters ;) That's a four year mobo/cpu combo which, sure, I've upgraded from 3x2GB to 6x2GB to 3x4GB and then replaced 3xGB again, and upgraded from a 9600GT to a 460GTX, and have since put 4 SSDs in to in place of a Seagate ES...
But yeah.

Ultimately what I look at in the 3770 is the lower TDP than the 2x00s, and the native VT-d support not present in the 'K' models.

The only thing I'd maybe like to do is have 32GB so I can have 16GB as a ramdisk and compile all my class/binary files to RAM and shadow it to an SSD.

Notice how high on the list of priorities my framerate in Tribes Ascend and Diablo 3 is? :)
09:30pm 01/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
5543 posts
Have you thought about getting a cheap dual 2011 server board in it adding an entry level cpu to start and the get some mid range 8cores later on
11:20am 02/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
5648 posts
Entry level dual cpu mobo 250 dollars,
two entry level cpu's 300 dollars, total cost, 850 dollars.
and the native VT-d support not present in the 'K' models.
What are you even doing which will use this?

In the meantime, the following is a brief questionnaire to help you decide whether or not to utilize DDA for a given VM:

Is your VM generating a substantial amounts of I/O (e.g. > 20 MBps)
Is your VM dependent on I/O and has strict QoS requirements
Is your host heavily utilized (e.g. >50%)
Is your VM latency sensitive (in the order of 1-2 micro Seconds)
If you Answer YES to two or more of these questions


Will your VM NOT need to Migrate?
Will your NIC not be used by other VMs
If you answer yes to both of those, then VT-D will be helpful. Else, it will not.

Lets strike out your utilization, because, well, you're buying a brand new giant machine which will probably not see 50% utilization in a VM, else you've probably underspecced it, and the rest appeals to the previous question of what you are doing with it. To be fair i'm kind of biased because based on your other system performances, i expect that you're instantly not in need of using DDA, unless you're buying a second nic just to enable DDA, and run normal OS on one NIC and the VM on the other.
11:28am 02/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2886 posts
hey raven, any reason youre not using a pci ssd?
12:09pm 02/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6974 posts
Well the bad news, Skythra, is that you posted that just as I jumped in the car after getting fed up with yet another BSOD to go buy parts. And yea, VT-d maybe isn't essential for me, but frankly, I don't overclock; non-Ks give a stepping more on each core for turbo... I'm not terribly fussed.

Essentially from time to time I do a lot of compiling wither within a VM, or directly to a drive mapped to inside a VM.
On the whole the price thing makes it questionable why I'd have gone 1155, but oh well.

The motherboard was the pain in the ass bit to decide on, so in the end I went with a Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H-WB. It falls short on the desirable number of SATA ports, BUT, I can get by for now and if it becomes absolutely necessary, buy another card later.

HerbalLizard, I hadn't considered that at all for one second. As in, the idea hadn't even crossed my mind. But, it likely would have been more expensive again. This was one of those "sigh, I'd like to do this spending as close to $0 as possible" job.

copius, I don't use PCI SSDs because I'm not rich.

As it turns out, I can claim the old motherboard on my credit cards extended warranty, as it's out of warranty, which means they'll probably just refund the amount I paid ($359).
07:09pm 02/06/12 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
2888 posts
raven, even if this rig is slower, pretty sure not having to restart 4 times a day will mean more work will get done

I only asked regarding the drive as the PCI's seem so much faster than a standard ssd
07:14pm 02/06/12 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
6975 posts
Yeah, they typically always are from what I've seen more. But they're also more expensive. It took a bargain for me to jump on the 240GB SanDisk Extreme SSD.
07:20pm 02/06/12 Permalink
1903 posts
fractal design R3 is lush.
10:24pm 02/06/12 Permalink
10:24pm 02/06/12 Permalink
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