best gaming motherboards

Best Motherboards for Gaming

 The motherboard of your gaming computer connects all of the parts to work together. This vital element of your computer is at the heart of your PC, so it’s important to find the right one for your gaming set up. If you’re building your own gaming PC, you’ll want the best gaming motherboard that fits your other parts like the processor, graphics card, and other features. 

The best motherboards for gaming have room for expansions and overclocking capability to push your gaming rig to its full potential. Check out our favorite gaming motherboards to complete your gaming computer! 

Best Motherboards for Gaming in 2020

  1. Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra Gaming Motherboard
  2. Asus ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi) Gaming Motherboard
  3. MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus Motherboard
  4. Asus TUF Z390-Plus Gaming Motherboard
  5. Asus ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming Motherboard
  6. Gigabyte Z390 UD Motherboard
  7. MSI X470 Gaming Plus Motherboard
  8. Gigabyte X570 Aorus Elite Gaming Motherboard
  9. ASRock B450M-HDV Gaming Motherboard

 

Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra Gaming Motherboard

Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra

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Features:

  • Supports Intel 8th & 9th Gen Core i9/i7/i5/i3, Celeron, and Pentium Processors
  • Chipset: Z390
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: 4 DIMM, 64 GB, Dual Channel DDR4
  • Onboard AC WiFi
  • RGB FUSION with Multi Zone LED Light Show Design, supports addressable LED & RGB LED strips
  • Thermal design for enhanced cooling
  • Smart Fan 5 
  • Triple M.2 prevents bottlenecks and throttling
  • AORUS 30 Armor: Integrated I/O shield, memory armor, and PCIe armor for a stronger build

Pros:

  • Compatible with the best Intel CPUs
  • ATX form factor leaves plenty of room for expansion
  • Lots of thermal cooling features 
  • Strong build with AORUS armor
  • Great aesthetics with customizable RGB

Cons: 

  • Can overclock, but limited

Verdict

The Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra is one of the best motherboards for gaming, with lots of advanced features. It works with the latest Intel processors, so it should fit with the best CPUs for gaming, and it’s an ATX motherboard so there’s plenty of room for expansions. If you’re looking for a larger motherboard with lots of added features and aesthetics, this is a great choice. The Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra also has thermal guard as well as “armor” that makes for a stronger build.

GIGABYTE Z390 AORUS ULTRA (Intel LGA1151/Z390/ATX/3xM.2 Thermal Guard/Onboard AC Wi-Fi/RGB Fusion/Gaming Motherboard)
821 Reviews
GIGABYTE Z390 AORUS ULTRA (Intel LGA1151/Z390/ATX/3xM.2 Thermal Guard/Onboard AC Wi-Fi/RGB Fusion/Gaming Motherboard)
  • Supports 9th and 8th Intel Core processors
  • Dual channel non ECC unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Intel optane memory ready
  • 12+1 Phases digital VRM solution with DrMOS
  • Advanced thermal design with direct touch heat pipe

 


 

Asus ROG Maximus XI Hero Z390 Gaming Motherboard

Asus ROG Maximus XI Hero

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Features:

  • Designed for 9th and 8th generation Intel Core processors i7/ i5/ i3, Pentium and Celeron processors
  • Chipset: Intel Z390
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: 4 64 GB DDR4 
  • Built for overclocking based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry with FanXpert 4 dynamic system cooling
  • Increased speed with Dual M.2 slots
  • Aura Sync RGB lighting with addressable headers 
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation 
  • SupremeFX for customizable audio
  • Built in WiFi 

Pros:

  • Great for overclocking, with dedicated onboard clock generator
  • Works with latest Intel CPUs 
  • ATX form factor leaves plenty of room for expansion
  • Customize aesthetics with RGB lighting 
  • Intelligent, automated tuning with 5-way optimization

Cons: 

  • Built in WiFi is not as reliable as others or as Ethernet connection

Verdict

The Asus ROG Maximus XI Hero Z390 Gaming Motherboard is one of the best gaming motherboards available, from one of the top brands, Asus. This motherboard is perfect for any pro gamers who want a custom rig with plenty of overclocking options. If you want the highest performing gaming PC, this motherboard can work all parts to their highest potential. For a high end motherboard, it’s also not too expensive. 

ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi) Z390 Gaming Motherboard LGA1151 (Intel 8th 9th Gen) ATX DDR4 DP HDMI M.2 USB 3.1 Gen2 802.11AC Wi-Fi
  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity, speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, on board 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling
  • Aura Sync RGB lighting with addressable headers features a nearly endless spectrum of colors with the ability to synchronize effects across an ever expanding ecosystem of AURA Sync enabled products
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality

 


 

MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus Motherboard

MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus Motherboard

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Features:

  • Supports 2nd and 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen/ Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics desktop processors for AM4 socket
  • Chipset: AMD X570
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: 4 DIMMs, Dual DDR4, up to 4400+(OC) MHz
  • M.2 Shield FROZR extends the motherboard’s heatsink over M.2 SSDs to prevent thermal throttling to maximize SSD performance
  • Core Boost efficient power system and delivery to CPU 
  • Audio Boost 4 HD audio processor
  • Pre-installed, grounded IO shielding
  • Onboard Red LED, and extendable headers with 16.8 million customizable colors
  • Overclocking ready

Pros:

  • Affordable for an X570 motherboard
  • Good overclocking features
  • M.2 SSD with great cooling features 
  • ATX leaves plenty of room for expansion 
  • Core Boost and Audio Boost are added bonuses 
  • Customizable aesthetics

Cons: 

  • Complaints of buggy BIOS 

Verdict

If you’re looking for a good AMD motherboard, the MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus is a great choice. It is extremely affordable for all it offers, as most other X570 motherboards of this caliber are in the 200+ price range. The MSI MPG X570 Gaming Plus Motherboard is capable of overclocking, so you can push your gaming experience to the next level, and the ATX board has room to add whatever features matter most to you. 

Sale
MSI MPG X570 GAMING PLUS Motherboard (AMD AM4, PCIe 4.0, DDR4, SATA 6Gb/s, M.2, USB 3.2 Gen 2, HDMI, ATX)
  • Supports 2nd and 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen/ Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics desktop processors for AM4 socket
  • Supports ddr4 memory, up to 4400+(oc) MHz
  • Audio boost 4 technology with nahimic 3 software enhancement for immersive experiences
  • Frozr heatsink with patented fan design – propeller blade technology and double ball bearings
  • Pre-installed IO shielding is grounded and protects the IO ports from potential electrostatic discharge damage from the external environment

 


 

Asus TUF Z390-Plus Gaming Motherboard

ASUS TUF Z390-Plus Gaming motherboard

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Features:

  • Designed for 9th and 8th generation Intel Core processors
  • Chipset: Z390
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: DDR4, up to 64 GB
  • Military-Grade TUF Components like TUF LANGuard, TUF Chokes, TUF Capacitors, and TUF MOSFETs
  • Gamer’s Guardian with SafeSlot and FanXpert 4 provides hardware-level safeguards
  • Comprehensive fan controls with FanXpert 4 and UEFI BIOS
  • Full RGB lighting control with built-in LEDs and strips powered by Asus Aura Sync
  • Dual M.2 slots for SSDs 
  • Built-in WiFi 
  • 8-channel HD gaming audio by RealTek

Pros:

  • Great budget gaming motherboard
  • Fits latest Intel processors
  • Overclocking capable
  • Highly customizable
  • Full RGB color control

Cons:

  • Integrated WiFi doesn’t work as well as other connectivity options

Verdict

The Asus TUF Z390 Plus Gaming Motherboard is probably the best budget motherboard for gamers. If you need a powerful gaming motherboard on a budget, this is a top pick. It is durable and has lots of power, and it works with the latest Intel CPUs. Gamer’s Guardian allows for great overclocking features, and there’s plenty to control and customize from fans to lighting to audio. 

