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Thread: Help with motherboard choice

  1. #1
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    Help with motherboard choice

    Hi,

    I tried posting this in the Hardware / Laptop forum but it hasn't generated any responses yet. So, I figured I woud try here too.

    I am putting together a Mythbuntu system and am looking for a MB with these specs but have been unable to find one. Any advice would be appreciated:

    Form: MicroATX
    CPU Socket: AMD3
    HDMI output: 1 (or more)
    PCI Express x1: 1 (or more)
    Integrated Graphics: something that supports VDPAU (this seems to be the tricky one, I can find many MBs that have ATI for integrated graphics, but not very many with NVIDEA VDPAU support)
    Integrated Audio: Yes

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    Does it HAVE to be an AMD CPU? An ION-based motherboard may work for you w/r/t all the other factors, except that it would use the intel Atom CPU.

  3. #3
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    Technically I suppose it doesn't have to be AMD, but I wanted something with enough power to be able to do Transcoding and commercial detection for two streams as well as be able to display 1080p over HDMI. I chose AMD over Intel just because I have always had good experiences with AMD and it has always seemed to me that you get more for your $ than with intel.

    I had thought a little about ION based combos and it seemed to me like it probably wouldn't have enough power for what I was wanting to do with it.

    Thanks,
    Zac

  4. #4
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    There is a fairly new motherboard from Zotac that uses a Celeron processor (instead of the Atom) and the ion graphics processor that might be interesting.

    http://www.zotacusa.com/zotac-ionitx...therboard.html

    Though I don't have any experience with it.

  5. #5
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    AFAIK there are no microATX AM3 motherboards with nvidia 8100/8200/8300 chispets. All the 'AM3' 8100-8300 chipsets I've seen are not 'true' AM3 anyway, they all use DDR2 (not DDR3, which 'real' AM3 uses)

    IMO they arent worth it anyway, I have not been impressed with the newer nvidia chipsets. How the mighty have fallen....

    A 880 + SB850 (not SB7XX, lots of the cheaper 880s have a SB7XX southbridge) would be your best bet for microATX. Sure, its got the onboard ATI video, but you can disable that and use a nice, cheap VDPAU capable GT210/GT220.

    890GX would work as well, but then you are paying more for the better onbaord video, which you wont use.

    If you decide to go full ATX, AMD 870 chipset boards + GT210/GT220 (again!) are what to look for.

  6. #6
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    cascade9 brought up a great idea with the 880 chipset boards.

    I can't state this enough but onboard graphics are hardly ever a good choice if you need it for HD video and transcoding. They use up precious onboard RAM and create more heat because the extra communication being done.

    Realistically just get the cheapest AM3 board you can find, and then buy a Nvidia graphics card. In the end it might be the smae price as a higher end MB. People think they need all the extra features of a high end board but most never even use the options.

    here is a great option for a MB
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813130295
    And here is one of the newer 430 chipsets for graphic cards (newer version of VDPAU)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814162067
    Last night I lay in bed looking up at the stars in the sky and I thought to myself, where the heck is the ceiling.

  7. #7
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    Quote Originally Posted by LowSky View Post
    cascade9 brought up a great idea with the 880 chipset boards.

    I can't state this enough but onboard graphics are hardly ever a good choice if you need it for HD video and transcoding. They use up precious onboard RAM and create more heat because the extra communication being done.
    Well I beg to differ. A revo makes a fantastic frontend. True you need 2G of RAM so you can allocate 512M to the video, but that's not a steep requirement.

  8. #8
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    What are your thoughts on this MB: MSI ATX MB ?

    This appears to have everything that I was looking for, except in ATX form instead of microATX.

    Thanks,
    Zac

  9. #9
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    Quote Originally Posted by LowSky View Post
    I can't state this enough but onboard graphics are hardly ever a good choice if you need it for HD video and transcoding. They use up precious onboard RAM and create more heat because the extra communication being done.
    OK, I do find this sort of funny..you've said "get the cheapest AM3 board you can find" ubt thats a long way from the cheapest

    You sort of have a point about the shared RAM, but its possible to find some onboard video using 'sideport' RAM (ie, RAM mounted onto the motherboard). As far as heat goes, using onboard wont make any extra 'communication' vs a PCIe card, and wont create any more heat from that. Any extra heat would be due to more powerful video chips (more MHz, more processors = more heat)

    Quote Originally Posted by HarrisonFan View Post
    What are your thoughts on this MB: MSI ATX MB ?

    This appears to have everything that I was looking for, except in ATX form instead of microATX.

    Thanks,
    Zac
    Personally....I wouldnt touch it with a bargepole.

    I'll admit my bias, MSI has burnt me too many times. I'm also not a fan of the newer nVidia chipset, though I havent burnt myself with them I've help a few people out with them and its never been nice (worst case- a fairly 'top end' asus board that was returned 3 times, and still doesnt work....).

    I do find it interesting that MSI has given the motherbaord that LowSky posted a 3 year warranty, and that board only 1 year...which says a lot about the expected lifespan IMO.

    I wouldnt get to hung up with onbaord video, for a similar level card to what you get with onbaord 8100-8300 chipsets the power useage would only be a tiny bit higher. With a newer, smaller process and low power card (GT210, GT220, GT430) the power use from a standalone video card might be lower than with onboard video.

  10. #10
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    Re: Help with motherboard choice

    Personally....I wouldnt touch it with a bargepole.
    oh man, that's too bad.

    I pulled the trigger on that MB last night while there was still a rebate for the board. I guess I should have posted it here earlier. Now I feel foolish.

    Well, live and learn. I guess I will have to hope that I don't have any problems with it and everything works great.

    I am planning to pair this with an AMD Triple core 3.1 Ghz. I believe this should have more than enough power for what I am looking for.

    Here's hoping that my build turns out alright!

    Oh, and I looked at the MSI website and it appears that all their Motherboards are covered by a 3 year warranty. So, maybe Newegg is wrong?

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