Is it worth it? Entry level HEDT vs. hiend.

Discussion in 'Motherboards' started by M76, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Looking at the prices the lowest priced x299 board costs about half than the hi-end ones.

    Is that price gap really justified? What is the difference between them in practice, apart from the extra features that one doesn't really need.

    Has anyone done any testing like this, comparing performance and overclocking using the same silicon (preferably more than one chip) to compare what are you actually getting for your money? More power phases yes, that looks good on paper, but how much does it matter in actual clocks?

    I'm really curious.
     
  2. Denpepe

    Denpepe Gawd

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    The realy cheap boards tend to only support the 2 kaby lake CPU's and everything that comes with that. Well that's what I noticed when I was shopping for mine, there will ofc be different ones that support all of it, just make sure it supports what you want, the realy high end ones are mostly only worth it if you require specific features that the others don't have.
     
  3. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    The really cheap boards are cheap for a reason. You want to aim at $250-350.

    Ultra-High-end motherboards ($400 or more) are typically the same quality as anything over $300. The phases are almost identical at that point, and there's usually high-end audio and SLI on these motherboards.

    The only reason you go more expensive is for little things: screens with post codes, front-panel plug-in headers, wifi, and sometimes one more m.2 slot, "special" audio chipsets that don't actually matter, easier bios flashing (no CPU required), 10Gbps lan. That's about it.

    In the end of the day, they get the same firmware support. No high-end motherboard got a Spectre firmware update that didn't eventually get released on the whole range.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
  4. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Well I'm looking at the Asrock Extreme4, which is exactly 250, And it seems to have everything I'd ever need. SLI, 11 phase power, dual m2 slots. 8 sata. Why would I want anything more expensive that's the question.

    On the opposite end of the scale there is the ASUS ROG RAMPAGE VI EXTREME for 800. But of course I'd never pay that much for a board, even if I look at 400 boards I doubt there would be any noticeable difference in use.
     
  5. Brian_B

    Brian_B [H]ard|Gawd

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    Depends on what you are using the computer for.

    Gaming - probably not.

    Heavily multithreaded workloads - probably. Often the very high core count CPUs only work on the HEDT sockets.

    Overclocking - maybe if your trying to set world records you might see a slight difference in the very upper end, but I think your suspicion is correct, high end and HEDT platforms are going to be very similar with respect to CPU overclocking.
     
  6. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?

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    I had a Gigabyte Aorus Gaming 3 (it's actually FS in the forums). For a $250 "budget" board, it did everything I wanted it to do just with less LEDs and no onboard wireless compared to the higher end boards. OC'd my 7820X to 4.5Ghz all cores without issue.

    I never felt like I missed out by not spending $400 instead of $250.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  7. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    You misread the question. He wants to know x299 low-end vs x299 high-end. He doesn't care about z-series.
     
  8. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    You've already read my take, and you've already done the research.

    AsRock tends to build some high-quality HEDT motherboards, so I'd jump on it!
     
  9. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Thanks for your input, but no, I'm not looking to buy, at least not right now. I'm just curios if anyone made this sort of comparison before. Because one person buys the asrock the other the asus, and then it's just the word of one person against another there is no direct comparison available afaik. And any differences they achieve in oc might just be down to silicon lottery.
     
  10. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    Long story short, you get what you pay for. A more expensive motherboard does offer benefits over a cheaper one. Not all of which come down to bullet points on a list of features. More expensive motherboards can overclock better, but frankly most people won't push their CPU's far enough or get into LN2 cooling to realize that potential. Another benefit is potential longevity, which a more expensive motherboard theoretically has over a less expensive one. Components rated for a longer MTBF should last longer than cheaper motherboards with lesser components. It's one of those things that doesn't always matter depending on how hard a system gets used or given the relatively short service life of a personal computer compared to things like appliances or automobiles.

    I'm writing a far more complex and specific answer, but the above is more or less the short version.
     
  11. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yeah, but that's what I mean, "should" "theoretically" "potential", everyone assumes they're better but has anyone done an actual head to head comparison? Sure it's hard to measure longevity, but it should be fairly easy to compare overclocking ability, and out of the box performance.
     