ASUS TUF Z390-Plus Gaming (Wi-Fi) LGA1151 (Intel 8th and 9th Gen) DDR4 DP HDMI M.2 Z390 ATX Motherboard 802.11ac Wi-Fi USB 3.1 Gen2
  • Designed for 9th and 8th generation Intel Core processors to maximize connectivity and speed with dual M.2, Gigabit LAN, USB 3.1 Gen2
  • Military-Grade TUF Components like TUF LANGuard, TUF Chokes, TUF Capacitors, and TUF MOSFETs maximize system durability
  • Gamer’s Guardian with Safe Slot and FanXpert 4 provides hardware-level safeguards for maximum performance with dynamic system cooling
  • 8-channel HD Gaming Audio with TUF Gaming Headphone featuring Realtek S1200A high definition audio codec driven by Japanese capacitors for warm, immersive sound
  • ASUS Optimum II improves memory stability and performance by improving trace isolation between PCB layers to maintain signal integrity even at higher frequencies

 


 

Asus ROG Strix Z390-E Gaming Motherboard

Asus ROG Strix Z390-e Gaming

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Features:

  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors i7/ i5/ i3, Pentium and Celeron processors
  • Chipset: Z390
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: 4 64 GB DDR4, 4266+ MHz when overclocked
  • Onboard WiFi
  • ASUS OptiMem II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • AI Suite’s 5-Way Optimization overclocks based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry 
  • Comprehensive cooling options controlled by Fan Xpert 4 or UEFI BIOS
  • Dedicated PWM/DC header for self-contained water-cooling setups
  • SupremeFX audio for customizable sound
  • Asus Aura Sync full RGB lighting control 
  • Pre-mounted I/O shield for easy installation
  • Gamer’s Guardian ensures component longevity with Safe Slot, ESD guards, and DRAM over-current protection

Pros:

  • Good overclocking features
  • Smart 5-way optimization for overclocking saves time 
  • Great software like Gamer’s Guardian, Aura Sync, OptiMem II 
  • Compares well to pricier gaming motherboards

Cons: 

  • On the expensive side
  • 4 phase VRM can lead to overheating during overclock

Verdict

The Asus ROG Strix Z390-E Gaming Motherboard boasts a lot of great features. It can overclock better than many others, pushing your gaming PC to higher levels of performance, but there are some issues with overheating, so consider your cooling system if you choose this motherboard. Asus has great customizable features and software, so fine-tuning this motherboard is easy with smart optimization features. It even works with some of the latest VR headsets. For the price, this is a good gaming motherboard. 

Asus ROG Strix Z390-E Gaming Motherboard LGA1151 (Intel 8th 9th Gen) ATX DDR4 DP HDMI M.2 USB 3.1 Gen2 802.11AC Wi-Fi
  • Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity and speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, onboard 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
  • Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling; Operating System Windows 10 64 bit
  • Gamer's Guardian ensures component longevity with safe Slot, ESD guards and DRAM over current protection
  • Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality

 


 

Gigabyte Z390 UD Gaming Motherboard

Gigabyte Z390 UD gaming motherboard

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Features:

  • Supports 9th and 8th Intel Core processors
  • Chipset: Z390
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Stainless steel shielding on PCIe slots for added strength
  • 10+2 Phase Digital VRM
  • Smart Fan 5 with Hybrid Fan Headers 
  • Solid pin connectors offer stable power supply while CPU overloading
  • Support RGB Light strip in full colors
  • Overclock ready
  • Onboard WiFi

Pros:

  • Works with latest Intel CPUs
  • ATX has plenty of slots for expansions
  • Stainless steel PCIe ports ensure that heavy graphics cards won’t cause damage to the motherboard
  • Overclocking capabilities
  • Smart Fan gives real-time details on flow rate and temperatures
  • Affordable

Cons: 

  • Some users complained of a buzzing sound or feedback static
  • Trouble updating BIOS

Verdict

The Gigabyte Z390 UD Gaming Motherboard is very durable, with features like solid pin connections and stainless steel shields over PCIe slots. This gaming motherboard is affordable for all it comes with, although there are better options out there. Some user reviews show issues with this motherboard, but it still has great ratings overall and works well, with plenty of great features to add to your gaming PC. 

