Best Motherboards For Gaming 2021

ASUS ROG Maximus XII Extreme

ASUS ROG Maximus XII Extreme Z490 (WiFi 6) LGA...
  • Intel LGA 1200 socket: Designed to unleash the maximum performance of 10th Gen Intel Core processors
  • Extreme Power Solution: features 16 infineon TDA21490 power stages, each rated to handle 90 amps,...
  • Superb Thermal Design: Extra-large heatsinks for VRM, chipset and M. 2 slots, solid steel backplate,...

If you want the best and most complete Intel Comet Lake motherboard, I’m afraid you will have to pay for it. And pay through the nose if the Asus Z490 Maximus XII Extreme is something to go through. It’s, as the name suggests, extreme, includes a variety of luxurious and convenient extras (a screwdriver with interchangeable heads for one), and it’s also one of the better performing Z490 boards. that we have tested.

The ASUS Maximus XII EXTREME is a niche motherboard designed for the most extreme enthusiast, enthusiast on an extreme budget… or both. This is one of the most impressive motherboards ever seen on our benchmark. It ranges from beginners who need connectivity or want incredible aesthetics, to experts who want to become mad scientists! But that only makes sense if you buy a Core i9 from the K series and really intend to overclock it. The Maximus XII will allow you to get the highest clock speed out of your 10900K and it won’t turn you into a pile of molten slag while doing it. The MSI Z490 Godlike is actually the fastest Z490 at stock speed, but I’d rather have the ROG card in my camp if I’m going the OC route.

ASUS crammed so much into this board that they needed to use E-ATX to fit it. E-ATX is simply a larger board than a standard ATX form factor, but it’s also important to note that the thermal solution on the Maximus XII EXTREME involves a steel backplate under the board and a heatsink / top plate on aluminum in the PCIe zone, plus the usual VRM heatsinks, all add weight and rigidity to the board. The top aluminum heat sink is removable and covers the slots for two M.2 SSDs with thermal pads to ensure proper heat transfer.

The cooling solution execution is second to none with a pleasing aesthetic that includes metal, glass and RGB elements, all combined in one theme that includes blacks with polished highlights and mirrored surfaces that will suit any building system. . OLED display adds a touch of luxury but is also useful Obviously, this is only for the high-end PC versions; However, the price tag means you can really build a respectable full-featured gaming PC for the price of that single motherboard. It’s an ambitious Z490 motherboard and arguably Comet Lake’s best overclocking gaming motherboard, but I admit it’s not a particularly realistic buy for most of us.

Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master AMD Ryzen Gaming Motherboard

GIGABYTE X570 AORUS Master (AMD Ryzen...
  • Supports AMD 3rd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen/ 2nd Gen Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics/ Ryzen with Radeon...
  • Dual channel ECC/ non-ECC unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Direct 14 phases Infineon digital VRM solution with 50A power stage

Packed with useful features and built around a high-performance 14-phase power solution, Gigabyte is clearly targeting enthusiasts with its high-end X570 Aorus Master motherboard. Infineon’s deployment of a true 14-phase digital PWM controller confirms this claim. This X570 motherboard is still one of the best choices for any high-end AMD Zen 2 or Zen 3 build. There are several reasons for this, but the three M.2 slots, the excellent wired and wireless network, and the expansion possibilities are at the top of the list. Yes, this is one of the more expensive options out there, but you really get a lot of motherboard for your money, and it’s pretty reliable too. And let’s not forget the solid VRM heatsink that includes two finned bays connected via a heat pipe. It’s great to see Gigabyte continue their performance-based design philosophy for VRM cooling on high-end motherboards, because that’s really a big factor in the overall performance and stability equation.

The 14-phase VRM design ensures that your processor receives plenty of clean power, making it one of the best options for overclocking your Ryzen 3000 or Ryzen 5000 processor of choice. All that metal on top of the VRMs helps keep things cool, as does the massive plate that covers the back of the dash. All M.2 slots have heat sinks, and the memory and expansion slots are ruggedized. Its X570 chipset is fully compatible with PCIe 4.0 graphics and storage cards such as AMD Radeon RX 5700 and 5700 XT. Some other niceties of the Gigabyte Aorus X570 Xtreme are that each connector is at a 90 degree angle for seamless cable management and you will also find plenty of RGB lighting on board. Here’s what you’ll need for a high-end, modern AMD version.

