I have an old Dell Studio XPS 8100 that has been updated rather haphazardly. Now I would like more expansion slots and a faster CPU.

I don't know what motherboard + CPU combination would be a good fit for my existing components. Since I will be buying both together, I would like to get something future-proof and a good performance match. I also have existing parts that I would like to keep, so compatability is important.

Intended usage:

  • Software development (fast compile times are a priority)
  • Photoshop
  • 3D modelling software
  • 4K monitor
  • Hackintosh for app development
  • Light gaming

The parts I would like to keep are:

  • Case Corsair 750D
  • GPU ASUS Nvidia 970GTX
  • PSU Corsair RM450
  • Primary Storage Samsung Evo 850 SSD
  • Secondary Storage Toshiba DT01ACA SATA HDD
  • RAM 3x2GB generic Dell ram (will be upgraded later)

Parts I would like to accomodate:

  • Dedicated sound card
  • USB3 ports on my case (currently not connected)
  • Extra USB3 slots PCIe card
  • Faster CPU

Note that my case is large enough for an extended ATX motherboard, but I don't know if this is worth the cost vs ATX.

  • What's your budget?
    – user1691
    Aug 1, 2016 at 20:17
  • Tough question. I can spend quite a lot, since my machine is primarily used for work, however I care about value for money more than having everything top of the line. A range of options would be helpful.
    – sdgfsdh
    Aug 1, 2016 at 20:20

1 Answer 1


From expeience Gigabyte motherboards have been really easy or more straight forward to get working.

An amazing CPU you can get maybe Intel 6700k, that is really high powered and future proof.

Since this list contains an updated: CPU and Motherboard you will need to get DDR 4 memory.

So lets start with this combiniation:

Since i do not see a budget, i think these two will be a great combinaton. This is the combination of components i picked out for my fathers hackintosh system.

Here is the link to installation: http://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/success-hackintosh-i7-ga-z170x-ud5-th-i7-6700k-gigabyte-gtx-970.192392/

Now im going to answer your other points from here on.

  • Software Development: 6700k has fast single and multi core performance so it should be a piece of cake for this CPU to compile applications on.

  • Photoshop: 6700K has intergrated graphics cabablities, but since you have a GTX 970, no reall hardware accelerated problems i can see arrising.

  • 3D Modeling Software: Just like Photoshop i would say most of these applications have hardware acceleration built so they can take advantage of your GPU, but as far as rendering you should have some pretty decent rendering times of your 3d models.

  • Hackintosh: Like i mention above, my father has these paired components in his hackintosh build, and there have been other people who have had a succesful time with thise two parts.

  • Gaming: 6700k as mentioned before is a powerful single and multicore performing chip and since you have an GTX 970, you are pretty solid since a it seems games are trying to use as mush of the GPU and little of the CPU as possible.

Hope this help. :)

  • 1
    Better add RAM to that too, gonna need DDR4 with that 6700K.
    – user1691
    Aug 1, 2016 at 20:17
  • So you wouldn't consider extended-ATX worth the money?
    – sdgfsdh
    Aug 1, 2016 at 20:22
  • @SiXandSeven8ths thanks about the DDR4, justed added that to the list of parts. Aug 1, 2016 at 20:26
  • 1
    @sdgfsdh: I personally dont find Exended-ATX worth the money. From what ive noticed they just give you more PCI slots, and sometimes more Ram slots. Aug 1, 2016 at 20:28

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