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Best motherboard buying tips

Choosing a motherboard for your CPU is very easy. But how to select the best motherboard. We are here to provide some unique tips to choose a motherboard for you. This article is for you to identify the most important things to check before buying a motherboard.

The motherboard is the main circuit board of the computer. You must choose the best form factor for your motherboard. To get quality performance on your computer the CPU socket, FSB, peripherals, RAM compatibility is the essential things, you must check.

What is a motherboard?

A motherboard provides an interface for the various parts of the computer. The motherboard helps to connect various parts like a mouse, keyboard, monitor, CPU, RAM, hard drive, and so on. It is also known as the mainboard, system board, logic board.

best motherboard
Fig: motherboard

Motherboard Types

There are various types of motherboards. Manufacturer designs motherboards to work with specific hardware like processor, RAM, etc.

You can find different form factor motherboards in the market. The form factor is a term that defines motherboard specifications. These specifications are the motherboard dimension, power supply types, location of mounting holes, etc. Following are some popular motherboard form factors:

  • AT
  • Baby AT
  • ATX
  • Micro ATX
  • Mini ATX

AT full form “Advanced Technology”.

ATX full form “Advanced Technology Extended”.

ATX is the most popular form factor motherboard.

How to choose the best motherboard

The motherboard details help you to identify the best one.

If you want to buy a computer then it is very important to know about the motherboard. A good motherboard can provide quality performance to the user. The motherboard details help you to identify the best one. To purchase a good motherboard following are the details you need to check first.

  1. CPU Socket
  2. Front Side Bus (FSB)
  3. RAM Slots
  4. Peripherals

1. CPU Socket

The first thing to consider when selecting a motherboard for your computer is which CPU you will be using. Intel and AMD CPUs both use different socket types. So they require different motherboards.

You also should not forget about the processor speed. Higher the processor speed, you will get high performance on your system. One important thing you must ensure that your motherboard supports the CPU you have selected.

When you purchase a motherboard make sure you take note of which processor it supports. This is even more important if you replace the motherboard in an existing computer; i.e. you don’t replace other parts it’s just the motherboard.

2. Front Side Bus (FSB)

The Northbridge connects to the processor through FSB. FSB full form is Front Side Bus. This allows the CPU to communicate with the system RAM, AGP slot (for older graphics cards), and the PCI-E slot for newer graphics cards. The Northbridge also allows the CPU to communicate with the Southbridge.

You will normally find that the chipset manufacturer is separate from the motherboard maker. Some of the main chipset manufacturers are:

  • Nvidia – nForce
  • AMD
  • Via Technologies
  • Intel

When looking to purchase a motherboard, there are a couple of things to keep in mind.

A higher Front Side Bus will accelerate the internal workings of your motherboard. FSB speeds currently range from 166 to 1666 MHz. The higher FSB speed is better for you. As a result, you need to pay more to buy your motherboard.

If buying a motherboard CPU combo or bundle, review CPU speed comparisons first – you might not need the fastest, but you should make that decision knowingly.

3. Memory Slots

It is important that you decide how much memory you want in your system. For most of today’s computers, 4GB of RAM will be more than enough unless you are a gamer, or work a lot with video and graphics editing.

While choosing the motherboard for your computer, you must check memory slots. You should buy the motherboard that has at least 2 memory slots. This will help you to increase the RAM size in your system.

Always try to purchase the latest Generation of RAM i.e. DDR4 (currently on the market). You need to purchase a motherboard that is compatible with your selected RAM versions.

4. Peripherals

The number and type of peripherals that you need to connect to your PC should also be taken into account. Most peripherals today connect through USB ports, and they can add up quickly. Once you hook in your Keyboard, Mouse, and Printer, you have already used up 3 of the USB slots.

Most motherboards will come with at least 4 USB slots on the back panel and will usually have at least 2 more that will connect to the USB ports on the computer case.

If you are planning to add different cards such as a sound card, graphics card, wireless network card with your motherboard then make sure that you have enough PCI or PCI-e slots onboard.

When selecting the right/best motherboard for your computer, keep in mind other items that will connect to your computer such as:

  • digital camera
  • flash drive
  • external drive

Finally, you are able to understand the important parts to consider for a good motherboard. Always consider the above things to choose a motherboard.