  12. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    Uh.....yes. It's kind of what I do for a living. This isn't a mystery either. The answers to these questions come down to a basic understanding of electronics.

    At stock speeds, performance is going to be the same on all motherboards. Everything that impacts system performance is external to the motherboard. It's all in the RAM, CPU or installed devices. Longevity isn't theoretical. A motherboard with 10k rated capacitors will outlast one that doesn't. The issue is that the longevity of even cheap motherboards is long enough to ensure most motherboards will last longer than the useful lifespan of a given system configuration. This is why you can have cheap ass motherboards run for 10 years. MTBF, or mean time between failures is a product of how long a component is run and under what conditions it operates in. Components have a specific temperature and humidity range they operate in. Go outside their optimal temperature range and you'll shorten the life of the component. It's not conjecture. It's how electronics work.

    As for overclocking, it's been tested. On air or water cooling, you can generaly hit the same speeds on most motherboards. This isn't always the case. The GIGABYTE AX370 Gaming 5 runs it's base clock a bit under spec, It lacks an external clock generator and doesn't have the same flexibility as the AX370 Gaming K7. If you've got a CPU that can't quite do 4.1GHz, but can do 4.0GHz, you won't get 4.0GHz on it. It's about 3.93GHz if I recall correctly. The AX370 Gaming K7 on the other hand can get you over 4.0GHz because it offers more adjustment range on the base clock. This is an example of the higher end board physically being far more capable than the cheaper motherboard. This is literally what you pay for with the AX370 Gaming K7 over the Gaming 5.

    Overclocking is mostly a function of the CPU silicon lottery and cooling systems. If you aren't pushing most CPU's past what they can do on water cooling or high end air cooling, then you don't need to go with a super high end motherboard. However, if you are seriously pushing your CPU. those motherboards with the extra capability can get you a little more speed if you've got the time to sift through their many settings. If your going to LN2 cooling, then motherboards that are designed to use such cooling are more capable than ones which aren't. They offer tools and features which make extreme overclocking easier.

    If you go super cheap, you'll find the lower end motherboards to be slightly less capable on the overclocking front. However, you might not ever hit the edge of what the board can do depending on your CPU. Some CPU's can't be helped by a high end motherboard while others can go slightly further on one. I've been working with hardware for over 20 years. In that time I've found that you get what you pay for. There are points of diminishing returns of course, and you do get more than you used to for a lot less money than in the old days.

    Nice motherboards aren't just about better overclocking either. They are also about more features, tools, functionality, and aesthetic qualities.
     
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  13. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    The MTBF on cheap motherboards is already plenty. Otherwise, OEMs with warranties to support wouldn't use them.

    More expensive boards add high-quality capacitors to fill a check-box. Then they add twice as many devices to the board, erasing most of those reliability gains.

    The more complexity you have on a board, the more likely it will break.
     
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  14. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    I already said as much. That said, cheaper motherboards have poorer VRM and chipset cooling. They may not last as long in adverse conditions.

    Yes, the higher end capacitors do check off a box on a feature list. However, I've been working with motherboards for a couple of decades now. Out of hundreds of motherboards I've worked with, I've seen probably fewer than 10 integrated device failures. Some of which were on cheaper boards that were minimalistic at best.

    People say this, and while there is a certain amount of truth to it I've rarely seen this happen. I've seen far more cheap boards fail than high end ones.
     
  15. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?

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    At this point though, the discussion isn't about the $40 ECS bargain basement board. We're talking about a $250 HEDT "budget" board. A lot of the difference is LEDs, Wifi, Extra m.2 slots (more than 2), etc.

    Here's a comparison between two GB boards. One is a $250 budget board and the other is a $400 board. Doesn't seem like there's $150 worth of difference.
     
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  16. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    The difference between these two motherboards, and why the X299 Gaming 7 is $150 more than the X299 Gaming 3 is pretty obvious when you actually look at the product pages for each. The comparison you linked doesn't show case that much of a difference, and is pretty close to being worthless.

