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I'm planning to upgrade my PC this month, but I'm thinking of what should I upgrade first:

  1. New case, along with a water cooler and power supply
  2. A new ASUS Z170 Pro (LGA1151) motherboard (ASUS Specification, Review on Tweaktown).

The statement that 'Gaming motherboards are more durable' has long been argued on the internet, with statements that 'gaming motherboards' have better surge protection, capacitors/resistors etc. and I tend to agree in the place where I work, most PC's break down due to motherboard faults.

I would like to ask, should I go with my first choice or my second choice?

The current PC seems to suffer from high humidty/heat - there is no air-con in the room and the case has rust located on it.

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  • In all honesty there is no logical, correct answer - too many variables. Heat, dust, condition of PC, usage and it can also boil down to the quality of the build (of motherboard etc.) – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 8:16
  • Did you figure out why you have rust on your case? As for an performance increase it would depend on what you currently got but it's unlikely that it will be significant. With the money you save by not going for a water cooling solution you probably would be able to buy a new graphics card or similar, which would be a bigger performance increase. As stated in your last question they can be more durable in some aspects as they usually support overclocking but it would depend on what you need. Heat, power supply and stability, dust and humidity require different kinds of stability. – Seth Jan 25 '17 at 8:42
  • @Mr.J I added my answer before you edited/added your new comment. Of course "Gaming Motherboards" are more durable and increase performance (in general) as they're typically more expensive and more purpose-pointed; a high-end motherboard/CPU etc. will render better results gaming than not. – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 8:47
  • @Mr.J For your reference, here are some sites of value: gpuboss.com , cpuboss.com and motherboards.specout.com – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 8:57
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Comparing aftermarket cooling, a brand new(more air efficient) case and PSU against a motherboard is not fair at all. Motherboards are normally not the first thing to turn stale in a computer that is treated well.

If you want to game, have a longer lasting computer and improve your performace, get the first option. The second option will have negligible effects on the performance of your computer.

Check out this video about motherboards by LinusTechTips, in my opinion, they give good advice on the Do's and Don't's of building your gaming machine.

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  • Agreed that Motherboards are generally reliable, but so is a PSU (often can fry a motherboard at the same time, along with components). The question is pretty odd overall as I believe there are too many variables; lifetime and performance cannot be asked in the same topic I believe, but agree with your answer! – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 8:50
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To answer your question, simply, for you I first need to point out:

  • You have not specified the explicit case or cooling system, making it very difficult to even speculate on your question

  • You have not provided information on your CPU or GPU temps - it would be best to measure your CPU and GPU temps to see if they are currently sufficient.

  • You have not specified what games you are intending to play.

Now, none of that really matters. As I said in my comment your question is rather difficult to answer correctly as there are way too many variables to take into account:

  • How does your PC sit? Depending on how your PC sits would first determine how well the case can 'breath', how much air-flow the device receives and overall, how susceptible it is to shock (as in, being kicked etc.)

  • How frequently do you run your PC? Most components have a general life expectancy, many Intel SSD's have a read/write life as an example.

For your reference, here are some blogs you may be interested in:

Now, I can relate your question to a typical car related question:

How many miles will I get out of a tank of fuel in my car?

Is there an accurate answer to this question? No. It all comes down to user-related variables. Here are 7 easy tips to improve the lifespan of your PC.

Lastly to summarize on your question -

IF your CPU temps are higher than normal (you can simply google '<your cpu> temp' on Google to find out) than I'd suggest getting the water cooler before and case (PSU and Motherboard are not as important).

IF your CPU temps are normal and well, I'd consider hold off and do them all at once if feasible, because needing to migrate your motherboard twice (for a case) is not going to do wonders for it, try and make it one smooth transition.

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  • In the original question, which seems to have been deleted by him, he mentioned that he didn't have a AC and was living in a more tropic environment and also that there was rust on this current case. As such my assumption would be that he might be running into problems with high humidity and water cooling solution are pretty expensive it might be easier to get better air coolers or AC for a single room or similar (I'm not exactly sure how much they cost). – Seth Jan 25 '17 at 10:08
  • @Seth Ahh, well that's more helpful. Probably best to then get an 'open case' and, oh, a Noctura NH-D15 push-pull air pump. Indication of rust? Agree that sounds like high humidity and possible moisture exposure; all in all though I believe my answer remotely valid still. Thanks for adding this information. – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 10:10
  • It sure is, the question is missing a lot of detail and trying to aim at different objectives (increasing performance AND fixing components before they break down) which require different approaches. – Seth Jan 25 '17 at 10:14
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    @Seth Correct. two different 'end results' that do not coincide at all. I believe in the comments we answered 'would this improve performance' and in our answer(s) we covered the topic of hardware lifespan. Hopefully this is enough for the user. – DankyNanky Jan 25 '17 at 10:22
  • So I still have lots of information missing, I really thought I narrowed it down to the things I need help in. Asking my query became very very challenging. – Mr.J Jan 26 '17 at 0:04

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