micro, thanks a lot for your input. You post made it easier for me to decide.
Finally, I upgraded my system. I got the GA-Z68X-UD3H, the i7-2600K and a set of 16 GB DDR3-1600 G.Skill RAM (1.5v).
The board is solid. Everything was running as it should from first boot (thank God).
I was a little worried about the overall setup. Some people reported a few problems and that discouraged me a little.
I loaded Win 7 x64....looking sweet on my Samsung 23" monitor in full HD resolution.
I like Win 7...except for the tons of security alerts and settings...I know it is good...but a little annoying. I still don't understand why Win 7 is eating my RAM and disk space. RAM's free space is always around ZERO. Some people are talking about some caching mechanism that 7 uses.
Also, I allocated 100 GB of disk space for the OS. I am down to 45 GB of free space.
Actual used space is around 16 GB. I check system restore settings and they are ok.
I think 7 is doing some backup functions...I did not pay much attention to the problem yet.
I will check it out later.
As I said, the board is solid and I like the black color...looks great with the red sink around the RAM sticks.
However,I don't like how the cooler is very close to the RAM slots. I want to buy a decent cooler
so that I can overclock the processor. I am having some concerns about the space.
I don't think any cooler would fit. I tried to fit my old Freezer 7. The sink could fit
with proper mounts. The fan cannot. It touches the first memory stick's sink.
The store I got the board from has an Antec 620 self-contained liquid cooler. He wants 133 US dollars for it.
I checked some performance reviews and I did not like the results...especially at this price.
I think I will stick with air cooling.
There is a store in Bahrain that is offering Noctua NH-C14 and Noctua NH-D14.
Both of them are carrying the same price; $92.75. I thought about getting one of them.
I am just afraid if they would fit.
As for the processor, the i7-2600K is great. The only problem is the cooler that comes with it.
It is a joke. Temps could easily hit 60 C. I did not put the processor under any serious loads,
but I think it would cross the 80 C mark under stress benches like Prime95.
Also, the 4th core seems to run hotter than the rest. I am a little concerned because
the 1st core temp would idle around 35 C while the 4th core idles around 45 C.
I understand that temperature varies between cores, but 10 C difference is a bit worrying.
I did notice that the 4th core is usually carrying the highest load.
I am using RealTemp to monitor the CPU temperature. I was thinking of re-mounting the cooler...not sure about that, yet.
All in all, I like what I got for myself...I am sticking to this setup for a few years.
I just might need to change my GTX 285 in a year or so. Let's see what next gen gfx bring to the table.
Again, thanks, micro.
Have a good day, everyone.