It could possibly be argued that the very best motherboard is probably the most essential a part of any laptop. Not solely does it function the spine of your entire system – like a hub that each element wants to speak with – however with out it a pc would simply be a really costly paperweight. They’re greater than the inflexible spine of your PC, although. One of the best motherboards are completely full of attention-grabbing and compelling options that may allow you to additional make the most of your , and a few will go an additional step ahead – boosting the overclock potential of the very best processors.
Aside from the extraordinarily important perform they serve within the day-to-day perform of your PC, changing a malfunctioning or damaged motherboard is, effectively, a nightmare. You could be used to swapping out your GPU for the latest and best graphics card each few years, however a motherboard is an entire different animal – you’ll need to tear down your whole PC.
And that’s why we’ve put collectively this checklist of the very best motherboards out there in 2018. Each single motherboard right here has been extensively examined by the TechSwitch editorial employees and has earned our seal of approval. Not solely will the motherboards on this checklist do every little thing you want them to do and extra, they’re constructed to final. And, contemplating what number of completely different sorts of motherboards are on the market, it’s vital to know precisely what to search for.
Coming to phrases
Earlier than we dive into all the very best motherboards you should purchase at present, we want to embrace a little bit of a primer for anybody who won’t know what to search for. Motherboards can be found in a variety of various type components, mostly ATX and micro ATX. Nevertheless there are many extra esoteric type components together with the latest mini ITX. Don’t fear although, as a result of more often than not PC cases will help one or each of those type components.
Furthermore, in our rundown of the very best motherboards, we element the socket kind that every mobo adheres to. For these not within the know, the socket is the half on the motherboard that the CPU locks into. Sometimes, newer Intel processors use both LGA 1151 or 2066 whereas the newest AMD Ryzen structure is designed for the AM4 chipset.
Greatest Intel motherboard: Z370 Aorus Gaming 7
Discover the highest of your recreation
Kind Issue: ATX | Socket: LGA-1151 (Eighth-gen solely) | Chipset: Intel Z370 | Reminiscence help: Four x DIMM sockets (as much as 64GB) | Multi-GPU help: Nvidia 2- and Four-way GPU SLI, AMD 2-, Three- and Four-way CrossFire | Options: Three x PCIe M.2 (Key M)
No Thunderbolt Three
The place cash is not any object, the Z370 Aorus Gaming 7 from Gigabyte fairly actually shines. Decked out in RGB lighting galore, it’s the easiest way to have fun Intel’s Eighth-generation Espresso Lake processors in an ATX tower case. Restricted not by energy, however as a substitute by the restraints of your different elements, it’s additionally a champ on the subject of overclocking. That’s proper, you’ll be able to count on upwards of 5GHz constantly on this Z370 mobo.
Greatest funds Intel motherboard: MSI B250M Gaming Professional
Mild issues up with this low-cost motherboard from MSI.
Kind Issue: Micro ATX | Socket: LGA-1151 (Seventh-gen and earlier) | Chipset: Intel B250 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel 2 x DDR4 2400MHz (as much as 32GB) | Multi-GPU help: No | Options: 1 x PCIe M.2 (32-110mm), Intel Optane Reminiscence Prepared
Micro ATX type issue
Not a lot room for enlargement
Solely 2 RAM slots
You needn’t break the financial institution to get your laptop off on the suitable footing. This board from MSI is a superb, cheap answer. It is restricted in choices for future expansions, so it is best for a one-and-done construct. Since it is a gaming motherboard it has help for issues like “Mystic Mild Sync,” which helps you to synchronize all of your RGB lighting with a single click on.
Greatest Intel Micro ATX motherboard: ASRock B250M Pro4
A smaller form-factor with some room so that you can enhance
Kind Issue: Micro ATX | Socket: LGA-1151 (Seventh-gen and earlier) | Chipset: Intel B250 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel Four x DDR4 2400MHz (as much as 64GB) | Multi-GPU help: 2-Approach SLI, AMD Quad CrossFire X | Options: 1 x U.2, 1 x M.2 (Key M), Intel Optane Reminiscence Prepared
On-board video help
Helps 7.1 channel encompass
Restricted PCIe enlargement
This Micro ATX motherboard from ASRock packs loads of options onto a smaller type issue. You lose out on the potential for further PCIe slots, however there are Four reminiscence slots to improve to a most 64GB DDR4 RAM. It additionally has help for on-board graphics, so when you’re constructing a pc piecemeal, you’ll be able to nonetheless use it earlier than shopping for a devoted graphics card.
Greatest Intel Mini-ITX motherboard: Asus ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming
This small type issue motherboard is lit
Kind issue: Mini-ITX | Socket: LGA-1151 (Eighth-gen solely) | Chipset: Intel Z370 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel 2 x DDR4 Four,333MHz | Multi-GPU help: No | Options: Aura Sync RGB lighting, onboard M.2 heatsink, 5-way optimization, USB Three.1 Gen 2, Gigabit Ethernet with LANGuard, GameFirst, 2×2 802.11ac Wi-Fi and MU-MIMO help
Wi-Fi antennas included
Lacks SLI/Crossfire help
One of the best Intel Mini-ITX motherboard on our checklist kicks off our hunt for less than the very best Z370 mobos in the marketplace. That’s the chipset utilized by the chip maker’s Eighth-generation Coffee Lake processors, which incorporates every little thing from the Core i7-8700Ok all the way in which right down to the Core i3-8100. This ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming, whereas missing help for Nvidia SLI and AMD Crossfire multi-GPU, does ship Wi-Fi prepared with an included Asus 2 x 2 Wi-Fi adaptor.
