If you're in the market for a new computer, you know just how vital it is that you pick the right motherboard! A computer's motherboard—or mobo, as tech geeks like to say—is its heart. One of them, anyway! And certainly the most vital component of any new rig. When you pick out your motherboard, you're deciding how many USB ports you'll have, what type of ports they are, what sorts of graphics processing units you can install in your computer, and much more. It is, irrefutably, an absolutely integral part of your PC—and, thus, one of the biggest decisions you'll have to make when you're putting a rig together
It's important that you pick out the most appropriate motherboard for you, based on how "powerful" you intend your computer to be, and what you intend to do with it. But it's equally important that you not go broke picking out one part! Remember, your motherboard is just the start of your part list. You've still got to budget for a processor, graphics card, hard drive(s), and so much more—so it's important that you find the best deal that you can on a great processor!
To that end, we've put together a list of the best six motherboards for 2019! Whether you're looking for a gaming motherboard or something a little less powerful, we've got you covered. We'll compare motherboard prices and utility, and hopefully by the time you're finished with our list, you'll know just what you want to buy!
1. Intel Z390 Aorus Pro WiFi
In late 2017, Intel released their Coffee Lake Refresh chips. They promised that the new chips would produce the most powerful processors that they'd put out to date—and, to test that, they released the Aorus Pro. It is, unsurprisingly, one of the best motherboards available today
The Aorus Pro supports 8th and 9th generation core i9/7/5/3 processors, has an advanced thermal design with multi-cuts, heatsinks, and a heat pipe, and comes with a Smart Fan 5 that has Hybrid Fan Headers through FAN STOP. Its PCIe slots are reinforced and it's chock full o' RGB lights.
With great aesthetics and amazing cooling power, the Aorus Pro is a solid pick for Motherboard of the Year—and an excellent addition to your rig.
2. Intel Z390 Asus ROG Maximus XI Code
The Maximus XI is, simply put, the nuclear option of motherboards. If you've got a heaping helping of disposable income and you want it all, the Maximus will provide it, without a doubt!
The Maximus features a five-way optimization for overclocking that uses smart prediction and thermal telemetry to adjust your overclock rate on the fly, all while keeping your system cool with Fan Xpert 4's dynamic cooling. It has in-built water cooling headers and a Cross Chill EK III water block that allows water temp monitoring without a standalone controller.
Besides the hardware, the Maximus has OptiMem II—which maps memory across signal pathways for quicker computation—and SupremeFX, an integrated-audio solution that provides a neutral, detailed sound signature using the S1220 codec
All in all, the Maximus is what you want in your computer if you intend to lord the rig over everybody you know!
3. Gigabyte Z390 UD
While still utilizing the Coffee Lake platform—which is, undeniably, the way to go—the Gigabyte Z390 UD is the best choice for somebody building a rig on a budget. It doesn't have all the RGB lights and built-in WiFi that some pricier motherboards have, but it's hard to beat the price to performance ratio of the Gigabyte.
It does take advantage of Thunderbolt 3 capability, and it is much more affordable than the Maximus or the Aorus Pro—but you'll also be sacrificing some extra features like SLI. If you've got your eye on running a setup with two or more graphics card, the Gigabyte just won't be able to handle it.
4. Z390M Gaming Edge AC
Calling all petite cases! If your case is on the smaller size—maybe you just don't have a lot of space on your desk, who are we to judge?—the Gaming Edge AC is an excellent choice in motherboard. It's a Micro-ATX form factor board boasting all the features of a full-sized ATX, but much, much cheaper.
You've still got dual M.2 slots, support for SLI and Crossfire, and tons of performance. Great things come in small packages, as they say! If you're in the market for a smaller motherboard than some, the Gaming Edge AC is definitely the way to go
5. Asus ROG Strix Z390-I Gaming
Though Strix Asus motherboard is a little pricier than the Gaming Edge AC, it is truly for those seeking the smallest of motherboards. What you do with your itty bitty little motherboard is, frankly, none of our business—but if your real estate is at an absolute premium, you literally cannot find a smaller motherboard than the Strix Z390-I
But don't let the Strix's size fool you! You're getting a very tiny motherboard, but you aren't sacrificing on key features with this Mini-ITX. It's got double capacity memory compatibility, so you can still top out at 64GB of onboard memory, and you've got all the slots you'll need built in
All in all, this Asus motherboard is an opportunity you can't afford to miss!
6. Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 7
To briefly step outside the Coffee Lake platform, we present the Aorus Gaming 7 , which utilizes AMD's newest X470 chipset! That means full support on AMD Ryzen 2nd Gen processors, so if you're a part of team red, this is the motherboard you want. It supports Quad-GPu SLi and its RAM absolutely rockets at 3,600 MHz—not to mention its multi-zone RGB puts on a great light show!
Of course, the Aorus Gaming's price tag isn't for the faint of heart. You're not going to get this level of performance without shelling out. It may not break the bank, but it'll run you almost us much as the Maximus does! Ultimately, whether or not the X470 can beat out Intel's Coffee Lake is questionable—and maybe even a matter of preference.
Well, there you have it! The six best motherboards currently on the market, lined up for you to examine. Ultimately, any of these six motherboards is an excellent choice that's sure to fit well with your rig—the real qualifiers, here, are how much you're willing to spend—the motherboard prices—and whether or not you need a proper gaming motherboard to complete your build. And, of course, whether or not you prefer Intel or AMD! We won't weigh in on that, as it's impolite to ask a gamer's preference... but you're sure to find more support with modern games if you go with Intel—so do with that what you will!
We hope this list has given you some idea of which motherboard is best for you, and we hope that your next rig build goes smoothly!
This article is sponsored by StockCheck.com, your source for aggregated in-stock inventory from various suppliers.