Best Motherboards For Gaming: List Of Best Motherboards

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Best Motherboards For Gaming

While CPUs and video cards are essential for any good gaming PC, they don’t represent the whole picture. Motherboards are the unsung heroes of PC gaming, and no rig is complete without them. Obviously, the primary reason they’re important is that they house your components — anybody could tell you that. We will list best motherboards for gaming.

But there’s even more to the story than that alone. It’s true that motherboards don’t have any real impact on your FPS or overall gaming performance — not directly — but they do serve one critical function. Motherboards provide stability to your system.

Take it from somebody who has gone the cheap route before – getting a crappy motherboard will potentially result in system failure and irreparable damage to your other components. You don’t want that.

In addition to the quality of a motherboard possessing the ability to make or break an entire build, there are numerous other, smaller benefits to grabbing a solid one. These range from minor luxury features like a few extra USB ports, to performance-enhancing benefits such as the ability to install better (newer) CPUs.

Best Motherboards For Gaming: Do I Need an Expensive Motherboard?

For the average user, motherboards (or mobos for short) are about features and roughly speaking doesn’t directly influence performance. While this is a bit of an oversimplification, as long as you get a motherboard that will be a match for your selected components, you’re in clear, calm waters.

What are you missing out on if you don’t get an expensive motherboard? Cheaper motherboards typically do not have support for CrossFire or SLI. They also have fewer USB ports, fewer niche ports like USB C/M.2/Sata Express, and less overclocking ability. That’s on top of a higher risk of failure (or underperformance) and inadequate WiFi/Bluetooth features. Again, if you aren’t going to use certain features or ports, you’re wasting money. Just get what you need.

Gaming Motherboard Features:

  • Cool Lighting Implements
  • Stable BIOS
  • Top-Notch Overclocking
  • Extra Ports and Slots
  • WiFi / Bluetooth Support
  • Power, System Reboot, Memory, Bios Entry Buttons
  • Water Cooling, Flow Tachometer

Personal Satisfaction

This one is a bit subjective, of course. But if you’re building a rig, there’s something to be said for the feeling of accomplishment you get from putting it all together yourself.

Of course, if you’re completely new to PC gaming, there are a few benefits to having a professional do it. After all, they have specific tools for the job, and they’ve probably received quite a bit of training prior to starting work (meaning it’s unlikely they’ll break or damage anything).

Still, if you do your research and take your time, putting together your own build can be immensely satisfying.

Best Motherboards For Gaming: Processor Talk

The CPU is, without a doubt, one of the most important components in a gaming PC. It’s one of the only parts that actually has a direct impact on your FPS, after all. But only if you can actually take advantage of them. And doing that requires a good motherboard.

First of all, it doesn’t matter how fast your new CPU is if you can’t even install it in the first place. With how quickly technology (especially computer hardware) is advancing, the latest CPUs won’t always work with motherboards from 4 years ago – no matter how good they were at the time. The number of cores increases and clock speeds change.

Although Intel’s recent move away from their tick-tock release cycle will help with extending this compatibility by another generation, it’s still a temporary fix. Sooner or later, a motherboard upgrade is going to be essential. And for AMD users, their all-new Ryzen 5 chips will likely breed an entirely new generation of fantastic motherboards, so there’s all the more reason to go with something new.

New games are continually developed around the latest CPU technology, so picking a modern motherboard now will pay off for years to come.

Best Motherboards For Gaming: Multiple Graphics Cards

Remember when you only needed one video card to get top-of-the-line gaming performance?

Well, that’s still true… to a degree. A single card is perfectly adequate for running games on Ultra settings at 60FPS (depending on the specific card, of course) and 1080p, but what if you want to push things even further? What if you’re interested in high-end, VR gaming? Or cracking 144 FPS? One card probably ain’t gonna cut it – not for demanding games.

That tier of gaming performance will require more than a single GTX 1080. Fortunately, the best gaming motherboards offer full support for multiple top-shelf video cards, allowing you to get the most out of your system.

Enter NVIDIA SLI and ATI Crossfire. SLI and Crossfire technologies use a combination of techniques to enhance graphics performance, including:

  • antialiasing
  • split frame rendering
  • alternate frame rendering
  • super tiling (Crossfire only)
  • and, of course, the ability to use dual GPUs

Not only does this allow you to maximize your gaming performance (and FPS), it also serves to extend the life of your parts – something any PC gamer who has dealt with failing parts in the past can appreciate.

