X51 Motherboard died -- replace or new build

Discussion in 'WOLFTech Lounge' started by Dago Red, Jun 4, 2016.

  1. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    My trusty Alienware X51's motherboard died on me. I realize these aren't your Dad's Alienwares anymore, but this rig served me very well since 2012. Anyone know how to get hands on a first generation (often referred to as X51 R1, as opposed to R2 or R3 models that they're on now) replacement part?

    Dell is no help, having discontinued the model, even if they still sell essentially the same computer. Motherboard ID is 08PG26, which returns some hits on ebay, but that's too sketchy for me.

    Topic 1: I'd prefer to find a new one and keep this disaster to $100. I need to find a credible replacement board and then someone to do the work, but it's not looking good.

    Topic 2: Looking at new computers, even though I'm low on funds at the moment. Main contenders are similar small form factor (must be) options at Maingear, Origin, and Cyberpowerpc. Any experience with those?
     
  2. GiJoe

    GiJoe WGN Founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Messages:
    49,399
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
  3. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Slacker. :cool:

    Amazes me that here we are in the future, year 2016, and people still buy gaming computers the size of checked baggage. I remember getting little input last time around on small form factor rigs, but that was 4 years ago.

    Here's what I know:

    Stock computers at best buy, etc suck (unless you get lucky at a specific store that carries an exotic model for a promotion).

    Dell makes solid work computers, but their alienwares are a shadow of what they were before, now with middling parts that can burn out and plastic cases.

    Maingear makes great custom computers with decent deals attached to keep prices within reason. No plastic or crap components. Their SFF case, The Drift, outperforms Origin's in terms of noise and heat issues.

    Origin is the new alienware, but without a running deal (they do have them often, right now free 2TB seagate SSHD), they're expensive. The PS/Xbox sized Chronos gets amazing reviews but everyone says it's loud, and loud as hell under load.

    Xidax is interesting, with lifetime parts warranties. There's no color I hate more than neon green though.

    Puget systems, Avadirect, and Velocity Micro don't cut it for price vs component selection. Not sure what they're thinking trying to market to gamers.

    Need to look more at Digital Storm, Falcon Northwest has awesome stuff, but base prices are $2,000!

    ibuypower and cyberpc, other than having lame names, have cheap prices until you select quality components. They lure you in with buckets of free crap you don't need, and at the end, are just as pricey (if not more!) than boutique US-based makers, with US based support and service, like the above.
     
  4. GiJoe

    GiJoe WGN Founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Messages:
    49,399
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    I have an old Dell Mobo. Works fine after upgrading GFX card and Memory. Stuck in a pair of SSD drives and works great!

    It's about 6 years old now... My old company bought it for me. :) The one I had before died. I use them for "WORK" too so when this one dies I may ask the company I work for now to replace it as well. :p

    Your research sounds daunting... ;)
     
  5. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    It is daunting. Should I spend an extra $75 to overclock the i5 6600k, or up my 8GB RAM to 16 instead? Or just get the i7 (non k) for the same price and leave it at 8GB because 2666MHz is good enough compared to 16GB at 2100MHz anyway? Do I have to liquid cool this motherboard in that case, but not that motherboard in this case, because it has adequate airflow? 40 other questions like this are why people often buy the wrong thing.
     
  6. GiJoe

    GiJoe WGN Founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Messages:
    49,399
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
  7. GooGeL

    GooGeL Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,683
    Likes Received:
    51
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Nah, leave it (processor). 16GB of ram is nice but I wouldn't say it's required but its a good thing. I have multiple monitors and enjoy stacking up a heap of tabs in Chrome, so I need it. Speed/frequency on RAM makes very little difference, it gives only a tiny percentage in performance... if even that.

    What matters the most today is your GPU. It's where you find the most horsepowers these days to be able to run high settings ingame.

    In general the CPU/motherboard will OC itself if it finds the headspace to do so, up to a point. I haven't really touched my newest system and done any OCing just because it would be quite annoying to have a heap of pics or work being corrupt due to system instability. Its not something I'm too worried about really, since you stress test the system before daily 24/7 usage... but I'm fine and dandy as of now to just run it at Volvo-mode. I guess it comes down to that I've been too lazy.
     