    The X299 Gaming 7 has a better audio implementation and a second NIC.You are also talking about an additional M.2 slot, M.2 heat sinks, steel reinforcement around all the PCIe slots, more onboard controls, additional USB ports and better MOSFET cooling. You get more RGB LED lighting and you also get USB DAC UP 2 ports. These feature isolated power circuitry for better audio quality through a USB DAC. The audio jacks are gold plated on the Gaming 7 and they use plastic color coded rings on the Gaming 3. Lastly, the Gaming 7 has built in WiFi and the Gaming 3 doesn't.

    There is easily $150 worth of difference in hardware between those two motherboards. If you bought a X299 Gaming 3 and wanted to replace the audio and NIC, you'd be over the $100 mark between the two of them pretty easily. Now, whether or not the cost difference is worth while depends on what your doing with the system and your tastes. But keep in mind, extra fan headers, ASICS to control them, additional thermal sensors and other things found on more expensive motherboards all cost money. Believe it or not, the costs add up faster than you'd think. There isn't as much profit margin in these products as you might think.
     
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  17. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    You don't have to get angry at me, I'm not saying it's conjecture, Just because I run a $250 board doesn't mean I'll be running it outside the specified temperature margins, so out of specs operation is not really relevant. I think a lot of this comes from 20 years ago, when cheaper motherboards really had garbage components on them that weren't up for the task even under normal circumstances. Nowadays as I see it even cheapish MBs have decent components on them. It seems to me that the real money saving is done by reducing or eliminating QA. I had no MB failure in any board mfged in the past 10 years, unless it was DOA. And I don't just mean the MBs I owned in that time which is no more than a dozen. But at my company either where many run 24/7 under heavy workload. Plenty of GPUs died, MBs: one, which was really low end. Sure my sample size of maybe 100 computers can't be called significant, but I can't help but make assumptions based on that experience.

    Well I'd still like to see actual tests in this regard. I don't think that 0.07 Ghz is worth paying twice the price for a MB.

    That's what I've been saying. Look, I'm not arguing that there are literally no differences between the boards. I'm arguing that the differences are insignificant especially on the HEDT platform. Of course I'm not talking about LN2 cooling and extreme OCing, but about regular workhorse computers that one would daily at home.

    I posed the question specifically about the HEDT platform. And there it seems to me that even entry level MBs offer all the bells and whistles. There are already lots of options that are completely unknown to me, and one would need weeks of trials to find how they affect overclocking and stability.

    I started with:
     
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  18. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    All we saying here is Dan, you're unqualified to give "generic" advice on motherboard purchases because you work with them regularly, and are TASKED WITH ferreting-out those minute differences. You've been trained to care by marketign literature (to better do your job), even when those "benefits" are mostly hot air.

    Gimmicks people with more money than sense use to justify spending an extra $150 on a motherboard, but really mean nothing to the average user.

    Can you tell the difference between one audio implementation and another? When both are already high-quality? They both use the same audio chip, but one adds a headphone amp. Your average gamer who owns a gaming headset will just go USB and bypass the amp, leaving this a very small need.

    https://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-PC-373D-Surround-Headset/dp/B01IBORI2O

    Can you really point-out a need for reinforced slots, when you're not swapping cards on a daily basis?

    Can you really justify two NIC cards for a system that will almost certainly never be used as a router?

    Why would gamers need even more m.2 slots, when SATA6 SSDs are already overkill for regular usage (game load times and professional application load times).

    Wifi is the only spec on that list you could possibly justify, and that's not worth $150.

    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833320333
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  19. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?

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    That was kind of my point. I know there are differences between the Gaming 3 and 7. But I have a hardwired LAN (don't need Wifi or more than one LAN), I've been using the same set of Klipsch THX 2.1 speakers forever (gold plated connectors and USB DAC input isn't going to sway me one way or the other), I have 1 m.2 drive and a couple SATA drives (2 m.2 is about all I'd ever use for transferring data to one or the other), and I'm running a regular ATX case with 4 fans (don't need more than 4 fan headers), and I don't care for LEDs. I delidded my 7820x, and it went to 4.6Ghz all core (chip limit). So why would I buy the Gaming 7 when the Gaming 3 did all I needed it to do?