1. Best Motherboards For Gaming ASRock B450M PRO4 MicroATX Motherboard 

  • CPU & Socket Support: AMD Ryzen Processors, AM4 Sockets
  • Form Factor: MicroATX
  • RAM Capacity: Up to 64GB DDR4 RAM
  • PCI-E Slots: x3
  • NVIDIA SLI/AMD Crossfire Support? Crossfire
  • USB Ports: USB 3.1 Gen 1 & 2
  • Audio Driver: Realtek ALC892
  • SATA: x4

An incredible set of features at an exceptional price… that’s what you’re getting with the ASRock B450M PRO4 Motherboard. You can expect insane performance with the MicroATX form factor and latest AMD AM4 Ryzen socket. Stack on cutting edge tech like AMD Quad CrossFireX and late-gen USB 3.1 ports, and you’re looking at the best micro ATX motherboard for gamers on a budget.

Best Motherboards For Gaming

2. GIGABYTE Z370 AORUS Ultra Gaming Motherboard

  • CPU & Socket Support: 8th Gen Intel Core Processors, LGA 1151 Sockets
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • RAM Capacity: Up to 64GB DDR4 RAM
  • PCI-E Slots: x6
  • NVIDIA SLI/AMD Crossfire Support? Both
  • USB Ports: USB 3.1 Gen 1 & 2
  • Audio Driver: Realtek ALC1220
  • SATA: x6

While ASUS and MSI win the popularity contest in the motherboard department, don’t count Gigabyte out. Their excellent pricing makes them worth a second look (and a third and fourth). This particular model is compatible with 8th gen Intel Core processors (i7, i5, and i3). An intuitive UEFI, WIFI onboard, RGB Fusion technology, and triple M.2 slots complete the unit, offering tremendous value.

There’s not much overclocking potential here, but other than that this one’s a grand slam.

3. Best Motherboards For Gaming ASUS TUF X299 Mark 1 Motherboard

  • CPU & Socket Support: 7th Gen Intel Core X Processors, LGA 2066 Sockets
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • RAM Capacity: Up to 128GB DDR4 RAM
  • PCI-E Slots: x5
  • NVIDIA SLI/AMD Crossfire Support? SLI
  • USB Ports: USB 3.1 Gen 1 & 2
  • Audio Driver: Realtek S1220A
  • SATA: x8

There’s ASUS. And then there’s ASUS TUF.

As you might expect, the X299 Mark 1 falls in the latter category. This gives it incredible performance potential, as it’s outfit with military-grade hardware for maximum speeds. It’s also load with dual M.2 slots, Type-C connectivity, and Intel Optane support! This translates to maximum gaming performance that’ll leave your competition in the dust.

4. MSI X299 Gaming Pro Carbon ATX Motherboard

  • CPU & Socket Support: Intel Core X Processors, LGA 2066 Sockets
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • RAM Capacity: Up to 128GB DDR4 RAM
  • PCI-E Slots: x6
  • NVIDIA SLI/AMD Crossfire Support? Both
  • USB Ports: Lightning USB 3.1 Gen 2
  • Audio Driver: Nahimic 2 Technology
  • SATA: x8

The MSI X299 Gaming Pro Carbon Motherboard is one with few compromises. In fact, you can max this out at 4.6GHz if you were on a Core i9-7900X. That’s just a bit less oomph than other top boards that have those sky-high prices. And this one comes in at quite the bargain price!

As such, this is a top-notch Intel HEDT motherboard, and our pick for the best X299 motherboard for the money.

Best Motherboards For Gaming

5. Best Motherboards For Gaming ASUS ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming Mini-ITX Motherboard

  • CPU & Socket Support: 8th/9th Gen Intel Core Processors, LGA 1151 Sockets
  • Form Factor: Mini-ITX
  • RAM Capacity: Up to 64GB DDR4 RAM
  • PCI-E Slots: x1
  • NVIDIA SLI/AMD Crossfire Support? No
  • USB Ports: USB 3.1 Gen 2
  • Audio Driver: ROG SupremeFX
  • SATA: x4

For those who enjoy gaming machines with small footprints (or desk prints, we should say) the Strix Z390-I leads the pack in terms of value. Despite its smaller stature, it still packs a whopping punch of features including WiFi, Ethernet, USB 3.1 Gen 2, dual M.2 slots, and legit overclocking capabilities thanks to the ASUS Opti-MEM II. It’s one of the best Mini-ITX gaming motherboards on the market.

Summary

Whatever your budget might be, there’s an excellent motherboard out there for you. So long as it supports the level of gaming performance you want to achieve (and, by extension, your video card and CPU), any motherboard will do the job just fine – but the ones on this list are the absolute best of the best.

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