In addition to the high-end power solution, the Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master offers several useful features for a variety of enthusiasts. The cooling fans (excuse the pun) will be happy to see seven 4-pin fan headers and two thermal sensor connectors. Triple PCIe Gen 4 M.2 slots can be used simultaneously and are all cooled. Network gurus will be happy to see 2.5 Gb Ethernet and 2.4 Gbps compatible 802.11ax WiFi. And for those who love style, the understated look of black and silver should help avoid color clashes.

If you’re building the latest AMD-centric platform with the latest 3rd Gen Ryzen processors, you’re going to want the best gaming motherboard money can buy as a foundation. It will be difficult to find a better motherboard than the Gigabyte X570 Aorus Xtreme. Featuring a modern AM4 socket designed to handle the extreme number of cores and power demands of 3rd Gen Ryzen processors.

Asus AM4 TUF Gaming X570-Plus

ASUS AM4 TUF Gaming X570-Plus (Wi-Fi) AM4 Zen 3...
  • AMD AM4 Socket: Ready for 2nd and 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen processors to maximize connectivity and speed with up...
  • Enhanced power solution: military-grade TUF components, ProCool socket and Digi+ VRM for maximum...
  • Comprehensive Cooling: Active PCH heatsink, VRM heatsink, M.2 heatsink, hybrid fan headers and Fan Xpert

The ASUS TUF Gaming X570-Plus is our pick for the best overall AMD gaming motherboard. For years, one of the most compelling reasons to buy an AMD processor has been the AM4 socket. Each Zen, Zen +, Zen 2, and Zen 3 processor uses the same socket, making it easy to swap out processors or motherboards without worrying about compatibility. The X570 chipset represents the latest and greatest motherboards to ever have an AMD processor. These cards can hold anything from first-gen Ryzen to the new 5000 series.

The X570 and B550 cards are your best bet for running AMD Zen 3 processors, but even a “budget” X570 is a hefty investment. After all, the chipset was designed almost exclusively for high-end enthusiast cards. Still, the cheapest motherboards in the current lineup offer the best combination of performance, features, and affordability if you absolutely must have the best current technology.

The ASUS X570 is another well-priced AM4 card with great features. Since it is designed for gaming, it has many heatsinks and ASUS claims that it uses military grade components in its construction. While it may be debatable, there’s no question about quality, and they even added built-in RGB lighting in an attractive pattern. This motherboard also comes with a VRM with 12 + 2 power stages and two M.2 slots for its SSDs. As with most modern motherboards, there are four DDR4 slots and two full-length PCIe slots. There are also three RGB headers and six fan headers. It’s refreshing to see the built-in Wi-Fi capability and a USB port on a budget motherboard when they are overlooked by most of the competition. The X570 is without a doubt one of the best options for a budget gaming motherboard.

The TUF is one of the best gaming motherboards even on this premium chipset. Its 12 + 2 phase VRM gives you a powerful and stable power flow for superior overclocking. It also features a 6-layer PCB, two M.2 ports for fast NVMe storage, dual PCIe 4.0, and USB Type-C. As for connectivity? It has Realtek L8200A Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0! It’s less flashy than ASUS ROG Strix cards, but the TUF’s value for money can’t be beat. This card is for you if you have a Ryzen 5000 series processor or if you have an older Ryzen processor and plan to upgrade to a 5000 processor in the future.

Asus ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming LGA1151 Mini ITX

ASUS ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming LGA1151 (Intel 8th...
  • Designed for 9th and 8th generation Intel Core processors to maximize connectivity and speed with dual...
  • Revamped 5-Way Optimization overclocks intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry...
  • Gamer's Guardian ensures longevity with Safe Slot, ESD Guards and DRAM Overcurrent Protection while M.2...

If you need the smallest motherboard possible without compromising key CPU functionality, you should look at the Asus ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming. With this motherboard, you don’t have to compromise on functionality or power. You don’t even have to settle for 32GB of RAM. Thanks to Asus dual capacity memory support, you can have up to 64GB of memory on the smallest motherboard you’ve ever seen. Unfortunately, like most Z390 motherboards, its price is not for the faint of heart, so be prepared to spend a bit of money if you want the smallest of the best motherboards.

The smallest Strix has a long list of features, flawless despite the small form factor, including dual PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 slots, Intel v219 ethernet, enhanced Intel 9560 2×2 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and an ALC1220A audio codec. supported by isolated circuits and headphone amplifiers. Despite the dense feature set, the Strix Z390-I’s clean design allows for quick system setup and configuration, an important consideration when building ITX platforms. It’s worth noting that this card can be difficult to find, but the previous-generation ROG Strix Z370-I model, with its slimmer design, is still a great alternative, especially at clearance prices.

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