    I get it. There's an ass for every seat I suppose.
     
  20. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    I'm not angry with you.

    I'm not suggested you would run things in conditions outside of specifications. I simply stated that on some level, higher rated electronics will outlast lesser rated ones all other factors being equal. Not all cheap motherboards have decent components in them. I've seen some bargain basement shit with components with chipped edges I can't identify. I wouldn't trust anything like that over the long haul. As a service tech, I saw lots of systems die due to surges from their shitty power supplies and environments. Higher end motherboards are now building in safe guards against that sort of thing. Can you mitigate the need for that? Absolutely. It's just worth noting.


    The data is out there. I sometimes get upwards of 100MHz more on some boards over others. When you get into LN2 cooling, that's where you see larger differences. You also see it on the "professional" overclockers test setups where they use settings even I don't have time to mess with. You can edge out a bit more on a nicer board, but the value in that isn't for everyone. Look, once you get past a certain threshold, you start paying for aesthetics and features that few people use or have minimal impact. People who build multi-GPU machines with 8 core + CPUs in them aren't as concerned with buying something with bang for the buck in mind. They are looking for absolute performance and other qualities that many enthusiasts wouldn't spend the money on or can't afford.

    I literally just got done saying that those differences on the ultra-high end motherboards aren't for the average enthusiast. The differences and their significance varies depending on who you ask. If you ask me, I'd typically say yes if the system was for me. I use three NICs in my machine. I use more than 16GB of RAM. I use more than 16 PCIe lanes for graphics cards and other expansion devices. For me, that is the daily workhorse computer. My girlfriend doesn't need, want or use any of that crap. She runs a mini-ITX setup. So it depends on what you are doing with the system and what your usage case for it is as to whether or not there is value in the more expensive motherboards.

    Again, I already said the MTBF for cheaper boards is often sufficient these days. Unless your on the bleeding edge of overclocking or have specific uses in mind for certain features, going ultra-high end on the motherboard is often a waste of money. It's been this way for awhile and I have pointed this out in numerous posts and reviews. I'm the first person who would agree that buying a really expensive motherboard for longevity isn't necessary. It doesn't matter if a board will last 7 or 10 years when you only end up using it for 3-5 years. Again, all things being equal the more expensive board should last longer. However, it doesn't matter when they both last beyond the useful life span of the hardware.

    I've been doing this for years. There is plenty of information out there on the subject. There are tons of overclocking videos about this as well. I've even encountered this in more real world scenarios as pointed out between the AX370 Gaming 5 and AX370 Gaming K7 where the former was incapable of breaking 4.0GHz, while the other did it easily. Sometimes the cheaper boards don't give you all the utility you might need to hit certain overclocking goals. This is usually confined to bleeding edge overclocks, but not always. You have to take that on a case by case basis.

    Absolute fucking nonsense. I've been recommending and building systems for two decades. I sure as shit know how to recommend motherboards to people in different price points and different usage scenarios. Understand, I said that there is a difference between these motherboards and what those differences were. I never said, the more expensive motherboard was always worth it.

    Furthermore, you are the one who can't see past his own specific usage needs as if other motherboards with higher costs are of no value to anyone because of your singular viewpoint. I can see cases where a specific motherboard is of no value for certain cases and extra features may be a value add for others.

    Not all of those features are necessarily gimmicks. You pay more for an IC that allows for flashing without a CPU and RAM installed. This isn't a gimmicky feature. Some people monitor the fuck out of their fans and thermal sensors. The IC's that control that are worth while to some people. Some features are absolutely gimmicks, and I get that. Features you may not value personally don't always fall into that category either. Someone who spends more on motherboards than you do might have different needs than you, so it's not always about having more money than sense. For some people, $500 on a motherboard vs. $300 makes no difference at all.

    It depends on the audio implementation. Sometimes I can honestly say yes and other times I can't. It depends. There are a lot of variables here and sometimes you get a more expensive board with a lesser audio implementation and vise versa. So, I'll say: "It depends."

