I had this in the general hardware section, but maybe it's more of a motherboard section question. I am in the process of picking parts for upgrading my system, and what I thought would be an easy decision for a motherboard has turned into a very confusing decision. I want (I think) a z77 mobo and I am wavering back on forth on the decision. I thought I would reach out for some opinions on what I might require or even changes to proposed purchases. Per below, I will be looking at using the house power primarily for gaming and video transcoding. I will pay for features and necessary capability, but I prefer to buy the least expensive board that will do the trick. Some key points: - I will probably not be over-clocking right away, and if/when I do it will be a light OC (4.0, 4.2 ghz). - I will never run multi-gpu - With this mobo I will be buying: -- i5 3750K (I cant bring myself to completely shut off the chance to OC) -- 8GB PC 1600 Ram no specific brand/model picked yet likely the best deal at the time -- maybe an SSD So to the questions 1) Do I need to buy a mid-range board to be sure I am getting a quality board, or are there any good budget boards that will do the trick? (the naked power phase capacitors on the budget boards make me nervous) 2) Are there any specific recommendations for a budget board? For a mid-range board? (I keep leaning toward the AsRock z77 Extreme 4, but is it worth the extra $?) 3) Do I really need to go with z77 or should I consider SandyBridge and/or z68, or some other chipset to save money. 4) Is there anything in particular I should be looking at regarding power management (something I know little about). Here is the template for build questions for added detail. 1. What PC will be used for: - gaming, in particular Skyrim, Mass Effect 2/3, Civ 5 - transcoding video: mostly mkv to mp4 - some photoshop and illustrator work 2. Budget: up to $175 3. What country: Canada 4. Brand preference: leery of Biostar, but should I be? I like the AsRock and Gigabyte boards but Im not stuck on those. 5. Current parts being used: Current parts Asus HD 7870, Corsair 540W PSU, a bunch of various hard drives 7. IF YOU plan on over clocking: maybe, probably not right away 8. What resolution will you be using: 1920x1080 9. WHEN do you plan to build it: In the next week or so.