Greatest AMD motherboard: MSI X370 Gaming Professional Carbon
Kind Issue: ATX | Socket: AM4 | Chipset: AMD X370 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel 2 x DDR4 Three,200MHz (as much as 64GB) | Multi-GPU help: 2-way SLI, CrossFire | Options: 2 x M.2 (Key M)
Superb trying motherboard
Constructed-in waterpump fan connector
No on-board video
In terms of AMD motherboards, the Gaming Professional Carbon from MSI doesn’t fiddle within the slightest. Not solely is it filled with a number of options to make it further interesting for AMD gaming PC builds, it has superior Mystic Mild RGB settings that may be adjusted through smartphone app. In addition to trying nice, it has loads of room for enlargement and help for twin graphics playing cards.
Greatest Finances AMD motherboard: Asus Prime A320M-Ok
A low-cost AMD motherboard to maximise value to energy.
Kind Issue: Micro ITX | Socket: AMD AM4 | Chipset: AMD A320 | Reminiscence Assist: Single-Channel 2 x DDR4 Three,200MHz (as much as 32GB) | Multi-GPU help: No | Options: 1 x PCIe M.2 (Key M)
Finances builds are virtually at all times primarily based round AMD . Not as a result of AMD is “funds,” however as a result of it is simply cheaper than Intel and Nvidia. Begin the construct off on the suitable, low-cost foot with this motherboard from ASUS. It has every little thing it is advisable to pull off a stable laptop construct, with out having to interrupt the financial institution. It lacks visible bells and whistles, however hey, it is a funds answer.
Greatest AMD Micro ATX motherboard: ASRock AB350M Pro4
Nothing flashy, however loads of efficiency to like
Kind Issue: Micro ITX | Socket: AMD AM4 | Chipset: AMD Promontory B350 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel Four x DDR4 Three,200MHz (as much as 64GB) | Multi-GPU help: 2-Approach SLI, AMD Quad CrossFireX | Options: 1 x PCIe M.2 (Key M)
Helps RAM overclocked to 3200MHz
Not flashy or thrilling
If you wish to get the place it is advisable to go, and you do not care about issues like fancy RGB lighting or eye-catching, futuristic-looking warmth dissipators, the AB350M Pro4 is the motherboard for you. Regardless of its plain-Jane seems and no-frills aesthetic, it is a stable motherboard with loads of room to broaden and develop together with your laptop wants.
Greatest AMD Mini-ITX motherboard: ASRock AB350 Gaming-ITX
An overclocker’s dream in a small type issue
Kind Issue: Mini-ITX | Socket: AM4 | Chipset: AMD B350 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin-Channel 2 x DDR4 Three,466MHz (as much as 32GB) | Multi-GPU help: No | Options: 1 x M.2 (Key M)
Blazing-fast RAM speeds
On-board graphics help
RAM tops out at 32GB
Small and highly effective, this ASRock motherboard is a beast, supporting overclocked reminiscence speeds as much as Three,466MHz for CPUs that help it. If that wasn’t sufficient to get your motor working, it additionally helps 4K resolutions and full Blu-ray help via its HDMI ports. Sure, ports: it has two, in addition to on-board video help.
Greatest Intel Core X-Collection motherboard: ASRock X299 Taichi
This one goes as much as 11, however extra precisely, 4400MHz reminiscence
Kind Issue: ATX | Socket: LGA-2066 | Chipset: Intel X299 | Reminiscence Assist: Quad-Channel eight x DDR4 Four,400MHz (as much as 128GB) | Multi-GPU help: Nvidia Three-Approach SLI, AMD Three-Approach CrossFireX | Options: Three x PCIe M.2 (Key M)
Gigantic reminiscence help
Slots for eight RAM modules
The X-series processors are right here they usually’re spectacular, so if you wish to make the most of all they’ve to supply, you want an X-series motherboard. This ASRock X299 is a superb selection, with help for overclocked reminiscence speeds as much as 4400MHz(!!!) and eight completely different slots for reminiscence modules. It additionally helps as much as 128GB of RAM, so with an X-series processor and graphics card (or Three…) this factor will completely tear aside something you throw at it.
Greatest AMD Ryzen Threadripper motherboard: ASRock X399 Skilled Gaming sTR4
That is the motherboard AMD desires are manufactured from
Kind Issue: ATX | Socket: sTR4 | Chipset: AMD X399 | Reminiscence Assist: Twin -Channel Four x DDR4 Three,200MHz (as much as 128GB) | Multi-GPU help: Four-Approach SLI, AMD Quad CrossFireX | Options: 1 x U.2, Three x PCIe M.2 (Key M)
Four-way SLI or Crossfire help
Superior RGB lighting
For those who’re the kind of builder with deep pockets and an “every little thing and the kitchen sink” construct mentality, this Ryzen Threadripper board is certainly for you. It helps Four-way SLI or Crossfire configurations, so you’ll be able to simply empty your checking account within the title of PC glory. All that graphical energy is supported by as a lot as 128GB DDR4 reminiscence, and there is even a flashy RBG lighting scheme to essentially drive dwelling the purpose.