    Nope. I've said these were useless beyond their aesthetic quality on many occasions.

    Yes, but that's just for my specific needs. That's not something I'd ever recommend to most people. Some people may choose to do teaming to get some more bandwidth instead of going full 10GbE, but guys who want to do that know what they are getting. They might also opt for a real server adapter as well rather than the onboard. So I can see this either way. I will agree, this isn't something I'd recommend for gamers or most people in general.

    Your outlook on this is myopic. Frankly, there are gamers who have a storage fetish as well. There are people who have a storage fetish and don't care about gaming. Some people build worksations and disk I/O means more to them than a lot of things. These features are optional. Not everyone will need or want them. This is one of the many reasons why there are $250 motherboards, and $400 motherboards.

    Oh, and as a gamer I prefer running games off NVMe drives rather than anything SATA based. It doesn't help with load times in every game, but I'll take what I can get. I'd use three M.2 slots just to get more capacity if nothing else when striping together a volume. Everyone's preferences with storage are going to be different. Your inability to see what other "gamers" may or may not want doesn't make the feature useless. Its not for everyone, granted. But some people want that.

    You don't get it. The question was asked as to what the differences between lower and higher end boards was. I answered that. I've also said that value depends on the perspective of the potential buyer. Not everyone uses their systems the same way. Believe it or not guys, it's not just about what I want, or what you want. They make motherboards in various price points with varying feature sets for a reason. Not everyone has the same wants or needs.
     
  21. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    I rest my case. You've been exposed to so many fancy features that you're spoiled, and have no idea what the average user needs.

    Every one of your responses were things that nobody would ever need, unless they were running a server/high-end workstation (more m.2 slots, second network port), or bios flash tool (for those constantly tweaking their motherboards. READ: hardcore LN2 overclockers, and reviewers like yourself).

    Those aren't common use cases. The number of people PURPOSE-BUILDING heavily-loaded servers FOR THEMSELVES or tweaking their systems daily are pretty rare, even on here!

    This is why we have a a build requirements sticky in General Hardware. If you pop in there occasionally, you'll see that most builds don't require Server-level IO.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  22. guitarslingerchris

    guitarslingerchris Failure is just success rounded down

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    I feel like you are confused about what an HEDT actually is...
     
  23. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    For the majority of folks on here buying HEDT, it's typically a mix of gaming and Lightroom platform, or transsoding for their gamign sessions. Not exactly demanding work that requires three.2 slots and dual-Ethernet?

    For the folks that tell us they're building a real workstation, we tell them to buy a better motherboard: i.e step-up to a
    Supermicro system with a Xeon.
     
  24. guitarslingerchris

    guitarslingerchris Failure is just success rounded down

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    How you use it doesn't equate to what it is designed for. The use case you just described would be the Z series, not the X series.
     
  25. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    Some of the people who buy X when they can get by with Z are just guying to have it. But most are buying X so they have a longer-lived gaming system. They don't feel the need to upgrade all the time, and the X platform gives you overkill expansion slots!

    8700k has reduced the number of people who do this, but they still exist.


    So when building the HEDT system.if price is an object, then the first recommendation to go is a fancy motherboard. Those are rarely a good value unless you plan on using every single feature.

    If price is no object, then they buy whatever :D

    We don't tell them what to do. We just tell them the facts, and they make the call. That's how you build a system with feedback.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  26. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    You simply have an inability to see past your own needs or those of what you consider the average Joe's needs to be. The HEDT market isn't for the average user. It's for people who get into workstation applications, virtualization and a number of other applications and usage case scenarios that seem to be beyond your ability to conceptualize or understand. Since I've worked in a number of fields and supported systems in a variety of markets and environments, I can. My ability to put some of this hardware to use or conceive of reasons to use it doesn't make me spoiled. I've also been a system builder for two decades. I have built everything from basic SFF systems to high end workstations and servers.

    Bingo. The HEDT segment isn't for the average user. It's a niche market that covers both high end gaming and some workstation needs.
     
