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Need Advice On New Midrange Skylake Build


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#1 blackfriar

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 04:36 AM

Hi,
 
I'd really appreciate some help with a build:
 
Current Setup
I work from home (nothing too intensive) from an i5 480M 4GB Laptop. I now have a chromebook for portability, so want to replace this sluggish laptop with a desktop. I don't game but working on the theory I can chuck in a 750 TI at a later date if needed. I don't use intensive programmes, but I'm not averse to a bit of future proofing, also my main issue with the laptop (Win 8.1) is general slowness, I often work with up to 30 Chrome tabs, do a bit of stuff like Handbrake that I'd happily see happen faster.
 
The Build
Budget £450/$700 not all of which I need to spend. Already have a new copy of Win 8 and setup will be running new 24in Samsung PLS + ancient Dell 21in. Slightly restricted in part selection as being built for me (parts from novatech.co.uk). Looking for this machine to have a long lifespan.
 
The Plan
Was thinking something like i5 4460 + GIGABYTE GA-H81M-S2H + Kingston HyperX Fury Red (2x4GB) DDR3. But suddenly Skylake is available so for close to same price I can get i5 6400 + ASRock H110M-DVS/D3 (or should I step up £30 to the MSI H170M PRO-VDH?) + Kingston HyperX Fury Black (2x4GB) DDR4.
 
Thanks


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#2 jonuk76

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 10:39 AM

I believe DDR3 if used with Skylake should be the low voltage (DDR3L 1.35v) type.  The memory controller is on the processor rather than the motherboard, and Intel does specify DDR3L so I'd be inclined to choose that (this one for example) if using the DDR3 motherboard.  I presume Novatech will advise on memory choice if they are building it for you.

 

The main difference between the motherboards, apart from memory type, is the chipset they use.  H110 is the most basic, and supports 4 x SATA 3.0 ports (vs 6 on H170),  4 USB 3.0 ports (vs up to 8 on H170), doesn't support PCIe M2 or SATA Express SSD's (H170 does), and supports 2 RAM slots (vs. 4 on H170), and less PCIe lanes to expansion slots.  There's other differences, those are probably the most obvious ones.  More info - Wikipedia    Arstechnica

 

For me, I guess the difference that will have most impact is the lower number of RAM slots - so if you fill the first motherboard with 8Gb at outset, in order to upgrade in future you'd have to remove the original memory.  I suspect PCIe SSD's are going to get a lot more popular too, as they are capable of huge performance increases over SATA, but it's early days and probably something most can do without for the time being.  USB ports obviously you can add a hub, and I don't know many situations where you'd need more than 4 SATA ports.

 

Personal opinion - the motherboard is the hardest part to upgrade, so look at the feature sets, and if there's a chance you will want something the more expensive board offers, then it's better to buy it upfront.

 

I'd also consider this which is in between the two in terms of features and price and a trusted brand - http://www.novatech.co.uk/products/components/motherboards/intelsocket1151/b150chipset/b150m-a.html


Edited by jonuk76, 17 October 2015 - 10:47 AM.

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#3 blackfriar

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 11:14 AM

Thanks for that, a better breakdown of the mobo differences than I've read anywhere online!

 

I think you've convinced me that for the sake of £30 (or £8 for the B150) I'm just gonna go for the H170. Ultimately I'm never going to change the mobo I don't suspect so might as well future proof right from the start, and things like PCI SSDs might actually be relevant to me in 4 or 5 years time.

 

My only other thing is performance difference between the i5 6400 and the i5 4460 (that I was originally planning on getting). I've read a few things about the 6400 having a "low" clock speed, and it's also cheaper than the 4460 for some reason. But I can't actually find a single review of the 6400.

 

Is this just a benchmark thing, something I'd be unlikely to notice in real life?

 

I mean I could step up to the 6500 but that's another £20 so I'd rather not, especially given an i5 in general is probably well above my needs.

 

6400 £140 http://www.novatech.co.uk/products/components/processors/intelskylake1151/bx80662i56400.html 

4460 £144 http://www.novatech.co.uk/products/components/processors/intelhaswell1150/bx80646i54460.html 

6500 £160 http://www.novatech.co.uk/products/components/processors/intelskylake1151/bx80662i56500.html



#4 jonuk76

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 11:54 AM

Providing "turbo boost" is enabled it'll clock up to 3.3 Ghz on 1-2 cores, 3.2 Ghz on 3 and 3.1 Ghz on 4 cores.  The HD 530 graphics are an upgrade over the HD 4600 in Haswell; from what I've seen probably comparable with a video card like an AMD R7-240 (as used in some AMD APU's), so not great but for most non gamers, more than adequate, with very good video acceleration features.

 

Normally the enthusiast sites concentrate on the K models, and gloss over the others.  I don't think you'll be disappointed though, as the benchmark sites are suggesting performance is close, despite the headline clock speed difference.

 

http://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i5-6400-vs-Intel-Core-i5-4460/m35537vs2310

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/compare.php?cmp[]=2578&cmp[]=2230


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#5 blackfriar

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 12:04 PM

Brilliant thanks, mind made up :)



#6 jonuk76

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Posted 17 October 2015 - 12:18 PM

You're welcome :)


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