Sale
GIGABYTE Z390 UD, Intel LGA1151/Z390/ATX/M.2/Realtek ALC887/Realtek 8118 Gaming LAN/HDMI/Gaming Motherboard
  • Supports 9th and 8th Intel Core processors
  • Dual channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • New 10+2 Phases digital PWM design
  • NVME PCIe Gen3 x4 22110 M.2 Connector
  • Multi-way Graphics support with PCIe Armor and ultra durable design

 


 

MSI X470 Gaming Plus Motherboard

MSI Performance Gaming AMD X470 gaming motherboard

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Features:

  • Supports AMD RYZEN Series Processors and 7th Gen A-series/ Athlon Processors
  • Chipset: AMD X470
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: DDR4 3200+ with overclock
  • Steel armor PCIe slots can support multiple GPUs and heavy parts
  • Click BIOS 5: award winning BIOS 
  • Mystic Light and Mystic Light Sync: 7 colors and 7 effects and RGB customization
  • Turbo M.2 for lighting fast gaming experience
  • VR Ready: Automatically Optimizes Your System For VR Usage
  • MSI Core Boost and Audio Boost Technology
  • Supports AMD Crossfire

Pros: 

  • Compatible with AMD computers
  • Overclockable 
  • Great scalable and customizable BIOS
  • VR compatible
  • Affordable

Cons: 

  • May need help with cooling; some reports of overheating
  • No WiFi included

Verdict

The MSI X470 Gaming Plus is a great AMD motherboard on a budget. It can be overclocked, and it can handle multiple graphics cards to seriously enhance your gaming experience. The BIOS are easily scalable and customizable, so you can use this motherboard to create a gaming computer that works to your needs and specifications. While this isn’t the latest from MSI, it is a tried and true model. 

MSI Performance GAMING AMD X470 Ryzen 2 AM4 DDR4 Onboard Graphics CFX ATX Motherboard (X470 GAMING PLUS)
  • Supports AMD RYZEN Series Processors and 7th Gen A-series/ Athlon Processors
  • Supports DDR4-3200+(OC) Memory
  • Click BIOS 5: Award-winning BIOS with high resolution scalable font, favorites and search function
  • GAMING LAN with LAN Protect: The best online gaming experience with lowest latency and bandwidth management
  • MULTI-GPU: With Steel Armor PCI-E slots. Supports AMD Crossfire

 


 

Gigabyte X570 Aorus Elite Gaming Motherboard

Gigabyte X570 AORUS Elite Wifi gaming motherboard

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Features:

  • Supports AMD 3rd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics/ Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics processors
  • Chipset: AMD X570
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Memory: Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Onboard WiFi
  • Advanced heatsink design
  • RGB FUSION 2.0 with Multi-Zone Addressable LED Light Show Design, Supports Addressable LED & RGB LED Strips
  • Smart Fan 5 with temperature sensors and hybrid fan headers with FAN STOP option
  • Integrated I/O shield armor
  • Support for PCIe 4.0, Ultra fast M.2 

Pros:

  • Latest AMD chipset compatible with the newest Ryzen processors
  • Durable with features like I/O shield armor
  • Great cooling system with enlarged heatsink and Smart Fan 5

Cons: 

  • No mention of overclocking ability 
  • Complaints of loud fan noise

Verdict

The Gigabyte X570 Aorus Elite Gaming Motherboard is another great pick from Gigabyte, and it works with the latest Ryzen AMD components. This motherboard has plenty of great features and works well based on customer reviews. The onboard WiFi connects easily, and Ethernet is an option as well, and it has great cooling features. The product does not specify the ability to overclock, however. 

GIGABYTE X570 AORUS Elite Wi-Fi (AMD Ryzen 3000/X570/ATX/PCIe4.0/DDR4/Intel Dual Band 802.11AC Wi-Fi/Front USB Type-C/RGB Fusion 2.0/M.2 Thermal Guard/Gaming Motherboard)
  • Supports AMD 3rd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics/ Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics processors
  • Dual channel non-ECC unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • 12+2 phases digital VRM solution with DrMOS
  • Advanced heatsink design with enlarge heatsink
  • Dual ultra-fast NVMe PCIe 4.0/3.0 x4 M.2 with single thermal guards

 


 

ASRock B450M-HDV Gaming Motherboard

ASRock B450M-HDV Gaming Motherboard

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Features:

  • Supports processors with AM4 socket including 3rd Gen Ryzen 3000 series processors and CPUs up to 105W
  • Chipset: AMD Promontory B450
  • Form Factor: Micro ATX
  • Memory: 4 DDR4 slots, up to 32 GB
  • Onboard WiFi 
  • Plenty of available BIOS settings

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • Great features for smaller AMD gaming PC 
  • Customizable BIOS

Cons: 

  • Weak I/O shields 
  • No custom RGB
  • Micro ATX has less room for expansion

Verdict

This motherboard from ASRock is under $100, making it the least expensive option on our list. If you’re on a tight budget and can’t splurge on a high end motherboard, this is a great pick. This is a micro-ATX motherboard, so it fits into smaller cases for those without room for an ATX mobo. It isn’t the best on the market, but for the price it will get the job done well. 