  8. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Yeah I hear you, I concentrated on the graphics card and left the overclocking alone -- also because I'd feel the need for liquid cooling if I overclocked and that adds at least another $90. For that, you can bump an i5 6600k up to an i7 6700 (non k, but still). The other thing gamers should understand is that an i5 66ook actually has a comparable speed range to an i7 non k, and there hasn't been a game on the market yet that takes advantage of hyper-threading or more than 4 cores. Thus, buying an i7 is really a waste of an extra $75-100, unless, you're thinking 3+ years out. In my case I was thinking about Star Citizen, so I went for the i7.

    Here's what I got:[​IMG]
    Maker: Maingear. Model: Drift (the Steam machine variant, but with Windows 10 as the main OS).
    i7 6700 3.4GHz/4.0GHz Turbo QUAD Core CPU w/Hyperthreading 8MB L3 Cache (stock, non k)
    GeForce GTX 970 4GB with G-sync (whatever that is)
    16GB HyperX® FURYT DDR4- 2666
    450W Silverstone ST45SF 80 Plus (500w power upgrade was totally necessary since everything runs cooler and with lower wattage now)
    250GB Samsung 850 EVO [520MB/s Sequential Reads (Dual-boot Windows and Steam OS and select game drive)
    1TB Seagate HDD (for everything else)

    Comes with Wifi, onboard 7.1 (but I have an external THX soundblaster) slot loading optical, bluetooth, and some other standard stuff. Only got the 1 year parts warranty, but this is all made in the US on the east coast, with lifetime support. I did not spring for the vintage racecar paintjob pictured unfortunately. SOme day when I'm rich and have the extra $250 to piss away on that, I will ;) My brushed aluminum chassis is stock grey/black.
     
  9. GiJoe

    GiJoe WGN Founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Messages:
    49,399
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
  10. GooGeL

    GooGeL Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,683
    Likes Received:
    51
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Over here the 6700K only costs a few bucks more over the 6700.
    The 6700 stock speed is 3.4GHz vs 4.0GHz for the K-model. Plus the K-model turbo itself up to 4.2GHz, while the none-K stops at 4GHz. However the 6700 draws less power and spits out less heat, since its rated at 'only' 65W TDP vs 95W for the K-model.

    I wouldn't buy any GTX 980/970 as of today. I would just wait or grab an GTX 1070/80. It's the newest shizzle. If you lack the funding, get yourself the 6600K and buy one of the cards. An i7 is luxury for many reasons, yeah... but for just a general gaming rig... I'm somewhat doubtful you'll see the difference. You'll notice the difference between an GTX 970 vs a 1070 however.

    And you can overclock the 6600K if you choose to.
     
  11. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    TOO LATE, I BLAME YOU!

    But actually, hell no anyway. The 1070 is an extra $155 and the 1080 is an extra $470. There is no way I'll need anything more than a 970 for the next 5+years, which is already VR certified and pretty much top shelf in performance. It's not just a step up from the nearest competition either, it totally blows away the GTX 960 -- which is closer to my 5 year old GTX 660 (in the burned out alienware) than it is to its 970 big brother. The value you get from the 970 is staggering. Will I even need VR within 2 or 3 years? Only if you and Pete get your heads out of your arses.
     
  12. GooGeL

    GooGeL Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,683
    Likes Received:
    51
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Neither my GTX 980 Ti or the 970 will be able to run any VR games in 2-3 years (me thinks, at any high settings). Most likely the resolution is lots and lots better in the glasses and the beauty in the games themself, has stepped up a notch.

    I.e. our cards got no proper DX 12 support.

    Working this week so, I'm just eating working eating sleeping. Starting from 4 AM.
     
  13. Dago Red

    Dago Red Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    11,008
    Likes Received:
    63
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    Looking for advice on using an SSD for my main drive (OS + the games that really need it). Anyone have experience moving games to and from an SSD when needed?

    I'm especially curious to see how this relates to steam. I read there's a function to link steam library games in another drive, so you could either have steam on a regular HD data drive with these links created to the game(s) that on the SSD that need the faster loads... or have it installed on the primary SSD, then move most of the games that don't need fast boot/load times to the data drive, via the links. Not sure which is better. Anyone do this?
     
  14. GiJoe

    GiJoe WGN Founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2002
    Messages:
    49,399
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Home Page:
    I have two SSDs and that's it. I don't move them back and fourth though... Maybe use it for your games only? The OS won't load as fast on a standard mechanical disk but games will load more quickly.
     

Share This Page