  27. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    You seem to be pivoting back to the same talking points even though I explicitly stated that I'm not interested in those. Like LN2 cooling or 3 NIC, or whatever.

    Let's assume for the sake of simplicity that there are two HEDT boards one for $250 and one for $500. Both have all the features I need, I'd use none of the extra features of the more expensive one.
    Then is it worth it for me to buy the 500 board? I think no, it cannot be justified in my opinion. That's all I'm arguing. This is not about people looking to set benchmark records or OC records. This is about getting the most for my money. And I think using that 250 to get a 7820x over a 7800x gets me more for my money than the marginal benefits the more extensive board offers. there isn't any guarantee that there would be any benefit in OCing especially on air or aio cooling.

    As a long time tinkerer and OCer, I think it is a much bigger success when you get a decent overclock using an underdog. For example when I used an ECS K7S5A it didn't matter how much I could OC because it was all free performance. Sure I could've gotten a few extra MHz with a more expensive board, but I'd have taken it for granted, and if I couldn't OC more with it I'd have banged my head against the wall.
     
  28. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    I keep circling back to the same points because they are being ignored. I've specifically said that those extra features are only worth it if your usage case scenarios align with those features. I say this all the time. There is a point where a motherboard is so cheap that going with something more expensive is a good idea for longevity etc., but in the HEDT market that's not so. Most of the time you are paying for features above all else. However, it still depends on the boards you are comparing as there are so many to choose from.
     
  29. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Because I asked for them to be ignored. I ask for an MPV and you keep insisting that it ha no vinyl roof. Sure it doesn't, because I'm not interested in a vinyl roof. I don't get why can't you accept that. I understand that these features are important to you and you decided it is worth dropping twice the price for an MB to get them. But don't try to sell your choices as the only sane choices. Others can have different needs and wants without being "wrong".
     
  30. somebrains

    somebrains Limp Gawd

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    So the OP missed all the PR for the Gigabyte UD4?

    Is there supposed to be an Apex stripped down along the same aesthetic guidelines?

    Stamping WS on a box doesn't make X299 C422.

    I don't live and die by reviews, at some point I'm going to just buy and rebuy until I find a solution for my use case.

    I'm starting with a used Gaming 3 and a cheap new 7820x with 128gb of ram.

    Unless reviewers dive into my specific workflow with my team I can only go by basics like "not for 140w CPUs" or "you will fight stacks of ram until you luck out and find a working kit". The rest is on me.
     
  31. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    Again, your reading comprehension is lacking. I never said that high end HEDT boards were for everyone, or that it was always worth the extra money to buy them. I think I've been very clear on this point.

    I simply said that there are cases where those features have a purpose and some people can justify the cost. A fact you can't grasp or accept. What you fail to comprehend is that a wide range of options exists because everyone's needs, wants, uses, and budget are different.

    I don't say server boards aren't worth the money or are useless simply because I don't need one or hate budget boards because I can afford more. You are like the people who hate Ferrari and think the are a waste of money and have no reason to exist because you can't afford one.

    I appreciate them, despite the fact I'll probably never be able to buy one. Just appreciate the fact that not everyone is like you and has different needs than you and move on.
     
  32. Skylinestar

    Skylinestar Limp Gawd

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    Looks like you just need the $250 Mobo. End of story. Others are bells and whistles that are useless to you.
     
  33. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Jun 12, 2012
    I opened a topic with a specific question: Are hiend HEDT boards worth it if you aren't using any of the extra features they have.
    The only thing you were clear about is that you refuse to respect the question I posed and keep talking about something else.
    Case and point you insist on ducking your head under the dinner table no matter how hard I keep trying to pull you up. You still talk about features that are irrelevant in my hypothetical scenario. You're explaining the nuances of a earrings to the person looking for a necklace.
    I conceded multiple times that there are people who might find those features useful, and justify spending extra on them. But asked you kindly to ignore them and make an apples to apples comparison between hiend and entry level HEDT boards, meaning only based on the features that both support. Which you continually ignore and keep pivoting back to "but there are people who need those features". Yes, there are, CAN WE MOVE ON NOW?
    And he still is unable to come to grasps with what I'm saying. The question isn't whether they're worth it at all. It is: Are they worth it if the extra features are left unused?
    The ferrari is a car made for a completely different purpose than a daily driver. Driving it in rush hour traffic every day would be hell. If you insist on this analogy my question was which is the better daily driver the Ferrari, or the regular mid range car? One could say you made my point for me, if only this car analogy would apply, but it doesn't.
    And I said multiple times now that I acknowledge that some people want those features, which was never in doubt except by you. But this still leaves my original question unanswered: Are they worth it if the extra features are unused?
    You completely hijacked the thread to insist on me admitting to something that was never even in question, and you keep doing it even after I admitted it multiple times. What more do you want from me, before we can get back to the topic on hand?