Sale
ASRock B450M-HDV R4.0 AM4 AMD Promontory B450 SATA 6Gb/s Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
  • Cup: socket AM4, 6 power Phase design, supports CPU up to 105W
  • Chipset: AMD Promontory B450
  • Slots : 1 PCIe 3.0 x16, 1 PCIe 2.0 x1
  • Audio: Relate ALC887 7.1-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
  • LAN: Relate RTL8111H PCIE x1 Gigabit Ethernet Controller

 


 

How To Choose a Motherboard for Gaming

Gaming PCs are complicated, and if it’s your first time building a custom rig then you’ll probably need some help. The motherboard is one of the most vital pieces of any computer, as it connects each part and allows communication between them. Consider the following when choosing a gaming motherboard. 

Chipset/Socket 

The chipset controls communication between your motherboard, CPU, RAM, and other parts of your computer. It is permanently attached to the motherboard, and determines important factors like what components are compatible with your motherboard, expansion options, and whether or not you can overclock. The CPU socket will determine which processor you can use as well. 

If you already have a CPU, be sure to choose a motherboard with a compatible chipset and CPU socket.

Form Factor 

Most modern motherboards come in only three sizes, also called form factors. The most common form factors today are ATX, Micro-ATX, and Mini-ATX. ATX is the standard, with the most room for expansion and added features. Mini-ATX is the smallest, and is best for those with smaller set ups and only one graphics card. Micro-ATX falls in the middle, both in terms of size and room for expansions. 

Consider the size of your PC gaming rig and what you can feasibly fit, as well as the expansions you plan to add on your motherboard. You’ll need room to connect all of your parts, so consider your full gaming rig when making a purchase. 

Ability to Overclock

Does your motherboard support overclocking? Many serious gamers overclock their gaming PCs to perform beyond the factory settings, but you’ll need a motherboard that can safely support this option. Consider whether or not you plan on overclocking, and buy a motherboard to fit your needs. If you aren’t going to overclock, there’s no need to spend extra money on a MOBO that has the ability.

FAQ

Will upgrading my motherboard improve performance? 

The motherboard does not directly affect performance, but it can indirectly affect your gaming performance. Motherboards can help connected parts like your GPU or processor work better or worse, so a good motherboard offers stability to the other parts of your gaming PC. You should choose your motherboard based on its compatibility with other parts, as those will affect performance and must work together with the MOBO. If you want overclocking capabilities, your motherboard can have an affect on this. 

Does the motherboard affect FPS?

A motherboard does not directly affect FPS. FPS is controlled by the CPU and GPU, so as long as your motherboard is compatible with these parts, it should not affect the frame rate. 

Does the motherboard affect GPU?

The motherboard does not affect GPU performance, typically. If you only use one graphics card, then any quality motherboard will work well so long as all the parts fit together. If you’re using multiple graphics cards or overclocking the GPU, then you would need a higher end motherboard to fit multiple cards or to safely overclock. 

Does the motherboard affect RAM speed? 

Yes, the motherboard affects RAM speed. Your motherboard must be compatible with your RAM module, or else it will not work or it will only work to the motherboard’s threshold. 

Do all motherboards have WiFi? 

No, not all motherboards come with built-in WiFi connectivity. All motherboards should have room for a WiFi card to connect to the internet, unless you’re using an ethernet cable. Built-in WiFi motherboards are good for intense gaming, but they are not a necessity and can increase the price of the motherboard. A good gaming router and a WiFi chip work just as well. 

Final Thoughts

Putting together your own custom gaming computer is an exciting project, but it’s important to get all the right parts. Pick from the best motherboards for gaming and find the best fit for your gaming PC! Find all the best gaming parts here on iDapt.

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Last update on 2020-12-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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