    I'm seriously starting to feel as if I'm having a discussion with a wall.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2018
  34. M76

    M76 [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
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    The question is not about what I want, it's completely hypothetical.

    How much better is a $800 HEDT board compared to a $250 HEDT board in the things that both can do? And can the extra price be justified based on just that metric. That's the end of it. Or rather that would be the end of it if Dan stopped revolving back to "But some people need those extra features".
     
  35. Nobu

    Nobu [H]ard|Gawd

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    I believe he answered your question several times already. The more expensive boards are worth it if you need the extra features they provide. They may provide better performance or last longer, but probably not enough to justify getting it just for that reason (unless you do ln2). If you don't need the features, get the less expensive hedt board. That's what I would do if I got an hedt board, because I have no need for a more expensive board and understand that the differences in build quality between different hedt boards will be minimal, probably less than the differences between boards from different brands at the same price point.
     
  36. Dan_D

    Dan_D [H]ardOCP Motherboard Editor

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    Feb 9, 2002
    It was never my intent to do so, but I apologize for going slightly off topic. I took one thing you said and ran with it. I do that sometimes. :)

    In any case, I've answered the question already. The short answer, is probably not. While there are sometimes quality differences, and higher end motherboards are certainly more capable overclockers on a technical level, your primarily limited by your CPU. Most CPU's tend to do just as well on boards that run the gamut on price range. Nicer motherboards do have better cooling and their voltage hardware can withstand adverse conditions for longer. Only you can decide if this is necessary. If you've got high ambient temperatures or high humidity where you are it might be worth investing in a motherboard that's had some consideration given to that in it's design. A motherboard with a thin PCB and heat sinks which are held in place by plastic pins and tension springs probably isn't. One with humidity protection, stainless steel I/O ports, and beefy ass heat sinks was designed to work almost anywhere. This is actually one of the marketing points on the ASUS TUF series and many GIGABYTE motherboards.

    Nicer motherboards can do better when comparing features shared by both the cheap motherboard and the pricey one. Audio is the easiest one to idenfity. They both have integrated audio but the higher end motherboard may very well have a nicer or better audio implementation just looking at the numbers, specs and features of the audio solution itself. That said, because audio quality is subjective, it's up to you to decide if you want that or even if you could discern the difference at all. Most people probably can't. If you get an HEDT motherboard that has two M.2 slots, sometimes one will have the UEFI support needed for setting up NVMe RAID arrays or booting to them. That's a feature, but at the same time it's something that any HEDT motherboard should be able to do if the slots are present but they are not all equal in this area. Many motherboards were never updated to do it. This is a non-issue if you don't need two slots or don't care about NVMe RAID.

    Aside from built quality, heat sink quality, VRD implementation etc., it comes down to features. As I've said many times in this thread, features are the biggest factor in motherboard price. The rest of it is about piece of mind when you are pushing the envelope. That's true whether or not your overclocking the shit out of the system or you live in the desert with only a swamp cooler to cool your home.

    Indeed. The good thing is that even when the quality is on the low end of the spectrum, at least regarding HEDT motherboards you should be fine so long as you understand the hardware's limitations. Most of those limitations are feature based or revolve around sustaining bleeding edge overclocks 24/7. Overclocks I might add that are often beyond the capabilities of average CPUs or in some cases, the people who put the system together.